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Sullivan Says Gays “Must” Vote For Obama

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Andrew Sullivan’s already established that he’s in political love with Barack Obama. And that love only continues to grow.

Obama’s queer commitment continued yesterday when he appeared at a black church and took on pious people’s homophobia: “I hear people saying things that I don’t think are very Christian with respect to people who are gay and lesbian”. Sullivan says Obama’s statement should prove – once and for all – that he’s meant to be our next president:

To hear someone defend gay and lesbian dignity and equality from a Christian perspective and to do so in the context of a largely African-American crowd, is much, much more than any candidate for the presidency has ever done. It’s a break through. If it were just words, it would be one thing. But he has now done this repeatedly in front of black crowds, when he didn’t have to.

What Obama is doing on the gay issue has the potential transform it and help us as a society to move past it. No, he’s not a savior. No, we shouldn’t expect miracles. No, we should never delegate the work of our equality to anyone else. We, after all, are the ones we’ve been waiting for. But within the Democratic contest, the case for backing Obama at this point in time is, to my mind, urgent, vital, historic.

Gay Americans must not throw this chance away.

So, reader, are you buying it?

By:           Andrew Belonksy
On:           Feb 29, 2008
Tagged: , , , , ,

  • 20 Comments
    • Bitch Republic
      Bitch Republic

      There’s going to be a lot of gnashing of teeth when Obama turns out not to be the Messiah that all of these people have been waiting for.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 1:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ChristopherM
      ChristopherM

      Lawd, Candy Sullivan needs to STFU…we don’t need that blowhard losing Obama any votes!

      Feb 29, 2008 at 1:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • nainainai
      nainainai

      Hey Bitch Republic,

      Ummmm, as others have pointed out before me, the whole “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for” line Obama uses over and over again is the most anti-messianic message you can make. His campaign isn’t about him saving everyone, but him facilitating our own self-salvation. Again, not “Yes I can,” as Hillary is wont to say, but “Yes we can.”

      And look–it’s so MIRACULOUS!!–at what’s been happening: in some counties in Texas, early voting is 10 times the amount it was in 2004; primary attendance is up amongst Democrats all over the country; and Obama is beating Hillary’s top-down machine by mobilizing voters who are reaching out to their neighbors in the first time in their lives and creating a grass-roots movement.

      Obama isn’t our savior, we are.

      Sorry, your argument, implication, cynicism–whatever–holds no water.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 2:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Countervail
      Countervail

      I remember another Democratic candidate who was nearly promising the world to potential gay voters in 1992 and we see where that went.

      THE 1992 CAMPAIGN: Voters; Democrats’ Efforts to Lure Gay Voters Are Persistent but Subtle

      The reality is that candidates can promise anything they want in elections. The telltale sign is when they actually follow through on those promises.

      Given that Senator Obama’s symbolic legislation has predominantly been about prominent African-Americans or African-American causes, I don’t have much to base his rhetoric on (has he elucidated possible GLBT legislation he’d support? Has he supported GLBT legislation in the past?).

      I frankly don’t get the Obamamentum, especially in the GLBT community. What’s so special about what he’s done in the past that gives people any specific reassurances of what he’ll do, or more importantly be able to do, in the future?

      Feb 29, 2008 at 2:20 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jack Jett
      Jack Jett

      Andrew Sullivan supported George W. Bush. He also supported this war. He considers himself a conservative.

      I’d rather take my cues from Carrot Top

      Feb 29, 2008 at 3:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • CCSea
      CCSea

      Obama’s open support for sexual minorities is both principled and politically astute. Why? These days one’s attitude toward homosexuality is a litmus test for young voters. It’s a generational marker. It’s an indication that a candidate “gets it.” Young people in this country will interpret Obama’s openness to gay issues in this light, and it will energize their support.

      This is brilliant, transformational politics. Clinton and McCain have nothing that can match it.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 3:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael Bedwell
      Michael Bedwell

      Well, there’s ONE good thing to say about Sullivan’s roaring hard on er endorsement—we guess he’s stopped believing in the “blacks are genetically more stupid” fake science of Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray whose work he promoted when he was editor of “The New Republic.” But then, technically speaking, Obama is only half-black so maybe that’s why Andy Pandy is willing to give him a pass. As for the credibility of all he’s written about Obama, the HIV+ Mr. Sullivan, years after he was trolling online for bareback sex, effectively declared that “AIDS is over!”

      As for NaiNaiNai’s hysterical blindness—No, no, no!

