Both Obama and HRC Have ‘Road Maps’ to Equality. They Just Won’t Let You See Them


“I don’t see them dragging their feet. But where the LGBT community is feeling frustration is that the road map and timetable have not been made as clear to them.” That’s HRC chief Joe Solmonese explaining away concerns from many LGBTs about the Obama administration doing precisely nothing to engender equality. It’s funny that Solmonese talks about this “road map” toward equality, because while he faults the president for not sharing it, Solmonese himself won’t tell you about it, either.

“Sometimes there is simply the need for reassurance from the president,” Solmonese continues in an interview. “I’ve seen a great deal less frustration since the president spoke on June 29 [the Stonewall anniversary] and recommitted to [our] issues. And the president signed the memo expanding the nondiscrimination policy for federal employees and calling on Congress to give him a bill extending healthcare benefits to domestic partners. It’s probably as frustrating to him and his administration that things are not moving as quickly as we would like.”


First: LOL. Obama is frustrated?

Second: This “reassurance from the president” Solmonese speaks of is, indeed, something we’re after. If we can’t have our rights in the next 24 hours, then when? What’s being done, specifically, by the White House to help us along? What is this … road map?

We don’t know! But Joe says he does!: “With a community as diverse as the LGBT community, there is little one can do that isn’t going to be met with criticism from somebody. A lot of that has to do with frustration of being woefully behind in securing a fundamental set of benefits and a fundamental sense of equality. But I also have a very clear road map and a plan of how this is going to get done.”

You do, Joe? YOU HAVE THE ROAD MAP? Then please, upload it to Google Maps, turn it into an iPhone app, or simply, you know, post it on HRC’s own damn blog and SHARE IT WITH THE CLASS.

If Obama has the road map, and Joe has a copy of it, why don’t the rest of us? It’s because of this sorry collusion between the White House and Gay Inc. that so many gays are furious. If we’re supposed to turn to orgs like HRC to do our bidding (and take our cash), why can’t they at least afford us the same transparency we demand from, say, Obama?

Solmonese’s silence only makes the inevitable future that much more frustrating: When we finally secure our rights, through appealing to lawmakers and by supporting grassroots gay activists targeting the local levels, it will be HRC who claims the victory. A victory they will have “won” by refusing to participate in true activism.

No wonder some HRC supporters are so fed up with Solmonese & Co.’s brand of activism that they’re fleeing, cash in hand.

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  • M Shane

    Of course stupid, if you(the religious Right) knew what they were doing you could plan your blocking strategy.
    We all know that Obama has to keep his plan under guard until he can pop it on uso as not to derange his other items and so as not to give you information you need to fuck with him.
    First you complain because he doesn’t do something illegal to back the gay agenda, then when he has something you complauin because you don’t get advance notice for what-to block him.
    Queerty scores again.(dimwit points).for God.

  • Brian

    HRC does NOT have a “road map” or anything approaching that. If they did, sharing it with us would actually help them. We are more than frustrated – we’re pissed at the inaction and arrogance, especially from Slow-Joe at HRC. He thinks he’s an insider and “power player” but he doesn’t realize WE need to empower him and HRC. Perhaps we could if they actually had any ideas.


  • Elroy

    Obama’s plan is to get himself re-elected. He’s not really interested in gay people’s issues.

  • Nunya Bizness

    Interesting… I’m an NC transplant who, long ago, withdrew heavy support of the HRC agenda — given the “Equal Rights for Gay White Men Only” stance that the local representatives of HRC consistently take.

    While I continue to support “The Cause” (and am always willing to partner with HRC reps for specific initiatives); I no longer throw my $$ at them like I used to (one year, because of my heavy involvement — I gave as much as 5% of my yearly income).

    I hope that Joe now sees what a fickle, whiny, entitled and individually self-focused crowd he represents. “What do you mean, I can’t BUY equality?! I’m paying you!! I want it NOW!!”.

    I just hope the impatience and anger that I see boiling over in the “mainstream” gay community doesn’t lead to a withdrawal of key support JUST before any progress is achieved. The outcome could be tragically “House of Mirth” in it’s consequence. Abandonment just before the reward…

  • InExile

    I do not believe Obama has a plan or road map at all. Look how he has handled the health care debate, it’s a mess because he did not stick his neck out, SHOW SOME LEADERSHIP, and create his own plan. The same exact thing happened with his original plan for gays, he copied Hillary’s plan and made a few changes so he could call it his own. And what happened to his plan, well it becomes smaller by the day with the erasing of the DOMA repeal from his website and the scaled back new version under the civil rights section.

    This man has no plan for gays, we are just being strung along and whoever thinks he does needs to stop drinking the Kool Aide.

