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Welcome to Grandpa’s World, Baby Cheney

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Posted on May 29, 2007
David Bohrer / The White House

Family Portrait: Lynne and Dick Cheney present their new grandson, Samuel David, to the world.

By Robert Scheer

Thank the Almighty, whatever that might mean, for planting the seed of life in the lesbian body of Mary Cheney and for granting her parents the opportunity to show support for a homosexual couple raising a child in an atmosphere of love. The message, carried prominently in news reports throughout the world, is that America has come of age in recognizing, as do most truly modern countries, that homosexuality is indeed normal.

Perhaps they knew not what they did, but the picture the White House released of Vice President Dick Cheney, coming as close as he does to a smile, and his beaming wife, Lynne, cradling their newborn grandson, Samuel David Cheney, was a milestone in the nation’s struggle for human rights for all. Never again will it be possible for conservative Republicans to shun homosexuals in any facet of American life without appearing outrageously hypocritical.

If it is right for Mary Cheney and Heather Poe, partners of 15 years, to be entrusted with the birthing and raising of a child, then how is it logical, as this White House has insisted, to deny the legal status of marriage to same-sex couples seeking to have their commitment legally acknowledged? Does not the life of Mary Cheney, born to God-fearing parents in a home of presumably high moral tone, and herself an activist in the Republican Party that has exploited homophobia for temporal political advantage, definitively answer the argument that homosexuality is not a fickle choice but a facet of the natural order of things? On what basis could this nation logically deny Mary Cheney the right to equal participation in any aspect of our publicly governed life, be it through military or civic institutions?

The problem is that the inalienable human rights to freedom and the pursuit of happiness do not, according to the law, apply to Mary Cheney. Living as she does in Virginia, she must assume full responsibility for her child without being able to legally rely on her partner, who has no state-recognized connection to the child. As another example of the absurd contradictions that mark the law in this area, had Mary Cheney sought to fight in the war in Iraq, which her father did so much to cause, she would have been rejected because of the very honesty she exhibited in her personal life.

Surely Mary Cheney’s commitment to a monogamous relationship would indicate that she would be less likely to engage in any sexual philandering that might disturb the tranquility of barracks life. One cannot imagine her participating in the abuse, with its bizarre perversion of same-sex contact, that heterosexual men and women in the U.S. military staged at Abu Ghraib prison to the shock of the world. And certainly her energetic work as a staffer in the 2004 Bush-Cheney re-election campaign should provide ample assurance that homosexuals can be as mindlessly pro-war as anyone. Given that papa Cheney ducked the draft when it was his turn to fight, a Mary Cheney in the military would have done much to demonstrate that this family is willing to share in the sacrifice they demand from others.


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But what of the future of baby Samuel David Cheney? Considering the homophobia that his grandpa’s Grand Old Party has perpetuated in past decades, it is not likely that he will have an easy time. Chances are overwhelming that he will turn out heterosexual—and admiring of his homosexual parents—given the statistical precedents. After all, the mind-numbing contradiction in any public discussion of the so-called “homosexual lifestyle” is that the gay community often approximates the ideal of hardworking, taxpaying stability that has provided a healthy core to the renewal of just about every city in the red or blue zone.

Yes, baby Samuel, even in the care of far less famous gay couples, would be more likely exposed to the best family values, not to mention a higher level of art, music and croissants, than he would had he been born to a heterosexual family. But if the GOP base that put Cheney in power continues to have its way with our politics, the stigma that has tainted Mary Cheney’s life will harm the vice president’s grandson in ways that are as varied as they are immoral. So how about it, Grandpa? Take the next step and join PFLAG, or Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, whose members have done so much to redress the grievances with which you have long been associated.

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s book,
“The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street.”

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By ardee, June 4, 2007 at 5:51 am Link to this comment

Thanx dik dik, I wish I could return the compliment but the truth is that you are a detriment to intelligent conversation. Your pattern is obvious from the perusal of your responses to any who dare hold an opinion at variance with your own. You descend immediately into childish tantrum. This is no way to convince others, you might understand, but I would imagine that you are not here to promote an agenda only to convince yourself that you are something you aint.

Some are here, believe it or dont, because they care deeply about this nation, because they hope to share ideas, learn from others, perhaps teach something once in a while and, in the end, to make a difference. You are here, most likely, because you have already alienated everyone in your life and have nothing else to do…sorry for you but there is always hope.

You will probably respond to this but know that I will not be reading your crap any longer.

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By ardee, June 3, 2007 at 5:35 pm Link to this comment


So your made up quotes are in league with those of Aquinas, Juvenal and Churchill. Look, I am beginning to understand that your sobriquet is apt indeed. But if you arent fourteen do you think you might stop posting as if you were? And if you arent proud of being a DIcK stop trying so hard to be one…please.

