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HRC Apologizes for Mistreatment of Trans Activists and Undocumented Queer Immigrants at SCOTUS Marriage Arguments: VIDEO


The Human Rights Campaign today posted an apology for its mistreatment of trans activists and undocumented queer immigrants during last week's Supreme Court marriage hearings.

Writes HRC's Fred Sainz, Vice President, Communications and Marketing:

In the midst of a tremendously historic week for our community, two unfortunate incidents at the United for Marriage event at the Supreme Court last week have caused pain in the community.  In one case, a trans activist was asked to remove the trans pride flag from behind the podium, and in another, a queer undocumented speaker was asked to remove reference to his immigration status in his remarks.

HRC joined in a coalition statement on Friday apologizing for these incidents and the individuals involved have personally offered their apologies to those affected.  But to be perfectly clear, HRC regrets the incidents and offers our apologies to those who were hurt by our actions.  We failed to live up to the high standard to which we hold ourselves accountable and we will strive to do better in the future.  Through both our legislative and programmatic work, HRC remains committed to making transgender equality a reality.

HRC's statement, which follows apologies from the United for Marriage Coalition (HERE) and a statement from GetEQUAL (HERE) comes after reports of the two incidents surfaced on the internet. The blog Transition Transition demanded an apology for the flag removal incident, and the Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project (QUIP) posted a video asking for one as well.

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. uhm, "Dana"? Harvey Milk was a coward who LOVED encouraging people to come out of the closet NO MATTER WHAT, irrespective of any real harm to themselves...but of course Milk himself was closeted from his own parents.

    eventually the wider Queer community reached a consensus that Queer youth must be taught to NOT put themselves in danger of abuse or homelessness. that happened around 1990 or so...i'm 40 now n recall well the "come out no matter what!" advice to queer youth like myself in the 80's.

    how many young Queers fell victim to homelessness, AIDS, prostitution and violence because some self-hating wanna-be revolutionaries like Milk were cavalier about putting some at risk and trying to cut others out of the community entirely?!

    enough with the canonization of that Holy Fool. dead chicken hawk...the neocon variety, not the pedokind.

    Posted by: Jeton Ademaj | Apr 1, 2013 9:12:09 PM

  2. I'm sorry, I didn't realize that illegal immigration issues had anything to do with same-sex marriage? How dare they keep the demonstrations focused!

    Posted by: Eric | Apr 1, 2013 9:34:58 PM

  3. American admits more immigrants legally than all of received Europe combined. Our immigration system is not broken, 12 million illegal aliens are breaking them.

    Posted by: David Hearne | Apr 1, 2013 10:01:03 PM

  4. salmon rios, it's a turn of phrase. but it's also true--our love is literally OUTLAWED, so to speak--as in discriminated against at the federal level, and in most states.

    we're a community because we face the same oppression. i see it as a potentially powerful positive thing for us unite on. not sure why how our community is based "on a negative."

    Posted by: redball | Apr 1, 2013 10:09:11 PM

  5. Throwing immigrants and trans under the bus very deliberately. Just when I thought that the HRC has changed. It's no enough the damage is done. Go screw thyself.

    Posted by: chris255 | Apr 1, 2013 10:23:19 PM

  6. Deport illegals and their marriage issues go with them.

    Posted by: David Hearne | Apr 1, 2013 11:00:08 PM

  7. redball,

    it's a negative because it is based on opposing something. there are lots of groups fighting oppression and that's great. but you can't base an identity on what you oppose. LGBs are together as a true community not because we all oppose a law or a politician but because we all have a shared trait which forms a big part of our lives.

    anyway, if discrimination "outlaws" us the answer is to end discrimination not to adopt an identity of outlaw. we have made alot of progress and we will keep on making progress. gay kids dont need to be told that their identity is one of gender outlaw or queer. they should be told the truth, which is that we are winning, that their lives will be the best of any generation of gay people and that they can grow up to be anything they want to be, a full part of their community, not an outlaw or outsider.

