poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

That's What Friends Are For - Where are Democrats on the Federal Marriage Amendment?
Following is an op/ed piece by Matt Foreman, Executive Director, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
NGLTF Communications Department

You've got to hand it to the Bush Administration: they take care of their own. Wealthy folks have received tax breaks; Star Wars defense contractors are reaping billions; pollution controls on business are being eased; national forests have been opened to logging.

Perhaps nothing is more glaring, however, than what has been done to cater to the demands of the religious right. For them, the constitutionally-mandated separation between church and state has been breached by the President's "Faith Based Initiative." Federal law now bans "late term abortion" at home and the administration has relentlessly attacked family planning programs abroad. With barely a shred of empirical evidence to show they work, "abstinence only" programs - that actually ban access to real sex education or HIV prevention information - are being lavishly funded. Even with all of these giveaways, the religious right demanded more and they got it: the President's active support of an amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibiting the recognition of same-sex marriage and enshrining the second class citizenship of gay and lesbian couples in our nation's most sacred document.

We can moan and groan, but the President is delivering money and issue red meat to a part of the electorate that was responsible for 40% of his votes in 2000. In return, they are energized, grateful, and will turn out en masse in November - an essential ingredient if Mr. Bush is to be re-elected. Old fashioned, smart politics.


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