Honesty Amongst Friends

The President spoke to the the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest LGBT organization, at their annual dinner. You can view the speech over at the Huffington Post. In his speech, the President noted that "it's important to be honest amongst friends." Well in that vein, I'll admit that I haven't bothered to watch the speech though I will read the transcript, otherwise I might fall prey to his bedazzling rhetoric. In any regard, I'm sure that I've heard it all before. That's Obama's problem. He's long on promises and short on delivery.

It's not that I have lost faith on LGBT issues in the President, I haven't. I'm sure he will move the ball forward on a number of LGBT issues but none of those are going to happen tomorrow. Here's more honesty for Obama from his friends.

John Aravosis asks Where's the Beef?:

Barack Obama just promised us that if he becomes president, he's going to repeal Don't Ask Don't Tell, the Defense of Marriage Act, and get ENDA passed. It was a bit surreal. I'm sitting at a fundraiser for the No on 1 effort in Maine (that Obama didn't even bother to mention), and we were all just speechless (actually, hardly speechless - and I thought yelling at the TV was long since over). Obama repeated his campaign promises. That was it.

Up in Seattle, The Stranger's Dan Savage is also a tad underwhelmed:

My reaction: a friend has been sending me ecstatic emails about the speech. I just watched it--the speech is every bit as good as the ones candidate Obama gave, as the performance candidate Obama delivered at the HRC/Logo Democratic Primary Debate, as the open letter to the LGBT community that candidate Obama released before last November's election. Imagine all the wonderful things this guy is going to accomplish if he ever actually gets elected president. In other words: sorry, folks, nothing new to see here. Pledges, promises, excuses. Lip service.

I sense a pattern developing.

Andy Towle of Towleroad found that "President Obama delivered a speech strong on rhetoric that did not make any new promises or commitments." I'd suggest reading the comments to get a feel on the reaction in the gay community. Here's a sampling:

Charming and substance-free.

If I'd been there I might have bought it, and come away encouraged.

From a great distance it borders on insulting. He can't even be bothered to mention Question 1 or Referendum 7?

When will Obama start giving US quotes WE can use in these populist battles rather than our enemies?

The failure to reference the campaign in Maine or the gay marriage initiative in DC seems to have hit a nerve:

The word "putz" comes to mind. The man does not even have the balls to address Maine and Washington. What the hell good is he?

When all else fails, gay snark:

Will everyone please shut up? He invited gay families to the Easter Egg Roll, didn't he?

While most ran negative, there were a few positive such as this one:

Sorry, but this was a great speech, and words DO matter. If he were planning to bail on us, he did not have to be there tonight, in DC the night before the march. I believe him, and I think I'll be proven right.

I don't see how anyone gay can honestly say this speech was "substance-free." I guess we are becoming more and more trapped in a gay echo chamber online where we forget how crazy-important it is to have the leader of the free world saying a relationship between people of the same gender should be as admired as one between people of opposite genders.

Even the derided Easter remark overlooks that his inviting gay families to that event really WAS a big deal. It made the righties flip their fuckin' gourds and the remark was not, after all, a cornerstone of this speech or anything.

He strongly reiterated that DADT will go.

For me, the only disappointment (considering I didn't expect him to issue a DADT stop-loss on the spot, though I disagree with him on that approach) was, as Andy pointed out, his failure to speak against Question One in Maine and other specific measures.

Otherwise, this speech excited me. When he follows through on his promises, I'll be relieved. (And please, enough with the jealous or anti-materialist or whatever snarking about tuxedoes and champagne. Most people enjoy the finer things in life from time to time...are we supposed to do everything in jeans? I'm not a huge HRC fan because they endorsed Lieberman, but this class-warfar b.s. is embarrassing.)

I hope the march goes as well as Obama's speech--I think both aspects are important and we're all on the same side.

Andrew Sullivan of The Atlantic live blogged it. Count him as part of the underwhelmed crowd.

"I'm here with you in this fight." When are you going to prove it? Answer: by 2017 . . . Now we get the campaign speech on Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Does he not realize he is now in office? "I'm working to end this policy. I will end Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Solmonese has given us the timeline: 2017. This is bullshit . . . His major achievement - the one thing he has actually done - is invite gay families to the Easter egg-roll . . . More campaign boilerplate. This speech could have been made - and was made - a year ago . . .

The folks over at Think Progress focused the part of the speech where the President addressed the vicious attacks on two of his LGBT nominees - Sean Hannity, for example, is attempting to link Kevin Jennings to NAMBLA.

Obama also addressed right-wing criticisms being hurled at his LGBT nominees and staffers, such as EEOC nominee Chai Feldblum and Department of Education official Kevin Jennings. Both have been the subjects of extremely homophobic slurs. WorldNetDaily editor and CEO Joseph Farrah said that Obama must find "people" like Feldblum on "Perverts.gov," and the Traditional Values Coalition wrote that she wanted "the gay agenda to trump the First Amendment and religious freedom." Rep. Steve King (R-IA) has claimed that Jennings wants to push a "homosexual agenda" in U.S. schools.

Actually Congressman King declared just the other day that he thinks "Kevin Jennings has got to be the poster boy for NAMBLA."

Here's the quote that has Rep. King and Sean Hannity calling for Jennings' head:

One of the people that's always inspired me is Harry Hay, who started the first ongoing gay rights groups in America. In 1948, he tried to get people to join the Mattachine Society. It took him two years to find one other person who would join. Well, in 1993, Harry Hay marched with a million people in Washington, who thought he had a good idea 40 years before.

And they accuse Harry Hay, who died in 2002, of being involved with NAMBLA even though he has never been a member of that organization. At some point someone in the Administration is going to have to step up and defend their nominees by name. Otherwise the right-wing smear campaign takes on a life of its own.

Tags: DADT, LGBT Issues, President Barack Obama (all tags)



Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

He could have pointed out two things that would have made the speech a breakthrough-- a time table for action or a specific list of actions he will undertake in the near future even without a time table for action. Either one of which would come across as more than just a repeat of the speech he has been giving since the primaries. Because he refused to do either one, we are left with very little more than the same promises we have heard since the primaries. A lot of people are happy that he is saying anything about gay people at all, but this strikes me as the same sort of mentality that describes everyone who defends this President- they are happy that he's not Bush or that he's showing up. That's a very low bar, and at a juncture where we need leadership it is a dangerous one.

by bruh3 2009-10-10 10:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Rubbish. It's only 10 months into a 4 year term. He will end it, but it will take time. Even Jim Crow wasn't over-turned overnight. In the meantime millions of people have no jobs, millions more lack health insurance, hundreds are dying in a war. Give the guy a break.

