From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Prop 8

As someone who is getting pretty tired of my race and faith  being blamed for Prop 8 passing, I thought the gay activists on this board would like to hear from one of thier own. I ran across this article written by a black lesbian. She sums up my thoughts better than I could. es/news/the_state_of_black_america_news/ 2295

Dear California, Here's Where They Went Wrong With Proposition 8
Date: Monday, November 10, 2008, 1:17 pm
By: Jasmyne A. Cannick, Special to

I am a perfect example of why the fight against Proposition 8, which amends the state Constitution to ban same-sex marriage, failed to win black support.

I am black. I am a political activist who cares deeply about social justice issues. I am a lesbian. This year, I canvassed the streets of South Los Angeles and Compton, knocking on doors, talking politics to passers-by and working as I never had before to ensure a large voter turnout among African-Americans. But even I wasn't inspired to encourage black people to vote against the proposition.

Why? Because I don't see why the right to marry should be a priority for me or other black people. Gay marriage? Please. At a time when blacks are still more likely than whites to be pulled over for no reason, more likely to be unemployed than whites, more likely to live at or below the poverty line, I was too busy trying to get black people registered to vote, period; I wasn't about to focus my attention on what couldn't help but feel like a secondary issue.

The first problem with Proposition 8 was the issue of marriage itself. The white gay community never successfully communicated to blacks why it should matter to us above everything else - not just to me as a lesbian but to blacks generally. The way I see it, the white gay community is banging its head against the glass ceiling of a room called equality, believing that a breakthrough on marriage will bestow on it parity with heterosexuals. But the right to marry does nothing to address the problems faced by both black gays and black straights. Does someone who is homeless or suffering from HIV but has no healthcare, or newly out of prison and unemployed, really benefit from the right to marry someone of the same sex?

Maybe white gays could afford to be singularly focused, raising millions of dollars to fight for the luxury of same-sex marriage. But blacks were walking the streets of the projects and reaching out to small businesses, gang members, convicted felons and the spectrum of an entire community to ensure that we all were able to vote.

Second is the issue of civil rights. White gays often wonder aloud why blacks, of all people, won't support their civil rights. There is a real misunderstanding by the white gay community about the term. Proponents of gay marriage fling it around as if it is a one-size-fits-all catchphrase for issues of fairness.

But the black civil rights movement was essentially born out of and driven by the black church; social justice and religion are inextricably intertwined in the black community. To many blacks, civil rights are grounded in Christianity - not something separate and apart from religion but synonymous with it. To the extent that the issue of gay marriage seemed to be pitted against the church, it was going to be a losing battle in my community.

At the same time that gays adopted the language of the civil rights movement, they never put into practice its core principles or demonstrated an understanding the people and history behind it. This how you have a gay couple in West Hollywood use a noose as part of a political effigy on the eve of one of the most important elections for both blacks and gays in California. I can tell you that didn't go over too well with the black community.

Then there was the poorly conceived campaign strategy. Opponents of Proposition 8 relied on an outdated civil rights model, engaging the NAACP to help win black support on the issue of gay marriage. This happened despite the warnings of black lesbians and gays that it wouldn't work. While the NAACP definitely should have been included in the strategy, it shouldn't have been the only group. Putting nearly a quarter of a million dollars into an outdated civil rights model that has very little influence on the black vote - at least when it comes to gay issues - will never work.

Likewise, holding the occasional town-hall meeting in Leimert Park - the one part of the black community where they now feel safe, thanks to gentrification - to tell black people how to vote on something gay isn't effective outreach either.

In the past, it's been common practice for the gay community to hire black faces, temporarily, to convince blacks to support gay marriage. The only problem is that the surrogates hired oftentimes are as far removed from the black community as the white gay community is.

Worse, gay activists have a history of financially supporting black political candidates, even though many of those same candidates will not openly support issues like Prop. 8. From congressional members to state lawmakers, most black politicians were M.I.A. on Prop. 8.

There's nothing a white gay person can tell me when it comes to how I, as a black lesbian, should talk to my community about this issue. If and when I choose to, I know how to say what needs to be said. Many black gays just haven't been convinced that this movement for marriage is about anything more than the white gays who fund it - and who, we often find, are just as racist and clueless when it comes to blacks as they claim blacks are homophobic.

Some people seem to think that homophobia trumps racism and that winning the battle for gay marriage will symbolically bring about equality for everyone. That may seem true to white gays, but as a black lesbian, let me tell you: There are still too many inequalities that exist as it relates to my race for that to ever be the case. Ever heard of "driving while black?" Ever looked at the difference between the dropout rates for blacks and for whites? Or test scores? Or wages? Or rates of incarceration?

And in the end, black voters in California voted against gay marriage by more than two to one.

Maybe next time around - because we all know this isn't over - the gay community can demonstrate the capacity and willingness to change that America demonstrated when it went to the polls on Nov. 4. Black gays are depending on their white counterparts to finally "get it."

Until then, don't expect to make any inroads any time soon in the black community on this issue - including with this black lesbian.

Tags: African-Americans, gay, Prop 8 (all tags)




I completely understand the argument "why should they care or make it a top priority," and I think this is a thoughtful post and I am tired of all the blaming game as well.

However, there is difference between asking people to fight for something (in which case, yes, sure, why should marriage take precedence over a decent wage or important economic issues) and asking them to not take away what already exists (in which case I'm not sure how the "why is this a priority" argument applies).

by LeftistAddiction 2008-11-10 09:08AM | 0 recs
It applies bigtime

you need to be part of a coalition. Be their friend, be active in the community.

Make their problems your problems.

Lend a helping hand.

Then they'll get your back.

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 10:11AM | 0 recs

Shame on you. Make "their" problems "our" problems, and then "they'll get your back"? Who the fuck do you think you are? Its not about getting our back, its about showing that the black community actually learned something from all of the inhumanity that was directed against it, namely, that "INJUSTICE ANYWHERE IS A THREAT TO JUSTICE EVERYWHERE."

I think MLK would be ASHAMED to hear his community say to another minority, "we'll vote against your rights unless you scratch our back"..

White liberals marched with black liberals in the 60s, and they elected a black president in 2008. In the same year, black people actively voted down rights for another minority.

I am absolutely astounded to see such garbage on the Rec list. Shame on EVERY SINGLE PERSON that recommended this garbage.

by alipi 2008-11-10 05:19PM | 0 recs

I rec'd this simply because it was something that I thought folks should see for themselves.

There appear to be three factions here: the first group that blames African Americans for the passage of prop 8 (I am not among those folks), the second group that believes there is no reality to the fact that African Americans voted overwhelmingly in favor for prop 8, and that there is no bigotry or prejudice within the African American community towards homosexuals,  and the third group, (of which I am one of the folks) who believe that there needs to be an open, honest discussion about the problem.  We'll never solve it if we don't talk or communicate.

