Tag Archives: gay rights

Will Obama Display Backbone On Gay Rights?

President Barack Obama spent his first year in office surrounded by Harvard types who told him the safe way is the coward way of life. He refused to do anything about jobs and he refused to address issues about the rights of gays in the military. For some reason, he is surprised that those who supported him regard his presidency as Bush lite. There are rumors in today’s State of the Union address chocolate eclair backbone Obama may finally come out and stand tall for gay rights in the military. A man whose group refused to take second class citizenship lying down refused for an entire year to speak out on behalf of our gay countrymen who risk their lives in combat!

The “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy is a disgrace to thousands of our fighting men and women who daily risk their lives while congressmen who have never fought pontificate about morality. Any congressmen who refuses to change this law should head to the nearest recruiting station and volunteer for front line combat. If not, change this insulting law.

John McCain Palinates On Gay Rights!

Once upon a time there was a bright young man who was filled with moral outrage at the use of torture since he had been subjected to an incredibly difficult time while in a Vietnam prison. Once upon a time John McCain stood against the crowd and was willing to endure unpopularity if he believed in his ideas. In response to requests that Congress end the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy which punishes brave young Americans, the Arizona senator urged the military to conduct a survey as to what soldiers thought about ending discrimination against gays. I assume, Senator McCain believes the government should have conducted a survey of southern white beliefs on segregation during the fight over civil rights.

There is no need for surveys, there is no need for further debate. The rights of our fighting men and women are being abused because some members of the military are gays and lesbians. They may be gay or lesbian, but more importantly, they are members of the military and are risking their lives in defense of this nation. The least this nation can do in return is to fight for their rights to individual freedom of choice in sexual matters.

Gay Week For California Gays?

A century ago, progressives were concerned at the control exerted by wealthy businessmen over the government of California and pushed through the concept of a state referendum which allowed the majority of Californians to exert their voices on legislation. As the years progressed, state “propositions” proliferated and all it required were some energetic groups backed by money to place a proposition on the ballot. In many cases, few people even understood the meaning of propositions, but they exemplified the concept of “democracy.” Last fall, California voters by 52% to 48% declared gay marriages illegal. Today, the California Supreme Court will decide if the 52% voice of the people is stronger than the rights of gays to be married.

Over 18,000 gay couples have married since it became legal in California. If the Supreme Court backs the proposition, it is still unclear as to the status of those who already are married. Perhaps, the voice of the people is not always the best route to freedom. Just remember the 1950s when Senator Joseph McCarthy frightened millions with his claims there were “communists” under every bed and thousands of innocent people lost their jobs.

Can I Walk With A Man Dressed Like A Woman?

There were fewer than three dozen men and women who gathered to protest against lack of gay rights in Russia, but to the police they represented forces of revolution who threatened to over turn the government. An “unsanctioned protest” called “slavic pride” aroused concern on the part of Russian authorities who rushed vans of police to the place of protest in order to maintain law and order. The gay pride group shouted threatening slogans such as: “Equal Rights! Homophobia Is A National Disgrace!” TV cameras rolled as police seized members of the group in order to take them away to prison.

Nikolai Alexeyev was walking arm and arm with a drag queen when police questioned him. He asked what was the nature of the offense he was committing and was told: “We have reason to think that you are going for a walk with a man dressed up like a woman.” I guess if a woman walks arm and arm with a woman dressed like a man it is equally threatening to law and order in Putin, Russia.

I wonder how one proves if dressed like a woman that you are really a woman and not a man dressed like a woman.

US Endorses UN Gay Rights Statement

The Obama administration formally endorsed a United Nations statement which calls for the decriminalization of homosexuality, a measure that George Bush refused to sign. State Department spokesperson, Robert Wood said: “The United States supports the UN’s statement on human rights, sexual orientation and gender equity and its pleased to sign the other 65 UN member states who have declared their support of the statement.” He emphasized that America stood for human rights and is a critic of those who brutalize and oppress humans based on sexual orientation.

Gay groups will undoubtedly support the Obama decision, but we can expect anti-gay groups to once again denounce any action by the government to support gay rights. Ironically, Bush in refusing to sign the statement placed the United States on the same side as Pakistan or Saudi Arabia or China or Iran.

