Indiana’s Historic Moment

A recent post over at the Indiana Equality blog was enough of a kick in the pants to remind me to post about some recent events.

If you know me, you know how jazzed I am about Barack Obama. The first time I ever heard about Barack the “Indianapolis” Colts still hadn’t ever won a Super Bowl. It was October 17th 2006, which just so happened to be my 39th birthday. Barack had been to Indiana the previous day to attend a fundraiser for Baron Hill, Joe Donnelly, and Brad Ellsworth (who at the time were three Congressional candidate hopefuls). At the time Jim Shella said:

“He then pointed out that the Colts have been “eeking out victories” while the Bears have been winning blowouts. Ever the politician, he said he’s looking forward to a Bears/Colts Super Bowl matchup.” (At the time of that fundraiser the Colts were 5-0, and in fact did go on that year to face the Chicago Bears in the Super Bowl)

When Barack announced in January of 2007 he was running for president of the United States of America, I started to research him relentlessly. The more I learned about him, the more I liked him. My fire for Obama grew steadily over the months, but the turning point for me was the HRC/Logo Presidential Forum.

I knew I had to get involved with the campaign, I just wasn’t sure how. In November I wrote: Since that time I’ve brought together the people (that would eventually become) the members of the Obama transgender subcommittee, I’ve hosted an Obama dinner, and I was the Pride coordinator for Indiana. But on Saturday June 21st, 2008, one of the most historic events of my life took place. I was chosen as the first ever transgender delegate from the state of Indiana. This wasn’t a haphazard event. I had the support of the Indiana Stonewall Democrats, the Barack Obama campaign, and the Indiana Democratic Party.

During the Convention I was given a copy of the Indiana Democratic Party Platform. What I read inspired me to take this picture at the time:

This was taken from the platform section titled “Including Every Hoosier.” It says:

“The Indiana Democratic Party is proud of our long-standing commitment to and support for civil rights and equality. Our 2008 ticket makes history, creating the opportunity for the first African-American president and the first female governor. As the party of the people, we strongly oppose restriction of opportunity to Hoosiers based on their race, religion, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or economic background.”

I’ve never been prouder of the Indiana Democratic Party, the GLBT community, and the state. It’s a year of firsts for Indiana and for the country, and I feel blessed to take part in one of the most historic elections in my lifetime.

Marti Abernathey is the founder of the Transadvocate and the previous managing editor. Abernathey has worn many different hats, including that of podcaster, activist, and radiologic technologist. She's been a part of various internet radio ventures such as TSR Live!, The T-Party, and The Radical Trannies, TransFM, and Sodium Pentathol Sunday. As an advocate she's previously been involved with the Indiana Transgender Rights Advocacy Alliance, Rock Indiana Campaign for Equality, and the National Transgender Advocacy Coalition. She's taken vital roles as a grass roots community organizer in The Indianapolis Tax Day Protest (2003), The Indy Pride HRC Protest (2004), Transgender Day of Remembrance (2004), Indiana's Witch Hunt (2005), and the Rally At The Statehouse (the largest ever GLBT protest in Indiana - 3/2005). In 2008 she was a delegate from Indiana to the Democratic National Convention and a member of Barack Obama's LGBT Steering and Policy Committee. Abernathey currently hosts the Youtube Channel "The T-Party with Marti Abernathey."