The National Black Justice Coalition is a civil rights organization dedicated to empowering black LGBT Americans.
In a Nov. 19 article for The Advocate, NBJC CEO H. Alexander Robinson offers insights about the black-white divide and how to mend it going forward.
…We can draw some lessons from an analysis of turnout and its correlation to racial demographics that are obvious on their face. For one, we know that too few resources were dedicated to influencing African-Americans’ perceptions (and votes) on LGBT issues during this election. Of the approximately $40 million raised to fight the propositions, scant resources were directed toward the black vote in California, no attention was paid in any meaningful way in Florida, and we were hardly considered as a group to influence in other states with anti-LGBT propositions.
President-elect Obama was against Proposition 8 because he did not feel that states should put discrimination into their constitutions. Although he has said that he believes marriage should be between a man and a woman, he also believes our families should have all the rights, benefits, and responsibilities afforded to him and his wife. A serious consideration of his nuanced position would have been a good place to start a discussion about full equality in the African-American community.
As we go forward, we need to be mindful that our foes will continue to attempt to use President-elect Obama, the black church, and campaigns of deception and fear to foster their own agenda in manipulative and devious ways. President-elect Obama’ opposition to same-sex marriage is grounded in his view of marriage as a religious institution. We must be steadfast in not allowing public officials to use religion to determine their positions on matters of justice. We know as a community all too well that this reasoning can be harmful to blacks as well as LGBT people.