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Old 11-07-2008, 10:25 AM   #941
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some interesting thoughts:


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I never joined the first two parts of the gay movement, neither around Stonewall nor AIDS. I was too young for Stonewall and too closeted for AIDS. I watched friends and acquaintances organize, fight and often win, friends such as Howard Bragman (now a powerful publicist), Jeremy Bernard (now a key aide on the Obama team) and Torie Osborn (who created the bridge between lesbians and gay men in building the LA Gay and Lesbian Center in the 1980s).

Having worked pretty hard on the No on 8 side via Courage Campaign, I decided to forego the rally in West Hollywood tonight where the self-appointed leaders of the (failed) campaign would do what they do. I'd heard it all. But when a friend called me to say a large group was marching down Sunset Boulevard near my house toward the CNN building, I ran to join them. They made me feel alive and reconnected to a movement that had disappeared over the last fifteen years.

At first, we were maybe two thousand, walking in rag-tag down one of the busiest streets in the country, right through Hollywood. My friends Zach Shepard and Geoffrey Murry, two young lawyers who have never led a protest in their lives, had led this group away from the official speeches in West Hollywood, speeches Zach said he was bored of hearing. Zach was tired of being "talked to." He and his friends wanted to do something, to be part of something.

I'm not so used to these spontaneous things myself. In my twenties, I was a VP at Occidental Petroleum. We did not think spontaneous marches were such a good idea because they were usually spontaneously marching at us. But the energy tonight was infectious, a different sort of power from that exultant joy I experienced last night at the huge Century City party for Obama. This electricity was from the Zachs and the Geoffreys who had raised over $75,000 from small donors for the No on 8 campaign, but were never allowed to campaign. As Zach said, " I felt like a cog. Some guy called me after I volunteered, but he could not even tell me when my shift was." Zach never found out.

John Cloud wrote an interesting story in Time Magazine last week about the new gay mafia that is behind lots of the great changes that are going on in American politics. They are smart people who put up hundreds of millions of dollars to change politics and society from the bottom up, working county by county and state by state for equality for gay people. One of the gatekeepers for one of the rich donors is quoted as saying, "where is the outrage?" I think he means where is the outrage against being kept as second class citizens, wondering why the "movement" sits back and waits for billionaires to write checks. But can there be outrage when a movement becomes a corporation? When the largest LGBT organizations look like, are staffed by former executives of and are funded by huge corporations and huge donors, where is the movement?

It's not at black tie dinners. It's not at VIP receptions. It's not on the red carpet. Movements are visceral and popular, often born of outrage and even anger, like that which eventually made Barack Obama president-elect.


The campaign for No on 8 may not be over. Maybe, just maybe, more votes will be counted and we'll win. But in the likelihood that we don't, Zach and Geoffrey and the thousands of people who left a park in West Hollywood tonight tired of speeches, ready to work, ready to build and ready to lead, will be our way to victory.

The Mormon Church and its subsidiary allies brilliantly pumped in money and lies into a cynical campaign to strip rights from people via constitutional amendment. They ran a much better campaign than the No side. And they used their base to win. I talked with two candidates for office here in California today who said they lost because they were on our side. They saw the Mormon Church at work. They saw organizing of Latino and African American households. They saw passion and organization. Where were we?

Next time--and there will be a next time--we must believe in ourselves. That's one of the key messages of the Obama victory. Believe in the people. Empower the people. If you give them orders and you make them cogs, they'll write some checks, but they'll stay home. On election day, it felt good to wave at the people on the street holding No on 8 signs. But I saw no one, not one person, waving a Yes on Obama sign. Why? Because the Obama campaign focused like a laser beam on using California money and labor to win in other states. They had California in the bag. They did not waste people's time doing "visibility" in California.

Shocking as it may seem, we had West Hollywood in the bag. Imagine the thousands and thousands of people who could have called, spoken to five friends, walked and persuaded for the past four months. Imgaine what might have happened had we truly engaged our wonderful friends in the labor movement, such as Sal Rosselli. And then, if we had lost, we'd have a real movement. Now we have to build one from Zach and Geoffrey up. Maybe it's all for the best. As Barack Obama has shown, real victories do not come easy, but they do come from movements.


aside from the good advice above, i predict that the Obama campaign will be studied for decades. it is now the textbook for how one starts a movement.

the main point is right: why organize in WeHo, South Boston, the West Village, Dupont Circle, Boystown, Buckhead, the Castro? we need to battle in less friendly areas. the gays are still ghettoed, to a large extent, and most of us live in worlds where no one bats an eyelash if we hold hands with our partners while walking down the street. we need to get out of this cocoon, walk into churches, and tell them exactly why we're equal to them.
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Old 11-07-2008, 10:27 AM   #942
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If it offends you to be called a bigot, then stop trying to legislate your bigoted opinions.