I thought this important because it very deftly proves a portion of the second groups thinking to be false.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 07:15PM | 0 recs
thanks for playing!

seriously, this provides a forum, along with some liberal black blogs, to understand where everyone is coming from.

and it is letting issues and implied slights be raised -- not sure if it is even productive to do anything about it, but... at least y'all will know about them!

by RisingTide 2008-11-11 04:05AM | 0 recs
I disagree with so much of what you wrote.

But I agree with your right to write it.  I will only say it must be difficult for you, each leg in different ponds.

by ChitownDenny 2008-11-10 09:19AM | 0 recs
You're right. I don't get it.

I'm completely embarrassed by many of the racist points of view in the progressive community on this issue (some even appearing on this site). And I'll readily admit there are things about racism and its effects that I don't "get."

But what I don't "get" above all else is the thought that we can excuse people for holding certain views because the issue "isn't a priority" for them or other nonsense.

It's clear to me that the white evangelicals that voted against us did so out of a combination of hatred, fear, and bigotry. It's clear to me that the black evangelicals that voted against us did so for the same reasons.

Should we, as progressives, work harder to further address the inequalities in this country which, because of racism, disproportionately effect blacks? Absolutely. Should we refrain from condemning black people in general because 70% of them voted for Prop 8? Absolutely.

But should we shrug our shoulders at the individuals of any race who voted against us and excuse their actions as anything but hatred, fear, and bigotry? Absolutely not.

by fsm 2008-11-10 09:33AM | 0 recs
don't throw the first stone

Field Negro, skeptical brotha are both good progressive BLACK democrats.
But read their blogs, see why your outreach failed. See what the feelings of gay black men are.


end of subject.

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 10:12AM | 0 recs
Re: You're right. I don't get it.

Let me get this right. So, if somebody, ANYBODY voted for Prop 8, then they did so out of "hatred, fear, and bigotry" ?

And you think this attitude is going to get you more votes in places outside of CA? Or less?

You do know that the author of this piece is a black lesbian, right?

by xodus1914 2008-11-10 10:31AM | 0 recs
Re: You're right. I don't get it.

Can you tell me a reason to vote for Prop 8 that didn't stem from fear, hate, or bigotry?

It's actually an honest question -- I've been asking every pro-Prop 8 person on this site to explain to me a policy-based reason why people would vote for Prop 8. None has so far...

If there are policy-based reasons for voting for Prop 8, I'd be more than happy to discuss them. In the absence of such, I'll stick by my conclusion.

by fsm 2008-11-10 10:41AM | 0 recs
A sincere religious belief

that God only wants a man and a woman to marry perhaps? One can hold that view and not fear or hate gays.

by LiberalDebunker 2008-11-10 11:06AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

One can indeed hold that view, but using it as a reason to vote for Prop 8 is not a policy decision: it is a religious decision.

My husband and I were married in our church; we are still married in the eyes of God, our congregation, and our family. Evangelicals of whatever race may reject that belief as is their right -- but it doesn't make my belief in those facts any less valid.

More important -- my religious beliefs are not subject to a vote any more than theirs are.

Hence, a vote for Prop 8 on religious grounds stems from religious bigotry -- a belief that one group can use their religion to force others to live a certain way, or to deny the religious beliefs of others. It does not stem from a policy decision as to what is best for the individuals involved, nor what is best for the country at large.

by fsm 2008-11-10 11:13AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

Yes, it's certainly a religious decision but lots of people make decisions based on their religious beliefs.

I don't see it as religious bigotry as it's not saying one religion is better than another or better than no religion at all.

I'm certainly not defending it as I don't believe anyone should be married by the state. The state should allow two consenting adults to enter into a contract with each other - that's a civil proceeding  - and churches can choose whether or not they hold religious ceremonies for people and provide them with decrees of "marriage".

by LiberalDebunker 2008-11-10 11:20AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

Ya know?

fsm wants 'a policy-based reason'. Umm, does a person's religion count as policy? I think so.

by xodus1914 2008-11-10 11:17AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

Can you explain to me how voting one's religious beliefs is a valid public-policy? Especially if their religious beliefs contradict mine? Why do we choose their's to base policy on?

I suspect that we would both agree that when white people used the Bible to justify slavery, that wasn't a justifiable religiously-held belief: it was simply bigotry. Why is this any different?

by fsm 2008-11-10 11:42AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

Picking and choosing Biblical passages to suit your belief that a segment of the population cannot have the full rights you enjoy is bigotry, period.  

Reflect on that as you eat your ham sandwich and wear cloth of two different materials.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 11:17AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

I'm sure some religious people are also homophobic bigots but that doesn't mean all of them are. Some might support civil unions between two consenting adults while not supporting marriage other than between a man and a woman as their God desires. That wouldn't seem to fit cleanly into the category of bigotry because it can be a belief even if they think that it's unfair and even if they view everyone is equal.

That's why I don't like the institution of marriage. It's a religious institution in the first place.  

by LiberalDebunker 2008-11-10 11:23AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

I agree that all religious people aren't bigots, but I also believe that otherwise good people can do bigoted things, and a Yes on 8 is bigotry.

I also agree that the solution is obvious: government does civil unions, churches proclaim marriages.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 11:28AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

Ok. So if there was a proposition to replace Bibles with Korans in christian churches and people voted it down would that be bigotry? I think we can both agree that it wouldn't be. I'm not a religious person but understand that religious people want to preserve their religious institutions, of which marriage is one. I don't agree with it but I understand it.

I'm all for the state getting out of the marriage business.

by LiberalDebunker 2008-11-10 11:32AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

Totally different scenarios. One is telling people what they must do in their church, whereas another is telling people throughout the state what they can and cannot do outside of the church.  

That's why it got struck down, and that is why they had to as far as to try to amend the constitution.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 11:42AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief
Apples and oranges, man. Show me where in the bible the ham sandwich and clothes mismatch is a sin. Homosexuality is pronounced as a sin in both the Old and New Testaments. Stop lumping everybody who voted for 8 in the same category and for once try to appreciate the scope of the delimma that people of faith have when it comes to condoning homosexuality. And before you mention it, Jesus never condoned slavery, so that argument is moot. *Everything that man has done in the name of Christianity is necessarily Christian.*
by xodus1914 2008-11-10 06:43PM | 0 recs
Here's them apples...

"...and the swine, though it divides the hoof, having cloven hooves, yet does not chew the cud, is unclean to you." (Leviticus 11:7)"

I guess when you pick and choose your passages to suit your prejudices, it's easy to skip the parts you don't like.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 10:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Here's them apples...
Read again. Jesus said that all things on the earth was good. Christians follow Jesus. You rather spend time and energy trying to insult religion rather than help people understand your dilemma. Good luck on getting anybody to vote no on 8 in the Bible Belt.
by xodus1914 2008-11-11 03:56AM | 0 recs
Please show me ...

