Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

What's worse than saying you think homosexuality is a choice?

This:

Barack Obama is drawing fire for including Donnie McClurkin, a Grammy-winning gospel singer who has crusaded against homosexuality, on a concert and political tour that the Democratic presidential candidate will launch in South Carolina later this week.

Wikipedia elaborates on what makes McClurkin so offensive:

He states that homosexuality is a spiritual issue, from which one can be delivered from by the power and grace of God. In his book, Eternal Victim, Eternal Victor (ISBN 1-56229-162-9), he writes: "The abnormal use of my sexuality continued until I came to realize that I was broken and that homosexuality was not God's intention... for my masculinity."[6] He then describes himself as going through a process by which he became "a saved and sanctified man".

A firestorm has been growing steadily over the past few days. At HuffPo this weekend, political analyst and author Earl Ofari Hutchinson called on Obama to "cancel and repudiate" the gospel tour and Truth Wins Out has called on Senator Obama to "distance himself" from McClurkin. To try and mitigate some of the fall-out, Obama has released this statement, which denounces McClurkin but stops short of removing him from the tour:

"I have clearly stated my belief that gays and lesbians are our brothers and sisters and should be provided the respect, dignity, and rights of all other citizens. I have consistently spoken directly to African-American religious leaders about the need to overcome the homophobia that persists in some parts our community so that we can confront issues like HIV/AIDS and broaden the reach of equal rights in this country.

I strongly believe that African Americans and the LGBT community must stand together in the fight for equal rights. And so I strongly disagree with Reverend McClurkin's views and will continue to fight for these rights as President of the United States to ensure that America is a country that spreads tolerance instead of division."

Chicago Tribune's The Swamp does a good job of explaining the tightrope Obama is walking and why it's politically perilous both to keep McClurkin on the tour and to let him go:

One gay activist involved with the Obama campaign said the situation puts the candidate in a bind, since he risks offending evangelicals in South Carolina if he cancels McClurkin's appearance but could alienate gay supporters if the performance proceeds as planned.

"This story is quickly turning into a disaster for Barack," said the supporter who is active on gay and lesbian issues. "He's screwed if he goes through with the trip with Donnie McClurkin....But he's also screwed in South Carolina if he dumps McClurkin. I hope that the staffer who set this up has already been fired."

Even so, the question remains whether this statement will be enough to pacify those in the gay community for whom this could be a dealbreaker. John Aravosis for one is not even close to being satisfied by the statement.

Obama's outreach to the black evangelical community is admirable and could reap benefits for the Democratic Party in the long-run but this conflict in values that has emerged between Obama's own base and those of this prominent figure whose base Obama is courting can't have come as a shock to the campaign. The paradox of running a campaign based on inclusion is that you're more than likely going to alienate somebody at some point based on who you're including, unless of course you're experienced and skilled enough to avoid those landmines. And I have to say, whether or not you feel the inclusion of McClurkin in this fundraiser for Obama is a deal breaker, Obama's inability to avoid this foreseeable bump in the road at the very least contributes to the growing crisis in confidence people seem to be feeling about Obama lately (see the results of the latest DailyKos straw poll for the most recent evidence of this.)

Tags: 2008 Presidential election, Barack Obama, donnie mcclurkin, homosexuality (all tags)

Comments

117 Comments

Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Lose the gay vote?......I think not. Those criticizing Obama are Hillary and Edwards supporters that hate the black church and Gospel music.  They have sunk to new lows by criticizing the church.  

by allmiview 2007-10-22 06:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

What Edwards supporters here have criticized him for this?

by bruh21 2007-10-22 06:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Why dont the Hillary supporters criticize Bill Richardson for saying he will continue to appear on that "RAcist" Don Imus' radio show?.............This is once again fake outrage by a bunch Hillary supporters.

by allmiview 2007-10-22 06:19PM | 0 recs
Re:

Richardson has been criticized by all here, specifically when he stated that being gay is a "choice," but also other choice quotes where Richardson seems to want to rival Biden for bone-headed quotes.  

This issue was handled poorly by the Obama campaign.  The HuffPost is CLEARLY pro-Obama and anti-Clinton (as you well know.)  It was just a mistake by Obama.  It happened.  IMO he should get rid of this guy and substitute with another, non-confrontational gospel star.  

by georgep 2007-10-22 06:24PM | 0 recs
Re:

You should also criticize BILL CLINTON because this man has performed for him also.

by allmiview 2007-10-22 06:25PM | 0 recs
Re:

From what I have seen the man had an epiphany in 2001 and turned to his anti-gay ministry at that point.  Before that he was just another gospel singer like all the others.  So, your remark about Bill Clinton does not hold water.   The gay-ministry stuff (trying to make gays see the light and turn away from this unnatural lifestyle) started well after he sang for Bill Clinton.  

by georgep 2007-10-22 06:48PM | 0 recs
Re:

The point that you and other critics are missing is that McClurkin's views are NOT out of the mainstream in Black churches, particularly the South.  It's irrelevant whether or not Bill Clinton shared the stage with Donnie McClurkin after 1992.  The fact is that he and most Democrats who have visited Black churches have shared the stage with those who share McClurkin's views.  In fact, the church that held Corretta Scott King's funeral openly opposes homosexuality.  Obama is no different than every member of the Congressional Black Caucus and Democrats generally seeking statewide office and the presidency.  If you want Black votes, which you can't win without, you are going through the Black church.

by Dee 2007-10-23 07:44AM | 0 recs
attended show != hired to perform

1) McClurkin got outspoken in 2002, right?  If I recall correctly, that's after Mr. Clinton's term ended.

& more importantly

2) Being in the audience is one thing; hiring someone to perform at an official campaign event is another.  Generally extra caution is advised for the latter, and I am truly shocked that Obama was not more careful.  

Disclaimer:  not affiliated with any of the candidates, and would probably have called Obama my 2nd choice or 1st for VP before this mistake.

by chiefscribe 2007-10-22 06:52PM | 0 recs
Re:

No you shouldn't include "BILL CLINTON" in this.  Donnie McClurkin did not decare "WAR" on the "CURSE OF HOMOSEXUALITY" until 2001. While Dippy Donny performed at the 1992 DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION,  he now is not welcomed by Democrats, since he started his crusade.  In 2004 he performed at the REPUBLICAN NATIONAL CONVENTION and he is scheduled to sing for REPUBLICANS in 2008 as well.

