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Obama: I don't agree with him, but he can get me some votes

by Jeremy Hooper

 Good As You Images Picture-3-77 2-1Barack Obama has released a statement regarding Donnie McClurkin (pic.), the "former homosexual" and current gay rights opponent that the candidate has recruited to join him on a brainstorming tour of South Carolina. In a message posted on his LGBT-focused sub-site, Obama says:

"I have clearly stated my belief that gays and lesbians are our brothers and sisters and should be provided the respect, dignity, and rights of all other citizens. I have consistently spoken directly to African-American religious leaders about the need to overcome the homophobia that persists in some parts of our community so that we can confront issues like HIV/AIDS and broaden the reach of equal rights in this country.

I strongly believe that African Americans and the LGBT community must stand together in the fight for equal rights. And so I strongly disagree with Reverend McClurkin's views and will continue to fight for these rights as President of the United States to ensure that America is a country that spreads tolerance instead of division.

Alright, so it's fab that the candidate has come out against McCLurkin's views. However, as of now, the tour is still going ahead as planned. So is it (a) good that McClurkin and his usual audience will get exposure to Obama's pro-gay acceptance views, or (b) bad that the Dem hopeful is selling out LGBT people in order to capture a specific vote? Well, that's open for debate. On one hand there's an opportunity to open some hearts and minds, but on the other there is the fear that a President Obama may sign an anti-gay measure with which he doesn't agree just so that he doesn't piss off some potentially supportive 'mo foes.

Pro-Gay Rock--------OBAMA-------Anti-Gay Hard Place

Principled stands vs. political campaigning: Unfortunately in America, the two are often unreconcilable.

Statement on Rev. McClurkin [Obama Pride]

**Oh, and it's not just McClurkin. Gospel duo Mary Mary, who have viciously spoken out about the "gay lifestyle," are also on the bill. Rod McCullom and Jasmyne Cannick have more.

**UPDATE, 10/24: McClurkin: I was misquoted many, many, many, many, many, many times [G-A-Y]

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Your thoughts

Religion this - religion that. Ugh. The religious rhetoric coming from both sides is like food that has monosodium glutamate added to it - it gives me a headache.

Posted by: EvilPoet | Oct 23, 2007 10:05:26 AM

From a candidate who says he can bring change to politics, that's disappointing. And what does he mean by "lesbians and gays should be provided the rights of all other citizens"? Since when has he been pro same-sex marriage?!

Posted by: Jujupiter | Oct 23, 2007 10:33:35 AM

Honestly, as a member of the Black Christian community, Obama couldn't do a Gospel concert without having some major gospel artist who has anti-gay beliefs. Yes, Donnie has been very vocal about his, but it's no secret that most of these artists, and the denominations they come from, aren't gay friendly. I'm pretty sure Mary Mary wrote a song that was anti-gay. I've heard other artists put songs on their albums saying things like "come out of homosexuality." To my knowledge, there are no mainstream Gospel artist who are publicly pro-gay.

So, the only options he has really is just not to do a Gospel tour or to have one and appreciate the music for what it is and who it speaks to.

And finally, Obama, Hillary, and Edwards are never going to come out in favor of full marriage rights as long as they are running for President. That's the perfect fodder that the religious right needs to get out their vote. It's no secret that Democrats are pro-choice. But to have a front-runner who's pro-gay-marriage, that would really get the right going and we could potentially have a repeat of 2004 where people are voting because marriage is the issue.

Posted by: ccw | Oct 23, 2007 10:46:51 AM

We don't expect the main Democratic front-runners to come out in favor of same-sex marriage during this campaign, but we certainly don't expect them to integrate homophobic persons in their campaigns.

Posted by: Jujupiter | Oct 23, 2007 11:42:01 AM

"But to have a front-runner who's pro-gay-marriage, that would really get the right going and we could potentially have a repeat of 2004 where people are voting because marriage is the issue."

Certainly the fact that Bill and Hillary Clinton handed the Republicans DOMA on a silver platter had something to do with 2004. DOMA was enacted with a bone crushing bipartisan majority of 85-24 in the Senate and 342-67 in the House. Most Democrats supported DOMA. Those 509 bipartisan Democrats and Republicans bigoted votes changed our lives for the worse.
Right after the vote Bill Clinton, this was before Monica Lewinsky’s dress sported all those gooey white stains, hastily signed it into law to "guarantee the sanctity of marriage”. In truth, it was to attract homobigoted voters in the congressional elections that occurred two weeks later in the fall of '96. It worked for Republicans but boomeranged on the Democrats.

In addition to betraying GLBT folk the big reason the Democrats lost in 2004 was their betrayal of working people and unionists by ramming NAFTA through the Congress. Working people will remember that one for a long time. The Democrats greed and treachery is the reason scores of millions boycott the elections, insuring Republican victories.

Posted by: Bill Perdue, RainbowRED | Oct 23, 2007 9:37:04 PM

I am a christian minister. the main concern in which I think most American's are concerned, is by a understanding of a person's ethical charector is whether they can be trusted that all they say they will do they will do. The age of which Obama is, comes from a time in which the youth of America cried out for change. it still remains the same. the only change that will come is prayer. God help us before the anti-christ comes, he promises change also.Daniel 7:25

Posted by: David Coleman | Feb 27, 2008 1:38:17 PM

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