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When Obama Signs the Matthew Shepard Act, Here’s What Won’t Change

Shepard, Judy and Obama, Barack (Oval Office)

It’ll be a lovely day in Washington when President Barack Obama signs the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010. We’re looking at low 70s with light wind and plenty of sunshine. You might care about Obama’s signature because the bill includes the Matthew Shepard Act. But for all the hubbub over finally enacting hate crimes legislation that includes LGBTs, it’s not like the law is actually going to change anything.

Just because the feds can now join hate crimes investigations, is the White House going to start instructing its minions to jump into the fray? LOLZ, yo! Not even the Human Rights Campaign, which has been pushing for this law, thinks so. Says the org’s lobbyist David Stacy: “Are there going to be a huge number of prosecutions by the federal government, by the Justice Department, under this statute? No.” (Worth remembering: Once upon a time, HRC supported ENDA even though it didn’t include trans-protections.)

So what will change? Local and state officials can begin requesting cash from the feds to use in hate crimes investigations — though there’s no guarantee DoJ will sign off on the expenses. (One unnamed DoJ official that NPR quotes, however, says, “This law is going to be used extensively.”)

But here’s the big change you can expect: An increase in reports of hate crimes. “If you’re an individual who’s been the victim of a crime, why would you bother to report that you’d been the victim of a hate crime unless you thought that law enforcement officials were going to take it seriously?” asks the Anti-Defamation League’s Washington counsel Michael Lieberman (and co-chair of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights hate crime task force.) “After an effective hate crime law has been passed, the numbers actually may go up. And that may be a very good thing, because it’s a much more accurate reflection of the national problem.”

Or, as the American Family Association will surely point out, the rise in reports will just be the homosexuals’ means of exploiting a law to promote their own agenda! Sneaky assault victims.

(But you know what our favorite part of today’s signing will be? Because it’s really a Pentagon bill that’s being approved, Defense Sec. Robert Gates — who oversees the discrimination of thousands of gay servicemen and women — will be by Obama’s side. As he approves protections for the gays!)

By:           editor editor
On:           Oct 28, 2009
Tagged: , , , , , ,

  • 130 Comments
    • YCKTR
      YCKTR

      Ummm…one word…precedent. No, it’s not going to rain cosmos and sequins, but it’s sure as HELL going to streamline further efforts.

      While it’s fun (and easy) to sit back and poke holes in the efforts of others…it’s irresponsible (and not particularly interesting) to ignore the larger discussion.

      !

      Oct 28, 2009 at 11:57 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • AlanInUtah
      AlanInUtah

      So does this mean that once signed, anyone who serves in the military and is attacked by fellow service people because of suspicion of being gay can report the incident as a hate crime without being thrown out?

      Oct 28, 2009 at 12:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      Seriously, QUEERTY, give some credit where credit is due. You know how hard it is to pass anything pro-gay through congress? They got it done, it’s incremental, so stop bashing the progress. I think we can all agree that passing the Matthew Shephard Act is better than NOT passing the Matthew Shephard Act.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 12:42 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ YCKTR:

      You said: “. . . it’s sure as HELL going to streamline further efforts.”

      Hows that? How is this symbolic gesture going to change minds about DADT and DOMA? The Senate didn’t pass this new law – they approved a Bill for defense spending.

      This is the first law ever passed that even references LGBT and you’re suggesting what? a Trend?

      Two-thirds of the US Senate is Anti-LGBT. This law made it through by attaching it to the defense spending bill. That’s not progress – it’s clever, maybe even a bit crafty, but it’s not progress.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 12:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • wondermann
      wondermann

      This is silly, but it’s Queerty, the bitter cousin of gay media.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 1:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • YCKTR
      YCKTR

      @Andrew

      This is the first law ever passed that even references LGBT and you’re suggesting what? a Trend?

      —-snip—-

      Ummm..yeah, Andrew that’s how the law works…or didn’t you know? Once a legal decision is on the books, it can be referenced to promote to newer laws. Precedant my friend, is how federal systems of law work.

      You and I obviously have different ideas of what constitutes progress. When a law is enacted to protect a minority group with ZERO legal protection, I don’t care if it’s attached to Dubya’s ass…it’s progress my friend.

      !

      Oct 28, 2009 at 1:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Fitz
      Fitz

      One more thing that wont change:
      Querty’s ability to take the pessimistic victim stance in every thing he does.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 2:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      The law is about “punishing bad behavior,” it does absolutely nothing to make us more “equal.” It turns us into a “protected class,” which is, by its definition, even further from “equal.”

      The goal is “equality,” not being a minority, having protected status. A “special class” is not “same” or “equal.” Equality means we become the same as everyone else.

      The mostly “symbolic” nature of the Hate Crimes Law doesn’t change any minds and doesn’t re-define LGBT people.

      You are clearly enamored with the game of politics. That’s fine – many are. But, some of us realize laws don’t create equality.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 2:20 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Keith Kimmel
      Keith Kimmel

      Queerty is right. It likely will not change anything in MOST cases. I have not had the time to read the actual legislation. Does it even include enhanced penalties, or does it just give federal LEOs jurisdiction? If the latter is the case, the only times this will be useful is when local law enforcement refuses to run a meaningful investigation, public pressure can be put on the feds to take over the investigation.

      Sean Kennedy’s killer got 3 years for his hate crime, which the ignorant South Carolina (?) District Attorney’s office charged as something other than 1st degree murder. Then the DOC tried to let him out early for good behavior, until the press got the wind of it and flooded the parole board’s office with phone calls (yes, I was one of those calls). Until there are enhanced penalties that take care of situations like this and forbid light sentences for hate crimes and don’t give biased prosecutors and bigot judges in small towns the power to enforce their prejudices on the cases, we truly have not won anything.

      Its good and great that the Matthew Shepard Act got passed and will be signed. It is a victory. But our work is far from over. Obama’s recent speeches are more full of shit than North Vietnam’s state-run media, which according to them, victory is just around the corner in the civil war. I think alot of people are seeing some of these bills signed and say “Great, we won. Time to pack up, go home, the show is over.” As a result, charitable giving to our advocacy organizations will decrease. On top of this, there is the split between old-school slow and steady advocacy “establishment” and the younger generation. Don’t underestimate this, our community is about to be fractured and we are going to see some serious infighting and unproductive bitching.

      We are in for a long road ahead. People who think we’ve won or that victory is just around the corner are gonna be in for a rude awakening.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 2:42 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andres
      Andres

      @AlanInUtah, no, because military members (and their families) are governed by the UCMJ; military law, not civil and criminal law. The Matthew Shepard Act even includes an explicit exemption for the military.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 2:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jt
      jt

      A hate crimes bill won’t deter gay bashing any more than laws for murder deter murderers. A gay basher isn’t going to say “WAIT! Obama signed Judy Shephards bill”! The only thing it will serve is that it will make Judy Shephard and the gay liberals “feel” good.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 3:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sidney
      Sidney

      Queerty!

      Ok…you seriously need to calm down and give the man credit.

      Whats next, he gets rid or DADT are you gonna say, “Its too little, too late”

      ENDA happens. Will you be like, “Well he didn’t really want to”

      I am a fan of your site but you seriously do this after everytime the government does give us something.

      Is it everything we want? HELL NO! There is so much more we need…

      but for right now, be happy that we have this moment to celebrate, cause if another Republican had won, we wouldn’t even be close to this. We can go back to being on the governments ass about giving us what is rightfully ours, but he signed the bill into law and it is something we’ve wanted.

      This is a time for celebration not pessimism.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 3:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • YCKTR
      YCKTR

      @Andrew

      What have YOU done to further equality lately?

      Instead of whining like a 4 year old that didn’t get EXACTLY what he ORDERED for Xmas, get off your ass and push for the sort of (carefully worded) legislation YOU believe in – write letters, make some calls, attend a lobby day, organize a grass roots effort…whatever works for you.

      But PLEASEdo NOT just sit there throwing darts at the the achievements of others. Thats just lame.

      !

      Oct 28, 2009 at 3:42 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers
      The Gay Numbers

      Y is mostly correct. However, precedent is too strong a word since that would be something like a ruling by the Supreme Court that gays are a protected class. What it does do is create persuasive evidence of this. A lawyer going to court to argue that gays should marry, for example, can now argue “see here’s a law that treats gays as a protected under the law, and that should persuade you that as a protected class (one of the necessary elements to equal protection analysis) gays should be subject to heightened scrutiny when laws are written about them such as marriage bans.” If the court is ever persuaded by such an argument (and this increases the chances that they would be), that would kill every anti-law in the country is swoop. Now, each incident may need litigation, but the overall shift in the law to give us the same status as the Hate Crimes Bill does would be a 10 on the legal earth quake scale. By the way, if you want to understand why this is true- look at the groups that already protected under hate crimes laws- race, nationality, ethnic background, gender, as I remember. That should tell you something about what being categorized as a protected class means under the law in America.

      On a side note, I really wish non-lawyers would not discuss these issues. I barely understand it, and I have a law degree.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 4:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      @Andrew

      You say that laws don’t create equality? It may be true that the passage of a law does not IMMEDIATELY result in equality. But try telling black people that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (which says that private employers cannot discriminate on the basis of race) or the Voting Rights Act didn’t do a hell of a lot towards achieving equality for African-Americans.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 4:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • wondermann
      wondermann

      YCKTR you are right and on point

      Oct 28, 2009 at 4:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • drewbrown
      drewbrown

      I wish Queerty would publish the names of the authors of each of its articles. I think it would discourage some of this petulant whining if the author had to actually make himself known, rather than hide behind the Queerty banner. Seriously, we should start demanding it.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 5:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • mark
      mark

      Here’s what the defense bill WILL do – fund the prison industrial complex, throw money at war and weopons, and… oh right that’s it.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 5:13 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ YCKTR & HMMM

      As a gay man I DO NOT want to be a “special class,” “protected class” or to be a “minority.” Equality means “same.” Laws can punish – they don’t prevent. Defining us as different and needing special treatment DOES NOT (magically) lead to equality.

