Michael Crawford

Black Voters Not to Blame if Proposition 8 Passes

Filed By Michael Crawford | September 22, 2008 4:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, Politics, The Movement
Tags: Barack Obama, California, election 2008, gay marriage, LGBT Rights, NYT, Prop. 8, Race

A troubling New York Times article on Proposition 8, the proposed California anti-marriage constitutional amendment, asserts that some marriage supporters are concerned that strong support for Sen. Barack Obama's presidential candidacy among Black voters may spell trouble for efforts to defeat the proposal to take away marriage rights for same-sex couples.

Mr. Obama, the Democratic presidential nominee, is against the measure. But opponents of the proposed ban worry that many black voters, enthused by Mr. Obama's candidacy but traditionally conservative on issues involving homosexuality, could pour into voting stations in record numbers to punch the Obama ticket -- and then cast a vote for Proposition 8.

"It's a Catch-22," said Andrea Shorter, the campaign director of And Marriage for All, a coalition of gay and civil rights groups that recently started what it calls an education campaign around the state, focusing on blacks and framing the issue of same-sex marriage as one of civil rights.

While the possibility that some African-American voters may oppose our fight for equality seems to have caught some white LGBT activists by surprise, it seems that the proponents of marriage discrimination have anticipated this opportunity to capitalize on homophobia among some in the Black and Latino communities.

The Obama/Proposition 8 situation appeals to those opposed to same-sex marriage, who are banking on a high turnout by blacks and conservative Latinos. "There's no question African-American and Latino voters are among our strongest supporters," said Frank Schubert, the co-campaign manager for Yes on 8, the leading group behind the measure. "And to the extent that they are motivated to get to the polls, whether by this issue or by Barack Obama, it helps us."

This article is troubling for a number of reasons:

  1. It ties historic electoral enthusiasm among Black voters to an anti-gay proposal put forth by white evangelical conservatives and strongly suggests that anticipated strong voter turnout among African-Americans will have a negative impact on the advancement of LGBT equality. This theme negates the fact that the marriage repeal effort is being lead and funded by white conservatives including leaders within the Mormon Church who have never been supporters of issues that benefit African-Americans and have instead simply seen Black people as a monolithic mass only useful as a constituency to be targeted with fear, lies and anti-gay spin. In similar ways white conservatives have sought to stoke tensions between Black and Latino people as a way of building support for anti-immigrant measures under the guise that providing legal rights and social services to undocumented workers will mean fewer opportunities for African-Americans.
  2. The writer of the article seems to forget that whites are a majority of voters in the state and that if the amendment to strip marriage away from same-sex couples is successful it will be because a lot of white voters voted against equal treatment under the law for gay couples. It is true that a majority of Black and Latino voters may end up voting against us on marriage, but according to the Public Policy Institute of California Black voters account for about 6% of voters in most statewide elections and Latino voters account for roughly 15% of votes cast. Together Black and Latino voters account for about 21% percent of votes. Even if every Black and Latino voter votes for Proposition 8, 21% of the vote is not nearly enough for the anti-gay amendment to pass. It would still need strong support from white voters.
  3. The article and thinking among some white activists on both sides of the proposed amendment falls into "Black community as voting monolith" frame that sees Black voters as a kind of electoral Borg in which we all think the same and vote the same. Nothing, of course, could be further from the truth. That thinking does, however, make it possible for some to see outreach to communities of color as an afterthought only to be performed in the closing weeks of a campaign if at all. Then, the lack of success in persuading a majority of voters of color of the important connections between LGBT issues and the larger civil rights movement is talked about as the result of an especially virulent strain of homophobia in communities of color rather than as a failure to aggressively target voters of color with persuasive messages.

