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By Julia Rosen

It’s a relatively slow news day, so I figured that I’d update a few news stories in gay politics today.

First off is a campaign our sister organization the Courage Campaign is running, with friends at Open Left, CREDO Mobile and AMERICAblog. It’s a “Dear John” style letter to the Democrats, expressing disappointment with the progress on legislation, particularly Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and the Employee Non-Discrimination Act. If it speaks to how you are feeling you can add your name to it. Here is how it starts.

Dear Democrats,

We need to talk.

This may be a hard letter to read, but I need to figure out if this relationship is still healthy for me.

Speaking of DADT, the big news today is that Senator Nelson will not be voting in favor of repeal next week when amendments the defense authorization bill are voted on by Armed Services Committee. He wants to wait until the Gate/Mullens report is done in December.

This is not particularly surprising news. Nelson was a target, but not a particularly likely one. There is still a chance that repeal passes the committee next week, but the votes are not lined up yet. The most intriguing possibility is that the language that makes it into the must pass defense authorization bill is would be delayed implementation of the repeal. AKA an amendment would be added to the defense bill that states DADT would be repealed at a later date, after Gates/Mullen are done with their study.

John Aravosis over at AMERICAblog is continuing to pick apart the White House/DNC’s claims that the administration has done significant and meaningful things when it comes to advancing LGBT rights.

40 Comments

  • 1. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:08 am

    I have signed the letter, and so has my husband. We have also fowarded it to our friends, as well as my postng it on FB.

  • 2. JonT  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:12 am

    I wasn't sure about that 'letter'. I went ahead and 'signed' it of course, but really – what does it really accomplish?

    I have to be honest: When I voted for Obama, I was not under the illusion that he really gave much of a crap about gay people (other than their votes/donations). I was convinced that he would veto something like DOMA if something like it ever made it to his desk.

    I would like to see the Dems actually do something substantive regarding LGBT rights, but really, what's the alternative?

    Vote republican? At least the dems smile when they ignore you. Most republicans would probably want us rounded up and 're-educated' in christian anti-homo camps, run by Dr. Rekers :)

    I believe the dems are generally trying, but I'm not too surprised that we are not front and center of their agenda. Makes sense to keep pushing them, but let's keep in mind how things would be going if the other party was still in power.

    Had a couple of laughs while reading aravosis's blog entry, especially: "… Is this your approach to dating – telling a guy he should date you because you don't beat your spouse nearly as much as the guy he went out with before?"

    :)

  • 3. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:17 am

    signed…sealed…delivered….I'm GAYYYYYY….. ; ) ….Ronnie

  • 4. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:19 am

    Must see TV…..

    What Would You Do? Gay Parents
    What would you do if you saw a waiter harassing a gay couple with children at a diner? ABC finds out using hidden cameras at a diner in Brooklyn. What Would You Do?

    Tonight on ABC…check your local listings for times and channels…..hehehehe…. ; ) …..Ronnie
    http://abcnews.go.com/WhatWouldYouDo/waiter-haras

  • 5. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:20 am

    I'd kick is @$$$$$$…… > [ ….Ronnie

  • 6. JonT  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:21 am

    Wow, really? I don't have TV, but if there's a clip on the net somewhere, I'd love to see it. Especially, I'd like to see how ABC presents it. Was it staged or real?

  • 7. JonT  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:23 am

    hehe – should have read the link. Will still look forward to seeing it.

  • 8. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:25 am

    I'm not sure….Its on at 10pm Eastern time….I think the set up is staged….that's the idea of the show and the other patrons or on-lookers are in the dark about whats going on…<3…Ronnie

  • 9. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 10:34 am

    you know what….I was a little quick in my answer to what I would do….I'd give him a "tip" instead….. > ) ….Ronnie

  • 10. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 19, 2010 at 11:59 am

    Have the TV on ABC. Cougar Town just went off. Getting ready for the REAL show!

  • 11. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 12:01 pm

    Me too…. : ) ….Ronnie

  • 12. JonT  |  May 19, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    Richard: Cougar Town? Really? :)

    WTF is that? heh.

  • 13. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    grrrrrrowl….hehehehe…<3…Ronnie

  • 14. Jorge  |  May 19, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    Thank goodness I read this. Now watching what would you do. Just missed 5 mins. :)

  • 15. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    "I have a mind to knock that guy out"…..young straight guy who stood up for the Gay Fathers…….he's good people…..<3…Ronnie

  • 16. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    "My parent were survivors of the Holocaust…I'll be damned if I let someone speak like that"….he said something like that…another straight man who stood up for the Lesbian Mothers……he's good people too

    what is shameful…out of about 100 patrons….just about a dozen said something in support of the couples

    > [ …. SHAME…..Ronnie.