You would have thought 8 years of GW Bush would taught some patience ;).

by vecky 2009-10-10 10:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Jim Crow was ended through judicial rather than legislative process. Judicial process is a much slower process. But, continue...

by bruh3 2009-10-10 11:02PM | 0 recs
Well then

Get on the judicial and legislative branches and get off Obama's back on this.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 09:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Well then

Go after the legislativeadn judicial branches and get off Obama's back???

We can't do that! This is the Blog Birch Society!


We're not into actually putting our efforts where they might do the most good. We're into wimpersing "I'm disappointed with (insert liberal initative, candidate or commentator here)."

by spirowasright 2009-10-11 11:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Well then

Multiple strategies are being pursued from pressuring Congress, to local actions, to state actions, to federal to judicial, through the private sector, and yes, pressuring PResident Obama. Your ignorance of this is stunning if it were not for the fact that I know this is not about the issue. It is and will continue to be for you crazies about protecting President Obama.  So, each statment is met by you in the exact same way- hijack by moving the ball to something other than PResident Obama. 100 percent grade A nuts.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 11:50AM | 0 recs
Re: 10 months...

Of course, ten months into the presidency, he has the Nobel Peace Prize. ;)

by nycweboy1 2009-10-11 05:20AM | 0 recs
Re: 10 months...

Thank you Glenn Beck.

by spirowasright 2009-10-11 09:09AM | 0 recs
Re: 10 months...

Heh- thanks for pointing out the way they talk out of both sides off their mouths

by bruh3 2009-10-11 11:55AM | 0 recs
Re: 10 months...

Yes, 'they' do.

Interesting to see that the circle of crazed Obama sycophants and Bruh3 persecutors has now expanded to include the Nobel committee.

by Jess81 2009-10-11 01:41PM | 0 recs
Re: 10 months...

Yes, jesse, you and other crazies do talk out of both sides of your mouth.

If you once tried to basically offer up level criticism that may be different, but you don't.

For comparison, when I thought the Peace Prize odd, someone disagree with me by saying they are giving it to him because of the direction he is pushing the country as encouragement to continue the shifts.

I thought- that  makes sense so I accepted it as an argument.

However, you nutcases could not be happy with that view-that it is encouragement. No, you had to argue that yes indeed, President Obama already has a record of doing things in the past that proves he deserves it now. Not as encouragement for keeping on the right path but for deeds already done.

It is the hyperbole that makes you absurd. One can say that President Obama may one day deserve the award based on his future actions performed, but right now such a claim is solely based on potential.

If one of you nutjobs for once could be balanced in your arguments it might actually be useful. Instead, we got people like you and Vecky, whom you by siding with here, arguing that gays should shut up (as she does) because it is really not as bad it was for blacks or that we should wait because they had to wait and on and on and on with the defend Obama at all cost insanity.

When you engage in this say anything to defend Obama at all cost approach, it ceases to be a serious debate. You begin to tal out of both sides of your mouth in ways that are not logical and indeed are contradictory.

You will say both he has done things to deserve the Nobel Prize although he's only been on office 9 months, but then claim in the same breath but he's only been in office 9 months so he could not have done anything.

Notice here too- the difference between the sychophants and me. I am not saying I expected President Obama to have solved gay rights issues today.

I am saying like most I want some sort of time table or indicators because he has been giving these promises for a while and he needs to give more.

Your response?  You nut jobs are offended by even that idea. How dare I ask the great one for time tables or bench marks. Thus, your mindset in a nutshell , and why you are nutjobs. You can convince the American public of this faux reasoning, but most people paying attention can figure out for themselves how full of crap you are.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 02:43PM | 0 recs
Re: 10 months...

None of what you said has anything to do with any of my actual opinions.

The last time I said that, you took an old exchange of ours and actually edited it to make it seem like I had said something that I had not.  So here's your chance to show you're not a liar.  Find any instance - any instance at all where I have said or even obliquely implied that gay people need to shut up.  Start with this thread.  I made a comment yesterday that could help you along.

Then find a comment I made about the Nobel Prize that resembles your characature in any way.  Otherwise, retract your latest lie.

by Jess81 2009-10-12 05:26AM | 0 recs
Re: 10 months...

Oh, and it's Jessie.  Jesse is a dude's name.

by Jess81 2009-10-12 02:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Vecky- I don't know how old you are, but I have been pushing (like many of my brothers and sisters) for gay equality for 30 years.  And the struggle started well before my time.  So, yes, my patience is worn thin.  

If you don't care about gay equality that's your prerogative.  But if you are going to opine on an issue, you might find it helpful to know the history behind it.  Many of us existed before George Bush and reject this puerile notion that the yardstick to measure our politicians is whether they are worse than GWB.  You may be happy with such a low bar, but those of us who are fighting for equality employ a more substantive standard.

by orestes 2009-10-11 02:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I used Jim Crow as representative of the Civil Rights movement. Brown vs. BoE happened in 1954 it was only until 1964 and 1965 that Civil Rights was enshrined into law.

Kennedy, who ran on a civil rights platform, was elected in 1961, in calmer times. He proceeded slowly on civil rights for a couple of years, it was only in 1963 that he became more involved. Obama is not moving nearly as slowly, while having far more to deal with.

by vecky 2009-10-10 11:15PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

The gay rights movement began outwardly in the 1970s with Stonewall, and well, before Stonewall.  Using the time period for Jim Crow to fall is a false comparison because unlike Jim Crow we are not waiting to build up court precedent.

We are not even waiting on DADT for public opinion since we are discussing a repeal with 70 to 80 percent approval in the general population and majority approval in the military. We are waiting on political courage. I would have given President Obama a pass if he listed specific action. Instead, I heard what I heard last year, which is the same thing that this man heard:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QroCqzef y0

This decorated vet has since been discharged for no other crime than being a gay man.

No one is questioning patience. But they are questioning wait without specifics and waiting without action. The fact is that Reid of all people sent a letter to Obama asking for leadership on this issue from the White House. I know President Obama is great at speeches, but they are not enough.

Without action as my great grandmother would say you will be waiting forever. Thats the concern, and it is not helped by the HRC saying of their invited guess that we should wait until 2017.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 12:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Look... It's bullshit.   Everyone knows it.. DADT, DOMA, and all the rest is prejudicial bullshit.  

I'm sure my next comments are going to to be flamed....  This is not a defense of Obama in these actions but rather perhaps an explanation on the whys.  I'm not saying the why's should necessarily be acceptable to the gay community, but at least from the perspective of a straight male progressive, I know many who feel the way I am going to say right now.

