Thursday, November 30, 2006

Democrats continue attacks on marriage equality

Here's yet another example of what kind of behavior we can expect from a new Democratic majority in government:

Though Democrats captured Indiana's House of Representatives on election day, gay rights activists shouldn't count on making up any lost ground just yet.

Soon-to-be House Speaker Patrick Bauer, D-South Bend, announced before the elections that he would allow SJR07, the proposed amendment to the state constitution that would explicitly ban gay marriage, to be heard again in 2007.

Someone please explain to me how this at all represents the lesser of two evils. Both major parties look equally evil to me.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Romney: We don't like activist judges, except for when we do like them

Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, faced with a Legislature that refuses to put equality under the law for the minority up for a vote by the majority, is asking the state's supreme court to force a same-sex marriage ban onto the 2008 ballot.

This is the exact same governor who accused the exact same court of being "activist" and legislating from the bench when it ruled that the Massachusetts constitution requires equality under the law for same-sex couples. Is his problem now with an "activist" legislature?

What a hypocrite!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Obama Doesn't "Get" Civil Liberty

In this guest editorial published by the Bay Area Reporter (one of San Francisco's largest LGBT papers), author John P. Mortimer points out the inconsistency of Democratic mega-personality Barack Obama in opting for "separate but equal" treatment (as opposed to full marriage equality) for same-sex couples.

You would think, as a black former civil rights lawyer, Obama would know that "separate but equal" was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education in 1954.

Obama claims his religion is the cause of his legal blind spot. This is the obviously flexible religious belief system that allows him to be pro-choice on abortion while being opposed to marriage equality. Let's evaluate that from a religious point of view: he thinks murder of fetuses is OK, but he's gotta stop those gays from marrying!

We suspect his position has less to do with his religious beliefs than the latest directives from the pollsters at Democratic party headquarters to back-off on gay rights. But, we really shouldn't second-guess his motives: It could be that he is just as incompetent at theology as he is at civil rights law.

McCain Out of Touch With Arizona Voters

Republican John McCain, the presidential contender, missed the boat on Arizona proposition 107, which would have banned same-sex marriage in the state. From a column in the Arizona Daily Star:
Prop. 107 was the first ballot query of its kind in the nation to fail, and McCain was held up as an endorser of the measure and of its architect, Len Munsil, who ran for governor as a Republican.
And just in case you still don't understand how your rights might fare under a McCain administration, McCain drives the point home:
I just want to point out again: I believe that gay marriage should not be legal. OK?
Libertarians are given substantial credit for the defeat of prop. 107 in the column. So, if you want marriage equality, you had better not support McCain and the Republicans. And, our previous posts here, here and here make it pretty clear you had better not support Pelosi and the Democrats, either.

With the Libertarian Party, our equal legal rights come first, even if one happens to be an LGB or T person. Vote for your Libertarian candidates, and eventually the Democrats will come to understand that they can't just count on getting our votes, while deliving nothing in return; the Republican party will be forced to come to terms with its libertarian wing, relegating the social conservative agenda to where it belongs (the hind teat). Plus, you never know, in a few years we may even elect some partisan Libertarian candidates who would fight for our rights in the legislature in person.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Prominent Liberal Lesbian Commentator: "Don't Bet On Barack"

Now that the reverie over the Democrats' backlash-induced victory has worn off, gay liberals who view gay equality under the law as a real issue, rather than a wedge issue to win victory for their party, have started getting troubled. The Pelosi announcement that the anti-gay military ban is staying, and that gay issues in general were off the table, gave many pause from across the political spectrum.

The latest concern for the left is the Reverend Irene Monroe, who writes in the Advocate that:
Obama delivered a visionary keynote speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2004, when he stated, “There’s not a liberal America and a conservative America. There’s the United States of America. There’s not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America. There’s the United States of America…. We worship an awesome God in the blue states, and we don’t like federal agents poking around our libraries in the red states. We coach Little League in the blue states and have gay friends in the red states,” made him America's great hope for a better future.