You know if you made anti-semitic comments here, nobody would blame the people calling you an anti-semite.
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Old 11-07-2008, 10:49 AM   #943
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Or they could use them when appropriate, such as now.

Indy, you're a bigot.
And let's not forget a raging racist because I voted against Sen. Obama.
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Old 11-07-2008, 10:55 AM   #944
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And let's not forget a raging racist because I voted against Sen. Obama.
If you voted against him based solely on color, you would be.

Is that what you did ?
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:04 AM   #945
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If it offends you to be called a bigot, then stop trying to legislate your bigoted opinions.

You know if you made anti-semitic comments here, nobody would blame the people calling you an anti-semite.
Think of me as a same-sex marriage skeptic. Oh wait, silly me, liberal orthodoxy isn't subject to debate.
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:07 AM   #946
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Think of me as a same-sex marriage skeptic.
Sounds better than bigot, but that's just, to paraphrase another bigot, "putting lipstick on a pig"
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:14 AM   #947
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Originally Posted by elevated_u2_fan View Post
It boggles my mind that the founding principle of America is "All Men Are Created Equal"

I guess it only applies to RICH white straight men between 35 and 60...
fix'd


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Sounds better than bigot, but that's just, to paraphrase another bigot, "putting lipstick on a pig"
Oh, that's a Hockey Pig.
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:14 AM   #948
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Quote:
Originally Posted by INDY500 View Post
Think of me as a same-sex marriage skeptic. Oh wait, silly me, liberal orthodoxy isn't subject to debate.


maybe you'd be better served if you didn't imagine a (silly) counterargument to whatever thought you're going to put forward. it would make you come across as much less defensive and do much to quell the suspicion that your "skepticism" is rooted in bigotry.

you're very defensive in the above post.
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:15 AM   #949
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Originally Posted by INDY500 View Post
Think of me as a same-sex marriage skeptic. Oh wait, silly me, liberal orthodoxy isn't subject to debate.
What does that even mean? A skeptic? Come on.
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:26 AM   #950
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Nope. Still incorrect. "wrote" and "rote" are two different words with two different origins.

Try again.
Wrote and rote are homophones.

Maybe you hate homophones. Maybe you fear them.

Martha, you are a homophonephobe.

How do you sleep at knight?
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:35 AM   #951
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INDY, you have stated that you are for civil unions, but against same-sex marriage.

i can understand, from your point of view, that the rights of gay couples might well be addressed by a civil union (assuming that you support this on both the state and the federal level and that the rights bestowed upon a civil union are the exact same as those upon a marriage ... is that correct?), and that two men in their 40s who have no plans to have children and simply love each other and would like to grow old together and have meaningful protections are adequately served by said civil union. or that two lesbians, perhaps with 2-3 kids, would be just as protected as a straight couple with 2-3 kids who are married.

is this correct?
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Old 11-07-2008, 11:41 AM   #952
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Originally Posted by INDY500 View Post
Wrote and rote are homophones.

Maybe you hate homophones. Maybe you fear them.

Martha, you are a homophonephobe.

How do you sleep at knight?
OK Indy, you got me. While I disagree with your opinion, I like a little giggle.
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Old 11-07-2008, 12:16 PM   #953
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Originally Posted by Irvine511 View Post
the main point is right: why organize in WeHo, South Boston, the West Village, Dupont Circle, Boystown, Buckhead, the Castro? we need to battle in less friendly areas. the gays are still ghettoed, to a large extent, and most of us live in worlds where no one bats an eyelash if we hold hands with our partners while walking down the street. we need to get out of this cocoon, walk into churches, and tell them exactly why we're equal to them.

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Old 11-07-2008, 12:24 PM   #954
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is this correct?
In a nutshell yes. With a few situational caveats perhaps.