Unless OBAMA refuses to go on tour with him,  both me and my life-partner will be voting for Rudy Guilliani, should OBAMA win the Democratic Nomination.

At least Rudy Guilliani has shown his support to our community by offering NYC workers domestic partner benefits and by MARCHING in a GAY PARADE.

This is a deal breaker for me as a DEMOCRAT.  I have always preferred HILLARY but I didn't DISLIKE OBAMA, just like I dont DISLIKE any other Democrat.

Obama's pandering to a KNOWN HATE MONGER is truly quite disgusting, and quite surprising.

I would be equally DISGUSTED if I saw Hillary going on tour with DAVID DUKE.  

Most Gays that I know are voting for either HILLARY or KUCINICH.  

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 06:54PM | 0 recs
Re:

I'm really surprised you'd vote for a guy who has pledged to push a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, over a guy who included an anti-gay singer in a campaign event.  I mean, I understand the anger, but I really don't understand the decision that flows from it.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 06:59PM | 0 recs
Re:

STEVE,

I actually didn't know that about GUILLIANI.  IF Obama wins the nomination maybe we will just stay home and not vote at all then.

I will have to do research.  I gave you a high rating because your post about GULLIANI was informative.  

SIGH, this is very disturbing.

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 07:08PM | 0 recs
Re:

I heard he made that promise at the big "value voters" thing this past weekend.  Sorry I don't have a link for you.

I think it's pretty obvious from Giuliani's tenure as mayor that he doesn't have any kind of problem with gay people.  But I don't think Dick Cheney has a personal problem with gay people, and I doubt George Bush does, either.  I doubt they sit around and chat amongst themselves about how gay people are disordered or anything like that.

The problem with the Republican Party over the years has not been that they're all a bunch of bigoted racist homophobic assholes, but that politically, they're consistently willing to pander to the worst sort of bigots in order to get elected.  It's really sick.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 07:18PM | 0 recs
Re:

Not trying to defend Giuliani, but in the debate the other day he said he does not support a constitutional amendment at this time (though he held open the possibility of supporting one in the future).

by markjay 2007-10-22 07:20PM | 0 recs
Re:

Well, you made me do my research, because I don't want to be responsible for misleading anyone.  Here is what I was thinking of.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 07:27PM | 0 recs
Re:

i believe what he said was that if a bunch of states suddenly legalize gay marriage then he would suddenly support a ban. put he doesnt think its necessary now. but cmon, neither guiliani or obama are heterosexist.

by leewesley 2007-10-22 07:31PM | 0 recs
Re:

i take that back, guiliani is, but not by republican standards

by leewesley 2007-10-22 07:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

We here in the GAY COMMUNTITY not only criticized BILL RICHARDSON,  we wrote letters to the editor,  we BOO'ed while watching his live debate answer.  I was shocked at him.  

Richardson, however,  did backpeddle during the debate and say "LOOK I am not a scientist". I honestly believe his answer was due to lack of understanding of the subject.

BUT....unlike DONNIE MCCLURKIN,  Richardson has not waged a "WAR AGAINST THE CURSE OF HOMOSEXUALITY" and preached the bogus science of changing one's orientation, which causes young people to think they can change, and causes them irreperable damage.

Obama's decision to perform with DONNIE is an insult.  It would be like HIllary going on tour with DAVID DUKE....It is 100 percent a deal breaker and I hope he cancels his tour.

The fact that OBAMA is THE FIRST candidate to EXPLOIT OUR COMMUNITY this election for votes makes me ashamed to even be a DEMOCRAT.

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 07:03PM | 0 recs
Richardson has been strong on LGBT rights

On Richardson, he promptly reversed himself in a statement he issued after the debate.  He also emphasized during the debate that regardless of one's sexual identity each person deserves respect and not one should be discriminated on the basis of sexual orientation.  And with Richardson, that's not just a campaign promise. He has had an outstanding record on LGBT issues as Governor of New Mexico.  

From his site:

A Record of Accomplishment From Day One

In his very first legislative session after taking office in 2003 Governor Richardson fought for, passed and signed:

   * The first hate crimes law in New Mexico history.
    * Legislation extending civil rights protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

He issued an executive order to extend access to health insurance and benefits to the domestic partners of state employees.

Pushed for Domestic Partnerships in New Mexico

Earlier this year Governor Richardson called the New Mexico Legislature back into a special session to address this important issue. Unfortunately, it lost by one vote in the regular session. But Governor Richardson will bring this bill back in the 2008 session, and this time will get it passed. Additionally, with a coalition of advocates, he successfully warded off a DOMA in New Mexico - one of only a handful of states that does not have one.

A Track Record of Inclusion and Diversity

He has also appointed gay and lesbian individuals to important posts throughout his administration -- to Cabinet posts, Division Directors, and to powerful boards and commissions. He will do the same as President, leading an Administration that truly looks like America. In Fact, he has pledged that his Vice-President will be an integral member of the HIV/AIDS Commission.

An End to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"

And as President, he will continue to get things done. He will also end the military's disastrous, disrespectful "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy. He voted against this as a Congressman and continues to oppose it today. It makes no sense to turn away and turn out well-qualified recruits, at a time when our country needs them most. There are currently an estimated 65,000 gay and lesbian soldiers serving in our military. They are no less patriotic and their lives and sacrifices are no less valuable because of their sexual orientation. Homosexuality is not immoral, asking someone to hide their identity and devaluing their sacrifice is.

A Commitment to Achieving Equal Rights Under the Law

Gay and lesbian families deserve respect, and as President, Bill Richardson will take a principled stand to fight for it. He strongly believes that we don't need constitutional amendments designed to exclude supportive, devoted couples. We need to extend the rights due to all of us as Americans:

   * The right to visit a sick or dying partner in the hospital,
    * The right to make necessary legal and financial decisions when a partner can no longer do so,
    * The right to equal employment opportunity, and
    * The right to protection from violent prejudice.

A Pledge to Accomplish Full Equality for ALL Americans

As President, he will continue to fight for full and equal rights for all domestic partners, including gay and lesbian families.