As a supposedly bipartisan politician who understands and reconciles opposing views, and a non-doctrinal Christian whose personal identity and life journey shaped his lens to include those on the margins, why then, I ask, is this presidential hopeful not united with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer voters on the issue of marriage equality?
more . . .
I'd suggest that Mr. Obama's lack of support for the rights of gays is nothing new -- it's virtually required these days in order to be a "rising star" in the Democratic Party of 2006. In fact, it was also required to be a rising star in the Democratic Party of 1996, as Bill Clinton's strong endorsement of the DOMA indicates.

Here's Libertarian Party presidential candidate Michael Badnarik on gay marriage:
My position on the issue of gay marriage is simple. Individuals have rights. Gays are individuals. Case closed.


The first marriage licenses were issued by the government in an effort to prevent or regulate interracial marriage. Marriage licenses were generated due to racial bigotry, and this marriage amendment is based on sexual preference bigotry.
Short, sweet, to the point, and a position that virtually every gay person can support.

Some argue that a vote for a Libertarian presidential candidate is a "no hope" proposition, that we should support anti-gay Democrats in order to achieve "something tangible." Well, presently, the Democrats have already delivered something "tangible" -- nothing at all. And after hundreds of millions of dollars and gay votes expended since the early 1990s on Democrats, Democrats still have nothing to offer gay families.

I'd humbly suggest that we can -- and will -- do much better when we support the candidates and party that supports us with the same level of votes and campaign cash, to illustrate to the Obamas, Pelosis and Clintons that our votes and support need to be earned, not bullied out of gays presented with the Hobson's choice of an anti-gay Democrat or even more anti-gay Republican.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Nine Out of Fifty? Is That All You've Got?

According to an article in the Washington Blade, only nine of the 50 Democratic freshmen legislators are known to support full marriage equality. A greater number, thirteen, oppose same-sex marriage and two support a constitutional amendment banning such unions.

So it appears that LGBT faith in the Democratic party has been misplaced. More of the newly elected Democrats are opposed to than favor marriage equality.

Democratic party apologist Samantha Smoot, political director of the Human Rights Campaign, is attempting to smooth over the glaring lack of support from the new Democrats for equal legal rights for LGBT persons:
We have some very progressive new members. We also have some very conservative new members. There are a number of Democrats who are not necessarily with us on most issues at this time, so we have our work cut out for us, even though Congress is now in the hands of fair-minded leaders.
more . . .
I read that last sentence several times, and still haven't figured out what she meant by "fair minded." Obviously, something other than fairness towards gays.

Says John Marble, a spokesman for the Stonewall Democrats:
We do have more conservative Democrats who were elected, but that doesn’t mean they won’t be supportive of LGBT issues.
Then again, it could mean just that. Happily, here at Outright Libertarians we seldom have to apologize for the stance our Libertarian candidates take on LGBT issues. Of course, it could be worse. Poor John could be a spokesman for the Log Cabin Republicans instead of the Stonewall Democrats.

The most sensible statements came from Markos “Kos” Moulitsas Zuniga, a liberal blogger, and Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to congress. Said Ellison:
If my gay neighbor suffers from discrimination, then I suffer as well, and so does the entire community, just as when my female neighbor is held down by a glass ceiling, or my new immigrant neighbor is treated in a way that makes him or her feel unwelcome in our country.
and in support, Kos' reply...
As long as we talk about fairness and opportunity instead of what the gays are getting, what the blacks are getting, what the women are getting, if we can get away from that, and talk about a fair society, a just society, it gets much harder for the opposition.
Some fairly libertarian sentiments. Ellison realizes that cooperation and a civil society benefit all the members of that society, and Kos advises us to talk about equal rights, not special rights; and of equal opportunities, not equal outcomes.

Too bad these are not the majority views of the Democrats.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Democrats comment on Pelosi gay rights flip-flop

Did we say that Democrats were the party of gay rights? Ooops, we meant, gay rights aren't that important:
Having Frank and Meehan move on this right away and lose catastrophically, amidst intense media and Republican garbage about how the House is repeating Clinton's mistake of 1993, making gays in the military one of his very first priorities


Doing this in a few months, after carefully laying the plans for a floor debate, and actually having a chance of getting it passed in both the House and Senate -

Which makes more sense both for gays and lesbians in the military currently and for getting other things like ENDA further down the road?
more . . .
I wasn't aware it was an either-or situation!
Do you remember 1993?