    For some gays waiting for their equal rights is no big deal, they have their home, their careers, their friends, their families, their favorite restaurants and clubs, and a life. For other gays the lack of equality has destroyed their lives. Don’t think your life is so safe because when you have no rights anything can happen to you when you least expect it. Your life can be turned up side down overnight and there is nothing you can do about it.

  • Andrew

    @Nunya Bizness: I think you missed the point of the article. You said: “What do you mean, I can’t BUY equality?! I’m paying you!! I want it NOW!!”

    None of us have any confidence in HRC or Gay Inc. BECAUSE they DON’T HAVE A STRATEGY OR PLAN.

    It is absurd that we don’t have any idea how to win, how much it will cost or how long it will take.

    We are idiots.

    HRC is a “group of idiots.”

  • Nunya Bizness


    I agree with that sentiment, Andrew! LOL

    I was aiming my observation at the broad assumption that — since no concrete plan (and associated numbers) have been personally delivered to Gay Community — then the plan couldn’t possibly exist… and that Joe S. has some reason for colluding with the government in covering over the absence of planning.

    Secondly — the article further asserts the assumption that, without publication & deliver of the plan, folks will start “fleeing, cash in hand…” That does confirm the notion that we’ve somehow paid for a service that was not adequately provided.

    I’m not giving Obama and Joe S. a “get-out-of-responsibility” pass by any means… but that above assumption doesn’t respect the probability that The Holy Plan incorporates some waiting time and probably a whole heap of discretion.

    When you think about it… we have a new President that has had to quickly act to reverse the country financially… and now has an uphill battle in regards to healthcare AND gay rights (both of which require a total shift in thinking, inclination of acceptance and living for the entire country). No wonder that this shit has to be properly “queued”… and some of it might have to be kept “under wraps” until the timing is proper.

    I don’t know about you (I support the current President… but take issue with him like I would any politician) — and even with that stance, I didn’t expect ALL the need for change to be effectively addressed within the first year of his administration. I’m obviously the only person on THAT page, however!

  • wondermann

    How do you know there’s not a plan? Some of you are so bitter it’s sad.

  • schlukitz

    Having lived through WWI, I can’t hep but wonder if the D-Day Invasion of Normany was under as strict wraps as the obtaining of full equality for American LGBT Citizens?

    Just sayin’…

  • InExile


  • wondermann

    @InExile: no, I have to disagree with you.

    He is the right one, hopefully you will see that… soon.

  • InExile

    @wondermann: I hope he is also but I have little confidence. From the beginning he has distanced himself from gays. I want to have hope but he is not giving us any signs as in action. Enough talk.

  • schlukitz


    He is the right one, hopefully you will see that… soon.

    It says so in your crystal ball and your Tarot cards, right?

  • edgyguy1426

    @wondermann: I don’t think it’s bitter so much as angry for being kept in the dark. And this argument that ‘we don’t want the plan to become known because then the religious right will know how to fight it.’ There is power in numbers.. look what happened with ‘People power’ in the Philipines.. the people got behind it and forced a change, How can we be an active participant in this map if we don’t have the key? It’s kind of patronizing almost. Sure there are a lot of things we can and are doing now,but this ‘Go away, we got this covered’ attitude is disheartening..

  • Brian

    @wondermann: The right one, huh? That’s naive. There is no right one, no magical politician that’s going to save us. We are hated, not oppressed. If we don’t end the hate, we’ll never be equal.

    So, you can believe in politics (like people did with Clinton), while the rest of us get to work on the problem: ending the “wrong” of homosexual. Religion did that. Here’s some Presidential proof:

    “As a Christian I am constantly wrestling with my Faith and my regard and concern for gays and lesbians.”

    Barack Obama

    These religious beliefs continue to win ALL contests concerning homosexuals – we have NEVER won a popular vote. The beliefs are the problem, not the President.

  • timncguy

    If there is a “road map” or “plan” and Joe Knows it, but can’t reveal it out of concern that it would screw it up, the Joe should SHUT THE HELL UP about it.

    There is nothing MORE FRUSTRATING than someone running around proclaiming “I know something you don’t know. And, I’m not at liberty to tell you either”.

    Joe, if you can’t share the details, the just SHUT UP!!!

  • Pop Snap

    The most we’ll get is a repeal of DADT before 2012. We got the Hate Crimes act passed, but that was mostly due to the House and Senate and not Obama.

    I wish we could have a pro-gay Republican (yes, there are many of them out there; not every Republican is a bible-thumping redneck even though 60% of them are), who would get nominated and actually get shit done. Because the Repubs actually follow through on their promises and take no shit, unlike the Democrats who have historically been sorta sissy-ish on their policies. Just take Bill Clinton- a very smart, intelligent, and well-spoken man who knows what he’s doing even to this day. I do honestly believe he did support us at one time; but the prejudices of the 90’s beat out the political correctness of the 90’s and he signed DADT and DOMA for fear of backlash from the much more powerful Religious Right.