Bill Richardson did all this in a "red state." With the right leadership, you can get these things done. He believes that by working together, we can accomplish the same on the national level. But before you cast your lot with any national candidate, you have to ask -- not just do they talk the talk -- but do they walk the walk? Can they get it done? As a Governor -- Bill Richardson gets things done.

http://www.richardsonforpresident.com/is sues/lgbt

by Stephen Cassidy 2007-10-22 08:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Richardson has been strong on LGBT rights

That is excellent news.  I am glad RICHARDSON has that record.  

I am certain that RICHARDSON would never tour with a KNOWN GAY BASHER like Donnie McClurkin either.

His DEBATE answer did spark some ANGER.  But you are right, in the end, it was just a slight "FAUX PAS" that is easily forgiven.  

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 09:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Edwards understands Christian culture in the South.  I would be SHOCKED if had any opinion on this matter.

by Dee 2007-10-23 07:37AM | 0 recs
Defending

anti-gay bigotry.

There are some places where you must draw the line. Obama lacked the moral judgment to do the right thing here.

This singer is a bigot.  He has got to go.

by TomP 2007-10-22 08:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

The MSM is starting to pick up this story.
AP just filed the following report...


WASHINGTON (AP) - A gay rights group on Monday urged Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama to cut ties with a gospel singer who they say spreads false information about gays and lesbians.
Donnie McClurkin is among several gospel singers scheduled to raise money for the Illinois senator at a concert in South Carolina this weekend.

McClurkin has drawn attention from gay rights activists for his views on homosexuality.

"I don't believe that it is the intention of God," McClurkin said Monday in a telephone interview.

McClurkin said he does not believe in discriminating against homosexuals. "What people do in their bedrooms and who they are as human beings are two different things," he said.

Obama's campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

"We strongly urge Obama to part ways with this divisive preacher who is clearly singing a different tune than the stated message of the campaign," Wayne Besen, executive director of Truth Wins Out, said in a statement.

At a forum on gay issues in August, Obama argued that civil unions for same-sex couples wouldn't be a "lesser thing" than marriage. Obama belongs to the United Church of Christ, which supports gay marriage, but Obama has yet to go that far.

In a telephone interview Monday, Besen said he admired Obama, but wasn't ready to endorse him, especially considering McClurkin taking part in the campaign's "Embrace the Change" concert tour.

"I think he'd be a great president. But I think it's going to drive away support from people who are on the fence such as myself," Besen said.

McClurkin, a Grammy Award winner, performed at the Republican National Convention in 2004.

by areyouready 2007-10-22 06:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

One poster here reminded me that apparently Bill Clinton also met with this person- is this true?

by bruh21 2007-10-22 06:16PM | 0 recs
Yeah - Clinton's a witch too

Anyone who meets with a witch is a witch.  If you meet with a witch-meeter, you are a witch as well.  

Witchness! It's everywhere!! You can't be TOO CAREFUL.  

Shoot first, ask questions later.  BURN THE WITCHES!

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

He turned strongly and publicly anti-gay in 2001, years after he sang at a Clinton event.

by markjay 2007-10-22 07:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

This is yet another non-issue.  The plain FACT is that there are many opinions on the status of gay people.  We should NOT cut off this guy because he has the "wrong" idea.  

The black church is NOT gay-friendly.  There is a very natural tension between gays and blacks, especially religious conservative blacks.

And quite frankly, if it comes down to voting, I'm voting for the conservative blacks.  There are 2-3 % gays, and 6-7 % blacks.  The blacks win.  Sorry.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Ignoring for a minute the topic of Obama let me address your post because like when you called the Chinese 'wetbacks" you seem to have an issue separating out your prejudices from the discussion at hand.

by bruh21 2007-10-22 06:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Off topic.  

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Not really because he's right.  You've said vile things about Indians and Chinese in the past, and here you are stereotyping "blacks" as anti-gay.

by Vox Populi 2007-10-22 06:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

DO you mean the Indian and Chinese scabs here on H-1Bs?  Why, yes, I have said nasty things about those people.

Yes, sirree, bob, that would be me.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:30PM | 0 recs
Troll-rated for ignorant statements

You, sir, are an ignoramus, and get a big TR for that comment.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:33PM | 0 recs
You mean my

statements complaining about Indian and Chinese H-1B scabs?  Yes I made those statements, and will make them again.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 07:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

I'm gonna continue to use that word.  It isn't racist.  In fact, YOU are the racist with that word.  

Why is that?  The word describes an ACTION.  YOU and the other racists believe that it identifies a certain person or group of person.

You are a vicious, unrepentent racist.  You should apologize to the rest of us.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Can you explain the non-racist definition of "wetbacks"  and why you needed what is mostly seen as a pejorative term to make your point.  Thanks

by Kingstongirl 2007-10-22 06:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

No, it doesn't describe an action.  Although if it makes you feel better, I believe O'Reilly tried to make a similar argument.  I would suggest expanding your vocabulary so you don't have to use racial or ethnic slurs at all.  

by HSTruman 2007-10-23 05:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

MANY OPINIONS ON THE STATUS OF GAY PEOPLE?????????

YEAH and ONLY one is acceptable..

Gays are EQUAL and NOT SECOND CLASS CITIZENS.

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 07:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

I'm not sure what the point of your post is.  Is the point that this is a non-issue?  or that "the" "black church" is not gay-friendly?  (I didn't know there was just one).  or that whatever tension there is between this one black church and the gay community is "natural"?  or that you will vote for conservative blacks at the expense of gay people?  or that because the black community is larger than the gays, then they "win"?  Pick a prejudiced thought and stick with it.

by CoolHandLuc 2007-10-23 09:57AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

TWO has gotten in on this issue on its frontpage:

http://www.truthwinsout.org/

This issue has gotten quite big, and I agree with Todd that if you go after the "moral conservative" evangelical AA vote in South Carolina, you run the risk of running counter to the "moral progressive" vote elsewhere, as has happened here.   I don't get why this guy was invited in the first place.  None of the other gospel artists seem to be a problem.  Why was this one so important as to create this issue?  All they needed to do was get another artist like the dozen others (non-confrontational) and there would have been no issue at all.  You get to go after the evangelical AA vote without bumping into problems with other constituencies.  

by georgep 2007-10-22 06:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

This is Obama's macca moment.  The gay vote may not be that large but it only needs to be large enough at the margin -- to deny him first place in the primaries.

by Bob in BC 2007-10-22 06:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

this same gospel singer has performed for Bill Clinton before...so before all you Hillary supporters, with your fake outrage, start criticizing Obama, you should know all the facts.

by allmiview 2007-10-22 06:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

I'm just trying to track this down, not implying anything but curiosity, but do you happen to have a link about the McClurkin/Clinton performance?

by BingoL 2007-10-22 06:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

here is the link  http://www.democraticunderground.com/dis cuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address =132x3628810

He not only performed for "the Clintons", he also performed at the Democratic National convention.  

by allmiview 2007-10-22 07:26PM | 0 recs
That doesn't matter

To the witch patrol here, he's a witch.  Why you ask?  Because ...sniff.snifff.  sniff... he smells witchy.  