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By ardee, June 3, 2007 at 4:46 pm Link to this comment

Mr. Canning’s witty bon mot, coming as it does between the squalling of an apparent cat fight, brings relief…thanks sir.

“Darwinian man, though well behaved,
At best is only a monkey shaved.”
William S. Gilbert
Princess Ida

“And there’s a lust in Man no Charm can tame,
of loudly publishing our neighbors shame;
On Eagles wings immortal scandals fly,
While Virtuous Actions are but Born and Die.”

“It is so simple to be wise. Just think of something stupid to say and then dont say it.”
Sam Levinson

“We must love them both, those whose opinions we share, and those whose opinions we dont share.
They have both labored in the search for Truth and both have helped is in finding it.”
Thomas Aquinas

Last one, I promise….

“A fanatic is one who cant change his mind and wont change the subject.”
Winston Churchill

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By cann4ing, June 3, 2007 at 8:22 am Link to this comment

Cheney is smiling because he is thinking that, when the child is old enough, he can take him duck hunting.

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By Blueboy1938, June 2, 2007 at 5:12 am Link to this comment

The courts in the State of Virginia, which must approve each adoption, routinely deny adoption by the second person in a same-sex relationship as being “contrary to the best interest of the child.”  I guess that’s why the boy’s name is Cheney, rather than Cheney-Poe.  It is time, of course, for Mary Cheney and Heather Poe to change that.  It seems to me that a Virginia judge just might respond to the glare of publicity and buck the trend when faced with a decision that will affect the grandson of the Vice President of the United States.  Of course, that assumes “public opinion” in Virginia has reached that level of enlightenment.  No time like the present to find out.

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By TRUTH BE TOLD, May 31, 2007 at 6:08 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Screw you bastards. Just because The Vice President accepts the child does not mean he approves of his daughter’s lifestyle.
The baby biologically belongs to his daughter and not her partner. That is fact. So the Vice President should have no problem with that.

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By Tom Doff, May 31, 2007 at 5:01 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Mary and Heather better hope that DickHead doesn’t ‘Go Mental’ some night, and hallucinate that little Samuel David is a puppy.

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By Anti Dick, May 31, 2007 at 12:46 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sure hope you are read’n this stuff Dickie.
What goes around comes around huh ?

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By Toby, May 31, 2007 at 12:33 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

For one brief moment, human feeling penetrated through the maze of wires and electrodes and the heart felt joy.

A smile skipped across the face.

Then a dangerous thought crossed the mind. “I have identified the enemy and the enemy is me!”

And the scowl returned.

Congratulations to Samuel David and his parents Mary Cheney and Heather Poe.

You may still prove to be the miracle that restores sanity to the conservative right.

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By Shannon P., May 31, 2007 at 10:33 am Link to this comment

I sure hope ‘Grampa’ is forbidden to teach little Sam how to hunt. 
Watch out Mary, there is more than one way to skin a cat.

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By daytripper, May 31, 2007 at 10:17 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

why is it that all ideologues, of every strain, fail to measure up to the standards they seek to impose on others.

not now and again. EVERY TIME !!!!!

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By Matt, May 31, 2007 at 8:09 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

For the Cheneys, having a space in which to live one’s life with dignity as a gay person is simply something very expensive that you can buy if you’re really rich.

To them, it’s just like expensive art. Do we feel sorry for someone who can’t afford a Picasso? No, of course not. If you want to own a Picasso, you have to make - or inherit - a big pile of money, and then just buy it. The government is not obliged to subsidize your “right” to this.

So if you want to have a decent life as an openly gay person, free to be respected with your partner and child as a family, you’ll just have to build a fortress of wealth and privilege around yourself.

Like great art, human dignity is undoubtedly a very beautiful thing; therefore, properly, only the rich shall have it. The rest can only gawk in envy.

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By Gloria Picchetti, May 31, 2007 at 7:50 am Link to this comment

G-d knows I love having fun with Dick’s hypocracy. Let us get back to little Sammy. Will he grown up and if so, how long? What if Grampa’s foreign policy and/or lack of regard for the earth/air/water kills Sammy and all of us? Perhaps that is how the White House plans to push faith in G-d; just screw up everything so we have no choice but to desparately cling to some form of religious faith.
Oh by the way Rowdy, the bunny fucker, are you two looking for a good maid?

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By Big Dick, May 31, 2007 at 6:01 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Dick is a pig. Get out.

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By Terrence Sullivan, May 31, 2007 at 4:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thank goodness for The Turkey Basters of America without a doubt a subsidiary of Halliburton.

