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06 February 2009

Comments

DFS

good news.

the issue seems pretty simple to me..if you accept the federal funds you should have to abide by the federal nondiscrimination rules

albert

I'd prefer there was no faith-based council it has no place in government. But if there's going to be, I'm glad it' s going to hopefully reject some of the homophobia inherent in so much modern religion.

M. Mark

A very good example of tolerance, and inclusion. Now let's see how the grantmaking goes, and hopefully LGBT affirming churches are included.

Keith C

Promising news indeed.

Bruce K

That giant sucking sound you just heard was the implosion of several dozen right wing evangelical preachers' heads imploding. That being said, I think the job should be eliminated and there should be no Faith Based government anything. The churches get enough tax free money from their exploited "flocks" to do their "good works", they don't need taxpayer money. Government has no business dabbling in church affairs and the church has no business in State affairs. The churches should keep the flock out of government.

But it seems the government, especially this administration, is determined to jump into bed with the evangelicals. That being said I feel a lot more comfortable a gay man, especially a black gay man, is overseeing the faith based funding.

Nicholas

I'm sorry but this man will not have that much influence with Obama and his religious policy so with that said let it be...

CA

Nicholas, why do you say that? Do you know something we don't?

I'm happy Obama appointed a gay man especially a black gay man to this council.

Nicholas

Okay let's see...Gay man appointed to the faith based council, days after the original members are announced and after gays complain.

Compare to openly gay Bishop Gene Robinson named to inauguration events weeks after Rick Warren was announced and after gays complained. Sound familiar?

I'm not saying this isn't a welcome addition. It is. But clearly this man was not the first choice of the White House and is another attempt at damage control. But I will be extremely interested in seeing what influence he has. I am afraid the churches receiving these federal funds will continue to discriminate against gays. Now the White House has some cover.

M. Mark

Nicholas you make some good points but I am still hoping for the best.

Let's see how this works out for a few months then see if Fred Davie is an advocate for LGBTs or just window dressing. I'm looking at Mr. Davie's biography and don't beleive he would allow himself to be used.

FREELEO

i agree, nicholas made some good points but the lgbt community has been complaining about things for years to little or no avail. we finally have a president that hears our community and is trying to include us in the process. we have got to give president obama a chance. have we ever seen a president attempt to respond so quickly to the concerns of so man people at one time? he said he knew how to multitask. i'm becoming a believer. no one would blame him if he got absorbed in trying to get this stimulus package passed, yet he still has time to make sure there is some (black) sgl representation on this faith based board. for those of us who are believers, let us pray for this president and the nation.

Luther

Interesting development, but, until it is rescinded that they can get money and discriminate, I don't see him getting anything done with these rabid, homophobic preachers. As long as these so called Christians can hide behind hate with a Bible, Torah or Koran, they will do it, and, all the while get tax payer money, which is wrong and should be illegal.

Corey

Freeleo, no offense but the president is supposed to "multitask." It's not very difficult. He does have a staff of hundreds of advisers working at the White House and there are staff and advisers on Faith Based Initiatives. It's perfectly logical to assume the Faith office is closely monitoring the blog reaction and statements by LGBT leaders. It's not like they didn't anticipate this problem.

I'm wishing for the best too. I want the new president and his programs to succeed. I also understand there is an economic crisis that takes priority but it is incumbent upon LGBTs, especially black LGBTs, to lobby for ourselves. Gays are still going to have to articulate and press our own concerns. I'm not going to "assume" that President Obama (or any other politician) is going to have my concerns and interests as his top priorities. They never have and never will.

FREELEO

nicholas, you say that, "now the white house has cover," you are basically calling mr davie a token. this president has gone out of his way to be inclusive to all types of (qualified) people. why do you think suddenly he's resorting to tokenism? we have no reason at this time to believe that mr davie will not dispense his duties in an above board and transparent manner. i wish mr davie the best in his new position.

Corey

Oh and Rod thanks for posting. I have my doubts about continuing Bush's faith initiatives but will agree this is a step in teh right direction.

As always, impressed you find news for the black gay community and get us involved in politics.

Irvine, CA

Government and politics should not mix. I thought that was the lesson of the Bush years. I want religion out of government! That's why we are having so many anti-gay laws passed.

