In a welcome development, Elizabeth Warren, the leading Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in Massachusetts, has posted a strong statement of support for equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. Under the banner “Protecting and Promoting Equality” she writes:
I’ve had the chance to say it in living rooms and school auditoriums, but I’m glad to have the chance to say it here: No one – no one – should be discriminated against because of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or religion.
I’m deeply proud to be from Massachusetts because the Commonwealth has been the nation’s leader in protecting and promoting equality – from marriage equality to the recently passed Transgender Equal Rights Bill. Congress and the President have also recently taken historic steps forward in promoting the cause of fairness and equality: the passage of the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hates Crimes Prevention Act and – after years of effort – the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
We’ve made extraordinary progress, but there is still much to do.
Warren goes on to state specific support for repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act, passage of a transgender-inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act and the provision of support for anti-bullying efforts in schools.
Stating that “We’re all in this together“, Warren places the LGBT issues she’s addressing in a larger societal context. For example, in calling for the repeal of DOMA she speaks of fairness and equality being important to “our families“. She sets the ENDA discussion within the larger framework of jobs and the economy, saying “Particularly in these uncertain times, people must have confidence that they will be judged on the merits“. Of bullying she states “After college, I taught elementary school and saw first hand how important it is for kids to learn in a safe and welcoming environment. …All children – straight, questioning, perceived, gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender – can thrive in school only when they are truly safe and secure.”
As someone who pressured the Elizabeth Warren campaign publicly for this, I’m quite pleased. Warren’s thoughtful framing indicates to me that she isn’t just issuing a pro-forma statement, she’s really on board. What do you think? Click over to Blue Mass Group to read the whole statement and decide for yourself.
Cross-posted at Blue Mass Group.