I wasn’t intending to attend CPAC this year, because I’m too busy with writing projects. But even if I were, I would have to reconsider, considering the treatment being given GOProud by the organization’s leaders.

No matter how you stand on same-sex marriage, the exclusion of GOProud from CPAC is perilously close to a suicide pill for the conservative movement and ultimately for the Republican Party.

For young people especially (and I’m almost talking under age forty here) gay marriage is a fait accompli – and this is true for many of those same youths who are completely simpatico with conservatives on fiscal and foreign policy issues.

CPAC is quite simply turning off a large portion of the coming generation while handing their opponents a club to bash them with. They are marginalizing themselves.

The GOP will be forever the party of homophobic rubes who deny people condoms and justify rape.

All of this is nonsense, of course. But CPAC, by deflating the big tent and keeping GOProud out, has given liberal propagandists just what they need to keep the smear campaign going.

To make matters worse, this dispute has been going on for several years now. I was involved in it some time ago, allied with the late Andrew Breitbart. I am stunned that the CPAC leadership is still so obstinate they cannot contain, in the psychological sense, this diversity of opinion.

Indeed, social conservatives, of all people, should understand how most of us form opinions about our personal and emotional lives. Do we want these things to be legislated by Congress at all? Are these private religious and social values properly the realm of the state? Or are they more properly and efficaciously dealt with on a more intimate level by family, friends, clergy and doctors?

They are for me. And I suspect I am not exceptional in that regard. Most of us prefer a realm of privacy in our personal lives without the intrusion of Big Brother.