"A gaggle of sign-waving protestors milled around outside The Beverly Hilton, the sprawling hotel on Wilshire Boulevard. They must have caught the president’s eye when he arrived at the hotel from an earlier stop in Las Vegas because he relayed one of their messages to the crowd.He didn't know which promises we were asking him to keep? Gee, maybe Obama should look at his own website for a refresher course. But wait, that might not be a good idea since THEY DELETE PROMISES!
"'One of them said, 'Obama keep your promise,’ ' the president said. 'I thought that’s fair. I don’t know which promise he was talking about.'
"The people in the audience – who paid $30,400 per couple to attend – laughed as they ate a dinner of roasted tenderloin, grilled organic chicken and sun choke rosemary mashed potatoes."
If he thought it was an appropriate time to crack a joke of this nature, he's wrong. But it's not like the first time he was insensitive - remember the joke he made on the Tonight Show about the Special Olympics?
I'm too angry to write anything further. As I always say, "When you're angry, step away form the computer."
ACTION: Sign this petition to Obama, urging him to end Don't Ask Don't Tell and NOT fire Lt. Dan Choi and others discharged under the policy.
Last night, a demonstration was held outside the Beverly Hilton where the Democratic National Committee fundraiser headlining President Obama was held.
Though the purpose of the demonstration was to encourage Obama to stick to his campaign promises of LGBT equality, lots of frustration was expressed on the Obama Administration's silence on LGBT issues thus far.
A good crowd turned out, gathering across the street from the hotel's entrance chanting, "Do Ask, Do Tell", "Full Equality Now" and "Out of the court, into the streets, we are ready to fight, we won’t be beat."
Rick Jacobs of the Courage Campaign and Lt. Dan Choi of Knights Out rallied the crowd.
From Unite the Fight live broadcast on Qik:
Better video at our YouTube channel. (Some is still uploading - stay tuned.)
Though cooperative, the demonstrators were passionate and sometimes spilling into the street. The LAPD had to step up several times, warning the crowd to stay out of the busy thoroughfare.
Towards the end of his chanting, Lt. Dan Choi defied the police, stepped into the street and saluted in the direction of the fundraiser, symbolically honoring the Commander-in-Chief, President Obama. It was amazing to witness.
After the demonstration, organizer Matt Palazzolo of Equal Roots Twittered, "OBAMA RALLY A SUCCESS!!!! He addressed us LGBT demonstrators outside the hotel in his speech -- he intends to keep his promise to us."
He had heard from a media source that the president referred to the demonstrators at his private speech at the fundraiser.
"According to one of the news people who delivered the message to me [Obama] said something along the lines of 'to all the people outside asking that I keep my promise, I was very happy to see you out there...because I truly want to keep my promise to you.' That is of course 2nd hand paraphrasing, though. But, still -- we got the message."
Unite the Fight then asked fundraiser attendee Mike Bonin, Chief of Staff for Los Angeles Councilmember Rosendhal and former volunteer for the Obama campaign, if Obama did in fact refer to the demonstration. Mike clarified that the president gave two speeches - one for the higher-priced tickets and one more open to the public.
From the speech that Mike heard, there was no reference. "I am so damn happy he is my president, and so damn proud I worked for his election, and so damn committed to helping push his agenda," Mike said. "But how he can come to LA, one day after the Prop 8 ruling, with DADT tossing excellent service people from the armed forces, and not say one word about equality, is beyond me. Mr. President, please speak."
Mike is getting confirmation on what was said in the president's other speech; however, he was able to corner the White House deputy chief of staff in the men's room about DADT and urged him stop the expulsion of quality service people like Lt Dan Choi.
Thanks to SheWired.com for filming the live coverage of the rally. They will also be contributing to Unite the Fight's live broadcast of Meet in the Middle this Saturday.