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Our Voices

Michael Sam Makes NFL History

Michael Sam made history today by becoming the first openly gay player to be drafted by an NFL team. Standing in front of ESPN news cameras, Sam, an All-American defensive lineman from the University of Missouri, broke down in tears, hugging and kissing his boyfriend after hearing from St. Louis Rams’ coach Jeff Fisher: “You are a Ram. The wait is finally over.” In addition to adding some more talent to their roster, the Rams’ selection of Sam marks a turning point in the...

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President Obama Addresses Immigration Reform

Yesterday, President Obama brought together a coalition of immigration reform advocates—including NCLR—and gave his first address on immigration reform since Congress finally ended the government shutdownand cleared the way to reengage with the rest of its legislative agenda. His message to Congress on this crucial issue was simple and clear: “It’s time,” he declared to a roaring crowd, “Let’s go get it done.” Earlier this year, the Senate passed legislation that would overhaul and repair our...

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Two Years after DADT’s End, Work Remains to Ensure Transgender Servicemembers Can Serve Openly

Two years ago today, on September 20, 2011, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was officially repealed. The discriminatory and stigmatizing 1994 policy that barred lesbian, gay, and bisexual servicemembers from serving openly in the military has had a damaging impact on the strength of the armed forces during one of the most dangerous military times in a generation. As a result of DADT, more than 13,500 women and men were discharged from the military because of their sexual...

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NCLR Condemns Attempt to Deny Birthright Citizenship

The National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) was outraged by the recently introduced “Birthright Citizenship Act of 2013,” discriminatory legislation that seeks to obliterate the 14th Amendment by denying birthright citizenship to the children of some immigrant parents. This legislation, which has thus far garnered little attention or support, comes amidst momentum for Congress to take up the issue of comprehensive immigration reform. Reform to the immigration system is urgently needed to...

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President Obama’s Record on LGBTQ Issues

The President’s announcement that he supports marriage equality has encouraged other high- profile leaders and organizations to express their support for marriage equality, most notably the NAACP, which decided in a near-unanimous vote to pass a resolution officially supporting marriage equality. The President also adds his voice to a growing chorus of people of faith who embrace equality not in spite of their religious beliefs, but because of them. It would be tempting to see this moment as...

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Department of Housing and Urban Development Unveils LGBTQ Equal Access Policy

In a powerful speech on Saturday, January 28th, Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan made history when he unveiled HUD’s LGBTQ Equal Access policy—a new rule that will protect more than 5.5 million people across the country from discrimination in public housing and Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-insured mortgages. The new rule, announced at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s annual Creating Change conference, will improve the lives of LGBTQ...

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President Obama Presents Economic Blueprint

Tonight, President Obama gave his third State of the Union address, which focused on building a lasting economic recovery. For the first time in our nation’s history, two out lesbians—Air Force Colonel Ginger Wallace and Lorelei Kilker—were among the select group invited to attend the speech as guests of First Lady Michelle Obama. Wallace is an Air Force intelligence officer who served in the Iraq war. When she was recently promoted to her current rank, her partner participated in her official...

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My Movie Night with President Barack Obama: Thurgood Marshall’s Legacy and LGBTQ Equality

Sitting in the White House last night for a truly “once in a lifetime moment”—a movie screening of “Thurgood” with President Barack Obama—I was moved by how far justice and equality has really come in our nation, and how much further we have to go to finish the promise of “equality and justice for all.” Just a few feet from me, President Obama sat in one of the plush, red seats in the White House’s movie theater to watch the biopic about Thurgood Marshall, the lead attorney and key architect...

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Supreme Court Rules on Title VII! Give now & Celebrate!