The article does go on to cite the critical work of the Barbara Jordan/Bayard Rustin Coalition, an organization of Black LGBT people and allies:

"This is black people talking to black people," said Ron Buckmire, the board president of the Barbara Jordan/Bayard Rustin Coalition, a gay rights group in Los Angeles. "We're saying, 'Gay people are black and black people are gay. And if you are voting conservative on an antigay ballot measure, you are hurting the black community.' "

Unfortunately work like this, efforts among LGBT people of color to dialogue with and work within communities of color, are among those given the least amount of resources and investment by LGBT organizations even as it becomes increasingly clear the key role that people of color can play in advancing LGBT civil rights. It is also clear that the work to build the necessary coalitions that strengthen the potential ties between communities of color and LGBT communities is something that needs to occur before we are facing a political crisis and not in the final hours of a campaign.


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William D. Lindsey William D. Lindsey | September 22, 2008 4:24 PM

Michael, excellent article, making points we in the LGBT community really need to hear.

I especially like your conclusion that LGBT organizations need to give more resources to organizations creating dialogue between the gay community and people of color.

Homophobia and racism are two-way streets. Just as the African-American community needs to address homophobia, the gay community needs to address racism.

All of us who experience marginalization and oppression have too much to lose by not trying to work and talk across the lines that divide us. It's in the interest of those oppressing us to keep us at each others' throats.

I lived in California for 20 odd years and participated in the fights to defeat right wing prppositions, beginningn in 1978 with the Briggs Initiative, which would have made it illegal for GLBT folks to be teachers.

The people I'm in touch with in GLBT left and GLBT Labor groups in California are afraid that the No on 8 campaign will not have as one of it’s primary goals an orientation towards the African American and immigrant communities, who comprise a huge part of California’s population and which are infested with bigoted christist cults.

We can’t afford to abandon this key battleground to the cults. We have to offset the damage done to us by the bigot-pandering of Obama and McCain, who never fail to mention that they (and god) agree that were second class citizens not worthy of being married.

It doesn’t matter a bit if Obama pretends to oppose Prop. 8 if continues repeating that pandering garbage and if his campaign competes with us in fundraising. If he’s serious he ought to donate $5 or $6 million to No on 8 so we can catch up with the amount raised by the bigots, who are, as always, cheered and emboldened by his and McCain’s pandering.

What I didn't like about this article was how it was completely devoid of facts. It just asked activists working in these areas what they thought blacks were going to do, but I didn't read anything about polling in it.

Especially annoying was that they just tacked on "latino" to some of the sentences without all that much thought, as if all minorities vote the same all the time or something like that.

Does anyone know about any actually polling on this issue, about how african-americans view same sex marriage, broken down by education level, geographic region, etc.? I know that the last PPIC study in California showed that latino and non-latino white voters in that state supported prop 8 at about the same level. Not that anyone noticed.

Some numbers were crunched back in August. Age, gender, party affiliation and church attendence are all better predicting factors than race:

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-stewart14-2008aug14,0,7258583.story

Thanks for the link. It's from a month ago, and here's a bit of what it says:

That notion will be put to the test Nov. 4, when black voters in California -- expected to turn out in record numbers to support Obama -- also will face a proposition to put a ban on same-sex marriage in the state Constitution. The foregone conclusion, expressed by prominent gay journalist Andrew Sullivan and others, is that this means trouble for gay newlyweds.

Don't bet on it. Although ordinary polls report lower levels of support for same-sex marriage among blacks than among whites, views on same-sex marriage are a rapidly moving target that's tough to pin down, even for experts.

And a funny thing happened on the way to the ballot box in the last presidential election. When constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage were on 11 state ballots in November 2004, blacks in Arkansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Ohio and Oklahoma were at least one percentage point less likely than whites to vote for them, according to CNN exit polls. Only in Georgia were blacks slightly more likely to vote for the amendment. (The remaining four states had too few blacks to make a meaningful comparison.)

Blacks, like whites, are divided on the issue. In March 2000, when Californians voted on Proposition 22 (the statutory ban on gay marriage that the state Supreme Court struck down in May), a Los Angeles Times exit poll showed that levels of support were very similar among the major ethnic groups, with Latinos slightly more opposed to allowing gays to marry, Asians and whites slightly less opposed, and blacks right in the middle.

