Senator McCoy’s Remarks on National Coming Out Day
It is a day for all of us who live out lives to celebrate our unique qualities. Sadly many Iowans and many Americans are not out at work, home and in their community. Many feel afraid for their safety, job security or housing if they come out. In more than 28 states in our nation you can be fired for being gay or transgender. Attorney General Sessions just announced that gender identity is not protected in this country. President Trump sent a message that impacted more than 15, 000 brave Transgender Americans who serve the United States Military. By tweet he announced to those Americans that he would ban transgender Americans from serving in the US Military. Imagine waking up to that tweet as you defend your nation in hostile parts of the world. For those that feel that the battle is over for full-equality I have a message. You simply are not paying attention. LGBTQ Americans are under attack. This is the most anti-gay administration ever elected to the Whitehouse. After waving our PRIDE Flag in the campaign and promising to be right on LGBTQ issues--Trump has shown us what a dirty, filthy, racist liar he is. The impact of their backward, hatful racist policies will be felt for decades in the courts at Trump has appointed judges, and through policies they have in acted and executive orders that they have and will issue. One person who will never be victimized by backward, racist policies is Donna Red Wing. • Everyone who knows Donna loves Donna. She is kind, wicked smart and a champion for the underdog.
Just to give you a little background on Donna-- • She has been described by the Christian Coalition as “the most dangerous woman in America.” Which makes her golden in my book. • Throughout her life she has always stood for equality for all. • As a visionary leader she headed Interfaith Alliance, The Gill Foundation, National Policy Director for the Human Rights Campaign and also National Director of GLAAD, Director of the Lesbian Community Project and a member of President Barack Obama’s kitchen Cabinet on LGBT concerns. Donna led One Iowa as our Executive Director and helped Iowans talk about being LGBT. She discovered Iowans who were forced back into the closest as they entered the twilight of life entering nursing homes and not being welcome to live honestly and acknowledgement of long-term partners. Donna is facing a new challenge herself. She is courageously battling cancer today. It is so fitting that we acknowledge her work on National Coming Out Day. I can tell you that Donna is an incredible fighter and she intends to kick Cancer in the butt. As if any of us had any doubts about that. It is the strength and courage that Donna has demonstrated over her lifetime that allows individuals to live and speak freely about their sexual orientation. I am honored to recognize Donna Red Wing for her life’s work and recognize her wife Sumitra who has been with Donna on every step of this journey.