When Clinton tried to do this? The press is majorly homophobic and they will be goaded on by the Republican party. If she tried to do this right away, regardless of what polls say, she would be fried in the media and it would have huge reverberations for the rest of the Democratic agenda. SAN FRANCISCO VALUES would be trumpeted in the headlines of major newspapers across the country. I fervently hope this will be addressed, but to expect her to make it one of her first priorities is not realistic, considering the huge shitstorm that would erupt from the Republicans and the media.
Well, at least they're willing to take risks!
It's a big "culture war" issue and it's not something they evidently think is wise to bring to the forefront early on. Like I said, I'd rather they pass it down the road than bring it up right away and have it turn into a media firestorm about how out of touch Nancy Pelosi is with America's priorities.
I suppose that without this issue, the Republicans will instead insist that Ms. Pelosi is in touch with America's priorities.
We are about to lose the war in Iraq no matter what we do. Do you honestly want them to be able to blame it on our making "drastic" changes in the military during a time of crisis? I don't.
We already saw how effective scapegoating "the gays" was for the Republicans in the last election (not very).
I hate to say this, because it's revolting, but this is a game. A very high stakes game. Stamping our foot and demanding doesn't cut it. If there is no strategy then there is no win.
I thought the strategy was, to summarize gay Democratic groups, "vote Democrat, get rights, vote Republican, lose them?" Now it looks a bit more like "vote Democrat, sit down and shut up, you're humiliating us."
a lot of dems think clinton lost the congress because the first thing he tried to do was to allow gays in the military.
But "some people say" they're all wet.
But you just have to look at the political terrain right now and see that it's just not going to happen this Congress. I agree, we have a far better chance of passing ENDA (and I think I'll contact my Representative, Jan Schakowsky, office about being a sponsor).
Except that largely-symbolic, substance-free legislation like ENDA isn't even on the Pelosi radar screen.
I'm not gonna get my panties in a wad if they don't tackle DADT right away. Deal with the meaty, significant issues first, while you still possess some capital from the landslide election.
I suppose that the whole "constitutional rights" thing is a piddling, minor issue in comparison to developing socialist medical care, or hiking the minimum wage.
I agree with Pelosi. I think one of the dumbest things Bill Clinton ever did was getting tangled up in this issue right out of the gate. And I agree there are far more pressing issues.
Hmmm, it's a shame that Democrats didn't campaign on this message *before* demanding gay votes.

Keep in mind that DADT is a profoundly unpopular policy with very little civilian support, and the easiest gay-rights issue to "lead with." But when Democrats won thanks to gays, gays were told to get back in the back of the bus -- as usual.


Because the Democratic Party, dear friends, is homophobic. They lied to millions of Americans in their campaign promises -- just to get our cash and votes.

And if they're willing to sell gays down the river after receiving tens of millions of gay votes and gay campaign dollars, how much further are GLBT voters willing to ride the ruinous rapids of "reframing" before they realize they've been had?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Pelosi to Gays: You'll have to wait some more for equality

From The Boston Globe:
Pelosi has also tempered hopes of reversing the "don't ask, don't tell" policy on the service of gays and lesbians in the military, after two key Democrats -- Representatives Martin T. Meehan of Lowell and Barney Frank of Newton -- said last week that they want to repeal the policy.

Though Pelosi believes homosexuals should be able to openly serve, she has made clear that she believes Democrats have more urgent national-security priorities -- including changing course in Iraq and investigating war-related contracting.

Pelosi and Hoyer outlined an agenda yesterday for early next year that Pelosi said will relieve "the middle-class squeeze." It avoids hot-button issues such as tax cuts, gay rights, and abortion for popular issues such as a higher minimum wage, more affordable student loans, and congressional ethics reform.

Like we didn't see that one coming from a mile away.