Besides that, he's a little dark.  So, he's a witch.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 08:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Did you not read the remarks which explained to you that he did not start his anti-gay comments and anti-gay ministry until 2001, well after Bill Clinton was out of office?

by georgep 2007-10-22 09:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

McClurkin started his anti-gay crusade in 2001.  Your comment has no relevance to this discussion, as that appearance was in 1996, if I am not mistaken.   At that point there were no anti-gay elements visible, he was just another singer.  

by georgep 2007-10-22 06:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

I didn't realize Obama had the gay vote in his pocket anyway.  Did I miss that somewhere?  It wasn't really his to "lose."

by Vox Populi 2007-10-22 06:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

I think he just did.  This is national now, I saw it on yahoo news.  And he could lose more than just the "gay" vote- it's always talked about he has a lot of the "youth" vote- well, the youth are the very ones most likely to be offended by this- and Hollywood players are not going to be too keen over it, either.  You listening, David Geffen?

If Obama doesn't drop the guy, there will be fall-out.

by reasonwarrior 2007-10-22 06:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

"Obama's outreach to the black evangelical community is admirable and could reap benefits for the Democratic Party in the long-run"

The Black community, evangelical or other, is already in the Democratic party.  For this primary season, it's a matter of who they support, Obama or Hillary; so there is no long run. I think this is a case where Obama wanted to connect with the Black voters of SC by bringing a popular musician to help court the vote.  Now however, it has turned into a mess, because he may alienate the gay/lesbian community.  IMO, this is a short term disaster, if McClurkin sticks to singing and doesn't hop up on his soap box about praying away his gayness.

by Kingstongirl 2007-10-22 06:23PM | 0 recs
You're wrong about that

There is a segment, and it can be large, of the black community that is susceptible to the conservative message.  This is the socially conservative black vote.  MANY black preachers are MORALLY OFFENDED by homosexuality.  MANY are EVEN MORE INCENSED by the notion, which they VIOLENTLY disagree with, that homosexuality is inherent.  

This is also the case with hispanics.  Many many hispanics are morally conservatives repelled by homosexuality.  During the 2004 election, I heard over and over that the gay marriage agenda of the dems was driving them away.  

We democrats do NOT have a lock on the black vote.  For the moment, we do.  But we can lose it.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:28PM | 0 recs
Re: You're wrong about that

So you think the Democratic party is going to lose the Black vote to the Republicans because we are inclusive as a party and think that discrimination based on race, sex, or gender is wrong.  I don't think so.   Black preachers preaching about the wrongness of homosexuality is not going to sway the Black to the Republican side of the house.  

by Kingstongirl 2007-10-22 06:38PM | 0 recs
I didn't say that

What I did say is that there is a segment of the black community morally offended by homosexuality.  I think that it's about 25 %.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:43PM | 0 recs
Re: You're wrong about that

Ohio 2004.

by Dee 2007-10-23 11:06AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

McClurkin has already been on the soapbox; that's the problem.

Imagine if some Democratic candidate hired David Duke, Louis Farrakhan, or OJ Simpson to sing the national anthem at their event.  Even if [divisive figure] said not one word and behaved impeccably, that candidate has now associated her/his campaign with that person.  

by chiefscribe 2007-10-22 06:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Louis Farrakhan provided security protection for Jesse Jackson and he often shares the stage with many Black leaders and politicians.

by Dee 2007-10-23 11:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

This is why Democratic Party politics are awesome and always will be.

This raises the age-old question of whether tolerant people are supposed to be tolerant of the intolerant.  If Obama can navigate his way out of this no-win situation, he's a better man than I.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 06:30PM | 0 recs
This isn't about tolerance.

  It's political pandering.  Let people make their decision about the pander as they will but his intention here was to pander, which is fine with me.  Whether an acceptable pander or not is for others to decide.  But, let's not make this into more than it is.

by bookgrl 2007-10-22 06:35PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

I don't get what you mean.  Pandering to whom?  Sounds like a regular old screw-up by his campaign.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 06:41PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

To the religious conservatives. I frankly don't find the screw up concept credible.  But, hey, maybe you're right.  

by bookgrl 2007-10-22 06:51PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

Are you hearing dog whistles again? :)

by Steve M 2007-10-22 06:56PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

Steve, I'm a realist.  Like I said, I will leave it for others to decide if it is an acceptable pander, but I think probably is a pander.  

by bookgrl 2007-10-22 07:05PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

Well, you probably know from my other posts that I'm a benefit of the doubt kind of guy.  That's not far from being naive, of course, and you could certainly be right about this.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 07:19PM | 0 recs
You're both right!

He was pandering AND screwed it up.  He could have scored points with gospel fans in SC and nobody outside of that demographic would have known or cared, but for lack of proper vetting or proper training of staff, he ended up hiring someone who has made hateful remarks about a core constituency.  Ooops!  Now he can finesse no longer.  He won't get away w/o taking a stand, & since the devil is in the details he will certainly lose some support from somewhere.  

by chiefscribe 2007-10-22 06:57PM | 0 recs
Re: You're both right!

If all you mean by "pandering" is that he was trying to put on a concert tour that people would like, that's a pretty weak form of pandering in my book.

I understood bookgrl to be suggesting that he knew this singer was anti-gay and he was subtly trying to pick up evangelical votes.  I have no way of knowing, of course, but I'm sticking with the "inadequate vetting" theory myself.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 07:02PM | 0 recs
Re: You're both right!

