Leading from the Left

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Elizabeth Dole Sinks into the Mud

Jesse Helms would be proud of Elizabeth Dole's new attack ad against Kay Hagan. Entitled "Godless," the ad is, well, truthless. Dole ought to be ashamed of herself.

Check out CNN Campbell Brown's scathing editorial about this ad. I think she can be a bit over the top sometimes, but Brown hit this one out of the ballpark.

Friday, October 24, 2008

For All of Us Who Have Republican Relatives

If you have, as I do, Republican friends and relatives, this is a must see. Powerful stuff; well said and honest.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

GOP Abandons the Crazy Lady

The Republican Party, in a surprise move, has pulled its ads supporting the re-election of right-wing nut job, Rep. Michele Bachmann. Bachmann is the Minnesota Congresswoman who, last week, called Barack Obama's patriotism into question and suggested that newspapers should investigate 'anti-American' members of the House of Representatives.

Liberals and moderates from around the country were so appalled by her antics that they donated a total of $800,000 to her opponent within days. And now the powers-that-be in the Republican party are cutting and running. They're leaving Bachmann, who once was a shoo-in for re-election, swinging in the breeze. Read about it here.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Arrowood for Court of Appeals

Please support John Arrowood in his bid to retain his seat on the NC Court of Appeals. Judge Arrowood was appointed last year to fill a vacancy on the Court. By all accounts, he has been a stellar judge. He works hard, is thoughtful, solicits opinions from others and listens to what they have to say.

I've known John Arrowood for many years and know him to be a fair-minded gentleman with a fine intellect. If re-elected, he will serve the citizens of North Carolina well. I urge you to vote for Judge John Arrowood. You can learn more about John here.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

On Racism

My friend Catherine Devine sent the link to this youtube video. It's video of a speech given by a union guy talking about race, racism and Barack Obama. Very well done and worth a watch.

The Red State Mandate Obama Needs

Early voting begins today in NC. This is the most important election of our lifetimes; I think we all know that the stakes are high and whoever wins will have a mess on his hands. To strengthen his hand in straightening this country out, Barack Obama needs a big mandate from the American people.

I used to think it was important only that the Democrats win this year--and I didn't care even it were by a 1 vote victory in the Electoral College. I don't believe that anymore. I now believe Obama needs a Reagan-sized mandate from the people: significant pick ups in the Senate and House as well as winning a sizable majority of the electoral college votes.

Let's face it, the country's in a ditch. Economy is in shambles. While we're certainly in a recession, the magnitude of our economic crisis isn't even know yet. There is likely to be more bad news to come. Then there's health care, failing schools, long-delayed recovery in the gulf states from hurricanes, an obliterated manufacturing sector, joblessness, homelessness, and foreclosures. Oh, yeah, and wars in Afganistan and Iraq and a 'global war on terror.' A budget deficit of $455 billion is doing to drag down the next president, hindering his ability to bring the change we're all craving.

Sorta mind boggling to really lay it all out and think about, isn't it?

So here's what I'm asking you to do. Go vote! Barack Obama needs a red state mandate. We've go to make sure he carries North Carolina!!

And we have to make sure he carries other red states: Colorado, Nevada, Virginia, West Virginia, Missouri, Ohio, Indiana, and Florida. And let's pick up a surprise state or two: Georgia, or North Dakota or Montana or Mississippi.

You can help deliver the Red State Mandate by going to vote today! Here are the locations. And if you've been living under a rock and aren't yet registered to vote, you still can! Here's how.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Unsung Hero Dies

One of the great things about our country is our legion of pioneers and unsung heros who go largely unnoticed and un-thanked. Yesterday, one of those pioneers died. He was a man most of you probably never heard of, yet he quietly helped shaped and guide the LGBT movement for decades. He was Allan Spear, a State Senator from Minnesota.

Allan, who was a dear friend of mine, came out of the closet in 1974 during his first term as a State Senator. It was an era when being openly gay likely meant political suicide, but Allan chose honesty over safety. And for several decades, he remained one of only a handful of openly gay or lesbian elected officials in the US. As recently as 1993, when I was elected to the Carrboro Board of Aldermen, there were less than 50 openly gay elected officials across the country.

He not only was a leader in Minnesota, but he also took time to mentor younger openly gay leaders like Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) and me.

You may have never heard of Allan Spear, but he helped change America for the better. Read about Allan here.

Equal Rights for All? Or All Rights for a Few?

I just received this from the Human Rights Campaign, the nations largest organization working for LGBT equal rights. With all the attention being paid to the presidential race, many of us have lost track of some of the crucial initiatives on the ballot around the US. Including the ant-gay constitutional amendment in California which appears to be in danger of passing.

I believe it's wrong to right discrimination into the Constitution, to create two classes of people.

Here's the appeal from HRC. Donate now to support civil rights for ALL Americans.

Anti-LGBT groups are blanketing the state with deceptive ads....Help us get on the air immediately to counter these outright lies – every dollar you give NOW will be matched!

Dear Friend,

Marriage equality in California is now losing by 5 points, according to the latest poll numbers.

