Saturday, January 10, 2009

Falling futher behind

Andrew Sullivan has some pretty damning words for both the Republican and Democratic parties in this country.

When I came to America from Britain, the gay rights movement was way ahead here of the old country. No longer. Here is a list of the most powerful openly gay people in Britain. The whole list is a staggering contrast with the US. At the top:

1. Spencer Livermore, 32, Director of Political Strategy, 10 Downing Street
2. Nick Brown, 57, Deputy Chief Whip, MP for Newcastle upon Tyne East and Wallsend
3. Peter Mandelson, 54, EU Trade Commissioner. He's back in the cabinet as Business secretary and Brown's main spin doctor.
4. Angela Eagle, 46, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, MP for Wallasey
5. Ben Bradshaw, 47, Minister of State for Health Services, MP for Exeter
6. Andrew Pierce, 46, Assistant Editor, Daily Telegraph. Julian Glover, Matthew Parris partner, is opinion editor at The Guardian.

The bigotry that infects the Republican party and the cynicism and cowardice that dominates the Democrats on this issue prevent such success and integration in America. And yet many of the causes that have prevailed in Britain - marriage equality and military service, for example - were pioneered on this side of the Atlantic.


I'm reminded of the conclusion Lincoln's 2nd inaugural address-

With malice toward none; with charity for all...let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds...to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.


Perhaps this applies to our nation in general, but it has advice for both sides of the so-called "gay divide".

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