Well, that's possible.  

by bookgrl 2007-10-22 07:06PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

I think this issue was "made worse" by famed Obama supporter "Iamready" yesterday.  She claimed that Obama installed McClurkin specifically to go after the "morally conservative AA vote in SC."  In other words, if I understood her comments correctly, she specifically claimed that an anti-gay voice was included to curry favor with that segment of the AA population in SC that has some (hidden and not-so-hidden) problem with that lifestyle.   I can't say if that is really what was behind this, or if the campaign just screwed up innocently, but if one of Obama's prominent blog supporters makes a claim like that (and shouts if off the rooftops on several blogs, including dailykos and mydd,) then it means something, at least for the purposes of discussion on these blogs where these claim are made.  Remember that Iamready claims to have intimate insider info from and about the Obama campaign (not sure to believe that, just know that that claim has been made repeatedly.)  

by georgep 2007-10-22 07:01PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

If true, you'd really have to wonder what they were thinking.

by Steve M 2007-10-22 07:04PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

Yes, absolutely.  But, I actually tend to go with your explanation that it is probably more or less an crazy screwup by some idiot on the campaign.  I just found it interesting and amazing that this was defended by Obama supporters as a good thing, a necessary thing (to win votes in SC) and that it is much ado about nothing.   There is obvious damage here (if you look around the blogs, this is indeed somewhat of a firestorm) and pretending there is nothing to it when it is clear that this is a big issue in the progressive and gay community as a whole is just ignoring reality.  

Still, how Obama handles this issue will say a lot.  I think he HAS to uninvite the guy promptly.  The damage has already been done, but he can minimize it by doing the right thing by the larger community.  It is really the only thing he can do.  

by georgep 2007-10-22 07:16PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

an crazy screw up = a crazy screw up

by georgep 2007-10-22 07:16PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

It reminds me of hwc arguing that Hillary's vote on the Iraq war was a good and necessary thing in order to demonstrate her toughness and all-around commanderinchiefiness.  I mean, whatever, but it's amazing someone could think these arguments do anything but horrify people.  Like, even if you secretly thought Obama was a brilliant politician for slipping an anti-gay performer into his concert tour, I think you'd be smart enough not to say it out loud!

by Steve M 2007-10-22 07:23PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

George,

I respectfully disagree with 2 parts of your post. First,  There is NO DOUBT in my mind that OBAMA specifically selected a WELL KNOWN enemy of the GAY COMMUNITY in an effort to win votes.  There is no possible way that he "would not have known."  When going on a GOSPEL tour,  that would be the FIRST thing one would check on, I would think.  

Secondly, its not a "lifestyle".  ITs an "orientation" that is biologically determined.

But we can both AGREE that it is a BLESSING that HILLARY CLINTON is on the ballot.

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 08:56PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

On the second part, you totally misunderstood my post.    I was speaking basically with the singer's vernacular, as in "I want to bring 'the gays' from their errant path and wrong lifestyle to a life of virtue and respectability."  I probably should have put the word "lifestyle" in quotes, so the intent would have become clear.  

To the first part:  I don't know.  I am just going with my gut feeling on this.  Logic tells me that the last thing Obama needs right about now is an issue that spreads across the blogs and makes its way into the mainstream media.  This has all the makings of a big multi-day issue, because now everybody will be watching and waiting for "Obama's decision."  He really can't win either way at this point, as if he cans the guy it will still leave a bad taste with many who are now taking offense and will incense this guy's fans and many in the SC AA community.  The other way around you have a similar type of mess.   I can't imagine he would have wanted to create such controversy, so I have to believe that some staffer put the artists lineup together from a gigantic list of availables/possibles and did not know about these issues (meaning, shoddy vetting occured.)

I am not absolutely sure, of course, but that seems to be the most logical explanation.  Obama can read polls (his campaign spends the most of all on polls, after all) and knows that he is falling in some states, stagnating in others, and can ill afford any type of issue at this crucial point in the campaign.  Just my opinion.  

by georgep 2007-10-22 09:58PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

I see your point

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 10:07PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

I have to STRONGLY DISAGREE.....As a gay person,  there is a line in the sand that I have to draw.

I could LIVE with Edwards remarks that he was "Struggling" and "conflicted" even though they are not the IDEAL stance that I would like to see a candidate have.  At least he doesnt call us EVIL PEOPLE and start a CRUSADE AGAINST US who are just trying to live our lives the best we can.

Donnie McClurkin is to GAYS what David Duke is to African Americans....I wish people could understand this.  

And YES,  I am voting for HILLARY in the PRIMARY. But should she lose,  I had always planned on supporting the DEMOCRAT that wins the primary.  I can't if its OBAMA.  

And it sounds like GULLIANI is not the greatest either on this issue.  So I just pray that HILLARY or EDWARDS wins.  

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 08:44PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

So you are comfortable with the fact that Edwards remarks that he is conflicted and can vote for him, yet you will not vote for a candidate who has never expressed that kind of conflict?  I agree this was bad staff work and I understand you would prefer he remove McClurkin from the tour.  He has since made comments clarifying his disagreements with McClurkin and suggesting that McClurkin needs to re-examine his views on these issues.

Obama would likely lose more votes at this point pulling McClurkin from schedule than by keeping him.  I hope that most in the Gay community realize that Obama does not endorse McClurkin's views, just his singing.

by Obama08 2007-10-22 09:02PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

There is nothing in OBAMA's record that would indicate that he is against gays, I agree.  But lets face it, he has a short record.

What he is doing by touring with Donnie McClurkin is saying that he is WILLING to treat the LGBT COMMUNITY as second class citizens, if it means he can get votes.  

That is exactly what Bush did in 2004.  Bush won over a lot of INDEPENDENTS who were supportive of the GAY COMMUNITY in 2000 by speaking to the LOG CABIN SOCIETY, and saying that he felt we should be treated as equals.  Bush BROKE his promise whith his willingness to endorse "A constitutional Ammendment to BAN GAY MARRIAGE"

I dont believe BUSH even cares if gays get married.  But he KNOWS his base did.  Thats why he was willing to sell out his principles to win the votes of the HATE MONGERING HOMOPHOBICS.

And that is what OBAMA is doing now.  HE needs to show that he has the CONVICTION To fire Donnie McClurkin from the tour.  

There are PLENTY of GOSPEL singers to choose from. The fact that he SPECIFICALLY chose THIS ONE tells me that he is INTENTIONALLY Trying to appeal to GAY BASHERS.  And that is sick.