      “there was something just a wee bit creepy about the mass messianism — “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for” — of the Super Tuesday speech and the recent turn of the Obama campaign. “This time can be different because this campaign for the presidency of the United States of America is different. It’s different not because of me. It’s different because of you.” That is not just maddeningly vague but also disingenuous: the campaign is entirely about Obama and his ability to inspire. Rather than focusing on any specific issue or cause — other than an amorphous desire for change — the message is becoming dangerously self-referential. The Obama campaign all too often is about how wonderful the Obama campaign is.” – frequent Hillary basher Joe Klein at “Newsweek.”

      “Dr Sean Wilentz, a Princeton historian and stern critic of the current administration of George W.Bush, said: “What’s troubling about the campaign is that it’s gone beyond hope and change to redemption.” At the campaign’s “Camp Obama” – a training programme run ahead of primaries in key states – volunteers are schooled to avoid talking to voters about policy, and instead tell of how they “came” to Obama, just as born-again Christians talk about “coming to Jesus.” New York Times columnist David Brooks wrote: “Obama’s people are so taken with their messiah that soon they’ll be selling flowers at airports and arranging mass weddings.” – London Telegraph

      “At an early-morning rally the day of the New Hampshire vote, [Obama] told some 300 students at the Dartmouth College gym: ‘My job this morning is to be so persuasive . . . THAT A LIGHT WILL SHINE THROUGH THAT WINDOW, A BEAM OF LIGHT WILL COME DOWN UPON YOU, YOU WILL EXPERIENCE AN EPIPHANY, and you will suddenly realize that you must go to the polls and vote for Barack.’” – Nat Hentoff, Village Voice.

      “THE CAMPAIGN WORKS HARD TO CULTIVATE THE ROCK STAR IMAGE. After he’s introduced, Obama routinely waits about 30 seconds to enter the arena. The excitement grows, until his entrance is perfectly timed with the soaring chords of U2′s “City Of BLINDING LIGHTS.” – Politico

      “The other day a Texas crowd CHEERED HIS SNEEZE.” – NY Times.

      “Barack Obama is a METAPHYSICAL FORCE in American politics.” – Donna Brazile, Democratic Party Big Cheese, superdelegate, and Obama hagiographer.

      “I felt this thrill going up my leg. … This is the NEW TESTAMENT.” – MSNBC Superstar Chris Matthews

      “I just want all of you to pray that I CAN BE AN INSTRUMENT OF GOD…. I am confident that WE CAN CREATE A KINGDOM RIGHT HERE ON EARTH.” – Barack Obama

      “If Barack Obama makes it all the way to the White House, it will represent A QUANTUM LEAP IN AMERICAN CONSCIOUSNESS” – Deepak Chopra

      “We’re here to EVOLVE TO A HIGHER PLANE.” – Oprah Winfrey

      “I’ll do whatever he says to do. I’ll collect paper cups off the ground to make his pathway clear.” – actress Halle Berry

      “The atmosphere at his events is such that one wonders if OBAMA IS ABOUT TO WALK OUT WITH A BASKET WITH SOME LOAVES AND FISHES TO FEED THE THOUSANDS.” – “The Australian” correspondent Geoff Elliott

      “‘I think that OBAMA, his election to the Senate, WAS DIVINELY ORDERED’, Mr. Rush said, all other explanations failing. ‘I’m a preacher and a pastor; I KNOW THAT THAT WAS GOD’S PLAN. Obama has certain qualities that—I think he is being used for some purpose. I really believe that.’” – Rep. Bobby Rush, D-Ill., as quoted by Janny Scott in the Sept. 9 New York Times

      “I walked outside and found five hundred people standing on the sidewalk and the front steps of the opera house, LISTENING TO HIS LAST WORDS IN SILENCE, AS IF NEWS OF VICTORY IN THE PACIFIC WERE COMING OVER THE LOUDSPEAKERS. Within minutes, I couldn’t recall a single thing that he had said, and THE SPEECH DISSOLVED INTO PURE FEELING, which stayed with me for days.” – George Packer, The New Yorker

      “Fifteen-thousand people, maybe 20,000, jam into the streets in front of the soaring State Capitol, with the usual OBAMA-AS-ELECTORAL-RAVE GIDDINESS. … a band PLAYS “OBAMA-ALUJAH” and thousands stand in the chill night READY TO BE RAPTUROUS. . . . They were awaiting THE MESSIANIC FIGURE of a presidential candidate who had just added two more wins to his victory column and who the night before had ignited a crowd of about 20,000 in Houston. …”If I died today, it would be all right,” [activist Ray] Williams told me…Obama basked in the outpouring of affection as his followers stood in awe of the man whom they had waited so long to behold. He was well into his speech when he thought to remind the crowd that it was ALL RIGHT FOR THEM TO SIT DOWN as he delivered the rest of his comments. Some have made fun of his charismatic nature, inspirational tone and continual reference to hope. Many wonder if that WONDERMENT AND GLORIFIED EXUBERANCE can last through the rest of the campaign. Well, based on what I saw, this movement won’t peak until November.” – Bob Ray Sanders, Star Telegram February 24, 2008.