    Posted by: salmon rios | Apr 2, 2013 1:35:57 AM

  8. Wow. Looks like TR's resident troll's DID is really flaring up!

    And as far as political strategy is concerned, would you consider Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to be one who was well-versed in political strategy, Rick/Dana/DB/Wilberforce?

    Or, did you miss that bit of his about injustice anywhere being injustice everywhere?

    I am a gay, Caucasian, cis-gendered American male, but I have more fight in me than just what it takes to fight for gay issues. The injustices heaped upon women, trans* individuals, undocumented immigrants and people of all ethnicities will face opposition from me.

    Community means something more to me than just "people like myself."

    Posted by: FFS | Apr 2, 2013 3:56:09 AM

  9. I'm sadden to see the ignorance that exists within our community which has been highlighted in the comment section of this story. The freedom to marriage is ABSOLUTELY a Trans and Immigrant issue. Many Trans people are still identified by their biological sex and DOMA prevents Immigrants from citizenship. As someone who has actually worked on marriage equality, please educate yourself on these issues before you spout off about them 'hijacking' the marriage movement. HRC, obviously the most well known LGBT organization, needs to systematically improve on Trans and Immigrant issues but as do most LGBT organizations in this town. We as a community need to work on being more inclusive, not just HRC.

    Posted by: Peanut | Apr 2, 2013 10:19:36 AM

  10. It's truly sickening that so may gay men would gleefully accept equal rights at the expense of the transgender community.

    HRC has a long history of trying to exclude trans people from the march towards equality. They were ready to take trans people out of the ENDA bill to ensure it passed Congress. Unforgivable.

    This latest stunt is not surprising; HRC only truly cares about the white gay men that funds it. That's hard to write, and hard to say, but it's the truth.

    Posted by: Isaiah | Apr 2, 2013 11:21:09 AM

  11. I hate trans people and everything they do.

    Posted by: Bill Perdue | Apr 2, 2013 11:38:42 AM

  12. Another brilliant move by the Human Rights Champagne fundraiser. Sometimes they truly are no better than the Log Cabin Repubs.

    Posted by: Adam | Apr 2, 2013 12:06:00 PM

  13. Most of the negative comments are made by one or two posters. It's sad that trolls are allowed to destroy the quality of comments here so often.

    Posted by: Francis | Apr 2, 2013 12:20:51 PM

  14. salmon rios,

    you don't get queer studies. not my fault. and i'm not sure why you're interested in teaching "gay kids" that they are gender outlaws. that wasn't even remotely my point.

    Posted by: redball | Apr 2, 2013 1:11:46 PM

  15. A few things i noticed: 1) Trans kept ENDA from passing - the reality is, the law would not have passed and GWB stated he would have vetoed it if it had. ANY person with an ounce of political savvy would make that the time to press HARD for the whole thing. Get people educated and the ball rolling on full employment protections. (2) Trans people are able to marry - Not in all states and not for all trans people. The patchwork is actually more complicated than the current state of SSM. It varies on who they marry, in what state, and if they move does the new state recognize either the marriage or the gender change. In short, any marriage a trans person has could be considered SSM. (3) Gay men are some self-centered jerks. And I say this as a gay man. Seriously, you guys stink on ice.

    Posted by: Quinn | Apr 2, 2013 2:45:26 PM

  16. I think a few people have this wrong. The main focus for trans-people is not marriage equality... so if this was an event (sorry I'm ignorant on the context) then okay trans-related topics weren't really needed there.

    The main focus for trans-people is support. They want to be taken seriously and given the resources they need to be themselves. They want to not be discriminated against in the work place and not be at risk at losing their job just because they're trans.
    People wonder why so many trans-folk are sex workers; it's because it's so damn hard to get a job if you're trans and can be so vulnerable in the workplace.

    Some argue that trans-people shouldn't be in the LGBT community, well in my opinion as a gay teen I strongly think they should. We all want equality and we all want to end ignorance and discrimination against us. How do we get it? We work together in harmony or no one will take us seriously; because if we reject each other then they will reject us all.

    Thank you for reading.

    Posted by: Orion | Jun 1, 2013 1:14:17 PM

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