Let me ask you. What do you think was more effective to opening the country's eyes to the suffering of AIDS in the gay community. ACT-UP, church invasions and all those other in-your-face tactics or the quite message of the AIDS Quilt?
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Old 11-07-2008, 12:30 PM   #955
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Solano County was the only Bay Area county to vote yes on 8.

Sorry to go back so many pages! But it is true that Solano voted yes, which makes the fact that they will continue to marry people even better.

Irvine, when you were asking what straight people think, I don't know if I can help because living in the Bay Area everyone I talk to (even if I don't know them) is bummed about it passing. However, I did hear a clip on the radio where a guy said that he was against the proposition until he heard about school children being taught gay marriage and that changed his vote. I think it was the kid commercial that really got to the people who were on the fence. But Facebook has a petition to overturn the proposition so anyone who is a CA resident can sign it. Please do!
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Old 11-07-2008, 12:32 PM   #956
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Let me ask you. What do you think was more effective to opening the country's eyes to the suffering of AIDS in the gay community. ACT-UP, church invasions and all those other in-your-face tactics or the quite message of the AIDS Quilt?
I'm not sure it has anything to do with AIDS affecting the gay community. I think it has everything to do with American whites fearing that they'll get it from infected minorities. If this was exclusively a minority affliction--as evidenced by the callous attitudes of the Religious Right in the early 1980s--then I imagine that they'd object to AIDS treatments much the same way they object to the HPV/cervical cancer vaccination now.

"They deserve it."
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Old 11-07-2008, 12:33 PM   #957
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For God's sake, it's just a word! So homosexuals can have the same rights as straight married couples, only instead of calling it marriage, it's called a civil union. That will never make sense to me. It's the exact same thing, except that one word!

What if gays make like Hispanics and just say they're married when they're really not? Is that acceptable?






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Old 11-07-2008, 12:37 PM   #958
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For God's sake
Don't go bringing God into this!

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What if gays make like Hispanics and just say they're married when they're really not? Is that acceptable?
He's cheating
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Old 11-07-2008, 12:41 PM   #959
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In a nutshell yes. With a few situational caveats perhaps.

why, then, the need to maintain a distinction between a same-sex couple and an opposite-sex couple?

what are the essential differences between the two that necessitate a totally different category of relationship?

also, could an opposite-sex couple choose to get a civil union instead of a marriage?


Quote:
Let me ask you. What do you think was more effective to opening the country's eyes to the suffering of AIDS in the gay community. ACT-UP, church invasions and all those other in-your-face tactics or the quite message of the AIDS Quilt?


in the beginning of the AIDS crisis, there is no question that ACT-UP had it's place. the response to the AIDS crisis was one of the greatest feats of social activism and community organizing in the history of the United States. AIDS was deliberately ignored by the Reagan administration, and many felt as if the softer tactics of the GMHC were totally ineffective. remember, you have thousands of people dying, so it seems rather perverse to hold hands and sing when you're faced with mass death due to deliberate political inaction.

it was necessary, but thankfully the country grew away from that.

it has been discussed in here how the AIDS crisis did much for the advancement of gay rights. gays can easily "pass," as it were, and live lives where they can compartmentalize their relationships and not have to deal with actually being gay in a straight world. if you're sick and dying, it's hard to do that. but, more importantly, when you suddenly realize that your brother, your uncle, your cousin, your co-worker, are all sick and dying, it gets kind of hard to ignore them or blame them for their illness.

so both things are necessary. often, it's necessary to create a sense of crisis to draw attention to an issue, and what a group like ACT-UP does is mobilize and shock into action members of said community. but, ultimately, what wins is the simple, grassroots, humble organization and the talking, arguing, convincing, and demonstration of lives that aren't all that different from yours.

the animosity towards interracial couples dissipated in the 1980s and 1990s as it became more common and the general population saw the lived-in reality of being a black/white couple really wasn't all that different from their own reality. and they saw that mixed-race kids were just fine.

that's why equality is inevitable.
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Old 11-07-2008, 12:43 PM   #960
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However, I did hear a clip on the radio where a guy said that he was against the proposition until he heard about school children being taught gay marriage and that changed his vote. I think it was the kid commercial that really got to the people who were on the fence.

it does seem as if using children as a scare tactic was successful in this situation.

but why was it successful? why do people freak out when it comes to kids and gay people?

lots of gay people have kids. lots of teachers, coaches, etc., are gay.

i want to know -- what is it that freaks people out so much?
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