( – promoted by buhdydharma )
President Obama is back from his Pan Pacific – Asian debt sales trip, and the Lame Duck session of Congress is now officially underway.
Lt. Dan Choi and 12 other Get Equal civil rights activists handcuff themselves to the White House fence on Monday, Nov 15, 2010, to protest the military’s discriminatory policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” (photo of murky screenshot from video was highlighted. )
Thirteen demonstrators organized by the GetEqual campaign handcuffed themselves to the White House’s north gate on Monday (and reportedly super-glued the handcuffs), demanding that Obama push Congress to advance a repeal of the law prohibiting openly gay service in the armed forces. Prior to leading a chant of “Barack Obama, silent homophobia,” the individuals offered sharp rebukes of political leaders across the spectrum. They were arrested shortly thereafter.
“We have served our country valiantly, the defense of freedom and justice, now it is time for our leaders to do the same,” said Lt. Dan Choi, a gay Army officer who was fired under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and has become the face of the campaign for repeal of the policy. “After visiting Senator Harry Reid today, the majority leader, his staff telling us that the president is not engaged, at all, in the repeal of the most discriminatory law that bars soldiers from telling the truth. After all his rhetoric I think we must conclude that there is truth to the knowledge in homophobia of both sorts. There is a loud homophobia, those with platforms. And there is a silent homophobia of those who purport to be our friends and do nothing. Loud homophobia and silent homophobia have the same result, they must be combated and this is what we intend to do today.”
“Senator Reid stands behind his commitment to repeal DADT but he can’t do it alone,” an aide said. “He is going to need republican senators, notably, Sen. McCain to heed the advice of our military leaders and reverse this discriminatory policy.”
Many of us missed the part where Senator John “All Mavericky” McCain of Arizona (wtf is it with Arizona, anyway?) was elected Co – Commander in Chief. His darling wife Cindy Lou the Anheiser Busch Beer heiress, first appeared in a new NOH8 advertisement on Nov 10 which criticised the present military policy on DADT, while John McCain was glorifying his last filibuster of it and calling for more delays in getting rid of it. Three days later she put a tweet up which said she stood with her husband’s stance on the issue. Then Senator McCain went on Meet the Press and said they agreed. Because nothing says the Republicans take an issue seriously like telling the whimmen in public to get back in line. Unless you’re Sarah Palin. Then you tell them to get in back of Exxon’s line.
Lady in green fatigues speaking on the left “We’re going to knock on the door and keep on knocking until we have our dignity, our honor, and our pride restored.” AA man in tan Army fatigues and beret on the right calling on the NAACP to support them. “Their silence is deafening.”
photo highlighted because of crappy murkiness of original
This is interesting, from Politico – look who’s acting concerned this time about the defense bill and the Lame Duck session – and sent a letter to DOD Sec Robert Gates, saying that they want the Pentagon’s Comprehensive Working Group report on DADT released as soon as possible instead of waiting for Dec 1, the “offical” release date :
On Monday, Senators Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins, a Maine Republican, sent a letter (viewable here http://www.politico.com/static… ) to Defense Secretary Robert Gates, urging him to make the highly-anticipated report public “as soon as possible” to improve the chances that a conditional repeal of the ban on gays in the military – currently attached to a must-pass defense authorization bill – will become law before the clock runs out on the lame-duck session next month.
“Some of our colleagues in the Senate share our view about the importance of passing a defense bill but they are awaiting release of the working group’s report before agreeing to begin debate on the bill,” they wrote. The report, they continue, “will help inform their understanding and alleviate some concerns they may have…. Given the limited amount of time remaining in the 111th Congress, the soonest possible release of the working group’s report could therefore be instrumental in allowing the defense bill to move forward.”
The response from the White House ?
The president, meanwhile, was holding private meetings with nothing public on his schedule. It was a relatively quiet day for Obama, after returning Sunday from a grueling 10-day trip overseas.
We did learn today that the President was going to eventually replace David Axelrod, who will be busy building a moat around Chicago, with David Plouffe. Plouffe ran the 2008 campaign, left to “write a book” after praising domestic spending freezes, and had the brainchild of targeting the voter outreach to the under 25 crowd during the 2010 midterm elections. Anybody looking at the campaign donations of Blue Dog Senators and Congressman knows they are totally dominated by younger folk. This ought to be entertaining.
The rest of the world: In the 21st century.
Our world: Stuck in the 19th.