take a wild guess (vitamincece) wrote in mass_lesbos,
take a wild guess

Obama on LGBT rights!

From the Civil Rights Agenda page of the whitehouse.gov website
(http://www.whitehouse.gov/agenda/civil_rights/), which was changed at noon
on inauguration day, and includes this...

Support for the LGBT Community
"While we have come a long way since the Stonewall riots in 1969, we
still have a lot of work to do. Too often, the issue of LGBT rights is
exploited by those seeking to divide us. But at its core, this issue is
about who we are as Americans. It's about whether this nation is going to
live up to its founding promise of equality by treating all its citizens
with dignity and respect."

-- Barack Obama, June 1, 2007

* Expand Hate Crimes Statutes: In 2004, crimes against LGBT Americans
constituted the third-highest category of hate crime reported and made up
more than 15 percent of such crimes. President Obama cosponsored legislation
that would expand federal jurisdiction to include violent hate crimes
perpetrated because of race, color, religion, national origin, sexual
orientation, gender identity, or physical disability. As a state senator,
President Obama passed tough legislation that made hate crimes and
conspiracy to commit them against the law.
* Fight Workplace Discrimination: President Obama supports the
Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and believes that our anti-discrimination
employment laws should be expanded to include sexual orientation and gender
identity. While an increasing number of employers have extended benefits to
their employees' domestic partners, discrimination based on sexual
orientation in the workplace occurs with no federal legal remedy. The
President also sponsored legislation in the Illinois State Senate that would
ban employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
* Support Full Civil Unions and Federal Rights for LGBT Couples:
President Obama supports full civil unions that give same-sex couples legal
rights and privileges equal to those of married couples. Obama also believes
we need to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and enact legislation that
would ensure that the 1,100+ federal legal rights and benefits currently
provided on the basis of marital status are extended to same-sex couples in
civil unions and other legally-recognized unions. These rights and benefits
include the right to assist a loved one in times of emergency, the right to
equal health insurance and other employment benefits, and property rights.
* Oppose a Constitutional Ban on Same-Sex Marriage: President Obama
voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment in 2006 which would have
defined marriage as between a man and a woman and prevented judicial
extension of marriage-like rights to same-sex or other unmarried couples.
* Repeal Don't Ask-Don't Tell: President Obama agrees with former
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff John Shalikashvili and other military
experts that we need to repeal the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. The key
test for military service should be patriotism, a sense of duty, and a
willingness to serve. Discrimination should be prohibited. The U.S.
government has spent millions of dollars replacing troops kicked out of the
military because of their sexual orientation. Additionally, more than 300
language experts have been fired under this policy, including more than 50
who are fluent in Arabic. The President will work with military leaders to
repeal the current policy and ensure it helps accomplish our national
defense goals.
* Expand Adoption Rights: President Obama believes that we must ensure
adoption rights for all couples and individuals, regardless of their sexual
orientation. He thinks that a child will benefit from a healthy and loving
home, whether the parents are gay or not.
* Promote AIDS Prevention: In the first year of his presidency,
President Obama will develop and begin to implement a comprehensive national
HIV/AIDS strategy that includes all federal agencies. The strategy will be
designed to reduce HIV infections, increase access to care and reduce
HIV-related health disparities. The President will support common sense
approaches including age-appropriate sex education that includes information
about contraception, combating infection within our prison population
through education and contraception, and distributing contraceptives through
our public health system. The President also supports lifting the federal
ban on needle exchange, which could dramatically reduce rates of infection
among drug users. President Obama has also been willing to confront the
stigma -- too often tied to homophobia -- that continues to surround
* Empower Women to Prevent HIV/AIDS: In the United States, the
percentage of women diagnosed with AIDS has quadrupled over the last 20
years. Today, women account for more than one quarter of all new HIV/AIDS
diagnoses. President Obama introduced the Microbicide Development Act, which
will accelerate the development of products that empower women in the battle
against AIDS. Microbicides are a class of products currently under
development that women apply topically to prevent transmission of HIV and
other infections.
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