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Knee-Jerks

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The swiftboating of Obama is in high gear. His latest sin? Being a member of a church where his preacher, reverend Jeremiah Wright had the audacity to speak angrily about how the American government has been treating people of color at home and around the world.

Well, we can relate to the dilemma facing Barack Obama and his "preacher problems."

As lesbian civil rights activists, we spend much of our time trying to convince regular folks that LGBTQ people deserve equal treatment under the law.

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And by LGBTQ, we mean everyone... even those who do not live or look like us.

And because we choose to dress and behave in a manner that is deemed to be "more acceptable," we are able to pass and even when we are outed, we are considered "less offensive" because we are not trying to be the "in your face" sort of of dykes.

Nonetheless, we have and will continue to freely and proudly associate with and relate to those whose very looks offend our oppressors.

Have you been to a Pride Parade or an Equal Rights march and seen all of the varieties of L's G's B's T's and Q's who march under the rainbow flag? We have.

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Although we are white, middle class 50 something grandmothers, when we march or protest or attend a rally, we do so along side the Dykes on Bikes and the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence (see photo of us at right with a Sister in San Francisco).

Whatever LGBTQ people say and do -- no matter how radical our words, looks or actions seem to the general public -- because we share a common oppression, we are all in the same proverbial boat.

Despite the differences between us, we all deserve to be treated equally under the law.

That includes the right to freedom of speech, freedom of association and freedom of religion.

As long as we are not violating the law, our rights should not be abridged or denied because we do not look, speak or act like "mainstream" America.

It saddens but does not surprise us to Obama being taken down for daring to belong to an Afro-centered church whose pastor used fiery rhetoric to validate the experience of his mostly Black congregation.

It is obscene that the mainstream media is allowing the rabid right to feed the anti-Obama frenzy as they also fail to point to the wing-nuts on the right who daily spew similar hateful words.

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And while we are on the subject of crazy ministers, we hope the media will use this opportunity to highlight the close connection between the Reverend Moon and the Republican Party -- especially the Bush family.

More than anything, Obama's preacher is only telling the truth about America and how we have behaved badly toward people of color in our own country and abroad.

Many Americans have a knee-jerk defensive reaction to an expression of frustration and anger at American foreign and domestic policy that has resulted in a collapsing economy, widening gap between the haves and have-nots, erosion of our civil liberties, degrading environment, high prices, loss of jobs, hatred of all that is America throughout the world, and more.

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http://www.rainbowlaw.com

Rainbow Law is Elisia and Carrie Ross-Stone, lesbian civil rights activists, life partners and grandmothers. We own and operate Rainbow Law, an online service offering legal information and free and affordable legal documents for gay and lesbian (more...)
 

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