Monday saw President Barack Obama welcome Gays, Lesbians, Transgender, and Bisexuals to the White House. This was in honor Pride Month.
During the meeting, President Obama compared the current struggle of the Gay Community to that of the African American Civil Rights movement.
Obama, who was joined by his wife, Michelle, made the proclamation that he would put an end to some anti-gay laws. The first one of importance was the Defense of Marriage Act, which Obama said he would work on repealing. The other was to end the military policy of “Don’t ask, don’t tell”.
The “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy essentially hides homosexuality in the military. Recruits are not to be asked of their sexual orientation, nor admit that they are homosexuals. When a homosexual comes forward with their sexual orientation, they are subject to being discharged.
Obama stated that by stopping Americans who choose to fight for their country is detrimental to the United States and that sexual orientation should not be a determining factor in one’s ability to protect his nation.
Obama understands the struggle of the Gay Community and consoled the group members present on Monday. Obama told the attendees, “I know that many in this room don’t believe that progress has come fast enough, and I understand that, it’s not for me to tell you to be patient any more than it was for others to counsel patience to African-Americans who were petitioning for equal rights a half-century ago.”
As for the Defense of Marriage Act, it prohibits the United States government from officially recognizing marriages of the same sex. The Act holds up even in circumstances where states legalize same sex marriage.
Obama is also putting plans in motion to get transgender, lesbian, gay, and bisexual couples the same health care rights along with other benefits that heterosexual couples currently get in the United States. In addition, Obama also hopes to make stronger the laws about hate crimes and job opportunities founded on sexuality.
Obama has stated that “There are unjust laws to overturn and unfair practices to stop” and he plans to do so.