      Blacks will readily admit that are still not equal – after decades of laws. Many suggest that about 1/3 of us are still racist. Women aren’t equal either and they had laws passed. I’m curious, has the Civil Rights Act of 1964 served its purpose? Blacks are now equal? We can Repeal that law, right?

      We will be equal when people believe we are. Making laws will never accomplish that – in fact, it only makes it more difficult.

      So, just because you’re involved in politics and think it’s the “answer,” don’t suggest that any law creates any equality – they don’t. Equality is about beliefs, and perception, not laws.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 6:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • San Francisco Treat
      San Francisco Treat

      I’m with Drewbrown. Who writes this shit? I’m sure you can find a gay journalism major at any college in the country to help you not sound like a moron while discussing politics and/or the law.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 6:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian White
      Brian White

      It’s amusing how some of you attack Queerty. Queerty said:

      But for all the hubbub over finally enacting hate crimes legislation that includes LGBTs, it’s not like the law is actually going to change anything.

      It isn’t going to change anything. It is, in small part, a political victory, but it doesn’t change anything for LGBT persons. Plus, it has absolutely nothing to do with our equality.

      Thank-you to Queerty for telling it like it is – even if the political junkies think this new Law is somehow significant. It is just a reason for HRC (and the rest of Gay Inc.) to solicit money.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 6:37 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew

      You have it 100% wrong. African Americans and women will both tell you that they ARE equal. Its other people’s bigotry that prevents them from understanding that.

      Because of this, it is imperative that our equality be coded into law to prevent bigots from denying us our rights and punish those who still do so. This is the entire purpose of a society, to protect its members. Your libertarian ideas are nothing more than a child’s view on how things SHOULD work if everyone would just play nice.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 6:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ Orpheus_Lost:

      Blacks are equal? They say that? Really? So, we should repeal the Civil Rights Act?

      Tell me, do white males need “protection” in our society? No, just the gay ones? Oh, then we’re not the same, huh?

      Equality = same.

      By the way, laws don’t end bigotry. Never have, never will.

      What do you suppose DOES end bigotry?

      Oct 28, 2009 at 6:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      @Andrew

      I was not saying that African-Americans are equal because of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. I was saying that equality is a continuum, and whatever degree of inequality minorities suffer today, things would be A LOT MORE unequal were it not for the passage of several key pieces of legislation. Women continue to make 75 cents on the dollar compared to men. This is not equality. But it would be a hell of a lot less if it weren’t for the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

      And like it or not, we ARE a “special class.” There are rights that our government continues to deny us and several deranged people out there who will beat us up because of who we are. So you can live on a cloud and say that you don’t want to think of yourself as different than anyone else, or you can wake up and realize that you ARE different than other people, and the Hate Crimes legislation merely recognizes that and tries to protect you.

      Laws do not end bigotry. But they combat bigotry, and they are an effective weapon at doing so.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 6:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew

      Ok, I’ll explain it like I would for a four year old (not far off, I guess). African Americans (I notice you never use that term) are equal members of society as are women. Just because others (you, perhaps?) don’t believe they’re equal doesn’t make them less so. When you don’t believe someone is equal to you based on sex, race, sexual orientation or any other distinguishing feature that does not harm others, you are a bigot. Once again, that doesn’t mean the person you hate isn’t equal, it just means that you in your ignorance don’t think they are.

      I will very happily state here and now that I know that African Americans, women, GLBTers and white straight men are all equal. The problem, since you need it spelled out, is that some people want to discriminate against others. I know that discriminate is a big word so I’ll tell you what it means. Discrimination is when someone won’t give you a job or let you live someplace because you look or act different from them.

      In America, we’re not supposed to do this because its bad. Its so bad that all the men and women in the country got together and voted to make it against the law. They even put it into the Constitution; its called the 14th amendment. Later on, they did the same thing just for women even though the 14 amendment already said that everyone was equal.

      Those people who don’t want to protect people from mean bigots are bad people. They want the majority to decide whether African American children can go to school with other children. They want to stop one person from loving another person. They want to stop women from being able to control their own bodies. Sometimes they say they just don’t want to be “classified” or they just don’t like nasty old laws, but what they really mean is that they just kind of like hating other people.

      Do you want me to read “Where the Wild Things Are” to you now?

      Oct 28, 2009 at 7:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Hmmm

      Don’t play into Andrew’s little strawman, Hmmm. He’s trying to push the idea that you can’t force people to think of minorities as equals when that’s not what this debate is about. The question isn’t whether minorities are equal, its whether minorities have equal rights under the law. Andrew either confuses or hides from the fact that legislation doesn’t work to change people’s minds, but their actions. It will always be completely legal for Andrew to hate African Americans but it is not legal for him to refuse to rent an apartment to them. That is what civil rights laws are for.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 7:16 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      @Orpheus_Lost

      I think we are saying the same thing, but different ways. I think we both agree that all people are equal intrinsically – that is, we are all deserving of equal dignity, the same rights, etc. I think we also both agree that society does not yet treat people equally, and because of this unequal treatment, we must pass laws in our attempt to force people (to the best of our ability) to treat people equally. Not in all areas of life (for example, I can’t sue you for not inviting black people or gay people to your birthday party), but in those areas that matter most (education, housing, voting, employment).

      You are saying “We ARE equal already (intrinsically). We only need laws because some people refuse to treat us equally.” I think my use of the word “equal” has to do with the level of substantive equality a group has already achieved. My definition has to do with how a group is treated by society. Your definition of “equal” has to do with the extent to which people are intrinsically worthy of equality. But under this conception of “equality” African-Americans were “equal” under slavery, because they were deserving of equality, even though most people around them refused to acknowledge as much. If we are talking about improving equality for disadvantaged groups, it doesn’t help to use terminology suggesting that we have already achieved equality. It sounds like our work is over, when in fact we have a long way to go.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ Orpheus_Lost:

      Don’t be childish. I said “ask Blacks if they feel equal.”

      What you are promoting is that laws change people and they don’t. If you have examples – please share.

      You are not addressing the source of the problem, but rather just putting everyone on notice that they’ll be punished. It’s odd that you believe that is effective.

      The Civil Rights Act did NOT help make blacks more equal – time did. People learned and grew. Probably mostly from having Black friends and understanding. See, most of us white guys had to get over what we were taught. My Father was a bigot. His friends were, too. Over time, generations it has changed. It isn’t complete, but it has changed. The “laws” didn’t do that – we did. Honest, caring and compassionate people did.

      Passing ENDA won’t prevent firings or other discrimination. It will only punish the guilty. Punishing guilty people doesn’t create equality.

      No, I am not in a “special class.” I do not need to be treated differently, I need to be treated the “same.” THAT is equality.

      You and your laws simply reinforce our being “different, defective or unworthy.” I am none of those things.

      Last night Joy Behar was yelling at Joe-The-Plumber about gay is not a choice and she asked “why would anyone want to be gay?” That only reinforces the idea that we are not acceptable and certainly not the “same.” She didn’t mean it that way – but, that’s the message.

      All of the focus on bad behavior and protective laws misses the point – why do we even need them? It must be because people believe we are wrong or defective. That’s the real problem. Until we change that – we can’t be equal. Laws don’t do that. Fighting doesn’t either. Understanding will.

      We won’t be equal until people believe we are.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ HMMM

      You said: And like it or not, we ARE a “special class.” There are rights that our government continues to deny us and several deranged people out there who will beat us up because of who we are.

      The “government” is not denying you those rights – your fellow citizens are. It is because of their beliefs – they believe (the majority) that we are “wrong.” That’s the problem.

      There are 67 Anti-Gay US Senators – each one of them representing the views of their constituents. They make the laws on behalf of the people. So, if you really want equality – you need to change the people, not the laws. You change the people, by changing their minds.

      In order to change their minds, we could use a little less fighting and a lot more talking. Fighting and/or punishing people does not change their beliefs – understanding does.

      So, to obtain real equality we have work to do, not political work, but real, meaningful conversations with our friends and foes. That’s the only thing that has ever worked.

      We won’t be equal until people believe we are.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:32 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Missing Bush
      Missing Bush

      I never thought a day would come when I missed Bush…he would of done what this site wants and vetoed it but there would be tons to complain about.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew

      As always, when proved wrong you lie about what the other person is saying. I expressly said that I was not trying to promote laws that “change people” and yet here you are claiming otherwise. I support legislation that keeps people from changing me.

      But the truth is that you don’t have a real argument, just bullshit covered by a thin mesh of libertarian philosophy. Your theory (such as it is) is that it is our responsibility to convince each and every individual not to discriminate against us. If we can’t manage that then its our fault. That’s downright moronic and why you need to be spoken to as a child.

      Its not our fault that you have some perverse need to not think of yourself as a minority when you obviously are. Its not our fault you can’t understand that we’re not trying to legislate our equality, only our equal rights under the law. And its not our fault you can’t understand the difference.

      So lets cut out the bullshit and the lies you’re trying to spread and get down to reality. The vast majority of the GLBT community is working to obtain our equal rights (note: I did not say equality, we are already equal) under the law. Your mental deficiencies do not give you the right to try to stop that.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:47 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      Does everyone in this thread really believe that we can’t change people’s minds about what it means to be gay? Are you all that cynical? You really think that we have to get laws passed because we’ll never convince the world that we’re equal without forcing them to with legal protections?

      Look, laws make life more comfortable for gays, but they don’t change the world. Hate crimes give us the comfort of knowing that anyone who hurts us because of who we are will have to face the full power of the law – as long as the religious beliefs of judges, juries, or attorneys don’t stand in the way of that justice.

      I would rather know that people don’t hate me so much that they would want to hurt me.

      ENDA would give us the comfort of knowing that if someone fired us because of who we are, we could sue their pants off and retire early. As long as we had definitive proof that we were fired because of the gayness, and not some job related excuse. So hold on to your tape recorder and keep your fingers crossed that your boss calls you a faggot when he hands you your pink slip.

      I would rather know that people didn’t consider orientation a reason to fire anyone.