Most straight progressives are supporters of gay rights.   We want to see all the prejudicial bullshit overturned.   But because those aspects of a progressive platform do not affect us every day, they are not on the forefront of our minds and the forefront of what we want passed.  It's not priority #1, 2 or 3... in fact, its probably mid way down the priority list.  There are just other things in many of our minds that are way more important to pass or get taken care of first, which means allowing a smaller minority to continue to be fucked over while working toward the goals that some of us feel are more important.   Yeah, that sucks... I agree its total bullshit and I feel bad about feeling that way.  But unfortunately, there is only so much that can be done at a time and if I have to choose between going after Health Care Reform first or the Repeal of DADT and DOMA, I'm going to choose health care reform everytime.  I am assuming that is the thinking in the sometimes overly cautious White House... My guess is until some of the legislative issues that are more important to the administration and the party in general (because I also don't hear much of party leadership actively promoting and pushing for DOMA and DADT to happen now), that they are scared that pushing these repeals will galvanize the wingnuts further.  Again, its bullshit and its unfair... but it seems to be the case.

And I also understand the sense of Urgency among the gay community and others whose most important agenda items are gay equality and marriage equality.   Had Prop 8 not passed, I'm not sure the same urgency and anger would be there... I may be wrong and I'm sure there are those who will tell me I am... but I remember before Prop 8 a lot of people within the gay community preaching patience, especially after the 2004 election and all the amendments.    However, it did pass, and I think many people saw that even in one of the most liberal states, these awful laws could be passed and that complacency cost them the right of marriage equality in CA.    I completely understand the urgency... I think all of us feel it about different issues... I know I do about health care reform... we all want our slice of the pie now and people are going to be fucked over.  

That's the problem I see in all this... The gay community has a lot of supporters... just not enough who feel that this is the most important thing to get done now, even if, from a human rights assessment, its one of the most important after healthcare.    It sucks... it really does... but I also think its an honest assessment of the situation and why HRC said 2017... Because your issues are not at the top of the heap, you'll continue to get screwed.    

I do think Obama could have mentioned Maine and DC... Again, I think that is the overcautious nature of the WH afraid of a 1994 midterm situation brewing.... I hope after Healthcare is done, they do look at spending the capital to at least repeal DADT (I don't think DOMA will happen without judicial intervention).... I have my doubts it will happen, because I think a jobs bill and immigration reform are higher priorities to Dem leaders... but I really do hope that something is done sooner rather than later.

That's all... as I said... not defending Obama, not saying the gay community isn't being screwed... just trying to explain the way a lot of us who are honest with ourselves feel.    

by 30000Fine 2009-10-11 01:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

By the way- I am African American. So when you say wait by using race as a basis of endorsing that view, I find that to be a poor choice because as my great grand mother also used to say from hearing from others "We waited long enough. The time for wait is over. We require action."

by bruh3 2009-10-11 12:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Your right about the comparison, it's a weak one because black civil rights was both far more urgent and far more social apparent. You don't have stuff like Freedom Riders or Federal troops escorting gays into schools like then. The sense of urgency simply isn't apparent. Not to mention that Democrats have in recent years tired to frame the debate (on gay marriage) as a states-right issue and oppose federal laws banning it on those grounds. That's a far step from the 1960s civil rights.

On DADT is a law and only Congress has the power to repeal that law. Congress has debated HCR for 6 months and waffled on the public option even though it enjoys broad support. They've barely moved the bills out of committee which is only the first step. Obama wanted a bill on his desk at the end of August. Had all that happened we would have seen more progress on DADT.

by vecky 2009-10-11 09:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

You are nasty piece of work. Good luck.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 10:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I am both African - American and gay. Your post is extremely offensive. You are playing the oppression olympics trying to say one form of oppression is worse than another. You have no idea what you are talking about. Being black and gay, and having grown up poor, I am very clear about the impact of how my being gay produced bigotry in ways that you can not image. Folks like you come on here spouting your support of continued oppression because you support PResident Obama, and it costs you nothing. It is truly sad what your emotional priorities are. The effect of being poor and gay, for example, is something that someone like you and the wealthy gays of HRC can not imagine. It is just as hard being poor and gay as black and gay because you are just as stuck in a society that is trying to deny you opportunity to live your life as all Americans want to live it. Your posts are really, really offensive.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 12:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I use as my bar FDR, and then JFK. I want Obama to reach those heights and we should push him to do so. I am annoyed that DODT is still here, EFCA is not, and their is no push for universal health care. Let's get some historical perspective though. Obama has accomplished more in his first 9 months than either JFK or FDR.

I agree we should hold his feet to the fire, but it just seems like some posters and commenters here are focusing more on bashing his "bedazzling" ways, and being snarky in an unhelpful Newsmax way.

It comes off as juvenile, sour grapes.

by alectimmerman 2009-10-11 03:46AM | 0 recs
not mentioning Maine

is something I can't understand at all. I don't think Obama should be faulted for not pressing ahead on repealing DOMA, because Congress won't repeal that law until many more states have legalized same-sex marriage in my opinion.

But if Obama shares the goal of repealing DOMA at the federal level, he must understand how critical it is for Prop 1 to be defeated in Maine. If "even liberal Maine" overturns same-sex marriage, it will immeasurably set back the effort of persuading members of Congress.

by desmoinesdem 2009-10-11 03:57AM | 0 recs
Re: not mentioning Maine

That was his sin of omission, really. Otherwise, it's a great speech.

by Charles Lemos 2009-10-11 01:04PM | 0 recs
Re: not mentioning Maine

I would agree... the only think I can think of is they are afraid of pissing off someone in the HCR efforts and are being OVERLY cautious... probably the biggest issue I have with the Obama WH thus far... I wish they'd quit being so cautious... I think his campaign was always much stronger when they weren't playing it safe.

by 30000Fine 2009-10-11 01:14PM | 0 recs
Re: not mentioning Maine

You cannot compare campaigning and governing.  Campaigning is all about making promises, that's the easy part.  Governing is about doing.  So, I don't see how you can say Obama wasn't playing it safe during the campaign.  He was telling people what they wanted to hear to get them to vote for him.  Every politician does it.  The proof, however, is in the pudding.  And Obama is never going to be daring.  He's too entrenched in the DC establishment to do so.  Look at his abysmal handling of the financial industry.

by orestes 2009-10-11 02:27PM | 0 recs
should have done more on DADT, ENDA

If we couldn't get those done this year, it probably won't happen in an election year either, and if Republicans make gains in 2010, Congressional Democrats may be afraid to push ahead on these in 2011.

