Waymon Hudson

Obama Shows Some Pride

Filed By Waymon Hudson | June 08, 2008 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics, The Movement
Tags: Barack Obama, John McCain, Pride Month

I honestly never imagined seeing a day when a Presidential Candidate would issue a press release supporting Pride Month that not only supports the gay community, but also makes sure to include the transgender community. lgbt_logo.gifYet that is just what Obama has done:

I am proud to join with our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered brothers and sisters in celebrating the accomplishments, the lives, and the families of all LGBT people during this Pride season. Too often, the issue of LGBT rights is exploited by those seeking to divide us. But at its core, this issue is about who we are as Americans.

One of the most heartening things about Obama is that he is unafraid to include LGBT language in his speeches, no matter what the crowd. I also appreciate how he always makes sure to include "gender expression and identity." Read the rest of his statement after the jump...

It's time to live up to our founding promise of equality by treating all our citizens with dignity and respect. Let's enact federal civil rights legislation to outlaw hate crimes and protect workers against discrimination based upon sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. Let's repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell and demonstrate that the most effective and professional military in the world is open to all Americans who are ready and willing to serve our country. Let's treat the relationships and the families of LGBT Americans with full equality under the law.

We are ready to accomplish these goals because of the courage and persistence of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people who have are working every day to achieve equal rights. The gay couple who demand equal treatment in our family laws as they raise their children; the lesbian soldier who wants nothing more than to serve her country openly and honestly; the transgendered workers who asks for the simple dignity of being judged by the quality of their work. Generations of LGBT Americans, at once ordinary and extraordinary, have made possible this moment in our history. With leadership and hard work, we can fulfill the promise of equality for all.

Can you imagine McCain issuing a statement like this? Hardly.

For the first time in my lifetime, I feel like we might have a seat at the table and a candidate that understands the underlying issues facing the LGBT community.


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Now, if a quarter of gay and lesbian identified voters go and vote for mccain,, I'll have a few stern words here at TBP about that.

This campaign, the marriage equality decisions in Massachusetts and California, the grassroots uprising in favor of a United ENDA... I'm feeling more optimistic about this country than I ever have before. Yes, there are problems to be solved, but I feel like we've turned some important corner.

I keep walking around thinking of Tony Kushner's prophetic line from Angels in America: Perestroika, "The world only spins forward. We will be citizens. The time has come."

radthinker | June 8, 2008 6:01 PM

Wow. I am not impressed. it was not that long ago that BO would not sit/meet with Mayor of SF, Gavin Newsome. Remember the concert-rally with gospel singer Donnie McKlurkin, and the whoe X-gay movement? Yeah, that was only last year. But Bo realizes he must pander the gay vote. Well, I'm gay and I'm not ready to vote BO. He has not made a believer out of me. I believe what the DNC did by refusing to validate the "fair reflection" of the will of the people from Michigan, will come back to haunt this party in November.

Not bashing anyone, just expressing my right to differ. Hillary was and is a better candidate. I do not hang my head low when I say this. I am proud because I do know the difference between what is right and wrong with this country. Overall, Americans are good people at heart. Unfortunately some are misguided. It is against these misguided forces that we must wage a campaign of liberty and justice for all.

Obama camp has lots of work to do before e can get elected. On its face, his "selection",( not election) as presumptive nominee is seen as illegitimate by many... a lot can happen on the way to the convention.

Alex, anyone who is even remotely related to the GLBT community who'd even consider voting for McCain needs to be examined and treated for cranial rectosis.

Obama wasn't my first choice, but as a community, it would seem we got a good one.

radthinker | June 8, 2008 6:37 PM

Polar:

I am queer. Is that close enough for you. I never said I would vote for McCain. Just not ready to vote BO. It is my right. Insults will not get me to vote for him. Duh.

Have a nice day

I've heard a lot of comments about FL and MI from Hillary supporters and how their votes should have been counted as is. I'm wondering who you all square that away with:

1. The fact that she and her campaign were fully on board with not seating their delegates if they moved their primaries forward.

2. The fact that Obama and the other front-runners minus Clinton weren't even on the ballot in Michigan, when there were clearly people who wanted to vote for him (uncommitteds, people who wrote him in and had their ballots thrown out, exit polls all show evidence that there were some people in Michigan who wanted to vote for him).

I'm just wondering if the MI and FL arguments from the Clinton camp are process arguments substituting for sour grapes or if there's really something there.

"Can you imagine McCain issuing a statement like this?"

McCain? Hell, I can't even imagine Hillary issuing a statement like this! It underscores why I've been an Obama supporter since it became clear that Dennis Kucinich was (once again) not a viable candidate.

We need a community organizer, an activist, someone who's not afraid to say what he really believes (at least most of the time), in the White House. For us, Obama is the best of all possible worlds, given the way things are now. For me, the most important thing about Obama is that I feel confident that he gets it, he gets us. He understands that the issue of LGB and especially T civil rights isn't just a political problem, it's a social and economic one as well for hundreds of thousands, perhaps even millions, of us.

Because I know, because of his community organizer history, Barack Obama understands the real life impact of being unemployed and being discriminated against(I have no such confidence that the same is true of either Hillary or McCain) I am more confident he will give the issue the importance it deserves when he takes office than I feel would likely be the case otherwise.

Obama understands discrimination and its real-world effects, and so I'm betting he'll be motivated to do something about it as President. On that score, I firmly believe that Obama's nomination and eventual Presidency will pave the way for LGBT people in terms of making the kind of political progress we've all worked so hard toward.

Jere, love the quote from Angels.

