Score one for gay rights

Even though health care reform is floundering and we are honestly no closer to pulling the troops out of the Middle East, every so often Barack Obama reminds us why it is better to have a Democrat in the White House (not to mention both houses of Congress) as when he signs legislation like he did on Wednesday (10/28).  He signed into law protections for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.  If anyone is attacked because they are LGBT (or perceived to be) then it  will now be considered a hate crime under federal law.

Of course, since I am being fair and balanced, I would say that I have problems with this scenario.

This was an amendment to the Defense Authorization Act.  I have spoken out against the amount of money that goes to “defense” so I won’t get into again.  (Not right now anyway.)  But even more problematic is that this legislation will only provide for more time in prison for violent offenders.  Believe me, this is a good thing, but it doesn’t go far enough.  We really need legislation that would bar workplace discrimination, allow military service or recognize same-sex marriages.

Perhaps in time, we will have these things at the federal level.  Some of these rights are recognized by a few states, but it should be at the federal level.  No one should have to worry about being discriminated against no matter who they love.  It’s amazing that this should even be a consideration.

I am glad to see that Congress is still working on other things while the health care legislation gets a lot of attention but very little action.  We need to tell them that they can do more though.  Even with majorities in both houses, they still need to be pushed.  Especially if your representative is a moderate or worse, a Blue Dog.

Here is a link to find out who your reps are.

Don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone that you don’t know who they are already.


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