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Homosexual Activists Go GaGa for Obama
On Saturday night, billing himself as the opening act for singer Lady GaGa, President Obama mustered all of his rhetorical skills to deliver a rousing speech to the annual dinner of the Human Rights Campaign, America ’s largest pro-homosexual organization. It was an effort to pander to (and to some extent placate) one of the most radical parts of his liberal base — people who, despite Obama’s endorsement of 99% of their far-left agenda, are impatient with the pace of social and political change.
The speech was interrupted often by applause, but punctuated mostly by ironies — beginning with his praise for "progress sought by those with little influence or power" while speaking at a $250-a-plate black-tie dinner attended by federal office-holders and the Hollywood glitterati. He complained that "some may wish to define you solely by your sexual orientation or gender identity" — yet it is "GLBT" activists themselves who do that. We consider them human beings, who like all human beings must be held accountable for the consequences of their chosen behaviors.
He celebrated an impending victory for the homosexual political agenda, the expected passage of a federal "hate crimes" measure this week, by paying tribute to the parents of Matthew Shepard, a homosexual college student who was brutally murdered in Wyoming. Yet the best evidence suggests this was not an "anti-gay" hate crime at all — and in any case, the murderers were vigorously punished even in the absence of a "hate crimes" law.
Media reports on the speech focused on the President’s pledge, "I will end Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell." Obama declared, "We cannot afford to cut from our ranks people with the critical skills we need" — while failing to recognize that allowing homosexuality in the ranks is what would devastate recruiting and reenlistment rates. The roughly two percent of the population that is homosexual will never replace the ten percent of current military personnel who have said they would not re-enlist if homosexuals are allowed in the military.
President Obama continued his two-step on the issue of marriage, stopping short of endorsing same-sex civil "marriage," but calling homosexual partners "spouses" and declaring that "I support ensuring that committed gay couples have the same rights and responsibilities afforded to any married couple." He said we should "recognize relationships between two men and two women as just as real and admirable" as heterosexual ones. Yet there are a lot of relationships — between parents and children, between siblings, between close friends and neighbors, between members of a high school football team — that are "real and admirable," but that are never referred to as "marriage."
Perhaps in a veiled allusion to his controversial "safe schools" czar Kevin Jennings, Obama said, "[I]f any of my nominees are attacked not for what they believe but for who they are, I will not waver in my support." Yet Jennings is being attacked precisely for what he believes and what he has said and done, not for "who he is." (Perhaps the statement actually paves the way for Jennings ‘ departure.)
One thing was clear from Obama’s speech — his goal (like that of homosexual activists) is not simply equal legal rights. It is, rather, to overturn millennia of moral teaching that has acknowledged the harms of homosexual conduct and the unique benefits of marriage between a man and a woman. He dismissed those values as "outworn arguments and old attitudes," while decrying the grassroots campaigns to defend marriage as "divisive and deceptive efforts to feed people’s lingering fears for political and ideological gain."
In other words, if you hold to traditional values, the ultimate goal is simple — to silence you. President Obama told HRC, "[D]o not doubt the direction we are heading and the destination we will reach." That’s a warning the American people should heed.
Change They Believe in — But Won’t Pay for
Kimberly Strassel may have figured out why Senator Max Baucus’s (D-Mont.) health care plan is so popular with his liberal colleagues. In a shocking column called "State of Personal Privilege ," the Wall Street Journal columnist uncovered the real story behind Baucus’s proposal. According to Strassel, the bottom line is that these Senators are "all for imposing ‘reform’ on the nation, so long as it doesn’t disadvantage their constituents."
Under the Finance Committee’s "compromise," the state’s Medicaid programs would be the main vehicle for covering the majority of uninsured Americans. But the biggest problem with this idea is the states, many of which are struggling to make their own budgets, would bear the brunt of the expansion with an extra $37 billion in costs. But here’s the kicker: not every state would share in the burden. At least 17 would get a special break on the tax threshold and four would be exempt from footing the bill all together! Can you guess what these areas have in common? Most have Senators on the Finance Committee or in leadership roles. Nevada, Oregon, and Michigan have somehow managed to cut a deal so that the federal government covers their portion of the new Medicaid expenses over the next five years. Not surprisingly, they’re represented by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Finance Committee Members Debbie Stabenow (Mich.) and Ron Wyden (Ore.). "I wonder how citizens in Wyoming, California, and Florida and other states will feel if they pay more in taxes so that [Harry Reid’s state] can pay less…" said Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander (R), whose state wouldn’t enjoy these perks.
Of course, this isn’t the first time liberals have passed the buck on their own reform. The Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee made a point of excluding members of Congress from ObamaCare in its bill. This is especially interesting since President Obama made a point of telling voters, "If you don’t have health insurance, you’ll be able to get the same kind of health insurance that members of Congress give themselves." That is, until Congress decided that government-run health care isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
Family Research Council: 801 G Street N.W. Washington, D.C. 20001
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