Friday, September 28, 2012

Never Hide...What Four Years of YouTube and Fighting Prop 8 Has Taught Us

"Hello YouTube!".....thats a phrase has been uttered by my family about 345 times over four years. That is exactly how long we have been doing YouTube videos and here we are nearly four years, on the cusp of what could be a landmark Supreme Court decision regarding Prop 8...and we are still making videos. I remember being so angry during the Prop 8 campaign as commercial after commercial on TV told blatant lies about my family and my life. I couldn't believe that stuff like that was even allowed to air on television. The more I saw, the more the polls would teeter on a knifes edge and all we could do was watch as others endlessly talked about my family and my personal rights as if they were things....not the lives of real human beings seeking the same happiness as anyone else.

As those who opposed marriage equality continued to lie and fear monger, I kept hoping and waiting for the commercials to air that would set the record straight. Were were the guys who were going to call out the liars? Where was the compassion, empathy...or better yet, the truth? As our side showed living room conversations with the parents of gay people...and straight celebrities...the question ultimately became, why are they not showing us, as gay people, telling our own stories? Those commercials never came. It was our anger, and frustration with that that led us to one poorly filmed video over a dinner of chicken nuggets that has launched us onto this journey of trying to show what a gay family is...and is not.

I'd like to say that four years later, our side has taken a few notes from the failures of the Prop 8 campaign, but sadly, that doesn't seem to be the case as pro equality organisations are repeating the mistakes of the past for fear of offending people.

 But I think Britney can say it better than me. Take it away girl....

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Rupert Everett and Turning Homophobia Back On Ourselves

“I can’t think of anything worse than being brought up by two gay dads.Some people might not agree with that. Fine! That’s just my opinion."    -Rupert Everett

For some of you reading this post, Rupert Everett's opinion about same-sex parenting may be old news by now. After all, the internet has been castigating Rupert for more than a week and that's forever in internet time. Yet as a gay father myself, Rupert's words have continued to ring in my mind...not so much for his evaluation of gay parents, but of Rupert himself. For a man out personally and professionally for a good number of years and in a relationship, you would expect Rupert's experience with gay people to be a little broader. And yet from the tone of his comment, it seems clear that he has never even met a gay parent in real life. If we are the worst that he can think of...then he really needs to get out more.
However, I couldn't give a rats behind about Rupert Everett's opinion about me or my family. Like many people, his opinions(or his mothers) are more fueled by ignorance about gay families than by any fact or experience with them. What troubles me more is that Rupert can maintain this point of view in spite of the fact that he, himself, is gay. And yet....Rupert Everett is not the first person I have heard make some head scratching comment about gay people while being gay themselves. Sadly I have heard things come from gay men that sound like they came straight from the press desk at The National Organization for Marriage. It always makes me wonder how in the hell they can think that way about other gay people as if they are not included in their blanket judgments. And so...Rupert's comments have become the catalyst for me to think a lot about acceptance this week and how we come think of ourselves as gay people before and after coming out. Where does self acceptance come from? Is it from living our lives, out to our family and friends?...or is it learning to define "gay" for ourselves? Lets talk about it...

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The "New" Normal?

It seems like all I am blogging about these days is TV.  RNC?....DNC?...who needs all that? I mean....granted there was a couple rather historic speeches that spoke as LGBT people as *gasp* worthy of equal respect, dignity, and the equal treatment of the law...but we're not talking about that today....nope.

Today I finally got to see the series pilot for NBC's The New Normal. And I need to be upfront...I was kind of dreading this show. While on the surface it's a good thing to have representations of gay people on TV...on the other hand, those representations tend to cater more to peoples expectations of gay people than the reality of who we are....especially the ultra sanitized and stereotypical version of gay life favored by network execs.  For example,I know everyone LOVES modern family and Cam and Mitchell, and that's exactly what I expected in terms of how we would be shown. All reality.

But I did watch and I have to admit that I am still processing what I saw. For you guys that means that I will be figuring it out as I am writing this....lucky you. I am having a mixed set of emotions and I guess that must mean that the show got to me on some level and altered my preconceptions of it. Thats good right? Well...pour yourself something cold and lets talk about it....