Monday, February 29, 2016

It's not a contest - It's a bare knuckle fight

Waiting for equality
LGBT American citizens have not yet won the so-called “culture war.” Achieving national marriage equality was a giant step forward but we have a long way to go before we achieve true Equal Protection. As HRC reminds us, we can marry on Sunday and be fired on Monday for having done so.

What is most disturbing is the certain knowledge that there are LGBT children with fragile egos in places like Alabama, Florida and Georgia. These kids are hearing a terrible message every day. Sadly the transmitters are sometimes  ignorant parents. The message is that they are evil little perverts who don't deserve the same fair treatment as others. Eventually these innocent kids believe the bullshit.

The messages originate with people like Roy Moore and John Stemberger. They and many of the haters are part of the establishment and they have very loud microphones. Roy Moore is Alabama's chief justice. You cannot get more establishment than that. Marco Rubio had no problem addressing an event organized by Stemberger's Florida Family Policy Council honoring Mat Staver, head of Liberty Counsel.

Marco Rubio with Mat Staver
Liberty Counsel is a designated hate group. Florida Family Policy Council should be. Rubio burnished some Christian creds at our expense. It is no secret that the Republican Party has a symbiotic relationship with fundamentalist Christians and their organizations.

Kim Davis
Only a Republican could have made a hero of Kim Davis. Davis, an elected official, decided that her Christian deity required her to frustrate the constitutional rights of gay citizens and taxpayers rather than resign. She was lionized for defying the order of a federal court. Suggesting that a decision of the Supreme Court of the United States does not constitute the law of the land is insane. But the GOPers have done just that.

Mike Huckabee, someone who proffers some of the most revolting views of gay citizens, is being hotly pursued for his presidential endorsement. Huckabee appeared on Morning Joe today. Huckabee is no better than David Duke. Yet it remains permissible in polite society to express anti-LGBT bigotry — and still be invited for a chat on MSNBC.

Mike Huckabee
And it is not like these good Christians have any answers. Perhaps Mika Brzezinski could have asked Huckabee what he expects gay people to do. According to the fundamentalist Christians gay people should either be reoriented to heterosexuality or celibate. Given the realities of so-called reparative therapy gays are apparently supposed to be eunuchs to appease the fundamentalists' angry diety (their god is always pissed off). Explain that to a gay teen.

I cannot begin to imagine what they tell their own children if one of them happens to be gay. But we do know some of what they tell their kids because it shows up as bullying at school. The actual bullies are less responsible than their ignorant parents. Again, they have no answers. According to them, anti-bullying programs “promote homosexuality.” Sure. Meanwhile, promoting Christianity, to the exclusion of all other religions, is perfectly acceptable. Their America looks a lot like Iran.

I believe in those queer kids. One of them could be the next Tim Cook. If they believe in themselves they can be anything that they want to be. To give them fair chance we have much to do to ensure that gays have equal employment opportunity in all 50 states. Having to hide your sexuality takes a toll. I know because I have been there.

The most important thing that we can do this year is to vote and to make sure that our friends and family vote. One of the first things that Hillary Clinton did at State was to author an inclusive equal opportunity policy. Would any GOPer have done that? The thought of one of these Republican maniacs becoming president is horrific. Cruz is batshit crazy, Rubio is stupid and Trump is less qualified than Cheez Whiz.

I suspect that we are in for one of the most ugly and negative campaigns in American history. Their objective is to diminish the vote. The calculus is simple. If the turnout is light, they win. Heavy turnout means that we win. That gay kid in Alabama needs a president who is a dependable friend regardless of the politics.

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