So Barney Frank called Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia a “homophobe.” Then Scalia supporters on Fox News defended him, with Sean Hannity insisting he was one of the most “brilliant jurists of all time.” And now Frank is vehemently defending his use of the word to describe Scalia — who IS A RAGING BIGOT — while drawing a line between homophobes and those who simply don’t support gay rights.
“What a ‘homophobe’ means is someone who has prejudice about gay people,” Frank tells told WBZ radio. Scalia’s court opinions “makes it very clear that he’s angry, frankly, about the existence of gay people.”
But: “While I support same-sex marriage, I don’t think if you’re against it you’re homophobic. I don’t think Clarence Thomas is homophobic.”
Okay, question time: Must you be overtly hateful to be a homophobe? Or does simply not supporting equal rights for gay people — which to some is a clear denial of civil rights for all Americans — qualify you as well?