It goes on to point out how the congressional black caucus is our staunchest group of supporters in the Congress.

Not that any of this matters. This article isn't coming from a place of fact, it isn't discussing polling or anything else. It called up a few activists and asked them how they felt about black voters (and sometimes latino ones). That proves nothing.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | September 22, 2008 6:04 PM

Together Black and Latino voters account for about 21% percent of votes.

If those folks voted together, it would be a hugely significant block. What I hear you saying, however, is they don't. It's not really a block but a group of diverse people.

According to the last Field poll I read on Prop 8, 55% of voters were opposed, 38% in favor, and 7% undecided. Thing is, advertising hasn't hit the airwaves yet, so how solid are those numbers?

Both sides are doing everything they can to win over the 7% of undecided voters.

And good points about polling, Alex!

Excellent article, but one quibble: white voters in California are a plurality, not a majority. Non-Hispanic whites come in at 43.1% of the state's population as of 2006.

Now, of course, this doesn't necessarily reflect who will actually vote. But we won't know that until November 5th when the exit polls come in.

I am a married California resident that supports EqualityForAll.com thanks to an introduction from equalitygiving.com. No matter how you feel personally as a black man thinking that with money you can get in those black and hispanic churches and educate minds as to what the Bible really says about being gay, you should still encourage others to vote No on Proposition 8.

Michael Crawford Michael Crawford | September 23, 2008 7:49 AM

Charles,

I am less interested in educating people about what the bible says about homosexuality than I am in seeing Prop. 8 defeated.

I also do not think that churches are the only places to reach Black and Latino voters. That's like saying that the only places you will find gay voters is in bars and clubs.

My point is that Black voters, like any other demographic, is not a monolith and we shouldn't be treated that way.

Michael
Obama's statement on marriage "god is in the mix" points to religion. The L.A. Times had an article similar to your views. I don't know the demographics, so I have to rely on what I read by the NoOnProp8 organizers. Hope they are wrong.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | September 23, 2008 2:27 AM

I do not believe that all Blacks are conservative about homosexuality. There are just too many Gay Black people around.

Further, the term Hispanic/Latino comprises two main languages and multiple cultural and ethnic traditions. These people do not vote as an unthinking block of people. In my Chicago neighborhood it meant an entirely different outlook if you were Guatemalan vs Mexican or Puerto Rican vs Cuban or Brazilian vs anyone.

As they love their own freedom they should love ours and that is the central message they need to hear.

Thanks Michael, very thought provoking.

Or, we mostly white gay people could stop framing marriage as a 'civil right' and start talking about it for what it is: a privileged institution that leaves countless families behind, no matter what genders are allowed to claim it.

There's a reason lower-income and people of color--many whom are living in extended families or single motherhood--look at us like we're crazy when we say "We just want what EVERY family has..."

Michael Crawford Michael Crawford | September 23, 2008 7:51 AM

"stop framing marriage as a 'civil right' and start talking about it for what it is: a privileged institution"

You have fun with that. Meanwhile the rest of us will continue to fight for equal treatment under the law.

I'll step on the landmine. I disagree with your post, Michael.

Latino and black voters tend to be more conservative in their vote. Several black churches constantly rail against homosexuality just like the evangelical churches. While black pastors aren't taking the lead on Prop 8, I highly doubt they aren't helping.

I didn't find "Latino" to be tacked on occasionally. I saw the article as aimed at the black and latino communities - both of which are voting blocks similar to the LGBT community, women, white men, hockey moms, etc. While not every single black person will vote with the pack, we have our own Log Cabin Republicans. That still doesn't negate the fact that most queers will vote Democratic. We can quibble about stereotypes all we want, but our quibbling won't mean jack shit when the vote totals come in; that's what counts.

If the Prop 8 supporters are able to stoke the fires of homophobia that lie under the surface in the black and latino communities, they'll have a large voting block swinging their way. They'll also need to ensure that white evangelicals and social conservatives also vote in favor of the proposition. The easiest way to get any voting block to pull the lever against equality is to paint the opposition with stereotypes and attempt to bring any possible stereotypes to the forefront.