I wanted Obama to halt discharges under DADT pending a thorough review of the policy, but if he wasn't willing to go that route, his administration should have pushed for DADT repeal to be included in the defense appropriations bill for 2010.

by desmoinesdem 2009-10-11 04:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

The other problem with the president's inactivity is that we may have a small window of opportunity to see progress.  What happens if the Democrats lose big in 2010?  Then the excuse will be, "We don't have the votes to pursue the gay agenda."  Time may be on our side in the long run, but the "long run" could easily turn into a "long, long time."

by candideinnc 2009-10-11 05:16AM | 0 recs
Then don't lose big in 2010

by DTOzone 2009-10-11 05:53AM | 0 recs
Re: Then don't lose big in 2010

Sorry, that isn't something I can promise.

by candideinnc 2009-10-11 07:07AM | 0 recs
They won't

And the more Obama rushes, the greater the chance of blowback and actual losses.

People are threatened by changes. Which is why Obama, who has done more than FDR and JFK in his first 9 months (and had more distractions), makes his change gradual and often under the radar.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 10:01AM | 0 recs
Re: They won't

I disagree with your basic premise.  Please provide support for your conclusion that people are afraid of change.  And do not give me some DC talking heads.  If I recall correctly, Obama's entire campaign was centered around change- which the people desperately wanted.  The failure to give us change, rather than a fear of real change, would more likely be Obama's undoing.  

Furthermore, blowback and losses are part of promoting an agenda.  This cowardly approach of not rocking the boat has gotten the Democrats nowhere over the past thirty years and will be no more successful this time.

by orestes 2009-10-11 02:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I agree 100%..  I'll bet everything I own that the WH feels that there could be a limited window of opportunity to get things accomplished... the problem for the gay community is that their civil rights are obviously not considered to be as big of a priority as Healthcare, Jobs, Afganistan and Immigration reform.   Whether they SHOULD be is another debate... I definately would rank DADT and DOMA above Afganistan and below Healthcare and Jobs...

by 30000Fine 2009-10-11 01:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

There seem to be a handfull of posters here, or prominence, who seem to have nothing to say other than "Obama isn't doing what I WANT fast enough!  He is just as bad as Bush because he won't do what I WANT!  Well, he better do what I WANT, or else there will be consequences, like me writing more critical blogs!"

I understand the frustration of having to wait for moral issues to move forward, but I also know that if they are rammed down the populations throat, it will cause a backlash AGAINST what should be seen as a morally correct stand.

Comments like "his bedazzling rhetoric", and many other small back-handed comments I see on this site, only show how petty the posters are and eventually undermine the very causes we all want to see moved forward.  That attitude promotes the very arrogance that we JUST got rid of.  The morally correct nature of the subject will not cancel that out...I do not believe in any "the ends justify the means" actions, they are just another form of bullying.

by Hammer1001 2009-10-11 06:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

If there's a measure of frustration I think it lies in confounding logic like "you have to wait for your basic rights to be protected until everyone feels okay about it" that lurk in suggestions like "if they are rammed down the populations throat, it will cause a backlash AGAINST what should be seen as a morally correct stand.". Basic rights are not about the prevailing fashion, or everyobody feeling good about them. They are things that should be done because they are the right, decent thing to do. If we wait for everyone to get on board... it will never happen. That's the history gay people know all to well.

And the reason for frustration with rhetoric - even the "dazzling" rhetoric of Barack Obama - it's because rhetoric isn't action. Since the campaign last year, a fascinating standard for evaluating Obama has developed, in which we credit his promises as if they are actually taking action. And they aren't. He gives great speeches, full of brave, even challenging ideas. The question, though, is about the execution of ectual proposals, the follow through of actually doing what is promised. DADT is still there. DOMA still applies. ENDA is still a bill, not a law. When President Obama does the things he promises - if he does them - then I, and many others will be especiallyt pleased. Until then... they're not done. That's the reality. And saying... you have to keep waiting, be patient... is neither new, nor especially helpful. President Obama is in a position - even the Nobel committee reminds us - to do things. He should do them, and stop promising to do them. Get it done. And that, we can appalud.

by nycweboy1 2009-10-11 07:02AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

You know, by your attitude, we SHOULD live under a dictator.  America is NOT Plato's Republic and under your rules we should all have been cheering on King George III when he and Dick were in office.

You know, berate people who feel different than you, steam roll them, make them acknowledge your moral correctness.  You know, DO SOMETHING instead of slowly talking people into it and making it more comfortable.  

Because waiting a extra year or two to openly be able to serve in the military or have marriage/civil union rights is equal to the propertization and exploitation of the minorities in this country, or women.

I WANT equality, but unless you want to go to war with people and have deaths associated with this movement, it needs TIME to work...is your cause worth doing right, or are you pissed it is not being done on YOUR timeline?

by Hammer1001 2009-10-11 11:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

We live in a constitutional republican form of democracy. That means that there are a bill of rights that includes the equal protection clause. that clause is not subject to the whims of the majority. This was settled in Brown v Board of Education decades ago. If you want to reopen that can of worms. Please feel free to do so. But realize, that it burns not just gays but all other minority groups as well. People like you in your blindness and ignorance (and yes, when you compare  discussions of equal protection to dictatorship that's coming from a place of utter ignorance) are why this country is on a decline. A country can not survive with this level of ignorance.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 12:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Well put.

I understand that Obama is working on these issues and I believe that this Administration will move the ball forward on LGBT issues. They ain't just going to get done tomorrow.

by Charles Lemos 2009-10-11 01:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I do not understand how your analysis is a response to what the poster wrote.

Either people like Harry Reid are lying when they send letters to President Obama asking him for leadership on questions like Don't ask, Don't tell, or something is being lost is translation.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 01:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I think on DADT, Obama is letting the process work through both the Congress and the DoD. There has been movement. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand got Senator Levin to hold hearings. At the start of this month, the military journal Joint Force Quarterly published an essay that argues forcefully for repealing DADT. So the process is moving.

It's hard to read Obama at times. He seems detached but I think he is really quite engaged. We just don't always see it.

The recent bruhaha over the Afghan troop request is a case in point. Conservatives accused the President of essentially blowing off McChrystal when in fact the President seems to be in a very deliberate fact-finding and consultative mode.

I recall an interview that Robert Gates gave in which he noted that Obama was "more analytical" than Bush, and that Obama makes a concerted attempt to hear the views of every player involved in an issue. I think Gates is right. But that concerted effort takes time.

by Charles Lemos 2009-10-11 01:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

We can not know any of the things you are describing is true or no or even whether it is a result of President Obama or not. The pressure that a president can provide due to White House whipping the issues in Congress are not the same as what a Sen. Gillibrand, who is trying to prove her liberal bona fides, can provide.  My point is, your assumption about President Obama role  on these processes, may or may not be true. Because it may or may not be true, the best assumption is that it is not, and to pressure him accordingly on the chance that it is not true. That's the safe bet rather than assuming that it is.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 01:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Constructive question...