It's 1992 all over again -- Democrats demand the queer vote, receive it overwhelmingly, then promptly forget who got them into office.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Democrats Speak Out On Gay Marriage

From the popular Democratic Underground forum, Democrats declare their stalwart support for gays and lesbians:

I'm no longer convinced that the democratic party should be fighting this fight because we're trapped--'acceptance' is beyond our power to legislate (we can't force everyone to come to terms with homosexuality) and, for the gay lobby, obtaining legal rights doesn't go far enough. We simply can't win. Moreover, if this has turned into campaign for 'gay acceptance', I'm off the bandwagon. I don't think we should sacrifice vital policy issues like environmental protection, economic justice and universal health care (to name some important issues) by giving the rightwingers this club to bludgeon us with in campaigns any longer. I think we should expunge gay rights

Or not.

It's pretty obvious that Democrats will happily take our money, and votes, but when push comes to shove, "environmental protection" (big government), "economic justice" (income redistribution) and "universal health care" (bureaucrats taking over your health care) are far more important than the Constitutional rights of gays and lesbians.

Don't say we didn't warn you -- and remember, there is another choice.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Our Best Opportunity. . . Ever

The mainstream press is focusing on the election as a rout over Iraq -- especially in the overseas media. And while Iraq was a factor, it wasn't the largest by any means -- it was corruption. Libertarian Party strength in Senate elections, meanwhile, managed to peel off a sizable contingent of homeless libertarian Republicans -- handing the Democrats Senate victories and the margin they needed to win in the Senate (no mention of this, of course, by Democrats).

The tone-deaf far left in the Democratic Party is ecstatic over the wins and are positioning the Democratic Party to push forward profoundly unpopular policies. At the same time, the gay rights vote that the Democratic Party claimed as its birthright is being tossed on the ash heap of recent history.

Recent statements by Hillary Clinton (already blogged about here), dissembling by Democratic apologists in the media (especially the blogosphere), and party leadership commentary have already told gay people that the best we can expect is a half-hearted opposition to super-anti-gay laws proposed by the religious right. You know, the religious right which was just tromped!

What does all this mean? It means we can expect the Democratic Party to race to the left as fast as they can scurry. We can expect an expanded socialist medical system, spending increases (and massive tax increases to "balance the budget"), economic protectionism dragging down our knowledge economy to protect the dying unionized base of the old Democratic coalition, greater central government intervention in education, job-crushing wage regulations, etc.

In short, Democrats are going to give the American people a whole lot of what they DIDN'T vote for -- a slow economy, high taxes, protectionism that will damage our jobs engine, and health-care waiting lines. They aren't likely to give Americans what they DID vote for -- reduced corruption, a real plan on Iraq, commitments to roll back legislation like the USA PATRIOT Act, significant investigations into the conduct of the Bush Administration, or even civil union recognition (though they may pass a token piece of symbolic legislation like ENDA to continue their efforts to pretend they "sacrifice" for GLBT folk).

Now, which party is in the best position to oppose these positions and articulate an America with a strong economy, lower taxes, smaller government, a budget balanced through thrift rather than punitive taxation, free trade, a real commitment to civil liberties in America, a real foreign policy alternative, and a proposal for healthcare (Project Healthy Choice) that will offer lower costs and greater availability?

Not the Republicans. They're busy nursing their wounds and liquidating their libertarian wing, many of whom are coming home to the Libertarian Party.

The answer is us. Only Libertarians will be able to hold the Democrats' feet to the fire on gay rights, the economy, taxes, civil liberties and the role of government. That means not just LP candidates, officeholders and staffers -- it means you and me. Let's take our fantastic election 2006 momentum and continue to make the case for American values -- life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for ALL people.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Massachusetts Marriage Mania

Once again, Massachusetts' legislature has voted against an anti-gay state constitutional amendment. Now, it wasn't done in the fashion that the anti-gay forces wanted -- lawmakers voted to adjourn without considering the amendment rather than voting on the actual amendment itself -- but the overwhelming majority of the democratically elected representatives ended the amendment's run.

However, the homophobic mania about this issue -- from both Democrats and Republicans -- won't die. Astroturfed letters to the editor are demanding that "the people should decide," that the democratic will of voters is being ignored, etc.

Let's step around, for the moment, the clear constitutional position that the equality under the law of various groups of people is not something that should be subject to the popular vote.

A quick review of the history of the proposed amendment itself reveals just how ridiculous the anti-gay crowd have become. The amendment supposedly received almost 2.9% of all Massachusetts residents' signatures to "pass the threshhold." Unfortunately for right wing forces, the media documented widespread fraud in the collection of signatures:

Scenario 1 - Citizens were told they were signing the wine petition when the anti-gay marriage petition was actually presented.

