Archive for the ‘National Equality March’ Category

>Back from DC in an activist frame of mind

October 15, 2009

>Having just returned from a protest march in which 200,000 gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans marched for equal rights, with the profound reminders of similar protests in view everywhere you go in Washington (the Mall, the Wall, the Lincoln Memorial), I’m still in an activist frame of mind.

For my first two reports on the march, including a slide show and Lady Gaga, visit here and here.

Tens of thousands of young people took part in this march, and among the young it doesn’t matter if one is gay or straight, they just want equality.

When I was growing up, some of us wanted equality, too, and inequality at the time was defined along racial lines. Racial differences are obvious, and young people today are growing up without the racial prejudices so many of us older people were surrounded by. Many older people who hold animosity toward gays do so as a hold over from the way they or their peers felt about those of other races when they were young.

So when it comes to sexual differences, young people don’t have that prejudiced background that they can transfer to the GLBT community.

And here’s another comparison between the older generation and the younger one. The signs at Glenn Beck’s 9-12 rally, attended mostly by older people, were negative, racist and hateful. The signs at the National Equality March, attended mostly by young people, were peaceful and uplifting.

“It’s not about who you love, it’s about do you love,” the sign reads.

Last night on PBS, American Masters featured Joan Baez followed by Pete Seegar. Nothing gets an old hippie charged up like hearing those two sing again.

The Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington sang several of the same songs that Pete Seegar was known for.

Equality is coming, there is no doubt.

>Western Tribune column October 7, 2009 GLBT Equality

October 7, 2009

>Be sure to read my report on NFL players supporting gay equality on Examiner.

This is my column from today’s Western Tribune. Is this the most “gay equality promoting” column ever printed in an Alabama newspaper by a regular columnist? Maybe.

Western Tribune October 7, 2009

I’ve had a good laugh all week after reading another letter in this paper. The phrase “gay or lesbian homosexuals” caught my eye.

As a knowledgeable gay person it made me wonder who the letter writer was referring to. I didn’t know there were any homosexuals who are not gay or lesbian.

This is Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) History Month and this weekend tens of thousands of people are expected in the nation’s capital to march for equality. This will be the fifth national rally for gay equality, prior marches having taken place in 1979, 1987, 1993, and 2000.

The first protest in Washington DC for gay rights was in 1965 when about ten local men and women picketed with signs in front of the White House after several were fired from federal positions for being gay or lesbian.

But the most notable political rally in Washington was probably the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom during which Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech.

Just as the political climate was right in 1963 for national progress on civil rights, the leaders in Washington today all support GLBT equality. In some ways, this march is a celebration of what we expect to come, but more so it is a reminder to those leaders to get on the ball.

Recently Congressman John Lewis was the keynote speaker at Equality Weekend in Birmingham. He recounted some of his personal history in the struggle for civil rights, including being injured here in Alabama, his home state. He equated the fight for GLBT equality to the fight for civil rights. “You cannot wait. You cannot be patient. You want your freedom and you want it now,” he said.

He also said it is not the business of the state or federal government to regulate who should marry whom. One day, he said, we will look back and laugh at ourselves because “the stars didn’t fall over Alabama because people fell in love and got married.”

NAACP chairman Julian Bond has endorsed this march and will be one of the speakers. “GLBT rights are civil rights; there are no ‘special rights’ in America. Everyone has rights – or should have – and I am happy to join in this battle for justice and fairness,” he explained.

Full equality, as guaranteed by the Constitution, is all we ask.

>Comedy among the pols

September 22, 2009

>On my site I’ve posted an open letter explaining Why marching in Washington is important. Please feel free to forward the link or the letter to those you know.

Who knew that Congressman Barney Frank was such a comedian. He appeared on Jay Leno’s 10 @ 10 last night. Rush Limbaugh deserved this.

And President Barack Obama showed his lighter side as well, on Letterman. (Sorry about the ads)

OK, I agree, the president was black before the election (and still is), but remember, 30 or 40 percent of people didn’t vote for him, and it’s from those people that the vocal racists are emerging.

My column in tomorrow’s Western Tribune gives three reasons we need to support the public option in health care. Here’s a clue, one of them has to do with Jesus.