However, if he removes DONNIE McClurkin,  he has the opportunity to be a HERO in the gay community.  Gays will then know he is SERIOUS about TREATING US EQUAL.

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 09:11PM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

I agree and Obama agrees that Donnie McClurkin is wrong on issues pertaining to the LGBT community.  In fact he has repeatedly repudiated leaders in the Black community for not supporting their gay and lesbian brothers and sisters.  His campaign's statement on the issue reflects that.

I have clearly stated my belief that gays and lesbians are our brothers and sisters and should be provided the respect, dignity, and rights of all other citizens. I have consistently spoken directly to African-American religious leaders about the need to overcome the homophobia that persists in some parts of our community so that we can confront issues like HIV/AIDS and broaden the reach of equal rights in this country.

I strongly believe that African Americans and the LGBT community must stand together in the fight for equal rights. And so I strongly disagree with Reverend McClurkin's views and will continue to fight for these rights as President of the United States to ensure that America is a country that spreads tolerance instead of division.

In fact, he makes clear that he views the African American struggle for equality in the same light that he views the gay struggle for equality.  I know that you would like him to disinvite McClurkin, I would like Hillary to fire Penn for his history of Union busting.  However, it has to be understood that neither Hillary's employment of Penn or Obama having McClurkin on this tour serves as an endorsement of all the views held by these individuals.

by Obama08 2007-10-23 09:49AM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

Edwards said he was conflicted over gay marriage.  Since when does Obama support gay marriage?  Your post is disingenuous.

by Rooktoven 2007-10-23 04:41AM | 0 recs
Re: This isn't about tolerance.

Hillary doesn't believe in gay marriage either.  

by pioneer111 2007-10-23 12:12PM | 0 recs
diversity

What's interesting to me is that McClurkin is very famous to anyone who listens to black radio.  Yet the blogsophere seems to be totally ignorant of him, so that he can be turned into an anti-gay symbol by gay bloggers.  An American Idol singer was accused of being anti-gay for singing a Mary Mary song, so this seems to be a standard tactic.

by John DE 2007-10-22 06:31PM | 0 recs
Political correctness gone haywire

This is political correctness gone haywire. There is ONE and ONLY ONE statement that is possible in today's climate about gays.  ANY deviation, of whatever miniscule degree, from that statement makes you a heretic.

We burn heretics at the stake.  Of course, we get in a circular firing squad and shoot at them first.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:37PM | 0 recs
Re: what's the one statement?

Pardon me for my "intolerance" of McClurkin's statements that there's something wrong with me and my family and that I'm cursed.  

Blame the moron staffer who put Obama's campaign in this position, not LGBT people for not sitting down and shutting up about it, and not the principled heterosexual Democrats who are calling Obama on it.

Unless this whole controversy was intended as some bizarre attempt at an anti-gay "Sister Souljah" moment to win points in S.C.--in which case it could have been done much more subtly at much less cost to his campaign--it was a really big mistake, and Obama will pay for it.  

by chiefscribe 2007-10-22 06:46PM | 0 recs
Re: what's the one statement?

RIGHT ON!!!!    There should be a ZERO TOLERANCE policy for this type of HATRED in the DEMOCRATIC PARTY.  

I went to the DNC WEBPAGE....IT lists that The Democratic Party is WELCOMING to LGBT.  IT also states that "HATE IS NOT AN AMERICAN VALUE"

But Donnie McClurkin is a HATE MONGER.  There is no other word for it.  

by Sandy1938 2007-10-22 08:50PM | 0 recs
At this point in time

there is one and only one statement that can be made about gays.  Any other statement makes you a witch.  Witches are burned, after being shot.  That's what's going on here.  We are witch-hunting.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:45PM | 0 recs
Re: At this point in time

That is nonsense, that is not what this is about.  It's about Obama who says he supports the gay community and accepts them for who they are and then having someone represent him on stage (which is what he is doing) who says it's a "curse" and abnormal and something you should not be doing.

by reasonwarrior 2007-10-22 07:01PM | 0 recs
Re: diversity

Isn't Mary Mary also performing? They're possibly anti-gay, too? With a name like -that-?

by BingoL 2007-10-22 06:46PM | 0 recs
Either anti-gay or pro-cloning

Hard to tell....she's a witch ... shoot her/him just to make sure..... she/he might have an INCORRECT OPINION.  

God knows that we can't allow no incorrect opinions.

by dataguy 2007-10-22 06:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Either anti-gay or pro-cloning

I might blow your mind here, but one of the reasons I'm interested in politics is because I deeply believe that some opinions are better than others, and I want to fight for my favorite opinions, while working to ensure that my least favorite opinions  fade away.

That's kinda the whole deal, you know?

by BingoL 2007-10-22 06:51PM | 0 recs
Re: diversity

Mary Mary is performing, and they are very talented.  I actually got to meet them once here in Atlanta when they did an appearance for one of the local radio stations.  I've never heard of them making any kind of statements like McClurkin's.  If you're interested in gosple music, they're defnitely worth checking out.

by Denny Crane 2007-10-22 07:04PM | 0 recs
Re: diversity

John, I really cannot fathom what McClurkin's level of popularity has to do with anything.  It doesn't matter to me if he's sold 1 record or 100 million. the point is that he has made (and continues to make) anti-gay comments about how we are cursed and abnormal, and that simply isn't acceptable to most progressives, especially gay progressives.

"Gay bloggers" didn't turn him into anything - McCLurkin has made his position on this very clear.  Should we just ignore that because he's popular on black radio? McClurkin has been telling his congregation for years that people like me are cursed and abnormal, and Obama's people must have known that when they invited him. If they didn't know, that makes it even more of agiant screw-up.

