Saturday, May 12, 2012

Presidential Evolutions

This week saw the incredible...and very long overdue...announcement that President Obama has completed his "evolution" on marriage equality and now officially and publicly supports it. Usually, when something this big happens, Jay and I like to make a YouTube video about it and rant/cheer depending on the event. However, this week didn't allow us to weigh in on the this is my opportunity to vent my thoughts and opinions on what has been dubbed an "historic" event. Yet...given the unprecedented nature of the Presidents announcement, no one can agree on whether or not this was good move on the Presidents part or a political blunder...and whats up with Joe Biden? Does his apology to the President signal that  Obama's support is less than sincere? Grab a cup-o-joe and lets talk about it.

(P.S....this is my first time blogging on the new MacBook Pro...I am a long time PC user and there is something of a learning curve for Mac products, so please bear with me.....)

When the news first hit the net there seemed to be a nearly unanimous expression of joy as if something long awaited had finally happened and I have to admit that I felt it too. Here was out President, who has long dodged the marriage equality question, come out for it in an unequivocal way. It was positive, definitive, and there was no way to spin it later on down the road into something less than flat out support for marriage equality. This was not the President Obama I am used to and I was shocked. I knew that he had drawn a line in the sand and clearly defined which side he stood on and that would then force everyone else to take their own sides. Which of couse they did...

Immediately, Fundies heads exploded. Here was the damning proof they wanted so badly that the President was out to destroy America and the family. Every single anti-gay voice immediately went into their shrill cries of "See! I told you so!". Rick Santorum stepped out of the wings to decry the Presidents well as Maggie Gallagher, and Ann Coulter. Tony Perkins was on CNN in less than twenty four hours stoking the flames of fear and paranoia through a crocodiles smile. And Mitt Romney, the presumed Republican Presidential nominee...and who is known for saying whatever is politically expedient...had his own condemnations to offer. With details of Romney's anti-gay bullying past emerging, and his promise to NOM to support a federal marriage ban, Romney was almost compelled to take the opposing stance to Obama's. It seemed tailor made for him and handed on a silver platter.

And yet it's the President who is being criticized for "politicizing marriage" if it wasn't before. I don't think there is a one of us reading this blog that hasn't known that gay rights has always been used as a  political football since the beginning, no matter the protections in question. Republicans long ago took a stance apposing gay rights of any kind....and Democrats may be more bark than bite...but they were traditionally thought of as being friendlier to the gay community. We have always been aware that any freedom....ANY freedom...we have one has been born of a political fight...even something as simple and humanitarian as funding research for HIV, a disease that affects the entire world. No group who has ever won their freedom has done it without having their lives subject to public debate and the machinations of the political machine. So for conservative politicians and pundits to claim that this sudden "politicizing" is a recent development is utterly false and I gotta believe that they are desperately hoping that no one will notice the decades in which they have been politicizing the lives of gay, bisexual, and transgendered people. Don't look behind the curtain...or you will see that the wizard is a sham. And while your at it...don't look in their closets either.

But beyond the hoopla, I wonder what the practical effects this announcement will have. As it's been called "historic" and "a game changer" will this translate into actually effects. That one is a little harder to answer being that I left my psychic powers in my other pants I can only guess. However, there was one immediate effect. Politics not being a profession filled with the courageous, few stood up for marriage equality fearing fall out on reelection. Yet, in the week since the announcement, other senators and congressman have made their own statements of support. Whether thats because they felt pressure to support the President and follow his lead or because they finally felt safe offering their personal viewpoints is impossible to tell....but that there are more and more voices in support is building a groundswell that we could not have purchased with all the money in the HRC. The statements by the President and other Washington notables remain only words....they have not yet translated into the passage of a trans inclusive ENDA, the abolishment of DOMA, or the end of the deportation of binational couples, but making such a stand does come at a cost to them and during the election we will see how that plays out.

