“Make America great again”—the catchphrase of the current president and the fascistic movement he represents—has really always meant “hate again.” No oppressed group has been spared from the vile acts and statements emanating from the White House every day.
People of color, im/migrants, Muslims, women and other oppressed genders, people with disabilities and the LGBTQ2S+ community have all seen their hard-fought rights rolled back—as has the working class as a whole.
Many in the LGBTQ2S+ movement are incredulous about an Aug. 15 op-ed piece in the Washington Post by the president and vice president of the Log Cabin Republicans, who endorse Donald Trump for reelection in 2020. Robert Kabel and Jill Homan praised Trump for “taking bold actions that benefit the LGBTQ community.”
Well, that’s a mountain of equine excrement if there ever was one!
The day after the op-ed appeared, BuzzFeed reported: “The Trump administration on Friday took one of its most aggressive steps yet to legalize anti-transgender discrimination by telling the Supreme Court that federal law allows firing workers solely for being transgender.” (Aug. 16)
That happened just two days after the Department of Labor granted federal contractors permission to practice workplace discrimination—as long as it’s based on religion. This has widespread implications for millions of workers employed by thousands of entities that contract with the federal government.
‘Bold actions’ indeed!
These two outrages are the latest in a series of anti-LGBTQ2S+ actions, including the military ban on trans people, removing trans-specific health care benefits from the Affordable Care Act, giving federal agencies and medical providers a religion-based license to discriminate, denying visas to same-sex partners of foreign diplomats, and removing trans youth and students from Title IX sex discrimination protections.
Trump rescinded a Barack Obama administration memorandum that had interpreted Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act to prohibit discrimination based on “sex-stereotyping”—that is, discriminating against a worker whose gender identity, gender expression or sexuality conflicts with patriarchal norms. Now the sex discrimination case of a fired trans woman has made it to the Supreme Court and Trump has weighed in on the side of a bigoted funeral home director.
Need more? How about the appointments given to blatantly misogynistic and anti-LGBTQ2S+ individuals like Supreme Court Judges Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, who has lavished her Amway fortune on hate groups like Focus on the Family.
These political moves serve to legitimize and encourage the violent hatred that has killed at least 12 trans people this year, most of them women of color.
But Kabel and Homan go on to argue that LGBTQ2S+ people also benefit from other aspects of the Trump agenda, such as tax cuts and foreign policy. Really? Who benefits from tax cuts for the rich? Who benefits from a bloated military budget? Not working-class queers who shoulder the cost.
Why would any member of an oppressed group go on public record supporting the bigot-in-chief? Because these Log Cabin capitalists have gotten richer under Trump. They are putting their class interests ahead of the LGBTQ2S+ community.
While the world’s most influential newspapers like to give ink to the gay elite, the real conversations are happening in the streets. Anti-corporate, anti-police alternative Pride events have taken place all over the country, from Austin, Texas, to Columbus, Ohio, to a march of 40,000 in New York City.
Queer youth, especially queer youth of color, see no future under the capitalist system of exploitation—and are rising up against it.