Unappeased Forever

Last year, LGBTQ activists complained that President Trump did not issue a pride month proclamation, although many high-ranking officials and executive departments did so, This year the president issued a statement, and LGBTQ activists complained about it. But of course.

More. Obama was a more self-evidendently pro-LGBTQ rights president, as progressive activists view LGBTQ rigthts. But activists give Trump no credit for anything – from his convention acceptance speech pledging “to our protect LGBTQ citizens from the violence and oppression” (following the shooting deaths at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub) to openly gay appointments, to his administration’s raising the issue of the safety and security of gay people around the globe. Instead, efforts to find a workable balance between the rights of religious traditionalists not to face state coercion to provide creative services to same-sex weddings get denounced as “bigotry” and “hate” by progressives who have nothing but contempt for the rights of those whom they detest.

9 Comments for “Unappeased Forever”

  1. posted by Jorge on

    This is your friendly reminder that — despite all his faults — Donald Trump is the most pro-gay president in American history.

    Maybe as a person. One of Trump’s few redeeming qualities is that he espouses the civic values of a late 1980s New York liberal. I think I’ll read a New York Times ad now.

    Perhaps even as a Republican, though I think W. Bush did more to move the party and plenty of others on the far-right decided not to move the party back over the past 10-odd years. As a president, I think Trump has largely been riding Obama’s coattails.

    The delegates at the Republican National Convention cheered nominee Trump’s “LGBT” comments, he found that so remarkable, even he hasn’t taken credit.

    You know I make much of what I used to see as Barack Obama’s lukewarm enthusiasm for the gay community (and I still believe it). One of the things he has always recognized is that a president has to move beyond their own narrow perspectives and carry out the leadership the country needs, not always the leadership they feel like giving. He went very far out and I do not think it was either in his comfort zone or out of any nefarious motivation.

    Too bad for Mike Pence, Joe Biden and Dick Cheney are both world-spinning superstars as Vice Presidents.

  2. posted by kosh iii on

    “nothing but contempt for the rights of those whom they detest.”

    That’s the decades long practice of the GOP and Religious Right.

  3. posted by JohnInCA on

    Disclaimer: I’ve never claimed Troop was the worst president ever, on gay issues or any other issue, and agree that much of the over-the-top stuff is, well, over-the-top.

    That said, he’s done nothing for equality. The best he can do is point to Obama-era stuff that he hasn’t rescinded.

    But especially when it comes to trans folk, he has rescinded a lot. Guidance to schools regarding trans kids, trans folk in the military, passports and trans folk. Basically anytime conservatives say “hey, can we do something about these trans people?” Trump will throw them some inane policy “fixing” something that was working.

    And let’s not forget what else his state department has been doing… it’s not as bad as what the UK is getting up, but asylum pleas from gay folk are pretty horrific right now (“but are you gay gay, or just gay?” and similar nonsense), the recent mess with “oh, we’re denying your marriage as legitimate, so your kid isn’t a citizen”.

    And let’s not forget the so-called “religious liberty” front, and his admin giving the go-ahead to send federal funds to an adoption agency that wants to turn away Jews, Catholics and gays.

    So sure. We’re in no danger of internment camps. But he hasn’t moved the needled towards equality any, and he has moved it towards inequality (especially in regards to trans people).

    Maybe Grenell’s anti-sodomy-law effort will actually have results. So far, I haven’t seen or heard any reason to believe there’s any teeth to it. And given that this is the president of all-talk-no-action, I’m not inclined to be charitable and assume it’ll happen. After all, he hasn’t even delivered for his supporters.

    • posted by Jorge on

      Basically anytime conservatives say “hey, can we do something about these trans people?” Trump will throw them some inane policy “fixing” something that was working.

      You are calling out the “wag the dog” game accurately. I am afraid I cannot agree with the premise that conservatives are asking the president to fix things that are working.

      …asylum pleas from gay folk are pretty horrific right now (“but are you gay gay, or just gay?” and similar nonsense), the recent mess with “oh, we’re denying your marriage as legitimate, so your kid isn’t a citizen”.

      This is hardly specific to gays. Refugee and asylum applications are being treated with greater skepticism across the board. Under the Sessions Justice Department, child marriage survivors and green light-ed men and boys are no longer refugees, they are simply fleeing areas with higher crime and worse law enforcement. There’s also the three-time ISIS bride US citizen who’s being called a fraud and denied re-entry because some after the fact proofreading revealed her father didn’t lose his diplomatic immunity until after she was born, not before.

      Such policies arise out of the necessity of avoiding discriminating on the basis of national origin against the tens of thousands of Central American migrants who are coached to lie and claim asylum even when they’re really trying to get in for jobs. Because as we all know, Trump’s immigration platform is racist, and racial profiling is illegal, so the Cabinet heads must whitewash it to make it legal.