      “OBAMA: Keep me in your prayers. You know, make sure that everybody is praying and GIVE ME THAT PROTECTIVE BLANKET over it.
      WRIGHT: Obama’s true believers respond as though they’ve spent their whole lives out in the cold. AT RALLY AFTER RALLY, A FEW PEOPLE LITERALLY FAINT.
      OBAMA: [Montage of Obama reacting to fainting]: Is somebody okay? Did somebody just get faint? It looks like we have somebody who may have fainted. Hold on a second, young lady. Are you okay? Why don’t you sit down though.
      WRIGHT: Politics doesn’t even begin to describe it. A VISIT TO AN OBAMA RALLY IS A PILGRIMAGE.” – ABC Nightline Correspondent David Wright

      “Then Mr Obama took to the stage. The noise was deafening, a long, exultant roar with all the force and overwhelming power of a jet engine before take-off. “Obama! Obama! Obama! Obamaaaaaaaaa!” they chanted From four giant screens hanging from the ceiling, Mr Obama’s image could be seen from the farthest reaches of the stadium, waving, clapping at this adoring crowd, as THEY STARED UP AT HIM WITH AN ALMOST MESMERIC FERVOUR. At one point in his speech, delivered in the religious cadence of Dr King, Mr Obama had to blow his nose. “OBAMA!” THEY CHANTED AND CLAPPED AGAIN, AS THEIR IDOL WIPED HIS FACE.” – Tim Reid, The Times [UK] February 23, 2008.

      “The Obama Messiah Watch” by Timothy Noah, Slate. “Introducing a periodic feature considering evidence that Obama is the Son of God. Is Barack Obama the second coming of our Savior and our Redeemer, Prince of Peace and King of Kings, Jesus Christ? His press coverage suggests we can’t dismiss this possibility out of hand. I therefore inaugurate the Obama Messiah Watch, which will periodically highlight gratuitously adoring biographical details that appear in newspaper, television, and magazine profiles of this otherworldly presence in our midst. Readers are invited to submit similar details—Obama walking on water, Obama sating the hunger of 5,000 with five loaves and two fishes—from other Obama profiles. And also, of course, to repent, just in case the hour approacheth nigh.

      DUG JAZZ WHEN HE WAS STILL A MIDDLE SCHOOLER!!! …from a Feb. 8 profile in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin by B.J. Reyes. …Reyes’ scoop? “Barry” (as he was then known) became a jazz buff WHILE STILL IN JUNIOR HIGH! …Reyes is a little vague about precisely what jazz records Barry would listen to at that tender age. … In the unlikely event Barry was grooving on Ornette Coleman’s The Shape of Jazz to Come or Albert Ayler’s Spiritual Unity, then dig it, baby. This cat’s the messiah.

      TOOK VERY FEW NOTES IN CLASS!!!…from a Los Angeles Times profile by Larry Gordon about Obama’s two years at Occidental College …[classmate Ken] Sulzer said he was impressed at HOW FEW NOTES OBAMA TOOK!

      …MASTERED LAWS GOVERNING UNIVERSE!!! ..,from a Jan. 27 Associated Press feature by Glen Johnson: Obama analyzed and integrated Einstein’s theory of relativity, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, as well as the concept of curved space as an alternative to gravity, for a [Harvard] Law Review article that [Prof. Laurence] Tribe wrote titled, “The Curvature of Constitutional Space.” BY THIS MEASURE, THOUSANDS OF REASONABLY BRIGHT HIGH-SCHOOL STUDENTS ACROSS THE UNITED STATES ARE DESTINED TO BECOME PRESIDENT. (AP’s Johnson gets extra credit for redundancy: Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity includes the concept of curved space.)

