Civil Rights

The Senate’s call to action on ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’

For the past seventeen years since President Bill Clinton’s signature, our armed forces have had their hands tied with a policy that inhibits recruitment, retention and readiness—10 USC Sec. 654, commonly known as ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ Now, it is the Senate that can end the waste of resources that prop up an unfounded and unconstitutional policy.

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Reid my lips: no forgiveness if no NDAA in September

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has a stark choice to make. He can schedule the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for floor time and a vote during this Senate work period or he can take sole personal responsibility for continuing to put the lives and livelihoods of gay troops at risk by pushing off the authorization bill, which includes a "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) repeal provision, into the free-for-all lame duck session.

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End birthright citizenship (Rep. Phil Gingrey)

Controversy surrounding illegal immigration has been topping recent news headlines, as thousands of people continue to pour across our borders unlawfully each year.  This is of particular concern to me, as Georgia is home to more illegals – nearly 450,000 – than the state of Arizona.  One aspect of the immigration debate on which lawmakers can all agree is that our current system is broken and in dire need of reform.  But surprisingly, the latest disconnect centers around what should be a very simple question – does being born in the United States automatically constitute citizenship?  For decades, the statue defining citizenship has been a point of contention.  It is long past time to clear up the ambiguity.

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Women's right to vote celebates 90 years but struggle for equality continues

Ninety years ago today, our country corrected a great injustice by guaranteeing women the right to vote. This progress would not have been possible without the courage, foresight and tenacity of those pioneers who risked everything to ensure that women had this fundamental, inalienable right. 

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The Big Question: Is Obama's stance on mosque correct?

Some of the nation's top political commentators, legislators and intellectuals offer insight into the biggest question burning up the blogosphere today.

Today's question:

What do you think of President Obama's stance on the building of a Muslim community center in lower Manhattan?


Some background reading here.

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Repealing the 14th Amendment is wrong for America

For well over a century, children born on American soil have been American citizens.  Changing that guarantee is not a new idea, but Arizona Senator Jon Kyl’s proposed hearings on the subject have given it new life.  A close look at the history and purpose of the citizenship provision makes clear why changing it would harm us all. 

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Proposition 8 Ruling Is a Game-Changer

U.S. District Chief Judge Vaughn R. Walker’s decision yesterday in Perry v. Schwarzenegger, which struck down California’s ban on marriage for gay couples, will be remembered as a turning point in the gay rights movement. And that’s not because it was the first time a court struck down a ban on marriage rights for gay couples on constitutional grounds. As important and key as that outcome is, the big win was finally having a thorough, factual, and evidence-based analysis of what marriage for gay couples actually means.
 
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Why we should welcome McConnell's demand for hearings on rescinding 14th amendment (Rep. Luis Gutierrez)

The "your papers, please" hysteria spreading through the Republican Party has reached a new low. Now, they want to corrupt the U.S. Constitution to promote their opposition to immigrants and immigration. Senior leaders in the House and Senate are introducing legislation and calling for hearings to explore whether we should change the U.S. Constitution to ensure that more people in the United States are denied citizenship or legal immigration status. Specifically, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell joined an array of Republican lawmakers who feel we should examine whether to rescind all or part of the 14th amendment to the Constitution to prevent some children born in the U.S. from being granted U.S. citizenship. The pro-life, pro-family Republicans are now pro-neonatal detention and deportation. It isn't enough to drive out the people not born here, now they want to drive out the ones that were.

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Stopping violence against women worldwide

Violence against women is a worldwide crisis, and a bill scheduled to come before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday, the International Violence against Women Act, would improve the way U.S. foreign assistance is provided to address such violence.

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