Jesus' words on homosexuality.

by emsprater 2008-11-11 07:05AM | 0 recs
Re: Here's them apples...

I'm not insulting religion.  I understand that there are many interpretations. Some are used to reinforce prejudices; some emphasize love and brotherhood.  It's clear you adhere to the former.

I also understand that regardless of your personal interpretation, it is unnecessary to foist it upon others and take away their rights.  And as annoyed as I am with you, I would never do that to you.  I guess I believe in that "Do Unto Others" part.  

by mikeinsf 2008-11-11 08:50AM | 0 recs
snerf! I'm a Jew

they're talking about a sepcific period in history, when homosexual acts were associated with idolatry. The rule was against idolatry, not homosexuality.

You Iz Fail.

by RisingTide 2008-11-11 05:50AM | 0 recs
Re: A sincere religious belief

A sincere religious belief influencing our public policy on something harmless, like boys marrying boys, is more appropriate for 2008 BC, not now.

by IssaquahIndie 2008-11-10 01:06PM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

Are you Donna Brazile in hiding.  This sounds like something Donna Brazile or Leah Daughtry could have written verbatim.

by Iceblinkjm 2008-11-10 09:33AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

This is off topic of the diary, but I mentioned this to you yesterday and you angrily blew me off: the same poll that people furious at the black community also shows that Clinton primary voters were more likely to support Prop 8 than Obama voters.

It makes sense when you think about it: age was a close second to religiousity in terms of what made people likely to support or oppose it.

by Jess81 2008-11-10 10:05AM | 0 recs
I get the impression...

...that you're a black lesbian.  Just a hunch. :P

But seriously, it just goes to show that Democrats do, in fact, have a pretty big tent, and we're not immune to various sorts of prejudice.  

We still have work to do, and I'm perfectly happy with baby steps, if we're aiming in the right direction.

by Dracomicron 2008-11-10 09:37AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

The white gay community never successfully communicated to blacks why it should matter to us above everything else - not just to me as a lesbian but to blacks generally.

I'm confused. It's one thing to say "this isn't the most important thing, so I'm not going to work for it". It's quite another to say "this isn't the most important thing, so I'm actively going to vote against it."

The basic thesis of this argument is that black people have it bad, so they want to make some white people have it bad. I really don't think that's even remotely accurate.

by TCQuad 2008-11-10 09:39AM | 0 recs
Priviledged white folks got enough time to

campaign about marriage -- twenty people dead around here and they ain't doing nothin'.

That's about what I heard. About the gay folks not being part of a coalition, not helping brothers out.

Maybe try working on building some friendships. Y'all ain't so scary if you ain't on the down low.

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 10:14AM | 0 recs
Coalitions of choice vs. necessity

The big question is: "Are you a Democrat because you want to help the causes of other Democrats, or are you a Democrat because you've got nowhere else to go?"

Big tent politics is always tricky because you get a loose coalition that might not be fully up on what the subgroups are up to.  The Republicans found out to their detriment when they tacked together their Evangelical/Big Business/Neocon trifecta under the understanding that the Evangelicals would do all the electoral gruntwork and get nothing but promises in return while the Big Business and Neocons went about their agendas without really giving a shit about the religious folks.  When the evangelicals realized that they were doing the heavy lifting and abortion was still just as legal as it ever was, they stopped turning out in force for the Republicans.

We have to make sure that we don't follow that example.  We have to actually care about minority issues... not just minority issues, but intra-minority issues.

by Dracomicron 2008-11-10 10:39AM | 0 recs
with you on that. n/t

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 11:07AM | 0 recs
I would like to ...

do some follow up, not here in this diary, because this isn't the place for it, on one of your statements.

"campaign about marriage -- twenty people dead around here and they ain't doing nothin'."

I worked EMS in a large city with a majority (64% I believe) African American population, and it also held the #2 per capita homicide rate in the nation for many of those years.  I worked many shootings, stabbings and assaults, some where people died, some where we were able to ensure survival at least to the ER, some beyond that.

Never once did I see force come from outside the community to perpetrate that violence.  Each and every time a perpetrator was found, they were from the same ethnic group.  Drugs, guns, prostitution, domestic violence.  I say none of this to stereotype any community, but to call your statement above into question: who exactly is 'they'  who folks are saying 'ain't doing nothin'?  Who exactly can stop black on black crime?

Yesterday's diary had admonitions about how there was a lack of strong male influences in the black community, and that is a reason that 'gay marriage' is seen as a threat.  Who can best achieve change if that is in fact a problem?

Where does ensuring that homosexuals have no right to equality in America factor into 'the fix' for any of these problems?

by emsprater 2008-11-10 10:54AM | 0 recs
thank you for your service!

I'm saying that the gay folks aren't seen as a force for good within the black community. The riots in crown heights helped make sure that the Jews there ARE seen as a good force within the black community.

maybe this will be a wakeup call. dunno.

I'm not saying that these votes came to try and protect something -- just that people didn't always feel motivated to help out teh gayz.

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 11:10AM | 0 recs
You fail to acknowledge

that Prop 8 only required a vote.  Are you saying that, in your view, the black community feels that "I'm not going to pull the lever for you because I don't see you in my community fixes the problems there"?  That's an awfully self-centered attitude to have when it comes to others' human rights.  I can understand (to an extent) having the view that I'm not going to get actively involved in fighting against Prop 8 because I don't see white gay people helping out in my community, but to vote against equality for that reason is morally wrong, in my book.  Also, I think you tend to equate the gay community with a privileged, white gay male community.  That, too, is not very progressive.

by orestes 2008-11-10 11:45AM | 0 recs
then you're misreading what I'm saying

I'm trying to characterize the views that I've heard, on the afrosphere. Not saying that I believe them.

For many blacks, it was a choice between religion and civil rights. Some believed false things, and might have been more likely to vote against prop8 with more education.

if you are used to being persecuted, and you don't view someone else as an ally, is it any wonder that you won't support their civil rights?

You can Say that it is morally wrong -- but does that win you any votes?

I come here to tell you what I got, from where I read. You listen or you don't, but I'd remember that judging folks isn't likely to get you more votes.

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 11:52AM | 0 recs
The blog entry that

is the focus of this diary does make that point.  I thought you agreed with her position.  I did not mean to inaccurately ascrbe views to you.  Sorry for that.  That does not alter my point, however.  

I do not accept the view that persecuted people need to feel that the other is an ally to support their civil rights.  I am a white gay man who has always been supportive of the AA movement for equality.  I didn't do that because AAs proved to me they are my ally (I am sure you are familiar with the overt homophobia in the black community), but because it is the right thing to do.  I believe that all people deserve fair and equal treatment in every society.  Granted, not everyone adopts this view, but I don't give them a pass even if they are persecuted.

