Op/Ed: Cuccinelli’s True Colors Seen Once Again In DOMA Stir
When King & Spalding dropped their client, the House of Representatives, heads turned. Their statement is bold and New York Times raises it as the “tipping point” in the Gay Marriage debate. The Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. When civil rights of an individual or group, in this case a couple are denied, there is no excuse be it religious or traditional that warrants a federal law.
New York Times also reports that conservatives argue a growing gap between the elites and the majority of Americans’ views on the issue. It is believed by some that when an elite group like King and Spalding make a statement like this, they do so from a position of elitist power.
When Matthew J. Franck of the Witherspoon Institute commented that the worst of “unchallenged liberal presumptions” come from some of the country’s “ most prestigious universities” on his blog on Friday, he proves the opposite of what he intends. It is in some of these thinking institutions that people truly grapple with the civil issues of equality critically. What if the majority of Americans are wrong? They were wrong when they held that interracial marriage should not pass by law. Weren’t they? Just because polls say most people view marriage as traditional doesn’t mean they have all of the information that they need.
Ken Cuccinelli showed his true colors again this week, saying “King & Spalding’s willingness to drop a client, the U.S. House of Representatives, in connection with the lawsuit challenging the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was such an obsequious act of weakness that I feel compelled to end your legal association with Virginia so that there is no chance that one of my legal clients will be put in the embarrassing and difficult situation like the client you walked away from, the House of Representatives,” Cuccinelli wrote to firm partner Joseph Lynch in a letter obtained by the Washington Examiner.
Mr. Cuccinelli, you should be praising them for their consistency and integrity. King & Spalding earned a rating of 95 percent in the Corporate Equality Index 2010 for their work in defending GLBT rights. “At our firm, diversity is an integral part of the culture,” said Lovita T Tandy, partner and chair of the diversity committee of King & Spalding. “We are committed to having the brightest and most diverse lawyers we can find, including members of the LGBT community. We work hard to foster and maintain an environment where our lawyers can provide the highest level of legal service while being true to themselves in the process.”
I recently came out to three of the English classes that I teach. I do so bravely, unprotected by laws in this state. There are some in my classes who are gay, and are looking for someone who can prove to them that things are going to be okay. But for the general population, few of my students knew about the adverse position their political leaders have to GLBT rights. Few understood that without civil rights gay couples who have established themselves for many years cannot own property together as a couple, make critical medical choices for their partners, or even have access to them in an emergency, they didn’t think about Federal tax breaks afforded to heterosexual couples, or retirement plans, or healthcare. The list goes on. The point here, is that NO ONE TELLS THEM THE TRUTH. And this applies to the “majority” who prefer to stick with “traditional marriage.”
In Virginia, political conservatives seem to have a real vendetta against the gay community. We are yet to see basic laws of protection in this state, such as those that ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in the work place.
Shouldn’t a governor who is paid by our taxes, including the taxes of the gay community he is supposed to be serving, be working to protect our rights? What is wrong with this state? And what is wrong with the voters? Why don’t people seem to care about civil rights when they cast their ballot?
The most important thing that the gay community can do in a bewildering political climate, where a conservative House of Representatives are determined to restore America to it’s ‘prehistoric’, Puritanical religious traditions, rather than making important changes to advance the rights of GLBT people.
Gay conservative voters, I urge you to reconsider your support for candidates who do not support you. Challenge your delegates and representatives, write letters, make calls, and get active! If you are looking for more fiscally conservative policies at the cost of civil rights, don’t just go to the poles, confront your leaders, and talk about this with your heterosexual friends. Push harder to get America back on track financially and socially because I believe that we can have both. But neither sides of the aisle truly represent what the people need. So, make them. The likes of Cuccinelli should not stand another term with his stance so clearly against us.
Phil Roberts is an educator living in Richmond, VA with his partner. His passions are for musical theater, literature, civil rights, health and fitness.
So a producer’s job is to find hosts for talk shows. They do other things, but it’s a large part of their job. And it looks like one producer opened up their rolodex of failure and pulled out an old, reliable nut-job – Ken Cuccinelli: “Show me a religion that says “no blacks allowed,” says the [...]February 26, 2014
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