Unity of Diversity

After President Obama’s endorsement of same sex marriage earlier this month, gay rights became a main focus of the 2012 election. News stations on both the far right and the left were broadcasting constantly talking about the latest poles saying that more than half the country now supports same sex marriage and more than two thirds support civil unions. MSNBC shows more and more elected and appointed officials coming out to support LGBT rights, while Fox shows their Tea Party making announcements on the superiority of having more white straight babies (Sadly this is only a slight exaggeration)

Needless to say, public opinion is shifting. For many, many years, at least back to the 1960’s, but likely many years before, the Right has used a divide and conquer strategy to keep LGBT people from becoming publicly accepted. It’s the same tactic they use against African American groups, Latino groups, Women’s Rights groups, Labor groups, and groups dealing with the rights of impoverished people and those who cannot help them selves. The Right tried to divide these groups, pitting them against each other whenever possible. And sadly, this was massively successful. One of the clearest examples has been between the African American community and the LGBT community. For instance, the reason Proposition 8, the ban on gay marriage in California, is said to have only passed because so many African Americans came out that year to vote for Barack Obama. And the President’s decision to publicly support same sex marriage immediately highlighted a schism in the African American community, with leaders in the community fiercely debating their Christian traditions of opposing same sex marriage with wanting to support the first African American president.

Just today I saw dozens of tweets going off from major LGBT organizations like the Human Rights Campaign and the Gay and Lesbian Task Force about a huge announcement. The NAACP, one of the most prominent and well known groups in the African American Community, have officially endorsed same sex marriage

http://www.hrc.org/blog/entry/naacp-board-endorses-marriage-equality

This represents a huge, huge step forward for LGBT rights. This highlights how quickly public opinion on LGBT issues is changing. This endorsement, along with the President’s, challenges the decades of division between the two minority communities. This is amazing, for when all the minority communities join together, we are, by far, the majority. When we can put the differences between us aside, and recognize the shared experience of discrimination and oppression that each minority group faces, we can stand united for equality for all people.

This is an amazing sign for the 2012 election. The right was banking on doing as they had in 2004, splitting the democrats between the moderates and the “extremists” who believed in equality for all people and a woman’s right to choose. In 2012, with still almost 6 months till the polls open, it has been made absolutely clear that tactic will not work.

 

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2 Comments

  1. Anonymous

     /  July 10, 2012

    Yeah, I’ve also noticed this pitting of oppressed groups against each other. In high school one of my black classmates said she would get mad if people talked about sexism because she thought it was not as common as racism. Which was bs, because every form of oppression needs to be addressed and dealt with. If the groups stand together, they far outnumber the oppressors.

    Reply
  2. anon

     /  July 10, 2012

    Yeah, I’ve also noticed this pitting of oppressed groups against each other. In high school one of my black classmates said she would get mad if people talked about sexism because she thought it was not as common as racism. Which was bs, because every form of oppression needs to be addressed and dealt with. If the groups stand together, they far outnumber the oppressors.

    Reply

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