  • 17. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 19, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    All I know is that it stars Courtney Cox Arquette, and was in its last few minutes when I turned the TV on and went to our local ABC affiliate.
    Ronnie, thanks for the heads-up about tonight's special episode of "What Would You Do? " Yes, we watched it, and the ones wo impressed me the most in that set up were the man whose parents survived the death camps of the Holocaust, the interracial couple, the young man with the switchblade necklace, and the Ukranian woman. It is so nice to know that there are some people who will stand up for what is right, even if they are currently outnumbered by those who just do nothing.

  • 18. Ronnie  |  May 19, 2010 at 1:06 pm

    You're welcome dopty-dad

    but then there was the hypocrite who changed his tune once he knew the camera's were on him…Bigot…he said all the usuals when he didn't know he was being taped…uggggg….. >[ …..Ronnie

  • 19. Kathleen  |  May 19, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    I signed it, but would have like mention of DOMA in it. Obama has said he thinks it's bad policy, yet has done nothing to repeal it.

  • 20. Kathleen  |  May 19, 2010 at 2:06 pm

    Kern High School Board Rejects Harvey Milk Day
    http://www.turnto23.com/southwest_county/23613728

    cowards, bigots; shame, shame on them. and the comments following the article are disgusting.

  • 21. JonT  |  May 19, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    For shame indeed.

    But the comments, at least the phoby ones, actually seemed more stupid than insulting :)

    I think one of the commentors commented on that :)

  • 22. Joel  |  May 19, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    Who WAS that guy on "What Would You Do"? The guy with the Brooklyn accent and the parents who were Holocaust survivors? We need HIM as a national spokesman!

  • 23. Gregory in Salt Lake  |  May 19, 2010 at 11:54 pm

    Off topic but sad :( — 14 years of prison for loving someone…
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/africa/10130240….

  • 24. Phillip R  |  May 20, 2010 at 12:30 am

    I read the article over on the other blog about Obama's GLBT 'achievements' if you will. I voted for him. Would I vote for him again knowing what I know how? Sure…he was a better option than McCain. However, I've always been a firm believer that a man's worth is based on his deeds. Deeds will always show the truth behind someone…not words.

    That being said, I don't feel like Obama will push any gay rights. There's too much of an uproar about him at the moment and he's keeping his nose clean for next election. We'll hear lots of fancy wordplay but I don't expect much of anything. If he wins a second term, that may be a different story.

  • 25. David Kimble  |  May 20, 2010 at 1:25 am

    Hmm…the news that Kern High School Board rejects Harvey Milk Day really does not come as a surprise. Kern County is also home to Ashburn (the Senator, who was arrested for driving drunk, when he had left a gay bar there was also a young man in the car with him.) Conservatives seem to rule in Kern County (incidently, I live in S.E. Kern County, where I live with my 88 year old mother.) <3 David

  • 26. Mark  |  May 20, 2010 at 1:56 am

    Anything that happens in Kern County does not surprise me either. I bet they wanted to reject Martin Luther King Day as well.

  • 27. Mark  |  May 20, 2010 at 3:38 am

    I agree with JonT…Obama doesn't really give much of a crap about gay people other than our votes and donations. I, for one, will not vote for him in 2012 unless he does a 180 and starts doing something for our community. He is either for us, or against us. And I am tired of politicians that will not take a stand for equal rights.

  • 28. fiona64  |  May 20, 2010 at 6:11 am

    I didn't see this episode, but I did see the one where the set-up was a young girl being given as a bride to a much older man in what was obviously an FLDS type situation.

    A few people cut their eyes at the table while the men did their negotiating very loudly … and only one person (a woman) stood up and approached the table when the men left the girl alone. She went over and asked if she wanted the police called, etc., and read the riot act to both men when they returned.

