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Letters to the editor

by BAR staff

Letters to the editor

More LGBTs needed in Congress
Your article about Carl DeMaio's run for Congress prompted me to do some research ["Gay GOPer seeks CA House seat" item in Political Notebook titled, "Lesbian California Senate candidate aims to make history," August 8].

Currently there are only 10 LGBT people in Congress, out of 535 in both houses. This is only 1.8% of members. According to biologist and sexologist Alfred Kinsey and other researchers, we are 10% of the U.S. population. We deserve 10% of the seats. Both major parties need to be pressured by our community to nominate, and elect, more LGBT members to Congress.

Arlo Hale Smith
San Francisco

Omar is a hypocrite
Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota) is a fraud and a hypocrite. It seems the rights of LGBT Palestinians are a "distraction." Omar won't come out and condemn a decision this week by the Palestinian Authority to ban LGBT activities. The Palestinian Authority announced that it would not allow an LGBTQ group to hold a demonstration, and called their activities "harmful to the higher values and ideals of Palestinian society."

It appears the only people in the Middle East Omar is willing to criticize are Israelis. She tweeted very dismissively about the silencing of the LGBTQ group, saying, "Pretending that this act somehow balances or mitigates Israel violating the dignity & rights of Palestinians — or undermines case for defending Palestinian rights — is deplorable!"

She referred to the criticism as a mere distraction. "LGBTQ rights are human rights and we should condemn any effort to infringe upon them. But we should also condemn any effort to equate this with the occupation or use this as a distraction," Omar said.

LGBTQ people are being silenced, tortured, and murdered in Gaza and in many places in the Middle East, with the notable exception of Israel. I guess that's not important. Omar has been among the most vocal members of Congress against Israel and in favor of the Palestinian cause. She has also been an advocate for LGBTQ causes, but apparently that takes a back seat to her animosity against Israel. Her canceled trip last week to Israel was sponsored by Miftah, a group that has published anti-Semitic and white nationalist propaganda, according to media reports.

I am sick of the love affair the left wing of the Democratic Party has with her. I hold her accountable for her myopic fixation on Israel at the expense of all other human rights violators across the world. She is a fair-weather friend.

Joseph Barrett
Oakland, California

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