One of our jobs as LGBT community membersTrans Progressive Thursday, February 23rd, 2012
Commentary: Trans Progressive
Feb.16, one-time Republican candidate for president, Pat Buchanan had an article posted to The American Conservative’s Web site, entitled Blacklisted, But Not Beaten. In the article, Buchanan’s first line in the piece was, “My days as a political analyst at MSNBC have come to an end.”
Buchanan highlighted in his piece how the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) had called out what I’d describe as Buchanan’s anti-LGBT rhetoric, as well as a string of statements that prompted the Anti-Defamation League, Color of Change and Media Matters to also call him out for what they perceived as bigoted views and inflammatory language.
In blaming African Americans, Jewish people and members of the LGBT community for the end of his career as a commentator with MSNBC, Buchanan admonishes readers about the perils of defiance against “liberal elites.”
“Defy them, and they will go after the network where you work, the newspapers that carry your column, the conventions that invite you to speak. If all else fails, they go after the advertisers.”
In another recent story, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) called on CNN to fire their commentator Roland Martin for Tweeting an inappropriate, anti-LGBT comment during the Super Bowl. On his Twitter account, Martin had posted, “If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham’s H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him!”
Martin was suspended from CNN, and ended up meeting with representatives of GLAAD about his Super Bowl Tweet.
So are LGBT community activists and non-profit organizations trying to silence their critics? Well, not exactly.
There is a Bayard Rustin quote from his 1986 essay From Montgomery to Stonewall:
“[T]he job of the gay community is not to deal with extremists who would castigate us or put us on an island and drop an H-bomb on us. The fact of the matter is that there is a small percentage of people in America who understand the true nature of the homosexual community. There is another small percentage who will never understand us. Our job is not to get those people who dislike us to love us. Nor was our aim in the civil rights movement to get prejudiced white people to love us. Our aim was to try to create the kind of America, legislatively, morally, and psychologically, such that even though some whites continued to hate us, they could not openly manifest that hate. That’s our job today: To control the extent to which people can publicly manifest antigay sentiment.”
And with the thought of anti-LGBT sentiments in mind, Bayard Rustin gave us good advice in that quote above. What Pat Buchanan calls blacklisting can also be called responding to corporate-enabled free speech with free speech of our own.
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