I have to admit I'm a bit bothered by the notion that gays and lesbians are rsponsible for AAs voting against Prop 8 because they did not reach out to win over the AA community.  Granted, we should all move in each others' communities and speak to each other and mingle, etc., but if a black lesbian takes the view in this diary, it does not bode well for much success.  During the civil rights battle, AAs didn't reach out to the bigots who opposed them.  They recognized their bogotry and fought it.  Is it not qually acceptable for the gay community to do the same?
I do not advocate this approach, but I do understand it.  Finally, I just want to state that I do not blame AA Californians for the pasage of 8, but the vote percentages are disheartening to me.

by orestes 2008-11-10 04:43PM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

Wrong. I wrote in my diary yesterday, that putting that initiative on the ballot put every voter in a tough spot.
You also seem to think it was about whites, it wasn't.
Most Blacks don't think of homosexuality as a racial thing at all, especially when intolerance of homosexuality has never been high in Black community to start off with.
You are proving the author's point. White gays will never get the Black vote until they try to understand why the Black community barely tolerates Black gays.

It's called RELIGION. I know a lot of gays and liberals seem to think it's some archaic outdated concept, but most Americans still live by some variation of it.

Until you folks get that, you wont get it.

by xodus1914 2008-11-10 10:50AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

NO!  It's called homophobia! 6/4750#commenttop

by ChitownDenny 2008-11-10 10:54AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

When you are ready to take your head out of the sand, let me know.

by xodus1914 2008-11-10 11:21AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

xodus, I just think citing religion for intolerance is the same logic that has been used to subjugate minorities since the beginning of time.  

by ChitownDenny 2008-11-10 11:42AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

xodus is spinning and spinning fast.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 10:20PM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr
ChitownDenny, It's not the same, because European-type slavery was clearly not condoned by Jesus. The Eurpean justification was a fabrication, built on the ignorance of Africans who could not read English. Just, tbecause people did things in the name of Christianity, doesn't mean it was Christian. As i have said before, the Black Christian's delimma is rooted in verses in both Testaments that clearly call homosexuality a sin. If something is to change, it starts here, not insulting people's religion. Thank you for listening.
by xodus1914 2008-11-11 04:11AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

You know what?  Those verses you cite were never written in English to begin with.  They were written in Aramaic by humans with bias, translated by humans with bias and continually re translated by humans with bias.  Now I know that idea will offend you, but I am sorry, it is very true, and I can acknowledge this history of the Bible as a Christian.

You would do well to actually study those 3 verses out of over a billion that modern day fundamentalists and evangelicals  use to make homosexuality their number 2 bogeyman (abortion being their number 1).  They do not mean what you think, and never once applied to what you think.

But I fear your heart is closed, and you will not find the Truth, for you do not seek it,  you instead, like most of humanity, try to make the Truth fit your own bias.

by emsprater 2008-11-11 05:49AM | 0 recs
Is it really ....


if it is, then why are there so few heterosexual marriages within that very 'religious' community?

Why is single parenthood so acceptable in this 'religious community', but not in others?

It clearly may have a 'religious' component, but it isn't about adherence to fundamentalist beliefs, as it is for the Mormons.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 10:58AM | 0 recs
I'm sorry

did you mean to say intolerance of homosexuality has never been high in the black community?  But then you say the black community barely tolerates black gays.  I think the latter statement is more true.  In my experience, there is some acceptance in the black community as long as you act like a clown or accept your place as lesser.  

by orestes 2008-11-10 11:00AM | 0 recs
Re: I'm sorry

I meant to say 'tolerance'

by xodus1914 2008-11-10 11:20AM | 0 recs

"Why? Because I don't see why the right to marry should be a priority for me or other black people."

"Why? Because I don't see why the right to [drive without being pulled over based on race] should be a priority for me or other [white] people."

"Why? Because I don't see why [diversity in higher education] should be a priority for me or other [white] people."

"Why? Because I don't see why [underfunded urban schools] should be a priority for me or other [white] people."

Good luck with that.

by JJE 2008-11-10 09:41AM | 0 recs
Well isn't this special!

All snark and hostility aside, one statement sticks in my mind ....

"fight for the luxury of same-sex marriage"

I suppose I just may have to remember that the next time I am called upon to fight for the 'luxury' of any other group's rights.  How did 'white folks' in my neck of the woods ever stand up with African Americans against George Wallace?  Why didn't we take the same risk this 'black lesbian' is willing to take now?  How were we so 'wrong' only to be 'set straight' by someone whose current rights we helped farther along the road to equality?

Apparently, it's now every faction for them self.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 09:43AM | 0 recs
emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

but is it any wonder that some folks think it is?

What can we, as individuals, do about it?

Lend a helping hand.

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 10:15AM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

I'd like to believe you.

I'm not one of the folks who placed 'blame' on any one group for the passage of prop 8 in CA and amendment 2 in FL. I have stated we should be able to have an open and honest discussion about how race affected voters decisions so we could know how to move forward. Then we get diaries like the one yesterday from a black man who insists that it was the right vote because gay marriage is against his religion, and then this one where a black lesbian says that gay marriage is a 'luxury' she decided not to vote to protect.  I still do not blame any 'race', but it is now easier to wash my hair on election day if there is something in need of my vote to secure rights for other folks (and I'm bald, BTW).

My hands are tired.  I'm sure you remember the story of Henney Penney, and why she never baked bread again.  Well, my oven is now officially broken, 'cept for me and my own.

Done.  Over.  Folks who wish to say I am wrong for that decision have to decide if the letter writer is also wrong, and if folks she was defending were also wrong.  I doubt there's that much honesty circling the issue here anymore.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 10:34AM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!
As the Black man that you are referring to, I beleive you missed my point. I have not had one gay person try to be sympathetic to the struggle that a person of faith faces when s/he is asked to support something that thier religion clearly says is wrong.
Even though I beleive abortion is murder to some degree, (according to my faith)   I will never support overturning Roe v. Wade because we should never criminalize women who seek abortions or the doctors who perform them. I beleive that we should spend money providing options so women don't want to have abortions.
THe simply fact is, that most Blacks don't look at gay marraige as civil rights issue, but as a religious one. Until gay activists address the Black religious perspective, they will never get thier support.
by xodus1914 2008-11-10 11:00AM | 0 recs
No, I didn't miss ....

your point.   I fully 'got' your point, that being that your religious beliefs trumped my civil liberties.

I understand that belief structure.  You see, I grew up in a culture, no, a 'faith', where every Sunday I heard from the pulpit admonitions utilizing some verses, passages and scriptures from the Bible that were 'proof' that God wanted separation of the races.  Proof that whites and blacks shouldn't intermarry, that whites were 'God's people', that we, not you, were 'created in His image'.

