Monday, February 11, 2008

Bi-Partisan Marginalization of Gay People Part 3,491

Outright Libertarians (and indeed, a lot of gay people) often ask a question to self-described "gay friendly" Republicans and Democrats -- if you're so pro-gay, how come your legislative record is so bereft of even token support for equality under the law for LGBTQ people?

For example, why, if Obama and Clinton both support military service equality, haven't they introduced companion legislation to the MREA in the Senate? It's been languishing in the House for quite some time now.

Why, if Arlen Specter and Christopher Dodd are "moderates on gay issues," haven't they done the minimum to pass the UAFA and allow gay Americans to sponsor their foreign partners for residency? Why haven't they at least demanded that the INS amend its rules so that gay Americans get the same partnership sponsor rights as foreign nationals (who can sponsor their same-gender partners for a green card if they themselves get residency in the USA)?

Why, if Nancy Pelosi is so pro-gay, hasn't there been a vote allowed on ending the military's anti-gay ban, or overturning DOMA?

The Democrats (and "pro gay Republicans") tell us it's because they're "too busy" with "more important issues of national implications for us all."

Hat tip to Kip Esquire for this example of crucial bi-partisan legislation that is more vital than your equality under the law:

Sen. Arlen Specter, the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, introduced a bill this week that would allow houses of worship to show football games on big-screen televisions.

The legislation was among a flurry of action taken this week as the result of an article Friday in The Washington Post reporting that churches were canceling Super Bowl parties out of fear of lawsuits from the NFL if they showed the game on jumbo TV screens.


"The legislation simply provides churches with a limited yet justifiable exemption to allow them to bring their congregation together to watch the Super Bowl," Specter (R-Pa.) said in a floor statement when he introduced the legislation Monday. "In a time when our country is divided by war and anxious about a fluctuating economy, these types of events give people a reason to come together in the spirit of camaraderie."

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said that the league is reviewing the bill. Specter is also expected to raise the issue with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell when he meets with him soon to discuss the league's investigation of the spying scandal involving the New England Patriots.

So, for "pro-gay" Republicans and Democrats alike, they're just far too busy working on truly important life-and-death issues like Super Bowl parties, renaming post offices, and testing baseball player urine to spend undue time on minor issues like our constitutional rights.

I suggest that we respond by informing them that we're just too busy ourselves to show up and vote for them and donate to their campaigns -- but we're not too busy to support our friends in the Libertarian Party.