But I will admit Obama is more trustworthy administering this program than Bush. I'm accepting it reluctantly.

And good luck to this Fred Davie. Hopefully he will actually have some input. That remains to be seen.

FREELEO

corey, the fact that you think that running the united states of america, "isn't very difficult" is, well, you may want to rethink that position. even with a staff of hundreds we've seen running the country isn't easy (8 years of hell and stupidity) and monitoring blogs isn't new but the fact that he even cares to do something about our concerns is very new.

i'm sure that many of your concerns such as the economy, housing, and jobs are at the top of the president's priority list. i'm also sure that we will see the inclusion of lgbt people in more hate crime bills under this administration then in prior ones, but we are more then gay and we as a nation are in serious trouble.

sgl people are not giving this president a free pass. some of us are trying to give the man a chance. he hasn't even been in office a month.

gurlene

The only thing we can and should do is wish him luck. His credentials are impressive.

seahawk

Glad to see you posting on Saturdays, homie.
Stay well.

Anderson

i for one applaud this appointment. i am not the biggest fan of these faith based initiatives but will give fred davie a chance, as i am giving the obama administration a chance and have high hopes.

let me also agree with gurlene. this man has very impressive credentials.

Stephaun Clipper Wallace

I am pleased with this news, and I agree fundamentally with Coreys' remarks in the comments section of this entry. Regardless of who is in office, I believe that we should be advocating for ourselves, even if that individual was a black gay man as well. I guess the difference for me is that having an ally in office means that we may not have to advocate to the same degree.....

Just my thoughts.

Danny Rivera

I'm not very pleased with the idea of government funded faith initiatives that allow churches to discriminate against gays...like the AIDS "prevention" that some black churches do that targets women and children. Gay men are encouraged to "change" and homosexuals are "love dfor the sinner not the sin" etc etc

But as some others mentioned (Irvine) I am very hopeful Obama will administer this program better than Bush. So he and Fred Davie have my utmost support and respect.

I'm not saying for a minute the discrimination is going to stop. It will not because they do not have to, the executive order strands. But perhaps the religious groups will be less public about it and some may try to do things differently on their own. What I do think will happen is that perhaps more LGBT inclusive religious groups will come to the table.

William Doan

Obama announced that his faith-based program would have to comply with anti-discrimination rules, including no discrimination against LGBT people. I expect him to deal with any previous executive order that contradicts his new policy. Of course, Republicans in congress could certainly try to make an issue of the infamous "religious exceptions." I doubt they would succeed, but the debate will certainly be vicious, if it takes place.
NOT true. The White House and the President did NOT say this. Religious groups are allowed the discriminate under the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Moreover, there is NO federal law that outlaws "discrimination against LGBT people." What law is that? This would be front page news and everyone would report it. -RM

Corey

William, that is an outright lie and you know nothing of the law.

There are no federal protections for discrimination against "LGBT" citizens, so how could the president or anyone demand this program comply with rules that don't exist?

And the "religious exceptions" are mandated by federal law. You can't undo an act of congress by executive order. The problem isn't the religious exceptions exist, it's the fact that churches are given government money and are allowed to discriminate against gays by executive order. Sadly this order was not repealed.

I'm as big an Obama fan as others on this blog but it's very disingenuous to pretend Obama made some groundbreaking and earth shattering policy toward LGBTs. If he did it would be all over the news and the blogs. What happened was Obama appointed a black gay man to the council overseeing this office. But the churches receiving funds are still legally able to discriminate against gays or others whose "lifetsyle" their churches disapproves.

Shameful.

libhomo

Appointing someone queer won't change the fact that the vast majority of the money will go to subsidizing viciously homophobic churches.

FREELEO

FAITH=the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

I have faith that things are getting better. I have faith that this appointment is another step toward reducing discrimination based on ones sexual orientation. I have faith that President Obama made this appointment so that those in the religious community would have to look in the face of a black sgl person, who reports to the president on the effectiveness of those faith based programs. I also have faith that if these programs discriminate and are ineffective, that they will be eliminated. I have faith that this president wants what's best for our community.

Some of you could use a little more faith.

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