For those in who still fight for equality, gay rights shouldn’t be dismissed as a back-burner issue.. .Groups like the National Organization for Marriage, major funders of campaigns opposing same-sex marriage, have been clear that although they don’t consider gay marriage “the number 1 issues these elections [it’s] still important and Republicans abandon it at their peril.”. . . For every encouraging win such as Jim Gray, who was elected Mayor of Lexington, Kentucky, and David Cicilline, who won a Congressional seat in Rhode Island – both are openly gay – there are discouraging examples like Tea Party backed Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.
Bachmann has asserted that gays are “a part of Satan” and that being gay is “personal enslavement.” She also spoke out against the federal hate crimes bill protecting gays and lesbians.
On the side of progress, California elected Jerry Brown as its new governor (hugely positive as he supports same-sex marriage and refuses to defend Proposition 8); however, Missouri elected Republican Vicky Hartzler to Congress, who is largely considered one of the most virulent anti-gay Republicans.
With a well documented history of stigmatization and marginalization coupled with the recent jolt from a surge of anti-gay violence, it’s clear these are critical campaign results. The distance the gay rights movement has progressed is commensurate to the distance yet- to-be covered. The shift to the right represented by Bachmann and Hartzler will replenish other anti-equality politicians, as has happened historically. We must monitor these newly elected officials in order to organize and to respond together—to preserve equal rights we must understand them as just that, rights, not privileges.Elected Anti-Gay Politicians Will Undermine Rights | IMAGINE 2050