In his address to the Human Rights Campaign last evening, he promised again, he received ovations again and Americans are waiting again. Judge for yourself in watching his 25-minute speech on MSNBC here. Try hitting:
- 5:27 — I"m here with a simple mesage. I'm here with you in that fight (for LGBT equality).
- 6:20 — Many of you don't believe progress has come fast enough.
- 8:28 — My commitment to you is unwavering even as we wrestle with these enormous problems (economy, war and more).
- 9:15 — A relationship between two men or two women are just as real and admirable as between a man and a woman.
- 13:25 — I will not waver in my commitment to ending discrimination in all its forms.
- 14:40 — We are moving ahead on don't-ask-don't-tell. We shouldn't be punishing patriotic Americans who have stepped forward to serve their country. We should be celebrating their willingness to show such courage and selflessness on behalf of their fellow citizens, especially when we're fighting two wars. We cannot afford to cut from our ranks people with the critical skills we need to fight, anymore than we can afford for our military's integrity to force those willing to do so into careers encumbered and compromised into having to live a lie. I'm working with the Pentagon, its leadership and the members of the House and Senate on ending this policy. Legislation has been introduced in the House to make this happen. I will end don't-ask-don't-tell. That's my commitment to you.
The latter is more intractable. It requires considerable legislative and administrative work to reverse. In contrast DADT would be ineffective immediately, if Obama had the will. The legislation to which he refers would simply overturn a policy as interpreted in a defense appropriations act. Meanwhile, an executive order from the President would stop enforcement and effectively kill DADT.
I rather doubt Obama is not aware he is commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces. He can pull rank on DADT to get this in the works right now.
The Palm Center's plan to end DADT lays out the specifics of status and the way out. None of it is as difficult as Obama has made it. Instead, he is off dickering with generals. In military minds, he is showing weakness to subordinates, never wise.
Likewise on same-sex marriage, Obama is two-faced about that. He says firmly and repeatedly he's for equal treatment, yet he won't take that small step to supporting SSM. He will go as far as asking too nicely for the repeal of DOMA and for a domestic-partnership law at the national level. Those are well on the way to where someone who claims he supports full rights for gays should be headed. He needs more pushes to align rhetoric and reality.
Put me down on the not progressing fast enough side. He claims the bully pulpit, but he has to step up and speak up.
Tags: massmarrier, Human Rights Campaign, Respect for Marriage, Obama, DOMA, same-sex marriage, DADT