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Baby Steps Towards Equality | The Nation

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The Notion

Unfiltered takes on politics, ideas and culture from Nation editors and contributors.

Baby Steps Towards Equality

It's over a year into an Obama administration, and already that word “compromise” has been heard too much. Yet when the news hit Monday night that the administration had agreed to a compromise that would see Congress voting on overturning Don't Ask Don't Tell, hopes rose again.

There's still a way to go to full equality in the military. Congress still has to vote, and Republicans like John McCain (previously a supporter of repeal) now say they'll oppose.

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There is, as I mentioned, compromise. No Congressional repeal will go into effect until after a Pentagon study hits the Hill December 1. Only after that, will the Pres give an executive order to actually enact the reform. Which he could do, er, now.

But still, in a world of baby steps it seems like a stride. In this case, toward overturning a Clinton-era policy put in place after many presidential promises to the gay community. Obama has a chance, to do the right thing. How did he get there? Pressure. While equality lovers are celebrating, remember those protestors in uniform chained to the White House Fence when everyone told them to trust the president's word? Who confronted the Pres whereever he went -- who didn't compromise? They brought us this far, and with any luck they'll keep the pressure on to bring us a step closer to the promise of every person born equal. No compromise.

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