Barack Obama | Gay Pride | Gay Rights | News | Stonewall

White House Confirms Monday LGBT Stonewall 'Celebration'

Following reports that surfaced over the weekend, the White House has confirmed that Obama has invited high-profile LGBT "families, volunteers and activists, and community leaders" to a "celebration" on Monday in honor of the Stonewall anniversary:

Whitehouse "The White House has not publicized the reception, and officials did not respond to e-mail requests for comment. But gay leaders from here and around the country said they had received either telephone calls from the White House or written invitations to the event, and were told Mr. Obama is expected to speak. Some said it would take more than a reception to change their view that Mr. Obama has not been aggressive enough in pursuing gay rights. ... Whether Mr. Obama will address the complaints at Monday’s reception is unclear. One person who received the invitation said the White House was billing the event as a celebration, akin to the festive affairs the administration holds on St. Patrick’s Day or Cinco de Mayo. Another said the invitation included an offer to bring a guest. 'They want people to understand that their partners are welcome,' said this person, speaking anonymously because the White House has not announced the event."

Meanwhile, today the White House held a conference call at 2 pm EDT today to discuss the situation regarding Thursday's DNC fundraiser and the anger that has erupted around it, Americablog reports:

"We had a report that one of the caucus members asked the White House Deputy Chief of staff and political director: 'What are we going to do about the blogs?'"

Another person on the call reported it as "a waste of time."

And clearly they have more than the blogs to be concerned about.

Dadt The Servicemembers Legal Defense Network announced today that they would have protesters outside the fundraiser. Writes executive director Aubrey Sarvis:

"SLDN will be outside boycotting the Democratic National Committee (DNC) LGBT event in Washington this Thursday. SLDN will be calling upon the President to end his silence on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." We will be wearing and handing out buttons with the number 265, representing the number of service members who will have been discharged this week since President Obama was sworn in. We do not, nor would we want to, dictate how members of our board or our Military Advisory Council make their political views known. However, I understand that two board members are attending the DNC event. I also understand they will be making their own spirited and creative statements once inside the room."

And for the record, the National Black Justice Coalition has dropped out of the fundraiser as well.

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  1. Another "token press opportunity" to show Obama cares about gay rights....

    Posted by: alan brickman | Jun 22, 2009 8:16:57 PM

  2. Needless to say the event is taking place in the White House's largest closet

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Jun 22, 2009 8:24:35 PM

  3. Very glad to see the President is going to recognize Stonewall 40 -- whether the discontent pushed him into doing so or not.

    Posted by: ReggieH | Jun 22, 2009 8:47:12 PM

  4. The people who attend this event (if any dare to do so) can only be leaders if we are willing to follow.

    I won't follow anyone who goes, and I'll withhold support from any organization that's represented.

    Andy, you and a handful of fellow bloggers have done more in the last week than many of our brick-and-mortar leaders have done in the last decade. You are the leaders we should be following.

    Posted by: Trev | Jun 22, 2009 9:01:29 PM

  5. Empty words and cocktails. Stop depriving us of our rights instead.

    Posted by: Cleveland Bob | Jun 22, 2009 9:18:57 PM

  6. Andy did you get your invite? Did Pam? Did Micheal? Did jihn> I didn't get mine either. They must be all lost in the mail together.

    Posted by: Wolfie | Jun 22, 2009 9:21:34 PM

  7. Maybe we should start our own political party- the FOP. The Fabulous Old Party. Of course when I say old I don't mean that we are old or look old because we are after all, fabulous. lol

    Posted by: Kerry | Jun 22, 2009 9:21:36 PM

  8. Exactly, David E.---a big great celebration! As long as no one outside the LGBT community finds out about it. What a proud achievement.

    Alan B., you might even be reaching to assume that they'll allow press to attend.

    I wonder if it will be an open bar, or if they'll charge for drinks and send the money to the DNC? Or if it's a two drink max, so that no one gets tipsy and stops being polite.

    Posted by: Paul R | Jun 22, 2009 9:55:49 PM

  9. Guess what Trev, nobody needs your support.

    Your comments here and like minded comments would do great damage to the cause of gay rights if peopled listened to what you had to say and took it seriously... but they don't. HRC will deliver for us because they behave like grownups.

    Posted by: JimSur212 | Jun 22, 2009 10:17:14 PM

  10. Stonewall is not a holiday! Call it pride if you want a "celebration". Stonewall was about rights.

    Posted by: clint | Jun 22, 2009 10:27:32 PM

  11. Slick. Another photo op and having those attend whom the politicians actually think represent us....go forth and spread the word to your minions that we come in peace (wink, wink)!

    Posted by: NYSmike | Jun 22, 2009 10:49:26 PM

  12. Someone had the great idea that everyone attending this function should bring as their date a service member discharged because of DADT.

