Four days ago thirteen American heroes chained themselves to the White House fence to protest Don't Ask, Don't Tell. One of those was our own Clarknt67, someone a lot of us here on Daily Kos will recognize from his numerous RecList'ed diaries on the effort to repeal this antediluvean policy. He's now demonstrated that not only can he write better than most, but that he can wield handcuffs and deal with a paddy-wagon with the best of them.
(that's him, third from the right, avoiding the camera)
Below are pictures of these thirteen committed activists; ready to go to jail for the proposition that all men and women are created equal. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Harvey Milk would be proud of them all.
Lt. Dan Choi:
Dan should need no introduction. He was discharged in July of 2010. This is Dan's third time on the White House fence. This iconic image of James Pietrangelo and Choi shows his first protest in late March, 2010.
Petty Officer Autumn Sandeen:
This is Autumn's second time on the fence. Autumn is one of the editors at Pam's House Blend. Here's an essay she wrote about the protest.
Corporal Evelyn Thomas:
Evelyn was discharged in 1991. She now runs a ministry for LGBT military personnel. Evelyn was on the fence with Autumn back in April, 2010, as was
Cadet Mara Boyd:
Here's an article about Mara, including a picture of Sandeen, Thomas and Boyd on the fence eight months ago.
Robin is the co-founder of GetEqual, the group which organized this event and other acts of civil disobedience in search of equality. A picture (scroll down) of her in more pleasant company and circumstances. On November 17th, Robin was invited to the White House and spoke with staffer Brian Bond. Here's Robin describing the meeting.
Dan Fotou and Staff Sergeant Miriam Ben-Shalom::
Dan is a strategist for GetEqual.
Miriam was discharged in 1976 for being a lesbian. She became the first-ever LGBT servicemember reinstated to her position in the U.S. Military, by a U.S. Federal District Court. Miriam is also no stranger to the White House fence. On July 30th, 1993, Miriam and 26 other protesters were arrested at the White House fence for protesting then-President Bill Clinton's broken promise to repeal the gay ban - instead signing the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" bill into law. A picture of that protest.
Sergeant Justin Elzie:
Justin fought his discharge under the new Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy back in 1993 and won a reprieve. He went on to serve four years in the Marine Corps. Here's a video of an interview with Elzie.
Army Arabic Linguist Ian Finkenbinder:
Ian was discharged in 2004, just before he was to return for a second tour of duty in Iraq.
Veteran Robert Smith:
Robert left the Army after serving in Iraq and Kuwait because of the pressure of living under Don't Ask, Don't Tell. He was a specialist with the Fourth ID based out of Fort Carson.
Father Geoff Farrow:
The Reverend was suspended as a priest after he spoke out against the Catholic Church's support of Proposition 8. Father Farrow's blog.
Scott writes a mean diary here on Daily Kos. And likes to sing while getting arrested.
Michael was a close friend of Leonard Matlovich, a veteran of the Vietnam War and the first gay service member to fight the ban on gays in the military. Michael maintains a site devoted to Matlovich's memory.
You probably aren't going to engage in civil disobedience. You probably aren't going to be elected to the House of Representatives or the Senate. You probably aren't going to be appointed to a position in the Department of Defense that makes personnel policy.
But if you want to do what you can to insure that these thirteen and others like them did not take theirs action in vain, here's what you can do: Call the White House and swing Senators and let them know exactly how you feel about this bigoted policy. Here's full contact information for the White House and potential swing-vote Senators. Take just a minute where these heroes took days of their lives to take a stand.
The River Market, 500 Clinton Ave Ste 401, Little Rock, AR 72201
501-375-2993 870-382-1023 870-910-6896 479-251-1224
912 West Fourth Street, Little Rock, AR 72201
317-554-0750 812-465-6500 260-426-3151 219-852-2763
1650 Market Tower, 10 West Market St., Indianapolis, IN 46204
207-622-8414 207-945-0417 207-780-3575
One Canal Plazam, Suite 802, Portland, ME 04101
207-786-2451 207-622-8292 207-945-0432
3 Canal Plaza, Suite 601, Portland, ME 04101
2400 JFK Federal Building, 55 New Sudbury Street, Boston, MA 02203
216-522-7095, 513-684-3265, 419-259-3895
1240 East 9th Street, Room 3061, Cleveland, OH 44199
101 12th Ave, Room 216, Fairbanks, AK 99701
180 Market Tower, 10 West Market St., Indianapolis, Indiana 46204
804-771-2221 276-679-4925 757-518-1674 540-772-4236
507 East Franklin Street, Richmond, VA 23219
7700 Bonhomme, #615 St. Louis, MO 63105
202-225-4835 (Congressional office)
email (Congressperson form)
847-940-0202 (local Congressional office)
707 Skokie Boulevard, Suite 350, Northbrook, IL 60062
125 North Main Street, Concord, NH 03301
email (governor's page)
304-205-5889 (senate campaign office phone)
11 Hart Senate Office Building Washington DC, 20510
803-933-0112 864-250-1417 803-366-2828
508 Hampton Street, Suite 202, Columbia, SC
702-388-5020 775-882-7343 775-686-5750
Lloyd D. George Bldg., 333 Las Vegas Blvd S, Suite 8016 Las Vegas, NV 89101
124 West Allegan, Suite 1810, Lansing, MI
White House Comment Line: 202-456-1111
Email the White House: form
Contact information for all Senators: US Senate
Acknowledgement: Thanks for GetEqual for the photos, linked from their Flicker account.