n. infantile pattern of suckle-swallow movement in which the tongue is placed between incisor teeth or between alveolar ridges during initial stage of swallowing (if persistent can lead to various dental abnormalities) v. [content removed due to Bush campaign to clean up the internet] n. act of nyah-nyah v. pursuing with relentless abandon the need to masticate and thrust the world into every bodily incarnation in order to transform it, via the act of salivation, into nutritive agency

Thursday, November 06, 2008

if you aren't in it for the long haul, then tough shit

After spending Tuesday night jumping up and down, dog wrestling, whooping, drunk dialing, and in general, feeling so happy I can't even express it, it's surely understandable how the next day, when I read about all the anti-gay shit that went down this election, I felt punched in the gut, hog-tied, and gagged with a rag stuffed in every orifice.

To be frank, I felt like my part in the recent election had been erased, not because I'm pro-marriage for queers, but simply because I'm queer. What happened was not really a "Hey, Marriage is Great" kinda message, but rather a "We hate the fuck out of you, so much that we want to explicitly and constitutionally let you know we don't consider you a member of our community" kinda message. We voted for Obama, some of us, but all of us are disgusted by you. You know, in Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, and uh, California.

And hey, I'm not really pro-marriage. As far as I can figure it, it's a stupid contractual arrangement, at least in its relation to government. Most older wiser folks I've known who've dabbled with marriage have since divorced to their anguish, and eventually decided that a nebulous will-defined relationship works at least as well. I think marriage as it stands is out-dated or maybe bogus, tends to create floating islands bereft of community out of what used to be dynamic individuals, and would best be replaced by government-acknowledged tax "families," a system that would hypothetically reward community however it forms, whether it be male-female and kiddos, or aunt and nephew, or friend and friend, or Ellen & Portia, or person and child. Seriously, a whole system that gives tax breaks and forms legal corridors specifically for sanctioned sex is beyond me.

What I can nevertheless get behind is that whatever system is in place, it should be in place for all those who want to participate in it. Any society that denies equality for part of its population is a society that clearly does not promote Justice. And that gets to its Integrity.

Which is why I think this whole "tolerance" stuff is a stupid political message for gay-America to promote. It's not about tolerance because we're not talking about who smiles at whom, who loves and adores whom, who condones what behavior, who likes each other or gives jobs, friendship, or friendly shakes of the hand to each other; we're talking about who gets to participate in equal rights relative to the Constitution.

This is a legal issue, not a legislative one. So to hell with all these namby-pampy tolerance movements.

I mean, what would've happened if the court systems had never eventually (and I will get around to that "eventually") stepped in, relative to black and female rights, to say: This is What the Constitution Means. What if instead they had voted in a popular election about whether to amend, as Arizona did with its state constitution, the Bill of Rights so that it clearly states, as per the 'initial intention' of our forefathers:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all white men not women are created equal, that they are endowed by their ChristianCreator with certain inalienable Rights except in times of crisis, that among these, are Life the fetus before the female, Liberty to pursue specific populous-sanctioned actions, and the pursuit of Happiness as long as 'happiness' is defined by what a semi-majority subgroup considers legitimate?
Truth be told, I spent those two gut-punched hours feeling bitter about the African-American and Hispanic populace who voted to promote the first black man into office, but then overwhelmingly (according to the stats, much more overwhelmingly than the white population) voted to deny others the rights to participate in other, daily life 'Happinesses'. After so many years of struggling for their own equality.

But then I decided three things:

1) Barack Obama is an amazing man. I have a right, queer or not, to celebrate my participation in his election. I have cause to be happy, and to dwell in that happiness.

2) If the election coverage showed me little else, it was that African-Americans were celebrating a result that was clearly due to their years of struggle and agitation and participation and protest. The queer movement has much to admire and follow, and perhaps many years of alternating patience, articulation and protest before hoping to achieve equality. I'd choke on a chicken-bone if ever in my lifetime a queer were elected president, so perhaps the same rights as other folks is not so little a goal. Everything takes time, everything faces backlash, and perhaps a total wipe of the chalkboard was too much to hope for on any one day. Eventually takes time.

3) It's dangerous to blame minorities for switching from the oppressed to the oppressors (as J Stewart put it tonight), even if the stats showed their participation in this denial. Everyone had their hands in the pot, and for clearly different reasons.

Anyhow. I don't want to dwell too much; it's sad, really sad. But we still made a step forward together, all of us.
"We are not a red America or a blue America, a black America or white America, a gay America, or a straight America, we are the United States of America."

President-Elect Obama
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