The principles that rule this blog

Principles that will govern my thoughts as I express them here (from my opening statement):

  • Freedom of the individual should be as total as possible, limited only by the fact that nobody should be free to cause physical injury to another, or to deprive another person of his freedoms.
  • Government is necessary primarily to provide those services that private enterprise won't, or won't at a price that people can afford.
  • No person has a right to have his own beliefs on religious, moral, political, or other controversial issues imposed on others who do not share those beliefs.

I believe that Abraham Lincoln expressed it very well:

“The legitimate object of government is to do for a community of people whatever they need to have done, but cannot do, at all, or cannot
so well do, for themselves — in their separate, individual capacities.”

Comments will be invited, and I will attempt to reply to any comments that are offered in a serious and non-abusive manner. However, I will not tolerate abusive or profane language (my reasoning is that this is my blog, and so I can control it; I wouldn't interfere with your using such language on your own!)

If anyone finds an opinion that I express to be contrary to my principles, they are welcome to point this out. I hope that I can make a rational case for my comments. Because, in fact, one label I'll happily accept is rationalist.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Is President Obama really pro-gay-rights?

A reader named William Hart posted a comment to yesterday's post. In it he expresses the opinion that President Obama should be re-elected in 2012 to ensure progress in gay rights. I think Mr. Hart is totally misinformed, and I think that more than a response to a comment is called for, so I'm making a full post.

President Obama talks the gay rights line. But has he done anything he could to further the cause of gay rights? On Jan. 20, 2009 he became President. That very day he could have issued an executive order repealing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." He could have done so at any time since that day — but he has not. It took a court order to repeal DADT.

True, earlier this year he (or his Attorney General, but this is really the same thing) said he will cease fighting to uphold the "Defense of Marriage Act." But it took him two years to get to this point. Why did the Obama Administration fight to uphold DOMA for the first two years of its existence?

Among the people fighting to replace President Obama, the most anti-gay are probably Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum. Does anyone really think that Barack Obama will speed the progress of gay rights any more than Bachmann or Santorum? What might he do to help -- and why hasn't he done it already? Please answer, in specifics.

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