Day: June 27, 2013

Georgia Congressman John Lewis: The Connection Between Voting Rights And Gay Rights

Georgia Congressman John Lewis has been a major civil rights leader, connected with Martin Luther King, Jr,, and had his head cracked while marching for voting rights in the South.

As a Congressman since 1987, Lewis has been a voice of conscience, and was a rare case of a politician condemning the Defense Of Marriage Act , when it passed Congress in 1996, and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton, afraid to take a stand against it, due to his reelection campaign of that year for the Presidency.

At that time, Lewis compared the concept of interracial marriage,. which had been illegal until 1967, and said gay marriage was no different than interracial marriage, that anyone should be able to marry the person he or she loves!

So Lewis was devastated by the decision of the Supreme Court, negating Section 4 of the Voting Rights Acts of 1965, while thrilled by the decisions of the Supreme Court allowing for gay marriage in California, and for federal recognition of gay marriage, relating to its legality, and the right of gay couples to benefits and privileges of married couples!

Lewis has felt all kinds of emotion in the past two days, and he has stated eloquently, that voting rights guarantees that took nearly a century to accomplish, and were in place for almost half a century,. are now gone, and will it take another century to restore the guarantee of voting rights without any discrimination?

So it is hard not to feel the pain and emotional turmoil this great man, an icon of civil rights, is going through at age 73! God bless him and protect him for many more years of devoted service to civil rights and human rights!

We will see him again as the one surviving major civil rights leaders who participated 50 years ago in the March On Washington on August 28, 1963, which will be reenacted on August 24, 2013!