      DO SPACE ALIENS ADVISE OBAMA? … a Rolling Stone profile by Ben Wallace-Wells: ‘[Obama] is sitting in his Senate office, dangling one leg over the other knee and speaking very, very slowly. It’s not just that Obama searches for the right word; it’s that the search seems to TAKE HIM TO DISTANT WORLDS.’ Wallace-Wells doesn’t flat-out say so, but the implication is that OBAMA IS IN TELEPATHIC COMMUNICATION WITH SPACE ALIENS in distant galaxies whose vastly superior intelligence enables them to game the maddeningly compressed new primary calendar. This is just the sort of thing you’d expect THE MESSIAH TO DO.

      OBAMA CALMS TURBULENT IOWANS!!! ‘Paul Tewes, Obama’s Iowa coordinator, marveled, “It is something I’ve never seen before in politics. AFTER PEOPLE HEAR HIM SPEAK, THEY SAY THAT THEY FEEL AT PEACE.’ Does Tewes’ unusual choice of words demonstrate that OBAMA IS THE PRINCE OF PEACE? Just asking.

      OBAMA: BETTER THAN CIVIL RIGHTS!!! Stuart Taylor Jr. of National Journal: ‘[I]t is beyond debate that an Obama win in 2008 would be by far the best thing that has happened to African-Americans, and to race relations, in MORE THAN 50 YEARS.’ This is a remarkable statement because nearly all the achievements of the 20th-century civil rights movement occurred WITHIN the last 50 years. “

      “[Obama] has run on the vague promise of “change,” but on issue after issue—immigration, the economy, global warming—he has offered boilerplate policies that EVADE THE UNDERLYING CAUSES OF THE STALEMATES. THESE ISSUES REMAIN CONTENTIOUS BECAUSE THEY INVOLVE REAL CONFLICTS OR DIFFERENCES OF OPINION. …He seems to have HYPNOTIZED MUCH OF THE MEDIA AND THE PUBLIC with his eloquence and the symbolism of his life story. The result is A MASS DELUSION that Obama is forthrightly engaging the nation’s major problems when, so far, he isn’t” – Robert Samuelson, Newsweek

      “There is something of A CULT OF PERSONALITY surrounding Obama. Despite a lack of a presidential résumé and a vision for leadership that’s remarkably short on specifics, HE’S MANAGED TO CONVINCE A WIDE SWATH OF PEOPLE THAT HE’S GOING TO CURE ALL THE ILLS OF OUR POLITICAL SYSTEM. That’s especially ironic given that much of his support is among the well educated and affluent, who are supposed to be more rational. “ – James Joyner, Newsweek

      More at:

      http://obamamessiah.blogspot.com/

      Feb 29, 2008 at 3:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hisurfer
      hisurfer

      What the fuck is going on with our country?

      Out here, people like Obama, but there’s nothing like this. He’s just a local boy who made it big. There’s certainly no messianic fervor. Is this really what’s going on in the mainland, or is it more a matter of exaggerated reporting and on-line hyperbole?

      Feb 29, 2008 at 4:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jk
      jk

      Obama is the one candidate in this race that can change the way America looks at gays and issues of gay rights. As the report from Beaumont indicates, Obama felt a hostility to gay rights from the audience, and pushed back. Do you ever think Clinton would do that? I doubt it. And McCain wouldn’t mention gay issues in the first place.

      As the earlier commenter noted, it’s a generational thing. Obama “gets” it. The only way past the politics of gay-baiting is through it, and Obama gives us that opportunity. With Clinton, support on gay issues will always seem defensive. Obama–as he did in Beaumont, and numerous other places–is playing offense.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 4:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Countervail
      Countervail

      Hisurfer, it truly is this way with some people.

      I have one friend who has drunk the Obama kool-aid. We get into ridiculous arguments because I don’t seem to “get” Obama like he does. And when I explain that I can have civilized discussions disagreeing about Obama with other people, he derides them. And these are people that support Obama.

      The reality is that Obama is more to the left than most Democrats, more to the left than most of the country. And while with the next election we may have a stronger Democratic presence in Congress, the remaining Republicans and the mainstream public will fight all the harder to block any significant legislation. Am I wrong in thinking it could only be four more years of modest progress at best? What’s the basis for anyone thinking that Obama somehow has an easy road ahead to further his agenda.

      And if we do have an Obama/McCain matchup in the general election, does anyone have any doubt that Republicans will fail to capitalize on McCain being more centrist than Obama? I personally think that if it comes down to an Obama/McCain matchup, a Democratic White House becomes less of a foregone conclusion. A good portion of the country could be brought around to eventually support Clinton, I think though the more people know about Obama, the less they will want to see his agenda enacted.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 4:57 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • nainainai
      nainainai

      @7

      Michael,

      Sure I used some hyperbole, but it was to make a very pragmatic point: Obama’s campaign message is as much about grassroots organizing as it is about soaring rhetoric. BY being inspiring, he has been able to build a very real, very powerful movement.