      DADT, DOMA, the rest. It’s the same. We can change people’s minds instead/in addition to changing laws. But no one has tried! No one has broken the taboo and proactively tried to redefine gay existence. We can change minds if we’re willing to have the conversation on the scale that we need. Most already would be willing to support us. They’ve just never had their biblical teaching challenged in a compelling way.

      We do that, and the laws, protections, and the rest are easy. You get the country on our side, and laws get passed. But the best part is that the laws won’t matter, because the only people left who would hurt us, who hold on to that bigotry, will be a small and marginalized group. And then we will truly be equal.

      I want to live in a world where the outrage over Matthew Shepard’s murder is exactly the same – no more and no less than it would be if the circumstances were identical, but the victim were straight. We can live in that world, but not by passing these laws. The Matthew Shepard Act does not make us equal.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • YCKTR
      YCKTR

      @ Andrew

      I’ll dispense with the name-calling and try to keep this short and sweet. Laws on paper do not change people’s actions, but over time they DO change people’s perception of right and wrong. Does it happen with one new law? Of course not. But what it does is get us in the door…in this case we are now part of a greater system…one that before today failed to mention or acknowledge us. I know it’s difficult waiting…and try to keep in mind that we’re both after the same goal. But this sort of thing doesn’t happen all at once…that’s just not a realistic expectation. Perhaps you feel like we’re settling for peanuts…or half the prize…and I understand that. My hope is that today is just the first step…the demarcation line between then and now. Time will tell.

      I guess I wonder what you would prefer as an alternative? No hate crimes bill? Different wording? Different legislation? Clue me in.

      As far as I’m concerned, I’m just happy to finally be invited to the table. Does that mean I have give-up what I believe in? Not a chance. Hell, I might slurp my soup and grab dessert first while I’m here. Regardless, it sure beats sitting outside as usual.

      !

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:56 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Bill Perdue
      Bill Perdue

      We have a new tool to help defend ourselves. But as Oscar Wilde says “I have no doubt we shall win, but the road is long and red with monstrous martyrdoms”.

      That won’t change because of this law.

      It won’t change because our communities are subjected to an unending barrage of hate speech by cult figures like Obama buddies Rick Warren and Donnie McClurkin, catholic and mormon cultists and southern baptists. The thugs understand exactly what the cultists say and use it to justify shooting, stabbing, bludgeoning, hacking and burning about 25 of us to death every year and beating and maiming many others.

      The thugs also get empowered by politicians like Bill Clinton who enshrined bigotry in law by championing and signing hate laws like DADT and DOMA and Republicans who used state DOMAs to help win elections. And they pay attentions when Obama tells them we’re unfit to be married.

      Hate crimes will end when we and our allies rise up and fundamentally revolutionize American politics and throw the religious and political bigots out of power.

      Link to the NCAVP, the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs at http://www.ncavp.org/

      Oct 28, 2009 at 8:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • YCKTR
      YCKTR

      @ Bill Perdue

      100%

      A+

      Overwelming WIN.

      !

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • PEter
      PEter

      Never fucking happy are you Queerty. You must be one of the most miserable people on Earth. You have a victory and protection under FEDERAL law and you can’t take a moment to take the experience in. No…you just have to shit all over it.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      @Andrew

      Your fundamental misunderstanding is your failure to see the role that legislation DOES PLAY in the process of changing minds. You say that laws do nothing – only interacting with people and “time” will change things.

      But many gays and lesbians might not be openly gay at the workplace without the security that if their employer fires them because of it, they can sue their employer. If those workers are not openly gay in the workplace, those “mind-changing, eye-opening” conversations cannot happen.

      Before the Civil Rights Act of 1964, it was perfectly fine for a home-owner to refuse to sell or rent property to black people, simply because they didn’t like black people. ENTIRE COMMUNITIES would have racial covenants that said no one in this 10-block radius is allowed to sell their home to a black person. How are you supposed to open the minds of your neighbors if they won’t even let you move in? But because a LAW was passed making such practices illegal, property owners were forced to sell to black people and black people were able to move into communities that had previously shut them out. Maybe the people who were adults at the time still hated blacks as much as before, but BECAUSE OF THE LAW, the NEXT GENERATION of kids grew up with black neighbors and open minds.

      So passing a law doesn’t immediately change minds. But it is the catalyst that pushes real progress forward.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      @Y – If we take the other civil rights movements as a guide, waiting for laws to change perceptions means a hell of a lot of waiting. It buys us all another 50, 80, 100, or more years of waiting around for a country that treats us as equals. And that’s a lot of time, in which there will continue to be tragedy, pain and suffering, firings and injustice, and far too many generations of gay teenagers who are growing up around people who tell them they are wrong, or sinful, or “different.” Try telling them that these laws will make their lives better. It won’t make any difference at all.

      What we need to be doing is channeling our efforts and our resources into reclaiming this cultural conversation. There have been two millennia in which there was one, unchallenged definition of the gay existence. Now, with science, philosophy, multiculturalism, and the trifecta of google, wikipedia, and YouTube, I think now would be an appropriate time to define ourselves. We can do it if we decide to.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers
      The Gay Numbers

      Well- leave for a few hours, and come back to straw man arguments by ignorant people with ill defined terms and their detractors.

      For the record, the discussion is whether we are EQUAL UNDER THE LAW. Underline “UNDER THE LAW”

      That’s the part that the law can affected since that’s the harm being addressed. If you don’t understand that, then you waste hours arguing over the straw man of ‘equal.’

      Laws are not meant to change people. They are meant to prevent them from fucking each other over more than they would without the laws. Laws don’t prevent people from murdering each other, but it does reduce the number of murders if for no other reason than some are not willing to take that chance of prison even if they emotionally really want to bump someone off. Laws do not prevent people from speeding, but it convinces a sizeable number of people not to speed. Laws do not prevent anything from happening because human’s being humans are going to resist laws. That says nothing about the laws themselves or whether we should have them. Only a libertarian nutjob (which is what I suspect many of you are) would post ramblings about laws don’t change behavior.

      I suppose what you mean is that a murderous person who does not murder someone because of the law still does want to murder someone. Yes, but for the potential corpse to be- it matters not whether they are saved by individual good graces or by the law that convinced the would be killer not to murder someone.

      This should all be self evident. But the education system in the U.S. being what it is- I guess it is not.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      @Hmm – any employer whose beliefs are bigoted enough that they would want to get rid of a gay employee will not be stopped by something like ENDA. They will still find a way to fire the homo in the office. They just won’t say “faggot” until that employee is out of earshot.

      We could wait for enough generations to die off and get treated as equals. But why the hell would we want to when we can make THIS generation better?

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      @Chance

      I don’t know what to say other than you are patently wrong. If you don’t think that the threat of lawsuits forced employers to hire black people who had not previously hired black people, you are wrong. Maybe an individual employer at a small family-run business would still find a way to fire the gay employee. (But businesses with fewer than 25 employees do not have to abide by federal workplace discrimination statutes anyway.) With large corporations, it is not always ONE person making hiring, firing, and promotion decisions. There are Human Resources departments who REALLY try to make sure the company doesn’t get sued. If there is a threat of lawsuits, they will have training seminars and diversity seminars, and they may force the boss to think twice before firing the black guy, or the Asian woman, or the lesbian.

      But guys, this is not either/or. You’re all creating a false dichotomy between “waiting for the politicos to pass laws that help us” and “helping ourselves.” It is one and the same. One of the ways we help ourselves is by pushing for these laws, but we don’t only do that. We also talk to our neighbors, and our families and our co-workers, and we live our lives openly and proudly. It’s a multi-fronted war, and no one piece will do it on its own, but you are deranged if you think that pro-LGBT legislation isn’t a step in the right direction.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      “Equal under the Law” is irrelevant if people believe we are not equal. That is setting the bar very low. All honest LGBT people want equality – not laws. It is unfortunate that we are in this position, but we are. the next step becomes “how do we change that?” Laws – do not change what people think of us.

      I agree with what Chance has written. We’re settling for some meaningless laws – instead of trying to create equality.

      I think it’s easy to make the case that we need some laws to protect us or end discrimination, but i have to admit we don’t actually want that. We want equality. To suggest that laws create equality allows people an excuse for not working for equality.

      Heterosexuals do not need “protections,” we do. That’s un-equal. The “laws” confirm that, not end it.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:32 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      @Andrew

      You’re right. Maybe the slaves should have rejected the Emancipation Proclamation. They don’t need special protections. The Emancipation Proclamation did nothing more than confirm that blacks were unequal. How awful. They should have just REASONED with their masters. (Sarcasm, in case that wasn’t patently obvious.)

      Oct 28, 2009 at 9:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ HMMM:

      Comparing LGBT people to slavery? Trying to make some kind of connection? Really? No kidding.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 10:20 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian White
      Brian White

      You just went right over the edge HMMM.

      If you want civil rights, how about starting by having a civil conversation? Maybe thinking before you type.

      A few people have expressed some interesting ideas and you suggest that gays are in a similar situation as slaves? Oh no you didn’t. Did you?

      Oct 28, 2009 at 10:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers
      The Gay Numbers

      Andrew

      I don’t debate sophists.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 10:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      Have to agree. The shark, it is jumped.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 10:34 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ozymandias
      Ozymandias

      Well I for one think this is GREAT NEWS!

      Does this mean that we should just sit back on our laurels? No! This only means that we have ‘our foot in the door’ of recognition by the government – we now need to push even harder for Equal rights under the Law.

      At the same time, the LGBT community needs to redouble our efforts to reach out, and have that ‘civil conversation’ with our families, our friends, our neighbors about why laws like this are necessary, and that we’re not ‘Abominations’ or ‘Deviant’!

      Oct 28, 2009 at 10:37 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      Shark jumping in reference to Hmm’s slavery card, of course.

      #s, that may be the discussion you’re having, but I think what you’re not quite grasping is that lots of people don’t want to have that discussion. Lots of people think it’s a distracting discussion, and that it’s a discussion that doesn’t positively influence very much of very many of our lives.

      Equal rights under the law is a house of cards. Equality is a revolution.

