Saturday, December 18, 2010

The battle for DADT ends. The battle for ENDA and DOMA continues

Pop a bottle of champagne and enjoy this victory we have worked very hard for this day and we should rejoice. This is one battle won in a continuing war for our full civil rights and human dignity. What next?

Barney Frank has said that then next two years nothing will happen in Congress on our front. Perhaps; however, that does not mean that nothing will happen nationally. There are, after all, fifty states connected to the DC beltway. In those states, we need to fight for the election of congressional representatives that will vote for the passage of ENDA (the Employment Non Discrimination Act). While we are on that subject, we need to ask officials of the Democratic Party why the 111th Congress FAILED to pass ENDA.

We need to hold them accountable and responsible, not out of some irrational desire for vengeance, but to remind them and future politicians that they will be held accountable for failing to keep their promises to our community. There must be a real world consequence for selling us out.

The repeal of DOMA (the so called Defense of Marriage Act) should be reinstated in the list of legislative goals of both the DNC and the White House. Both organizations have recently removed them from their list of objectives. We have noticed and we do not like this sin of omission. Politicians and political parties are vehicles towards justice, but often have ulterior motives. Recall that both DOMA and DADT bear President Clinton’s signature. We have been sold out before and if we look the other way, we will be sold out again.

On a local level, I suggest we focus resources on electing State Senators in New York State who support full marriage equality. Common wisdom is that the Ninth Circuit Court or the US Supreme Court will rule narrowly to uphold Judge Walker’s decision that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. This will restore Same-sex marriage in California. If New York State passes legislation that permits Same-sex marriage, we will have achieved a “critical mass” that will propel same-sex marriage forward in the United States.

Savor today’s victory, but realize that we are still engaged in a war for our full civil rights and human dignity. This is no time to “rest on our laurels.”


Leonardo Ricardo said...

Sometimes I just want to cry with joy--I think I will.

Thanks for all that you do,


Mareczku said...

Yes, thank you for sharing your thoughts with us and also for all that you do. Thanks for representing so many that feel that they don't have a voice, especially the many priests that are with you but are afraid to speak out.

SteveP said...

If I understand correctly, you are celebrating that soldiers must be obedient to their commander just as priests must be obedient to a bishop. Hope to see you out front leading by example, dictates of conscience not withstanding.

Father Geoff said...

Dear Steve P,

I re-read the blog post that you commented on and in all sincerity; I do not see how you can possibly deduce that I am “celebrating that soldiers must be obedient to their commander.” Your comment “conscience not withstanding,” suggest that you hold obedience as a moral absolute and it is not. “I was just following orders” was not a defense that worked at the Nuremberg Trials and it certainly will not work at the end of this life.

Happy New Year,

Fr. Geoff