Wednesday, December 15, 2010

All I Want For Christmas


This has been a great day. I finally finished all my papers, there was pesto sauce in the dining hall at dinner, oh, and THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES VOTED TO REPEAL THE BAN ON OPENLY GAY MEN AND WOMEN SERVING IN THE MILITARY! The final vote was 250-175. I have been incredibly pessimistic about Washington's ability to achieve anything lately, and the extension of the Bush Tax Cuts didn't help the situation. Just in time for Christmas, though, the end of an incredibly backwards and archaic practice is in sight.

We're not out of the woods yet, the bill still has to go through the Senate before getting to President Obama for final sign-off, but it seems completely inconceivable to me that anyone could still support the ban, even after the results of the survey were released. Representative Jared Polis of Colorado summed it up nicely, saying DADT is the only law "in the country that requires people to be dishonest or be fired if they choose to be honest."

In a development that surprised no one, the DADT survey that polled soldiers on the effects of serving with closeted and open gays, revealed that 70% of the troops have worked with gay soldiers in the past, and 92% said it would not impact the way they do their job or interact with their fellow soldiers. Essentially, soldiers in a gunfight just don't care whether the soldier covering their back is attracted to men or women or both.

Despite the survey, Republicans in the Senate are sure to put up a fight. John McCain, for one, has voiced concern about the survey results, and made it clear that he does not support a repeal of of DADT. Nevertheless, Democrats are "very confident" they will get the 60 votes necessary. Hopefully, lame duck senators who have nothing to do will quit playing the politics game and throw their vote behind the bill. In addition, Obama should make a direct appeal to the Senate to put aside petty politics and listen to reason this holiday season. The people who defend our country should not be punished for exercising their right to freedom and loving whomever they choose.

So I know what my Christmas wish will be, that America lives up to its historic identity as a progressive country that celebrates freedom, and that we repeal DADT once and for all. To see where we stand on LGBT rights compared to other countries, check out this site or for more information on the repeal, follow the links below.


*Update*
The U.S. Senate passed the DADT repeal 65-31 on Saturday, ending the 17 year ban with the help of moderate republicans including Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski and Scott Brown. A great way to kick off Christmas break!

1 comment:

ShamRockNRoll said...

I love all the content you guys are getting up. There's been some really great posts. But I can't stress this enough--you MUST consistently market your posts, and the blog itself.

Every new post should be blasted on Twitter & Facebook by the Lefty's accounts, and author's should post a link to their work as well. Do this on a regular basis, and you will significantly increase the site traffic and create some great discussions.

Get together with Chris, Tim, Daisy (who I think is supposed to be the "social media coordinator" this semester?) and make sure you all have access to the accounts, and come up with a plan for marketing.

As a former editor, I find myself forgetting that Lefty's exists anymore because I never see its presence on any other social media. Then when I click on the bookmark I have for it I see all this great content that not enough people are reading.

Just some advice from someone who's been there. Feel free to contact Henry or myself with any questions about that kind of stuff.