      We’re having a conversation about how we can achieve equality, because equal rights under the law (or however you like to overcapitalize) are not enough. A conversation about how we can make it so gay-bashers aren’t just punished more severely, but that gay-hatred societally becomes an antiquated form of thought. Because maybe these laws will be enforced, maybe maybe. Or maybe people with bigoted beliefs will just find their ways around the laws, and police and juries and judges with bigoted beliefs will let them off the hook. Or voters with bigoted beliefs will vote politicians with bigoted beliefs into office so that those equal rights under law are repealed.

      And here we are talking about changing those beliefs while we have the opportunity, and the only contribution you have is “sophist?” Congratulations. An inspiration.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 10:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers
      The Gay Numbers

      No, Chance, you just a sophist who has a computer. Don’t confuse what you are doing.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 10:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      Shit. You got me there. How you (sic) know me so well?

      Oct 28, 2009 at 11:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian White
      Brian White

      “The Gay Numbers” is a waste of time and energy. Don’t bother with him – he thinks he’s very smart. It’s all downhill from there.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 11:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Josh
      Josh

      Hey, you a sophist, two. Me no talk either.

      Thanks GayNumbers. That was one of your best evers.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 11:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • libhomo
      libhomo

      It’s kind of sad that the trolls are in force for this one.

      Anyway, thanks to the NEM participants! Thanks to the people who marched outside of the HRC dinner! You created the final push that got this passed.

      Oct 28, 2009 at 11:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rowen
      Rowen

      I’d like to point out that HMM’s slavery reference was not to say that gays are like slaves, or that the gay situation is like the slaves situation, but to point out the basic fallacy that’s plaguing this conversation, i.e. we shouldn’t celebrate or waste our effort on the laws of the land, because that’s gonna do nothing to change the minds of the people.

      We NEED laws to HELP make us equal. Will laws do it by themselves? No. Will the laws stop companies from finding ways to fire employees they don’t like? No, but that has nothing to do with equality, since jobs figured out how to get rid of the “undesirables” without paying a severance package a long time ago. Will it stop people from gay bashing? No, BUT it does give a way for those crimes to be punished under the fullness of the law.

      The law and the government are not our moral and ethical nannies. It’s not their place to tell us how we “should” act, just how we can’t act. What I USUALLY see from people who are working hard on legislation is that they are also active forces in the community, being good examples of who gay people really are (neighbors, firefighters, doctors, mid level managers, etc) and being good examples of what gays are not (child molesters, perverts, monsters, ninjas, etc.).

      So, while all of you have some good points, I would like to celebrate the passage of this bill, and view it as a jumping point for better things to come and better things to work for, rather then lambasting it as not enough, and having to settle for second class citizenship until the majority condescends to give it to us through a majority vote. (which is pretty much never going to happen in my lifetime)

      Oct 29, 2009 at 12:27 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rio
      Rio

      What Rowen said.

      While it’s a nice idea to think that we shouldn’t need any laws to make us equal because we’re all equal and whatnot, the sad fact of the matter is we’re not (or else we wouldn’t be having this discussion). And there’s obviously a lot of merit to the idea of simply connecting with others as a way of breaking through the bigotry, it’s not enough. Not all people who hate and are actively prejudiced against others different from themselves are going to want to engage in a dialogue with these “others” and understand their point of view. Enforcing laws like this isn’t going to create a happy rainbows and sunshine environment where we all get along, but it will hopefully set the stage for upcoming and future generations to work towards a society where it will be less of an issue. And while I definitely agree that time is a significant factor when it comes to major shifts in attitude, it’s inaccurate to say that the Civil Rights Act didn’t do anything. Laws put into place to prevent certain groups of people from doing something/having the same rights as others/etc. does not promote equality and they need to be countered with ones that do. If you want equality, you’re going to have to fight for it with words as well as with political action. It may seem unfair and unjust, but just expecting to be treated as equals when the majority who hold the power don’t view you that way isn’t really going to get you anywhere. Like it or not, much of the minority experience has to do with struggling to be heard and taken seriously, and obviously we’re not out of the woods yet.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:54 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Paul
      Paul

      “It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me, and I think that’s pretty important.”

      Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

      Equality is a truth that stands above the opinions and judgements of mere mortals. Laws are enacted to make sure no mere mortal tramples upon that truth.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 3:35 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Elfred
      Elfred

      Are you serious with this?
      Is this site now run by GoProud? Log Cabin?
      Cause its starting to blow.

      Stop it with the bitter, hate, impatience.
      It’s important to be critical.
      It’s important to question.
      But this sites starting to sound like it’s never going to be happy with anything.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:54 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian NJ
      Brian NJ

      The gay community is not being hateful of Obama and the HRC, they are being forceful, and employing critical thinking about what they do. Critics of Obama are all lifelong gay democrats, like myself, who have just had enough of the gay elites telling us to shut up, stop complaining about the wonderful democrats, while they keep driving the bus over the cliff. The want to influence the government by throwing them parties of approval, while telling us, “Just shut up and write your congressman! Write your congressmen!” Stop writing your fucking congressmen. The gay elites have been so nice, nothing gets done! Just look at the HRC website after the signing of the hate crimes legislation. Oh thank you! Oh thank you! Where is the self-esteem, and the leverage there? Have another sip of champagne mister president! Is your chair comfortable enough mister president?

      The critical question is this: If he can get this simple amendment to the hate crimes bill on his desk, which required little work because it is only an amendment, whey can’t he get two simple repeals on his desk? The repeals are not complex new legislation, like the reorganization of health care? He won’t do it because they are gambling with our agenda.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 9:34 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      @brian, speak for yourself. i dont ever claim that my opinions represent the whole of the ‘gay community.’ there are PLENTY of us that dont suddenly hate obama because 10 months in we dont have every single one of the rights being fought for for the last 50 years all at once. im happy with the progress, and i do believe the laws will continue to pass one by one. pressure is important, but there is no point in trying to pressure someone by bashing them.

      i think the ‘man on the ground’ demonstations are effective for those involved. but they shouldnt be slapping the hrc for its methods which also work, and follow its mission. the hrc isnt the organizaiton to end all gay organization, it has a specific purpose for which it is effective. those behind the hrc dont have to be the same kind of grass roots locals working on a community level. there is something to be gained by advocating for gays rights in more than one approach. i seriously discredit anyone who thinks only one approach is the right approach.

      queerty would have you believe gays are fracturing into millions of groups all at each others throats. the reality is different than certain bloggers and ‘gay leaders’ would have us believe.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 9:52 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Keith Kimmel
      Keith Kimmel

      No. 60 · Brian NJ

      “Critics of Obama are all lifelong gay democrats…”

      I agree with everything you said, except this. There are actually some gay Republicans and others who are truely indpenedant of any party. I fit into that last group. I could best be described as fiscally ultra-conservative but socially liberal.

      I have alot of problems with Obama, not just on gay rights but overall. He is a liar just like the one that came before him but he is far worse and far more dangerious. George HW Bush was a terrible public speaker and was often unable to sell hogs to hog farmers. Obama, on the other hand, is very good at selling plans, agendas, ideas, etc.

      In his campaign, he told everyone what they wanted to hear. He told the gays he would get us married, then he went before the religious wackos and told them he did not believe in gay marriage. He did this on issue after issuer after issue.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 10:15 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian NJ
      Brian NJ

      Harsh criticism and anger at Obama for putting repeals of DADT and DOMA on the bottom of his to do list is warranted, and anger is not hate. Remember, Obama works for us, not the other way around. The HRC has not been effective, it has been counter-productive and its parties and standing ovations have permitted the house, senate and white house to put repeals of DADT and DOMA at the bottom of their agenda. If you go to the HRC website, you will not find find one shred of critical commentary on the president, or any request to write the white house and complain. Gays should stop clinging to Obama out of fear, and start demanding action.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 10:17 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • planetspinz
      planetspinz

      I am concerned that by the hate crimes bill being attached to the Defense Department funding, part of this funding will pay for Don’t Ask Just Beat up the Queers, Kick them Out & Replace them with Felons & Fascists.

      Until the court case Lawrence v Texas, the Supreme Court ruled that the 14th amendment did not apply to LGBT Americans. Rulings on equal marriage rights by the court consistently ruled that the 14th amendment did not apply to us, starting in 1971 with the case Baker v Nelson. The Supreme Court ruled not to even hear the case because there were no federal laws about the 14th amendment applying to LGBT Americans. Since DOMA passed, there is a law now.

      Will this hate crime bill change that, as we are now included with people of color, religions, disabled and women as covered by the 14th amendment?’s equal protection clause – “no state shall … deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws”. Time will certainly tell.

      First the Obama administration’s Department of Justice needs to stop blocking SCOTUS from hearing cases challenging the Discriminatory Offensive Marriage Attack (DOMA) and Don’t Ask Just Kick the Queers Out. Then we will know if the hate crimes bill will give SCOTUS that federal law recognizing that we are also covered by the equal protection clause that “no state shall … deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws”.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 10:38 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      LibHomo said: “Anyway, thanks to the NEM participants! Thanks to the people who marched outside of the HRC dinner! You created the final push that got this passed.”

      Are you crazy??? It took twelve years and it was attached to the Defense Spending Bill – so, it wasn’t passed willingly.

      You think because 25,000 people Marched in DC this was passed? That’s beyond delusional. It’s sad.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 11:37 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      Rowan – individual role models are excellent. For individuals. But there are too few people who have stood up and gone all out in that way. Too few individuals eyes and minds are opened by the wonderful people leading by example. Not to diminish their personal efforts, but we are dealing with a mountain of negative belief, which has been reinforced by thousands of years of invoking God’s name. In order to change things, to see real change in the next 3 years, we have to change that conversation. That doesn’t happen through laws. Laws don’t change beliefs – people with those beliefs will only resent the laws and reinforce their beliefs. Keep fighting for those laws, but we need a movement. We need to get rid of the stigma of being gay. No one has tried to create that movement.