They could have chosen a dozen other truly excellent gospel singers who don't say things like that, but somebody screwed the pooch on this one.

by Denny Crane 2007-10-22 06:59PM | 0 recs
ok

This is where I condemn McClurkin's anti-gay statements, and hope he moves to renounce this bad policy.  After all, your feeling are 100% legit and Obama is reponsible for his own policies.  I just think that I would have made the same mistake.  

by John DE 2007-10-22 08:07PM | 0 recs
Re: diversity

You don't know what you are talking about- it had nothing to do with Mandisa singing the Mary Mary song "Shackles"- it had to do with what she said before she started singing, which she said if you want to change your "lifestyle," God could help and some wondered what she meant by that, especially since on her AI page, she listed as one of her influences Beth Moore, who has referenced in Moore's book Breaking Free and the links on her website to "ex-gay" groups, including Exodus International and Exodus Youth.  Also, in Mandisa's interview, she said she would never perform at a Gay Festival event because it is against what she believes the Bible to say.  It wasn't about her just singing "a song"- there have several gospel songs on the show and no one has said a word like that about it.

by reasonwarrior 2007-10-22 07:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Well, here it is-

BREAKING: Obama says won't pull anti-gay bigot from big campaign event

http://www.americablog.com/2007/10/break ing-obama-says-wont-pull-anti-gay.html

About 6:40 pm today, the Obama campaign issued a written statement from the candidate saying that he "strongly disagree(s)" with McClurkin's views. Still, a spokesman said McClurkin would remain part of the concert line-up.

by reasonwarrior 2007-10-22 07:38PM | 0 recs
Being African American and Understanding

this I look at it like this.

It will play in Iowa.  And it will play in South Carolina.

This is politics.  Look beyond this.

Obama has a person who has problems with gays, but know his position and the church he goes to.  One that perform gay marriages.  One of the most controversial in this country.  But this man supports Obama.

Mr. McClurkin has issues.  One being attacked and raped repeatedly as a child.

But, I look at this in political terms.  Obama will go and talk directly to the gay community.  But this is political strategy.

And the Black Community like this artist.  I took time off the blog and spoke with both my parents, who knew nothing of this.  But adores the music of McClurkin.

The Black Community has issues with homophobia and HIV/AIDS.  The attitude of "it will not happen to me" meme, but we have the highest STD and AID of any block group.  Hillary Clinton was right about this during the Black Forum in D.C.

This does not excuse or recuse, Mr. McClurkin's comments of the past.  But if we think politically, if Obama threw McClurkin off the tour, every democrat will call him.  Why?  Because they what the Black Vote as well, which is 50% in South Carolina.  And no doubt, that this democrat would stand in a South Carolina Black Church, with McClurkin, speaking on tolerance and understanding.

We know it would happen.  It is politics.

We will soon see this play out.  But one thing for sure, it is not in play in Iowa and it is in play in South Carolina.

by iamready 2007-10-22 07:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Being African American and Understanding

So it is ok for Obama to give this guy a platform so he can make political hay within SC's homophobic and AIDS-phobic community?   That seems like quite the sellout to me.  

by georgep 2007-10-22 10:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Being African American and Understanding

Aren't you the one who's always complaining that Hillary will do anything to win, and yet it's just fine when Obama embraces this bigoted clown to score some points in SC?  For shame.

by Denny Crane 2007-10-22 10:47PM | 0 recs
Bleh

I agree with the quoted person in the article that someone should be fired over this. Obama does not really need this right now. I guess the campaign will probably disinvite McClurkin eventually if things keep on building like they have been.

Anyways, I've made my personal opinion known that this is much ado about nothing, or very little at most. It's extremely obvious this wasn't something intentional on the Obama campaign's part, and that they just made a stupid mistake. Definitely unfortunate from a political standpoint.  

by Korha 2007-10-22 07:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Bleh

yep... and once the elections roll around, the voters will just do that, tell Obama "you're fired"

by sepulvedaj3 2007-10-23 07:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

This shows Obama's campaign inexperience more than anything else about him. This hurts his supporter's arguement that he is more electable than Hillary. I'm not going to say he should fire this guy, but he boxed himself into a corner that he didn't have to box himself into. How could he not have thoroughly vetted every singer is beyond me.

by Christopher Lib 2007-10-22 08:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

If he is seen as disinviting McClurkin, he can hang up South Carolina.

1 out of every 2 Democratic Primary Voters in South Carolina is Black.

83% of Black South Carolinians go to church at least twice a month.

Obama needs to keep McClurkin and that Gospel Tour.

He does NOT need to be seen as putting yet ANOTHER group's agenda BEFORE THE BLACK COMMUNITY. And, that's how it will be seen.

by rikyrah 2007-10-22 08:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Another groups agenda?  You know, I appreciate the unfortunate position Obama now finds himself in, but he nor african americans are victim to the "agenda" of gays.  He could have immediately, quietly disinvited this guy.  These things happen all the time in campaigns, and he had time to stop the bleeding here.  It's disingenious to seemingly fault gays for Obama's misstep.  He's a bigot and he's fundraising for Obama.  

by bookgrl 2007-10-22 09:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Quietly disinvite one of the most popular and beloved religious and gospel figures in the African American Community?  Now, that's funny!

by Dee 2007-10-23 11:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

I hate to tell you this, but there are blacks IN the gay community and part of the black community is part of the gay community.  And you can't tell me that all the blacks who go to church at least twice a month agree with McClurkin and his views- most are not saying to cancel the tour but to cancel McClurkin.  

by reasonwarrior 2007-10-23 03:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Ok, there may be one or two.  Yes, I'm being facetious because it's so laughable how out of touch white progressives are with a segment of the Democratic Party you think you know so much about, but you don't.

by Dee 2007-10-23 11:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Rikyrah,

Clearly Bookgirl and others here don't understand that nothing gets Black folks more riled up than equating Gay rights to African American civil rights.  As you and I know, even Black folks who are highly sympathetic of the struggles of gays and lesbians will be quick to tell you you've crossed the line if you start comparing the struggles or equating the communities.  I'm tempted to post the link to one of the most popular African American sites so folks here can read what Black folks are saying about this issue. It's as hot of an issue there as it is in progressive bloghesphere, but I don't have to tell you that the opinions are as different as night and day (forgive the pun).

by Dee 2007-10-23 11:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

They truly don't understand that nothing riles up the folks of my mother's generation especially, than to hear Gay folks talk about Gay Rights being equal to the Civil Rights Movement. They're not hearing it.

by rikyrah 2007-10-23 02:40PM | 0 recs
NY Times picks up the Obama story

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/ 10/22/obama-criticized-over-singer/

The New York Times is now running the Obama story. I'd say that he has a full-blown campaign issue.

Here's a clue for Mr. Obama. Either quit pissing off the supporters of other candidates by lumping lifelong Democrats in with Bush/Cheney or move out of your glass house.