While we bicker over whether or not stereotypes are true and whether certain voting blocks are monolithic, proponents will ruthlessly use those same stereotypes to whip our asses if we're not careful.

Michael Crawford Michael Crawford | September 23, 2008 8:02 AM

Bil,

I will step right back. I disagree with you. Several Black churches don't equal the whole Black community just as several LGBT groups don't equal the whole LGBT community. Just do a quick search of HRC on Bilerico and you will see the differences of opinion.

Also, check out some of the great reporting by Karen Ocamb about who is funding Prop. 8. It is far and wide white evangelicals and Mormons. For the record, the Mormons have a history of disliking Black as much as they dislike LGBT people.

I do agree that while we talk about whether or not certain stereotypes are true our opponents will try to use those perceived stereotypes to whip our asses. That's all the more reason that LGBT groups need to stop tacking on outreach to communities of color as an afterthought.

It could have been easily predicted that the anti-gay white evangelicals would try to stoke homophobia within communities of color in order to repeal marriage. That's my point. Our side should have been better prepared and we should have learned from past lessons.

The vote count, which is the only real thing that matters, could be different with smart, aggressive and well-funded outreach to different voter demographics including voters of color.

I suppose we could "bicker" back and forth over things like "facts" and "reality," but you're right, people are going to believe what they want to believe.

I think it may have been more productive to have had an article about the racism in thinking that black and latino voters are automatically more homophobic than white ones. While, as the article linked to above pointed out that there's a slight difference among Californians of different races an ethnicities, it's not as big as white gays think it is. Why can't we acknowledge that racism plays a part in that stereotyping?

There are plenty of racist, white gay folks who just love to paint men of color as the enemy and the white race as the savior of LGBT people. And then when we lose in battles like these, as Michael pointed out, people of color get blamed and the narrative that white=safe continues.

After reading through comments to date, I mostly agree with Alex: We need polling figures, either before the vote or exit polls after, to determine whether this line of thinking is correct. Without this data, we are just speculating about stereotypes.

However, I disagree that characterizing certain ethnicities with tendencies to vote this way or that way is intrinsically racist: if past voting stats clearly support such trends, then we are merely being good statisticians, not racists.

Again, such data seems not to be available in this instance.

i agree it's wrong to blame prop 8's success on the anti-gay bigotry of black voters. but i'm pointing a big finger at the Obama campaign that did as close to nothing as possible to defeat it when they could have had such a massive impact at dissuading people from voting for it at little to no cost/risk. turns out Obama throws us under the bus just like other democrats. Obama's victory a revolution? far from it.

Well, the election has happened, and it appears that you're 100% wrong. Or should I say, about 67% wrong, give or take. That provided the margin of defeat. Of course, the 33% of black voters who voted against I appreciate as much as anyone else who voted against.

I fault pi88 poor marketing by the No on 8 campaign, who never ran an effective commercial targeted at the black community until the last week (literally!). I doubt there was much outreach either. At least some of the leaders, like Maxine Waters, were vocal in their opposition. I can't believe a 15% swing couldn't have been achieved with an effective campaign.

What the ~70% pro Prop 8 vote in the black community really highlights is the proportionately larger influence religion plays in that community. It's just one of the many self-erected barriers in the road to progress for black people. In the meantime they'll get no more favors from me. I voted for the constitutional ban on affirmative action that was on the ballot in Colorado this election.

John, I trust you're more intelligent than that! Not voting for affirmative action because the, over 65 religious, Black electorate [the disproportionately high voting population on this prop], voted their religious convictions, which for them, overrides any earthly injustices, even against themselves, is *insane*, ok, at least, shortsighted.

It's like after Hillary was knocked out of the race, many women said they'd not vote for Obama because the press were sexist! What does one have to do with the other? Obama was not in charge of the press. Affirmative action for *all* citizens is not rendered wrong because of a group of citizens voting, albeit wrongly in my opinion, their religious beliefs.

