Monday, September 20, 2010

Lady Gaga goes all out on Don't Ask Don't Tell

Posted By on Mon, Sep 20, 2010 at 1:57 PM

Lady Gaga came to Charlotte Saturday and wowed a sold-out Time Warner Arena. At one point in the show, she continued her high-visibility campaign to repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, asking audience members to call a U.S. Senate phone number, which was shown on the huge screens next to the stage. Yes, she did. I realize that you wouldn’t know about her taking a political break during her concert if you’d only read Observer accounts of the show, but believe me, she did. And since I asked her to do just that in Friday’s CLog, I’m now saying thank you. (I’m not delusional enough to think she brought up DADT in Charlotte because of a blog item, I’m just expressing thanks, OK?).

She’s back in the national news today, as she plans to attend a Repeal DADT rally in Portland, Maine, on the eve of a vote on the issue in the U.S. Senate. She will stand alongside veterans discharged because of DADT policy, which forbids military recruiters from asking about people's sexual orientations and prohibits service members from revealing if they're gay. Maine’s two moderate Republican senators are undecided, thus the emphasis on Maine.

Her campaign is drawing some of the fiercest comments on the web I've ever seen, both positive and negative, which at least shows the message is getting through, I suppose. For those who think it’s silly or stupid or whatever that Lady Gaga is pushing this issue so strongly, just a reminder that the campaign to make Martin Luther King’s birthday a national holiday was initiated and publicly hyped repeatedly by another popular singer, Stevie Wonder. I give Lady Gaga credit for her efforts, and only wish that the issue had been taken care of earlier by the Obama administration, as was pledged during the 2008 campaign.

Here are two videos, one of Lady Gaga in Charlotte (her DADT comments start at around 3:15). The other is a message she recorded and distributed to members of the U.S. Senate.

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