Scenario 2 - Citizens were first asked to sign the wine petition and then asked to sign again on a second page. The second page was actually the anti-gay marriage petition.

Scenario 3 - Citizens were told they were signing a petition to protect gay marriage when it was actually the anti-gay marriage petition.

This practice was so widespread that local television news crews easily captured the fraud on film. Based on the estimates provided by paid signature gatherers, between 50% and 75% of the signatures on the original petition were collected fraudulently.

(Of course, Democrat Attorney General Tom Reilly wasn't too concerned with this, and refused to take a position on the issue beyond "yes, it's happening and it's illegal.")

Now, the same people who defrauded tens of thousands of voters into signing the document are turning around and complaining that a clear rejection by the legislature of their bill represents "contempt of democracy." Right-wing soon-to-be-former Governor Romney has been particularly shrill in his denunciation.

The funniest part, however, has been the proposed remedy the anti-gay forces are cooking up to try and get their fraudulently-balloted amendment to the polls -- they're turning to "activist judges" to force the outcome that they want! Romney and other anti-gay types are threatening to force the issue in federal court.

It's time to recognize these efforts for what they are -- contempt for human rights, wrapped up in "democratic" rhetoric; contempt for the democratic process (including heavy use of out-and-out fraud) while citing "the will of the people"; and an effort to put the constitutional rights of a minority group up to a simple-majority vote-down.

Should the anti-gay Democrats and Republicans in Massachusetts succeed in their mission of forcing the issue on the ballot, a near-certain vote by Massachusetts citizens against their anti-gay measure wouldn't be the end of the crusade either. Another round would be certain, perpetually, until they get the results they want. It's nothing but obsessive dislike for gays which drives these folks.

Thank goodness for the sensibility of the voters of Massachusetts -- and the strong support for equal marriage rights from the Massachusetts Libertarian Party.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A Mid-Term Libertarian Electoral Surge

The Libertarian Party easily had its best election season ever yesterday, with exit polls showing remarkably strong showings by our candidates -- especially in the Southwest. For example, in "red state" Texas, four of our candidates for state Senate received around 20% or more of the vote, with an additional three posting similar results for state House. This, despite the adage that a gay-friendly party like ours cannot post strong results in a supposedly anti-gay state like Texas!

In "blue state" Vermont, all three of our candidates for state House received 12% or more of the vote. This, despite the adage that Vermonters would never accept a small-government message.

In "red state" Wyoming, our candidate for state House of Representatives broke the 20% barrier -- getting close to 22% of the vote, and our Secretary of State candidate hit the 18% mark.

Similar results can be seen in South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Louisiana, Kansas, Idaho, and Arizona -- states as diverse as the US population itself.

So what about federal races? It turns out that the media, as usual, got the story wrong. Races where Libertarian candidates received lots of media coverage saw good returns versus traditional Libertarian balloting in those districts, but our best performances were in areas with grassroots campaigning instead of big media endorsements.

In Texas, Gordon Strickland of Texas grabbed 21.3% of the vote for a seat in the House, Bob Smither won 18.8% of the vote to finish Tom DeLay's term, and Michael Idrogo grabbed 12.6% of the vote. In Texas!

In Arizona, Jason received 26% of the vote for House. In California, Camden McConnell received almost 17%. And the electoral list is peppered with similar performances for House and Senate seats in Indiana and Kentucky too.

Some Libertarian party detractors will claim that this election wasn't good for the party because we didn't win the two high-profile federal races in Texas. They're wrong.

This election shows a broad increase in support for Libertarian candidates across the board. Libertarians receiving double-digit support for national seats in multiple states in a single election year is unheard-of. Libertarians have switched in performance from a party which typically denies Republicans or Democrats a victory by "spoiling" 5% of the vote to a party capable of attracting 15% or more of the vote in key elections across the country on a state and federal level.

This is an *excellent* electoral performance and will position the LP quite well for the 2008 general elections, when the shine has worn off Democrats' promises to undo the predations of the Bush administration. It will also guarantee continued (or new) major-party status in several states.

