Nov 8 2012

 

 

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Relax and take a week off as we savior our enormous and historical victories from last Tuesday. After all, we must continue to celebrate them to make them real to us. The election was filled with 'gifts' to us and we would be foolish to not embrace those victories before proceeding forward.

Then the LGBT community has more work to be done in our epic struggle for full equality. Let's review quickly some or our priority agenda.

ENDA:

Because the House of Representatives is still controlled by right-wingers we will have some difficulty passing positive LGBT legislation. However there might be some willingness now among traditional conservative Republicans to stand up to the Tea Party types and pass ENDA.

DOMA:

Our best shot in the Supreme Court is with the repeal of DOMA. If the Court strikes down the law then it frees the President's hands to make an enormous number of executive orders on behalf of LGBT married couples. In additions, more and more states are likely to recognize married couples from other states while not passing marriage itself.

MARRIAGE EQUALITY:

The forces for marriage equality are so much stronger than a week ago. No longer is it the legislatures or courts going against the people's will. The people spoke loud and clear on Tuesday in all four ballot measures.

From the legislative perspective we have real opportunities because of the political landscape and including some shifts in the make-up of legislatures, to pass marriage equality. States such as Delaware, Rhode Island, Illinois, New Jersey, Minnesota and Oregon should be at the top of our lists for embracing marriage equality!

Colorado marriage equality proponents have been going after civil unions. Now that both branches of their legislature is controlled by Democrats maybe they should go for full marriage equality.

The Supreme Court might decide just not to hear the Proposition 8 court case and marriage equality would become legal over night in California.

If those states do fall in place, within two years we could have marriage equality in sixteen states plus the District of Columbia.

COURT CASES:

There are two major court cases that could impact our lives. The first being the Supreme Court hearing the DOMA Cases and the second is the famous Proposition 8 Court Case.

Clearly if the Court does agree to hear the Proposition 8 case and rules in our favor then we could see marriage equality in all fifty states!

In addition, the community would be wise to start a powerful court case in those states that ban adoption by LGBT couples.

TRANSGENDER RIGHTS:

The passage of bills to protect and assist the Transgender community is essential. This includes especially the issue of employment protection and healthcare issues. It is essential that our national organizations work with the FBI and Justice Department to use the 'hate crimes' laws to track down those who have preyed especially heavy on this part of our coalition. A lot of work remains to be done here at every level.

ELECTING OUR OWN:

Wow, did the Victory Fun ever have a great night with the election of Senator Elect Tammy Baldwin and four new members of the House of Representatives. All over the country they assisted members of our community running for office with an astounding success rate. Nothing is more important than getting a member of our own community into positions of power.

APPOINTMENTS:

One thing that President Obama can easily do is to be the first President to appoint an openly LGBT person to his Cabinet. In addition, we are overdue for a seat on the Supreme Court. Don't forget, as the President is considering his appointments, LGBT Americans have talented and capable people at all levels of expertise.