    Now, in 2009, we have 15% of the country being nonreligious, we have the vast majority of Hollywood being pro-gay (ellen degenrous, lyndsay lohan, brad pitt, pete wentz, aretha franklin, tyra banks, adam lambert nearly winning American Idol, need I go on?), young people not even caring if someone is gay or not (trust me, I’m a senior in high school and I have yet to be made fun of to my face), and tons of shows with gay characters (Degrassi, Queer Eye, The Ellen Show, Six Feet Under, TrueBlood), 400-some openly gay politicans from local levels on up, gay groups at thousands of colleges and almost in driving distance of everyone who is gay, 800,000 married gay couples. Miss Cali was stripped of her crown for stating her opnion (which was wrong IMHO, but it still happened and shows how far we’ve come).
    Just look at the massive turnout of the prop 8 protests. 49% of people voted for us, 70% of young voters and 90% of nonreligious people, when just 20 years ago gay rights were being compared to penguin rights.

    He has *no* excuse for his inaction. None whatsoever. He is a member of the UCC for crying out fuckin’ loud! Ridiculous.

  • Andrew

    @Pop Snap: Non-Religious + Spiritual is close to 1/3. The key to redefining homosexuals is the “Religious” crowd @ 2/3.

    In my personal experience I do not believe that half of them actually take religion seriously. We NEED them to join us – that is the only thing that will make a difference. We need to be acceptable to a majority of the people. Politicians can’t do that – we must.

  • Andrew

    @Pop Snap: And the UCC still makes homosexuality wrong. Look it up. I have tried for years to get them to change their official position – they won’t.

    You are STILL WRONG at any UCC Church. That’s bull-shit. Christian bull-shit.

  • Brian

    Just STOP giving HRC and Obama our money. That’s all. They are only interested in collecting money. Stop it.

  • LangLangBlows


    Excuse me, but did you say you lived through WWI?

  • LangLangBlows


    Oh , your dumbass meant II, still that would explain a lot.

  • schlukitz


    Yes, I did. I was 9 years old when the war ended in 1945.

  • schlukitz

    Oops, my error. Just went back and checked my post. I meant to type WWII. LOL

  • deoxyribonucleicacid


    So that would have made you how old when Dark Victory came out?

  • deoxyribonucleicacid

    That should be Obamas slogan, Dark victory

    “I’m blind..help me beyotches get to the promised land”

  • schlukitz


    Oh , your dumbass meant II, still that would explain a lot.

    And perhaps you’d like to explain that charming comment?

    What crawled up your ass and died?

  • schlukitz


    Bette Davis made Dark Victory in 1939. I was three years old then.

    Excellent movie, btw. One of her best, if you are a Bette Davis fan.

  • Robert, NYC


    Yes, I agree, my choice would have been Dennis Kucinich, a true progressive, but this gullible electorate is not for the kind of change that Kucinich envisaged, far more than Obama’s version of change. Kucinich’s version was far more progressive and far reaching, in fact radical. This is basically a conservative country where religion is allowed free reign to meddle in the political system. Remove that and we might see some real progress.

    Politicians whose religious beliefs cloud the issues should not be allowed to run for public office. Why is it that only in America, anyone running for office eventually has to declare a religious belief system, what is the relevance and quite frankly, who cares? No other modern western country considers this a factor. It should be banned. Either we have state religion or we don’t and if we don’t, then why are these people allowed to influence the outcome of equality legislation? Their denominations pay no income or property taxes, they also receive reduced utility rates at our expense. They should be barred from politics altogether. If they want a say, compel them to pay their fair share of taxes or STFU and stay out of it if they value freedom of religion. They should not receive any special rights either, its time we had this debate at the national level.

  • Brian

    @Robert, NYC: It’s the “beliefs” that prevent us from gaining equality. It isn’t just politicians. Gays and lesbians have NEVER won a popular vote because of those beliefs. Unless we reject those beliefs we sanction the hatred and discrimination the create.

    Separation of Church and State, even if honored, won’t separate the beliefs from the believer. That’s our challenge.

    We must end the religious definition of homosexuals. We must reject those beliefs. Slavery was a religious lie that we rejected, the lie about homosexuals is next.

    We must learn to put Equality BEFORE Religion or we will still be hated. We can never be hated and equal.

  • Andrew

    From those hard-working HRC advocates in today’s email titled “NO MORE WAITING: (Really, that’s the Subject)

    [ A lot of you have asked me: When are we going to see LGBT equality become a higher priority?

    When will the excuses given by far too many in Congress give way to action?

    The answer is becoming clear: not until we make our voices heard. And if we wait any longer, we’ll lose the unprecedented momentum we have now.