Thanks and congratulations to the candidates, their volunteers and supporters, LP national and state organizations, and to all of you who voted on Tuesday. Your voice is being heard, loud and clear.

{Edit: Mea culpa on the Texas results -- I undercounted the number of successful candidates due to my bleary-eyed election-night blogging. Mike Nelson indicates, in the comment section, that Libertarians did even better in Texas than I indicated. Even better news for the future of our country!]

Monday, November 06, 2006

Double-Dealing For Democrats

In a rousing editorial for the Advocate, HRC head honcho Joe Solomenese calls for gay Americans to take a stand for our civil rights and vote -- an admirable proposition. He then offers a link to HRC's campaign web page. . . where things start to fall apart.

Legions of Democratic candidates with exciting soundbites present a quick face to the world to show their supposed commitment to gay rights. Bob Casey, Democratic Senate candidate from Pennsylvania, talks about how people should feel accepted for how they are, not how they're told to be.

Just one big problem -- Bob Casey opposes gay marriage.

Tammy Duckworth, Democratic House candidate from Illinois, offers a phrase where she suggests that she doesn't support the military's anti-gay policy.

Just one big problem -- her campaign has reiterated that she is not in favor of repealing DADT as a policy.

But a campaign spokeswoman told the Herald that Duckworth doesn't support the legislation. "I think she only supports a repeal if it was deemed appropriate by military commanders of the armed forces," Christine Glunz said. "The press release is incorrect."


The HRC page then goes on to present a plethora of other candidates, including the token GOP candidate Lincoln Chaffee, and waxes rhapsodic about some pretty unremarkable stances on the issues -- which usually involve some favored legislation but falls short of full equality.

Meanwhile, the Libertarian Party has a host of excellent, unabashedly pro-gay candidates who are polling well and receive short shrift from HRC and similar groups.

Solomonese writes that if everyone gets behind HRC's preferred candidates, "maybe, just maybe, we will finally get the country we deserve."

But surely, we deserve better than this?

Election day is Tuesday, November 7th.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Endorsements and Candidates of Interest

Since our original "Outright Libertarians' Endorsements" blog entry has rolled off of our front page, and my "More Libertarian Candidates" entry is near the bottom, I thought I'd bump to the top of the blog a reminder about which candidates deserve your attention on Tuesday...

Official Endorsements by Outright Libertarians:

  • Philip Berg - US Congress, California District 8

  • Bruce Guthrie - US Senate, Washington

  • Mike Nelson - US Congress, Texas District 5

  • David Schlosser - US Congress, Arizona District 1

  • Starchild - Board of Supervisors, San Francisco, CA
Berg, Nelson, and Starchild are Outright Libertarians members with whom, naturally enough, we found large areas of agreement. Guthrie and Schlosser are running high-profile campaigns with Libertarian solutions to GLBT issues prominently featured through single-issue brochures, gay pride festival appearances, web site mention, etc.

We regret that due to a very aggressive timeline for nominations, some deserving candidates were not able to be considered by our membership. Here are some of them...

Additional Candidates of Interest:

Keep a bookmark on this blog entry -- this list will almost certainly grow as November 7 approaches. If you know of a Libertarian who publicly supports without reservation the LP Platform plank on Sexuality and Gender, as the candidates listed above do, and they're not on this list, please let us know.

[Update: You gotta read the comment Bruce Guthrie added to this post!]

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

They really *are* the same

Dick Cheney, Republican VP Candidate, October 5, 2000, on gay marriage:

I think the fact of the matter, of course, is that matter is regulated by the states. I think different states are likely to come to different conclusions and that's appropriate. I don't think there should necessarily be a federal policy in this area.

Hillary Clinton, Democratic Likely Presidential Candidate, October 26, 2006, on gay marriage:

My position is consistent. I support states making the decision. If you go the next step and say, 'But I want what is called marriage,' you're going to have a problem.

Very few Democrats spoke [for marriage equality and against the anti-gay constitutional amendment], because maybe you thought one way, which is that you want people out there speaking for us. We thought . . . force the Republicans out there, make them look like they're trying to enshrine discrimination in the Constitution.

