Bent News,10/4/11: Booing a gay soldier — presidential politics, post-DADT
Post-DADT presidential politics, as illustrated by continuing reaction to the booing of an active-duty gay soldier at a Sep. 22 GOP candidates debate; and more in this edition of Bent News.
Presidential politics, post-DADT
- Cain says he should’ve defended booed gay soldier; McCain says all GOP candidates should’ve. (via @AMERICAblogGay) http://t.co/EirAGYud #
Nearly two weeks after audience members at a Republican presidential debate booed Stephen Hill, a gay soldier serving in Iraq who asked if GOP candidates planned to “circumvent” the repeal of DADT, Republican candidates and politicians are defending — or not defending — their lack of response to the disrespect shown an active-duty servicemember.
I don’t know when they booed and I don’t know why they booed. But I will tell you, that the boos and applause hasn’t always coincided with my own views, but I haven’t stepped in to try and say, ‘this one is right, this one is wrong.’ Instead, I focus on the things I think I will say.
ThinkProgress reports that “Rick Santorum, Jon Huntsman, and Herman Cain are the only candidates to publicly distance themselves from the jeering after last month’s debate.” Both Rick Santorum and Herman Cain have stated they would reinstate Don’t Ask Don’t Tell if elected president.
President Obama, by contrast, told the audience at the annual Human Rights Campaign fundraising dinner last Saturday,
We don’t believe in the kind of smallness that says it’s okay for a stage full of political leaders — one of whom could end up being the president of the United States — being silent when an American soldier is booed. We don’t believe in that…
“We don’t believe in standing silent when that happens. We don’t believe in them being silent since. You want to be commander in chief? You can start by standing up for the men and women who wear the uniform of the United States, even when it’s not politically convenient. We don’t believe in a small America. We believe in a big America — a tolerant America, a just America, an equal America — that values the service of every patriot.
Audience members gave the President a standing ovation. ThinkProgress has video — watch:
ThinkProgress also has analysis and text of President Obama’s full speech at the HRC dinner.
Notably at Saturday’s dinner, there was a table filled with servicemembers — both active-duty and retired — wearing their uniforms. HRC spokesman Michael Cole-Schwartz said it was a first for active-duty members to do so, since it’s also the first post-DADT dinner.
However, President Obama is “still working” on his views about same-sex marriage, and is still stopping short of advocating for full marriage equality, though he endorsed the end of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
- Week in Review of LGBT news from @gaycivilrights Wall Street, Saudi women suffrage, DADT cases, Obama at HRC http://t.co/48RLl1GG #
- Why do conservatives oppose military chaplains’ religious liberty? (via @TPEquality) http://t.co/R5QfrMSp #
- @afterellen tells us about five documentaries to watch during LGBT History Month http://t.co/OKvFUFeG #
- Country singer Toby Keith OK on same-sex marriage? Yep! Whaddaya know. Good for him. (via @TheAdvocateMag) http://t.co/QFwfC3lN #
- South Africa: So-called “corrective rape” of lesbians — & now a serial killer may be stalking gay men. The Advocate http://t.co/AK5sDIBM #