Wednesday, November 05, 2008

We Will Be Citizens

So I had this whole post plotted out about Prop 8 passing and how it was threatening to harsh my Obama buzz; how civil rights apparently aren't for everyone and how the hope of minority classes didn't extend down the ticket; how I'll probably never live to see myself reflected in the President of the United States the way so many people get to do right now.

But I'm glad I held off.

Not because the results changed -- I make it a rule not to hold out hope for provisional ballots. But I saw a friend proudly and defiantly display his wedding band on his Facebook page, and I read a fantastically on-point piece by Andrew Sullivan, and now I'm sitting down to Angels in America and taking a moment to remember that the world only spins forward.

Yes, it's frustrating and disheartening and infuriating, but it's not forever. There will be a tipping point, and when that happens, we won't, to appropriate Roommate Mark's keen insight, be able to stop that avalanche. If Obama's election, forty long years after the death of Martin Luther King, teaches us anything, it's that history takes time. It doesn't mean we wait passively, but it does mean we don't let the setbacks break us. The saddest thing about homophobes and bigots is that they're already on the wrong side of history. History's just not here quite yet.

And I swear to god I'm gonna post about finger puppets soon enough, because even I think Profound Joe can get a little tedious.


notanillusion said...

I fully recognize and respect your right to get married. Unless it's with one of my imaginary boyfriends, i.e. George Clooney, in which case some sort of custody arrangement might need to be made.

Hang in there, Joe, your mountaintop will come too!

Kris McN said...

You're right, Joe. In 2000 Californians passed Prop 22 (defining marriage as only between a man and woman) with 61% support. It looks like Prop 8 will pass with 52%. Nine point change in 8 years, so maybe in 3 years the majority of Californians will finally be on the right side of history? Cold comfort I know, but change is coming.

That Bootleg Guy said...

Hey, nice job of choking me up at work, Joe. Christ, in the last 24 hours I've been crying at the drop of a hat. Stupid emotions.

Knowing that my home state alternately put Obama over the top, while simultaneously holding down our gay and lesbian populace who rejoiced as loudly as I did upon his victory is tough to swallow.

I agree that America will eventually "get it". I just hope that we're not older than all those still-voting daughters of slaves whom we've been hearing about since yesterday when it happens.

sam said...

Just wanted to echo what kris said, but also point out that it's closer to a 20 point swing in the right direction - the margin in 2000 was 22 percent. This time it was too close to call for quite some time. Combined with the complete disorganization of the "no" folks and the massive mormon money pumped into the "yes" campaign, it really will be only a matter of time. And I think not that much time either.

Here in NY, I'm waiting for our new Democratic hegemony in state government to get on the ball ASAP.

Of course, as a straight, perpetually (intentionally) single spinster, I'm really waiting for them to pass a law prohibiting well-meaning but annoying family members from asking why I don't have a boyfriend. But that's the real pipe dream.

Anonymous said...

(50s announcer voice)
Have you considered.....Massachusetts? From the rolling Berkshire hills surrounding Tanglewood to the graffitti'd coffeeshops of Harvard Square, Massachusetts is filled with everything to comfort a liberal's heart, from pointy-headed professors, to lattes, arugula, and failed Democratic presidential candidates. Now with full marriage equality! Massachusetts: You knew it was blue, but you've got to come here and marry your boyfriend to experience how true blue joy can be. (/ 50s announcer voice ).

Someday, man, and I promise to help you and every other one of the good guys to work for it.

bstewart23 said...

I immediately went to Angels in America, too, Joe. It helped.

Joe Reid said...

Brett, I read your post on Angels too. Glad to know someone else is on the same wavelength.

Maria said...

Yeah, so, more tears. The passage of hate legislation makes me sad, and it makes me mad. But enough people smarter and more legislatively-inclined than I are on the case (literally) that I can believe it won't last.

The fact that you, Mark, and so many others can maintain your hope-filled perspective in the face of ignorance and hate is truly inspiring, Joe. As some wise folks once said, this is not over.

jessica said...

I'm filled with hope for a lot of things these days, and Obama has inspired that in me. So while we might not have made everything right, we're getting there. Next time, Joe.

dan mac said...

Women and gays are in a lot of trouble right now. It's as if the bigots are redirecting all the discriminatory energy they can no longer acceptably point to racial minorities to you all. We had a big fight to win on Tuesday, and now that we have, I'm hoping liberals will turn around and realize how much ground we've been losing on this front and start taking it back. We simply can't tolerate second class citizen status for anyone.

Slow clap to Anonymous and the Massachusetts Public Service Announcement. Did you know? The New England states now don't have a single Republican in the House of Representatives.

Joe Reid said...

Yes, I believe they all realized their constituencies were not part of "Real America," so they just abandoned their posts. And moved to Wasilla.

jessica said...

Good riddance. :P

JennB said...

Melissa Etheridge has the right idea: "I am taking that to mean I do not have to pay my state taxes because I am not a full citizen. I mean that would just be wrong, to make someone pay taxes and not give them the same rights."

David said...

I just watched ANGELS on Logo (must be my 10th time) and heard that last speech and googled it. Up came this blog. Wow!
I'm the creator of an event on FACEBOOK called a DAY WITHOUT GAYS, a boycott/strike/call to petition against these anti-gay ballots, DOMA and the bigots. I made the movie WEDDING WARS based on the same idea. I started the first FREEDOM TO MARRY march in 1994. My late partner had commitment ceremonies in 1990 (2 years before he died) and the wedding was memorialized in two books on the subject.

We have 200,000 people signed up for the event.
And 14,000 posts filled with, yes, hate, but mostly love and passion and not tolerance, but love.

My heart is weary, tired, and full.
I miss him so much.
I love this film.
I can see history tipping in our favor.
We will be citizens.

Thank you. I needed a little e-serendipity just now.

Joe Reid said...

David, thanks so much for your comments. I'm glad you found your way to my blog -- hope you like it enough to stick around.