The following is a response to the article “Some won’t ‘get over’ Daniels, gays meeting” published in the Indianapolis Star on September 19, 2004.
Micah Clark’s recent comments concerning the Daniels campaign meeting with Indiana GLBT leaders lead one to believe that Mitch Daniels has something to hide. As one of the people in attendance, I find that statement to be utterly without merit. While I doubt Mitch gained any favor with the positions he stated during the meeting, he did gain a greater respect. Mr. Daniels came into a meeting knowing the majority of those in attendance did not support him.
Mitch stated during his opening address that he met with all kinds of different interest groups, even labor unions. I don’t believe that Mitch Daniels will gain too many votes from organized labor this fall, yet he has attempted to meet with them. In an age of highly charged partisan politics, Mitch Daniels has shown himself to be a refreshing change from the typical party talking heads.
It’s obvious that Micah Clark and Mitch Daniels do have some significant differences regarding the GLBT community. Mitch did show that he understands that GLBT Hoosiers are citizens, not pedophilic criminals. Mitch’s non-discrimination policy is pretty much in line with what the majority of Americans believe. According to a 2002 poll conducted by Lake Snell Perry & Associates Inc 61 percent of Americans believe that the country needs laws to protect transgender people from discrimination. Sixty-eight percent of Americans believe that we need laws to protect against anti-transgender hate crimes.
Many public officials talk about governing “all the people” but only pander to their political base. Mitch Daniels showed that he “walks the walk and talks the talk”. Regardless of who wins the upcoming gubernatorial election, it is heartening to see that both candidates believe that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Hoosiers should be able to work without fear of being discriminated against simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. That is a
victory for all Hoosiers.