- Pope Francis wins another ‘Person of the Year’ — from gay rights magazine
- Rep. Steve Stockman: Give my campaign $10, and you’ll get an Obama barf bag
- Putin: Russia to buy $15 billion in Ukraine bonds
- Expert: Obamacare ‘death spiral’ fears exaggerated
- Alabama firefighters dig for survivors of apartment blast
- Big Sur wildfire destroys home of firefighting chief
- ‘ ’Twas the Night Before Christmas’ set for mock trial to argue authorship
- Angela Merkel’s third term as Germany’s chancellor to be marked by move to left
- Mega Millions entices with record-setting jackpot: Half a billion so far
- Dennis Rodman heads to North Korea — despite execution, political purge
Gay alliance set to make voice heard in elections
Legalizing prostitution among platform issues
It’s a mayoral election year in Washington, and special-interest groups are laying out their agendas. The gay community is no exception.
Members of the D.C. lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community are speaking again with a united voice and an agenda that runs the policy gamut - from mental health and public safety to youth and human rights issues.
Decriminalization of prostitution is on the list, too.
Titled “Agenda 2010: An Election-Year Guide to Local LGBT Issues in Washington, D.C.,” the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance’s platform touts the legislative victory that made the nation’s capital “the first majority black jurisdiction in the United States to enact civil marriage equality,” urges teachers and others to push in-school gay-straight allegiances and says prostitution should be legalized.
The draft plan also says LGBT groups should be permitted to train students, teachers and administrators on such things as harassment.
GLAA, as the alliance is commonly called, and gays say they won’t go unnoticed this election season.
Mr. Ray’s supporters include Washingtonians with high name recognition, including former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, two former first ladies of Washington, D.C. - retired college professor Cora Masters Barry and Ray campaign treasurer Diane Williams, wife of former D.C. Mayor Anthony A. Williams - and the Rev. Willie Wilson, pastor of the 2,000-member-strong Union Temple Baptist Church in Southeast. Mr. Wilson, whose church community is very politically active and is entrenched in social work, ran for mayor in 2002 but dropped out before the primary.
Gays also are trying to bolster their ranks on the D.C. Council, where two openly gay members, David Catania and Jim Graham, have been serving for more than a decade. Two gay Republicans are running for ward seats, Tim Day of Ward 5 and Marc Morgan of Ward 1.
Although gays are happy that the District finally passed medical-marijuana and same-sex marriage laws and has implemented several human rights and domestic policies that protect LGBT members, GLAA says its supporters shouldn’t rest on those laurels.
GLAA issues questionnaires to candidates in each major election cycle and grades respondents according to their answers on gay issues. For instance, in the crowded 2006 Democratic mayor’s field, Adrian M. Fenty won the gay community’s support because he supported same-sex marriage.
Decriminalization of prostitution is another GLAA policy.
GLAA lays out its argument, “Prostitution: Legalize It, Regulate It, Zone It, Tax It,” in Section 6 of the agenda, which discusses adult entertainment.
“Sex workers,” including transgender and gay teens, shouldn’t be criminally punished because sometimes they have no other option than to prostitute themselves, GLAA says.
“As advocates of the legalization of prostitution, we think it needs neither sanitizing nor glorifying,” the draft agenda says. “It is not a profession filled exclusively with people who freely chose it from a host of other options. No doubt there are some in that category, like the college student turning tricks for extra cash. But too many turn to it by necessity.”
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Award-winning opinion writer Deborah Simmons is a senior correspondent who reports on City Hall and writes about education, culture, sports and family-related topics. Mrs. Simmons has worked at several newspapers, and since joining The Washington Times in 1985, has served as editorial-page editor and features editor and on the metro desk. She has taught copy editing at the University of ...
- SIMMONS: A little girl's life shows scars of domestic violence
- SIMMONS: Pictures of Obama and 'Dane' lady don't lie
- SIMMONS: Mandela: May the man of many roles rest in peace
- SIMMONS: Obama visits Southeast D.C. with minimum wage on his mind
- SIMMONS: Mayor Gray has only himself to outrun in campaign
Latest Blog Entries
By John R. Bolton
The president fiddles at his domestic altar while the world burns
- PRUDEN: The scam that will not die
- BOLTON: Nero in the White House
- Robert E. Lee and 'Stonewall' Jackson tributes face Army War College removal
- Wasted: Tom Coburn's 'Wastebook targets 70 days in bed, Facebook
- Embassy Row: India strikes back over diplomat's arrest
- Zadzooks: The Joker sixth scale figure review (Sideshow Collectibles)
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Colorado revolt: 55 of 62 sheriffs refuse to enforce new gun laws
- Army to cut up to 4,000 captains and majors
- U.S. downplays Saudi prince's criticism of Obama's Middle East policies
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Uncensored exploration of issues concerning current events, civil liberties, American political advocacy, and the political and social issues facing military veterans.
NFL junkie Eric Golub reports on his favorite obsession. There is no football offseason. Every February he pretends to care about other sports while sobbing uncontrollably each Sunday until September.
Television commentary, reviews, news and nonstop DVR catch-up by Lisa King Dolloff and friends.
Wall Street news for retail investors who want to know what's going on.
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow