Exclusive: GetEQUAL Announces Exciting And Important Leadership Change
Heather Cronk has served as the Managing Director of GetEQUAL and today she announces an important change at the LGBT civil rights organization, in this exclusive op-ed.
Today, GetEQUAL is undergoing a transition of leadership.
Starting today, Felipe Sousa-Rodriguez and I will begin serving as co-directors of GetEQUAL. This decision has been a long time coming and has resulted in some incredible conversations with our board members. For a board to trust the leadership of the organization to a young female seminary graduate from the South and a young undocumented man from Brazil is a brave move — but it also marks a shift that I hope becomes the norm for the LGBTQ movement.
I didn’t always have the urgency for LGBTQ equality that I do today — that I developed three years ago. I came to GetEQUAL after having worked in the progressive movement for years, but had always seen myself as an “infrastructure builder” and not an “organizer.” That all changed for me in 2010 when I started watching four brave young undocumented immigrants walking from Miami to DC, risking life and limb along the way, to draw attention to the need for the DREAM Act.
These four folks caught my attention not because of what they were saying (though that was powerful, too), but because of where they were walking. I’m from Kentucky and have lived all over the Southeast. I went to college in Georgia and have visited most of the state with college friends at one time or another. I knew the towns these four folks were walking through, and those towns weren’t going to be kind to them. These are towns where the KKK is alive and kicking — towns where sheriffs pride themselves on roughing up anyone who isn’t white. The four folks were risking their lives because they believed in their own moral equality, but they needed America to recognize that moral equality and therefore grant them legal equality. What, I asked myself, the f*&k am I doing for my own equality?
At the same time that this Trail of Dreams was happening, I had connected with Kip Williams and Robin McGehee — two crazy radicals who had just organized the National Equality March (with a legion of volunteers) and believed that LGBTQ folks not only *should* be equal under the law, but *could* be equal under the law. The crazy part was that they believed that could happen in short order — it didn’t have to take a generation, as most of our national LGBTQ organizations believed. I was skeptical. I lived in DC and was well-acquainted with the political calculus that LGBTQ issues were “the third rail of politics” and all other manner of euphemisms for “DON’T TOUCH THAT ISSUE WITH A TEN-FOOT POLE!”
But I started talking with Kip and Robin, and I started to see the organizers they were attracting — folks from states like Texas and Mississippi, folks who had been left behind by the rest of the movement, folks who were working two and three jobs to get by, but could always figure out a way to organize and take action and dream. I started to realize that there was a moment in front of us — something was simmering below the surface but, if we did thingsright, we could raise that simmer to a rolling boil. We could get equal.
Three years later, I’ve met some of the most incredible folks who are organizing at great risk to themselves, their families, and their livelihoods. GetEQUAL organizers have lost their jobs because of their activism, they have been passed over for jobs because their names are “Googable” now, and they have had enormous strain put on their families because they’ve been so “out” in their communities. This work is no joke.
I’m thrilled that I get to work every day with one of the people who inspire me the most — someone who has shown incredible courage and who has unrelenting energy for this work. Felipe was one of a small group of folks across the country who created the moral crisis around immigration that has resulted in today’s prospect of comprehensive immigration reform. I have no doubt that, as we embark on this new phase of GetEQUAL’s work, we’ll be working like mad to do exactly the same thing for LGBTQ equality — creating the moral crisis that will open up a conversation about solutions to the problem of inequality.
As Felipe and I head into our new roles as co-directors, we hope that we can continue to inspire folks just as Robin and Kip and so many of GetEQUAL’s organizers have done over the past three years. As Gaby and Carlos and Juan and, yes, Felipe walked through the South three years ago to inspire me to take action, I hope that we can do the same for the LGBTQ community and our allies. It’s time to rise up, it’s time to realize our own moral equality, and it’s time to translate that into the struggle for our legal equality. It’s time to get equal — will you join us?
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Trump Desperate to Keep Any Possible Criminal Evidence From Supreme Court: Legal Expert
Donald Trump’s decision to allow one of his lawyers to speak before a grand jury on Friday morning, instead of appealing all the way to the Supreme Court, may have been made out of fear of what the justices on the nation’s highest court might see if they reviewed the case.
According to MSNBC legal analyst Lisa Rubin, under normal circumstances, the former president would have dragged out a legal fight over attorney-client privilege that would have kept attorney Evan Corcoran from testifying under oath about Trump’s possession of government documents at his Mar-a-Lago resort that led to the FBI showing up with a warrant.
As Rubin notes, the fact that Trump let Corcoran testify over three hours raised eyebrows.
“For one, yes, it is indeed unusual, if not unheard of, for a lawyer to be litigating against a party one day and then testifying under court-ordered examination by that same party the next one,” she wrote before suggesting Trump and his legal team were looking at the long game when he might need the predominantly conservative Supreme Court to lend him a helping hand.
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Writing, “Trump has made clear he believes this Supreme Court — controlled by conservative justices, three of whom he appointed — owes him one,” she added, “My hunch is that Trump’s team let Corcoran’s testimony happen because of what’s likely involved in any request to pause, much less, review a crime-fraud-related ruling: the evidence.”
“Put another way, if Trump had petitioned the Supreme Court to stay Corcoran’s testimony and document production, the justices would have seen some, if not all, of what Judge Howell and the three-judge panel on the D.C. Circuit have already reviewed: proof that Trump misled Corcoran and engaged in criminal conduct,” she elaborated.
