Thursday, November 06, 2008

I think there's a movie named after what I'm about to do...

Well....maybe we should try being honest with ourselves.

There's a lot of anger directed toward the state of California right now (most of it coming from me, I admit), but the truth is, the people of the Golden State didn't do anything different from the rest of us who cast our votes for Barack Obama. Sure, he said he didn't think a constitutional amendment was "necessary" to support his position, but he made it quite clear that as a Christian, he believes that marriage could only exist between a man and a woman. He proposed glb (and probably some t) should get a separate set of laws, instead of giving us access to those that govern his marriage to his wife and his relationship with his children.

There were a lot of reasons--probably most of them good--to vote for Obama despite his denial of equal rights to members of the glbt community. Catherine suggested I think of the polar bears his energy plan might save, for instance (although there's an argument to be made that if we kept Palin tied up with business in Washington, D.C., she'd be too busy to go out and shoot more wolves from helicopters). So, yes, it's pretty easy to ignore, or at least to rationalize, the negatives of voting for Obama. The U.S. was a sinking ship, and a few people had to be thrown overboard to save it. Fine, I get that. But still and all...calling Californians bigots for doing exactly what we just did...that's a bit much. There really is some truth to that old saying about pointing fingers: you can point a finger at California, but don't forget there are three pointing back at you (unless you're that kid I grew up with who accidentally cut his finger off when we were still in grade school, he's only pointing two fingers at himself). Maybe we like our reasons for throwing our support behind someone who doesn't believe in equal marriage rights better than some of the reasons put forward by the pro Prop 8 campaign, but really....same difference.

I've got a lot of fury spilling out of me right now. Some of it is directed toward...well...the targets you'd expect, and some of it is directed toward targets that probably would surprise you. A lot of my anger is directed at myself, for once again voting for someone I don't believe in, a candidate obviously willing to extend fair treatment to everyone but me. Mixed in with that is anger at myself for being too selfish to take the hit--shouldn't I be noble enough to step off the boat before I'm thrown off, so others can survive, and even improve their position? Turns out I'm not that generous--who knew? I want to be one of those people jumping up and down with joy, I want to be happy for all those people for whom this was a real victory. But I'm not, I'm not even close. I can be happy about not having a McCain/Palin administration, but the rest....I don't think I'm ever going to be able to forget what it felt like to watch the President-Elect celebrating with his wife and family in front of all those cheering people on election night, effortlessly enjoying his position of heterosexual privilege, no matter how much good comes out of this administration in the next four years.

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