    Posted by: pablo | Jun 22, 2009 11:10:58 PM

  13. We need to keep our doors open to the white house but at the same time make sure that our expectations are well, well known by the obama administration and the dems in general! No more wait and see ....we demand action now!

    Posted by: steve | Jun 22, 2009 11:18:10 PM

  14. "They want people to understand that their partners are welcome so long as they don't call them their husband or their wife."

    Still unimpressed, Mr. President.

    Posted by: peterparker | Jun 22, 2009 11:18:36 PM

  15. @PABLO

    "Someone had the great idea that everyone attending this function should bring as their date a service member discharged because of DADT."

    Well Pablo, that person is an idiot. Shove it in their faces.... that's a real smart way to build alliances and influence people.

    I agree with the person who said even trying to do something about the blogs would be a "waste of time." Don't you see how your comments here are marginalizing yourselves and making fools of our community? I'm glad we have HRC because Americablog would set us back decades, Pathetic rants....

    Posted by: JimSur212 | Jun 22, 2009 11:36:59 PM

  16. Everyone should go and while POTUS speaks, just make out.

    Posted by: David | Jun 22, 2009 11:38:31 PM

  17. Fraudbama gives symbolism, not substance. Boycott the DNC and the Obama money machine.

    Posted by: Alex M. | Jun 23, 2009 12:16:17 AM

  18. hmm-just testing- my comment was rejected?
    I didn't use any bad words or nothin!

    Posted by: One Butch | Jun 23, 2009 12:41:39 AM

  19. A "celebration" of Stonewall hosted by a president who is opposed to same-sex equality??? A "celebration" of Stonewall hosted by a President whose administration discharged hundreds of gays and lesbians since elected, whose DOJ defends our legal status as comparable to pedophiles and incestuous predators, who PROUDLY presents some federal employees with unequal, discriminatory sub-human employee partner benefits?
    What SORT of celebration? Will there be violent commemorative rioting? Will there be "celebrations" of any other historically important violent domestic riots? Should attendees bring their own incendiary devices, or will they be available at the bar?

    Posted by: One Butch | Jun 23, 2009 12:45:05 AM

  20. OK- thank you for posting my comment.
    P.S. Good Job Aubrey Sarvis and the SLDN for protesting. Kick ass!

    Posted by: One Butch | Jun 23, 2009 12:50:32 AM

  21. Hey JIMSUR212...why don't you go back to your Log Cabin Republican meeting and leave the rest of us alone.

    Posted by: peterparker | Jun 23, 2009 1:05:28 AM

  22. More & more people know that blog are good for every one where we get lots of information any topics !!!

    Posted by: Penis Size | Jun 23, 2009 2:10:44 AM

  23. "Well Pablo, that person is an idiot. Shove it in their faces.... that's a real smart way to build alliances and influence people."

    Let's remember this sudden "party" wouldn't even be happening if the atmosphere of protest that's been building in the GLBT community wasn't getting results. The administration could-- and assuredly would have-- announced this long in advance if it were simply part of Pride month. Instead, they suddenly announce this party a week or so in advance? Right... so if the GLBT community is simply "making fools of themselves" by beginning to forcefully protest the way they've been treated with the DOMA brief, the lack of real action on DADT, the stalling of ENDA, etc., then why is the administration suddenly calling for these meetings this week and, now, this party? Gee whiz, there's been more attempts to reach out to the community in the last two weeks than there has been for five months. I wonder why that is? And that's at the very FIRST signs that the GLBT community might not be so forthcoming with cash and donations. If this is "making fools of ourselves," maybe we all need to buy more clown makeup.

    BTW, I offer a challenge to name one other minority that has achieved major civil rights advances simply through mere politeness, subtle alliances, and "influencing people." For example, I'm curious, would you argue that the civil rights movement of the 1960s should have avoided the protests and controversy they initiated throughout that decade? After all, they, too, had an ally in the White House (actually at least two allies, two presidents). Should they have simply relied on their leaders to politely work through fund-raising organizations, maybe attend a cocktail party with JFK and LBJ or two? Avoided being too loud, making waves, or ticking off the population at large since they might "make fools of themselves?"

    Don't you kind of wonder why they didn't go that route?

    Posted by: bobbyjoe | Jun 23, 2009 2:19:44 AM

  24. Towleroad, Americablog and the other blogs are making a real difference. This is where to get a real pulse of what's going on.
    HRC is a waste of money.

    Jimsur212 is a speedbump on the road to equality.

    Posted by: Jeffrey | Jun 23, 2009 2:42:01 AM


    President Bush, nor McCain, would have allowed this type of reception to take place in your wildest dreams. I wouldn't pass this event up - Why wouldn't you want to be in a place where you can catch the president's ear and speak with him about the issues? Good God people, if you stomp your feet even when a baby olive branch is offered, they won't care enough to work for our rights.


    Posted by: KFLO | Jun 23, 2009 2:45:43 AM

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