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04/19/2007


Towleroad Guide to the Tube #552: National Equality March Speeches

I didn't get a chance to post these over the weekend. Eight speakers from the National Equality March: Cleve Jones, Cynthia Nixon, Judy Shepard, Lieutenant Dan Choi:

Lance Black, Lady Gaga, and Julian Bond, AFTER THE JUMP...

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NAACP Chair Julian Bond: Gay Rights are Civil Rights

Bond

The Human Rights Campaign posted National NAACP Chairman Julian Bond's speech from their fundraising dinner in Los Angeles over the weekend. It's quite powerful.

Said Bond: "When someone asks me, 'are gay rights civil rights?' my answer is always, 'Of course, they are.' Civil rights are positive legal prerogatives: the right to equal treatment before the law. These are the rights shared by everyone. There is no one in the United States who does not, or should not, enjoy or share in enjoying these rights. Gay and lesbian rights are not special rights in any way. It isn’t 'special' to be free from discrimination. It is an ordinary, universal entitlement of citizenship."

You may recall that the NAACP sent out a statement in February in support of the California legislature's challenge to Proposition 8.

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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NAACP Supports Challenge to Prop 8, Calls for Court to Overturn It

The NAACP yesterday sent out a press statement expressing its opposition to Proposition 8 and voicing its support of the California legislature's challenge:

Jealous "In a letter to legislative leaders, NAACP national board chair Julian Bond and President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous urged passage of House Resolution 5 and Senate Resolution 7 to put the legislature on record calling for invalidation of Prop. 8 as an improper and dangerous alteration of the California Constitution. SR 7, sponsored by Equality California (EQCA), will be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee on Feb. 24th and will proceed to the full Senate for a vote shortly thereafter. Its companion bill, HR 5, also sponsored by EQCA, passed the Assembly Judiciary Committee on Feb. 17th and is eligible for a vote before the full Assembly as early as today."

Said Jealous: "The NAACP's mission is to help create a society where all Americans have equal protection and opportunity under the law. Our Mission Statement calls for the 'equality of rights of all persons.' Prop. 8 strips same-sex couples of a fundamental freedom, as defined by the California State Supreme Court. In so doing, it poses a serious threat to all Americans. Prop. 8 is a discriminatory, unprecedented change to the California Constitution that, if allowed to stand, would undermine the very purpose of a constitution and courts - assuring equal protection and opportunity for all and safeguarding minorities from the tyranny of the majority."

The California State Conference of the NAACP filed briefs with the California Supreme Court, "arguing that the measure drastically alters the equal protection guarantee in California's Constitution and that the rights of a minority cannot be eliminated by a simple majority vote."

The Court will hear arguments on March 5 and has six months to rule on the matter.

Watch a pre-election interview of NAACP national board chair Julian Bond by Washington Post editorial board member Jonathan Capehart, AFTER THE JUMP...

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