Pam’s House Blend has a provocative post regarding Barack Obama entitled, “Why is Obama touring with ‘ex-gay’ homophobe Donnie McClurkin? 

Part of the post contains a statement by a spokesman for Obama: “‘This is another example of how Barack Obama is defying conventional wisdom about how politics is done and giving new meaning to meeting people at the grassroots level,’ Joshua DuBois, the campaign’s religious affairs director, said in a release. ‘This concert tour is going to bring new people into the political process and engage people of faith in an unprecedented way.'” 

McClurkin, being discussed and critiqued on Keith Boykin’s site, has the following: “Comparing gays and lesbians to liars, McClurkin explains, ‘There are certain things like, you know, anybody who has a lying problem; they get to the point where they hate being so, having such a lack of character that they make a change.'”  So, McClurkin, an “ex-gay” who managed to “pray away the gay,” demeans the validity and Godliness of same-sex love and it is with such a person that Obama is now aligning himself by going on a “concert tour” with him.

So, Barack Obama is aligning himself with the likes of Donnie McClurkin, undoubtedly in an attempt to court the Black Church vote, playing on the homophobia of a lot of its clergy and members, as well as in his undoubtedly futile attempt to win over some “conservative” religious and even non-religious votes. 

He strikes me as being another political whore who is more than willing to throw LGBT people under the bus to gain some votes to propel himself into the White House.

Notice: With the exception of Dennis Kuchinich and Mike Gravel, none of the Democrats seeking the Presidential nomination is in favor of same-sex marriage and, beyond their paying lip service with the most mealy mouthed expressions of their desire for equality (whatever that means in the context of their denial of full and equal civil rights for all of our citizens), they really don’t seem to me to give a damn about the fate and fortune of LGBT people.

Just as the non-inclusive ENDA bill throws our Transgendered brothers and sisters under the bus for pathetic incremental perceived gains, that, when you read the bill, shows there to be so many loopholes that to pass that non-inclusive bill is to actually impede equality and retard future attempts at full equality, Obama and most other “liberals” are more than willing to demean and deny dignity and civil rights to our LGBT brothers and sisters.

Maybe such betrayal is poetic justice for LGB people and those “Gay Rights” organizations that seek incrementalism at the expense of others, and who capitulate to political expediency at the expense of principle (See my October 16th post, “SEXUAL ORIENTATION AND GENDER EXPRESSION”), as that is what the Obamas of the “liberal” political world are more than willing to do to to them in the guise of “…meeting people at the grassroots level.” 

Unless LGBT people and allies stand together, and settle for nothing less than full and equal civil rights, and all the dignity that those rights confer on people, the more the LGBT communities will court the contempt evinced not only by the reactonaries in the political and religious arenas, but also by the “liberals” in those arenas. 

When political expediency and/or downright selfishness is allowed to trump our standing together and fighting for the basic principles of equality for all LGBT people, that pathetic betrayal encourages the demeaning treatment of  LGBT people by assorted politicians, clergy, and the lemmings who follow them, and also leads to the fragmentation and increasing political impotence of the LGBT communities, as is evidenced by both the reactionary as well as the “liberal” politicians, one of whom will occupy the White House in 2008, and who will make judicial appointments consistent with his/her ideological agenda of exclusion, prejudice, and discrimination of LGBT people; continue to set the tone where such exclusion, prejudice, and discrimination is viewed as “acceptable” in all too many segments of religious and secular society!

[Also posted on A Christian Voice For Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, And Transgender Rights]

Jerry Maneker

Jerry Maneker