President Obama Delivers Gayest Inaugural speech Ever

obama

President Obama’s second inaugural ceremony was filled was filled with a lot of historic firsts.  Monday’s ceremony included the first woman and layperson to deliver an inaugural prayer, the first openly gay Latino poet to recite a work during an inaugural ceremony and the first Hispanic to administer the oath of office.

It also marked the first time that a U.S. president has acknowledged the struggle of millions of gay Americans during the historic speech. In fact, as Politico reports, President Obama is the first president to use the word “gay” in an inaugural address in reference to sexual orientation at all.

The first historic nod to the gay community came in reference to the Declaration of Independence’s mission that all are created equal and all deserve “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”  The president said that mission wouldn’t be complete until,”our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law— for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.”

The second nod came during a list of historic places in the civil rights struggle,”We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths — that all of us are created equal — is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall,” Obama said.

The fact that the President made the two references just feet away from the same Supreme Court Justices who will soon be deciding the fate of marriage equality in the country was not lost on more than one political commentator.

As historic as the speech is, the President still has some work to do if he hopes to seal his legacy as the “LGBT equality president.” As Chris Geidner over at BuzzFeed points out, service members’ same-sex spouses are still being denied “basic support from their service base communities” and transgender soldiers still can’t openly serve.  There’s also the matter of adding sexual orientation and gender identity to federal discrimination laws, so far the President has said little about supporting such a measure. Finally, as Geidner again points out, it isn’t clear just how far Obama will carry his support for marriage equality. Will he, for example, condemn state laws that prohibit same-sex marriage?

At any rate, with the repeal of “Don’t ask, Don’t Tell”,  the President’s recent “evolution” on marriage equality and this administration’s work on other LGBT issues, there’s no denying that President Obama has already made a lot of headway when it comes to securing equal rights for ALL Americans. In fact, when you stop and think about it, cliche’ aside, we really are better off then we were four years ago.

Watch the full speech below:

Video Campaign Aims to Educate through Personal Stories

Two groups have launched a nationwide video campaign meant to help the general public better understand what it means to be a transgender person.

According to The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD),”I AM: Trans People Speak is a project created by the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC) and sponsored by GLAAD to raise awareness about the diversity of transgender communities. It will lift the voices of transgender individuals, as well as their families, friends, and allies.”

Bay Windows reports,”The video series and written testimonials illuminate the realities and challenges of being transgender. Those participating in the campaign will discuss their experiences in their communities, workplaces and families, as well as their thoughts on the current state of transgender awareness and equality.”

The project’s main website, transpeoplespeak.org, contains stories by dozens of transgender people from across the country.  It also has an area for individuals to upload their own personal stories, as well as information regarding gender identity issues.

GLAAD spokesperson Herndon Graddick tells Bay Windows,”These stories will not only empower members of the transgender community who rarely see relatable stories, but also educate Americans everywhere about the fact that the community is a valuable part of the fabric of our culture. The campaign will also shine a light on the high level of discrimination that our transgender brothers and sisters continue to face in schools, the workplace and in their own neighborhoods.”

The project was originally launched regionally in 2010 by the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition.

Click HERE to visit the transpeoplespeak.org website.

 

 

Watch: Parents of Transgender Youth Say “It Gets Better”

In what is being touted as the first “It Gets Better” video of its kind, the In the Life Media produced video features,”parents from PFLAG’s support group for families of transgender children sharing their personal struggles to understand their child’s needs and find support for both themselves and their families.”

According to the producers website,”In The Life Media was founded in 1992 on the premise that visibility in media is vital to achieving equality and social justice for LGBT people. IN THE LIFE, produced by In The Life Media, was the first and remains the only national LGBT issue-oriented television program to feature the faces, voices and stories shaping the gay experience.”

Watch it Again: Daniel Radcliffe for The Trevor Project

If you missed Tuesday night’s emotional episode of Glee, we won’t spoil it for you, other then to say it is quite possibly the most important episode the gang at William McKinley has ever done.

We will, however, recommend the Public Service Announcement that aired during the broadcast featuring Harry Potter‘s Daniel Radcliffe:

 

 

Visit http://www.thetrevorproject.org to learn more about The Trevor Project. If you or someone you know ever needs help, call our 24/7 Lifeline at 866.488.7386. It’s toll-free and confidential.

MTV to Air “It Gets Better” Special Tuesday

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past year and a half, you have no doubt heard of the “It gets Better” campaign.

Started by advice columnist Dan Savage and his husband, Terry Miller, in 2010 as a response to a rash of suicides within the LGBTQIA community, more than 40,000 people have contributed to the project, including Idaho’s only openly gay state lawmaker, State Senator Nicole Lefavour:

 

 

The MTV  special will highlight the stories of three teens for whom it has indeed, “got better.”

David Wiegand over at the San Fransisco Chronicle ,”A single film about three young people won’t, by itself, make a universal happy ending for every troubled LGBT kid in the United States. But it’s doing its job if it reaches just one of them.”

Watch it Tuesday night at 10:00 pm MT on MTV.

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