What Sorts of Candidates?

In the battle for the American Presidency, the question of “what sorts of people do we want?” needs top be asked of all candidates. Both major parties are reaching out to diverse sub-populations. Both claim to be advocates for people of diverse abilities, sexual orientations, and gender identities as well as all other minorities. However, Biden and Obama appear to go a lot further than McCain based on previous track records.

Obama was a strong advocate for the Matthew Shepard National Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act which would have extended federal protection to people with disabilities as well as gays and lesbians. McCain opposed it. Biden introduced the Crime Victims With Disabilities Act of 2007. Obama pledges to work to get the US to sign the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

McCain and his soon to be announced running mate should be asked what they are prepared to do. Hopefully, they are prepared to make the same commitments.

What Sorts of Families?

According to John McCain, “two parent families the traditional family represents.”

A recent Huffington Post article by Edward Stein draws attention to McCain’s cant about wanting to preserve family value–unless, of course, those family values are being instantiated by gay couples fostering or adopting children. Stein highlights McCain’s in-artful refusal to answer straight questions about gay adoption, presumably in an attempt to keep both the religious right and gay Republicans happy.

See for yourself. The video below the fold [no captioning, sorry] shows McCain’s responses to questions posed in an interview with George Stephanopoulos. Continue reading