      As such what you are implicitly advocating is either a politics of special treatment for gays (trigger the rainbow coalition slippery slope: nonwhites, women, Satanists), or an anti-conservative politics of more lax standards. I cannot accept either.

      This website has done much to challenge the premise that a progressive mindset necessarily correlates with egalitarian principles: by placing the well-being of specific communities as a prime consideration discrimination can result. The reverse is true, too:
      Immigration policy is becoming more conservative, period. That it hurts gays more than others hardly makes it a gay issue. It simply reflects a realpolitik view of the world that is willing to look at the collateral damage one is about to inflict, and damn the consequences.

  4. posted by mike king & David Bauler on

    What has the Trump admin done – policywise – in the advancement of LGBT rights? A proclamation can be nice, but it can also be an effort to cover up bad policy.

    • posted by Jorge on

      Just a minute. Last time I checked, gays got marriage across the entire country. What more could you ask for in policy? Why is there even a need to “advance”? It’s that kind of thinking that dooms minority communities into a false sense of oppression and self-hatred.

      (And I would ask a similar question about transgender people: why should “advancement” be locked into only one possible problem or goal, while the rest go unanswered?)

      I think it’s just fine to keep things the way they are for a couple of years until the country can have the confidence that this is what we want to protect Let Donald Trump be the caretaker president. We’ve had more than enough “change” and “progress” to last a generation.

      • posted by JohnInCA on

        What more could you ask for in policy?

        Off the top of my head?

        Stop mandating discrimination in the armed forces (T-ban).
        Stop federally funding organizations that explicitly intend to discriminate.
        Non-discrimination laws need to be adjusted†.
        Republicans to stop advocating for Obergefel’s overturn.
        Red states to stop trying to find ways around Obergefel‡. Repudiation of folks like Coffee County District Attorney Craig Northcott.
        Not cutting off funding for research into HIV/AIDS treatments.
        Stopping the administrations constant and repeated roll-back of rights and protections for trans-folk.
        Stopping the administration’s dick-moves from state department.

        And this is just off the top of my head, and I’m not even an activist.

        †There are a number of solutions I find acceptable, but the status quo is not. Either we all have to play nice, or we all get to pull out the long knives. Anti-gay beliefs are not more sacred then other discriminatory beliefs.
        ‡See: Texas trying to strip spouses of gay state employees of their benefits.

  5. posted by Tom Scharbach on

    This is your friendly reminder that — despite all his faults — Donald Trump is the most pro-gay president in American history.

    As someone who has run a number of low-level campaigns (state Assembly and state Senate races), I’d suggest that there might be better was to package President Trump than by claiming that “Donald Trump is the most pro-gay president in American history”.

    That claim (right or wrong) inevitably leads to the conclusion that President Trump has been almost entirely ineffectual as a “pro-gay president” — unable to control Vice President Pence, unable to promulgate pro-equality policies or reverse efforts by his Cabinet and political appointees to roll back pro-equality policies and regulations adopted during the prior administration, and unable to influence his party to get off the anti-equality train at the state level.

    I suspect that the contrast between the President’s pro-gay attitudes and his utter inability to influence his administration and his party on LGBT issues will come to a head when in the 2020 Republican Platform is drafted. As you will recall, LCR accurately described the 2016 platform as “the most anti-LGBT Platform in the Party’s 162-year history”. If the 2020 platform is not markedly different in both tone and substance, the President’s inability to influence his party on LGBT issues will be spotlighted even more starkly.

  6. posted by Tom Scharbach on

    Frank Bruni has an interesting — and to my mind, largely accurate — take on President Trump’s record on LGBT issues: The Gay Truth About Trump: His betrayal of us is his betrayal of all of America.

    An excerpt:

    Far from protecting us, he and his administration have stranded us, packing federal courts with judges hostile to gay rights, barring transgender Americans from military service and giving a green light to Americans who, citing religious beliefs, don’t want to give us medical care or bake us a cake. When several United States embassies — including the one in Berlin, over which Grenell presides — requested permission to fly the rainbow flag this month in honor of Gay Pride, the State Department said no.

    It’s an ugly story, and it pretty much sums up Trump’s approach to governing. His treatment of gay people perfectly reveals the flabbiness of his convictions and his willingness to stand at odds with a majority of Americans if it pleases the smaller number who adore him. He’ll suffer our anger for their ardor. Decency and principle don’t enter into it.

    And he is at odds with most of the country, very much so. Take the Trump administration out of the equation and the march toward gay equality continues apace. As gay and transgender Americans prepare to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising on June 28, we inhabit a state of cognitive dissonance, staring at a split screen: insults from the White House on one half of it, positive reinforcement from elsewhere on the other.

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