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Stuart Milk: Obama is a ‘no-brainer’ for the LGBT community

Nephew of slain gay rights pioneer says DNC host city, state critical for fall election
Friday, August 31, 2012

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — President Barack Obama’s campaign has put a premium on North Carolina, a swing state that turned blue in 2008 for the first time since Jimmy Carter first ran for president in 1976.

Placing the Democratic National Convention in North Carolina’s largest city was no accident, but the campaign is doing much more to ensure the state remains in Obama’s column come November.

Convention and campaign officials on the ground have used the national political event to mobilize volunteers for the president’s reelection bid. Members of the public seeking credentials to attend Obama’s renomination speech at Bank of America Stadium on Thursday were required to complete at least three different, three-hour volunteer shifts.

Jennifer Hogan, Hogan Imaging

Stuart Milk came to Charlotte's local LGBT Pride festival last weekend on behalf of the president's reelection campaign.

The Obama campaign is also reaching out to key constituents, including LGBT voters. Campaign surrogate Stuart Milk, co-founder of the Harvey Milk Foundation named in his late uncle’s name, was called to Charlotte last week. The campaign flew him up from Florida to speak at the annual Charlotte’s annual LGBT Pride festival last weekend.

Milk told qnotes that choosing Obama this November is a “no-brainer” for members of the LGBT community. He’s been inspired by Obama and his administration’s work toward equality since first meeting the president three summers ago.

“The first lady said, ‘We have a lot of work to do,’” Milk recalled. “And, the president said, ‘We will get it done.’ Everything we talked about, they’ve gotten it done.”

The Obama Administration, Milk said has been a source of “never-ending and consistent support for the LGBT community.”

The support isn’t just given at home. Internationally, Obama’s pro-equality stances have had an impact.

“That often gets lost,” Milk said. “When they give me speaking points, they never mention or tout what they’ve done globally but I can see the faces of all the young people I’ve met in Budapest or Ankara and in Istanbul and in El Salvador who hear the president supporting them and they feel connected.”

In contrast, Republicans have offered no reason for LGBT voters to cast their support toward the GOP ticket.

“We haven’t even heard anything even remotely inclusive from the other side,” Milk said. “We have too many young people who die everyday becasue they don’t feel included. We have too many who can’t celebrate their relationship and get the full benefits of first-class citizenship because of what this Republican-led Congress has done.”

North Carolina, among other states, will be critical to Obama’s success, said Milk. In fact, Milk believes the Tar Heel State’s electoral votes — 15 in all — will be among several key deciding factors this fall.

“North Carolina is one of the most important states,” Milk asserted. “It is a state that was carried by just a few thousand votes (in 2008). It is critical that we win in North Carolina in order to keep the White House.”

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7 more reader comments:

  1. bullshit! theres no way i would vote for that charming fascist (NDAA, DRONES, GO READ THE NEWS PAPER). human rights are gay rights. you don’t speak for me lgbtq nation

    Posted on Friday, August 31, 2012 at 6:08pm
  2. ^ hahahaha

    Posted on Friday, August 31, 2012 at 6:14pm
  3. Can’t understand how there are gays out here supporting the republican vote. It’s the equivalent of Jews cheering for Hitler. I get the fiscal responsibility sound bite, but republicans are no better at it than democrats.

    Posted on Friday, August 31, 2012 at 7:13pm
  4. From the words of my brother-in-law Adam Thompson……….

    When you cast your vote for Mitt Romney and the GOP platform this November you are casting your vote for policies that assert that I am not equal to you.

    You are casting your vote for policies that would strip my sister and her partner of the right to parent my nieces.

    You are casting your vote for policies that say what I have with my partner is not only disordered, but sinful.

    You are casting your vote and saying to me and every other gay person in this country that we are not deserving of the same equality and liberty that you clearly take for granted.

    So as you wake up this morning and look at your wife or husband, consider for a moment that this basic right; the right to declare your love and form the basic foundation of our culture – the family – is a right that currently I do not have.

    So as you go to your job, consider for a moment that this basic right; the to work is a right I do not have and can be fired simply because I am gay.

    You may be able to establish some cognitive dissonance from the issue and rationalize that this vote is about “jobs” – well I say to you, yes it is about jobs. Only this vote is more than about creating jobs, it is about my right to have one … period.

    You may be able to establish some cognitive dissonance from the issue and rationalize that this vote is about the “economy” – well I say to you, yes it is about the economy. Only this vote is more than just the economy, it is about my right to enter into that economy with my partner and get all the benefits you and your spouse enjoy.

    Your vote for the GOP candidate and their platform is saying to me that you care more about the money in your pocket than you do about my basic right to earn money for mine.

    Your vote for the GOP candidate and their platform is saying to me that you care more about your ability to hold a gun than you do about my ability to hold my partner’s hand.

    So yes, it offends me. But more than that it hurts me. Because for you, who will cast these votes in November, what you are saying to me is that I, as your family or your friend, mean so little to you that you can knowingly vote away what little rights I do have to simply coexist equally with you.

    So for me this election is about liberty … my liberty.

    So when you claim you are less free because of Obama … it offends me.

    When you claim your vote is rationalized about your priorities of economic principles … it offends me.

    That you would so easily cast a vote for a party who spent less time creating jobs and more time to ensure that I can never have one … it offends me.

    So when I tell you that it offends me, do not be surprised, do not try to rationalize to me what choice you are making … you are choosing to say that I am not equal to you.

    And that is not just offensive it’s hurtful in ways that you, who have most likely never had to face a day without your life, liberty and pursuit of happiness constantly questioned and threatened, may not realize … and in the most extreme cases these liberties are taken in violent acts of unspeakable murders whose details are so disgusting it shakes every one of us to the core to think that one day we too could end up tied to fence to face the dawn with only blood and tears to comfort the soul that is slipping away from us as we take our last breaths.

    It hurts me and my community so deeply that simply to cope with the knowledge that our friends and family would do this to us we pull away from you and everyone like you.

    Because when you say we are not equal to you based on who we are not what we do, then how can we be friends? How can we establish a relationship that is predicated on your belief that I am not deserving of the freedoms you so carelessly throw away?

    Do not preach to me about liberty anymore, you have lost that privilege … with every Romney “like”, with every GOP support … you are stealing liberty from me and that my friends is not only Un-American, it’s Un-Patriotic, and its just plain mean.

    Posted on Friday, August 31, 2012 at 7:18pm
  5. If Obama is standing up for gay rights, why did it take him until right before the election to let everyone know. He should have been pushing for the equality from the start, instead he waited until all the props were voted down and before the election. He’s just trying to get our votes. 10 to 1 if he’s re-elected, he’ll forget everything he ever said about standing up for our rights…OBAMA MUST GO!!!!!

    Posted on Saturday, September 1, 2012 at 7:23am
  6. If he’s so for gay rights, why is DOMA and all of the policies it relates to still intact? One reason: he’s only in favor for our votes. He aint getting mine.

    Posted on Saturday, September 1, 2012 at 2:36pm
  7. Why did it take him until just recently?? anyone got an explanation??

    Posted on Sunday, September 2, 2012 at 9:26am