Obama DOJ On The Wrong Side Of Don't Ask, Don't Tell

"You don't need to be straight to fight and die for your country. You just need to shoot straight."

-1964 Republican presidential nominee & U.S. Senator Barry Goldwater

In what world would Republicans have a better gay rights record than that of a so-called progressive, Democratic presidential administration?

We are living in that world, 2010 America, and a GOP-allied group paid more than lip-service to the nation's gay community as the Democratic administration of President Barack Obama hemmed and hawed their way around an important GLBT issue.

Six years after first taking legal action to overturn the discriminatory "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" military policy, the Log Cabin Republicans won a victory for gay Americans everywhere. United States District Court Judge Virginia A. Phillips ruled that "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" is unconstitutional.

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Will the Eddie Long Scandal Cost Barnes Support in Georgia's GLBT Community?

Prominent Georgia evangelist, Bishop Eddie Long (pictured at left), is on the defensive this week after three former parishioners filed a lawsuit alleging that Long "utilized his spiritual authority as Bishop [. . .] to coerce certain young male members into engaging in sexual acts and relationships for his own personal sexual gratification." [Matteucci, Megan and Boone, Christian (2010-9-22). Bishop Eddie Long | Third sexual coercion lawsuit filed. Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved on 2010-9-22.]

The allegations, which Long "adamantly denies," resulted in Democratic gubernatorial nominee Roy Barnes cancelling a fundraiser where Long was to serve as a co-host.

Before these claims of sexual misconduct came to light, though, Barnes touted Eddie Long's endorsement of his candidacy to the press [Metro Atlanta faith leaders back Roy Barnes for governor. Chattanooga Times Free Press. Retrieved on 2010-9-22.].

"Roy is the only candidate in this race who has consistently been a friend to our community," Long said in a press release announcing his endorsement of Barnes. "He is the only one I trust to guide our state in a better direction."

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Obama: Congress's Failure To Pass Hate Crimes Legislation, "Truly Unacceptable"

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It is a few days old (Thursday) but I just ran across this statement by Barack Obama on the spineless Democratic leaderships decision to strip the Matthew Shepard Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act. This is a very important issue to me because I have gay uncles on both sides of the family. My godfathers are gay and yet a radical minority has used hatred and bigotry to size on people's fears and prejudices and gain political power to enforce there radical, hateful agenda. And those bigots have made it into the "mainstream" of political dialog and blocked one of the most seemingly uncontroversial and simple laws with threats of retaliation.

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Clinton, Obama Squirm Uncomfortably When Asked About Homosexuality

On Tuesday, after the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs called homosexuality "immoral,"Hotline on Call stated the obvious:
The Next Question For Presidential Candidates

Do you believe, per Gen. Pace, that homosexuality is immoral?
It wasn't hard to see this question coming, and the answer isn't hard either: "no." But let's look at how various Democrats answered the question yesterday. From Americablog:
Rather than giving the clear cut answer that Senator John Warner (R-VA) gave, "I respectfully, but strongly, disagree with the chairman's view that homosexuality is immoral," or that John Edwards gave, "I don't share that view," Hillary and Obama squirmed.

Hillary: "Well, I'm going to leave that to others to conclude."

Obama: Newsday caught Obama as he was leaving the firefighters convention and asked him three times if he thought homosexuality is immoral.

Answer 1: "I think traditionally the Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman has restricted his public comments to military matters. That's probably a good tradition to follow."

Answer 2: "I think the question here is whether somebody is willing to sacrifice for their country, should they be able to if they're doing all the things that should be done."

Answer 3: Signed autograph, posed for snapshot, jumped athletically into town car.

What? Hey Senator Obama, do you think Jews are immoral? Jesus Christ.
As John points out later in the same post, Clinton and Obama did issue statements later in the day stating that they disagreed with General Pace. It took a while, but they did eventually get it right. However, I am still left with questions from the incident. It was a question with an easy answer that everyone knew was coming. Does screwing up the first response represent poor campaign management? Does it represent general recalcitrance when it comes to supporting gay rights, on either a personal or political level? Does it represent yet more Democratic fear to appear to be disagreeing with anyone in uniform in any way, shape or form?

This was a really, really easy question to answer. Screwing this one up at first has to make you wonder, at least a little bit, about both Clinton and Obama's political instincts. Say what you want about John Edwards, but he certainly seems to say the right thing, the first time, without waiting for others to take the lead. People will write that I am an Edwards supporter, and thus biased, but quite frankly it is stuff like this that makes me an Edwards supporter. Get it right the first time. Take the lead. Don't be so damn cautious.

Update: Clinton has issued another statement saying she does not think homosexuality is immoral:
Senator of Hillary Rodham Clinton on the Comments Made By General Peter Pace

"I have heard from many of my friends in the gay community that my response yesterday to a question about homosexuality being immoral sounded evasive. My intention was to focus the conversation on the failed don't ask don't tell policy. I should have echoed my colleague Senator John Warner's statement forcefully stating that homosexuality is not immoral because that is what I believe."
I'm glad that she made this statement. However, as a commenter noted, I am getting a lot of Kerry-Dukakis vibes from this incident. Even here, she has to hide behind John Warner. Why is something so simple made into something so hard, so tortured? Not very encouraging.

Will the Eddie Long Scandal Cost Barnes Support in Georgia's GLBT Community?

Prominent Georgia evangelist, Bishop Eddie Long (pictured at left), is on the defensive this week after three former parishioners filed a lawsuit alleging that Long "utilized his spiritual authority as Bishop [. . .] to coerce certain young male members into engaging in sexual acts and relationships for his own personal sexual gratification." [Matteucci, Megan and Boone, Christian (2010-9-22). Bishop Eddie Long | Third sexual coercion lawsuit filed. Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved on 2010-9-22.]

The allegations, which Long "adamantly denies," resulted in Democratic gubernatorial nominee Roy Barnes cancelling a fundraiser where Long was to serve as a co-host.

Before these claims of sexual misconduct came to light, though, Barnes touted Eddie Long's endorsement of his candidacy to the press [Metro Atlanta faith leaders back Roy Barnes for governor. Chattanooga Times Free Press. Retrieved on 2010-9-22.].

"Roy is the only candidate in this race who has consistently been a friend to our community," Long said in a press release announcing his endorsement of Barnes. "He is the only one I trust to guide our state in a better direction."

There's more...

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