Peter Thiel became the first openly gay speaker to speak from a Republican convention stage in nearly 16 years.
It was a historic moment. But the Silicon Valley billionaire failed to make a strong impact because his speech was very incoherent, to say the least.
For starters, Thiel proudly talked about his sexual orientation but failed to weigh in on the Republican’s most anti-LGBT platform in history, as noted by Gawker.
For those unaware, the measures that the 2016 RNC platforms seek to legalize discrimination against LGBT people, make it harder for gay couples to adopt children and make "conversion therapy legal for minors."
He treaded lightly on the subject, saying he disagreed with some parts of his party’s policies that restrict lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights.
However, he also implied that the country should not focus on issues like gay rights and focus more on problems that concern foreign policy.
“I am proud to be gay. I am proud to be a Republican. But most of all I am proud to be an American,” began the PayPal co-founder
“When I was a kid, the great debate was about how to defeat the Soviet Union. And we won. Now we are told that the great debate is about who gets to use which bathroom,” Thiel added, referring to conservatives’ push to block transgender individuals from using the bathroom that corresponds with their gender identity. “This is a distraction from our real problems."
"Who cares?” he added, further trivializing an otherwise very important social issue.
Fortunately, there were a lot of rational minds who called out Thiel for his "who cares about LGBTQ rights" sneer.
Peter Thiel: "WHO CARES about bathrooms?" well.... the republicans who passed the bills not letting people go where they want— Dana Schwartz (@DanaSchwartzzz) July 22, 2016
Peter Thiel: Who cares about these divisive social issues, am I right??— Brian Gaar (@briangaar) July 22, 2016
[people who believe homosexuality is an abomination applaud]
Peter Thiel sneers, “Who cares?” about LGBT rights. Not in the sense they should be non-issues; but are trivial, as clearly they are to him.— Mrs. Betty Bowers (@BettyBowers) July 22, 2016
Thiel became the first openly gay speaker at the RNC since former Republican member of the United States House of Representatives for Arizona's 5th congressional district, Jim Kolbe, in 2000. The physical appearance on the stage may be historic, but Thiel didn’t utilize his identity to take on the Republican Party’s long-time anti-LGBTQ bigotry as he could’ve and should’ve.