Another point to consider is that the Mormons spent *tens of millions* on TV advertising, targeting religious people. Do you know about the power of subliminal suggestions? Brain experts have studied the effects of TV on the brain and found that it literally puts watchers into a hypnotic state, so that what we watch is deeply influential in the thoughts, beliefs, actions of ppl who watch it. One could say that life imitates TV. Have you ever wondered why corporations put one ad on over & over again? It's literally brainwashing us! and they know it and use it to do just that.

Think about it! Don't be another knee jerk idiot that doesn't consider the clear [not even nuanced!] differences.

Go in peace, brother.

The gay community in California is upset about the black community's vote regarding Proposition 8 and have largely blamed that community's vote for its failure. What I find so disingenuous about the (predominantly) white gay community, is that the moment where they "need" the black community, there's this effusion of emotion and discussion of "unity", "healing", and other words you rarely hear.

I think this has identified the rarely spoken, but ugly secret within the gay community - it's probably more notoriously than in the greater white community at-large. I'm sorry, but as much as I disagree with Prop 8, I feel no urgency to support it with the same zeal as others in the white gay community state they need us. It's an honest statement to say that the road to the greater black community is to start talking to the smaller, but critical gay black community.

Did you know there are two gay prides in the community? Did you know that communities are very much aligned by ethnicity so when there's this "call for unity" when it comes to politics, the white majority gay community simply isn't going to garner the same response from other minority communities until a clear and inclusive dialogue can happen with gay communities of color and gay community at large. Until the greater white community can face it's racist tendencies, often classified as "inherent preferences" , you'll never achieve the foot soldiers needed from other communities of color, particularly the black gay community, to talk effectively to the greater black communities regarding issues like Prop 8.

I've continually read that white gay leaders are "shocked" by the black communities response to Prop 8. Well I'm not at all. As with any other political issue, although it might seem there's a natural proclivity for political alliance. However, those needed to evangelize the political message are still searching for fences to be mended.

First let's understand something about statistics. We say that 70% of blacks vote yes on prop 8. But what does that really mean? Seeing as how the black population is not as large as the white population, you can't harp as much on the percentagaes as the pure numbers. As of 2006, whites made up 77% of the population, and black just 7%. More white people voted for prop 8 than blacks. period.

On the flip side I will say that much of the homophobia from the black community stems from the belief that homosexuality is a sin. Black churches teach that if you are for homosexuality in any shape or form, you are against God. No one wants to be against God. This is the problem that we had in the past elections...it was the appeal to the black church on issues such as abortion and homosexuality. The fear agenda, I call it. So if you are for abortion or gay rights you are going to hell. This is the irrational fear that makes black christians vote for prop 8. As much as I hate to admit it, black congregations can assign a god-like following to their pastor. I know, I have been attending black churches all my life. Whatever the pastor says they believe, no questions asked. Some people don't even read the Bible they just take what ever it is their pastor says the Bible says. This effect is even greater in poor neighboorhods. Drive through a poor black neighboorhood and you will see a church on every corner if not more. Drive through a middle class neighboorhood, you will see less. You get the point here. The black church is THE institution in the black community. They are the ones feeding the poor, helping single moms and clothing those who are cold in the winter. When you have a such a powerful institution in communities we see the effects, both the good and the not so good play out just like it did on Nov 4th. What do you expect when preachers are saying that gays want to convert children, that gays are nasty and an abomination, that they will be forced to marry gay people, that their will be less eligible black men, etc...? They hear from "ex-gays" about how God brought them out of homosexuality and if He did it for them he can do it for anyone. This is what they are saying folks...I've heard it. And people believe it.

Blacks were not the cause of the passing of Prop. 8. But what we have witnessed is the great power the church has over the black community. And yes, there should have been an outreach initiatve to the AA communities to educate them on what prop 8 was really about. We have a problem with men being on the "DL" in the black community. We have fathers and mothers who know their son or daughter is gay. But we don't talk about it, as if not speaking about it will make it go away.

