With all of the wild happenings of today ( the Proposition 8 trial, Sarah Palin joining Fox News, Republicans trying to smear Harry Reid, Mark McGuire and steroids), please forgive me for focusing on a little bit of selfish news.
The Huffington Post ran a piece I wrote about the unsuccessful attempts to remove Obama appointee Kevin Jennings.
I wrote it last weekend and I hope that it will be seen as THE definitive piece of the entire kerfluffle:
Despite a heavy December effort last year by various groups, i.e., Big Government, Gateway Pundit, Fox News, etc., the push to get Obama appointee Kevin Jennings fired died back in October when the charge that he aided and abetted the sexual abuse of a child turned out to be a false accusation and an embarrassment to the right.
When President Obama initially appointed Jennings to be the Assistant Deputy Secretary for the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools at the U.S. Department of Education, I doubt he realized that his political enemies would attack Jennings with the unrelenting stridency of the Greeks attacking the city of Troy.
But they did and it made for an interesting part of 2009 as members of the right pored through Jennings' past writing and speeches in an attempt to find reasons to have him dismissed and, by extention, embarrass the Obama Administration.
As the situation progressed, it became less of a campaign fueled by righteous indignation and a desire to protect children (which it never was in the first place) and served as an example of the mad goings on in Washington as well as the depths some people will stoop in order to push a lie.
Not too many people are aware of this, but some on the right had bad blood with Jennings long before his appointment to the Obama Administration.
Jennings, an openly gay former teacher, founded GLSEN (the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Network), an organization largely responsible for gay student awareness in high schools, most specifically through the annual Day of Silence in which participating students take a vow of silence during the day to bring attention to the bullying of gay students.
However to some on the right, specifically the religious right, acknowledging the simple fact that gay students exist is a problem (they like to use the word "recruitment" a lot) and daring to devote any iota of attention to the problems these students face because of an unsupportive environment is akin to the plot of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.
For years, organizations such as Concerned Women for America, the Family Research Council, and the rest of the usual suspects have unsuccessfully tried to either eliminate or undermine the Day of Silence with the most recent failed attempt being the Day of Truth, in which they encourage students to tell the truth about homosexuality.
Of course the truth to them encompasses either citing discredited Paul Cameron studies or legitimate studies taken out of context.
The fact that Obama chose Jennings, a man whom they have already had negative history with, was probably something that they couldn't stomach from the get-go.
You can read the rest here.
And I would be remiss if I didn't thank Pam Spaulding for her help in getting this published. I owe you big, Pam. When is your birthday again?