      It’s nice that the media thinks he’s being advised by space aliens (?!?), but when you look at the nuts and bolts of his campaign, it has been built on getting people organized and getting them out to vote. Volunteerism, grass roots organizing, and civic responsibility are not pie-in-the-sky political methods, they’re actually pragmatic methods of building a winning coalition. Senator Obama’s popularity is not a mark against him, no matter how cool and iconoclastic it may feel to pooh pooh his campaign–it’s a social fact. It’s allowed him to raise the kind of money that will help him to beat John McCain, and it will help him to build the get-out-the-vote operation that will build a sustained Democratic majority.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 5:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Bitch Republic
      Bitch Republic

      Adolf Hitler built a similar, real, powerful movement to mobilize the people of Germany, too. This Obama cult of personality is scary.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 5:37 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Robert
      Robert

      I don’t really buy it. I mean, I’m sure he’ll do what he can to advance queer rights–more than ANY Republican would. But I’m still disturbed by his open letter:

      “Just as important, I have been listening to what all Americans have to say. I will never compromise on my commitment to equal rights for all LGBT Americans. But neither will I close my ears to the voices of those who still need to be convinced. That is the work we must do to move forward together.”

      He’ll never compromise…but he’ll still listen to the neocons?

      In a matter like this, there is no compromise. If you have to beat Republicans to advance queer rights (human rights) than that’s what you do. You don’t chitchat about how everyone should work together.

      That sounds like compromise to me.

      Feb 29, 2008 at 8:04 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • mike
      mike

      i’m sorry…anyone who compares obama to hitler is a douche. a total douche. really, very, seriously…douchey…and not like a vinegar and water douche because that is FAR too natural a douching solution. i’m talking douchey like those shite ones that have iodine, phosphates and anti-microbial solvents.

      you are a total douche

      Feb 29, 2008 at 8:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Pinky Bear
      Pinky Bear

      Andrew Sullivan is certainly not my “Gay Role Model.” He loved Bush a lot, too, at one point. Sullivan is one of those types who are either at your feet or at your throat. Why doesn’t that Republican Log Cabiner sit on a Prep H suppository and shut up?

      Mar 1, 2008 at 12:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Joe
      Joe

      Obama refused to have a photo taken with Gavin Newsom because he did not want to be associated with that whole gay marriage thing…telling.

      Mar 1, 2008 at 1:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Better the Devil you know
      Better the Devil you know

      The LGBT Community seems to forget that Obama has already snubbed the few Politicians that have already supported our community.

      The other major sticking points on Obama for me are:
      1) His shady dealings with unsavory Chicago underworld.
      2) His poor voting record.
      3) His lack of experience.

      The Gay, liberal, and popular media all have such a huge hard on for Obama. Why do they feel we won’t read everything that’s available? I find myself moving further to the Republican party, solely because of the lie and spinning that occurs.

      I would sooner vote for McCain than have four years of Obama double talk.

      Mar 3, 2008 at 9:14 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dan
      Dan

      The Obama schtick is sickening to me. I just do not get it. It’s like Jim Jones or something. His followers are devoted, and cannot give a rational reason to support him that anybody of a more moderate or conservative persuasion would actually buy except “He’s a good, honest guy.”

      Well, the last time we elected somebody who appeared to be a “Good, honest guy” we got Dubya. It is a disaster to pick people based on anything but policy/politics. Cults of personality, like the one Obama has created, might…God forbid…get you 4 years in the White House, and maybe…if you can scare people enough…then you can get 4 more. Please. Give me a candidate with substance any day.

      As to Sullivan’s belief, well, his Obamania became so choking, and his loathing for two candidates I think would make actual policy choices made me stop reading him. Sullivan is a bloviating idiot who has nothing better to do than listen to himself talk. The infatuation with Obama will wear off before the General Election, and we’ll be getting 4 years of McCain, and his whackjob-conservative VP that he’ll need to win the GOP base.

      Mar 3, 2008 at 4:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • James
      James

      BR,

      Mmmmmm. Obama is now Hitler? :-) No hyperbole at all in that sentence, huh?

      Mar 3, 2008 at 5:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • fredo777
      fredo777

      Correction: Bush never came across as a “good, honest guy” in my opinion, esp. following all the speculation during his initial election.

      Mar 3, 2008 at 6:24 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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