I began to question the veracity of those claims about the time I reached my teenage years.  Bible study turned the bigotry of the leaders from a different generation within the church upon it's head, and I became aware of the Truth: that we, you, and I , are BOTH created in His image, that ALL of Humanity are 'God's people', and that (wonder of wonders) all sin is equal.  Homosexuality is no 'greater' sin than adultery or fornication or overeating on Sunday.

Jesus' admonition to us was and IS to 'love one another as you love yourself'.

There IS sympathy for your struggle, what does not exist is tolerance for your 'struggle' to include forcing your belief system as the Law over the civil rights of others.  No one is asking you to marry person of the same sex, they are asking you to step out of the way of those who choose to.  It's not your call to dictate their relationship or their civil rights, no more than it is their call to dictate what food you are able to consume or which neighborhood you are able to reside in or which schools your children are unable to attend because of their color.

I was once  married, have adult children, and now have my first grandchild, a grandson.  He has much to learn in this world, he's under 2, but I hope to be able to teach him to not see things as you do, or as I used to, but in a different, far clearer unprejudiced light.  He has a hard and difficult time ahead of him, I know, because he has some common genetic factors in common with a man who also had a difficult road, but overcame, and now is our President Elect.  My grandson is half African American, half Caucasian. In an odd way, that places 'us', you and I, in a larger respect in the same 'boat': faith, interests for our children and our faith, and for dealing with bigotry and hatred.

It's difficult for me to understand why any one of us could repeatedly have our foot run over by a dump truck and sit idly by the side of the road while it claims another foot because we don't like the color of the skin attached to the foot or the sexual orientation of the skin attached to the foot.  A broken foot run over by a dump truck breaks the same, no matter if it's  black, white, asian, straight, gay, young, old, or even republican.  

Maybe I should pay attention to your diary from yesterday, and the letter today from the black lesbian, and learn from your examples, and understand better why sitting idly by watching the dump truck claim another foot is the right thing to do.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 11:40AM | 0 recs
four star post!

me like!

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 11:54AM | 0 recs
Thank you thank you

Exactly.  Hallelujah (if you will...)!!!

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 10:23PM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

It really is pretty audacious to ask the one being attacked to understand the personal struggle of the attacker.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-11 09:55AM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

It's not if the attacked wants to get the attacker to stop attacking them. "Know thy enemy'

Or the gays can continue to wonder why they lost in the most liberal state in the union.

by xodus1914 2008-11-12 10:30AM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

There is a huge problem when open wonderment that folks with a history of similar struggles against opresssion of Civl Rights would actually vote to take Civil rights away from a group, any group, because they don't share their beliefs becomes such a thorn in the side of one that they would state they would 'empty their 401K' to ensure that those rights never be regained.

Frankly, I've posed some very salient points here showing you how religion and faith, no matter whether right or wrong in it's concept, should not be a basis for denial for any human's Civil Rights, and you have consistently ignored those points in order to sling mud at folks and wail about how the black community needs more from gays before they will support us.

Sorry, I don't see it like that.  I never once asked the black community for one thing before I would support their calls for equality.  In large part, I don't think any one who ever supported any groups struggle for equality ever required conditions upfront before that support would be given.  

Gays know why they lost, bigotry, not from any one group, but from several disparate groups that decided to band together because their hate for homosexuals was greater than their dislike for each other.  Using your faith or your religion as an excuse for that hate is abominable.

by emsprater 2008-11-12 04:19PM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

hey emsprater, sorry to barge in on your conversation here, but, I'd be intersted in your take on my diary.  It's going to fall to the bottom of the list soon, and it might be interesting to you (then again, it might not).

by slynch 2008-11-12 04:40PM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

I did get the opportunity to casually peruse your diary last night while on a short bit of downtime between calls at work.  I didn't have time to get into it in as much depth as something that detailed requires.  Working again today, never know how much time I will have, but I will try to look more closely at it.

You obviously put a lot of work into it, so I don't want to make casual remarks without really digesting the content.

by emsprater 2008-11-13 04:12AM | 0 recs
Re: emsprater, you know it ain't like that!

Emsprater: I like you.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-13 09:40AM | 0 recs
Re: huh?

So let me know if I'm getting this wrong. But you justify taking away the marriage rights of gays in California because black people are still the victims of racism?

That I definitely do not get. I don't see why the fact that blacks continue to suffer from racist structures, justifies their assiting in the denial of rights of the gay community.

Just as white gays should work to ensure the rights of African Americans, the same is true of progressive African Americans with regard to gay rights.

by theshornwonder 2008-11-10 09:44AM | 0 recs
check out field negro, or skeptical brotha

lotta opinions there, but there's some explantion of what people are feeling. you gotta know what people are feeling before you try to change it, huh?

Work On Change, not casting blame.

by RisingTide 2008-11-10 10:16AM | 0 recs
Re: there is no other side.

the bottom line black america needs to some soul-searching.  we all know it is tragic that community voted in favor of discrimination and inequality.

there is no other side.  hate is hate.  

by latina 2008-11-10 09:50AM | 0 recs
and the gay community needs to do some
soulsearching too. why do black gay people form their own communities, or feel shut out of gay organizations???
keep it real.
by RisingTide 2008-11-10 10:17AM | 0 recs
Re: there is no other side.
Oh, really now?
And the Hispanics went 50/50 on Prop 8.  
You got a solution for that one, too?
by xodus1914 2008-11-10 11:01AM | 0 recs
Re: there is no other side.

50/50 is a far cry from 70/30.  Every racial group--except blacks--went about 50/50.  Blacks stand out without question here.

by slynch 2008-11-12 04:43PM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

How about: we are in a coalition that includes both blacks and gays. Over the years, gays and lesbians have supported black issues and candidates. They have voted for those who advance black interests. People who oppose black interests invariably oppose gay interests. Gays have kept their part of the bargain; blacks just reniged on their part.

by DaleA 2008-11-10 10:04AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

It's not a bargain.

by Jess81 2008-11-10 10:07AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

I'll agree with you there, it isn't a 'bargain', it's a lesson learned at a high price.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 10:13AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

Somehow I have a feeling that the lesson isn't going to be "how to organize better next time".

by Jess81 2008-11-10 10:14AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

I'm sure that will be a part of it.

Perhaps another part of it might color which issues some of us find of importance to us in the future, you know, following the letter writer's suit.

Even gays can be 'taught'.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 10:22AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

Interesting viewpoint.
Newsflash,buddy. Most candidates who support Blacks, also support women, Jews and yes, gays. Gays and Blacks voting for the same Democrats all of these years was in the self-interests of both.

You want to let the white evangelicals use this to drive a wedge, then by all means, go right ahead.

We wil both wind up hanging from the same tree.

