"Every American has a unique identity. I am proud to be gay. I am proud to be a Republican. But most of all, I am proud to be an American," Thiel said, to applause.
Thiel, who made news recently for admitting that he was helping fund lawsuits against Gawker, said that Americans have to focus on the larger issues rather than "fake culture wars."
“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. This is a distraction from our real problems. Who cares?” Thiel said.
Thiel is not the first openly gay man to speak at a Republican convention, but the last such man spoke 16 years ago.