Monday, January 31, 2011

State Of The Civil Union

Wow there's a lot of civil unionizing going on!.. Today, the governor of Illinois signed The Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Unions Act bringing many of the protections and responsibilities of marriage....minus the the citizens of Illinois. In similar news Hawaii advances one step closer to passing it's own civil protections with its own civil union bill passing the senate stop, the state House of Representatives. Cross your fingers.... Hawaii has been fighting this fight for a long time and it would be nice to see something finally happen there. AND...if that's not enough for you..Colorado is beginning it's own push for same-sex civil unions.

Marriage has been such a major battleground for gay rights...and sometimes the discussion finds it's way to the superiority of marriage over Civil Unions and Domestic Partnerships in terms of protections and perceptions of equality. And when people claim that should be happy with civil unions, I will be one of the first to hall out the separate but unequal analogies. But that's only because I forget how spoiled I am. I forget what it was like to not even have the protections of domestic partnership. Though I do remember how I held my relationship as a marriage in my heart and no ones opinions or pieces of paper could tell me different.

Then one day...after a night out with Jay in the city, we were having breakfast in a Denny's when he handed me a card with his proposal in it and I cried like a baby....right in the middle of the restaurant. It felt so incredible  to go to the court house and sign our Domestic Partnership papers, even though  all we had was just a paper to ceremony, no guests, no wedding gifts, and no reception...but at the time it was all we had, and it felt for all the world like a fairy tale wedding in Westminster cathedral. That first step became a building block to so much I have the honor of calling Jay my husband and that is something I never thought I would see in my lifetime.

 Congrats to the good folks of Illinois...may your unions be truly joyous affairs filled with all the promise of a lifetime of love. And Hawaii....I am keeping you in my thoughts. Your day is coming any minute now. And Colorado...kudos to you. We all hope to be celebrating your unions some day soon as well. And may these first happy unions be the beginning of so much more joy to come for you all.

Bryan and Jay

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

HRC Wants To Put Our Trans Brothers and Sisters "Back To Work"

Times are tough for everybody right now. I don't think I know a single person that hasn't been negatively effected by the economy, to the point were there really is no such thing as a disposable income anymore. Work has become a precious commodity these days and very hard to find. We have had many gay friends lose jobs to the poor economy only to struggle for months to find new work...some are still looking months after they have been let go. There's no doubt that times are tough..and they don't care if you are gay. straight, bisexual, or transgendered.

However....having had my eyes opened to transgendered struggles over the last two years, I know how hard it can be for Trans people to navigate many of the things we take for granted, without suffering massive amounts of fear, ignorance, and discrimination....and job hunting has got to be tough even in a good economy. was with great surprise that I read on Pam's House Blend  that HRC is launching a program to give job training and job finding assistance to transgendered people....What? The same HRC that has suffered so much criticism for being completely ineffective yes men?...yup, the very same...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Life Under The Microscope

Is being a gay parents different from being heterosexual parents? Well, for the most part...while we all face most of the same challenges, their are some additional challenges to being a gay parent. One of those challenges seems to be that the world is watching your family to see what happens. It doesn't matter how many same-sex parents have come before you, the rest of the world still looks at same-sex couple raising children as some strange and never before seen thing. In my opinion there is more pressure on same-sex families to measure up to societies guidelines. Our fear is that any mistakes or inadequacies in our parenting will become reflective of our our being gay persons instead of instead of human beings with all too human limitations.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Iranian Gay Men To Be Stoned Tomorrow

I wish I had better news to share.....Two men jailed for having sex and filming it on a cell phone are due for stoning tomorrow in Iran. Given my timezone(pac) it will probably happen sometime tonight. I know I can't stop it...probably none of us can, but neither can I let it slide by like it isn't happening.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

What Makes A Marriage?

Is it a piece of paper?...A word?... Is it just the time you've been together?...I've been thinking about this a lot today...

Rewind back in time to last night...Jay and I were watching a gay themed movie recommended to us by a friend. The movie was awful, a crime against humanity in much so that I will not mention it's name for fear you will feel compelled to rent it and see just how bad it was. Needless to say, it was one of those movies designed more to create multiple opportunities to show off the actors butts than to create any shred of a believable plot. The movie, which hails from China, suggests that all women are merely accessories to men, that any man can be seduced into becoming gay, that all gay men have a secret heterosexual side,...and my least favorite love ends in tragedy. After the movie was over, Jay and I were completely dumbfounded  and angry that we had wasted the time watching it. However, it did lead us to talk...about what we find sexy, fantasy, and attraction...and it was here that the second most horrible gay film of all time turned a bad night worse...