Are you afraid of blowback... such was seen in 2004 with the rush to State Amendments due to the Mass Gay Marriage ruling in summer of 2004... if these repeals are pushed to quickly?   Is the risk of the blowback worth the reward, even if that risk means a Constitutional Amendment banning gay marriage?  Or is patience better and waiting 4-5 years until public opinion is strongly on the side of DOMA... something we have seen with DADT and with civil unions in polling as more Americans support gay marriage... in other words, the natural course appearing to be not IF gay marriage is nationally recognized but when?  

I know Prop 8 changed a lot of people's mindset on this question, which is why I'm curious.

I ask out of curiosity, not out of any opinion or such.  I have gotten different answers from different gay friends, and I am curious on the opinions of some of the gay MyDD members.

by 30000Fine 2009-10-11 01:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

a) 80 percent of the public supports repeal of DADT

b) The so-called values issues of 2004 were thoroughly debunked at the time. It was not gay marriage that won the day for Republicans. If you are interestedin teh subject, do a google search of gay marriage, 2004, values voter and probably terms like analysis of impact.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 01:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

This problem you describe is one that comes up repeatedly with this administration on the three issues that I follow- gay rights, health care and economics.

The problem is that people want to trust President Obama, and, then offer as evidence that their trust is valid some speech or another that he has done.

This is a problem because when one is following these issues in terms of the substance where no one is watching, the truth is far different than the speeches.

For example, based on the speeches, people will say, be patient. See President Obama is working on DADT (for example).

Except, that he is not working on it unless  his military people (who say they have heard nothing from the White House or also say that they will not be taking up the issue anytime soon), the HRC (which says that we should wait until 2017),  and Harry Reid (who sent a letter requesting leader on the issue) are all lying or severely misinformed about some super secret strategy
unknown to any of the key players.  At some point, there must be action that backs up the claims, but all we keep hearing are claims, and the anger by true believers that not everyone is buying it.

I have seen this in both health care and on economic issues. On health care, with the public option, we are suppose to believe that President Obama has strong support for it rather than lukewarm, yeah, if I am forced support.  

This is true despite Sen. Harkin saying we could have the PO if President Obama whipped for it, the statements of various members of the White House staff, etc. Again, a circumstance where these are the things occurring, but anyone pointing this out is demonized.

On the economy, we have a situation where the policy outlook is so clearly neoliberal in bent, his staff is neoliberal in bent, and the list of things left off the table (such as taking large banks into receivership) all tell us that he is in fact a neoliberal. Yet, we are told he is doing the right things despite the prior failure of neoliberalism to adjust the sorts of economic issues we are facing. It comes down to them trusting President Obama, and those of us who are skeptical being told "why don't we trust him."

I get your post. You are saying you want proof. Not just words. but some tangible proof that he is doing what he wants people to infer from his speeches. I agree with this. For me, it is incredibly easy to promise things. I do not expect that everything promised will occur or that we will even win. But the problem is the inconsistencies. I can not ignore them. My skeptical nature makes me question any belief in a politician when I see the gap between what that politician says and what is being reported about their actions over time. The divide in this diary like others before it is the divide between the skeptics and the true believers.  I don't think that gap can be bridge in a short period of time.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 01:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I like your post.  The only thing I'd possibly add is that in practice, you have to insist on everything NOW NOW NOW if you want anything done at all.  The back-and-forth about whether Obama has really done anything behind the scenes or if he's had enough time or if he intends to do anything at all or maybe change will come after healthcare might make for interesting conversation, but it cannot be the face of the movement.  The face of the movement has to be 'We demand equality now."

I like HRC but I don't understand why they don't always seem to get that.

by Jess81 2009-10-11 01:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I am sorry you aren't as concerned about our issues as we are.  I apologize for our arrogance, backhandedness, moral correctness and bullying.  Hope that makes you feel better.  (You call US arrogant?!)

by candideinnc 2009-10-11 07:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Be sorry all you want, you are not who I am talking about.  But feel free to be injured on someone else's behalf.

I am a supporter of the right we want to be respected.  I spoke up against the "moral" crusade against gay marriage.  I am in the middle of the religous side of the entire debate as well.

Oh well, what do I care?  I am sure Obama can handle all of the outrage this gr8t site can blog up...it just pisses me off to see people on the progressive end fly off the deep end, (and yes, it looks like that to me with all the gloom/doom threads here), like all the right wing nuts who despair the loss of America to the heathens.

by Hammer1001 2009-10-11 11:09AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends
Psst! Wanna hear a secret?
I think that if you crossed W's style with DDennis Kucinich's philosophy, you'd have the Blog Birch Society's dream President. Heck, they may even wait a year before being disappointed with him.
by spirowasright 2009-10-11 09:14AM | 0 recs
Thank you

I noted the same, above, before even reading your response.

People are threatened by change. This President has already done more than JFK and FDR in his first 9 months, and has had far more distractions, and far less money with which to work.

If Obama makes a promise, I believe him.

Assuming he even has time, if he moves too fast, there could be blowback which would undo all our efforts.

I believe Obama is moving at a pace he and his Administration believe is the most likely to result in success.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 10:06AM | 0 recs
Re: Thank you

Isn't this the same kind of "faith" the right wing put in GWB?  What differentiates you from those ignorant voters?

by orestes 2009-10-11 02:40PM | 0 recs
The fallacy of the loaded question.

What differentiates you from pedophiles?
What differentiates you from nazis?
And worst of all, what differentiates you from George W. Bush himself, asserting that one is either with him or with the enemy? which is what you have done here.

Ignoring the atrociously faulty second question, the difference, which should have been abundantly clear to any human being, and those gorillas that can use sign language, is that these initiatives require: a) time and b) multiple branches of government, for which Obama is only one. Did you not have middle school civics?

Your buddy George W was in office 8 years, and the faith the right put in him was rewarded. So excise me for having faith in Obama. Int he mean time, take your I WANT CHANGE AND I WANTED IT YESTERDAY juvenile impatience and go choke on it.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 03:21PM | 0 recs
Re: The fallacy of the loaded question.

Ooh.  That hurt.  You're awfully thin-skinned, aren't you?  Another trait you share with the rightwing faith-based voters and idolators of presidents.  

Since you appear to be too young to understand how politics works in the grown-up world, let me explain.  The political process functions when people make demands on their government.  Surely, YOU learned that in middle school, didn't you?  I recommend you review the chapters on suffrage and the civil rights movement.  That is the fundament of political engagement.  You fight for what is right.  And you don't let up because someone promises you- ssh, just be quiet for now and I promise you'll be treated like a first-class citizen someday.  Which, for your education, is a line the gay community has heard from so-called supportive, well-meaning politicians for the past 30 years at least.  And look where we are today.  Ah, but to your worldly wisdom (how old are you really?  I would bet not older than 26), this is juvenile impatience.  Come back to me when you've actually been affected by some wrong and we'll see how impatient you are.  For now, continue to live your over-privileged life.  And start boning up on your social history.

by orestes 2009-10-11 03:40PM | 0 recs
Did Obama ever say to be quiet?