This is one reason why even a large number of gay people are wishing the President had waited a little longer. Taking such a stance for marriage equality polarizes him and gives him a weakness that conservatives can exploit in their opinion. However, my opinion only....taking that view ignores how polarized and divided out polical process already is and how demonized President Obama has been for the last four years. No other president has had to put up the blatant racial comments that Obama has. For example the cartoon of him and Michelle Obama as terrorists in the white house complete with turbins and semiautomatic rifles....or the ones of Obama with a bone in his nose. No one has had to put up with the constant questions about the legitimacy of their citizenship and their birth certificate. And if that's not enough we can all remember the histeria surrounding the health care reform and accusations of government run "death camps". All of this is off the rails crazy without a shred of proof, but none of that matters to the conservatives and tea partiers who have done their damnedest to turn Obama into the greatest evil man has ever known. In my opinion...taking a positive stance on marriage equality isn't going to alter the way these gays already think about Obama and anyone in the middle never believed that B.S. anyway. President Obama has never been able to catch a them something real to cry about won't make that any worse. At least it gives him the benefit of begin seen standing up for the rights of other Americans when it's long overdue.

Which brings me to my final point....was the President's support sincere? First came Vice President Joe Bidens remarks that he personally supported Marriage equality, then came the White House dragging him in by the ear and calling him to the carpet. Biden then apologized for speaking out of turn and held another press conference reiterating that the Administration did not share in his remarks. THEN....not a week later the President makes his announcement and we all gasp and cheer until it comes out that his hand had been forced by Bidens initial statements. (whew!...that's a lot of he said she said)

So when would the President have given his full support to marriage equality if he hadn't been forced to? After reelections?...ever?  This is not the first time that the President has been under pressure to support an issue and not give in. During DADT he either stayed silent, dodged the issue entirely, or expressed tepid support until people began to chain themselves to his fence. Why does this issue differ in that he feels compelled to answer it? The most cynical side of me would say that it's to ask for campaign support, funding, and votes to get him reelected....the part of me that want's to believe better of people hopes that his account of changing his mind after talking to his daughters is true and that his change of heart is genuine. However.....

Regardless of how this came about, it's here and I think it's an incredible positive that we can and should be grateful well as use to the fullest. My hope is that the President's support will translate out into support from others who will follow his lead...and more movement on ENDA and DOMA in President Obama's second term. Perhaps the public can also come to a greater understanding of this as a civil rights issue and not a "special rights" one as conservatives would spin it and make it that much harder to reverse any changes that any later lawmakers could attempt. The Presidents statement was historic and for myself...I am grateful that he came out and said it. It does make a difference. But now it's time to roll up our sleeves and turn this fantastic development into action. We are still evolving.

Until next time dear readers.......


  1. excellent coverage on this issue. I really appreciate the input. Especially reading it all the way over here in Spain. Sometimes I feel a little disconnected from the politics of back home...but I do my best to stay up to speed. I agree with you that regardless of what motivated Obama to speak up and out, it is something to be grateful for.

  2. Umm.. I think he using this just to get more votes on his side.Everything he does is last minute, just in time for voting

  3. I'm going back to my normal name and dropping "the Original" add-on unless I see I need to use it again. For those of you who don't understand what I mean, we had two Dave's commenting in last week's thread.

    I personally don’t doubt Obama’s sincerity in saying he now supports marriage equality. As a lawyer, he’s fully aware that functionally all this is about is whether gays will ever be allowed to get a marriage license at City Hall. NO ONE, gays included, has ever advocated churches or individual pastors with religious objections being forced to perform marriages against their beliefs. Obama admitting his support now might, indeed, cause some accelerated movement on ENDA and ditching DOMA—but only in the near term. What I’m unsure of though is whether his admitting it now makes it more likely that we will have a Republican theocrat as our next President. With a Republican President, progress on ENDA and ditching DOMA could slow if not reverse course. Even worse, and this is where we could be in a heap of trouble, is when a religious fanatic for a President appoints Supreme Court justices ready to impose Christian Sharia law under the guise of strict construction of the Constitution. If we get any higher proportions of Republicans on the Court, our chance of getting “heightened scrutiny” recognized as the appropriate standard for reviewing sexual orientation discrimination cases will be lost for quite some time. Except for the 9th Circuit, the most liberal and most frequently reversed Circuit Court we have, using “rational basis” to test the constitutionality of gay discrimination often spells losses for us. If “heightened scrutiny” ever gets adopted, or sexual orientation becomes recognized as a “suspect class” for discrimination purposes, most of the laws against us which make our lives so difficult will necessarily collapse.

    1. I don't think it will hurt the President any. It's a net wash to be honest but I was happy that he has finally voiced what I have long suspected about his views on marriage equality. I just expected it AFTER the election.

