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.