Did he? Did he ever say to stop fighting?

Listen, I'm sorry you feel like life took a crap on you, but when you resort to the dogmatism of one either being with us or against us, you're as bad as them.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 04:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama ever say to be quiet?

Yes, he did.  December of 2008, Obama told the gays to dial it down a notch on the choice of his speaker at his swearing in.  He didn't change speakers, he turned on the gay supporters.  That is his pattern.

by candideinnc 2009-10-12 07:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Did Obama ever say to be quiet?

I was not putting those precise words into Obama's mouth, but he has been pretty clear that he would like teh gays to just wait their turn (which implies doing so quietly).  That's certainly the message HRC got and bought.  You can spout platitudes such as "when you resort to the dogmatism of one either being with us or against us, you're as bad as them" but, as such, they are hollow.  Perhaps you have no real experience with struggle, which would explain your attitude.  To those who have not struggled, nothing has ever been at stake, so there's no need to be angry, frustrated and more sadly, no empathy for those who do struggle.  Remember- sympathy is not the same as empathy.  That is how you can demonstrate your insensitivity to the experience/struggles of others when you accuse the oppressed as juveniles.

Furthermore, I don't believe people are either for me or against me.  I recognize there are those who are agnostic as well.  What I do believe is that those who tell me they support our cause, but then berate gay and lesbian people for not being patient, for not waiting until the issues of the privileged white people are addressed first, are not really allies in the battle because they don't really believe in the cause.

by orestes 2009-10-12 08:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Obama, all talk - no walk.

by Stoic 2009-10-11 07:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Guess everyone should just give up then.

by Jess81 2009-10-11 02:02PM | 0 recs
Yeah, he talked about the $800 billion stimulus
Oh wait. Here's some "walk" for you to educate yourself with:
  • Ordered ordering the closing of Guantanamo Bay by January 2010.
  • Signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009, overruling the Supreme Court.
  • Issued a directive to the military to draft plans for withdrawing troops from Iraq.
  • Signed the reauthorization of SCHIP to cover an additional 4 million children currently uninsured.
  • Reversed George W. Bush's ban on federal funding to foreign establishments that allow abortions.
  • Reduced the secrecy given to presidential records and changed procedures to promote disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act.
  • Repealed a Bush-era policy that prevented federal tax dollars from being used to fund research on new lines of embryonic stem cells.
  • Announced new regulations on power plants, factories and oil refineries in an attempt to limit greenhouse gas emissions and to curb global warming.
  • Signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, a $787 billion economic stimulus package aimed at helping the economy recover from the deepening worldwide recession.
  • Renewed loans for General Motors and Chrysler Corporation.
  • Announced a new era in foreign relations with Russia and Europe.

And here is some more. So yeah, thanks for playing.
by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 03:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

I will give the President latitude and believe he will do what he says he'll do. He has the will, the power, the numbers in Congress to push through all that he says he'll do. If he does not do it, then don't expect the LGBT community to be there for you, Mr. President (or democrats) in the next election. So - his timeline is clear - ANYTHING before the next round of elections.

by nikkid 2009-10-11 07:51AM | 0 recs
Did you say 'faith'?

That makes you as bad as the Republicans! /snark

Seriously, everyone feels the same way. I'd say the timeline is 2012. And he's barely 18% of the way there.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 03:31PM | 0 recs

I find it interesting that for people so active in the political community and with such a deep understanding of the realities that surround policy so many here are completely unable, or unwilling, to understand political reality.

We blamed Bush for eight years of pushing an agenda that was dangerous to this country. Now Obama is spending his Presidency pushing an agenda that will, if we allow it to, bring us back from the brink. That is what the President does, he sets the Agenda, he advocates for it, and he does what is in HIS power to accomplish it.

He doesn't do this alone. Which makes me wonder why I don't see front page posts about holding Harry Reid's feet to the fire, or perhaps our Madame Speaker's. These things we want, these things our President wants, all require congressional action to either be lasting change or, in many cases, to happen at all.

You blame Obama for the fact that DOMA and DADT haven't been repealed. You blame Obama for the fact that EFCA and Universal Healthcare aren't realities yet. But these things don't happen by the will of one person, not even the President. If you really want to see these changes then start pushing hard on more than just the President. But if you really want to do is just complain about whoever is in power than keep doing that. But I assure you it wouldn't be nearly as useful as dropping the fantasy that Obama can do all of these things with a wave of his finger if he wanted to and start demanding action from the Congress, and specifically the Senate.

by JDF 2009-10-11 08:42AM | 0 recs
do you deny

that when something is really important to the White House arms are twisted to get it passed?

Obama was on the phone with senators last fall, even before he was elected, urging them to vote for the Wall Street bailout.

Sweeteners were added to the war supplemental bill in June, and House progressives were threatened that there would be hell to pay if they didn't get that passed.

It's too early to expect Obama to do anything about DOMA, in my opinion, but the White House clearly could be doing more to get DADT repealed.

by desmoinesdem 2009-10-11 11:42AM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

The difference between the votes you pointed to and things like DADT and DOMA are that the bailout bill and the war supplemental were both time sensitive. Now, all things are time sensitive in their own way, but DADT can be repealed at anytime (I think we all agree that sooner is better than later, but it will be a good thing regardless of when it happens,) by comparison the bailout, for it to do what it needed to do (now whether or not it did is another argument,) it had to be passed immediately; the same is true of the war supplemental.

You also pointed out another reason, I think, that these things are taking time. Obama doesn't want to give the whole store away everytime he wants something passed. He did it with the bailout AND he did it with the war supplemental.

I understand how it is frustrating that he is not doing the same thing to get these things passed, but from a political perspective it makes sense. Now I am not saying that pressure shouldn't be applied, it should be applied. But there is a difference between applying pressure and of speaking of Obama with the level of disdain that I so often see here. The speed with which many here have seemed to abandoned him alarms me because we have little chance of holding our majorities in Congress OR holding the White House if we do not support our people, and I truly believe that the President is one of our people.  

by JDF 2009-10-11 12:11PM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

tell that to people like Dan Choi who lost his job this year because folks like you can simply pretend there is no harm under DADT. indeed, with every issue being discussed- it is always to play the denial of harm to gays game. "Oh that's not urgent because the harm is not urgent." Not urgent to you, does not mean not urgent. It just means you don't give a shit.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 01:01PM | 0 recs
The needs of the many...

