Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Where I Think We Can Go Now

This last week has been so much for me. I've been delighted. I've been hurt. I've been in mourning. I've been in celebration. I've even been sick in bed!

And especially since I've been sick, and again today when I had to renew my state ID at the DMV, I've had some time to think about what we can do next. As someone with Latinos & Asian-Americans and Arab-Americans my family, I've been so proud that so many in this nation voted for our first President that also happens to be a person of color. But as a gay person, I've also been extremely depressed that a majority of voters in three states (including the state where I presently live) decided to deny gay & lesbian couples the basic right of marriage. I feel like part of me wants to feel proud of this nation while the other part of me is still embarrassed of the continuing oppression of at least 10% of this nation's people.

So where do we go from here? First off, do whatever you can to help the ACLU & other progressive legal organizations as they fight the Florida & California marriage bans in court. Amidst the bad news of these two evil, discriminatory initiatives passing, the good news is that they're so poorly written that we stand a good chance of defeating them in the courts. And if the courts side with us, it will be nearly impossible for the homophobic radical right bigots to try this in The Golden State & The Sunshine State ever again!

Also, we need to get into the American people's heads that marriage bans are segregation. Remember when racists said only 50 years ago that "separate but equal" is AOK, thereby Jim Crow segregation laws should stand? Well, they're doing it again. This time, the homophobic bigots in California tricked voters here into thinking that "separate but equal" domestic partnership agreements are AOK. And in Florida, they went even further in banning ANY AND ALL LEGAL PROTECTIONS for same-sex couples! We need to educate people that love is love is love and that all relationships between two loving adult people deserve the same equal protection under the law... And that the ONLY way for us to achieve this is by granting full marriage equality to everyone!

So now that we've talked about civil rights on the state fronts, let's talk about the national scene. Fortunately, we have better news there. We have a Democratic President & a Democratic-controlled Congress. So what should we now demand from Washington?

First off, how about fixing our broken economy? How about energy independence? How about universal health care? How about bringing troops home from Iraq? How about taking action on all these items?

Let's face it: Our economy will need one heck of a stimulus to recover! And perhaps instead of simply encouraging us to buy more crap from China, our government should take action to secure the long-term health of our economy. This means creating new jobs in the growing renewable energy sector. This means using the money we'll save by ending the Iraq occupation to fund investment in American infrastructure. This means making our workforce more attractive in the global marketplace by solving our national health care crisis.

I know the Republicans now say that "we can't afford any of this". However, the truth is that we can't afford NOT to take action on these matters. Frankly, we need the extra money invested in our economy. This is why President Obama, Speaker Pelosi, and Majority Leader Reid shouldn't hesitate to enact a BIG agenda that addresses all that'swrong with our economy.

So do you agree with my agenda? Perhaps not? Well, then tell me why! Let's finish formulating our agenda so we can get it done!


Dizzy said...

Might I add the development of a National AIDS Strategy to this agenda? We spend a whole lot of taxpayer money on AIDS both at home and abroad, but most of the money spent domestically doesn't go to the patients. We need to target the monies that we spend, and hold the ASO's more accountable for the federal monies they receive. We should be spending more than an average of 4% of the federal earmarks on direct patient care (not including the 5% used for AIDS Drug Assistance Programs).

Whaddaya think?

LakersFan said...

I'm with you! I think we can kill multiple birds with one stone with guaranteed Universal Health Care. We can help the economy, help American families, help the auto industry, help small businesses, increase entrepeneurship, and help people with AIDS/HIV, cancer, diabetes, and other chronic diseases.

It's a win-win-win-win issue.

Dizzy said...

I believe I had floated my idea for making Universal Health Care affordable for the Federal Government by removing the words "over 65" from the Medicare Statute. This would allow for Americans to have the option of a single payer system that has 2% overhead, and would help spur competition between the Commercial HMO's to match cost and benefits to what the government provides. We could then take the funds from Ryan White CARE, and other such programs and funnel them into Medicare to better bolster the system. There would quite probably be a surplus that could then be applied to paying down the National Debt.

LakersFan said...

Great plan Dizzy! It's simple. It works. And it will help the American people and our economy.

atdnext said...

LakersFan & Dizzy-

Good discussion. And great health care plan! I don't know why anyone would object to Medicare for All. Why not extend America's best run health care plan to everyone? Seriously, this needs to be done ASAP!

And yes, I'm writing this while I'm sick and back in bed. Ugh, just as I was starting to move around again...

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