On Tuesday, May 31, 2011, President Barack Obama stepped down a seldom-trod path in our nation’s history: he celebrated gender equality by pronouncing June — by Presidential Proclamation — Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. Previous presidential actions came from Bill Clinton on June 2, 2000 and President Obama on June 1, 2009 and May 28, 2010.
In his proclamation he wrote,
The story of America’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) community is the story of our fathers and sons, our mothers and daughters, and our friends and neighbors who continue the task of making our country a more perfect Union. It is a story about the struggle to realize the great American promise that all people can live with dignity and fairness under the law. Each June, we commemorate the courageous individuals who have fought to achieve this promise for LGBT Americans, and we rededicate ourselves to the pursuit of equal rights for all, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
He highlighted his administration’s efforts on behalf of LGBT rights
· In December 2010 repeal of the the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) policy, allowing “gay and lesbian Americans…to serve openly in our Armed Forces for the first time in our Nation’s history.”
· Elimination of “discrimination against LGBT Americans in Federal Housing programs.”
· Giving LGBT Americans “the right to visit their loved ones in the hospital.”
· Through executive branch nondiscrimination policies, “discrimination on the basis of gender identity in the Federal workplace will not be tolerated.”
· Nomination and appointment of “highly qualified, openly LGBT individuals to executive branch and judicial positions.”
· Advocacy “of equality around the world” in fighting laws that target LGBT persons
· “Led a global campaign to ensure ‘sexual orientation’ was included in the United Nations resolution on extrajudicial execution – the only United Nations resolution that specifically mentions LGBT people – to send the unequivocal message that no matter where it occurs, state-sanctioned killing of gays and lesbians is indefensible.”
· Mobilization “of unprecedented public commitments from countries around the world to join in the fight against hate and homophobia.”
· Enforcement and implementation of the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act
· “Working to reduce the threat of bullying against young people, including LGBT youth.”
· Administration is “actively engaged with educators and community leaders across America to reduce violence and discrimination in schools.”
· “Hosted the first White House Conference on Bullying Prevention in March.”
· “Reaching out to LGBT youth who have been bullied by recording ‘It Gets Better’ video messages to assure them they are not alone.”
This is quite a list of accomplishments and we tend to lose sight of how historic some of these measures are in our desire for even more dramatic reversals of discriminatory measures. Obviously, not everyone thinks Obama has gone far enough towards redressing the balance but compared to what has come before he – and the country – have made tremendous strides.
The White House Office of Public Engagement also announced “a new landing page, Winning the Future: President Obama and LGBT Americans. This webpage is designed to keep you updated on the President and his Administration steps have taken, and continue to take to benefit the LGBT community.”
And of course, the Christofascist hate machine is working overtime to ramp up the fear and hatred of the LGBT community.
The Family Research Council (FRC) is leading the charge. They say they’re advancing “faith, family, and freedom,” but they have a strange way of advancing the freedom thing. They seem to think where freedom is concerned, less = more. And of course, they take a “slightly” different tact than the president:
Homosexual Agenda — Tuesday, President Obama proclaimed June “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month.” In the Proclamation, he boasts of his administration’s achievements to advance the homosexual agenda.
And it’s not just at home. According to the FRC, the US is leading promoting homosexuality worldwide. And FRC is very upset with Human Rights Campaign too, for its stalwart defense of the Constitution (how dare they!):
Tuesday, homosexual activist Joe Salmonese of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) announced his organization’s “Call it Out” Campaign, a nationwide “effort to expose hatred — not just on national TV, but in communities.” HRC is creating a website where activists can register their accusations and complaints to silence any American who makes a public statement perceived as being “hostile” toward homosexuals or their agenda.
I haven’t actually seen anything about this campaign (not even on the FRC site) but this is an amusing charge, since every fundamentalist-oriented site does essentially the same thing, including FRC itself – that is, after all, exactly the nature of this prayer request – accuse, complain, silence. They just don’t want anyone else to do it. As this is an FRC “prayer target” these hate mongers have added an official prayer request:
Pray that God will protect America from the spiritual effects of this evil Presidential Proclamation. May Christians — who will be targeted by HRC’s smear campaign — enjoy God’s protection. And may this administration’s efforts to promote homosexuality overseas be resisted and defeated at home and abroad!
May God continue to stir the people and legislatures of the individual states to reject federal pressure to support abortion and gay “marriage.” May efforts to overturn Obamacare, homosexual “marriage,” and funding of Planned Parenthood, prevail! (Lev 19:5; Dt 9:5; Ps 110:3; Pr 1:10-16; Jer 20:10-11; Rom 1:32; Gal 6:9).
Nothing like praying for hate. When they get tired of waging war on America’s women, they can always go after the LGBT community. There is no lack of a constructed Other to target when you hate the world as much as these people do. Stay classy, FRC. Way to advance our freedoms…and um…by the way, having seen how you go about advancing freedom, please don’t “advance” mine. this surly old son of Odin doesn’t need that kind of help.