      Rio – don’t be satisfied with having a better world a few generations down the line. You’re selling yourself short, and you’re selling out all of the people who won’t live to see that world. Let’s make this generation better. Because we can, and we must. It’s our opportunity and our responsibility.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 11:42 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Attmay
      Attmay

      @ 62 Keith:

      He said he supported gay marriage…in 1996, when no one knew or cared who he was. Then came the chance for the White House and he threw us under the bus in SC. That was in 2007. Then came his inane yet disgusting “God is in the mix” statement that was not only anti-gay but anti-heterosexual atheist/agnostic/anyone married by a Justice of the Peace. And the far-from-final insult was the invocation at the coronation, given by anti-semitic homophobe Rick Warren.

      Gay Republicans, conservatives, and libertarians are routinely called self-loathing,
      “Jews for Hitler” (how to violate Godwin’s Law in the most vile manner possible), and worse, yet the Log Cabin Republicans said the exact same thing almost everyone else who is gay and not drinking the HRC Kool-Aid has been saying about the Obama administration and the entire “Democratic” party: we, like every minority group, are a cheap date to them. I refuse to vote for a Democrat again as long as I live because of their antics during the Bush Administration, and if I don’t like the Republican, I either vote for the Libertarian candidate or write in myself or the first cartoon character that comes to mind. As a group, we choose to align with one side, thus we have become a partisan issue. That was a mistake.

      Thanks to the activists who held, and must continue to hold, the government’s feet to the fire. They are the ones who deserve credit for this. The Democrats had to attach this to a military spending bill. It couldn’t pass on its own merits.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 11:47 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ Rowen: We may NEED laws, but we don’t WANT them.

      Real equality for LGBT persons would not require laws. I don’t think anyone has suggested that we don’t pursue anti-discrimination laws, but the alternative – changing minds is a much more desirable result. Becoming a “special class” or “protected class” makes us more different, not more same. Equality = “Same.”

      People have suggested that “laws” change minds and yet they have offered no evidence. It is true that laws may provide some comfort because we can now punish people (if we catch them) but that doesn’t change the source of the problem: beliefs.

      The number one contributor to changing attitudes about Blacks is “time,” not the Civil Rights Act. Old people, with old beliefs, eventually die off. Racist parents stop creating racist children. When the “teaching” stops, the beliefs end. Laws are not part of that cycle.

      The reason we don’t “want” new laws is that with each one we become MORE different, not LESS. The goal is to become the “same.” That battle is in the minds of our fellow citizens. It is an effort that we are not trying – instead we lazily expect someone else or something else (laws, politicians, etc.) to create our equality. Our equality is something we all have to participate in.

      Gay Inc. is not working towards our “equality.” They are working for our “equal rights.” Those two things are very different. If one explores it honestly and objectively – you conclude the pursuit of “equal rights” is counterproductive.

      It may sound radical, bit it’s actually very simple. Give it some thought. I appreciate your comments.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 11:53 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew

      Your comments don’t sound radical, they sound simplistic and extremely regressive. Yes, equal rights and equality are different, but you’re the only one arguing that we aren’t equal. We ARE equal whether some toothless fuck in Kentucky thinks we are or not. We ARE equal whether the law agrees with that or not. We ARE equal whether YOU believe it or not.

      The slave on the Plantation was every bit as equal to the plantation owner. He was equally human and deserving of equal rights. The legal system kept him from his equal rights but nothing on this earth could keep him from being inherently equal.

      I really don’t know how many times this has to be spelled out for you; OUR EQUALITY IS NOT BASED ON ANY BIGOTRY IN THE MINDS OF OTHER PEOPLE! WE ARE BORN EQUAL AND REMAIN EQUAL! WE ARE SEEKING OUR EQUAL RIGHTS BECAUSE WE ARE EQUAL, NOT TO BECOME SO.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hmmm
      Hmmm

      @Andrew
      @Brian White

      I was pointing out the fallacy in your argument. I was not equating being gay to slavery. Your argument seemed to be that if people are really equal, they won’t need laws to protect them. Therefore, they should reject any law that tries to protect them, since such a law merely reaffirms their inferiority. And I was saying that when you try that line of reasoning out on an extreme example (slavery – obviously far more extreme than the prejudice we suffer today), you can see why that argument does not make sense. (When will people EVER understand that analogizing two things is different than EQUATING two things?)

      We are not treated equally in today’s society. Straight people can get married. I can’t. Straight people can discuss their sexuality in the armed forces. I can’t. What you seem to be saying is that any law that tries to remedy these inequalities is irksome because it reminds you of the fact that you were unequal to begin with. Seems like cutting off your nose to spite your face to me. I’d rather receive “special protection” as you call it and have society treat me equally rather than delude myself into thinking I have already achieved equality despite having to use air quotes around the word “married.”

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew

      Your comments don’t sound radical, they sound simplistic and extremely regressive. Yes, equal rights and equality are different, but you’re the only one arguing that we aren’t equal. We ARE equal whether some toothless fuck in Kentucky thinks we are or not. We ARE equal whether the law agrees with that or not. We ARE equal whether YOU believe it or not.

      The slave on the Plantation was every bit as equal to the plantation owner. He was equally human and deserving of equal rights. The legal system kept him from his equal rights but nothing on this earth could keep him from being inherently equal.

      I really don’t know how many times this has to be spelled out for you; OUR EQUALITY IS NOT BASED ON ANY BIGOTRY IN THE MINDS OF OTHER PEOPLE! WE ARE BORN EQUAL AND REMAIN EQUAL! WE ARE SEEKING OUR EQUAL RIGHTS BECAUSE WE ARE EQUAL, NOT TO BECOME SO.

      Do you get that? We are claiming something that is already ours but has been denied us by a bigoted majority. Yes, we need to change the minds of bigots or let them die out, but we cannot wait patiently for these bigots to change their minds in order to get our equal rights.

      As for your argument of not wanting to be a dreaded ‘minority’, suck it up. We constitute less that 50% of the population so we are a minority. We are discriminated against so we are a minority. We have needs, as a minority, of the protections provided by the Constitution – a document created solely to protect the needs of minorities from the ‘mob rules’ mentality of the majority.

      Why is this concept so very difficult for you to grasp?

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ #61 ExratBatteries

      You said: “the hrc isnt the organizaiton to end all gay organization, it has a specific purpose for which it is effective.”

      Effective? 28 years and $300 million. Would you please provide some evidence?

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ HMMM:

      You said: “We are not treated equally in today’s society.”

      Correct. Then, you are NOT equal. That reality is in the minds (beliefs) of our fellow citizens. The LGBT Community is doing nothing to change that – instead many people lazily assume that “laws will save us.” That’s the problem.

      I have said that we may NEED laws, but we don’t WANT them – not if equality is the goal. You can’t make beliefs or perceptions about us disappear with new laws – you have to change them.

      Changing those beliefs requires each of us to engage in a concerted effort to enlighten our fellow citizens, not simply threaten them with punishment. THAT would be a “movement.” Expecting “equal rights” to do that job is like “fools gold,” it may resemble progress, but it isn’t. It also prevents us from doing the real work to gain equality – changing minds.

      You can go on expecting Gay Inc. and their “hired guns” to create equality for you – it’s been 50 years and billions of dollars so far, or you can recognize the real solution and participate in that effort. Our equality requires our effort. We have the ability to enroll the majority of our fellow citizens in our equality, but we are not doing that. If we are to have a real, sustainable “movement” it will be one-on-one conversations with our friends and foes. That will work and it won’t take another 50 years.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew

      Once again, we’re not trying to have equality “created” for us, we’re trying to establish our equal rights in the legal system so that bigots can’t legal cause us harm.

      The truth is that you don’t see yourself as equal. So long as one person out there sees you as less than themselves (and there will always be someone), you will think of yourself as less that fully human deserving of respect. The vast majority of us don’t agree with that and never will. You go ahead and be the gay Uncle Tom, but the rest of us need to move forward with establishing in law what we already know to be true. WE ARE EQUAL!

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ Orpheus_Lost:

      YOU are the one fighting to become a “special class,” “protected class” and a “minority” – not me. I am suggesting the more difficult work of changing beliefs and perceptions about us.

      It is easy for you to take the easy route. I fully understand that. But, it is clearly counterproductive to our goal of “equality.”

      So, keep making laws and pretending it contributes to our equality – it does not. Some of us are doing the real work of creating equality ourselves and not seeking a legal savior or remedy.

      It is our equality, so it is our responsibility.

      Sure, it takes more effort than contributing to HRC or marching around making demands and then celebrating an insignificant, mostly “symbolic law” (Hate Crimes) being passed, but we can create real results. Ultimately, if we are to have equality, we must change minds. You can keep changing laws and politicians, but don’t pretend that’s working. It isn’t for the last 50 years and there is no evidence that it ever will – until we change minds.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:42 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Josh
      Josh

      That’s silly Orpheus – you think we’re equal just because you say so? The majority of Americans think we are not equal. Ahhhh, despite your statement to the contrary.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew and Josh

      So long as you continue to base your belief in equality on what other people think of you, you will never be equal. Enjoy that.

      @Andrew
      As for whether we are a minority, explain to me how we are NOT a minority. We constitute a definable segment of society that stands as less than 50% of the population. That is a minority and no hoping or wishing on a star will change that. It doesn’t matter whether you want to be or not, you are. The only difference is that you won’t accept reality.

      Lastly, its very nice trying to create a strawman argument that equates working for equal rights as being in league with HRC, but I’ll dash that little argument down right now. Many, if not most, activists do not support HRC because they seem to have the same mindset as yourself. They believe in sucking up to those in power in the hopes that one day they’ll like us and do something nice out of the goodness of their hearts – just as you do. The rest of us think that it is only through loud and sustained demands that anything will be accomplished. So while you’re knocking down your strawman, remember that you’re knocking down your own weak argument as well.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 1:54 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @Orpheus (Very) Lost:

      You said: “The rest of us think that it is only through loud and sustained demands that anything will be accomplished.”

      Keep making “demands” and pretending we are “equal.” That’s the easy, ineffective way out. Perhaps you just need to turn up the volume. Maybe you’re just not demanding loud enough. Because everyone knows people respond to demands. Demands make the world go around. If only people knew 50 years ago that they simply had to “demand” our rights. Shit – we’ve wasted all that time.

