Friday, September 17, 2010

An Important Message to President Barack Obama

By Madison Reed

President Obama, are you reading this?  LGBT Americans would love nothing more than to join with you in becoming the most beloved President in American history.  You have that potential.  You are our first President of mixed-race and mixed religious heritage.  For the LGBT community, you made specific, very clear promises to end discrimination and inequality stacked against us.  We are expecting a greater sense of justice and fairness from you, and a heart with a greater capacity to feel our pain and suffering.

But if you allow our wretched misery to continue, by not acting to stop the injustices that we bear, with further delay, and you continue to shock us by defending cruel and despicable, unconstitutional laws that were created knowing full well that they would end up harming LGBT American citizens, then how can you honestly believe we're going to continue to support you, or how do you believe we're going to feel about your presidency, of all American presidents?  LGBT Americans have waited too long for change already.  When you told us that change had come, we believed every word that came from your mouth!  We believed you when you said during your campaign that there would be no discrimination against LGBT Americans in your White House or in your Department of Justice were you to become president of the United States.

I have been viciously separated from the person I adore by the laws of my own country, while my sweetheart's life is always in peril.  The message I get from my country, is that it's good and proper for me - because I'm a deviant queer - to live a hard, lonely life, pay higher taxes without the same constitutional rights, or leave my family, friends and career, sell my house and settle in another country and have a subsistence living, or simply die from the grief of loneliness. You're probably aware of medical studies that have recently indicated that people who are lonely die earlier.

LGBT American soldiers are still being discharged because they're too honest to lie about their sexual orientation and hide whom they love.  LGBT Americans are still being denied the legal status and recognition of marriage by most states and by the federal government.  Because of this one ignoble act of discrimination, we loose 1,136 rights and benefits that are conferred at the federal level ,and pay higher taxes and higher insurance premiums.  Immigration rights for foreign born family members is one of those federally conferred rights that LGBT Americans are denied.  LGBT Americans with foreign partners, whether we're legally married from a marriage equality state like Iowa or Massachusetts, or we can't get married due to discriminatory immigration law that prevents us from sponsoring our partners for immigration family uniting purposes, have been suffering year after year for decades.  During the Bush administration, Chris Bentley, spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security's Citizen and Immigration Services said, and I'll quote him:

"There are no immigration benefits available to [gays] based on their relationship.  With that said, there's certainly nothing that says a U.S. citizen cannot move to another country."
(Ref: 01-08/news/ exiled-by- love/)

In my state of West Virginia, I can be fired from my job because I'm gay, and told to my face by my boss that I'm being fired because I'm a faggot; refused by a landlord to rent an apartment; run out of a neighborhood, and so on, because I have no protection from this sort of discrimination.  Two years ago, after receiving numerous threats by local right-wing individuals who said that they were having meetings with local authorities, I called my state human rights commission.  I was told by the person in charge of the commission that for people with my "lifestyle choice" there was nothing that the state could do to protect me.  My state ignored my request for help because of my "lifestyle choice"?  Really?

Love is love Mr. President, whether you're gay or straight.  Do you seriously believe that the Creator of the Universes, cares who you love, who you sleep with, or whether you're a Christian, a Muslim or a Hindu?  Love has the same intensity, the same commitment, and the same feeling of yearning for those whom you love, whether you're homosexual, bisexual, transgender, heterosexual or impotent.  Regardless of excuses we hear, we know that as Chief Executive of the United States and chief defender of the Constitution of the United States, you can use your executive privilege if necessary, to protect American Citizens from harm.

We are expecting you to fulfill your promises to us, and to do something that will show the world for a change, that the United States government cares about the common citizens of the United States.  LGBT Americans are now the most maligned, misunderstood and abused people.  Step up, fulfill what will please God, forget about the bigots who will never, ever support you, and be the President that who finally puts and end to all hateful, evil discrimination!  We will rally behind you and a wave of love will bless your presidency if you will do this.

Sincerely yours,


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