Obama Orders Hospital Visiting Rights for Gays

President Obama has asked the Department of Health and Human Services to establish a rule that would prevent hospitals from denying visitation privileges to gay and lesbian partners.

The president’s Thursday memo said, “There are few moments in our lives that call for greater compassion and companionship than when a loved one is admitted to the hospital. … Yet every day, all across America, patients are denied the kindnesses and caring of a loved one at their sides.”  Story HERE.

It’s pretty sad that there was even a need for this directive – the last thing the ill and dying need on top of the stress of illness is being kept apart from a loved one, yet it happens regularly – often when the biological family of the patient disagrees with the patient’s choice (read: gender) in mate.  That, of course is another hurdle altogether.

I’m glad to see this small, but concrete, step has been taken to comfort the sick.  In some cases, terminally ill patients have been unable to see their partners in their time of need – it’s heartbreaking, really.  And change is long overdue.

The ruling affects only gays and lesbians, so why is a small, vocal, contingent so upset with it?  No one is sending gays and lesbians to visit them in the hospital – the rule doesn’t order gay candystripers!  It is meant to provide some comfort to those in need.  It costs nothing in terms of tax dollars or any other funds.  Please, go protest something else more important – something that actually has anything at all to do with you, because your blatant demonstration of hate is repugnant, even to most moderate conservatives with this issue – it’s not going to win you any fans.

And to Mr. Obama, this is a good first step, but don’t let it be the last, ok?

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