So if we want to "win over" the black vote, there is a lot of work that needs to be done and it will not be easy.

It is truly not a gay person who can say that they came away from that part of their live because they prayed to our God. Who can believe that? If you stopped being gay you probably never were, you just were experiencing something you were not sure of because you were probably not sure of yourself. I have been happily married for almost 40 years and I am a strong believer in God and Jesus Christ and I have no problem with believing that a gay man or woman has just as much right to love and be happy as I do. I am also disappointed in Calif.

John Robertson | November 9, 2008 12:51 PM

Gays come in all colors and so do bigots. Black bigots are getting blamed for being the biggest bigots when it came to Prop 8, but truly they were only the most ironic. Does that make black bigots worse than white bigots, or Hispanic bigots, or Asians? Black gays are suffering too at the hands of this decision and so who do they get to blame? I guess the way I see it, what is bad for the few is bad for the many. Our country has suffered greatly for what it did to the black population ever since the first Christian kidnapped the first African and shackled them to a plantation in the name of Christ. Oppression of minorities in America has caused war, riots, poverty, crime, death, economic instability, civil unrest; and the list goes on and on. As long as majorities seek to oppress minorities, America will continue to reinact this legacy again and again. The white bigots haven't said anything new, but the black bigots have proclaimed that their experience of oppression was unique, untouchable by any other, and therefore they are beyond accountability for anything unjust that they do. They also have been eager to remind us all that they suffered for hundreds of years. I would just like to remind black bigots that gay people have suffered for hundreds of years as well. At no time in our history have gays had more rights than blacks, and today blacks have about 3000 more rights than gays, largely in part to the way black bigots voted on November 4, 2008. And what about the Jews? Haven't they suffered for thousands of years, starting with the Black Egyptians enslaving the Israelites? Didn't Jews go to the concentration camps? Yet you don't see the Jews going around oppressing the gays and claiming immunity for it. The Jewish culture is the single most civil rights conscious culture in our nation, and it is because they have learned their lessons from their suffering.

With that said, I do not support a gay backlash which in anyway resembles racist behavior. Gays must strive to be beyond reproach if they seriously want to convince others they deserve equality. Therefore, gays must study the black model of the civil rights movement, and peacefully rebel against the black bigots, the white bigots, the asian ones and the Hispanics. Only if gays behave with dignity will they eventually be awarded it. Bigotry is bigotry whether it is gay on black or black on gay.

Much love.

John Robertson

Thelea Draganic | November 10, 2008 5:19 AM

I am upset about this erroneous finger pointing at African-Americans regarding Proposition 8. Why are you so quick to believe whatever you hear? If someone told me 70 percent of gay people voted against Obama my first thought would be, excuse me Jesus, that is crap! I don't believe it! This political year was fraught with right wing lies. Bear that in mind.

"Religious organizations that support Proposition 8 include the Roman Catholic Church], Knights of Columbus, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) a group of Evangelical Christians led by Jim Garlow and Miles McPherson, American Family Association, Focus on the Family[and the National Organization for Marriage Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church, California's largest, has also endorsed the measure. The Bishops of the California Catholic Conference released a statement supporting the proposition. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) has publicly supported the proposition and encouraged their membership to support it, by asking its members to donate money and volunteer time. The First Presidency of the church announced its support for Proposition 8 in a letter read in every congregation. Latter-day Saints have provided a significant source for financial donations in support of the proposition, both inside and outside the State of California. About 45% of out-of-state contributions to Protect Marriage.com has come from Utah, over three times more than any other state."

Still, even though gays were fighting to preserve a basic right, it was the anti-equality side in California that seemed to have the most fervor. A symbolic low point for the gay side came on Oct. 13, when the Sacramento Bee ran a remarkable story about Rick and Pam Patterson, a Mormon couple of modest means - he drives a 10-year-old Honda Civic, she raises their five boys - who had withdrawn $50,000 from their savings account and given it to the pro-8 campaign. "It was a decision we made very prayerfully," Pam Patterson, 48, told the Bee's Jennifer Garza. "Was it an easy decision? No. But it was a clear decision, one that had so much potential to benefit our children and their children.”