...outweigh the needs of the few, or the one.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 03:39PM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

Accung me of not "not giving a shit" is offensive in the extreme. You attack me and ignore the validity of my argument and you respond to things I never said.

by JDF 2009-10-11 05:44PM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

Oh please. Give the faux offense a rest. I no more believe you than I believe the Christian right when it feigns victimhood because they are not allowed to do whatever they want to gays.   Like I said, pull this bullshit with Dan Choi. Pull this shit with the black and latino gay families in NY state who do not have the same rights as others because of so called Democrats who don't give a crap about them. They are the harmed party here. You are just some guy posting on line trying to spin political cowardice as virtue.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 06:17PM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

So now you are comparing me to the Christian Right and suggesting I am a homophobe? What gets me about it is this, there is no way you would act like this in person...and you have no right talking about cowardice. You are some guy who offers noting but outrage and insults to the conversation. You are unwilling to engage with me on a conversation about the actual process because you know I am right and because you can't form a coherent argument without making accusations.

Furthermore, I am willing to bet that I have actually done more to further the cause of GLBT rights than you have even thought about doing. I wish I knew you in person so you could insult me to my face; not that you would have the courage or the class to say what you were thinking to somebody's face.

by JDF 2009-10-11 06:48PM | 0 recs

you actually harm your causes, at least as far as people here go because a.) you behave like such an ass that people don't take you seriously and b.) you hijack the conversation from people like desmoinedem who actually are able and willing to engage and make a coherent argument for why they feel the way they do.

Grow up and join the conversation... and if you can't figure out how to do it while behaving like an adult ask somebody to teach you because otherwise you are just a joke, a sideshow, and farcical entertainment for those of us who actually understand that serious problems need serious answers, and deserve a serious discussion.

by JDF 2009-10-11 06:53PM | 0 recs
Re: furthermore

A nice fellow over on a gay blog gave me this link when he saw the troubles I was having with some gay bigots who claimed there was no racism in the gay white community. He suggested this as a great way to respond to all such people such as yourself. The reason why is because every trick that you are trying to pull with me right now is on that list:


Your sole purpose for being here is summed up by the phrase "trying to derail an argument." Playing the victim card where you are the "harmed" party is exactly what I would expect from a right winger, and I don't care if you are Christian or not. The reality whatever the reason for why you are posting, it is offensive what you are doing. Just as Vecky above was offensive for playing the oppression Olympics in response to the gay civil rights debate. "oh you don't have it as bad as the blacks did"  now we get the "well I have been more harmed than you" argument. You are a cliche.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 07:30PM | 0 recs
Re: furthermore

Whats amazing to me is this: if what you say is true than why doesn't anybody else see how offensive I am?

Why doesn't anyone else see what an enemy of equality I am?

The answer is really simple. You are, at best, delusional. You have no idea what you are talking about. You have never once offered a coherent reason why my observations were wrong, you simply attacked me for having a different view than you do of the situation.

Previous to you joining the conversation there was a frank conversation going on about the process and what the best way to proceed in terms of actually solving these problems is. The best part is this: you are so blind and so ignorant to any view that differs from yours in the slightest that you ignore the fact that WE AGREE on the problesm that exist. Its a shame you are either too blind or too stupid to see that.

by JDF 2009-10-12 07:23AM | 0 recs
Re: furthermore

The only people on here who do not "see" who you are include the same group of people who defend President Obama no matter what the subject is. There are topics on which I do not talk such as foreign policy, and I watch them do the same to others on that front too. If you think the fact you can come at me as as herd is impressing with the same set of screen names doing the exact same thing in every diary, including entering my diaries on subjects like health care just to post nasty comments, is going to impress upon you are here to discuss the issue rather than derail the argument, you are wrong. The fact is there is a subset of you who repeatedly do this. Your behavior as one front page told me in an email speaks for itself.

by bruh3 2009-10-12 09:34AM | 0 recs
Re: furthermore

riiight, someone from the front page derided my behavior... okay. I'll tell you what, I will believe that when one of them sends me an email telling me how horrible I am.

I am not part of any herd. I operate on my own and I think for myself. You just can't help but lump all of those who don't feel exactly the same way you do into the same pack. I would say it looks like a bunker mentality, but the thing is, I can't tell who is in the bunker with you.

by JDF 2009-10-12 11:17AM | 0 recs
Re: furthermore

Seriously, I could go through your post and do a check list off the list that guy gave me. As he said, people like you are not if not predictable in how you respond to fights for equality.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 07:31PM | 0 recs
Re: furthermore

He doesn't harm any cause.  He's just a serial liar and insult artist.

Who can't see through that?  If he were to represent a group I was a part of I'd be mortified, but he doesn't.

by Jess81 2009-10-12 05:34AM | 0 recs
Re: furthermore

When was the last time you posted anything that is remotely related to a factual argument? I have multiple diaries on a variety of topics from health care to the economy to gay rights.

Some of which the front pagers liked enough to recommend. Ordinarily this does not matter to me, but if you are going to lie at least tell a lie that is no so easily refutable by me linking to my various diaries and their topics.

Nor is your behavior or that of your small group of 10 to 15 screen names  as you pretend limited to me. The same exact people can be counted on to attack the dissenters no matter what. There are issue of which I do not speak such as in the area of foreign policy, and I have seen the exact same behavior from you people. There are people who were ardent primary supporters of Pres Obama, and I have seen the exact same behavior. It is not about me. It is about you.

by bruh3 2009-10-12 09:48AM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

I support those who support my agenda.  The financial bailout has been a boon for the same people who created the disaster in the first place and we have gotten no industry reform to date.  He has backpedaled from his war position, as well.  "Our people" do not include the wealthy oligarchs who have benefited from the current administration.  Also, I would have thought that the horrendous games being played in Congress (this new found 60 vote requirement to get bills passed, failure to unite on major democratic policies, etc.) have demonstrated that we need to be much more careful in deciphering who "our people" are.  Just because someone has a D after their name, doesn't make them good.  Hell, half of them are republicans who jumped ship because their party became too conservative for them.  We don't need them infiltrating our party to yank it to the right.  I have been a lifelong Democrat, and I find it harder and harder to determine who are "our people."

by orestes 2009-10-11 02:46PM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

You correctly point out that there are different scales by which we should be judging politicians, and not simply are they a Democrat or a Republican. By focusing on one scale, and that scale alone, we are open to manipulation. This is true of many of the scales where if one looks at it alone they can be controlled. Here, with Obama we  see the impact of vesting too much into a charismatic politician. There are others such as ideological and plutocratic scales that affect people's judgment as well. The problem here is that if one relies too much on one or other without understanding their relationship to each then it creates a problem of equating one with the other. For instance, Democrat=left. Or Obama=Democrat. or that what Obama does equals pragmatism without asking "for whom is what he does pragmatic?" For him, or the American people?

by bruh3 2009-10-11 02:56PM | 0 recs
The American People

Your bitterness over the primary amuses me -- your intellectual laziness disturbs me.

