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Hey Dems: We're dealing with the civil unions thing -- please don't make it worse!

by Jeremy Hooper

Alright, so the current Democratic meme on gay marriage is that even if our most visible candidates support full equality, they are rarely going to say so. Standing up for what is right and inevitable is still widely seen as a political land mine, so the best our could-be supporters will offer us is support for civil unions. We get that and we're reluctantly accepted it (the strategy, not the civil unions compromise).

Picture 12-47However, something about the following comments, which Barack Obama made to local media during a Sunday campaign stop in Berks County, PA, kinda rubs us the wrong way:

The senator also addressed several topics on Sunday including a local issue he has so far been reluctant to take on, legislation pending in Harrisburg that would ban gay marriage in the commonwealth.

If I were in the state legislature, I would oppose it, Obama said.

Obama's silence on the proposed amendment to the state's constitution has proven worrisome to local gay rights groups who have largely thrown their support behind Hillary Clinton and just two days before the primary he made his position clear.

I'm not in favor of gay marriage but I certainly don't want to see a court suggesting that somehow we can't pass laws that say gays and lesbians aren't being discriminated against," Obama said.

Okay, uhm -- what?! Your response to the most mean-spirited, liberty-stifling form of legislation to grace the landscape in recent memory is to offer delicate opposition to the measure while, in virtually the same breath, expressing a staunch objection to the equality that it is targeting? And your reasoning is because you don't want the legislation to prevent future anti-discrimination laws that might come down the pipe? Hey, here's an idea, Barack Star: STAND IN REASONED OPPOSITION TO THE CRUEL DISCRIMINATION THAT IS CURRENTLY ON THE TABLE!!!!!!!

Considering it's just a quip made at one campaign stop, we're not going to react too harshly to this one comment, preferring to let some of his more reasonable statements shine through. However, as this whole electoral train rolls along, we certainly hope that Mr. Obama will make certain to put more emphasis on what should be the Democratic party's all-out war against mean-spirited bias, rather than on the Democratic party's electorally sound (yet fundamentally flawed) challenge to full equality!

*Video report at link: Obama Addresses Crowd In Berks County [CBS 3]

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Your thoughts

Yet another reason why the gay community needs to stop wasting their time and money on democrats, and start working with an independent who's interested in forming an all-inclusive party (aka "I don't give a damn what you do in your bedroom", "don't care what color you are", "don't care if you're christian, muslim or atheist").

Something like that could really throw both dems and repubican't's for a loop. Might even be the death warrant for one of those parties down the road.

Posted by: Scott | Apr 22, 2008 12:55:43 PM

I read that five times and still can't figure out what he's saying.

"I'm not in favor of gay marriage but I certainly don't want to see a court suggesting that somehow we can't pass laws that say gays and lesbians aren't being discriminated against," Obama said.

Is he saying that passing laws that say that gays and lesbians aren't discriminated against is same thing as passing laws that discriminate against gays and lesbians?

I think I'm missing something.


Posted by: dave b | Apr 22, 2008 2:22:28 PM

dave: It's not you -- it's a confusing statement.

I think he's saying that he doesn't want to see any measure that might, due to its wording, force a court to rule against gay rights (including but not limited to marriage).

Posted by: | Apr 22, 2008 2:31:48 PM

I'll buy that - thanks. Just clumsy wording, I suppose.

Posted by: dave b | Apr 22, 2008 2:51:26 PM

I think the closest person to that was Ron Paul til we found out what he really thought and said about us back when.
Honestly when it comes down to it I dont think the president will play much of a role in gay rights other than appointing supreme court justices. Hilary seems most supportive and actually told a quite touching story on Ellen about her parents living next door to gay neighbors in Arkansas but that doesn't mean I think she wouldn't throw us under the bus if she had to (ala Bill Don't ask don't tell and DOMA)

Posted by: Ron | Apr 22, 2008 2:56:28 PM

This is why I vote libertarian! :)

Posted by: Jessica | Apr 22, 2008 3:09:25 PM


Ron Paul never appealed to me (my choice was Bill Richardson).

Even then, I don't care for wishy-washy candidates either. There's some of them who sound decently pro-gay, but there's always a ".....but".

Sorry, I don't want to hear about any "but's" unless it belongs to Mario Lopez.

As long as your business is between two consenting adults, and doesn't involve children or animals, I don't get why your own personal "morality" should be up for discussion or debate with all these guys in the first place.

These people need to worry about the country, the economy, etc. What goes on in your own bedroom, especially when it's totally legal, should be the LAST thing they're talking about.

Posted by: Scott | Apr 22, 2008 7:46:03 PM

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