      While loudly making these demands, wear something colorful. I hear that works, too. It gets attention. That’s helpful, right?

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      Andrew wrote, “@ YCKTR & HMMM As a gay man I DO NOT want to be a ‘special class,’ ‘protected class’ or to be a ‘minority.’ Equality means ‘same.’ Laws can punish – they don’t prevent. Defining us as different and needing special treatment DOES NOT (magically) lead to equality.”

      First, gays are always going to be a “minority” because biological factors set the percentage of the population that is gay at around 3 to 5 percent. If everyone were exclusively gay, our species would die out. The term ‘special class’ or ‘protected class’ simply is legalese for classes of people who have been historically discriminated against. It simply reflects an understanding that the courts should monitor how the government treats people in cases where the government has a history of treating them unfairly. The Calfornia Supreme Court, for example, used that in 2008 when it declared the ban on same-sex marriage to be unconstitutional.

      As to hate-crime legislation, it is reasonable to increase prison terms for these crimes because they are harder to solve – the perpetrators do not have any connection with the victim, are selecting victims at random (making it easier to find a time and place when no witnesses are around) and evidence is hard to come by (unlike a robbery, where the stolen goods may be recovered). If the miscreant is less likely to be caught, you can justify a longer prison term because a stronger deterrent is needed to compensate.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      I don’t know about the rest of you, but I know I’m equal. I’m not concerned, however, about what I and other queers think. Because you and I aren’t the ones who are making it so that I can’t live my life as an equal. It’s the other ones out there, the ones who don’t think I’m equal. And you know what? Laws aren’t going to stop them from doing what they do. A cultural, societal shift will. I would rather focus efforts and resources on that, not some never ending fight for a protected, legal house of cards.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Josh
      Josh

      @ Orifice_Lost:

      Simple question: Historically and today, do you believe Blacks are happy being a “minority?” Do you think that designation has helped them or hurt them?

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      sorry, but if you are of the belief that the hrc and lobbyists accomplish nothing, your never going to be dissuaded. there is no point mentioning their role in passing the matthew shepard act since youre a total douche who doesnt give a fuqk anyhow.

      im going to make a ‘demand,’ admit your a bitter asshole who wants things handed to him instead of earned. ignoring the necessity of fighting for our rights is apathy at its worst. if youre old enough to be using a computer, you have lived long enough to see the changing attitudes towards lgbt in the past decade. you wouldnt survive a day a day in the 80′s with your contemporary self-entitled bullshit attitude. youd have been chewed up and spit out. be thankful you get to reap the rewards earned to you by those who learned what it means to stand up for their fellow man. this fight is being won, and its a series of bitter drawn out battles.

      douchebags like andrew wouldnt be happy in a utopia, who gives a crap what you think about hate crimes legislation, obama, the hrc or anything else. i have no desire to enter into discourse with someone who has so much rhetorical baggage and so little perspective.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ ExtraBatteries

      You said: “you have lived long enough to see the changing attitudes towards lgbt in the past decade.”

      That change in attitude has little to do with “demanding,” or HRC or anything “political.” It has to do with the weakening of religion and maturing beliefs by our fellow citizens. They have not changed their minds because of protest, but rather because they have been enlightened.

      Do some research. In US States that the “importance of religion” is less than 50% of the population – we have same-sex marriage and other rights – not to mention a huge change in “attitudes” about us. These are States in New England and the Northeast.

      Are you suggesting they’re just better at “demanding” and “fighting?” Even Barney Frank (Massachusetts) said Marching and Demanding were a “waste of time.” His Pro-LGBT State is only 48% religious. ALL 5 Congressional Members from Alabama are Anti-LGBT. It’s not a coincidence – 82% of Alabama’a voters make religion “important.” Wake up. Those are the facts.

      So, get over this idea that we just have to make demands or embarrass people to gain our equality. It’s not true. It does play into the Gay Inc. fundraising machine though – send cash so we can make demands. It is a waste of money.

      LGBT people are better than simply making angry demands. We are uniquely qualified to persuade our fellow citizens to stand up for equality. The problem is – we’re not doing that.

      Throughout history “asking for help” has always been more effective than shouting demands. Think about that.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      @andrew: you are arguing against points i didnt make. what am i suppose to jump on the other side because you oppose them? pfft

      youre in a bubble, do you need other people to argue with you, it sounds like youre having a conversation by yourself. you dont want to listen, you want to bitch. but i have to say, you picked a good place, you fit in perfectly with the bottomfeeders at queerty, maybe they can make you an editor.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:50 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew

      @ ExtraBatteries:

      Well, the truth is “conversation” requires thoughtful response and a sincere consideration of ideas. What happened to yours?

      The topic is: Equality – How and When? Would you like to contribute?

      Oct 29, 2009 at 2:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      you dont get it, its your negativity, your ‘attitude’, your self-indulgent rants. laws do effect change. what do i give a damn if some townsfolk like me. since when do equal rights laws have to come after full fledged public support.

      anyhow, im not interested in your opinions, you come off as dumb kid with a chip on your shoulder. you dont get to demand people enter into dialogue with you, youre just not that special. you are one of those people who doesnt know ‘what they dont know.’ im watching you fire arrows into the dark and assuming they all hit the target.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 3:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mark-n-Dallas
      Mark-n-Dallas

      I believe Josh has raised an important question for Orpheus and others – Do we want to be a “minority” and fight for “special protections?”

      I have to admit I have a few very good Black friends who are shunning the “minority” status because they consider it anti-equality. They would prefer that when we mention Oprah we don’t need to say “African American” or Black. If we actually had equality or sameness, it would no longer matter.

      If we perpetuate our “different-ness,” instead of sharing our same-ness, we distance ourselves from equality. I suppose equality “utopia” would be we all celebrate the fact that our “minor” differences are not that significant.

      Somewhere in this conversation there seems to be an idea worth debating. I haven’t got a grasp of it yet, but I agree that the single approach of demanding equal rights doesn’t actually deliver what we really want – equality.

      Although I have not been “out” a long time, I still fear the occasional rejection I feel when some people know I am gay. The shame and residual stigma of “homosexual” has lessened, but it isn’t gone. I suspect it is much worse for a younger person that continues to fear the ridicule of his or her peers. What appears to be absent in our Community is an orchestrated effort to end the shame and to make it easier for someone to declare they are gay. To that end – laws and marching around demanding fairness seem completely ineffective.

      I hope people committed to our equality have the courage to continue this important conversation. It’s an idea that seems to be worth at least our consideration, if not our support.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 3:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ ExtraBatteries:

      I asked: The topic is: Equality – How and When? Would you like to contribute?

      You responded: what do i give a damn if some townsfolk like me?

      You never used the word “Equality.” Perhaps you might want to consider that “equal rights” and “equality” are not the same thing. But, you can keep on screaming and demanding – all the while believing it helps. It actually doesn’t. If you have evidence to the contrary, please share.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 3:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      equal rights under the law are not the same thing as equality in a society. that is evident. right now we have neither; one of them can be attained through congress within years, the other will take decades.

      so you need me to argue on behalf of the self-evident? please… you havent even begun to address a single point ive made. youre still smiling at yourself in the mirror and disregarding anyones thoughts that dont fit your tiny world view. your attempt at arguing is boring, its like talking to a tv.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 3:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      “”Equal under the Law” is irrelevant if people believe we are not equal. That is setting the bar very low. All honest LGBT people want equality – not laws.”

      what do i care if my coworkers like me if the law allows an employer to fire me because im gay? what do i care if the townsfolk would condemn my lifestyle when i cant even live in america in the first place because my binational relationship is blocked by doma? and show them we are just like them, equal and normal when we cant even adopt children?

      im all for changing the hearts and minds, but laws prevent the very acts from existing in the first place.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 3:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      I have suggested that our “equality” is the goal – not “equal rights” laws, that you believe force people to behave.

      You said trying to achieve “equality” would take decades and yet you offer no evidence of that. You also suggest that “equal rights” are obtainable “through Congress in a matter of years.” really? Two-thirds of the US Senate is opposed to the repeal of DOMA. It’s almost as bad for ENDA and DADT. For 50 years we have tried to change votes and we couldn’t even get the Hate crimes Law passed affirmatively. It had to be used to hold the Defense Spending Bill hostage.

      Finally, you proclaim: “im all for changing the hearts and minds, but laws prevent the very acts from existing in the first place.”

      Laws do not prevent anything – they punish those who break those laws. They also don’t change hearts and minds, either. The “unfriendly” passage of the Hates Crime Bill has only angered the opposition.

      Changing hearts and minds is the key to our equality. If you are “all for it” then stay in the conversation and figure out how we can do that. It is not being done now and I gather from your comments you recognize the merits.

      It is not necessary to replace one target (equal rights laws) with another (equality), they can support each other. I believe we may need some laws, but ultimately we don’t actually want them – we want equality. If we had equality, we wouldn’t be discussing “equal rights.”

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian NJ
      Brian NJ

      But Obama does have a wonderful magic wand — and it works just find. Barry Putter waved it at the banks, and trillion dollars appeared! Right now he is getting it to reorganize a third of the economy. Nothing wrong with the wand, he just won’t aim it at DADT and DOMA.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian NJ
      Brian NJ

      And all Obama has to it make something disappear, Obashinus terminus! And DADT and DOMA are gone. His other priorities, higher on his to list than gay rights, require much more magic, public option buildings, and a whole new cadre of flying thingamajigs.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Landon Bryce
      Landon Bryce

      In the 1990s, it became impossible to heard in national discourse if you were not a bully. That has abated slightly, but bullying cynicism is still the dominant tone of most political debate in the United States. Also, if you are a member of a minority, your chance of fame increases exponentially if you are willing to attack that minority.

      That is relevant because bullies think victims deserve it. The gay men who have convinced us that hate crimes legislation is bad– Andrew Sullivan and Dan Savage– are bullies who often attack gay people in order to increase their own fame. The gay men trying to bully other people here in to believing this legislation is worthless are not out friends.

