Our future depends on it
Some endorsements are difficult to decide, especially when on the federal level. Even our best allies are less than perfect. In the midst of governing, the messy, labored, march toward progress can be frustrating, disappointing and enraging. When the candidate’s full term is reviewed, the progress (or lack of) is clear. In this case, our choice for president was a simple decision.
Bay Windows enthusiastically endorses Barack Obama for a second term as President of the United States of America.
Not since Abraham Lincoln has a president so deftly moderated opposing views and made so much progress. Understanding the power of the bully pulpit, President Obama’s personal support of same-sex marriage (“I think same-sex couples should be able to get married”) gave leaders across the nation permission to vocalize their support. (Thank you, Vice President Joe Biden, who got ahead of administration by saying what he thought—a remarkable quality—and beating the president to the same-sex alter.) Obama repealed Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, allowing lesbian and gay service members to serve openly. With recent court victories against the Defense of Marriage Act, the barrier preventing our marriages from being recognized by the Federal Government seems sure to fall.
This is the part of the editorial where the “stark difference” between the candidates is explained. The progress the Obama Administration has made on LGBT Civil Rights would leave any Republican nominee (and many other Democrats) in the dust, and this is especially true with Mitt Romney. Massachusetts has an intimate relationship with Romney, and Bay Windows has detailed his deceptions at length (visit “The Romney Files” at www.baywindows.com or download the 7/19/2012 pdf).
Simply put, four years of a Romney presidency would be devastating for the LGBT community.
While Massachusetts is certainly not a swing-state, and most predict Obama will win the Bay State handily, a victory is made of numbers—electoral college votes and money. This endorsement is not meant to simply affirm your choice, but also to inspire you to donate and volunteer. The problem of big-money in campaigns will not be solved in this election; and the chance of rolling back our rights is too great for you to sit on the sidelines. Visit www.barackobama.com to get involved.
Still not convinced? Here is a list of LGBT accomplishments, provided by the Obama Campaign.
Ordered the federal government to extend key benefits to same–sex partners of federal employees.
Hosted the first-ever White House LGBT Pride reception.
Awarded the highest civilian honor, the Medal of Freedom, to Billie Jean King and Harvey Milk.
Created a National Resource Center for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Elders.
Signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act into law.
Banned discrimination in federal workplaces based on gender identity.
Lifted the ban that prohibited people with HIV/AIDS from entering the United States.
Enacted the Affordable Care Act, reforming health care in America by lowering costs, expanding choice, and improving health care quality.
Ensured hospital visitation and medical decision-making rights for gay and lesbian patients.
Allowed transgender Americans to receive true gender passports without surgery.
Clarified the Family and Medical Leave Act to ensure family leave for LGBT employees.
Released America’s first comprehensive plan to prevent and end homelessness, which includes homeless LGBT youth.
Awarded a grant to the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Community Services Center to work with LGBT foster youth.
Recorded “It Gets Better” video to support LGBT youth experiencing bullying.
Led a United Nations measure to restore “sexual orientation” to the definition of human rights
Signed the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”.
Declared the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional and announced the administration will no longer defend it in court.
Hosted first-ever White House Conference on Bullying Prevention in America’s schools.
Completed an Institute of Medicine study on LGBT health, the first of its kind.
Issued guidance to foster safer working environments for transgender federal employees.
Endorsed the Respect for Marriage Act, a legislative effort to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act.
Clarified the meaning of “family” to include LGBT relationships, helping to protect bi-national families threatened by deportation.
Supported lesbian widow Edith Windsor in her suit against DOMA.
Ended the Social Security Administration’s gender “no–match” letters.
Implemented the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”.
Permitted military chaplains to officiate same-sex marriages where legal.
Addressed the annual Human Rights Campaign dinner for the second time.
Alison Nathan becomes second openly gay appointee to be confirmed to the federal bench under President Obama’s nomination.
Awarded Citizens’ Medal to Janice Langbehn, lesbian mother whose story paved the way for hospital visitation rights for same-sex couples.
Included specific data on health needs of lesbian and bisexual women in the Health Resources and Services Administration’s “Women’s Health USA 2011” federal report.
In his presidential proclamation of National Adoption Month, President Obama called for equal treatment for same-sex adoptive parents.
On World AIDS Day, recommitted the U.S. to creating an AIDS-free generation.
Created first-ever U.S. government strategy dedicated to combating human rights abuses against LGBT persons abroad.
Announced HUD’s new rule protecting against housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Announced White House LGBT Conference Series to address issues affecting LGBT Americans, including health, housing, and safety.
Promoted equal access to quality health care by enabling searches for health plans with same-sex partner benefits on Healthcare.gov.
Proposed a 2013 federal budget for an economy built to last, including providing security for the LGBT community.
Ensured transgender veterans receive respectful care according to their true gender through the Veterans Health Administration.
Michael Fitzgerald, fourth openly gay nominee under President Obama, is confirmed to the federal bench in California.
Came out against North Carolina’s Amendment 1, which prohibits same-sex marriage in the state.
President Obama and Vice President Biden announced their support for same-sex marriage.
The Pentagon celebrated LGBT Pride month for the first time.
Launched the “Let’s Stop HIV Together” campaign to fight HIV stigma.
Announced nearly $80 million in additional grants to fund HIV/AIDS care and ended AIDS Drug Assistance Program wait lists.
Honored six LGBT Champions of Change.
The President welcomed attendees to the 19th International AIDS Conference.