You hate the guy, even though you "claim" to be a democrat. But even you acknowledge that Obama is being pragmatic. Your error is that you conflate pragmatism with policy; just because Obama has not had a chance to address something in the first few months in office does not mean he will not address it. So just say that he isn't moving fast enough for you, but I sense even if he were, you'd still be bitter over your loss.

by NoFortunateSon 2009-10-11 03:47PM | 0 recs
Re: do you deny

I agree with you... That's why I think its a midlevel priority.  I think HCR and the Economy are the biggest... I think Afganistan and Immigration reform are the next biggest due to political reasons.   Then after that falls DADT and DOMA somewhere with a host of other issues.  They could easily do more... but they are overly cautious and afraid that spending the capital on DADT will cost them something that is a bigger priority.

by 30000Fine 2009-10-11 01:26PM | 0 recs
Reply threads confuse me

... but I'd like to add a thought from a number of comments above: I'm not suggesting that I'm angry - or anyone should be angry, per se - about the fact that real change takes time; what I find frustrating, and others as well, I gather, is that we treat Obama's making these promises as the action of doing what's promised... and it isn't. And the problem on gay issues is really a subset of an issue that's dogging his Presidency overall, the sense that he gives great speeches... but the follow through and the moving from theory to practical action... seems to be difficult. And, I think, it's about time that the frustration of matching words to deeds be spoken of, and acknowledged.

But still. I'm not angry or depressed about Obama on gay issues... mostly because I think a realistic assessment, going in, would face that he was never great on gay issues, merely, at best, adequate. He doesn't support gay marriage. He played catch-up through the campaign season with other, more progressive voices when it came to gay rights. He's rarely shown an especially succesful fluency talking about gay issues unless pressed. Again... that's just what we have to deal with; I'm not angry about it, but I think it's better to be realistic about what Obama offers, good... and not so good. And respond accordingly.

What does make me angry are two things - one is a relentless press by supporters to credit his words as if they were deeds, and the second is a general tendency on the non-gay left to patronize the gay left with "you have to wait, be patient" and such that says "if you people push too hard, people will be put off."  That, politely, is bollocks, and just isn't how activism works. And gay people have been patient for a very long time... with very little result. We're not here to make everyone else comfortable. We're here because there's an urgency to the issues we face. Pressing for action, and doing so urgently... isn't about Obama, really. It's about doing what needs to be done to gat results for the gay community. There are those, like HRC and its supporters, that are comfortable with the long view and the incremental success. But the results we get are about that, and the urgent pressure to move past the comfort zone, and to press the hard cases. We need both. And gay people shouldn't be sorry for being angry. Or impatient. I don't expect miracles from Obama... but don't tell me his rhetoric is miraculous. It's nice... action would be nicer. And soon.

by nycweboy1 2009-10-11 06:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

"long on promises"? Pardon me, but JESUS CHRIST! It's been 9 months! And correct me if I'm wrong, isn't it the job of Congress to repeal such laws? Obama can get the fire up their butts, but it's up to Congress.

by Jen7 2009-10-11 08:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Actually it has been 2 years. he promised to address it quickly in the primaries and general. in fact, some such as Dan Choi were lead to believe it would be something taken up relatively quickly in the fall of 2008. Here's one such decorated officer here discussing what he heard then candidate pres Obama say:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V6lT0Pt71 UY

By the way- the appeals court glimmer of light?

"In the "don't ask, don't tell" case, the Supreme Court sided with the Obama administration, which had urged the justices not to hear the appeal against the policy, even though Obama is on record as opposing it. The court thus spared the administration from having to defend in court a policy that the president eventually wants to abolish pending a review by the Pentagon."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/con tent/article/2009/06/08/AR2009060801368. html

Pres Obama's present Press Secretary reaffirmed this around the election, and indeed, gay insiders were told that the issue would be addressed as late as 2010. It was only after he was elected that the language began to change to not providing any dates or time tables.

Which by way is the flaw with your argument- a time table is not addressed by saying he has been in office 9 months since by definition it is asking Pres Obama for a future time in which he plans to act.

On top of this, the gay organization that is in his hip pocket- HRC- the one's who sponsored the event Saturday night sent out a letter telling gays to be patient until 2017.

It is fine if you do not know this history, but you really should before posting as if you do. And I don't care if you want to lie to yourself, but realize some of us are following events rather than just posting on blogs.

by bruh3 2009-10-11 08:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends


You sound like the blog bully. If you don't like what you hear, you insult them. In the ten minutes it took me to read the comments, I'm not the only one that has pointed that out.

If this was a year later and nothing was done on LGBT issues, you'd have a point. But, again, it's only 9 months into his administration. He hasn't broken any promise, yet.

by Jen7 2009-10-11 09:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Riiiiight. You and the other Roboposters who come to cheerlead. hijack and attack without any facts whatsoever on your side are not at all bullies. And, the fact you are discussing an oppressed minority by defending indifference to that minority does not at all illustrate how much of a bully you really are. You people are so disgusting in your behavior.

by bruh3 2009-10-12 09:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

by the way- I note did not link to a single fact. One of the robots gave you a 2 for essentially whining that I linked you to facts that dispute your claims. But I am the on on here bullying. RIght, you people are nothing but a group of jerks who grouping together to bully others.

by bruh3 2009-10-12 09:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Honesty Amongst Friends

Dude, pragmatism not ideology.  Most, if not all, of the people here agree with your ideology.  But we are not discussing ideology.  We are discussing political manuevering.  

You've been on top of the healthcare debate daily.  Do you disbelieve the theory that introducing a repeal effort of DADT and DOMA to the public at this very moment would not offer the opportunity to those who oppose health care reform somethin to grab onto to scare the masses?  This is not 11th dimensional chess, this is simply keeping your powder dry until it can be used most effectively.  Does it suck for  the gay community?  Yes.  Am I the enemy because we have differences in  political maneuvering?

Is everyone here who disagrees with you secretly in collusion to persecute you?  No. Does your invective to random people with different views of pragmatism reek of delusion?  Yes.  Here's some advice, quit being so god damned repugnant and you might actually find out how much support your ideas have.  It's not your beliefs, its your style, and if you want people on your side, quit being a jerk.  

by KLRinLA 2009-10-12 10:24AM | 0 recs


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