AARP Pride Information and Resources for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender People, Families and Allies - AARP
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
In a move to pacify critics from the LGBT community, Pres. Barack Obama released a statement yesterday proclaiming June 2009 as "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Month". I feel so warm and fuzzy right now that I've completely forgotten that he hasn't moved an inch to fulfill his campaign promises to us.
This momentous proclamation has shown me once and for all that he gets us. He really gets us! He understands that the Stonewall Riots were our Rosa Parks moment.
When the hustlers and drag queens at the Stonewall Inn fought back against police harassment and unfair anti-sodomy laws in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, they were standing up for their civil rights, just like Obama's father did when he was a Freedom Rider back in the day.
Our Marches on Washington to demand equality have empowered our community and strengthened our resolve just like Dr. Martin Luther King's famous "I Have a Dream" speech stirred Obama's grandparents when they joined thousands of African-Americans who marched in the same city in August, 1963.
Our community has built on the struggles of our forebears who fought long and hard to forge a better life for the next generation, just like generations of Obamas have.
And when the witch captured Dorothy and held her in her castle, ToTo ran for help and Tin Man, Lion and Scarecrow came to her rescue, just like...
Oh yeah, that never really happened either. The truth is, like the 43 that came before him, this president doesn't get us at all.
When Barack Obama announced his candidacy over two years ago, critics in the African-American community wondered aloud whether or not he was "black enough". They were quickly silenced by others in the community who said, essentially, "Shhh! Don't blow it for us. We've got a real shot this time!"
Maybe in all the excitement of Obama-mania and the opportunity to make history, we were a bit too hasty in our support of this guy.
The struggle for civil rights in this country has always been a long, drawn out, multi-generational effort. Whether you're Black, Latino, Asian, Jewish, Catholic, Female or LGBT, it's the struggle that shapes your cultural identity; an identity that is passed on from generation to generation and keeps the fight going through decades and centuries of oppression, baby steps of progress and backlash when the political pendulum swings back to the enemy's favor. As a first generation African-American, Barack Obama has no such cultural identity.
So thanks, Mr. President, for the lip service. Like an anonymous hook-up with a hot married guy, it's a nice place to start, but don't think for a minute we're gonna let you stop there. We're going all the way. No one likes a cock-tease.