April 4, 2012

Politico Naively Suggests GOP Retreat On Marriage - But We Know Better


House Republicans Think Americans Are Stupid, Women Are Their Property, And LGBT Students Not Worthy Of Protections

There it was in black and white, with two reporters on the byline, because the story was so big, with many sources to check, and legislators and insiders to speak with, lots of fact checking, because they announced the big news that “Republicans Retreat On Gay Marriage.” It says it right there, on politico.com.


Competent reporters Jake Sherman and Anna Palmer wrote:

It’s been one of the swiftest shifts in ideology and strategy for Republicans, as they’ve come nearly full circle on same-sex politics. What was once a front-and-center issue for rank-and-file Republicans — the subject of many hotly worded House and Senate floor speeches — is virtually a dead issue, as Republicans in Congress don’t care to have gay marriage litigated in the Capitol.

Even more than that, Republican leadership has evolved, too. It has quietly worked behind the scenes to kill amendments that reaffirm opposition to same-sex unions, several sources told POLITICO.

I wonder what quietly working behind the scenes actually means, when the House leadership is running up huge legal bills they will leave for the American taxpayer to pay, in order to fight DOMA in federal court?

I saw the politico piece right after it was posted online, and I read it, didn’t feel the story had much credibility, and filed it away in the recesses of my mind. I think many LGBT bloggers were skeptical like me, though I’ve seen the story posted a few more times than I find comfortable, as if it’s gospel, and we’re winning another battle against those pesky Republicans.

A quick glance at the record of the 112th Congress, would find that House Republicans have declared war on women, which is the social/gender issue that the Grand Old Party Poopers of aging white heterosexual men, have decided to focus their attention right now.

As the dog days of summer begins to creep up on lawmakers, and members start to focus more on their upcoming re-election battles, we will find that they have retreated from all of their hot button issues, so that they can return home and sell themselves as the party who is going to save our country from certain disaster.

I’m not criticizing the reporting in the politico.com gay marriage story. I’ve no doubt that the principals in the story said what they did, shrugged their shoulders, and did everything they could do to hide their contempt for the LGBT community from the earnest reporters. Just because they opt not to speak about a subject, doesn’t mean that their agenda has changed at all.

Just about 8 weeks ago, on 1/25/12 Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) introduced H.R. 3828, the Military Religious Freedom Protection Act, in order to prohibit a military installation or other property owned, rented, or otherwise under the jurisdiction or control of the Department of Defense (DOD) from being used to officiate, solemnize, or perform a marriage or marriage-like ceremony involving anything other than the union of one man with one woman.

Does that sound like a retreat on gay marriage? I didn’t think so.

Both Houses of Congress saw a reintroduction of the Abstinence Education Reallocation Act (2012) whose sole purpose is the “teaching of the skills and benefits of sexual abstinence as the optimal sexual health behavior for youth.” We know how effective that is, and while it’s not an indictment of gay marriage, it reflects narrow minded and ineffective church doctrine, that should have no place in government policy decisions. That same extremist mentality is responsible for inserting language into appropriations bills, to reinstate don’t ask don’t tell, or limit government expenditures on issues related to women’s health.

There are 4 important bills languishing in sub-committees, that the GOP has bottled up, like the Increasing Access to Voluntary Screening for HIV/AIDS and STIs Act (H.R. 1774), the Anti-Bullying and Harassment Act (H.R. 975), the Student Non-Discrimination Act  (H.R. 998), and the Tyler Clementi Higher Education Anti-Harassment Act (H.R. 1048). One piece of legislation is a public health issue, and the other three are about providing safe schools and a safe learning environment for our nation’s children.

Sure those issues have nothing to do with gay marriage, but they’re important to the students and teachers in our schools and communities. The laws could save a life, but Republicans aren’t interested in saving LGBT lives.  

Jonah reads aloud “Republicans Retreat On Gay Marriage.” Then he turns to his wife and asks, "what do you think of that Marjorie?

Marjorie sneers "The Repubs continue their attacks on my body, and all women, AND they refuse to protect our children. They're pathetic. But I know that we will stay on top of things, and we'll win because our fight goes on."

Jonah says that Mitt Romney would probably sign those bottled up bills, but he’ll never get the chance.

He asks me to remind you that we will stay vigilant, because our fight goes on.



 straight talk in a queer world.





 



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