Now, if white Gays want to end the B.S. talkingpoints and realize how Blacks voted had nothing to do directly with them, then I'm willing to have a convo.
Anything other than than that is racial bigotry.

by xodus1914 2008-11-10 11:07AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

As of this comment, he's the only one to rec your diary.  Sounds like he's willing to have a conversation.  

by ChitownDenny 2008-11-10 11:14AM | 0 recs
When was this bargain made?

Are you saying that without this bargain gays would be Republicans?

by LiberalDebunker 2008-11-10 11:08AM | 0 recs
Re: When was this bargain made?

When Black politicians with a reform agenda directed at Democratic machines in urban areas needed allies and votes, the bargain was struck. Black elected officials used our votes and money to advance progressive causes. Black elected officials are some of the best friends lesbians and gays have. Which is what makes this so troubling.

by DaleA 2008-11-10 03:28PM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

substitute "interracial marriage" for "gay marriage" and maybe you'll see just how delusional you are.

by BlueDoggyDogg 2008-11-10 10:08AM | 0 recs
Re: Weird side

Playing the who is more oppressed card is a loser no matter who does it. Might as well talk about how hispanics were nearly as oppressed as AAs this past 50 years and how all the attention directed at black/white means no one cares about brown except when it comes to immigration.

We are all in it together. So what if the oppressed minority of white gays doesn't like me or my issues? They are still being oppressed and I am going to fight that oppression for everyone.

by MNPundit 2008-11-10 10:16AM | 0 recs
Re: it's time demos/obama step up for equality

H8 is going to split the democratic party - if they do not act quickly.  

by latina 2008-11-10 10:25AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

Well, why not propose the following: an alliance.  Gay rights organizations agree to help a full vote enfranchisement effort and back reforms and e.g. repeal of the parolee disenfranchisement laws.  Black rights organizations in turn agree to do their part to counteract all the worst and wrongful arguments and resentments that underly much of the voting against gay marriage rights.

I and many other people have said that gay rights groups are making a fundamental mistake in keeping gay couples and their families and their realities, well, in the closet while advocating for their rights.  Likewise, advocacy groups have learned that to get disenfranchisement laws reformed they do have to put a representative set of former felons in the public eye and show them to be decent average citizens and up to the duties of citizenship as well.  Average people do not vote to give public rights to people who will not stand in public and show their suffering and humble nature of their real lives.  

by killjoy 2008-11-10 10:29AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

This makes far too much sense, so you know it will never work.... ;-)

by emsprater 2008-11-10 10:40AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

Best comment I've read on this issue.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 10:55AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side

Dude, you rock.

Blacks see gay marraige as a religious issue.

Gays see it as civil rights issue.

Both groups can agree that it is a political issue, and try to comprimise from there.

Personally, just as Emmit Till was a graphic demonstration of racism, I never understood why Gays never played up Matthew Shepard or the classic situation of a gay person dying and his/her assets go to the estranged family instead of the partner.

This isn't the 60's gays have to show thier pain.

by xodus1914 2008-11-10 11:13AM | 0 recs
Hopefully, A a new Milk

I assure you that there has been a fire lit, and that out of what is going on), I'm sure a new round of gay leadership will arise. A mix of (fully justified) anger and (absolutely necessary) pragmatism is what is needed, and what we will get.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 11:24AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes to Pr

More excuses for discrimination.

When one form of discrimination is not a priority, what forms should be?  Do we draw cards?  Flip coins?

I've supported black causes that do not benefit me AT ALL as a gay white male.  I did so because it was the right thing to do.

by IssaquahIndie 2008-11-10 10:32AM | 0 recs
Re: it is time for outrage.

he's right. denying human rights is never a negotiation.  any inequality toward black americans is and was disgusting and wrong.

and denying equal rights to any other group is equal persecution.

all of us progressives need to pressure our party to give 'full, equal civil rights' to every american.  

black, latino, white, gay, straight, we are all on this site because we believe in that. now it's time we unite - even if the voters couldn't- and demand 'equality for all.'

by latina 2008-11-10 10:59AM | 0 recs
What a selfish load of crap

I can understand the argument if the point was that the black community didn't vote on Prop 8 - then the priority argument would make sense.  But really - does anyone think that an "I'm not getting my rights fully yet so I'm ACTIVELY going to deny someone else theirs" argument is anything other than divisive and spiteful?

We should all be working together to get everyone the rights they're entitled to, and shouldn't turn down any opportunity to do so, regardless of what your feelings on the priority should be.  But if people have the attitude that they're willing to deny others rights because they feel their rights aren't prioritized correctly, then the problem is with them, not with how I'm making "inroads" with them.  And that attitude certainly won't help in winning support to get those rights.

by ThinkerT 2008-11-10 10:59AM | 0 recs
Next year's Prop:

We should start gathering signatures outlawing divorces and non-procreating marriages, seeing as Leviticus is our nation's founding document.  Just a thought.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 11:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Next year's Prop:

I always said we failed when we didn't put up counter amendments each and every time that would call for 'one man, one woman, ONE TIME', and thereby split the evangelical vote because the extreme far right would have to vote to favor their more extreme position.

Apparently while we are 'artsy', we failed the Alexis Carrington School of Cunning and Conniving.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 11:50AM | 0 recs
Re: Next year's Prop:


by ChitownDenny 2008-11-10 11:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Next year's Prop:

Right on Mike.  "Sanctity of marriage" sort of loses something on the 4th or 5th marriage that some of the bigots have, doesn't it?

by IssaquahIndie 2008-11-10 01:12PM | 0 recs
There is no blame to be had
Th author of the piece put the injustices she experiences as a black American above those she experiences as a gay American- its her right.  

It seems like the author also has some serious resentment regarding the way black folks are treated within the gay community- that most certainly needs to be addressed, but is her form of retaliation for alienation the right approach?  Screw the gay community because 'white people' in the gay community make her feel unwelcome and secondary?  Hmm, I don't know about that.
by linc 2008-11-10 12:26PM | 0 recs
Double standard

When Republicans vote en-masse to reject gay rights, everyone here is ready to throw a fit and call out the other side.

But when people within our party so overwhelmingly reject gay rights, such as the black community did on Tuesday, we sit around and try to understand it.

When "they" the Republicans do it, we hurl invective and rightfully so.  When our own do the same thing, we're to be compassionately understanding.

Yet, both oppose gay marriage on the same ground.  A book of fairy tales that has a bunch of misogynistic views, pro slavery views, and so forth, that'd we'd never accept today.  The religious people pick and choose what they want out of the bible, at gay people's peril.

by IssaquahIndie 2008-11-10 01:11PM | 0 recs
Dan Savage's view

"I'm thrilled that we've just elected our first African-American president. I wept last night. I wept reading the papers this morning. But I can't help but feeling hurt that the love and support aren't mutual. I do know this, though I'm done pretending that the handful of racist gay white men out there--and they're out there, and I think they're scum--are a bigger problem for African Americans, gay and straight, than the huge numbers of homophobic African Americans are for gay Americans, whatever their color."

