JANUARY 12, 2010 12:39PM

Going Green and supporting gay rights, all at once

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In light of the disappointment and impatience with which the American LGBT community is currently dealing thanks to the inaction of the ruling Democrats on gay issues, with some activists even pledging allegiance to "Don't Ask, Don't Give," the donor boycott of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), perhaps now is a great time to throw some support into saving the planet and acquiring gay rights, all at the same time. A cursory look around the world reveals some shining examples of how Green parties are fighting for civil equality.

In New Zealand, Green List MP Kevin Hague has been a long time gay rights activist and is currently pushing the bill for gay adoption in the country.

It was the Green Party in Australia that introduced the Marriage Equality Amendment Bill 2009, which would grant Australian same-sex couples equal marriage rights and is currently being reviewed by the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee. The bill seeks to remove all discrimination based on sexuality and gender identity from the Marriage Act 1961.

The Green Party in Austria was instrumental in pressuring the government to make good on its promise to enact a new law on same-sex partnerships after years of lobbying.

Together with the Left Bloc, the Green Party of Portugal continues to push for gay adoption, saying that "by not allowing gay and lesbian couples to adopt, the government was effectively making them second-class citizens."

In Ireland, the manifesto of the Green Party explicitly refers to proposing a bill that would make all terms connected to marriage gender neutral, thus permitting same-sex marriage.

And, closer to home, American Green politician Ralph Nader came out in support of gay rights in his 2008 presidential campaign as an independent candidate.

These are just some examples of Green/Gay alliances that could prove to be informative for the next era of American activists and politicians tired of both the absurd conservatism of the Republican Party and the broken promises of the Democratic Party.

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