Fierce Urgency of Now
I support the complete repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Federal law should not discriminate in any way against Gay and Lesbian couples, which is precisely what DOMA does. I have also called for us to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and have worked to improve the Uniting American Families Act so we can afford same-sex couples the same rights and obligations as married couples in our immigration system…… If we want to repeal DOMA, repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and implement fully inclusive laws outlawing hate crimes and discrimination in the workplace, we need to bring the message of LGBT equality to skeptical audiences as well as friendly ones.
Candidate Barack Obama was our guy, falling to the left of Clinton on LGBT equality and without question favorable to McCain on LGBT issues. He wanted our votes and our support and he got it. Polls showed that over 70% of the LGBT community voted for Obama. Candidate Obama was even kind enough to mention us in his acceptance speech, truly an historic moment for all Americans.
In Smelt v U.S.,the plaintiffs are a same-sex married couple seeking federal recognition of their California marriage, as well as the recognition of their marriage in other states. The case directly questions the constitutionality of DOMA which is precisely what the Obama administration defended in that brief. The blogoshpere lit up in an uproar after the brief was released on June 11th and the Obama administration tried to clarify their position that they believe DOMA is discriminatory. Now it seems clear that the brief was written by a Mormon attorney leftover from the Bush administration and was either not reviewed or not taken seriously by the higher ups in the department who signed off on the brief. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding the release of the brief, the language and tone of bigotry against the LGBT community was biting and a slap in the face from the very administration that fought so hard for our votes by making promises of “fierce advocacy.”
Since ACT UPwe have done nothing on a mass scale to exploit the potential of passive resistance and nonviolent civil disobedience, the most effective, proven techniques of social action refined in the last century. Aside from a few rogue players who’ve applied for marriage licenses and small bands of activists like Soulforce (who’ve been arrested for trespassing on Christian college campuses where they try to instigate conversations about homosexuality), we have not even tried. When gay soldiers get kicked out of the military, why don’t they refuse to leave? Why don’t the rest of us go to support them? Why haven’t we tried?
“Once more people realize same sex attractions do not mean you have to be any kind of label, just yourself…”September 19, 2016
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