      But here's my take. The Presidency is a bully pulpit and I believe President Obama is showing leadership more than he ever has in this latest statement.

      As I like to tell people, you can have Obama who has delivered on virtually every promise he made on the campaign trail, or Romney who will flip-flop like the wind.

  4. while i have never been a hard core supporter of obama(i have also not really been a detractor either-even if he did absolutely everything right hes going to be wrong which has borne out) and it is the presidential election, this does make me want to support him, somehow. i think obama is and has been keenly aware of how precarious his position and of the ramifications which is why he has acted to do things as he has. it is, i think, very smart on his part to do things as he has. if he merely issued an executive order, which is in his power, then the next person in office could simply undo it. obama is making his successor have to work to undo what he has done and it is already known that the 'gay issues' are going to change-in our favor, it is simply a matter of time (not to assume anything is guaranteed but..) and hell i will vote for president just to try and say no to romney or any of that ilk. yes obama wants more votes, that is given, but i think that he is timing his statement with purpose. yes polarizing himself can be bad but it has already forced his opponents to do the same, more so than they already were.

  5. I felt a wave of joy seeing our president-the leader of the free world-standing up for our rights. We have NEVER seen this in our history.
    At the same time we saw Mitt Romney walk back his stance on gay rights. This is a man who at one time supported civil unions. Now he does not. This past weekend he even walked back his stance on gay people adopting. If I hear the phrase "children do better with a mother and a father" one more time I am going to get ill.. When I hear that I always think of my two special friends- Daniel and Selena Leffew- who are flourishing in an environment of love and tolerance. My hope is that all of this homophobia FINALLY is deemed unacceptable-that the line FINALLY is drawn in the sand.

    1. Obama probably doesn't really give a fuck lol he just wanting to get re-elected, like I said errthing he does is late

    2. "If I hear the phrase "children do better with a mother and a father" one more time I am going to get ill.."


      Let's re-work your quotation a bit: "Children are better trained to be homophobic, bigoted predators with a mother and father." How's that for accuracy? ;->

    3. 'they' seem to forget that the ozzie and harriet days were entirely a fiction. most families, even if they were "traditional" were nothing like that portrayed on tv. there are bound to have been a very few that did somewhat come close but it was some hyper ideal that most people cannot and should not try to live up to. not that i was there but i know people who were and ive studied actual history.

  6. @Dave Wow.."ain't that the truth!!" lol

    1. Hi Jim,

      Being subtle isn't exactly one of my greater talents. Perhaps you've noticed.... :-D

    2. Bryan,

      Have a very special YouTube video for you to watch. I came across this by accident several months ago, and then it happened again just the other day. This is something we all can use and is simply one of the most beautiful and romantic things I’ve ever witnessed. This certainly will be added to my own arsenal of tricks. Please do watch it as I’m certain you’ll be glad you did. Here’s the link:

      Someone we all know is going to have a major happy attack if you decide to try this on him….

    3. dave,
      yeah, you gave me a very nice problem with this video. as an avid lover of facial hair i have both done this and been the recipient of this and it is amazing. in this video its all the more erotic because it was just a bonding moment. thank you and i hope to do this again.

    4. Hi Steeldrago,

      Glad you enjoyed this. There are others as well. The one you saw is more tender than the others. Another one I’ll give the link to is also tender but more strongly erotic in that the “beard luvin’ “ moves down the body. So this can also be used as a new form of foreplay. The guy doing it in the second video, at least to me, is mega-hot. How the other guy on the receiving end can just lay there that passively, not reciprocate in any way, let alone go completely and utterly crazy over the first guy, as anyone else with half a pulse would, is beyond me…. If guy #1 did that for me, his brains would be rattling now…. Anyway, here’s the link:

    5. o, just letting the guy do that to you can be one of those teaser games that can amp it up when you do finally let go and go after him. i spent the last few hours watching different ones, among other things, i subscribed at video 2. that first vid ranks up there with wake up oral in terms of top ways to wake up.

    6. " that first vid ranks up there with wake up oral in terms of top ways to wake up."

