Dr. Jillian T. Weiss

What To Do When The President Is Just Not That Into You

Filed By Dr. Jillian T. Weiss | June 19, 2011 11:30 AM | comments

Filed in: The Movement
Tags: #NN11, Dan Choi, Felipe Matos, Jane Hamsher, Joan McCarter, John Aravosis

This was the title of a Netroots panel discussing, well, what to do when he's just not that into you.

"The signing of a "Don't Ask Don't Tell" repeal act late last year demonstrated change was possible, but it did not come without a fight. The struggles between activists, donors, lobbyists, journalists and the administration in 2009-10 provides insights for other progressive movements pushing this administration to lead on our issues."

netrootsnation.jpgThe panelists were Joan McCarter (Senior Policy Analysis for Daily Kos), Dan Choi, Jane Hamsher (of Firedoglake), John Aravosis, and Felipe Matos (DREAM Act activist).

The panelists recalled last year's Netroots, where Dan Choi confronted Senator Harry Reid about Don't Ask Don't Tell, and how that affected the playing out of Don't Ask Don't Tell repeal, as well as chaining themselves to the White House fence, and the DREAM Act activists walking across the country. Of course, Don't Ask Don't Tell repeal was passed, after it looked extremely doubtful for quite a long time, and the DREAM Act lost by 5 votes in the Senate, after having been given no chance of getting more than a handful of votes.

It was a fascinating discussion by all, but Dan Choi got the largest round of applause, after noting that we need to go after the American Dream over and over and over again, and that politicians want and need to be pushed to stand up for that dream.

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This is so frustrating. Obama did exactly what he said he was going to to do on DADT at exactly the pace he said he was going to do. He kept his promises exactly!

I just don't think this "Obama sucks because he hasn't done enough" narrative is helpful. It's also completely false. As a community, we shouldn't look at the most LGBT friendly administration in history and say, "You haven't given me everything, so I won't support you." The message that sends is that we are petulant and that we don't have our friends' backs when push comes to shove.

It's absolutely true that we're not there yet - but that doesn't mean Obama hates us or doesn't take us seriously or "just isn't that into us" - he has a damned country to run, people!