Somebody sound the alarm. It is time my LGBT Brothers and sisters awake from their slumber.
It has not been a pleasant couple weeks for our community since North Carolina in effect branded us second class citizens. In fact it left many of us depressed, wore out and in a shrug your shoulders, roll your eyes kind of mood. We spent countless hours fighting the inevitable tidal wave of bigotry that came our way and still feel the sting of defeat.
However something wonderful happened the day after the Republicans thumbed their collective noses at us (I say Republicans because although there were some from other political persuasions who voted for the Amendment, the Republican Party did so not only out of a warped religious conviction, but for political gain). I digress; now back to something wonderful happening on May 9th.
President Obama declared, “It is important for me personally to go ahead and affirm that same-sex couples should be able to get married.”
As Vice- President Biden would say……That’s a Big Freak’n Deal! Immediately after the President went public, Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney regurgitated the Republican mantra of marriage being between a man and a woman.
This brings me to the meaning of this post. Where is the LGBT community hoopla? Where are the fireworks, the dancing in the streets, the celebrations and the collective jubilee?
For the first time in history a sitting President has declared his personal belief that all humans are created equal and deserve equal treatment and the LGBT community has been virtually silent.
At the very least we need to be jumping on the reelect President Obama bandwagon. If this opportunity passes us by we can kiss any opportunity for equality in the next 4 years goodbye. We can also say goodbye to the repeal of DADT and the implementation of hate crimes legislation, just to name a few.
The public expression of President Obama’s respect and duty to the gay and lesbian community should be met with a resounding legion of volunteer soldiers ready to knock on every door and call every voter on the phone banking sheets to get them out to vote. We should be lining up as though they were giving out free Abercrombie and Fitch T-shirts to register our unregistered LGBT comrades. We need to work as though our lives depend on it, because they literally do!
Instead the rush is to celebrate Pride month the same as always with parades, festivals and dancing the night away at the local gay bar. I don’t mean to belittle or berate. Heck there is nothing wrong with gay pride and attending a rally or festival, but we need to show the same kind of enthusiasm and pride for the President who went out on a very shaky limb for us.
I don’t know about you, but I do not want to wake up on November 7th. and have any regrets. I don’t want to see all the progress on the national front erased and I certainly don’t want to see ultra-right wing judges deciding the LGBT Equality cases that will most likely be going before the courts in the next couple years.
Here is how we repay our President for standing up for us, we stand up for him. He came out of the closet for us and declared his support for equality, now we must come out of the shadows and declare our support for the man who had enough guts to take a risk on a group of individuals that many have written off as fruitcakes, degenerates and at the very least indifferent.
Now is the time to come out of the closets and into the streets. But don’t stop there, come into the Democratic Party head Quarters and the OFA offices and volunteer. Now is the time to register to vote and register your friends and family who support equality as well. Now is the time to go to the festivals and bars and campaign for the President while you socialize. Now is the time to put your money where your mouth is and donate to his reelection campaign. Now is the time to come alive with pride and help erase a little bit of the shame and discouragement we felt after Amendment One.
We may not be able to change the outcome of May 8th, but we can shape the results of November 6th. Come alive my LGBT Brothers and Sisters. Come alive and join me in reelecting the first sitting Pro-Equality President. He stood up for you now it is time for you and I to stand up for him.