Updated, 10/12/09: I just added part 2 of Julian Bond’s speech. There’s still no posting on YouTube of Michelle Clunie’s speech. Also, welcome dear PUMAs from Stray Dogs that Amble In: Part IV — the dismissal of the hundreds of thousands of participants in yesterday’s National Equality March as the “Internet left fringe” by a White House official has angered the PUMAsphere, as well. See my comment on that below. And welcome dear readers from The Other McCain; Stacy observes — without gloating or rancor — “White House pimp-slaps gay-rights movement? That’s gonna leave a mark!” And read his wedding post, too [update, 10/13/09: the post has been deleted — it’s a shame because it had so many lovely photos of the bride] — Stacy is really just a big old girl when it comes to weddings and with his love of weddings and match-making, I do believe he may come around to supporting homosexual marriage equality just so he can make more matches and attend more weddings!
Updated, 10/12/09: I have added Michelle Clunie’s speech. And welcome, readers of dear Little Miss Attila — I share her love of the Jefferson Airplane.
Cynthia Nixon (actress, “Sex and the City”):
Julian Bond, part one:
Julian Bond, part two:
Lt. Dan Choi:
Lady GaGa — she totally won my heart with this speech:
Michelle Clunie (actress, “Queer as Folk”):
The cast of “Hair” singing “Let the Sunshine In”:
It was really a perfect October day — clear blue skies, temperature around 70 — to get together with my friend, Genius Artist DC, and a couple hundred thousand of, well, mostly strangers, to yell at the White House/President Obama and Capitol Building/Congress that the time to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and “don’t ask, don’t tell” (DADT) and pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) is right this instant.
I have embedded above the speakers I enjoyed the most: Julian Bond, Cynthia Nixon (“Sex in the City”), Lt. Dan Choi, Lady GaGa and the cast of “Hair” singing “Let the Sunshine In.” I’ll update this or post the video of Michelle Clunie (“Queer as Folk”) when it’s available.
I’m so glad I attended both the Tea Party march on 9/12 and the National Equality March on 10/11. What I know from living in both those worlds is that I need to figure out how to explain why the speakers at both events only make sense to people who already agree with them, which is not very helpful when your goal is to persuade. And I must learn how to fill in the gaps and be able to translate between Right-ese and Left-ese. Gays are one of the groups that is self-reliant enough and embraces goals that are idealistic enough — marriage, military service and working for a living instead of figuring out how to poach the fruits of someone else’s labor — to make them the natural constituency of conservatism. I covet them for the Right and I am trying to figure out how to attract them in droves. (The other two groups that would prosper more on the Right than the Left are women and Jews.)
Several of the speakers at the National Equality Rally, which followed the march, called Obama on his refusal to set deadlines for the repeal of DOMA and DADT and the passage of ENDA, but then they all completely blew their opportunity to empower their listeners by telling them to go back to their home districts and work there. Work is the LAST thing we should be doing! What the speakers should have done is told everyone there to go on strike immediately and completely stop working for the Democrats and donating to them until the legislation gays need for equality has been signed into law by Obama before the break for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Because I’m thinking that will help Obama shift his priorities.
Until today I thought that the obstacle to Obama’s delivering on his promises of equality for the lesbian and gay community was the strength of his allegiance to groups on the Left that hate gays: black preachers and their church members, illegal immigrants and Muslims.
Now I think that’s just a part of it. That’s because today I realized that the real reason Obama does not support any of the initiatives for homosexual equality must be that homosexual equality will not contribute to the destruction of the U.S. as a capitalist democratic republic. If it did, rest assured Obama would defy his gay-hating constituencies.
Genius Artist DC hadn’t planned on marching until we spoke yesterday because he is recovering from a leg infection and needed a wheelchair to participate. Well, I have a wheelchair and hadn’t wanted to go alone, so we attended together! After we arrived at the Capitol Building, I was able to wheel him to a fence where we had a clear view of the stage. When I turned around to look at the others there with us in the National Equality March, the marchers appeared to me to be mostly in their 20’s. The last big gay rights march in D.C. was in 2000, so this march introduced a new generation of lesbians and gays to political activism. (Margaret and I marched in the 1987 and 1993 Gay Pride marches in D.C., but missed the one in 2000; I didn’t have the strength then because my sleep apnea was so advanced and a trip like that would have involved lifting her at least 18 times.)
In contrast to the crowd at the National Equality March, the Tea Party marchers seemed to me to be mostly aged 40 to 70’s and included far more people who needed electric three-wheel scooters or some kind of wheelchair for their mobility. Don’t get me wrong — it’s impressive how many people with jobs ‘n’ stuff came to the Tea Party in D.C.
For both marches, the real benefit that the marchers take away is that they were among tens of thousands of like-minded people with the result that they will never feel alone again — a great brain and nervous system has formed, and a heart, and in today’s Internet age, with the capacity to communicate in so many ways — e-mail, blogs, videos, text messages, Facebook — their connections to one another will flourish mightily.
Update, 10/12/2009: John Aravosis reports that a White House official called us an “Internet Left fringe.” Yo, Obama! Way to piss off your base, dude! (H/T Memeorandum.) Here’s the video:
Update, 10/12/2009: Dear SYD from Stray Dogs that Amble In: Part IV links this post in her survey of PUMA bloggers who support the cause of homosexual equality and are angered that we were all dismissed yesterday by an official in the Obama White House as an “Internet left fringe.” Nobody knows how dirty Obama plays better than the PUMAsphere. I thought of them a few minutes ago when I was serving my father his lunch and saw the crawl on CNN announce the Hillary Clinton says she will not run for president again. Hah! thought I — Obama your god is a jealous god and thou shalt have no other gods before him! What a weakling! Why do you suppose Secretary Clinton would even bring this up? I figure Obama wants to keep the field clear of all the worthier Democratic contenders for the election in 2012, since right now is when prospective rivals should be examining precinct maps and brushing their hats to prepare them to be tossed into the ring.
Where was I? Oh, yes, do read SYD’s post — here is a delicious sample:
Yesterday, Not Your Sweetie covered the schadenfreude over at the Sullivan and Aravosis blogs. Cry us a river, boiz. Wah-wah. And next time you decide to choose a candie date, do a little research into his/her voting (and marching) history.
Many PUMAs reported on the Nobel Peace Prize farce over the weekend. As did the Log Cabin Republicans. Who can blame them? I have a few more things to say about that, myself. Probably tomorrow.
For today tho… I want to recognize the millions of Americans that are being discriminated against because of who they love. I think they deserve our support…. even if some of them did lose our respect during the 2008 Democratic Primaries.
Update, 10/13/2009: Welcome, readers from Villainous Company, you have quite the spirited discussion going on over there.