Can blogs influence the DADT debate?

Can LGBT blogs influence the national Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell debate?

That’s a question asked by Simon Owens at

Last weekend, Bil Browning received an email from John Aravosis, a gay activist and blogger for AMERICAblog. Aravosis and other bloggers were organizing something called a “blog swarm,” an attempt to essentially create a firehose of public outcry aimed at a single target: the Human Rights Campaign, considered by many to be the most influential LGBT lobbying group. With over 700,000 members, the organization wields significant power, a clout that extends into the White House and Congress.

And, according to those who participated in the blog swarm yesterday, this clout has not been put to good use, specifically in how much pressure it has placed on President Obama to repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. “HRC may argue that it’s already told the President it would like to see DADT repealed this year,” Aravosis wrote in his post announcing the swarm. “Well, that’s not enough.”

“I think it’s always a good idea, especially as bloggers and community journalists, to keep our own organizations on the right path,” Browning, who runs the LGBT blog The Bilerico Project, told me in a phone interview. He said that the goal of the project was to create a flood of communication — phone calls, emails, blog posts, and articles — aimed at HRC to convince them that more firm action should be taken on DADT.

While it remains to be seen if the “blog swarm” will be effective, Owens notes that since the “blog swarm” began, the Human Rights Campaign has issued responses, mainly defending itself.

I’ve always been curious as to how much influence blogs really have when it comes to shaping the debate on issues, so it will certainly be interesting to see how the “blog swarm” over Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell shapes that debate.


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8 thoughts on “Can blogs influence the DADT debate?

  1. Yeah…except there shouldn’t even be a debate. It shouldn’t be about what the majority thinks or wants or feels comfortable with…etc. People should not have to hide who they are to serve their country. People should not have to hide who they are to appease the bigots…and more specifically the “christian” bigots. If there are people who want to believe in a religion more power to them…but they need to stop forcing that belief on the rest of society. If they want to believe their God does not accept homosexuals that is on them…but again…they need to stop forcing that belief on the rest of society. We are all equal and there shouldn’t even be a need for a debate.

    1. Anon, I’ll agree that there shouldn’t even be a debate. We should be striving for equality for all, not just equality for the folks we agree with.

    2. I know Anon can never pass up a chance to take a swipe at Christianity or religion. While I happen to agree with you on DADT, there should always be a healthy debate on issues. This superiority complex is typical liberal attitude about issues that are so obvious they should not even be debated or discussed. Are you not forcing your beliefs on the rest of society in many ways by the issues you advocate?

      1. forgot…who are the ones with the “superiority complex”? The people who misuse religion to degrade others and elevate themselves above others OR the people who feel everyone is equal in their world and should be treated accordingly?

          1. Well it’s part of a larger liberal superiority in that some issues are just so obvious that debate is unnecessary, because the opposing argument is so dimwitted or backward. Government health care for all? “Just pass it, it’s the only moral thing to do, how can you debate that.” High speed rail? “Well obviously people would use this if they had the option, stop talking and let’s do it.”

            What if I said all people should be treated equal by being taxed at the same rate or same amount and that it was so obviously fair, so why debate it? Animal rights advocates could say eating meat is wrong and it is beyond debate. Every person who has an issue that matters to them could say something is beyond debate.

            1. You can’t seriously believe what you wrote. Don’t you think there is a huge difference between debating issues like taxes and debating whether all people should be treated equally under the law?

              Christians and religious people do not have to agree with homosexuality if they do not want to…but why should they be able to (based on their religious belief which isn’t fact) force other Americans to accept how they feel about homosexuality?

              And BTW…you didn’t answer my question.

  2. It’s also worth noting that the Palm Center and Servicemembers Legal Defense Network have both joined the blogswarm and they are the two LGBT orgs dedicated to repealing DADT – and they work closely with HRC.

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