Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2015-11-25
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



VIEWPOINTS: LGBT Capitol miracle
by Mark Segal

facebook twitter stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

It's magic time in Washington, D.C., and our LGBT media, bloggers and, particularly, lobbyists like the Human Rights Campaign are not feeling that magic. Most are tripping over themselves to give what they believe should be the LGBT priorities for the Obama administration's second term. All their suggestions are worthy, but they all miss the Washington magic. They're looking in the wrong place.

Let's take a cue from the Latino community. It's the other side of Pennsylvania Avenue we should be focusing on—the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. The Latino community gets the game: Their lobbyists have a focus and make it simple for legislators to understand. For them, it's the Dream Act. For us, it should be the Employment Nondiscrimination Act.

Magic time in D.C. happens rarely. It comes every four to eight years and only when there is a true shift in the populace that one of the political parties begins to look inward to try and find their deficiencies. That magic time usually runs from the election to the end of the current congressional term, since the congressional leadership can count on the majority of outgoing members for their votes in trade for future assistance, and on current members looking for plum positions in the new Congress.

ENDA is the only major part of our priority list that is not accomplished. It's important, since most LGBT Americans are still not protected in employment. Military servicemembers are; if you work for the U.S. government you are. To our lobbyists in D.C., isn't it time to use our political capital for the rest of the people?

How to make it happen: It takes three steps. First, ENDA must pass both the House and Senate, then be signed by the president, whose support we already have. We know we also have the support of Democratic leadership and the overwhelming majority of Democrats in the House and Senate. OK, here comes the problem, and a suggestion.

From that scenario, you should devise that the hold-up would be in the House of Representatives, whose speaker is Congressman John Boehner. The speaker controls all. If he wishes, legislation will make it to the floor and to a vote. He does not necessarily have to have his name on the legislation. The point is, he has the Republican votes and the authority to get it through the House. And as magic season has it, he's very much aware of not only the future of Republicans in the House, but those around him who want his job. That, my friends, spells opportunity. Choose your partner and dance. Anyone in for a foxtrot with Congressman Cantor?

It's time for our friends at GOProud and Log Cabin, and people like Ken Mehlman to prove themselves. They should either, on their own or with a coalition of organizations, focus like a laser beam on ENDA and Boehner. If you guys don't have the access, then it's time for you to stand your ground, as Latinos have with the Dream Act. Ken, raising money for marriage equality will not wash the blood off your hands, but standing in front of the Capitol at a news conference fighting for nondiscrimination starts you on that path.

Here's the rub: We have about four weeks left of this Congress. Think that is not enough time? Remember the end of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell?" That's all it took, just two years ago.

Mark Segal is publisher of the Philadelphia Gay News. He can be reached at .

facebook twitter stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


SENIOR MOMENTS Gollums, Muppets and orcs 2015-11-25
VIEWS Where's Log Cabin Republican activism? 2015-11-25
LGBTQ and long-term care: Caregiving 2015-11-18
Guest column: Larry Kramer's sour times 2015-11-18
GUEST COLUMN Evolutions 2015-11-11
GUEST COLUMN LGBTQ and long-term care: What you need to know about housing 2015-11-11
VIEWS What should white LGBTQ groups do now? 2015-11-11
THE AMAZON TRAIL Gen future 2015-11-10
GUEST COLUMN: Sleeping out for youth 2015-11-04
Open To Thinking: PEN protests the rise of anti-LGBTQ legislation 2015-11-04
GUEST COLUMN LGBTQ and long-term care: What you need to know 2015-11-04
VIEWS Running through cancer while helping others 2015-11-04
VIEWS Creating Change 2016: Calling for community housing 2015-10-28
MOMBIAN LGBTQ families: Past, present and future 2015-10-26
GUEST COLUMN: LGBT identity as big data 2015-10-23
GUEST COLUMN Coming out on campus 2015-10-21
VIEWS Democratic debate left out LGBTQ issues 2015-10-21
VIEWS Azealia Banks, please stop insulting the LGBT community 2015-10-20
History is for kids 2015-10-14
MOMBIAN A change of season 2015-10-14
VIEWS My disappointment with the pontiff's visit 2015-10-07
Open To Thinking: Religious liberty USA style 2015-10-07
SENIOR MOMENTS My mother and Kentucky clerk Kim Davis 2015-10-07
A letter about dying, to my lesbian communities 2015-09-30
THE AMAZON TRAIL Lesbian vacations 2015-09-30
VIEWS Dis-membering Stonewall 2015-09-23
Guest column: Ode to My Husband 2015-09-23
VIEWS How the Golden Girls fought for gay rights 2015-09-23
VIEWS The first draft of history 2015-09-23
SENIOR MOMENTS Heroic women and Caitlyn Jenner 2015-09-16
ASK LAMBDA LEGAL Back to school: Bathrooms 2015-09-16
VIEWPOINTS In support of Creating Change 2015-09-15
Transforming Gender: The other side 2015-09-09
VIEWS Katrina's struggling Black gay community 2015-09-09
VIEWS Labor Day, Walmart and me 2015-09-09
Open To Thinking: A personal tribute to Julian Bond 2015-09-02
MOMBIAN Back-to-school reflections and resources 2015-09-02
THE AMAZON TRAIL Dykey Dorothy and friends 2015-08-26
Marriage Equality and Social Justice 2015-08-19
Stop and frisk: An Open Letter to the ACLU 2015-08-19

Copyright © 2015 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.