      This bill is a good thing for gay people. We need to keep pushing, but we also need to celebrate our victories.

      This is one.

      I’m mad at John Arovosis and others for pushing DADT and DOMA before ENDA. ENDA is what matters most. Hate Crimes legislation matters more to me than DADT, because it will protect people in communities where they do not have support from the a large LBGT community, the people must likely to have hate crimes against them go uninvestigated.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ Landon: F A C T _ C H E C K

      Andrew Sullivan and Dan Savage did not say the Hate Crimes Bill was “bad,” they said “insignificant.” Plus, they way it was passed is very telling – it hardly qualifies as a “victory.”

      Nobody on here has suggested that any legislation is “bad” and nobody is bullying anyone. Get over your angst.

      We have been discussing the difference between “equal rights” and actual “equality.” Please feel free to comment.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:33 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      I have suggested that our “equality” is the goal – not “equal rights” laws, that you believe force people to behave.

      When did I say that? You keep arguing against a wall since you arent listenign to word i’ve said.

      Since when do all laws involve crime? Since when do all laws involve forcing people to do something; I’m specifically citing laws that if passed would ‘allow’ us to do something we are currently unable.

      You said trying to achieve “equality” would take decades and yet you offer no evidence of that.

      wow, what world do you live in? mister mtv over here needs a reality check. shit happens over time, equality doesnt happen overnight. im not goign to debate this, its a fact, not an opinion.

      You also suggest that “equal rights” are obtainable “through Congress in a matter of years.” really? Two-thirds of the US Senate is opposed to the repeal of DOMA. It’s almost as bad for ENDA and DADT. For 50 years we have tried to change votes and we couldn’t even get the Hate crimes Law passed affirmatively.

      i wont bother to debate this either. someone needs to go back and watch some schoolhouse rocks videos about how a bill becomes law. keep rewinding it until you figure out the part where the congress and senate are two different things.

      It had to be used to hold the Defense Spending Bill hostage.

      so? your point being? so now every gay bill has to be passed alone, or attached to a bill that queerty website username andrew personally agrees with? lame.

      Finally, you proclaim: “im all for changing the hearts and minds, but laws prevent the very acts from existing in the first place.”

      Laws do not prevent anything – they punish those who break those laws.

      ill say it again, NOT ALL LAWS EXIST SIMPLY TO PREVENT CRIME. do you even bother reading what i wrote, or are you so blinded by your arrogance that you just type whatever your mad little pea brain is crapping out at that moment.

      They also don’t change hearts and minds, either. The “unfriendly” passage of the Hates Crime Bill has only angered the opposition.

      really? so now you need a law to be passed with the warm embrace of those FUNDAMENTALLY OPPOSED TO ITS EXISTANCE. sweet. you make me type all caps. actually, its because i think youre either an idiot, which was my first and long holding guess, or youre a troll, which makes you a bored idiot.either way there isnt much deviance in the wording.

      Changing hearts and minds is the key to our equality. If you are “all for it” then stay in the conversation and figure out how we can do that. It is not being done now and I gather from your comments you recognize the merits.

      sure, we can start by passing the laws we need to exist on an equal platform. next…

      It is not necessary to replace one target (equal rights laws) with another (equality), they can support each other. I believe we may need some laws, but ultimately we don’t actually want them – we want equality. If we had equality, we wouldn’t be discussing “equal rights.”

      speak for yourself, i want laws changed. you are never ever going to become equal while you are forced to drink from a separate water fountain by law.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:39 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      huh, in this thread i completely agree with you lance…

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ ExtraBatteries:

      In Post 89 you said: “im all for changing the hearts and minds, but laws prevent the very acts from existing in the first place.”

      That was you.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      landon rather…

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      @andrew: yes whats your point? those laws which i stated and you ignored – prevent being able to marry, adopt, immigrate, be employed, serve in the military, etc…

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Josh
      Josh [Different person #1 using similar name]

      Too soon to declare a winner here, but ExtraBatteries actually said: “the congress and senate are two different things.

      No, the Senate is part of the Congress. In fact, nothing get by them, making the +60 Senators that are Anti-LGBT a really, really big problem.

      If you don’t get that, raise your hand and I will give you a Wiki address.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      and andrew, in what world are you discussing anything? you never respond to anything anyone types, you just pick out one line that suites your needs and deliver it back in bold with a worthless one line retort.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Gay Numbers
      The Gay Numbers

      I see people are still debating the sophists. Here’s a piece of advice to the sophist: when we pass all these laws you say do not matter- I think you should follow the convictions to the letter by avoiding use of the laws. If you are fired from your jobs due to being gay, don’t use ENDA. If your partner lives in another, don’t move them here when the law changes. If marriage equality happens, don’t get married under the law since it does not matter. Of course, we know you hypocrites will be first in line saying you were with us all along.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Landon Bryce
      Landon Bryce

      Andrew:

      You think telling me I have no right to celebrate is not bullying?

      Your dishonest attack here continues your bullying approach with others. Sullivan has been attacking hate crimes legislation– long with a woman’s right to a safe abortion– for over a decade with screeds like this:

      “The real reason for the invention of hate crimes was a hard-left critique of conventional liberal justice and the emergence of special interest groups which need boutique legislation to raise funds for their large staffs and luxurious buildings.”

      Savage is less consistent on this issue, but rarely lets a chance to kick the gay community in general in the teeth pass him by.

      They are bad, bullying people.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Landon Bryce
      Landon Bryce

      Thanks, Duracell– I agree with much of what you have said here as well.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      Scroll up ExtraB – we have been discussing the Hate Crimes Law and other Laws that make us a minority or “protected class.” and you contributed: laws prevent the very acts from existing in the first place.” How so? I think you need to explain that.

      Please explain how a “law” will prevent a “hate crime” from actually happening? Or other laws intended to punish discrimination? In fact, they simply make the bad guys work harder, that’s all. Instead of being fired for being “gay” they can pick one of dozens of other “reasons.”

      Believing laws actually change behavior or anyone’s beliefs is completely unsubstantiated.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 4:56 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      @andrew: i repeated now two times for you, i said the law prevents marriage, immigration, employment etc. i never brought up hate crime laws in regards to that statement. and who are you talking to, who said hate crime laws would change behavior? no one argued that, or at least i never have. you never actually responded to anything i said in the last posts, just your one liners, im bored, youre a lowly little troll, so f- it, im just ignoring you now. you dont read what i wrote, so why bother to respond?

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      Extra, this is the era of google, wikipedia, blogs, YouTube, twitter, and rampant celebrity/pop culture obsession. And you think that public opinion CAN’T be changed in a very short time span? That cultural conversations can’t be redirected literally overnight?

      Or you think we just can’t apply that opportunity to gays? It’s absurd.

      As for the Senate and Congress being two different things… Try and get all of your laws passed in the House of Reps, while completely ignoring the Senate entirely. Go for it. See how quick it gets to the President’s desk. First thing you’ll find is that the House is almost as set against us as the Senate and – OMGZ – that means the whole congress! Second, you’ll find – woah big surprise – those politicians are not going to be changing their minds! Because of their own beliefs, or because of the beliefs of the people who elected them. When 70% of a pol’s state says “don’t you vote for those queers,” that politician is going to have to have a real personal revelation to vote for something like gay marriage. And just for fairy tales and fun, let’s imagine that once upon a time you get that law passed through the Senate (Part of the Congress!). How many days do you think it will be until a) those brave politician’s constituents are electing someone who will vote the way they want to get that thing repealed, or b) lawsuits start getting filed by civil servants who don’t want to officiate gay weddings (see Louisiana for details). And that’s one of them crimeless laws! Can you smell the equality?

      But you just want us to focus on the laws so that what… we get some trickle down tolerance, just because the Law says so? How long do you expect that to take? Should we measure our equality in deaths?

      So this is how democracy works – laws are there, and perhaps they’re comforting. But unless they have public support behind them, they don’t change a whole lot. Because the public either won’t follow the laws, will resent the laws and their beneficiaries, or will fight like hell to get rid of those laws (see Abortion for details). But if you have public support, then – wonder of wonders – you have the votes you need to pass your laws. You have the pressure of numbers to place on politicians, or the power to elect new ones. And the support is already there, so you don’t have to panic about enforcement or repeal. And best of all the laws would be received as natural, not imposed. Life would actually change. Now. Not decades later.

      Aren’t civics lessons fun? Beat that, SHR.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      So, are you anticipating the repeal of DOMA by our Congress? Then same-sex marriage approval in the remaining 44 States? Is that the Plan?

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:13 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      “Believing laws actually change behavior or anyone’s beliefs is completely unsubstantiated.”

      right, so thats why its so easy for me to cross the border without my passport, those homeland security and border customs and immigration laws really were no impedance.

      of course, banning smoking in restaurants, or state/federal buildings as if that mattered… laws do nothing to influence or dictate behavior.

      and beliefs, well, instating the draft during viet nam, how could that have ever changed anyone beliefs…

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      the UAFA is federal, so is repealing DOMA, they effect federal law. i dont really care about your pessimism regarding the future passage of DOMA. and since when do you have me advocating for a single approach to gay rights? you infer that my statement on laws somehow means i believe laws are the only front on which to fight for lgbt equality. i will not argue a point i did not make simply for your convenience.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ Landon:

      Andrew Sullivan said: “The real reason for the invention of hate crimes was a hard-left critique of conventional liberal justice and the emergence of special interest groups which need boutique legislation to raise funds for their large staffs and luxurious buildings.”

      He was referring to HRC and others that profit off our fight for equality. He said why it was invented, but never said it was “bad.” He has many times said HRC was ineffective and recently called for Solmonese’s resignation.

      So, stop suggesting anyone is bullying you (you do have your new Hate Crimes – relax) and be more honest.