      RISE and shine, there!! :-D :-D :-D

    7. Steeldrago,

      I’ve seen a couple of your YouTube videos and, therefore, suspect you might be someone into freaky stuff musically like me. If that’s the case, then I have something to turn you onto: Ozric Tentacles (Ozzy’s Testicles for those of you out there who’ve had too much to drink :-D ). UK progressive, psychedelic space rock with ethnic influences, especially middle eastern and reggae. Exotic, all instrumental, topnotch musicianship, mixture of blistering psychedelic guitar runs and otherworldly, watery electronics. Can be intense or spacy and ethereal and anything in between. Jaw-dropping awesome lightshow in concert too,which you're now going to be able to see. A dazzling, mind blowing trip fo’ sho.

      Bryan, you may want to check them out too. In one of your “Ask a Gay Family” videos, you commented on your musical tastes and, with your fondness for electronics, instrumentally-oriented stuff and things that take you to a different place, it leads me to believe you might like this too. This stuff will take you to a different place alright. Maybe a different dimension. Warning…you might not come back! Enjoy….

      Since Jay came across rather headbanger / grungey in that same video of yours, he might groove to this too.

      Sploosh (live):

      Pixel Dream (live):

      The Domes of G’Bal (live):

      The Illuminated Chakra’s (about 31 minutes containing 4 songs):

      For the best results, the louder the better. Acidhead paradise for your ears….

    8. yes.. i am...its like you know me Oh, the dimensional trips can be fun, gut wrenching sometimes but fun...especially through mirrors, THAT was a 'fun' one. not bad though. and, no i dont partake of any enhancements, they can be bad for my relationship with the various spirits and entities that are a part of my life.
      having the mountain's song running through my bones for many years it was hard for me to get into music, then i changed. i have a newly discovered appreciation for music, im careful with techno (like aqua) because it has made me physically ill, though. jasun mark has turned me on to mnemic. marz is currently one of my favorites.
      on the topic of my videos...i really have a hard time doing that stuff. i watch them because i dont want a repeat of the fiasco, that i was unaware of, that was the original 'gay lord of the sith' joke vid i sent to J&B (you know i was gonna reverse that cause this is bryan's blog and he should be first but i just cant do that, not after the jokes we cracked about my friend bj-all in good-natured fun); not because i am shy (i am in some ways regarding the 'real' stuff but i have no problem talking to people or to 'showing'- i am a troll and by jay's definition a whore-in my defense, i was only paid once and it was unsolicited), its virtual enough that part does not bother me. i just have no control over who sees them and i have been on the receiving end of some crazy anti-gay crap- i was not even the initiator of that scenario but i was a dumb horny kid. also, i am an extremist in some of my views and i can be very aggressive in regards to those. i am however a live and let live kind of guy-but if you piss in my post toasties i have no problem putting you down, bloody on the alter to my demon gods.(i dont practice blood magick and i dont worship demons either but it illustrates my point perfectly).

    9. Can’t tell by what all you said here whether you saw any of the Ozric Tentacles videos or what you thought of them. You mentioned Jasun Mark. I watch his channel too, and he’s hilarious. A great example is his latest video about some dude who dropped his hardboiled egg outdoors at some gathering and then it rolled past Jasun and stopped at the foot of some lady. She then looked at him and he said, “I’m ovulating.” :-D I thought that one was really hysterical and his style of humor and mine are exactly the same—seriously insane. We’re cosmic twins in that way.

      Yeah, we do joke around a lot here and it certainly spices things up here, which I like but I think it’s important that, when we do it, we create a clear visual break from other comments that are more on topic by creating our own separate reply string. That way it’s obvious to anyone that there’s a separate evolving conversation going on and is in no way to be confused with or commingled with comments that are directly responsive to whatever Bryan’s blog topic happens to be.

  7. Bryan-just looking at your sidebar....I am so happy.. People ARE seeing how wonderfully normal your family is even though you may think not... You are helping a LOT of gay folk out there..sooo proud of you! Big hugs from Jim and Dave!!!

  8. An update on possibly going to see Right To Love in Kansas City on Memorial Day, the 28th. I’m 95%+ decided on going. It’ll be a 3+ hour drive from Omaha, my hometown. And I’ve spent gobs of time tonight on Google Maps, , etc. figuring out where things are, places to go after the film, and nearby hotel options near the theater in Kansas City’s Westport district. Hmmm…maybe with all that effort, I’m more 98%+. Now I just as easily could be a lazy phart and wait for Right To Love to come out on DVD, but I want (and need) some adventure and I want that communal experience of seeing the movie with other gay folks and, for once, dammit, I want to be completely myself—in the physical world; not just in front of a computer screen. And I’ve found a gay bar I can go to and, yes, I have the route and map from the theater to the bar printed and ready. Remember, I’m the guy who emerged from a 15-year caregiving gig for my disabled mother, now deceased, so this gay bar I’m considering going to will be my first experience.

