December 26, 2009

"How Newsweek Got It Wrong on Gay Rights"

A few days ago we linked to a story in Newsweek that was very pessimistic about the prospect of action on gay rights matters in Congress in 2010. Here's a different view by Dr. Jillian T. Weiss posting on The Bilerico Project:

No one reading my columns here and knowing my view of LGBT rights in the Obama era will mistake me for a dewy-eyed optimist. At the same time, however, the prediction that "Obama does nada on gay rights" in 2010 is beyond bold and moves into the realm of just plain silly.

There won't be as much progress as progressives, including myself, would like, that's for sure. That's why we're called progressives. To say that there will be none, however, has a certain quality of sheer spite to it. There is movement on important LGBT rights issues that will continue into 2010 and could result in some important victories. Such victories are by no means assured, but despair is the enemy of victory.

Why would Newsweek, which has run many stories strongly sympathetic to LGBT rights, make such a wrong-headed and defeatist prediction? Anyone with any experience in legislative work knows that there are many ups-and-downs in a legislative campaign. Witness the health-care reform effort, in which the reform advocates have just pulled a health-care rabbit out of a Senatorial hat after weeks and months of moaning about the intransigence of the Senate. Admittedly, it's a sickly heath-care rabbit, and in dire need of a Medicare card, which it's not going to get, but a rabbit is a rabbit.

Have the journalists at Newsweek, hard-headed veterans of the ups-and-downs of many legislative campaigns, been assimilated by the Borg? In a word, yes. If you believe Newsweek, resistance is futile. Let me just say one thing: do not drink the kool-aid.

Click here to read the rest of the essay:

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