Thursday, August 18, 2011

Lambda Legal's Kevin Cathcart
Backs Medal of Freedom for Kameny

The campaign to persuade President Obama to bestow the Medal of Freedom on gay movement pioneer Frank Kameny picked up an important endorsement today.

Kevin Cathcart (pictured), the longtime executive director Lambda Legal, after a few emails and voice mails from me, added his voice to the chorus of gay folks who agree Frank has earned this honor. Here is what Kevin had to say this afternoon:

When Frank Kameny first stood up for his rights in the late 1950’s, he stood up for all of us, and the fight that he helped to ignite more than fifty years ago is still our fight today. 

There has been so much progress toward LGBT equality since then, it is sometimes hard to imagine the courage and vision it took to do what he did: he spoke up, organized, took to the streets and also took his challenge to the Supreme Court. 

At Lambda Legal, we know what it takes to fight discrimination in the courts, and we honor his legacy. Those of us in the LGBT rights movement owe him a great deal of gratitude and respect – and the country owes him that, as well, for insisting that we live up to our ideals as a nation. 

I urge the president to award Dr. Kameny the Medal of Freedom – he stood up for freedom for us all.

Thanks, Kevin, for this statement. We're going to need lots of voices and pressure to make this campaign a success, and it's my sincere hope that Kevin is the first of many executive directors at major gay institutions to embrace the campaign on Frank's behalf.

(Top photo courtesy of Lambda Legal; bottom photo credit: DC Virago.)

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