Ga. leaders against the grain on gay rights

Add this share

imageJoshua Trey Barnett is the co-creator and editor of and the contributing blogger behind Dawg Days, a weekly update from Athens for Project Q Atlanta.

Tuesday brought sad news for the LGBT community, but we can’t let the California Supreme Court’s bad judgment get in the way of all that we’re fighting for.

Instead, we must focus our anger, sadness, and efforts towards more obtainable goals and productive work for the greater good. Our sights ought to be set on voting in more progressive, accepting voices to represent Georgia’s people.

We must remember that we’re ahead of the curve. We’re seeing now what others can’t yet imagine — a future where everyone is treated equally. Sure, it’s all cliché, but it’s the truth. The African-American Civil Rights Movement relied on this same simple truth in its successful bout for equality.

Right now, representatives and senators who think a federal hate crimes law is unconstitutional represent Georgians on the national level. And our own Rep. Paul Broun (R-Athens) says he will introduce a bill that would ban same-sex marriage on the federal level. If you’re like me, you don’t feel like these folks are representing your best interests.

The fact of the matter is this: Georgia’s leadership is against the grain on gay rights. They’ll do anything to stay away from the hot button issue, and if it comes their way, they pull out the Bible in defense of shunning an entire community.

So, how can Georgia, an overwhelmingly red state, conquer hate when the liberals in California say no to same-sex marriage? Well, first we have to keep our heads held high. Don’t let one disappointment get in the way of our overall success. Several states either allow of recognize same-sex unions now, and 2009 seems to be the year of progress up north.

In less than a year, we’ll be hearing all about the candidates who want to represent us. The year 2010 will be symbolic of how Georgians want to shape the future of their state. Stay with what we’ve got, and we’ll never see change. Take a chance on the new guy who says he’ll bring about positive change, and we may have a chance to make Georgia gay friendly, too.

The sole dissenting opinion in the Proposition 8 case, written by Justice Moreno, is a moving testament, an inspiring notion we must keep in mind as we try to move ahead with our lives:

Proposition 8 represents an unprecedented instance of a majority of voters altering the meaning of the equal protection clause by modifying the California Constitution to require deprivation of a fundamental right on the basis of a suspect classification. The majority’s holding is not just a defeat for same-sex couples, but for any minority group that seeks the protection of the equal protection clause of the California Constitution.

So, let’s take the disappointing decision with a grain of salt and keep on chugging along. A couple setbacks will seem worth the fight when we’re afforded all the rights and responsibilities of marriage and our people are seen in the same light as the majority.

Subscribe: We’ve got a weekly eblast.
Twitter: Oh, yeah. We tweet the news, too, so follow us.
Facebook: Become a fan of our page.
YouTube: Videos, too.


Project Q Atlanta goes on hiatus after 14 years

On Sept. 1, 2008, Project Q Atlanta promised a hyper-local “queer media diet” for Atlanta. The site set out to bring LGBTQ news, in-depth...

Photos catch Purple Dress Run invading Midtown

After three years of pandemic-inflicted limitations, Atlanta’s gay rugby squad let loose on one of its most popular events. The Atlanta Bucks Purple Dress...

Ooo Bearracuda: Photos from Bear Pride’s Main Event

The seventh annual Atlanta Bear Pride hit the ground running on Friday with packed houses at Woofs, Heretic and Future. Turned out, they hadn’t...

Atlanta Bear Pride set to go hard and long all weekend

That low, growing growl you hear is a nation of gay bears headed for Atlanta Bear Pride this weekend. By the time they arrive,...

PHOTOS: Armorettes bring back Easter Drag Race magic

Gay Atlanta’s queens of do-good drag brought the sunshine to a cloudy afternoon on Saturday when Heretic hosted the triumphant return of Armorettes Easter...