Section: General News - Gays and lesbians in the United States have made considerable progress in recent years in their fight for the same legal rights as heterosexual Americans.
With a flick of his pen this week, U.S. President Barack Obama extended more job benefits to the partners of gay government employees than many had ever had before.
"Many of our government's hard-working and dedicated, patriotic public servants have long been denied basic rights that their colleagues enjoy, for one simple reason: The people they love are of the same sex," President Obama said.
Progress celebrated The president was not alone when he signed the memorandum. Frank Kameny, 84, a pioneer in the gay rights movement, was peering over his shoulder. It was a vastly different view from the one Kameny had in 1965, when he was picketing outside the White House to be treated just like everyone else.
"Here I was as a welcome guest, standing on one side of the president, while the vice president stood on the other …