I was pretty damned worried about last night, as all of my coworkers and my spouse can attest to. Despite the fact that Obama was running a masterful campaign, I couldn't help but think that he's a Democrat, and as such, he's storied in the art of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. Thankfully, Obama was a Democrat in party only and victory was his. Now comes the hard part. I have no reservations about the long, difficult road ahead of him, but if anyone in the past few years seems equipped to travel it with grace and competence, he's it. I am incredibly proud to be an American right now.
Unfortunately with a fantastic win comes some pretty shitty losses, namely the various anti-gay measures that passed across the country. California and Arkansas are particularly odious with the former potentially destroying 18,000 valid, legal marriages between committed couples and the latter banning unmarried couples from adopting children or being foster parents. To those in California who voted for Proposition 8, I would say that I hope it's just that you didn't understand the repurcussions of your vote, and not that you're so incredibly dense as to think that destroying thousands of marriages actually strengthens marriage. I would also ask you to think about how you would feel if a religious group were to feel very strongly about a reason why your particular marriage should end, and they lobbied to have your marriage dissolved just because their holy book said that you shouldn't be married to your spouse. I bet you'd be none too pleased about it. I'd also like to think about what might happen if your child grows up to be gay and the joyful conversation you can have with them about why they're not allowed to be married and share the same joy of life long commitment that you do. Then again, maybe you secretly hate marriage. If so, then well played, because you're certainly doing well to fuck it up for the rest of us.
To those in Arkansas, I would say, you're all fucking idiots. Pure and simple. I don't care who the fuck you are, if you voted for the ban, you're a fucking idiot. Seriously, in a country where so many children need good homes and are in foster care, you're going to limit who can adopt or be foster parents simply based on marital status? Do you seriously hate gays so much that you would deny them the joy of parenthood, or more importantly, deny a child the opportunity to be raised by loving parents? Way to live Jesus's words. I'm sure He's thrilled with you right now. As the father of an adopted child and the father of young children, to know that the possibility of them growing up gay means that they could neither get married nor be parents sickens me as it should sicken you.
It blows my mind that in the same day that we elect an African-American to the highest office in the land that we could also write so much hatred and bigotry, because yes it is bigotry, into state constitutions. It serves as a sobering wake up call to the fact that we may have come far, but we haven't come nearly far enough. There is still plenty of work to be done, and not just for gay rights, but for all who have been margianlized or maligned because they look different, practice different faiths, or love differently. Let us not forget that and grow complacent. Instead, let's take a small moment to reflect on what we've done so far and then get back to work.