I couldn't say it better.  I stood with the black community of their issues for 20+ years as a voter in many states with both a large black and gay community.  I can see it's not mutual.  Nothing better about a white religious bigot than a black one.  Both reject MY rights based on the same fairy tales.

Since when (excluding GWB) do we make policy based on fairy tales?

by IssaquahIndie 2008-11-10 01:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view
Thanks for calling my faith a fairy tale. The same faith that inspired MLK and Harriet Tubman. The same faith that got my ancestors through slavery. Next time Prop 8 is up, I'll empty out my 401K and send to those damn Mormons to screw you over again. You know, the same Mormons that wouldn't let me join as late as 20 years ago, because they thought Blacks were cursed. "Fairy Tales" indeed. You see how that works ?
by xodus1914 2008-11-10 07:01PM | 0 recs
Your true feeling shine through

by orestes 2008-11-10 07:11PM | 0 recs
Shines through

by orestes 2008-11-10 07:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view

Empty your 401K just to screw homosexuals?

You know you could do that on any street corner for free.

Please, do, empty your pockets for bigotry.

Enjoy your poverty.

by emsprater 2008-11-10 07:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view

He's a very bitter person who obviously doesn't follow the parables sold through the fairy tales.

by IssaquahIndie 2008-11-10 08:28PM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view

I can agree with 'bitter', but I don't agree with 'fairy tales'.  

Now I don't take the book as literal, because I know from study that the original texts were written by men, and have been reinterpreted and translated by men over thousands of years, and as such things get skewed.  Some portions were even omitted effectively by the slaughter of different factions among early Christianity.  I rather stick to the book as a guide for living, and somewhat of a parable for differing  circumstances that humanity sometimes finds on the path of life.

We don't stone people anymore, we don't sacrifice first born calves on alters, and we don't put our women out of the camp during menses.  In other words,  not EVERYTHING in the book is salient to today.

by emsprater 2008-11-11 05:39AM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view

XO: your mask has slipped.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 10:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view
by xodus1914 2008-11-11 03:49AM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view

I realized that in debating you on this, I have not made one thing clear:  I am not among those who blame the AA community or even the AA churches, for the simple fact that I am aware that many members of the community took the correct stand: the mayor of Oakland; the governors of MA and NY; SF DA Kamala Harris: Assemblymember Sandre Swanson; Eva Patterson, Equal Justice Society; President-Elect OBAMA (whose stated position personally 'opposes' same-sex marriage, but opposes more amending the constitution to take away rights).

Likewise, Rev. Amos Brown and Rev. Phillip Lawson have taken the enlightened stand that rights are rights and that checking a box that takes away another's rights is WRONG.

My issue is with YOU insisting that this is a cut-and-dry religious issue.  The opposition to Prop 8 by the above reverends prove otherwise.  You can pick-and-choose your passages (erm, exactly where does Jesus mention gay issues? Zero.  How many times does he mention love?  Countless) to suit your cramped idea of how others should live their lives. Fine.  But when you punch me in the gut, don't come back here asking me to 'understand' why you did, when you had other options.  I understand, many good people made the wrong vote and there needs to be outreach, but, you, sir, are the wrong one to make this argument.  You have revealed yourself as a homophobic bigot in this thread, hiding behind the Bible to justify your prejudices.


by mikeinsf 2008-11-11 08:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Dan Savage's view

Perhaps you should read my other dairy before you call anybody a myopic bigot. 55/322#commenttop

I never said, or implied it was cut & dried. But, Gays parsing and explaining away the Bible's codemnation of homosexuality is delusional and only wastes energy in your battle for equal rights. You folks will NEVER get anyone outside of the gay friendly community to beleive that Jesus condoned homosexuality so quite trying. You want equal right? Here's how I see it.

  1. Press on the matters that you already have the greatest consensus first. Namely, Civil Unions. With some minor tweaking of the arguement, it can become a Democratic Plank and properly framed as parts of the civil rights movement, and hell, most Democrats will go along with it. If the plurality of the gay community still wants marriage, then at the very least you are halfway there with the Civil Unions.  
  2. Make this a political matter at first and then a civil/legal next. Stop insulting people's religion or their interpretation. Like I said, it's a losing battle worldwide and a double loss in the Black community.
  3. If this is a matter of civil/legal rights, then you all should play up the examples that appeal to the largest swath of people at the heart. I'm talking about Matt Shepard, or the dying gay person whose estranged family is trying to take the estate from the loving partner. These are the images that str8 , Christian, Americans can identify with, not angry protesters in front of churches.
  4. HAve a single face (like how the NAACP spoke for African-Americas) and be prepared to answer the tough questions, like the countless examples of environment influencing someone's homosexuality, like child abuse, Adult experimentation, and Adult rape (Ie. prison). I asked this question before in this thread and the other person basically covered their ears and sand  'Na na na...',
  5. Don't put the option in the hands of the people. If you all have learned anything from Prop 8, is that asking the American public for something that you feel is already yours is nonsense. I  don't recall any ballots in the 1960's asking if blacks deserved the right to vote. Prop 8 was a winner as soon as it made the ballot. I remember listening to some white evangelicals talk a few days before the election about how  they were looking forward to working with their "Black and Brown Christian brothers and Sisters" on gettin it passed." When I heard that, I told the wife "This is how they are going to split up the Democratic Party".
  6. Stop assuming that if a person is for civil unions, and gay hate crime legislation (like me), that they can be depended on the support gay marrriage. It's a jump, and it's longer for some than for others.  

by xodus1914 2008-11-12 11:05AM | 0 recs
I am sick of cowtowwing to

the whims of churchgoing bigots.  If they want to get involved in taking away our rights,  then they MUST lose their tax exempt status.  All churchs that uttered a word against Prop 8 should lose their tax exemption---without exception.

I don't care which races voted for or against it.  The bigots all come from the church.  That is a fact.

by Sandy1938 2008-11-10 02:35PM | 0 recs
Re: I am sick of cowtowwing to
Is that a fact? really?
by xodus1914 2008-11-10 07:03PM | 0 recs
Why I disagree with you

I fully buy the argument that it isn't a "top priority" of most black americans - but then simply vote AS THEIR PARTY STATES and BACK No on 8.  If black americans don't care because it's not a priority, vote with the party.

I don't have a child and therefore it's not a priority to ME if children get permission from their parents to have an abortion or not. But I support the Democratics point of view on this and believe it begins to interfere with women's rights.

