As conservatives hope against hope that gay marriage is never passed in their respective states of residence, Barack Obama, who won the “pink vote” during the 2008 presidential election has done no better than a vegetable stricken with bystander effect when it comes to supporting gay rights.
Understandably, many gay voters deplore President Obama’s slow rate of progress in establishing gay rights and equality, particularly in the arenas of marriage and the military.
As early as February 2010, U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen will testify at a congressional hearing on the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy concerning gays serving openly in the military.
Don’t Ask Don ‘t Tell, challenges conservatives to come to terms with their idea of a strong military. Who should and should not serve? Should gays and lesbians in the military be allowed to speak out about their personal lives? Can they marry on base like straight soldiers?
Currently, many gays have been discharged from service who were excellent soldiers and offered valuable skills such as weapons or language capabilities which should under “normal” circumstance render them indispensable.
Despite President Obama pledging to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the pink vote has noticed his annoying tendency to waffle as he has done with so many other campaign promises he made to liberals.
From this article in the Wall Street Journal:
Ask Obama About Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell
Ask Obama About Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell
Gay voters are growing impatient for equality.
JANUARY 24, 2010
By RICHARD SOCARIDES
Current law does not require the services to discharge members based on sexual orientation per se. Rather, it looks to certain conduct to create a presumption for discharge. Thus, the Department of Defense has the authority to devise regulations that determine when such prohibited conduct has occurred. Defense could also interpret the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell statute more literally (as intended) and refuse to discharge a service member unless he willfully discloses that he is gay, which almost never happens. Finally, Defense could invoke current regulations to retain gay service members in the interest of national security. All are good options.
What is especially troubling, however, is Mr. Obama’s oversensitivity to a dwindling minority of bigots on this issue. Hundreds of military careers have been destroyed on his watch for no valid reason. The country has been deprived of the talents of these service members and has wasted millions of dollars on their training.
Many wonder when their president will show the same kind of concern for the constitutional rights of gay American service members as he has for enemy combatants held at Guantanamo Bay. Many wonder what the administration’s willingness to treat gay Americans as second-class citizens says to Uganda and other countries that are considering laws that would subject gays to imprisonment and even death.
Gay Americans have been among the president’s most ardent supporters. Their enthusiasm, and that of their families and friends, could be crucial in this year’s elections. The president’s action—or inaction—on Don’t Ask Don’t Tell will be noticed.
An increasingly frustrated bloc of gay voters—angry over marriage setbacks in California, Maine, New Jersey and New York and emboldened by Ted Olson’s and David Boies’s high-profile effort to declare unconstitutional laws that prohibit gay marriage—are growing impatient for equality. As Mr. Olson said in federal district court in San Francisco recently, discriminatory laws serve only to “label gay and lesbian persons as different, inferior, unequal and disfavored.”
Afrocity wonders, who exactly is this “minority of bigots” the WSJ opinion piece is referring to?
Minority…Hmmm. That is an interesting choice of words.
We all know that there is a perception gap between Obama supporters and supporters of gay rights. African Americans have been rather consistent in their lack of open armed embrace for the gay community. An African America vote for Obama does not not necessarily translate into a pink vote. While the gay culture within the black community as been somewhat acknowledged with the advent of “Black Gay Pride Week” and an increase in openly gay black celebrities such as Wanda Sykes, the black gay movement still seems wholly autonomous. There is cultural tension between African Americans, gays, and religion. I believe this is the reason for Obama’s waffling on gay rights. The black church ain’t having that and Obama knows it. To appease one group means offending another. As progressive as Barack Obama professes to be, he still owes much of his election to African Americans who do not support gay rights. This dilemma will continue to haunt the pink vote which has become the battered stepchild of the Obama administration. Like the anti-war moonbats such as Code Pink, Obama has slept with you, now it is time for gays and lesbians to put on their clothes and take the walk of shame bus back home. I promise that Obama is very much so ever “into you”. He will call you in oh, say 2011.
While I am not an actively involved in supporting gay rights, I am not opposed to gay marriage. I just find it interesting that Republican moderates and conservatives divide over whether we should support gay rights out of fear of the Obama presidency pushing pro-gay legislation through, when in reality there is not much pushing from the left. Where is the big fight for gays from Barack Obama?
I did not hear anything about fighting for gays during Obama’s speech in Ohio last week.
Still, don’t look for the pink vote to be back on the market anytime soon…And don’t look for Obama to mention one iota about gays or lesbians during his State of the Union address on hump day.
Autographed Letter Signed,