Obama’s Gay Rights Policies

Okay, I know what you’re thinking.  That I’m going to be all over praising Obama and his initiatives on equal rights for gays.  I am a liberal, right?  Well, his recent demand that hospitals treat gay partners as family members is such a bunch of shit and I’ll tell you why.  If any of my gay friends out there have anything to add to this discussion, I highly encourage you to make comments as well.

On the surface, it sounds like a great idea.  Obama now says that gay partners should have the same rights as married spouses and family members at the hospital when critical decisions need to be made.  This means that when someone is rushed to the emergency room, their partner can see them right away, or find out their status from a doctor, or even help make life or death decisions if their partner can’t make them for themselves.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/16/us/politics/16webhosp.html

These are the kinds of things immediate family and spouses already have the right to do.  What Obama has done is mere gesturing.  He’s put a band aid on the bleeding wound instead of treating the injury.  Gays don’t want special treatment at the hospitals or anywhere else.  What they want is equal treatment.  What that means it that they want the right to marry their spouses in the first place, thereby alleviating the special exception for them at the hospitals in the first place.

Some of you may not understand the difference.  Or, some people you debate with over gay rights may not fully grasp the major difference between “marriage” and “civil union.”  Let me explain, however simplified it may be.  Have you ever filled out an application for anything?  A doctors office form?  A census?  A credit card application?  A mortgage application?  A W-4 or I-9?  A 401K or pension beneficiary form?  If so, let me know how many times the option of “civilly unionized” was a choice when you listed your spouse.  Sure, you cane be “Married, Single, Divorced, Widowed…,” but never “Partnered!”

That’s just the tip of the iceberg of the bias against gays.  Obama mandates that hospitals observe gays as valid partners.  BUT, only ones that receive federal monies for Medicare and Medicaid.  Private hospitals are still free to make their own policies.  And on top of that, the mandates put the responsibility of actually following the policy on the shoulders of staff members.  More often than not, regardless of the Federal Policy, hospital workers, among others, are told immediate family are to be admitted only.  They do not, and will not, recognize a “partner” as immediate family.  They sure as shit won’t let a “significant other” decide whether or not to keep someone on life support, donate their organs, or amputate rather than operate.

Obama should have gone further and outlawed the prevention of gays from being married.  It is sickening that we must live in an era where gays are considered “not one of us.”  He has still to repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy in the military, and that even gets the support of the Republican Right!!  With his latest ruling in hospitals, he is merely “allowing” homo-sexuals what should be their god-given “right.”

3 Responses to “Obama’s Gay Rights Policies”

  1. I am completely on board with what you are saying. It is a crock of shit. Its one of many spoken band aids that one politician or another puts forth in order to score brownie points. The fucked up part is its the gay supporters who end up feeling warm and fuzzy inside, and the gays that get screwed over and treated like second rate citizens yet again.

    Its pretty disgusting. But then again, there are a lot of things that need to be changed right now that i think are disgusting. health INSURANCE translating to HEALTH CARE being one of them. My only smile towards the government right now in the white house is that at least they are TALKING about some positive change, its a TEENY FRIGGIN TINY step. It only gets a half cockeyed sarcastic smile from me.

    whew. i need to get off my soap box. but yea. Keep blogging. I love the topics. I will have a food blog up soon, not nearly as interesting, but it should do wonders to your appetite. hehe

  2. Until this all gets worked out we all need to remember to designate a medical power of attorney. This gives us the legal right to decide who makes decisions regarding our medical care if we are unable to make decisions for ourselves. I have never witnessed such bias in hospitals, but I’m sure it can exist.
    These kinds of situations can happen with boyfriend/girlfriend partnerships too. Family dynamics..this person doesn’t like this person..this person is the better decision maker..these two family members don’t agree..all a bunch of crap in a stressful situation. This is why it is so important to designate a medical power of attorney.

  3. Nicholas Says:

    As a gay man I couldn’t agree more! It is pretty sad how free our society is not, no matter how much anyone claims. However, I guess at this point we (gay people) have been used to this, and will pretty much take what we can get, before they take it away (which a lot of states have done, in regards to equal marriage, etc). I still can’t grasp why people are so concerned with how other people live their lives. It’s all ridiculous.

    Great blog as always, Ryan!

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