Obama to Gay Rights Protesters: You Don’t Have To Holler

President Barack Obama chastised liberal protesters who interrupted his speech this week in support of Senator Barbara Boxer by asking why they think they need to holler to be heard. In the meantime, back in Washington, the White House was clearing Lafayette Park of media who were unable to hear protesters who handcuffed themselves to the fence. They apparently needed to holler but it did little good.

At the rally, Obama was confronted by the fact that he has yet to do away with the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. Obama was mystified (around 2:10 on the video): “When you got an ally like Barbara Boxer and you’ve got an ally like me who are standing for the same thing, then you don’t know exactly why you have to holler because we already hear you.” He might want to review this video from back home in Washington:

12 thoughts on “Obama to Gay Rights Protesters: You Don’t Have To Holler”

  1. Michael P Bryne,

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I understand those who are upset with President Obama for continuation of Bush-era attacks on civil liberties (I think that Mike is exactly right in that President Obama cares about programs, not policies) but to abandon the president because he is moving too slowly (while trying to act on a large number of issues in the most toxic political environment since the civil war) is just short-sighted and stupid.

    Lady Liberty,

    While I am a strong advocate of gay right, I realize that (not being gay myself) I lack the urgency that you feel and the issue isn’t a personal one to me but I really feel like you (and many in the gay community) are cutting off your nose to spite your face. President Obama has started the process to end DADT and suspended the prosecution of anyone ‘outed’ against their will. True, this doesn’t help people like Lt. Dan Choi who outed themselves (I personally consider Lt. Choi an American hero) but it has stopped the majority of DADT discharges in their tracks in a way consistent with the spirt of the law (which is important for political reasons). Continue to speak out against this unjust policy (FDR told us that we need to force the president to do what he wants to do sometimes), vote against him for re-election if he hasn’t ended DADT by then (I may well join you), but to abandon him for a party with very vocal members that would like you jailed or even killed and would certainly like to see an outright ban on gays in the military because he’s moving too slowly in the direction you want him to go seems… I don’t even have a word for it.

    To everyone who’s jumped ship on President Obama since the election, I would like to ask you a question: in what way would we be better off if it were President McCain in office right now? (or, god forbid, President Palin) I certainly agree with complaints about a lack of prosecution of war crimes, but in terms of what president has gotten the most done in their first year plus in office, there are only two names on the list: Barack Obama and Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

  2. Hey
    well this the ugly truth of politics…things move in inches rather than feet…you have to stick to your guns on this issue and let the President and the Democrats know how you feel… I disagree with the President on his marriage views, it is just plain wrong…but you will definitely not get your equality by following the Republicans…there are just to many nut jobs over there dictating moral policy…I guess if that is an argument for the lesser of two evils so be it…the hype from their party about individual rights is just that HYPE…if you don’t fit into the mold forget about your rights with the republicans…workers rights, health care rights , spousal rights, clean air rights, protection of your investments rights, on every issue it is all about unbridled greed and that it is it….I for one am completely sick of em and their Conservative Democratic friends…My money for right now is on President Obama cause with his leadership we have a chance to change the dynamic of the conversation and get past this bullshit “Hell No ” way of doing things. You have to remember that this the result of 40 years of failed policy that the President has to try to weed his way thru…it is going to be a tough road to bulldoze…We are just at the beginning of a tunnel with actual light on then other side ….keep on driving…Michael P

  3. The President’s inaction on issues such as this began to make much more sense to me after Prof. Turley explained how President Obama is a man who is primarily concerned with programs, not principles.

    This is exactly why the war criminals from the previous administration were not prosecuted – it wasn’t a program that would help people, so he didn’t consider it important.

    I hope he comes to realize that ELIMINATING programs that cause a group to be disadvantaged (such as DADT) is just as important as instituting programs that help the disadvantaged.

  4. Barry, they did indeed have to shout. You’ve got lobbyists in your ears. You know. The same infection that’s kept you from slapping that traitor Cheney in cuffs.

  5. Michael P Byrne,

    I agree with you, there is a time in the cycle of events when things look like absolute drecht. How long has the Democratic party been in control? How long does it take to reverse years of abuses? To change a bill? Enact a law?
    There are a lot of tiers to filter through.
    I still have some faith in the system, as distressing as some of this looks….

  6. Thank you, Prof. Turley, for bringing attention to this issue.
    Michael P.- I am a lesbian and I am disgusted by the Democrats treatment of their gay “constituents.” For one, they really don’t like us that much (Denying gay marriage was one of the few moments of agreement at the Palin/Biden debate). Second, although the Republicans don’t really like us either, at least they are honest about it. So, since I’m not really looking forward to real equality in the near future, I might as well go with the party of individual rights. If I’m not treated as an equal, I’d like the right to be left alone and to enjoy the fruits of my labor. Long live the individual!

  7. Man you guys are really smoking some strong stuff…the only thing separating us from a complete right wing take over is what is left of the Democratic base…you really show your ignorance in politics when you go to an event and you shout down the best possible chance you have in getting this ridiculous policy overturned. Get out into the streets at republican rallies and stand up for your cause. I will say I was distressed at the footage yesterday where security at the White House kept back the reporters who were trying to cover this issue. Still The President is not your problem, these things take time to work their way up through the system, layers and layers of entrenched bureaucracy . I swear if you claim this as your fight instead of making sure Democrats or Liberal Candidates get elected in the fall we will go so far back wards, this will all look like a complete luxury. “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” will get repealed. But you got to use this energy to keep your friends in office to hold the line..It is getting ugly out there, do not lose sight of a more tolerant America. Do not let the Republicans own this or any issue, we have to much to lose…Thank you Michael P

  8. he’s out of touch. that’s what happens when you listen to HRC president, Joe Solmonese who does not care about his own organization’s purpose.

  9. Blouise,

    He’s already done that. For instance, excluding his former doctor, a single-payer advocate, from health care debates.

  10. I guess President Obama has failed to grasp the reality that many of his former supporters don’t think he’s done a very good job.

    The man claimed he wouldn’t get hung up inside the beltway thus losing track of the voices across the country, but his mystification concerning the frustrations felt by gays indicates he’s failed at remaining “in touch”.

    He may be able to corall the media in front of the White House but he is beginning to see that it ain’t so outside D.C. Liberals don’t “corall” all that easily.

    It doesn’t hurt to prick the bubble around him every once in a while.

    Let’s wait and see if he takes the route “W” took … only approved supporters allowed to attend townhalls and rallies.

  11. Does the left hand know what the right hand is donning?

    donned, don·ning, dons
    2. To assume or take on.

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