Andrew Sullivan was so spot on when he explained Obama's policy making efforts
: Obama plans for the future, long-lasting, less retractable, more entrenched changes. While we all might not see what Obama sees right now, in about 5-10 years and well after his (hopefully) second term - I believe that gay rights will be more firmly in place and in motion than where they would have been under any other president.
One thing about Obama, that I've witnessed when he makes a promise, he intends to keep it. He can't fulfill every promise every day. Some promises CLEARLY will take more years than a first term to fulfill. Moreover, in order to achieve some promises (due to politics, the current political climate, and a "broken" Washington), a year or two of ground work - even grassroots efforts - have to be achieved before more obvious strides toward completion can be realized. All Obama has asked the American people is, "Come with me on this journey of rebuilding our nation. Together we can do it!"
We in the LGBT community need to realize that the struggle for civil rights
in this country began when the first slaves hit American soil (not colonial soil). The struggle for women's suffrage in the US was about the same, but really began in the late 1800s. Even today, African Americans and women are still facing lack of equality in the work place and in other places. It's shameful and disgusting how much racist verbiage is used and allowed by the conservative establishment that is not highlighted. You can hear the verbiage in every
Republican debate and interviews with the candidates.
So far, with Obama's help, DADT was repealed. DOMA is losing its battle in the courts. There are actually so many other wins along the way during Obama's first 3 years, that it would be too long to list for an easy read. The HRC has posted a list of new policy changes under Obama
that are directly geared toward the LGBT community and many people don't realize it. These new policy changes go well beyond some expectations, and like I mentioned before, have gone unnoticed; these changes fall into the category of "a year or two of ground work".
Obama is, thankfully, building the foundation of change for the LGBT community that will be harder to tear down overall in one fell swoop. Obama's ideas of change are not immediate or readily evident. But, I believe that when those changes are in place, they will represent changes for moving forward, not returning to archaic times.
The only issue that could possibly pose a greater threat - after his presidency - to our community is the National Defense Authorization Act. Yes, "the president [signed the act into law] with reservations about key provisions in the law — including a controversial component that would allow the military to indefinitely detain terror suspects, including American citizens arrested in the United States, without charge." holy13nation
asked whether any of us had reservations about that act and I certainly did when he asked the question. I was signing petitions against the legislation, but there wasn't a large wave of general American opposition. I think most people didn't understand how the act could affect them or our country. That one law - under any future president - could turn this country overnight into a form of the Spanish Inquisition, but without charge, questioning, or sentence.
The potential for this law hit me when Rick Santorum (one of the 5 ludicrous candidates currently running for president) said that gays were on a jihad against him because of his stance on same-sex marriage.
In that statement alone, it became poignantly clear that if (GOD FORBID) Rick Santorum ever became president (and note, I didn't say "elected"), there is now no stopping him from declaring outright that the entire LGBT community is an organized terrorist group. He, Rick Santorum, under the National Defense Authorization Act, could arrest and detain everyone in the US who is known or suspected to be gay (right or wrong). We could all be rounded up and put into US-based holding camps indefinitely. If you think this is hyperbole, read more about Santorum's support of any anti-gay legislation and extreme comments he's made across the board.
As much as Germany should have been more worried and concerned about Hitler and Italy about Mussolini, the US should be worried and concerned about the extreme right where Rick Santorum plays.
There are no concerns about Obama's perspectives or the future he is planning and exacting for a stronger America. I wish that he had not signed the National Defense Authorization Act, but that is not specifically targeted solely at our community. Obama has done right by our community and will continue to do so, as long as he's in office.
If you're an LGBT American, vote for Barack Obama to be a 2-term president in the face of the contrary history.
If you're an African American, vote for Barack Obama to be a 2-term president in the face of the contrary history.
If you're a female American, vote for Barack Obama to be a 2-term president in the face of the contrary history.
Let's make history happen AGAIN!