      Most every commentary I have read said the Hate Crimes Bill was mostly “symbolic” and mostly insignificant. Unless you are working for Gay Inc. and trying to generate more donations, please try to remain objective.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:23 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Drake
      Drake

      You Queerty guys are really cynics. Let’s give some credit where credit is due. You all are probably fortunate enough to have never been gay-bashed. I bet if you were so victimized, that you would be glad that there is some federal statement disapproving of such acts.
      The federal legislation is very important in the many states that have no gay rights protections under state laws, or in any state in which enforcement of existing laws on behalf of gays is lax. If someone is gay-bashed in Mississippi, and the local cops do not wish to help a gay man so victimized, there now is a federal option that the local US Attorney may prosecute in such cases.
      All of us would like to snap our fingers and see full equality, but that is not the reality, and you guys come off a bit petulant and spoiled in your lack of appreciation for the realities of gay history, as well as in your ungraciousnesss in not complimenting allies such as the current Administration and Congress for getting this done.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • dontblamemeivotedforhillary
      dontblamemeivotedforhillary

      Best thing they could do is Tax the Church, especially those which don’t separate Church and State (Mormons!) when putting their hands out for non-profit faith-based services and land tax exemptions! Hell, we pay for their life-style!

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries


      Extra, this is the era of google, wikipedia, blogs, YouTube, twitter, and rampant celebrity/pop culture obsession. And you think that public opinion CAN’T be changed in a very short time span? That cultural conversations can’t be redirected literally overnight?

      i never said that, you must have the same tunnel vision disease as andrew. equality does not happen overnight. the role of women and of racial tolerance have and will continue to take years. youtube isnt going to flip a switch and make people over 50 more tolerant.

      As for the Senate and Congress being two different things… Try and get all of your laws passed in the House of Reps, while completely ignoring the Senate entirely. Go for it.

      i was pointing out that they are not synonymous. squares and rectangles people. square and rectangles…

      and what do i care about your opinion, its opinion. you dont have a time machine. most lgbt people couldnt have dreamed we would have come this far since the 80s. since reagan. of course there is opposition, of course there is work to be done. think rfk.

      So this is how democracy works – laws are there, and perhaps they’re comforting. But unless they have public support behind them, they don’t change a whole lot. Because the public either won’t follow the laws, will resent the laws and their beneficiaries, or will fight like hell to get rid of those laws (see Abortion for details).

      which brings up a point, lawrence v texas was supreme court, row v wade, supreme court, this is another part of democracy. and there is also the possibility that equal marriage will be implemented by the justices.

      But if you have public support, then – wonder of wonders – you have the votes you need to pass your laws. You have the pressure of numbers to place on politicians, or the power to elect new ones. And the support is already there, so you don’t have to panic about enforcement or repeal. And best of all the laws would be received as natural, not imposed. Life would actually change. Now. Not decades later.

      Aren’t civics lessons fun? Beat that, SHR.

      sure, in an ideal world. but i am not withdrawing my support for laws to be changed, enacted, repealed, etc. just because public support isnt with me.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      haha, andrew is crying ‘please try to remain objective’ riiiiiiight andrew…. you keep doing your part buddy…

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ Drake: You said: “All of us would like to snap our fingers and see full equality, but that is not the reality.”

      Who suggested “snapping our fingers?”

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      @andrew: who suggests you suggested drake said “snapping our fingers?”

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ ExtraBatteries: You said: “i am not withdrawing my support for laws to be changed, enacted, repealed, etc. just because public support isnt with me.”

      Who suggested you do that? It is your failure to see the advantage of changing “public support” (or opinion) that is troubling. If the LGBT Community changed public opinion – you wouldn’t need laws to protect you – you’d be equal.

      The bigger challenge for all of us is to create equality by changing minds and enrolling support from fair-minded fellow citizens. Maybe that’s the more difficult path, but why would you totally avoid it in favor of laws? Laws didn’t end racism or sexism – where do you get your confidence? It seems ill-placed, unless you’re content with waiting another 50 years fro equality. Some of us want to do everything we can – now. the sooner, the better.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:46 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      @andrew: no one suggested i say that. i thought it on my very own! maybe you can try sometime!

      you are right, if only all the gays banded together and did one big carebear stare across the 50 states, then i wouldnt need equal protection, because my heart would be so filled with love that i would shit pink sparkles.

      i forgot, whatever you think i said is what i said! so youre right, im totally content with waiting 50 years for equality. thats what i said. i also think youre right, blacks and women arent equal, because they forgot to make everyone love them before they got civil rights. its makes so much more sense to me now, thanks andrew. if only there were more people who could not read anything i wrote and decide my talking points for me!

      Oct 29, 2009 at 5:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Drake
      Drake

      Extrabatteries- you are talking about the need for public support, and this is very true.
      As I have said many times before, no matter what your position is on same sex marriage, it is the one issue that has gotten all of American talking about the gay agenda, and winning some progress for us. Same sex marriage has been on every front page of every newspaper in America, on Oprah and every other talk show, and all over the net. Somehow, some straights became more open and sympathetic (supportive) of the gay agenda because they could identify some with gays on the issue of marriage. Gays did not seem like they were from Mars (or Key West) anymore, they felt that they understood us. The marriage issue is helping all the LGBT agenda move forward, including repeal of DOMA, repeal of Don’t ask, Don’t tell (DADT), and ENDA (employment non-discrimination Act. This is why it’s important for people to send a few bucks to help the efforts on the marriage referendum in Maine, and/or volunteer for their phone bank (which you can assist with from any phone in the USA), and also help with the referendum in Washington State. Action and money are needed, not just blogging!

      Oct 29, 2009 at 6:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ ExtraBatteries:

      Way too many sarcasm pills and you were doing so well. Get some rest.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 6:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      @andrew: you werent. you never actually addressed anything i said; how very un-constructive of you. total demon seed offspring of internet forums.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 6:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chance
      Chance

      @Excess batteries – ever think that maybe nothing you said was worth addressing? Done, and done.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 10:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brian
      Brian

      @ AllBatteriesNoMotor:

      I think if you actually made a point, people would respond. But, you don’t actually say anything. Plus, could you please find your *shift* key and try using it? I know it’s hard, but come on, please try.

      Oct 29, 2009 at 11:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Orpheus_lost
      Orpheus_lost

      @Andrew and Josh (Note the lack of first grade insults in the title)

      If you both want to think that you’re not equal to straight people I’m not going to stop you. There will always be some silly queers who actually enjoy being beaten up by the str8 boys, that’s entirely your privilege. I’m just not going to argue it any longer because its completely useless to try to make you understand that what other people think doesn’t decide whether you’re equal or not.

      Enjoy your self loathing. Those of us without the inferiority complexes will enjoy our equality.

      Oct 30, 2009 at 12:45 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andrew
      Andrew [Different person #2 using similar name]

      @ Orpheus_Lost:

      You idea that we must simply “believe we are equal” and we will be equal is juvenile. If the majority of Americans believed we were equal – we wouldn’t be trying to create our equality.

      All of the thoughtful comments here recognize that simple fact. It’s even beyond juvenile to suggest that anyone here said we believed we were not equal.

      So, if you want to engage in conversation – please try to be honest and keep it at more mature level.

      Oct 30, 2009 at 12:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • extrabatteries
      extrabatteries

      buahahaha right andrew. right, dude, no one is swallowing your pill. youre a loser, through and through. im dont with it, i wasted way too much time wondering if you had anything to offer. you dont. wallow in your mud.

      Oct 30, 2009 at 1:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Josh
      Josh [Different person #1 using similar name]

      More fine commentary EXTRABATTERIES.

      You know, I think if you actually did some thinking you might come up with something to say. Insulting may be fun, but insight is much better. Stop blaming others for your comments – or lack there of.

      Oct 30, 2009 at 1:32 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Keith Kimmel
      Keith Kimmel

      No. 66 · Attmay

      You feel quite similar to me, then. Many people think I am a far right wing Republican when they hear me talk about taxes, privacy or states rights. Then they hear me talk about queer rights, public transit or the environment and they lump me in with Democrats.

      In all honesty, I cannot stand either party. The reasons are many, but the manner in which Democrats use the gay community disgusts me. They are our best friends when they need votes, once they have what they want, they are done with us, throwing an occasional bone to us not withstanding. And they stood idly by while Bush raped this country, most of the time complicit in it.

      As long as we are stupid enough to continue to play the game, they’ll keep using us. People need to wake the fuck up. Both parties have a few good ideas between them, but neither party is right and the other wrong and they are both manipulative, cunning, calculating, out of touch and deceitful.

      I vote for a specific candidates in races where I believe someone worthy of support exists. I skip the other races and cast no vote at all. In Oklahoma, if you write a name in, your ballot is invalidated. We don’t do write ins here.

      Oct 30, 2009 at 9:10 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Miguel
      Miguel

      I do not wait for anyone of us equality. They are never gonna change. There is a proverbs,you cannot straighten the crooked tree,can you? You won’t. Because we have no magic or powers to straighten the crooked tree.So, I will not waste time with anyone. I believe that God loves all of us. If God hates homosexuals, then God must hate everybody. I have never heard the gospel saying that God hates. Nope. The gospel says that he who loves God and hates his brother,and says he loves,God is a liar. For no murderer has no kingdom of heaven. They have lost the ticket to go heaven. It is written: All liars, murderers and all who love evil and do any kind of abomination will be cast out to the furnace of eternal lake of fire. Because God command us to love and not judge. As Jesus Christ,said,He who is free from sin, cast out the first stone. He turned to the prostitute and asked her sin no more. Jesus came to die for us and not condemn. Jesus demand to save and gave all the shepherds who are pastors to save and take care of the sheep. Because Jesus loves the homosexual. God is not respecter of persons. God will require of all what the pastors account. Every male or female is responsible to love his brother or sister. Do not confuse with the fact of love that is homosexual act. No, no more excuses. Love is different than lust, sex, or fornication. Every pastor is responsible and each person is responsible before God to keep the commandments to save souls and not lose souls. Losing souls is killing people. God has never commanded to kill. It is written: Thou shalt not kill. It does not matter. If some people say that they are not agree with the commandments. Well, they are against. God. Because all the laws and the Constitution is based of the ten commandments. None is superior. Only God is perfect and superior. All of us are imperfect. That’s it. We have to recognize and admit we are not perfect and only God is perfect.

      Sep 2, 2011 at 10:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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