On Wednesday, a gallon of gasoline cost drivers more than $5.00 in 16 states plus Washington, D.C., but President Joe Biden’s Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm might not have seen that coming.
Granholm was too busy bashing conservative state legislatures, bragging about the number of Department of Energy (DOE) political appointees who identify as LGBTQ+, reading poetry, and hoisting the gay pride flag at a ceremony earlier this week.
On Monday, Granholm joined a handful of other DOE appointees to celebrate Pride Month and emphasize Biden’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
“Let’s be clear, the most important people in this organization are right here,” Granholm said regarding her colleagues standing at the microphone with her.
“The most important people” included the deputy director for the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, the director of Energy Pride (DOE’s employee resource group or LGBTQ+ employees and allies), the special assistant to the president for climate and science personnel, a nuclear engineer, and a staffer from D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office.
Granholm continued while quoting American poet Walt Whitman to celebrate LGBTQ+ pride.
“He writes, ‘I celebrate myself and sing myself. And what I assume, you shall assume. For every atom belonging to me, as good, belongs to you,'” Granholm said solemnly. “This flag that we will raise is a statement about our commitment to all who see themselves reflected in it; Our commitment to the LGBTQ+ communities’ safety — and safety is big right now — to celebrate their presence with us, for all of you who see yourself in that flag, and all who are working and may not be able to join us, we want you to feel its protection because that’s who we want to reflect. Not just protection but also of celebration of making sure that we are an agency that is inclusive.”
The energy secretary added that Americans need “all hands on deck” not for the sake of lowering energy prices, but for advancing progressive social ideas at the state and federal levels.
“We need all talent in order to thrive as an agency, but also as a planet,” the former Michigan governor said. “Unfortunately, as we have seen the right to privacy, and the right to safety is under attack. All you have to do is look at social media. All you have to do is see what’s happening in the halls of some state legislatures, where people, children are not allowed to be who they are, young adults are not allowed to be who they are, people feeling threatened by gun violence because of who they are or who they love.”
“There’s a human rights advocate, Ginetta Sagan said it best — and it’s a reflection of what has been said in the civil rights community, whose shoulders we stand on — which is, ‘Silence in the face of injustice is complicity with the oppressor,'” Granholm added before promising that “this administration will not be silent in the face of attacks on our fellow Americans.”
Granholm then rattled off a series of Biden initiatives that have nothing to do with energy, let alone high gas prices.
“And it’s why as one of his first acts in off office, President Biden, you will recall, signed an executive order committing this entire administration to equity, to civil rights, to inclusion. And that value has permeated actions throughout this administration — whether it’s reversing the ban on transgender participation in the military or fighting to make sure that in schools there is no sexual or gender discrimination because supporting the LGBTQ+ community is not just about acceptance, it’s not just about tolerance, it’s about action,” Granholm claimed. “And it’s about saying to all that we respect you and we celebrate you and we will fight for you.”
Granholm concluded her remarks by noting that her team would “make sure” to reflect the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion “in everything we do — personnel-wise, policy-wise. At all levels of this administration inside of DOE, we want to make sure that people can be their full selves at work and be celebrated for it,” while remarking how great it is that 20% of DOE political appointees are LGBTQ+ individuals.
Granholm’s remarks can be seen here:
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