Rubin went on to note that Trump would likely appeal any conviction to the Supreme Court, writing, “And for someone whose one last hope, if he is ultimately charged or tried by any of the multiple entities now investigating him, is that same Supreme Court, letting the justices see evidence of his alleged crimes now would be a bridge too far.”
“Trump can’t afford to lose the Supreme Court yet,” she suggested.
You can read more here.
No TX Congressional Republican Will Say If They’re Attending Trump’s Rally in Waco – Will He Have Trouble Filling Seats?
Donald Trump‘s Saturday campaign rally in Waco, Texas, falls during the 30th anniversary of the 51-day siege that community is known for, when 86 people died after a failed ATF raid on an anti-government religious cult suspected of illegally stockpiling firearms amid allegations of sexual abuse, statutory rape, and polygamy.
Experts have been warning for a week that Trump’s choice of Waco, synonymous with violent anti-government extremism, was no accident. His rhetoric this week, including most recently Friday when he warned of “potential death & destruction” should he be indicted, has been seen as encouraging violence.
NCRM was among the first news outlets to report experts’ concerns over Trump’s choice to hold a rally in Waco during the 30th anniversary of the deadly siege.
Not a single congressional Republican from Texas will say they are attending, nor has the town’s GOP mayor, according to a report from Insider, which contacted over two dozen Republican lawmakers and other elected officials.
“None of the 30 Texas Republicans Insider contacted about the event said they were going,” Insider reveals.
“Most of the 30 GOP members contacted about Donald Trump’s inaugural visit to the site of a 30-year-old standoff between cult leader David Koresh and federal authorities did not respond to requests for comment about whether they intended to rally with the scandal-plagued candidate and perhaps say a few kind words,” Insider reports.
“Rep. Pete Sessions, a Waco native who now represents the surrounding 17th congressional district, praised Trump for shining a light on his hometown but said he’d have to miss the spectacle,” Insider adds. “Aides to Rep. Troy Nehls, one of the four House Republicans from Texas who have formally backed Trump’s 2024 run, told Insider he wouldn’t be heading to Waco because of a prior commitment in Washington, DC, this weekend.”
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Meanwhile, in addition to guest list challenges – the campaign refused to tell Insider who the guest speakers will be – Trump may have trouble filling seats.
Mary Trump, the ex-president’s niece who opposes him, has been running a campaign to get anti-Trump Americans to “sign up” for tickets to the Saturday rally, in the hopes of being able to turn away supporters.
Let’s fill this venue with empty seats.https://t.co/3tGSfan5iw
— Mary L Trump (@MaryLTrump) March 24, 2023
“Donald has a rally in Waco this Saturday,” she also said via Twitter. “It’s a ploy to remind his cult of the infamous Waco siege of 1993, where an anti-government cult battled the FBI. Scores of people died. He wants the same violent chaos to rescue him from justice.”
“But we can stop him. If we book the 50,000+ venue, we can make sure most of the seats are empty when the traitor takes the stage,” she said. “We can no longer fail to hold powerful men accountable for their crimes against our country.”
Image via Shutterstock
‘Utter Cowardice’: Jim Jordan Blasted for Telling Reporter He Can’t Read Trump’s Violence-Threatening Post Without Glasses
Countless GOP lawmakers over the years have professed ignorance over Donald Trump’s tweets as reporters ask them to respond, often claiming they hadn’t read them, but House Republican Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan took that performance to a whole new level Friday afternoon.
NBC News senior national political reporter Sahil Kapur asked the Ohio Republican congressman to weigh in on Trump’s social media post threatening “potential death & destruction” if he gets indicted.
“Jordan said he hasn’t seen Trump’s post,” Kapur said via Twitter. “When I showed [it] to him on my phone, he said he can’t read well without his glasses.”
“He added he’s reviewing DA Bragg’s letter,” Kapur added.
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Jordan, who didn’t need glasses to appear on Fox Business just two days ago (photo) is getting blowback.
VICE News Deputy DC Bureau Chief Todd Zwillich explained the progression.
“The stages of ignoring incitement,” he tweeted. “2016: I don’t respond to tweets —> 2018: I havent seen the tweet —-> 2023: I literally can’t see the tweet.”
“Utter cowardice,” declared former GOP Congressman Joe Walsh. “Not at all the @Jim_Jordan I knew & served with in Congress 10 yrs ago. Or…maybe it is.”
“The sheer dishonesty and cowardice of these people,” lamented MSNBC’s Mehdi Hasan, echoing Walsh’s remarks.
Government watchdog group Citizens for Ethics said the “extent to which Trump’s backers in Congress are going to not condemn [his] calls for violence are ludicrous.”
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Some tied Jordan’s inability to see the post to his apparent inability to see or remember all the Ohio State wrestlers who say they complained to Jordan when he was their assistant coach, about being sexually harassed or assaulted by the team doctor. To this day despite numerous reports and people publicly coming forward, Jordan denied it ever happened.
“Apparently, Jim Jordan is unable to see wrestlers being sexually abused or Donald Trump social media posts,” attorney and Republican turned Democrat Ron Filipkowski tweeted.
“Well, @Jim_Jordan has shown before that he has trouble seeing threats right in front of his nose, so this checks out,” tweeted historian Kevin M. Kruse.
But Jordan’s Democratic colleagues on the Judiciary Committee may have served up the best response: “Why do you need your glasses to condemn violence @Jim_Jordan?”
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