Author: Carl

The Gay, Lesbian and BiQ Movement Gets the Vote

The Gay, Lesbian and BiQ Movement Gets the Vote

Column: Amid the victory cheers, Bass knows she has her work cut out for her.

This story appears in the latest issue of Campaign, the magazine of the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) — a bimonthly, bilingual newsletter for progressive leaders.

On the night of March 4, when the historic passage of Proposition 209, the statewide ban on gay marriage, was announced in San Francisco, an out lesbian activist who grew up in the Bay Area was excited and energized. She and her lesbian friends couldn’t wait to make their way to the polls to vote and then to the state capital to register and be part of the historic movement for marriage equality.

In the weeks since, the Lesbian, Gay and BiQ (LGBTQ) community has faced setbacks in many states, from California, to Maine, and New Jersey. But at least we got the vote, a major milestone in the history of the LGBTQ movement.

“I was so proud to be part of that,” said Maricela Egea, the president of the New York City chapter of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, whose office in Queens was where the news of Proposition 209 broke Tuesday morning.

She and her staff were not allowed to vote, Egea said. The group was not aware of what was happening, only learning when they arrived in the city at 10 a.m. “We went to vote, but we’re not allowed to,” she said. “I cried. I said, ‘Thank God that we are here.’”

In fact, Egea was among those who were told to leave the polls on Election Day as they were counting.

By Tuesday, more than 200,000 gay, lesbian and bisexual New Yorkers were eligible to vote. It’s possible that at least 200,000 of them, like Egea, were told not to

Leave a Comment