Tonight, Logo and the Human Rights Campaign Foundation present The Visible Vote ’08, a live forum in which the leading 2008 Democratic presidential candidates will address a range of issues of importance to the LGBT community. And if you don’t think that’s a big deal, just trust those of us who grew up in the Reagan years: It’s a very big deal. As panelist Melissa Etheridge notes, “The fact that these candidates have even agreed to show up to a televised forum on LGBT issues means that we have come a long way.”
The event will be brodcast on Logo and VisibleVote08.com at 9:00 p.m. ET tonight. The full program will also be available on Joost on August 20, and on iTunes on August 21.
Meanwhile, over on the Visible Vote ’08 website, a host of LGBT folk have been blogging about various election issues. Here are some excerpts of their views and insights.
Julie Goldman (The Big Gay Sketch Show):
I will vote for the candidate who supports gay marriage, as that candidate believes in human rights. That candidate believes civil rights are the foundation of human equality. That is what we are really talking about here. True equality.
I don’t need you to tolerate me or accept me, but my money is just as green as yours, and my love is as valid as anyone else’s — and no one has a right to judge or legislate that. I am tired of begging for what is already mine to own, the right to live as I see fit for myself. READ JULIE’S FULL POST
Instead of planning our weddings, let’s plan a better world. We’ve fought the good fight, but it’s time to move on and use our vast talents to fight the better fights, the ones that benefit everyone — straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and any and everyone in between. These include ending the war; battling HIV/AIDS with care, prevention and treatment; providing affordable health and child care for everyone; eradicating poverty; reducing the wildly escalating gap between the rich and poor; ending violence and abuse of all kinds, reducing the numbers of guns on the streets; lowering the prison population, healing drug and other addictions; cleaning up the environment; and erasing prejudice of every kind and discrimination against anybody.
But in the meantime, what about the original question — should lesbians and gays have the right to marry? With the complexities of politics and PR in mind, let’s keep it simple. To the Democratic Presidential candidates who are generously taking part in this groundbreaking Logo/HRC debate, there’s only one answer: “Yes!” READ LINDA’S FULL POST
Nancylee Myatt (South of Nowhere):
[T]he top of the list for domestic issues has got to be our broken health care system. Nothing would more radically alter the disparity between rich and poor in this country than single-payer national health insurance.
How is it that we are the only major industrialized country in the world that believes health care is a privilege and not a right? Why do so many of our fellow citizens lose everything to catastrophic illness? How come people have to stay in jobs they don’t like or don’t offer them chance of advancement because of lack of health care portability? Why do insurance companies get to dump people from their rolls after years of premiums? READ NANCYLEE’S FULL POST
Emily Saliers (Indigo Girls):
It is critical that we elect a president with a very clear and strong plan for protecting the environment. We are all aware of climate change and its catastrophic consequences. We need a president who will support legislation that reduces greenhouse emissions; a president who emphasizes energy efficiency and conservation; and a president who recognizes that nuclear power is not “clean” energy. We need a president who knows that the only way to protect and heal the earth is to shift our current US energy paradigm away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy sources. If we don’t take care of the earth, all other issues become non-issues because we won’t survive as a species. READ EMILY’S FULL POST
Many right wing pols actually or cynically believe that God is speaking directly through them. God speaks through me too, but it’s in Aramaic and they fired all the gay translators. Those leaders have pontificated that homosexuality is immoral. They therefore believe they have the divine right to demean and deny our God-given LGBT identity, our marriages, our families, our military and civic service, our health, and our security in our own homeland. When they do that unto us, the best-dressed of their brethren, they diminish their own identities, unions, public service and security. LGBT Americans have to step up and call out their hypocrisies. READ KATE’S FULL POST
Visit VisibleVote08.com for more, including commentary by Martina Navratilova later today. And tune in for the historic forum tonight!