    I wouldn’t be going there with any particular expectations but, I think I better go fully prepared protection-wise in case I end up with a hotel “guest.” I’m by nature more love/LTR-oriented rather than a hump-anything-and-everything-that-moves-within-a-20-foot-radius-and-as-many-as-I-can-squeeze-in-before-my-lunchbreak kind of guy—even if I have the stamina (and I do)—but adventures such as these require covering all possible contingencies, if ya know what I mean.:-) Should be fun whatever happens, unless some Westboro Baptist Theocratic lynch mob gets a hold of me and strings me up by my shorthairs and I’m not talking from my head. :-D Remember, I’m going to be in the same state where those freaks live….

  9. Dave do us a favor and take pics :O)

  10. Jay,

    Is it you this time? The style of smiley you use here is the same used by “depfox” in comments following your Youtube videos and, there, it’s usually Jay posting, so that’s what makes me think you’re Jay and not Bryan this time. Anyway….

    Pictures are the one thing I unfortunately can’t provide. Sorry. The only camera I have (or had) is one of those super-old, crappy Kodak pocket ones—some 30 years old—which takes awful fuzzy pictures and I think I very easily could have lost that in the last move. I’m also badly techie-impaired so, with my work schedule, there simply wouldn’t be enough time to really learn how to work a digital camera well enough even if I went out and bought one. I don’t even own a cell phone, let alone one with a built-in camera and apps. Who, other than me, doesn’t own a cell phone these days? Now you understand what a techie caveman I really am. I did finally manage to wean myself from wearing animal skins, but only because my pelts got lost at the dry cleaners! :-D :-D . And those pelts were vintage too….Damn…. :-D

    Also, I’ll be making this trip solo, so any pictures I could have taken really wouldn’t be that interesting anyway. Trips like these are best taken with a companion, which would make for juicier pix, with all of my misbehavior and what not. :-) The gay bar, as it appears in “Street View” on Google Maps, looks kinda run down and it might be in a rather sketchy neighborhood. (It probably won’t be, but it would be great if it turned out to be a bear bar because I just LUV bears.) Haven’t seen similar pix of the theater, but only because I hadn’t yet thought of looking for them.

    If anything noteworthy happens, I’d be happy to post my experiences here—you know, places I saw…things I did…diseases I caught…. :-D :-D Just kidding about the places I saw and things I did part…. :-D

    1. From, my intended gay bar was Daddy's, 1610 Main Street, KC,MO. I called there and the number is disconnected. Found out a restaurant had gone there afterwards and it's number is disconnected too. The gaybarmaps website, by icons, classified Daddy's as mainly gay male, which is my preference. If you have a lot of lesbians there, you also could have a lot of straights there and I would prefer not having a difficult time telling who's who. The name "Daddy's" to me is vaguely suggestive that it might be rather bear-oriented, as in "daddy bears," so having to scratch them as an option is a real disappointment to me.

      I'll still go to The Right To Love showing but, as far as figuring out where to go afterwards, if anywhere, this is going to get a whole lot more complicated.

    2. Well, it's official now. Just got my hotel reservation done. I'm going for sure now. Game on!!

      On the Kansas City page of, I think there's a Kansas City Pride number I can call and get some advice on what bars that are still in business there most closely fit what I'm looking for.

      The Daddy's place I mentioned earlier that fell through might have been in a really bad neighborhood. If such a bar, for example, is in an area with gang graffiti all over, that probably isn't a safe place to go. Perhaps that Pride organization can advise me on which bars I might like are in acceptably safe areas. At any rate, I have lots of research to do.

    3. I found a website for Kansas City Cave Bears, the premier bear organization there, and they have a section on bear bars and there are quite a few to choose from. When I first found that list, I got the widest grin on my face that I've had in years together with some laughter that was hard to stop. And some are fairly close to the theater and my hotel. I'm just thrilled! I think my odds of getting myself a hotel "guest" just went up a bit. This is going to be freaking awesome! :-)

      If I lived in Kansas City, I would definitely join this bear group. Why can't Omaha have something this cool?

      Anyway, I have lots of Google mapping and printing to do.