Mary Frances Berry, former chairwoman of the Commission on Civil Rights, asks the question today in her New York Times op-ed, Gay But Equal?
Berry spells out the many inequalities LGBT people in America face, from housing, employment, and legal benefits, to the military's "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policies, to adoption and relationship recognition that heterosexual people take for granted.
But she goes one step further. She calls on Obama and his new administration to take a proactive step in addressing LGBT civil rights:
"The creation of a new, independent human and civil rights commission could help us determine our next steps in the pursuit of freedom and justice in our society. A number of explosive issues like immigration reform await such a commission, but recommendations for resolving the controversies over the rights of gays, lesbians and transgendered people should be its first order of business."
Click here to read her complete op-ed in The New York Times.