Turkey Backs Away From Gay Rights Declaration

A major goal of Turkey is to become a member of the European Union, but there are occasions when Turkish leaders do not recognize membership in that body requires adopting attitudes which run counter to their own. Turkey angered many Europeans by refusing to sign a European Union-led declaration presented to the United Nations which urged nations of the world to take action to ensure gay and lesbian rights. An EU ambassador told the liberal Turkish newspaper, Hurriyet, “it’s very frustrating for Turks who wish to become a member of the EU” to be criticized for failure to support European positions. The declaration condemned “violence, harassment, discrimination, exclusion, stigmization and prejudice” against people on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identify.

Turkey is arguing is position is similar to that of the Vatican and many Arab nations which are hostile to gay rights. Unfortunately, for Turkey, neither the Vatican nor Arab states will have a voice in determining European Union membership. At this point, Turkey is the only nation applying for EU membership that refuses to sign the declaration.

Bollywood Goes Gay–Maybe?

The typical Bollywood film follows a distinctive story line in which the daring young man takes care of the bad guys and is rewarded with love of the decent young beautiful girl. In a sense, Bollywood is where Hollywood used to be in the wondrous days of the 1950 when heterosexual love was the only love in town. Suddenly, a slight cloud is appearing over the horizon in the film industry’s latest offering, “Dostana”(friendship), a film about two men who pretend to be a couple in which homosexuality(which is illegal in prudish, religious India) is a running theme. Ashok Row Kavi, a leading gay activist in India believes the film offers interesting possibilities. “I think the film does a lot for gays in a country where the word homosexual does not even exist for many people.”

As one reviews the history of gay rights in the United States, a role in changing attitudes stemmed from the movie and television industries which introduced gay and lesbian characters years before any politician would dare to even suggest any sort of concern for gay and lesbian rights. Perhaps, this first film to hint at homosexuality will herald in additional movie and television situations which become educating forces in altering traditional views.

Obama Will Go Slow On Gay Issues

Barack Obama inherits an economy that is slowly sinking, severe problems in Afghanistan and with Pakistan which makes most unlikely he will take the gay armed forces issue head on. The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network which supports gay rights expects Obama to work slowly on this issue. As far as the Network is concerned, they are quite willing to “get it done in the next Congress.” The recent announcement by over a 100 retired generals and admirals urging acceptance of gay members of the military will help in persuading top level leaders to change the infamous, “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

The best policy for Obama is to ask the Joint Chiefs of Staff to study the issue and give him a recommendation. This most likely would lead to a repeal and it would sail through Congress if it was based on a Joint Chiefs recommendation.

Gay Rights Extended In Sweden

In America, the state of California denied gays the right to get married, but Sweden was going in the opposite direction. Gay partnerships may currently register their intention to be wed in a civil ceremony, but the Swedish legislature is expected to change the law and beginning in May, 2009, gays and lesbians will be allowed to marry in the Church of Sweden. This marks the first time any nation has allowed gay marriages as permitted in a church ceremony. The new legislature will also allow gays to adopt children.

Sweden has pointed the way for other nations by allowing gays equal rights to marriage. Perhaps, one day, the people of California will learn from Sweden the meaning of democracy and equal rights.

Don’t Be Gay In Africa These Days!

Pape Mbaye was a famous entertainer in Senegal, he was enjoying a good life and was highly respected and admired for his singing, dancing, and storytelling, but one day he committed an unpardonable sin in the eyes of many of his countrymen, he helped stage a gay wedding. It also became apparent he might even be a gay person. In February of this year, the media reported stories about a gay wedding and Mbaye’s name was mentioned as the person who organized the affair. In the subsequent weeks, Mbaye was harassed by police, attacked by mobs, driven from his home, ripped to pieces by the media, and forced to live on the run. In July, the United States offered him refugee status which was unusual since most people who are persecuted for sexual orientation ordinarily obtain this status.

Mbaye is now in the Bronx living in semi-poverty and making it a point to avoid having much contact with the American community of Senegalese. He was stopped one day by a m an from Senegal who told him: “If you were in Senegal, I would kill you.” There is little doubt in poverty stricken Africa it is easier for governments to go after gays in order to distract people from poverty and war. Anti-gay hysteria is now sweeping large sections of the continent.

Mbaye is content to be in America. “There’s security, there’s independence, there’s peace” he says.