Wednesday, April 02, 2008

The Rally and What We Can Learn

The Associated Press is reporting that over 1,000 people showed up for the pro-Sally Kern rally. It doesnt' surprise me.

The first rally, held in opposition of her remarks, was a bit more spontaneous and featured mostly constituents who were concerned with how an elected official was demonizing them.

This recent one was no doubt more planned to the last detail - from the groups bussed in to the guest speakers, to the pro-Kern banner, to the press releases (that were probably written before the rally took place) and pictures that are now making their way through the blogsphere.
And I noticed that Kern just happened to make an appearance at this rally.

Other than on anti-gay industry webpages, this controversy seems to be on its last leg. But as Oklahoma slowly gets back to normal, let me leave you all with some final (I hope) thoughts on the matter.

Kern has damaged her effectiveness as a legislator. She now has an unfortunate stigma attached to her as "that legislator who said gays are worse than terrorists."

No matter how many rallies are staged for her benefit, that is what people are going to remember.

And it couldn't have happened to a more deserving person.

Now the BIG lesson we must all carry from this is - KNOW your legislators and make sure they know you.

This entire controversy began because Kern gave a speech saying things she claimed were backed up with facts.

As it turns out, her statements were not backed up with facts, but anecdotes and lies she gleaned from anti-gay industry studies and propaganda films.

So the question is just how many Sally Kerns exist in legislatures across the country? I don't mean people who have a belief that homosexuality is a sin.

I mean legislators who are not only plugged into the anti-gay industry's web of lies but are willing to pass them along as fact.

And are willing to pass legislation that will harm the well-being of lgbts.

All politics is local and no matter how much press the national fights over ENDA and hate crimes legislation gets, the real story is what's happening on a state-by-state basis.

In Florida, Ronda Storms is doing all she can to make sure that lgbts cannot adopt children,

In Utah, Chris Buttars tried to ban GSAs in public schools,

In Tennessee, Stacey Campfield tried to pass legislation to keep public schools from even mentioning lgbts.

It is imperative that we get to know our local elected officials because despite what is said, things like that DO matter.