We all know how lousy the Bush administration has been for the civil rights of gays. Now, six years and millions of dollars in gay campaign contributions and votes later, Democrats are parroting the Bush administration rhetoric on gay marriage and lamely explaining away their refusal to fight for our basic rights. Why should gay families even give Democrats the time of day?

Desperate Democrats, Rabid Republicans, Lucid Libertarians

As the mid-term campaign comes to a close, rabid Republicans and desperate Democrats claw at each other with shallow allegations and negative campaign ads.

Republicans attack Democrats as bin Laden lovers (despite the fact that a Republican administration was his principal client in the 1980s). Democrats retort that Republicans caused the war in Iraq (despite voting for it themselves). Both parties are happy to hang their hats on homophobia.

Now Senator John Kerry is caught up in the latest manufactured crisis. A poorly worded crack at the president is being characterized by desperate GOP campaigners as an "insult to the troops." Kerry and Democrats, who supported the Iraq War, are claiming it's instead a criticism of the Iraq War.

Rather than raging about rhetoric, Libertarians focus on facts. If Bush and the GOP cared about the troops, they would not have sent them into the Iraq quagmire to suffer injury and thousands of deaths. If Kerry and the Democrats cared about the war, they would not have overwhelmingly supported it in the Senate. If either of these issues are important to you, neither old party deserves your vote.

And if either old party cared about "protecting freedom," they's start by adhering to the Constitution -- ceasing their constant attacks on gays and our families.

It's time to end the spin, the shallow campaigning, and the deceit. It's time for more Libertarians in local, state and federal offices across the country. If you care about the future of this country (and how jeopardized it is due to antics like what we're witnessing), go to the Libertarian Party web site and get involved in your local campaign. Many campaigns need funding and get-out-the-vote efforts to put themselves over the top and send a Republicrat home.

I Have A Right To Condemn Your Thriving Marriage. My Failed Marriage, However, Is None Of Your Business!

Persisting in the hypocrisy for which the old political parties are legend, Senator George Allen recently had three of his goons physically assault a liberal critic who asked Allen about his failed first marriage.

Allen, a "family values" conservative, is no stranger to discussing (and condemning) the marriages of others, especially gay people. In reaction to New Jersey's ruling which stated that discrimination against gays in marriage law is unconstitutional, Allen was downright outspoken:
more . . .
I support the marriage amendment, because it will protect the values and views of the people of Virginia from judges who would want to impose their elitist views on us. This is a clear difference between my opponent and me – I support protecting marriage from judges who do not understand their role: to interpret the law, not invent the law.


This amendment does exactly what it says it does; it defines marriage as being between one man and one woman, and I’m for marriage between a man and a woman while my opponent is against it.
Despite Allen's outspoken views on others' marriages (it runs in excess of two paragraphs), he's surprisingly tight-lipped about the sanctity of his own marriage. In fact, he refused to address the public question asked of him and had to instead turn to his ex-wife:
Allen's former wife, Anne Waddell, issued a statement after Tuesday's incident calling Stark's question "a baseless, cheap shot." She said she and Allen divorced more than 22 years ago and, because it was a personal matter, they had the divorce records sealed.

According to a news release from Allen's campaign, Tuesday's incident began when Stark pushed an Allen staffer. "Later, volunteers restrained him and asked to leave the building when he approached the senator a second time, asking inappropriate questions," the release said.
So a divorced heterosexual Senator can seal his divorce records, demand absolute privacy about his personal life and personal matters, dispatch his ex-spouse to decry public inquiries into his marriage life as a "baseless, cheap shot," while ordering his campaign orderlies to "restrain" people who ask "inappropriate questions" in public.

But Allen's public condemnation of hundreds of thousands of committed same-sex couples who, unlike Allen, have remained committed to their relationship vows, is "an important public policy debate."

We would contend that attacks on gay families by someone who skipped town on his own marriage vows -- with an embarrassing divorce apparently so messy he had to have the records sealed -- is perhaps the ultimate in "baseless, cheap shots."

If Senator Allen believes that it's open season on the marriages of people he doesn't like, then he also must by default open up his own private life to public investigation and debate. "Family values Republicans" have no problems with double standards, but we're Libertarians. We believe in common sense, common decency, and common standards that apply to all people.