Until that poll, we were leading in California. What happened? Anti-LGBT groups are winning the fundraising battle by more than $10 million – and their vicious, untrue ads are everywhere.

Our lead has slipped, but victory is still within reach. We need to get on the air quickly to counter their lies and we need your help to do it.

Generous donors Tom Bombardier and John Fowler, along with the Human Rights Campaign, will double every online contribution TODAY, up to $120,000.

Donate now to the HRC California Marriage PAC – No on Proposition 8 and your gift for marriage equality will be DOUBLED.

Can you imagine a loving, committed, married couple watching their marriage rights evaporate against their will? I don't think there's any precedent for that in modern civilization.

Well, that's what could happen across California if Proposition 8 passes and the decision of the state Supreme Court is reversed.

Anti-LGBT forces are organizing and mobilizing furiously, raising money hand over fist, ginning up fear and resentment. Groups like Focus on the Family, members of the Mormon Church, and even the national Knights of Columbus have provided significant funding. And it appears their tactics are working – the recent polls show that California voters now favor the Amendment to ban marriage equality, 47 to 42 percent.

It's up to us to make sure the truth gets out, but we can only do that if we raise more money. Right now, their war chest is $10 million deeper than ours – and that gap is growing.

The Human Rights Campaign has been on the ground in California from the beginning of this fight, contributing time and resources, and we're not ready to give up now. In fact, we have already contributed more than $2 million to this fight. I'm guessing you aren't ready to give up either, Friend.

For those of us deeply committed to equality and dignity for LGBT Americans, the time is now – especially now that generous donors Tom Bombardier and John Fowler and HRC will double your gift and make it go twice as far.

Will you stand shoulder-to-shoulder with us today? Every dollar you give right now will be DOUBLED and sent straight to California.

Wake up on November 5th knowing you did everything you could. We have equality, basic human decency and the truth on our side. Now we need you.


Joe Solmonese

© 2008 The Human Rights Campaign. All rights reserved.
Human Rights Campaign | www.hrc.org
1640 Rhode Island Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036-3278
Phone: 202/628-4160 TTY: 202/216-1572 Fax: 202/347-5323

Monday, October 13, 2008

Just for Fun

Graig Meyer, one of the Orange County Obama delegates to the Democratic National Convention, compiled this slideshow of photos from the Democratic Convention. Graig's got some excellent shots from the convention. Enjoy!

Thanks Graig for sharing this!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Connecticut Joins Freedom March

Today the Connecticut Supreme Court ruled that Gays and Lesbians have a fundamental right to equal treatment under the law. They've ruled that gays and lesbians can marry in CT. Another state (finally) bans discrimination. Read it here.

E.J. Dionne Hits the Nail on the Head

Great piece by EJ Dionne.

Financial Crisis Hitting Close to Home

NC cities are being advised to cut their expenditures in expectation that revenues will fall as the economy enters recession. County governments, including Orange County, must also consider cuts as well as putting of new projects. Read about it here.

Friday, October 03, 2008

OC Rescue Squad Helping out in another County

It turns out the folks over at the Orange Rescue Squad aren't sitting idly by while on the 'stand down' imposed by the Orange County Emergency Services Director. Good for them; there is no sense in sitting around when they can be helping those in need. They've volunteered to help in the search for missing Granville County woman. Here's an email the Squad sent out about their activities:

For those of you who are not already aware, Kelly Currin Morris, mother of two, from Stem, NC, has been missing since September 3rd. On Thursday, September 25, Mrs. Morris’ father, Pat Currin, put out the call for help via WRAL. Mr. Currin is asking for any and all available volunteers to aid in the search for his missing daughter. The next day, on Friday September 26th, the Orange County Rescue Squad answered his call for help and are working directly for Mr. Currin. We have spent the entire day there both Friday and Saturday, and will return to Granville County first thing in the morning. What we have discovered is that this is a very large scale operation. I am not willing to discuss specifics via this email. I have information that has not yet been released to the public. I will be glad to talk to anyone who can assist face-to-face. What we know is that unless we find Mrs. Morris, this operation will continue for several days. We plan to be there each day. We need all the available help that we can get during this time. Our neighbors northeast of us are asking for our help. I know that daytime availability is limited during the week, but any help is greatly appreciated. I would like for us to get a large group together for next weekend, both Saturday and Sunday to continue this operation. Mr. Currin, the Creedmoor Fire Chief, and the Chief Deputy of Granville County Sheriff’s Office have on multiple occasions expressed to us their sincere gratitude. I can tell you that regardless of the outcome, being a part of this operation, has been a rewarding experience. I invite you all to come and work with us during this event.

I can be contacted at (919) 338-2200. At times, my signal fades, especially when down by, or on the lake. If you get voice mail, just leave a message. As a backup, you can call T. J. Whitfield at (919) 691-3616. He and I have different carriers, so one may work where the other doesn’t. As for tomorrow, we leave again at 08:30.

If you cannot assist, there are other ways to help. The family is selling “Team Kelly” T-Shirts in support of the search operations for $15.00 each. Please get with me directly and I will get a shirt for you.