    So we’ve launched an aggressive “No Excuses” campaign to put pressure on Congress… but we can’t make it happen without you.

    That’s why today, HRC is kicking off our final 2009 membership drive to raise $200,000 by August 20 so we can fund this major effort. We need you with us, Andrew.

    Make a membership gift of $35 or more today – and we’ll send you a FREE static cling HRC sticker as a thank you! ]

    More money. More money. More money.

    For $35 I get a “FREE” static cling HRC sticker. How is that Free? These idiots have only one thing on their minds – money.




  • Bill Perdue

    @Pop Snap: The hate crimes law, for now, is still in purgatory, the same dangerous position it was when it previously passed both houses in 2007.

    Kennedy and Reid attached it a war spending act and then quietly dropped it so that Democratic presidential candidates like Hillary Clinton and Obama could pursue their pandering agenda.

    We’ll just have to wait and see if they ditch it this time too.

  • Bill Perdue

    @Robert, NYC: Hi Robert. You’re right that Kucinich is better than Clinton, Obama and the other right wingers who run the Democratic (sic) Party. But not by much. I think that if Kucinich wanted to be a real progressive he’d quit and run independently, but that would mean an end to corporate funding in the form of ‘campaign contributions’, ‘speakers fees’ and other corporate bribes.

    The Democrats, like their Republican cousins are mired in obligations to corporations. Obama got his from big Pharma and financial giants like Goldman-Sachs. He repaid his debts by scuttling socialized medicine – single payer – and handing out trillions to the looter rich. Reid is a tool of the gambling industry and Pelosi is rich in her own right. Perhaps the worst of them is Clinton, who got her money from war contractors, the nice folks who make white phosphorus napalm for use on children from Palestine to Pakistan.

    “It should be no surprise that the majority of the elected denizens on Capitol Hill are millionaires and multimillionaires, so they are not going to support regular Americans but other millionaires like themselves.
    While typical, hardworking Americans are struggling to make ends meet and experiencing lower wages and benefits, these millionaires in Congress got 13% richer in 2007. The Senate especially is truly the millionaires club with a median net worth of $1.7 million.

    “Their (Congresse’s) collective wealth grew by 13 percent last year, leaving them in better shape than most Americans to make it through an economic downturn, according to a new analysis of personal financial reports.

    “Overall, nearly two of every three senators are millionaires. That includes presidential candidates Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill. In the House, 39 percent of all members belong to the exclusive club.

    “In the House of Representatives, Rep. Jane Harman, D-Calif., ranks No. 1, with $397 million, followed by Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., with $343 million. Rep Robin Hayes, R-N.C., ranks third, with $173.4 million. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., ranks sixth, with $62 million.”


    Common Dreams reports that

    “The US Congress, the domed bastion of democracy in the capital of capitalism, abounds with deep-pocketed politicians whose fortunes have made the legislative branch of government a millionaire’s club. The American greenback is bipartisan, filling the pockets of liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans without discrimination.”

    Government is a con game.

  • Brian

    @Andrew: If HRC sent me a “Plan For Equality – Now” for my $35 that might make some sense.

    Where’s the Plan Joe?

  • schlukitz



    Never did. Never will.

    Fund-raising for the “gay cause” is their balliwick and sole reason for existing.

    Give gays their civil-rights and the show is over for Joe and his cronies.

    Hey, they got a 30 years mortgage to pay off after spending $28 mil on their new headquarters in Washington, DC so they can hob-nob and schmooze with their political friends over in Congress and the Senate. It’s great having low friends in high places.

    That’s probably what the latest request for $200K is really for. Or maybe a new indoor swimming pool in the basement to imporove “Worker morale” amongst the HRC employees?

    They are worse bureaucrazy-builders than the federal government.

  • Pop Snap


    Despite myself being nonreligious, I went to a UCC with one of my good friends one day. She is a Jesus freak but is very supportive of me, campaigned for our rights, ect. so I figured I owed her the respect to go with her one day. She introduced me to about twenty gay people, and at the time I was amazed at meeting glbt people other than the token 15 or so in school. The pastor even announced a meeting for gay families later on in the week. Although I told my friend that it wasn’t quite for me, they’re very pro-gay, actually.


  • Brian

    @Pop Snap: “Pro-gay” doesn’t solve anything. They still believe that homosexuality is wrong, sinful and deviant. Ask your friend to get them to declare (in writing) that homosexual is not wrong, sinful and deviant. THAT would be progress.

    So far, UCC has been conning gays and lesbians. They need to undo the wrong that creates all our pain and suffering.

  • Brian

    HRC Joe – we’re still waiting for the Plan.

    We’re not sending any more money until YOU deliver.

    Hurry. It’s important.

  • Brian

    Oh, HRC Joe – it’s the Plan to Win Equality. Surely you have one of those.

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