This is your real enemy. Don't trust exit polls. I think they are pitting one group against the other. African-Americans are less than 7% of the state population, do the math. Many more Whites voted and they put this over, not Blacks. What are the total numbers of each group that voted. Someone dug into the data and found that we're just now learning is that the exit poll was based on less than 2,300 people. If you take into account that blacks in California only make up about 6.2%, we get roughly 224 blacks who were polled. 224 blacks to blame an entire race! The original percentage of black voters who were expected to say yes to Prop 8 was only around 52-58%. Anytime you get a vote that much higher over the projected vote, something went wrong.

I know someone who watches C-Span and they said most Blacks did not even address the question at all. And they do not have the money to fund a tens of millions of dollars Proposition 8 campaign. Note that they also targeted affirmative action for eradication in another state.

I cannot believe that these groups get a pass and Blacks are being targeted for the blame game. Rather than be upset at the phantom African-American menace, fight like hell. There is no right wing black conspiracy against gay Americans. When you tried to align your struggle with that of Blacks you inherited their enemies. These same enemies are now trying to pit one against the other because they fear the combined numbers of both.

How many gay activists supported the civil rights movement in the 1960’s? Then how do you automatically expect support in return? Have you asked Blacks to support you or did you just assume?

No one gave Obama anything and they will not give gays anything either. Obama stands on the shoulders of a lot of brave people who gave their lives for him to stand on that podium last night.

Never trust exits polls because in all my years of life, no one has ever been seen at a polling place asking anyone anything when they left.

Don't fall for the lies.



It’s always gonna be futile - trying to bridge the gap. Does anyone really believe that white gays are going to reach out to black communities in any significant numbers (yes, they may one day soon reach out to the minority of “upper-class” bourgeois African-Americans) or that black ‘hardened-by-the-struggle’ victims of white supremacy intend to accept white gay/lesbian in a way which says “help us to understand you” or “convince me that we should work together” ??? Being totally disenfranchised and constantly commodified, Do these projected African Americans have a political will? Will they reasonbly sit and listen to white voices that try to gain favor by preaching about discrimination, when any other time, 365 days a year, these WHITE GAYS ARE WHITE AND ARE PRIVILEGED IN A WHITE SYSTEM AND HAVE NEVER APPEARED AT THE DOORSTEP OF THE HOOD FOR THEIR FANCIED PLIGHT OF UNIFICATION???
It’s a sorry thing, that at a time not too long ago when my people could not sit with whites at the counter, 99% of gay whites (and other gays) people were still in the closet and therefore “couldn’t” fight the equality fight with black folks

so what happened, they simply remained for decades “IN THE CLOSET” (or in other words SAFELY HIDDEN IN THEIR WHITENESS, OUT OF HARMS WAY)

sigh

These may be of interest:
http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2008/11/new-obama-voter.html#more
http://www.sacbee.com/walters/story/1387029.html
Cheers.

Oh, BTW, what about Asians? Both in terms of asian gays being largely ignored by the gay community; as well as the relative conservatism of much of that community still. (I also wonder a bit about that ad for prop 8 featuring the young chinese sister and brother...)

Thanks for this article. I had heard the Catch-22 theory on NPR and thought the idea was sound, but didn't give it much more consideration that that. Thanks, too, for the eye-opening comments.

" And a funny thing happened on the way to the ballot box in the last presidential election. When constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage were on 11 state ballots in November 2004, blacks in Arkansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Ohio and Oklahoma were at least one percentage point less likely than whites to vote for them, according to CNN exit polls. Only in Georgia were blacks slightly more likely to vote for the amendment. (The remaining four states had too few blacks to make a meaningful comparison.) "

Which is why the 70/30 statistic feels like such an outlier.

Remember that if Blacks voted 50/50 like Whites and Latinos, the entire argument that 'Blacks defeated Prop 8' falls through. After all, they are only 11% of the total californian population.