Saturday, February 25, 2006

WaPo: The Anti-Gay Agenda

Gov. Timothy Kaine (D) of my new home state of Virginia issued an executive order banning discrimination against gays and lesbians in state employment. Attorney General Robert F. McDonnell (R) has issued an opinion that the order violates the state constitution since the state supreme court has never given gay people protected status and the state legislature has voted against non-discrimination legislation that applies to gay people. Kaine's order, according to McDonnell, oversteps his constitutional boundaries and usurps the power of the legislature. For now, Kaine's order holds as McDonnell's opinion holds no legal weight. However, this is probably only the beginning of challenges to the order.

This is also the type of incident which proves that the Republicans aren't just "protecting marriage," but rather promoting the wholesale oppression of LGBT people. The major gay rights organizations, from the early 90's, have failed to do anything substantial to stem the tide of anti-gay legislation or to assist in the passage of vital pro-gay laws.

So, the religious right and other social conservatives (many of them Southern Democrats) have successfully passed anti-gay law after anti-gay law, from the Defense of Marriage Act and constitutional amendments barring gay marriage to laws stripping custody rights from gay parents and denying gay adoptions to barring civil rights legislation for gays and lesbians to overturning domestic partnership protections. They have also succeeded in thwarting attempts to protect LGBT people from discrimination in employment, housing, and education and adding LGBT people to hate crimes legislation. Even otherwise popular prospective laws, such as the anti-bullying bills proposed in a variety of state legislatures were voted down because they would protect gay people.

As a political strategy, this has been horribly productive. Many pundits argue that Bush owes his presidency and the Republicans their legislative majority to the scapegoating of gays and lesbians. Considering that they managed to paint John Kerry as pro-gay marriage despite the fact that he was against it, the Republican manipulation of national homophobia has been successful indeed.

The major gay rights organizations traded success for access in the early 90's, spending more time than Monica Lewinski on their knees before Bill Clinton and other lying Democrats who made big promises until they got what they wanted from their favorite house homos. Even after their beloved masters showed they were working against LGBT interests, gay rights "leaders" continued to bow and scrape and fawn adoringly all over these homophobes in gay-friendly clothes. To this day, the perpetually self-deluded will swear Clinton was a great president for gay people despite the fact that his passage of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue" and the Defense of Marriage Act made things far worse for gay people than they would have been if he'd just sat on his hands for eight years.

And people have the nerve to tell us not to be angry! So, I ask: If they took away your freedom, wouldn't you be angry? If they stomped on your rights, wouldn't you be outraged? Wouldn't you rather die fighting to be free than live accepting oppression as your lot? I know I would and I am.

I'm angry and outraged and I'm not afraid to show it. I will not bow and scrape before my "masters" in the vain hope that they'll toss me a handful of crumbs. I am nobody's house homo. I am definitely nobody's field dyke. I have spent my entire adult life fighting. Every speech, panel, petition, protest, article, and personal encounter has been about proving that I will not accept oppression, not mine or anyone else's. My humanity is not a matter of your opinion. My freedom is neither yours to give nor yours to take away.

The house homos like to jump all over lesbians like me, tell us that we shouldn't be so open about our sexual orientation or our anger because "straight people don't want to hear that." Ask me how much I care. I have absolutely no concern whatsoever about what straight people want to hear. I know what they need to hear, what they're going to hear: Your privilege has been purchased at the cost of my freedom, my rights, and my basic human dignity. That's a price I'm just not going to pay any more. So, deal with it.

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