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#makeinjusticevisible

I was looking around online for information about marital rape exceptions. I know that may sound odd, but I was thinking of writing an article about marriage equality as a follow up to a piece I wrote a few years ago about same sex marriage that caused a minor pile up on the information super highway. I wanted to know, just how equal are we in marriage?

Here’s what I found. There have beenĀ prohibitions against marital rape in all 50 U.S. states since 1993. That means that up until just 23 years ago, it was legal for a man …

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What LGBT America Can Learn From Asian American History

The growing number of states legalizing same-sex marriages has many in the LGBT community convinced that full assimilation is inevitable. But as an Asian American gay man, I’m unconvinced that assimilation for the whole LGBT community is inevitable or even possible, nor that simply being assimilated is even desirable.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I understand why some in the LGBT community are advocates of assimilation. I was shamed, bullied, and occasionally assaulted through a big chunk of my life, most of which was lived at a time when hatred of LGBT people was a sign of moral turpitude. There …

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Why for Some, SCOTUS Same Sex Marriage Ruling Just Doesn’t Feel Right

While most of LGBT America celebrates the legal defeat of the Defense of Marriage Act, some of us are finding this moment bittersweet. We recognize the decision is a real and meaningful victory, but we’re worried about what this victory means for those of us who wish to exercise the right not to marry, and about whether winning this right will diminish the transformational potential of the LGBT movement.

LGBT people have struggled for decades in the face of hate and exclusion to create new definitions of family, and community. Over those decades, we created intentional families as places to …

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Marriage Equality Is Step in a Much Longer Journey

The Supreme Court struck down Bill Clinton’s discriminatory and down right offensive Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Their decision was just, and it was a long time coming. The first words out of my mouth when I heard it was “about f**king time!” followed shortly by, “is it too early for cocktails?”

Moments like this come few and far between. But even as we celebrate, we ought not overlook the fact that DOMA fell in a week when the Supreme Court also effectively neutered the Voting Rights Act. So even as rights are expanding for same sex couples, one …

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Why I Support Same Sex Marriage as a Civil Right, But Not as a Strategy to Achieve Structural Change

The pending Supreme Court decisions concerning the constitutionality of California Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act have pushed discussion of same-sex marriage into the mainstream of the news cycle, with many civil rights advocates convinced that regardless of the court’s decision, eventual victory is a done deal. I don’t disagree. I’ve also argued in support of same sex marriage rights. However, I have some serious worries about the broad implications of this victory.

Why? First, the obvious. Marriage is a conservative institution. It licenses certain kinds of relationships and not others based on a template that reproduces a …

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A Case for Solidarity: Same Sex Marriage and the Fight for Civil Rights

The president’s support for LGBT rights, especially the oblique reference to marriage equality in his inaugural address got me thinking about the last time his “evolution” on the issue of LGBT rights got him talking about same sex marriage. On that other historic occasion, the right reacted as it always has, trying to draw a line around civil rights that excludes LGBT people.

RNC chair Reince Priebus summed things up for the opposition saying,

“I don’t think it’s a matter of civil rights. I think it’s just a matter of whether or not we’re going to adhere to something that’s …

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Red, Blue, Slave, Free

The maps above (originally from PolitiComments.com) were cut and pasted into this post from the new Changelab report, Left or Right of the Colorline? Asian Americans and the Racial Justice Movement. The first one describes the Red-Blue electoral breakdown in 2004, and the second indicates in tan and red those territories that were once open to slavery. The chilling correspondence between these two maps used to feel like our unchangeable political destiny.

Forget the political parties. Both sides have had their day as the party of white supremacy. What we should remember is that whichever side racially sensitive whites …

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President Obama – Not Ahead of the Curve

Today President Obama acted by directive to provide a 2 year “deferred action” on deportation of undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children. I’m overjoyed at the change. But am I grateful? Nope. I say it’s about time and, BTW, not enough.

No doubt the directive was prompted by the fact that the Republicans were about to announce a proposal via Marco Rubio meant to build support for the Republican Party among Latino voters.

I know that the Rubio proposal was just a political maneuver with no teeth. I’m not lauding Republicans. But never doubt …

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Obama Comes Out of the Closet

When President Obama came out of the closet with his support of same sex marriage (first stated as an Illinois State Senator in 1996), it was a bright spot in a difficult week for LGBT people. The cynical nature of his “evolution” on the issue got an eye roll out of me, but it also got a tear and a cheer.

Coming one day after the passage of North Carolina Amendment 1, Mr. Obama’s statement in support of same sex marriage, perhaps the most politically touchy subject affecting same sex couples, was a calculated political risk taken at a …