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By Forkboy, May 30, 2007 at 8:45 pm Link to this comment

Is that Mr. Burns in the picture?  Why is he with Lynne Cheney?

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RAE's avatar

By RAE, May 30, 2007 at 5:32 pm Link to this comment

Beau Alford posted: “Sorry, I do not like people who like the same sex as spouces/ partnerns… It’s WRONG !!!!”

Well, Beau, I don’t like people who don’t like the same sex as spouses and partners because that attitude is not only small-minded and ignorant, but bigotted and prejudiced. (If you don’t understand those big words, they mean I consider YOUR ATTITUDE TO BE WRONG.)

But it’s OK! What a wonderful country you live in. If you don’t like same sex relationships, you DON’T HAVE TO HAVE ONE!

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By minamoto no taira, May 30, 2007 at 4:25 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’ll bet Cheney can’t wait to share some puppyblood with the poor little soul.

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By QuyTran, May 30, 2007 at 3:57 pm Link to this comment

How about the newborn babies of our young troops killed in Iraq ? Their pictures will never be shown to the public !

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By rowdy, May 30, 2007 at 2:10 pm Link to this comment

74015;beau alford. you should really get a cheap dictionary,or at least return to the third grade. two simple everyday words and you can’t spell them right[spouse and partner].i’ll bet you think the world is only six thousand years old and darwin was wrong. you really wouldn’t like me and my partner,we have been together for 30 years. we both have a masters degree, we make over 100,000 a year and we fuck like bunnies.

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By Shannon P., May 30, 2007 at 2:03 pm Link to this comment

I would love to go to bed tonight with the comfort of knowing that “it’s a new day” in the republican dimension, maybe wake up with a giant rainbow in my room…doubt it. Mr. Scheer is a true optimist.
The great “change of heart” that we are all looking for from these people is a long time coming. But it’s coming. Introducing them to books and science might be a good start and then remind them that word ‘humankind’ includes an awful lot of people.

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By Jim, May 30, 2007 at 12:42 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Never again will it be possible for conservative Republicans to shun homosexuals in any facet of American life without appearing outrageously hypocritical.”
This is a good thought but we have all seen the open hypocrisy of the Bush administration and the outrageous propaganda ploys of Rove and Company. With the short memory and the short attention span of the public, BushCo can easily push for a Constitutional Amendment at the same time as moribund and mean-spirited Cheney smiles about his new grandson.

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By d.alon, May 30, 2007 at 12:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The photographer probably got Cheney to smile by holding up a picture of a homeless guy.

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By Beau Alford, May 30, 2007 at 12:04 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sorry, I do not like people who like the same sex as spouces/ partnerns… It’s WRONG !!!!

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By rage, May 30, 2007 at 11:18 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Did anyone else hear the Jerry Goldsmith theme to The OMEN playing when they looked at that picture of the unholy trinity?

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By bran, May 30, 2007 at 10:56 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I don’t understand how this author and most commentors can say things like “never again” and “now everyone will see Cheney as a hypocrite.” Triumphantly announcing that the neoconservative right is somehow, at last, faced with unavoidable and incontrovertable evidence of their bigotry that they must finally answer to flies in the face of one of the major deciets of the movement: exceptionism. The neocons don’t mind making exceptions in their “stiff moral codes” for those who remain loyal to the broader neoconservative agenda and it’s aims - they love to overlook sin in exchange for pledges of loyalty, be they overt (such as Dick and Lynn’s) or silent (thank you, Mary Cheney). Mary Cheney’s baby changes nothing for mainstream America - the neocons will go on with their bigotry while the liberals continue to spin their wheels trying to reason with people who, on a fundamental level, simply cannot and will not be reasoned with.

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By lawlessone, May 30, 2007 at 10:50 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Websters Dictionary folks ought to post this picture next to its definition for “Hypocrite.”

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By Eric Small, May 30, 2007 at 10:37 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Robert Scheer states the obvious by keeping his argument simple, clear, and factual.  Isn’t that what we still call “good common sense?”

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By FrostedFlakes, May 30, 2007 at 9:54 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It’s truly unfortunate, but there is absolutely no way to find anything positive involving the Cheney clan. The mother, both daughters, and of course, Darth Vader are despicable. Their hypocrisy in unbelievable. No one can share joy for the further advancement of such a vile family. This time vitro-fertilization, the next time cloning.

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By Helen Rainier, May 30, 2007 at 9:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This poor baby is starting out with a lot of strikes against him—two of those are Lynn and Dick Cheney.