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Giving Delaware A Hand..

Hello everone,
I know that the months after Christmas can be tough, as we try to get out finances back in order but I promised to keep you updated on the state of marriage equality in Delaware and they are asking for our help. I understand times are tough so even if you can't donate, please consider sharing this video and spreading the word.

Official Delaware Right To Marry site:

Donate at:

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Arizona Shooting and The Politics of Revolution

The victim of attempted assassination, Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords clings to life in an Arizona Hospital. Nine other people are dead including a nine year old girl, Christina Taylor Greene...

And we are all looking for meaning...

What drives another human being to commit a crime like this? The assailant, Jared Loughner's mental illness has been given as the likely cause and anyone who has seen his YouTube channel would be hard pressed to disagree. Jared seemed to have the idea that all politicians where part of a giant scheme to control the populace through certain concepts that he obsessed, the meaninglessness of words and currency. While I am still unsure what he thought of as "currency" it was clear that he had gone down the rabbit whole to the point of paranoia.

Yet, all that was on anybodies lips the day after was Sarah Palin's political action know, the one covered in cross hairs?...the same map in which one of those cross hairs includes Gabrielle Giffords name and district, prompting speculation that her map may have provided Loughner...and any one else with an itchy trigger finger...a handy hit list. Viewing Loughners video is chilling but one thing it doesn't include are specific names or political parties. He seemed to have a problem with the entire system.

Whether the map and Loughners actions are connected have become almost irrelevant at this point as one of the effects of this horrible event is that we are talking about the negatives of engaging in "culture war". Sometimes its not just a way of words...sometimes it's real bullets....and who owns the blame?

Monday, January 10, 2011

New LGBT History Museum...Epic Win?

San Francisco has been the site of many important leaps forward in LGBT history. It was home to one of the most famous  gay enclaves in modern history, The Castro district. Many prominent gay rights activists come out of San Francisco including Harvey Milk, Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, as well as many other pioneers of gay rights. Harvey Milk work in the gay community, his murder, and the White Night Riots that followed, helped launch an era in which gays and lesbians no longer accepted the violence and discrimination of society...and fought back. It was in San Francisco that mayor Gavin Newsom instructed the city clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbians, sparking the Prop 8 legal battle still raging today. The city by the bay has long history of being a gay haven and flash point for gay politics...there's alot of history here.

That's why my curiosity was piqued when I heard about a new GLBT history museum to be opened near the Castro. The museum is an undertaking of the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco and had been in the works for a long time. From what I can gather from their website, this is a labor of love by local community members who have collected decades of materials from those who lived those events. much awesome! But not having seen it yet I am left with a few questions...

Friday, January 7, 2011

Gotta Have Faith

No gotta..the army says so...

A recent report from Truthout and courtesy Pam's house Blend highlights an experimental military mental-health fitness initiative that goes by the name "Comprehensive Soldier Fitness". The Program, which is aimed at lowering suicide rates and Post-Traumatic Stress issues in soldiers consists of a Pair of online tests meant to measure a soldier psychological resiliency in five areas: Physical, Emotional, Family, Social, and...Spiritual. However, if a soldier scores low in  any category, they get assigned to "remedial counseling in a classroom or online setting". So if you don't live up to the tests standards of will be taught how to believe so you don't fall apart after experiencing the bloody realities of war.

Understandably, this has caused a backlash from soldiers and civil rights groups who point out that this program "unconstitutionally requires enlistees to believe in God or a "higher power" in order to be deemed "spiritually fit" to serve in the Army.". One of the programs initial designers was a psychologist who helped design the Bush Administrations torture program....if that tells you anything about the intent of the people behind this....and the obvious double standard of forcing something onto a group of people that is not inherent to them smacks of the arguments used against repealing Don't Ask Don't Tell.

Monday, January 3, 2011

New Hampshire In The Crosshairs...Again

When will  marriage equality be a final passage to full and equal treatment and stop being a revolving door? of giveth and taketh away? long as certain conservatives and fundamentalists continue to have the ability to submit our rights and relationships to a vote.

 In the first assault on the rights of gays and lesbians in 2011, conservatives are mounting a repeal effort of New Hampshire's recently enacted marriage equality bill. That's right...the ink is barely dry on the marriage certificates of gay and lesbian New Hampshire newlyweds and already their unions are in danger.....Can you believe this cr*p?!  Yes, I guess we can. After all this will be attempt number two in the state of New Hampshire....only this time the game has changed and our attention is called for.