Friday, December 19, 2008

So. Not. Good.

What. The. Fuck.:
It is difficult to comprehend how our president-elect, who has been so spot on in nearly every political move and gesture, could fail to grasp the symbolism of inviting an anti-gay theologian to deliver his inaugural invocation. And the Obama campaign's response to the anger about this decision? Hey, we're also bringing a gay marching band. You know how the gays love a parade.

Yes, the Rev. Rick Warren, pastor of the humongous, evangelical Saddleback Church in Orange County, Calif., has a sound message on poverty. And certainly, in the world of politics, there is a view that Barack Obama owes Warren for bringing him before fellow evangelicals, despite fierce opposition during the heat of the presidential campaign.

But here's the other thing about Warren, the author of the bestselling book "The Purpose Driven Life": He was a general in the campaign to pass California's Proposition 8, which dissolved the legal marriage rights of loving, committed same-sex couples.

For that reason, inviting Warren to set the tone at the dawn of this new presidency sends a chilling message to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans. It makes us uncertain about this exciting, young president-elect who has said repeatedly that we are part of his America, too.

(I just got settled in at my parents' house for the holidays and this was a rude jolt out of my relaxed, happy holiday state. Argh. Thanks, Fred, for the links.)


vpass said...

I couldn't agree more, and yet I am not surprised at all. If any of you are members go and vote for Gay Marriage to be their top priority moving forward, because clearly it won't be a priority for our next president.

vpass said...

I just realized that MoveOn's voting is over and they have let us down too, only about 8% of people voted for gay rights as a priority.

Erin Hoagland said...

"I just realized that MoveOn's voting is over and they have let us down too, only about 8% of people voted for gay rights as a priority."

While I agree that it is a disappointment, I do not feel that MoveOn and its members (of which I am one) have let us down. The big picture is just too bleak and many, myself included, voted for the three priorities that would mean the most for the most people. Universal Healthcare and Economic Recovery are vitally important for ALL Americans and without focus on those issues, hundreds of millions of us will suffer over the next few years.

President Elect Obama is taking charge of the bleakest, most at-risk America ever known. Many economists are saying that we're only at the beginning of a 5+ year decline, financially speaking. Our entire nation is in massive debt to China and we are still embroiled in a trillion-dollar-a-day war that we cannot win.

Of course I agree that our equality is an important issue and of course I agree that we should fight for our equality with everything we have. But many of us are also dealing with job losses and economic collapse and rising health care costs and other crises that are more immediate, more devastating in the short term. Equality under the law means little to me if I cannot pay the rent or feed my family.

When I voted in the MoveOn survey, I voted for Universal Health Care, Economic Recovery, and the Restoration of Civil Liberties as my top three. Ending the War in Iraq was my fourth vote, and then LGBT Rights. It was a very difficult decision to make but finally, for me, it came down to what was best for the greatest number of people over the shortest period of time. Obama has--at the most--8 years to bring change to issues that would take any leader decades to address. I have no problem with a prioritization of focus for his and the rest of the nation's efforts.

Time is on the side of LGBT people and their supporters. Every year, more and more people support gay equality. We will continue to fight for our rights and we will win them.

But there is also a lot of other work to do because I am not only a lesbian. I am also a health care worker, a consumer, a daughter of aging parents, a partner, a head of household, a chronic disease sufferer, a student, a woman, an aunt, a sister, an American, and a human being.