    Love,
    Fiona

  • 29. Fluffyskunk  |  May 20, 2010 at 7:16 am

    Why no mention of DOMA? Seriously people, our #1 objective and we're happy just begging for more crumbs off the Resolute Desk? Whatever happened to wanting the whole cake? DADT affects far less people than DOMA (tell me honestly, if neither you nor your spouse are in uniform, how much would it affect your life if they repealed it tomorrow? Hands up if the answer isn't "diddly-squat") and while I agree it's important to eradicate all forms of discrimination, DADT included, I have a feeling it's being used as a red herring to stop us talking about DOMA. Successfully, I might add, since we're not even mentioning it in "our" letter to the Democrats. :-/

  • 30. JonT  |  May 20, 2010 at 10:08 am

    Wow – finally got to see this (had to use win XP in a virtual machine, but oh well – guess linux/firefox isn't acceptable to ABC :)

    Quote: That's the kind of mentality that sent Jews to the death camps.

    Wow. Disappointing that so few said anything, but the ones who did. Man. Made me proud :)

    Thanks for the heads-up on this Ronnie :)

  • 31. Ronnie  |  May 20, 2010 at 10:13 am

    you're welcome JonT….<3…Ronnie

  • 32. JonT  |  May 20, 2010 at 11:10 am

    Mark – I would probably vote for him in 2012 regardless of what he accomplishes WRT GLBT rights.

    He is the lesser of the two evils in that at least he does not actively advocate for more GLBT hatred, unlike the republicans. It sucks, but right now, it's what we have.

    Sorry if I smell like a sell-out, but I'm also a realist.

  • 33. Andrea  |  May 20, 2010 at 11:47 am

    If Obama didn't care, it would be an improvement. He's actually malevolent. McClurkin. Warren. Hell-o???

  • 34. Andrea  |  May 20, 2010 at 11:58 am

    There's no mention of DOMA because it was signed into law by Bill Clinton – a Democrat. Thus, no other Democrat can repeal DOMA. Only a Republican can. Except they won't either. A Libertarian is what we need.

  • 35. JonT  |  May 20, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    Andrea – yes – Obama is not exactly the 'fierce advocate' for GLBT rights he said he was going to be – it does not seem to be a big item on his TODO list. But, consider the alternative of McCain/Palin?

    Do you really think we'd be better off there? None of this stuff (DOMA, DADT, ENDA) would be even under discussion.

    I'm not giving Obama a pass on his GLBT record, but I'm guessing that deep down inside, he knows what bigotry is.

    That's something the current republican crop simply cannot understand – as they have no experience with that kind of hatred/bigotry.

    At least from the receiving side.

    Don't get me wrong – I'm willing to push Obama as best I can, but I know who my enemies are, and I do not think Obama is one of them.

  • 36. Carvel  |  May 20, 2010 at 12:31 pm

    Any president can advocate the repeal of DOMA and DADT regardless of political party. Nobody wants to repeal it because nobody wants to take a stand. The problem is that Obama is not the lesser of two evils. What is worse, a liar or someone who hates us. I think the answer if that we should support an honest bigot rather than a two faced liar. That way the democrats know that if they don't keep their promises they can not count on us. Otherwise they will continue to lie to us and think they can count on our vote.

  • 37. Ronnie  |  May 20, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    I think maybe I would prefer someone who was trying to do something…at least making promises….than someone who is actively trying and helping to create laws that target LGBT Americans….I mean Obama isn't doing much but he's not creating laws that target us….what if McLame and Falin had won…there might've been more laws at the federal level that target us by now….. : / ….Ronnie

  • 38. Richard A. Walter (s  |  May 20, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    Yes, there would have. Especially since Falin has stated in public that Uganda has the right idea about LGBTQQIA's. Obama may not be doing everything he can, but at least he isn't trying to turn us into death squad fodder.

  • 39. JonT  |  May 20, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    Carvel – do you really believe that Obama hates GLBT people, but is just lying for votes/donations? I do not believe that for an instant. I hope you really do not either.

    On one hand, his various justice dept defenses of DOMA are appalling. But they're getting better, and he has deny-ability :)

    But as someone who has undoubtedly experienced bigotry – I cannot believe he advocates that kind of hatred for GLBT people.

    He does not actively advocate for oppression of the GLBT community. That *is* the lesser of two evils IMO.

    McCain/Palin – wow, I think I'd be in a re-education camp by now :)

  • 40. Dan Hess  |  May 20, 2010 at 1:22 pm

    McCain's more of a moderate than anything. He's hardly going to advocate for gay rights, but he wouldn't go for oppression either. Palin, though, is another story. I can't stand that bitch and McCain's VP choice made me completely question his judgment.

    Obama, on the other hand, at least is slightly supportive. Even if he'll try to delay everything until January 2013. Still, he's not a terrible president on most things and I think we can get him to see the light on some other issues.

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