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By JenSonee, May 30, 2007 at 9:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

of course its right to talk about their families.  they’re in the business of greatly affecting ours.  they pass a bill negating rights for gays and lesbieans and just how many families does that affect?  mine.  god damn it. i hate these bastards.  maybe i’m a republican after all. no the left wing of this country has a lot to hate, a great deal to be angry about.  and one of those people i hate is sitting right there in that picture. the hypocritical bastard.

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By KC, May 30, 2007 at 8:48 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Someone used the terms “Klan” and “Christian”, “big fat lesbo”, and that isn’s hateful?  Other people who have posted have said incredibly hateful things also.  Has anyone posting ever really met a klansman? No.  If people on this site think they are somehow more enlightened and civil think again.  All I hear from most people is “my side is good and your side is bad, therefore I can hate you and say what I want and be hurtful because I’m right”, and they don’t make the connection between this kind of thinking and other evil thoughts that become action?  We as humans are our own enemy, and I’m no different in that respect than you.

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By Rich, May 30, 2007 at 8:35 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Gross, just the thought of them being Grandparents.

What have they contributed to society other then death, destruction, and a bleak future?

I think I’m going to be sick.

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By Gloria Picchetti, May 30, 2007 at 8:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I feel so sorry for this baby. He will always be the butt of jokes because of his bloodthirsty, liar, thief grand-father.

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By the man, May 30, 2007 at 7:52 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Wow, you folks sure do hate.
Must be tough to get through a day.

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By anonymous, May 30, 2007 at 7:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Attacking Dickhead and his family doesn’t compare to what he’s done to others and theirs and it doesn’t come close to making us like him and his ilk.  Hypocrisy is the least of his crimes.  Badmouthing the fat son of a bitch, in every way possible, is the least we can do.

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By Kathy Kang, May 30, 2007 at 7:14 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Mr.Scheer’s article makes me feel so relieved in many ways; first of all,just the fact that our hypocritical Vice president is being called exactly what he is—a “Hypocrite” while everyone else in his own party is afraid to make any negative references publically,allows me to hope that someday we Americans can see the type of blatant contradictions and hypocricy in policies that defy basic human rights and common sense. As a mother and a retired musician/educater I have seen too many decent members of our society being treated so unfairly solely due to their sexual orientations.It’s my biggest hope that the birth of Cheney’s grandson would compell him,as an adoring grandpa and just a human being,to think and do some serious soul searching. As a result,we will see a day that any loving couples can adopt abused and neglected kids regardless of their orientations. Thank you,as always,for your candid and common sense based article on important issues of our time.

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By ardee, May 30, 2007 at 6:00 am Link to this comment

I cannot help but consider that attacking the execrable Vice President on the issues is fine, but we descend into the lair of the neocon when we engage in attacks upon his family life.

There is much evidence here to show how they flock to any site that raises uncomfortable questions and obfuscate, distract, debate sans logic or fact, ignore what they cannot logically refute and generaly act like middle schoolers. The evidence is obtainable at any progressive site that allows public commentary including this one.

Do we, as progressives seeking the restoration of a decent foreign and domestic policy, wish to follow the examples of the Rovians?

I did chuckle at the Fat Bastard reference though. Anyone seeing a picture of Bill O’Dwyer, the CEO of an HMO who received well over one billion in compensation for running his company poorly, will understand that he, not Cheney, is the real Fat Bastard…...

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By Dr. Knowitall, PhD, PhD, May 30, 2007 at 5:55 am Link to this comment

Conscience isn’t a part of this picture.  In the Cheneys’ minds, it doesn’t go beyond sitting on a couch lovingly holding their grandson, a kind of metaphor, I think, for the disconnect between the Bush administration collective mind and the rest of the world.

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By THOMAS BILLIS, May 30, 2007 at 1:02 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Just what the world needs another surly hypocrtical Cheney male.Remember this the darling of the conservatives Ronald Reagan had a son who totally disagreed with his father politically and said so and tried to be an agent for change.If Mary Cheney is having problems in Virginia good tell her to get her father to try and change it or break away as Ronald Reagan Jr. and make a difference otherwise I hope they bear every fruit of hate they have sown.

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By Rick Ladd, May 29, 2007 at 11:52 pm Link to this comment

Frankly, I think it a little odd the picture doesn’t include at least Mary, if not Heather. The incongruity of the scene makes me dizzy.

And the smile on the old man . . . creepy, eh? I always expect to see a little blood mixed with spittle coming out of one corner or the other of this evil, evil man’s mouth.

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By rowdy, May 29, 2007 at 11:05 pm Link to this comment

do you think this big fat lesbo is willing to bring this child up as a right wing KKKristian? i can just hear it now;“sonny boy it is wrong to have sex with someone the same sex as yourself,it is against gods law and your mommy is going to burn in hell. me and your other mommy don’t want that for you”.

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