Waymon, you're such a believer, you might make a believer out of me. ;^) You're like my own little Charlotte.

I'm not understanding the ["fair reflection" of the will of the people from Michigan] statement. Please correct me if I'm wrong but I remember there was only 1 Democratic candidate on the MI ballot. How can this be a "fair reflection of the will of the people" if voters wanted to vote for candidate(s) who were not on the ballot?

As for Florida there were many Democrats who didn't vote in our primary because we were told our votes wouldn't count. Although we had record numbers of Florida Democratic voters turn out I know many voters who only voted for the property tax amendment, not for a presidential candidate.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | June 9, 2008 12:59 AM

Anyone who was a Clinton Supporter who cannot support Obama ought to also read Bruce Parker's "know thy contributor" above. Just saying we need to look at people, not our preconceptions of them. Who can say what lurks in the dark corners of all our minds when we form attitudes about people.

Yeah, the K-Man was on the ballot, but him, her, and uncommitted aren't really the full array of choices. Marcy Wheeler provides a good recap of why they decided the way they did.

In the conference call the other night with Steve Hildebrand, the acronym "GLBT" was used fairly often during the conversation, but the word "transgender" was used it at the very end of it.

I have firm belief that Senator Obama understands the concerns many in the trans community face on a daily basis, and he will take action to address these issues once he is in the White House.

I wonder if anyone out there in Bilerico Land would dispute the following: Senator Obama is the candidate most supportive of GLBT rights who ever became the presumptive nominee of a major political party.

I told Tobias Wolf of his campaign staff that I will work for the election of Senator Obama as if my life depended on it because the lives of many trans persons does, in fact, depend on his election to become our next President.

I don't think the choice could be any clearer this year.


Rad: Get off the train, you're missing the station. I believe Polar said:

Alex, anyone who is even remotely related to the GLBT community who'd even consider voting for McCain needs to be examined and treated for cranial rectosis.

He's talking to Alex. Not you. You say in your 2nd comment that you're not going to vote for McCain. So he really isn't talking about you, is he?

So why the sense of slight? Why think he's attacking you or demeaning you? I think you're taking offense at something that has nothing to do with you. It's as if you're grasping at straws to find ways to blame Obama and give him a reason not to win your trust.

Personally I look at it this way. Obama wasn't my 1st choice. He is now. If Clinton had won, she'd be my 1st choice now. Why? Because here are the options:

1) Vote Obama: Get a President friendly to the LGBT community. Hell, he's even guest posted here on TBP. My life improves under Obama.
2) Vote McCain: He's not gay friendly and would be a continuation of BushCo. My life would not improve under McCain.
3) Not vote at all: This helps McCain to win the nomination and so sends us back to option 2.

The choice is clear. We need to advance our community; therefore, I'll be voting for Obama.

Now, change the names around and insert Clinton for Obama. The options would remain the same and I'd choose #1 again.

While Obama is not my first choice due to his religious influenced belief that marriage should be for a man and a woman, he is our best choice at this time. The true fight lies within ourselves to hold him to his pledge to obtain the goals he claims he wants for LGBTs. He claims his goal is for equal rights, well, equal rights means equal marriage!

Bill Perdue Bill Perdue | June 9, 2008 12:37 PM

Obama’s presidency will be a repeat of the failed Nixon Presidency. Obama, like Nixon, is a consummate liar. The voters will expect a lot of him and when he fails to deliver…

He won’t end the war, which remains the central question of US politics. He said so himself. Asked if he’d promise to have the U.S. military out of Iraq by January 2013 -- more than five years from now, he said. "I think it would be irresponsible (to state that).” Continuing the war is lunacy and murder but he’ll do it. Just like Nixon.

The economy is in a steep nosedive and the bad news is that it might crash and burn (and good luck to all of us if it does). Both Democrats and Republicans support tax breaks for the rich, union busting schemes like NAFTA, deregulation of corporate predators and other policies that are directly responsible for the economic crisis. Obama’s big contributors, Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers and JP Morgan Chase and Company are all deeply involved in the foreclosure/sub prime disaster that threatens everyone’s standard of living.

The backdrop for Watergate was an economic crisis fueled by the war in Vietnam. Just substitute Iraq to bring it up to date. Just like Nixon.

Obama and McCain are both lap dogs for the HMO’s and Big Pharma and opposed to socialized medicine. The health care crisis is a vital concern to most Americans. Obama is on the wrong side and will stay there.

Both parties are run by bigots but in the last two years the Democrats ran Congress and they hit the "DELETE" button whenever we were mentioned. They refused to repeal DOMA and DADT, gutted ENDA and then junked it and the Matthew Shepard hate crimes bill (AFTER it passed both Houses of Congress). They mulishly oppose same sex marriage even though polls show the public is moving in our direction.

Like all Democratic candidates Obama is far to the right of most Americans. The more he lies and the more popular he becomes the more likely it is that his presidency will fail.

That is assuming he can get past the Bradley Effect. The Clintons exploitation of race baiting was hit and miss but the Republicans are past masters of that kind of filth and the racists are coming out of the woodwork for this election. The racists running the Republican Party have already done polling to see how much they can get away with.

Bil,

I think it's important to recognize that there are more than those three choices you mentioned. A Clinton supporter who cannot bring themselves to vote for Obama might consider Cynthia McKinney (Green) or Ralph Nader (Independent). I would say that either of those two choices are far more in line with the values of the Clinton campaign than McCain will ever be.

I'd rather see all the Clinton supporters vote for Obama, but if they won't, I'd rather see them support third party liberals than vote for McSame or not vote at all.