Joseph Rocha on the DADT votes: ‘It is time to take names.’

My good friend, Joseph Christopher Rocha, wrote a post with his reaction to the DADT votes yesterday. He’s taking names— the names of the 206 members of Congress who voted against equality last week:

It took 17 years for the United States Congress to decide that our gay and lesbian service-members are equal human beings to their straight counterparts. Yet, still 206 members of Congress voted against this.

It is time to take names.

Many of these 206 members of Congress who voted against valuing our gay troops blood and sacrifice as equal to their straight counterparts feared that repealing DADT would lead to an avalanche of gay rights across this Country. I expect nothing less.

It is veterans who won this battle. Many honorable organizations undoubtedly provided the outlet and tiresome behind-the-scenes work, but as we saw in 1993, that was not enough. I am confident that in the spirit of Harvey Milk’s cry of “you must come out,” it was our veterans’ willingness to brave the scrutiny of the media and the opposition that got us to this historic day. They selflessly lent their face to this movement.

No longer could the lies and hatred of Senator’s like McCain and Representatives like Duncan Jr. carry any weight against the courageous faces, stories, lives and sacrifice of this community’s veterans.

As the years go by and we see honorable gay men and women ascend the ranks of every branch of our Armed Forces, we will see the final deterioration of bigotry across this land. When someone dare say we are not equally entitled to marriage or job protection, a little girl or a little boy will one day soon stand up in protest and say “Gays are military Heroes!”

On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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