Friday, September 07, 2012

HRC Still Sucks:
Embracing David Koch for Gay Marriage

The relatively new president of the Human Rights Campaign is Chad Griffin and his hiring raised hopes for a new day at the group, but an HRC blog post last week shows that some fundamental problems still exist, and are reason why I remain critical of the group:

Support from prominent influencers like [arch conservative David] Koch, [pictured,] and Paul Singer indicates that the growing momentum for LGBT equality nationwide is certainly present with the Republican Party. Last week, we talked about how the anti-LGBT tone of the platform – and Mitt Romney’s positions on equality – would one day soon be unconscionable for any political figure with national ambitions to espouse. David Koch’s support for marriage equality is a powerful reminder of why that day is not far off.

I can understand HRC embracing Koch's gay marriage stand and that's not to say I agree with their embrace, but to omit mention of all the dangerous items on his political agenda that would or do threaten LGBT Americans is illustrative of the same old shit at HRC. Not one damn word about Koch's endangerment to our democracy. To paraphrase Lillian Hellman, there is no conscience at HRC to cut to suit this year's political fashions.

Let's get up to speed on Koch's agenda beyond gay marriage with details from The Nation, and bear in mind that thousands of LGBT seniors and disabled persons would be impacted if he gets his way on America's safety net, and he funds that suppress the minority vote which includes LGBTs of color:

Take Social Security, which the Koch Brother are working to dismantle by funding an echo chamber of think tanks. Brave New Foundation researchers reveal a $28.4 million Koch effort that has manufactured 297 opinions and commentaries, 200 reports, 56 studies and six books distorting Social Security’s effectiveness and purpose.

“The Koch Brothers are funding think tanks spreading an enormous amount of disinformation about Social Security,” Senator Bernie Sanders says in the film ["Koch Brothers Exposed"].

Koch-backed groups are also pushing onerous voter ID requirements on minorities and the poor. They have funded efforts to potentially thwart 21 million Americans from voting by writing and proposing voting suppression bills in thirty-eight states.

“The Koch Brothers support laws that are the most aggressive attempt to roll back voting rights in this country that we’ve seen in over a century,” says Benjamin Jealous, president and CEO of the NAACP.

There is a new boss at HRC, but it's still same elitist, narrow-focused organization with tunnel vision that will do nothing to challenge the 1%.


Andy Humm said...

Even if you give two shits about LGBT rights, you should be alarmed by Koch and Singer because the bulk of their money goes to electing anti-gay Republicans who vote against our rights--none of it to pro-gay Democrats. HRC and BGLTF and Freedom to Marry are in bed with the devil. The only way to justify their taking this blood money would be if they did it while BLASTING these donors for what they are doing over all to LGBT rights and what they are doing to destroy the middle class in America.

Greg Gardner said...

Michael, thank you for your comments and insights. I have long been concerned about HRC's seemingly poor practices concerning and treatment of "regular" people and those LGBT persons on the margins. Do you know of other critics, including scholars, who speak well to these concerns? Equality is certainly a poor and inaccurate word to describe the narrow vision and practices of this elitist organization and its leadership. Thanks again.

Greg Gardner said...

Thought you mind find this helpful and of interest. It speaks to issues of LGBT poverty, particularly those of the Elderly. There seems to be good research and scholarship employed.