The Department of Justice has now ended a five year old policy of denying the LGBT employee group, DOJ Pride, the same privileges it offers other minority groups.
Justice Department workers had celebrated Pride in the Great Hall of DOJ headquarters every June since the mid 1990s when President Bill Clinton first declared a Gay Pride Month. However, Bush declined throughout his presidency to issue a proclamation for the event, which DOJ heads Ashcroft and Gonzales used as an excuse to ban the pride celebration starting in 2003.
The new Attorney General, Michael Mukasey, now has reversed that ban. In a statement to DOJ Pride, Mukasey said that the department will "foster an environment in which diversity is valued, understood and sought."
This comes after Ashcroft and Gonzales told the employee organization that it was barred from even posting notices of its meetings on DOJ bulletin boards or distributing such messages on the department's e-mail system. This action, and the ban on pride celebrations, came after the late Rev. Jerry Falwell issued a warning to President Bush and the Republican leadership to stop "catering to gays" or lose the support of Christian conservatives.
It’s amazing that anyone in this administration uttered the words “diversity is valued, understood and sought” in reference to the LGBT community.
So pack up your rainbow tank-tops and cut-off jean shorts and head to the newest, hottest, Gay Pride around-
DOJ Pride, hosted by the Bush Administration.
Look for a great dance remix of John Ashcroft’s smash hit “Let the Eagles Soar”, as well as the Waterboarding Wet T-shirt Contest…