Whether the African American community believes it's a civil rights issue or not doesn't matter - IT IS. What if voters put forth an amendment to the constitution that stated "Marriage is between one white man and one white woman" and that interracial marriages should be banned because they are "morally wrong"? Well - that WAS the case in the 40's, 50's and even 60's until discrimination became illegal. This is the SAME issue RIGHT NOW, but substitute one man and one woman. The YES ON 8 people have instilled THEIR religious and moral beliefs into OUR constitution and it is discrimation by banning marriage for a segment of the population that WAS ALLOWED to marry on November 3rd. Just as interracial couples can legally marry now - how would you feel if a ban was put through that said it's now not allowed? Just because a religious group deemed it immoral?

by nikkid 2008-11-10 02:58PM | 0 recs

as we saw during the primaries, nothing serves to more quickly divide us w/n the democratic party than provoking racial discord.

i think we can take a look at what happened during this election to find a way for the gay community to gain their rights. obama didn't win just because people were clamoring to vote for a black guy with the middle name Hussein, or even b/c they hated Bush. a big part of his victory was due to old fashioned hard work. i was in ohio most of this year and i was first approached by obama volunteers in March. i would guess that this issue also breaks along generational lines. what kind of outreach was the gay community doing among the under 30 crowd? what percent of eligible voters even showed up to the polls?

At the end of the day, we should not look at this issue as an excuse to lash out at perceived enemies. It's a recipe for future disaster and exactly what the opponents of gay rights want.

by highgrade 2008-11-10 04:11PM | 0 recs
At least here in NY

A very large chunk of those Obama supporters doing the "old fashioned hard work" of this election were gay!

The LGBT community deserved a whole lot better than what they got last Tuesday.

All of us as Democrats should stop making excuses and get to work to change it. Whatever it takes.

by twinmom 2008-11-10 06:01PM | 0 recs
Re: At least here in NY

Yup.  I was in a gay bar Tuesday when it was showing the results.  The cheers and tears of joy were incredible as each state fell blue to Obama. People were ecstatic. Then... we waited...

by mikeinsf 2008-11-11 10:01AM | 0 recs
Why Blacks said yes to Prop 8

nothing in this diary justifies why blacks voted for prop 8 as opposed to against it.

It took just as much effort to check the "yes" box as it would have to check the "no" box and even more than it would have taken to leave the item blank.

The reason people are angry is because it was a bigoted vote supported by a large majority of folks who understand bigotry very well.

I'm white.  I vote for black issues, even though they aren't "priorities" for me.  I'm straight.  But I vote for gay issues, even though they aren't "priorities" for me.  I'm male, but I vote for feminist issues.  etc. etc.  I do that because I'm progressive and I believe in progressive causes.  What this diary is trying to justify is slapping gays--who overwhelmingly helped elect a black president--in the face simply because, for blacks, gay issues aren't "priorities" for them.  Bullshit.

by slynch 2008-11-10 04:35PM | 0 recs
Why rate oppression

There is absolutely no justification for racism. Its a terrible sin, we still deal with in this country. and we have to keep working on issues.  

There is absolutely no justification for sexim either. And I have to say there is no justification for homophobia.  As someone mentioned..this law TOOK away rights that existed. That is absolutely impossible to justify.

For heaven's sake we are NOT in competition for civil rights.  More than anything I want to close GITMO. I want to stop torture. Does that stop me from working for other issues as well.  Of course not. The idea is ridiculous.

Just work for social justice and civil rights for everyone.  Its to the benefit of those who who want to keep us all down for us to snipe like this.  

 Lets move on for heaven's sake.

by KateG 2008-11-10 04:48PM | 0 recs
I call "Bullshit."

I'm going to set aside for the moment "Whatever you do the least of these, you do unto me."  I'm going to set aside for the moment the very core truth that discrimination against one is discrimination against all.  I'm going to set aside for a moment the idea that living in a stratified society where second-class citizenry is maintained hurts the humanity of all in that society, both oppressor and oppressed.

I'm going to set all of that aside for minute, because I want to talk about this idea that white gays "don't know."  And that gay marriage is too much of a bother to try to turn people around on.

Because, well, here's some truth to power for you:

It isn't rich white gays that are the ones that will be most hurt by this.  Rich white gays can afford attorneys.  Rich white gays have wills.  Rich white gays has powers of attorney.  Rich white gays have durable medical powers of attorney.  Rich white gays have family trusts.

Rich white gays are able to make donations to the hospital of their choosing in order to guarantee that they'll have access to their loved ones.  Rich white gays don't have to be concerned that they can't extend social security benefits, or health insurance, or their pension, or disability benefits to the person of their choosing.  

Rich white gays don't have to send their kids to schools where they have to explain that Bobby has two mommies over and over and over again, and hope that the next time is the time that it sticks.  Rich white gays can afford to move to jurisdictions where the non-biological parent can adopt.

It isn't the privileged that are being hurt by Prop 8.  It's the "little gays."  

by Dreorg 2008-11-10 06:43PM | 0 recs
Re: I call "Bullshit."

Yup!  Thanks, Dreorg!

by mikeinsf 2008-11-10 10:29PM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes

Gay activists need to get a clue and just remove the term marriage from the debate discussions. Concentrate on getting all the benefits of marriage first. Focus on the term civil unions. Speak in terms of legalese and the only time you bring the human aspect is bring up vivid examples in the debate that all the gays are asking for is the right as a partner in situations such as sickness or inheritance. I know I became sympathetic to the cause when I watched one of those HBO movies where Vanessa Redgrave plays an old lesbian whose partner dies and she has to endure the partner's family come and take everything away without any consideration of her status as the dead lady's spouse and she was powerless to do anything about the house and the belongings.

Marriage is a freaking social construct anyway. Why is polygamy illegal for that matter? I have heard gay people say "hey we are monogomous at least" .  I know for a fact that there are quite a few gay people opposed to polygamy. Why is that stance better? Not all polygamists marry underage women or servile women even if the majority of them are not exactly models for others to follow. If I want to marry two women(hell, I have trouble marrying one) or some lady wants to marry two men, and everyone is of legal age, who the hell is the state to stop them? The point of this is not to advocate legalizing polygamy(I am indifferent to the issue). But to show that everyone has their own value judgements about what is appropriate or even if acceptable, what constitutes a high priority issue. Personally, for me, gay marriage is not a high priority issue for me. Gay civil unions, gay military service, gay discrimination at jobs and housing are much higher priorities for me.

Even the civil rights movement came slowly in many steps and it is still a struggle. A black person does not have the luxury of being anonymous with respect to their identity.  A gay person has unless they are really stereotypically "out" there.

by Pravin 2008-11-11 05:31AM | 0 recs
Re: From the other side: Why Blacks said yes

I'm not looking to get married any time soon.  I could care less.  It is the subtext of what is going on here that infuriates.

This was an attack, pure and simple.

by mikeinsf 2008-11-11 09:24AM | 0 recs


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