More than 1,500 New Yorkers gathered today in Manhattan to mourn the death of a 32 year-old gay man, who was shot down on Friday just blocks away from the historic Stonewall Inn in an apparent act of anti-gay bias.
Hip-hop duo honors lesbian service members in wake of DADT repeal
There have been a great number of responses to the repeal of the military’s discriminatory “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law, which banned gay and lesbian services members from serving openly. GLAAD recently highlighted the national media’s coverage of the law’s end and joined the majority of American in applauding the repeal.
“Today, America took a momentous step forward in the pursuit of full equality by fully repealing 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' and opening its military to every brave man and woman willing to serve, whether straight or gay,” said Acting GLAAD President Mike Thompson. “At long last, gay and lesbian service members can serve their country openly and honestly. The courage, perseverance and patriotism displayed by the American military shines even more brightly today as our nation strengthens its national security and takes a firm stand against discrimination in our Armed Forces.”
This momentous step has brought about a number of responses celebrating the end of the law. One of the most poignant responses to the end of DADT comes from God-Des and She, a hip-hop/pop/soul duo from the Midwest. The duo’s video titled, “Goodbye DADT,” is a beautifully expressive, loving and insightful photo collage of service women and their partners. Focused specifically on lesbian military personnel, the video portrays not only images of the women and their partners, but also gives the viewer brief insight into each woman’s life. It helps the viewer to share in each couple’s love, while celebrating the end of DADT with thought provoking and engaging commentary.
This video marks the first time that some of the women have been shown in public with their partners. The song for the video, titled “Stand Up,” focuses on the powerful message of “standing up for what you believe in” and inciting change for the better. God-Des and She rap and sing about “not giving up,” “not losing hope,” and the importance of “not just talking revolution,” but “acting revolution” amidst loving images that remind the viewer to press forward for equality.
A truly touching portrayal of lesbians in the military, God-Des and She had this to say about the reason they wanted to honor those women and create this video:
“In honor of DADT being repealed on September 20, 2011 we asked our fans to share their stories and pictures with us. The stories they sent touched us so much that we decided to produce a video in their honor. We were just saying how sometimes you don’t know why you write a song until years later. We wrote a song called ‘Stand Up’ in 2007, and we now believe this is the reason why. Please share this video far and wide. We were so inspired and we hope you will be too!”
The video reminds the community that there is still work to be done before our armed forces are fully equal. The military still does not allow openly transgender Americans to serve their country in the armed forces, regardless of skill level. The so-called “Defense of Marriage Act” also does not allow same-sex couples who legally marry their spouses to have those marriages recognized by the federal government.
We must push for equality for everyone to ensure our nation’s security. In the meantime, let’s “Stand Up,” honor and celebrate this glorious leap with God-Des and She.
Check out the video here!
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