It's amazing how fast this story went viral on the blogs over the last 24 hours.

by hwc 2007-10-22 10:16PM | 0 recs
A quote from McClurkin

For those of you who think McClurkin isn't so bad, and that this is much ado about nothing, here's a quote from the bigot:


"You can't talk about the redeeming and saving power of Jesus Christ when you're still living in the abominable. I know I may get into trouble with some who may think that I am a little too strong saying that homosexuality is abominable but there's a Bible that I have got to concur with. I've got to agree with it. Not to the slighting of those that are involved but to the pulling down and destroying of the thing that they're involved in. We can't kill the people, the people are too precious to God. Everyone is too important to God and God does not dispose of people!
<snip>
The bottom line is, if I mess up tomorrow and if I'm out in the lifestyle and I'm totally bankrupt of all my morality.I would be the first one to tell them 'Don't follow me. I'm wrong, God is right.' But that's not going to happen!" he laughs.

This fools thinks we (gays) are morally bankrupt, and abominable.  There are plenty of other gospel singers Obama could have invited who don't say stupid shit like this. This isn't about the church or AA concerns, it's about Donnie McClurkin.  He's a bigot.

http://www.crossrhythms.co.uk/articles/m usic/a_pastors_heart/9781/p1/

by Denny Crane 2007-10-22 10:41PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Have any of these politicians ever heard of the intersexed? They're the one's born with both male and female genitalia. Their numbers exceed the number of Down's Syndrome, yet we know more about Down's Syndrome than we do the intersexed.

Then there's the even more elusive group called androgynes. Their genitalia is distinctly male or female, and their brain is predominantly the opposite.

Sexually, they're the opportunistic bunch. They can be heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, unisexual or asexual, usually depending on what opportunities present themselves. And that can last a lifetime.

It's rough on politicians to have to face the reality that we don't live in an either/or world or universe. It's both/and, and that's the way it is.

The questionable historical Jesus is reputed to have said that some are born eunuchs from their mother's womb. (Matthew 19:12). Funny how the wingnut religious right can't seem to find that verse in their bibles.

by Hempy 2007-10-22 10:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Tolerance is such a loaded word, because it means we cannot tolerate certain kinds of speech.  We claim to support everyone's free personal choice, except when it comes to sexuality.  People like McClurkin are hated for two reasons, because they say that the homosexual lifestyle is wrong, and that they chose to ignore their sexual inclinations in ordering their life.

We may not have any choice about what arouses us, but our response to it is completely up to us.  That is where the choice lay.  

By not firing McClurkin, Obama will certainly generate controversy in the blogosphere, but I question whether the audience he is trying to reach by this move will notice.

by Matusleo 2007-10-23 01:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

You show many any tangible evidence where the gay vote or progressive vote for that matter has been a deciding factor in any national or state-wide campaign.  The results would be marginal at best.  On the flip side, the Black church, most of whom share McClurkin's views, are a decisive voting block.  Mr. face of the Party, President Clinton, advised John Kerry to come out against gay marriage because he understood this.

by Dee 2007-10-23 07:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Well, it must be "something" because they sure do seem to go after it.

by reasonwarrior 2007-10-23 04:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

not that I go here for any political news, but even Perez Hilton, Obama's most high profile gay supporter is pissed about this...

by sepulvedaj3 2007-10-23 07:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Well, he lost this gay dude's vote for sure.  This is just the last straw in a line of disappointments from him.  This isn't THE thing that takes away my vote - it's the last thing.  

And, to be clear, it's not that Obama is sharing a stage with this douchebag - it's that Obama is GIVING the douchebag the stage and choosing to associate himself with Donnie.  And the problem is not that Obama is giving a homophobe a stage - it's that he is giving an ACTIVE homophobe a stage, someone who is actively preaching, singing, and writing about how we homos need to be converted back.  

I'm done.

by CoolHandLuc 2007-10-23 09:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

Yeah.  It's probably not an issue - unless you happen to be gay, like me.  I'm interested in a whole range of positions, like the war, the economy, health care - not just LGBT issues.  But this situation is troubling to me.

I realize that politicians have to go wherever the votes are, and that just because someone supports a candidate, it doesn't mean that the candidate agrees with all their supporters' positions.  But to me, the Obama campaign's statement disavowing McClurkin's viewpoint just isn't sufficient to convince me.

I'm looking at a bunch of Democratic candidates with very similar position on most issues.  The fact that Obama is willing to keep this "ex-gay" crusader on his South Carolina stops is indicative to me.  Maybe, as some of you have said, there are more homophobic votes than gay votes.  But if Obama choses to throw me under the bus and go after those votes, he really can't expect mine.  We gays are probably just as dumb as the rest of the electorate, but we're not THAT dumb!

by baliabba 2007-10-23 11:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama Just Lose The Gay Vote?

I am a gay citizen of Mr. Obama's former State Senate district in Illinois. I've watched this 'now I'm with you, now I'm not' nonsense from Mr. Obama for several decades now.

Anyone who believed that Barack Obama is supports the rights of lesbians and gay men is seriously deluding themselves.

For my fellow gay and lesbian voters, do your self a favor. Take your votes and your financial contributions elsewhere!

by srsjones 2007-10-23 11:37AM | 0 recs
This &quot;controversy&quot; is nonsense

Excuse me for saying so, but this supposed "controversy" is complete nonsense, and represents the worst quality of the democratic party, namely the tendency to be thin-skinned and take offense at everything.

Someone at the Obama campaign hired a homophobe to sing at an event. Is this really a news story? It reminds me of 2004, when there was a big piece run shortly before the Iowa Caucuses about how Howard Dean's former bodyguard beat his wife.

The fact that Hillary's campaign took money from questionable donors is a larger issue, but even that begs the question of how much to blame a candidate because a questionable person becomes associated with a campaign. The fact is, in the vast realm of people that donate to or volunteer for a campaign there are going to be jerks or criminals in the mix. If this person had a prominent position in the Obama campaign, this would be a different story, but someone hired to sing at an event is so unimportant it's ludicrous.

This is yet another distraction from the real issues at hand in our country.

by maxlongstreet 2007-10-23 01:14PM | 0 recs
by henrymaddy 2008-02-19 11:19PM | 0 recs

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