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Courage and Patriotism

Pete Buttigieg

Sixty years ago in 1959, when I was a clueless little kid, it was impossible to imagine that the son of a Black African Muslim and a white Christian mother from Kansas would one day become the most intelligent progressive President this nation would ever know.  It was beyond imagining that he would be followed by the most vulgar, crude, corrupt, ignorant, segregationist, treasonous president in history.

Given all that, it is not at all difficult to imagine and hope for the election of a brilliant young hero who is a veteran, a highly educated Rhodes Scholar, who happens to be gay.  37 year old, US Navy Reserve LT Pete Buttigeig, Mayor of South Bend Indiana, who was deployed to Afghanistan, is the third most popular Democratic candidate for President as of late October.  He is just behind a radical socialist female 70 year old Senator and a 76 year old former Vice President.  If you think his Maltese surname is a bit funny or difficult to say, don't forget that America elected our first Black President with the middle name Hussein.  And try to forget that the current president, in the true spirit of American diversity, is the grandson of a pimp.

The incredible thought occurred to me, how much different American history might be had Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Hamilton become our first highly educated, gay veteran, mixed race President. Imagine! But, that will have to wait for a future article.

In October, Mayor Pete's campaign provided Gay Military Signal with his 'Comprehensive Plan to Secure A New Era of Equality for LGBTQ+ Americans.'  It is promoted as "breaking down the walls of exclusion to secure full equality in Health, Youth and Families, Community, Justice, Honor, and Leadership."

Imagine being free of fear that being who you are could cause you to be bullied in school, or threaten your job security, or your patriotic desire o serve your country, or your confidence that you can aspire to become anything you are capable of regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation, and everything else.  Remember that President Obama accomplished a lot of all that, and that the current pseudo president has revoked almost all of it.

Buttigieg's plan proposes to provide 'workplace protections, a new national mentorship program that will build up a sense of belonging among LGBTQ+ youth, and will will ensure anti-discrimination is the law of the land, and it will work to put an end to the violence that is taking the lives of transgender Americans.'

Specifically, the plan lists the following:

  • End discrimination against LGBTQ+ people by passing the Equality Act and rescind the Trump Administration’s efforts to strip protections against discrimination.

  • Launch the We Belong National Mentorship Program for LGBTQ+ youth, which will call on leaders in the public and private sectors to mentor and strengthen the sense of belonging they need to thrive. 

  • Improve access to and quality of health care for LGBTQ+ people.

  • End the HIV/AIDS epidemic by 2030 by restoring investments into researching a cure and ensuring access to affordable medication.

  • Protect LGBTQ+ students from bullying by providing resources for school districts to develop training programs to support students targeted by harassment. 

  • End “conversion therapy.”

  • Ban medically unnecessary surgeries on intersex infants and children. 

  • Protect the rights of all LGBTQ+ families by prohibiting discrimination against adoptive and foster parents and passing the FAMILY ACT to provide 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave to care for a new child or sick loved one, including chosen family members. 

  • End youth homelessness as part of a comprehensive housing agenda. 

  • Ensure the safety of all LGBTQ+ people, especially transgender women of color, by vigorously enforcing hate crimes prevention laws and properly training law enforcement.

  • Rescind the transgender military ban and grant honorable discharges and appropriate benefits to the over 13,000 veterans discharged solely based on being LGBTQ+.

  • Lead on LGBTQ+ rights around the globe, including by strengthening protections for LGBTQ+ immigrants and refugees.

  • Celebrate LGBTQ+ history and culture, including by expanding the representation of LGBTQ+ people and history in our National Parks System.

Buttigieg's LGBTQ campaign promo's introduction correctly reminded us that "Fifty years ago," the "resistance at the Stonewall Inn" was "primarily led by transgenderwomen of color like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera," and others.  They also remind us that  "the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,
end(ed) a policy that forced service members to choose between the person they loved and the country they loved."  They remind us that under the current administration transgender youths often cannot use school restrooms appropriate to their gender identity nor aspire to patriotically serve our nation, and that LGBTQ Americans continue to live in fear of violent assaults.

The promo goes on at great length and you can read every word at:

Suffice it to say that as a proud gay veteran, I think he'd be our best next President.

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