Friday, February 13, 2004

Someday we'll outnumber you and you'll be the abnormal ones...

Ahhhh, if only. I managed to find a 2nd copy of this book, so am selling one on eBay (click pic to go to auction). It's amusing (not) how the prediction that the homosexuals would wind up outnumbering the str8's hasn't yet materialized. In fact, I think we've gone from 1 in 6 to 1 in 10 down to about 1 in 25, depending on who you believe. Best part fo the book, as is usual with this sort of literature, is the artwork. At first I only noticed how the one guy was lavendar-hued on the front cover; then, when readying it for auction, I realized that on the back, 5 of the 6 men are lavendar.

On a slightly related topic, I happened to be channel surfing last night, and stumbled upon C-SPAN's coverage of the Massachusetts's Constitutional Convention (yes, C-SPAN is on my list of favorite channels). Sometime around 7:30/8pm, a Republican man was explaining the compromise amendment, defining marriage as one man + one woman, but included a parallel provision for Civil Unions. And some discussion on giving the citizenry a chance to vote/participate, not leaving a group of citizens out (gays) when it comes to the protections of the law, etc etc. It was actually rather sensible, and reasonable. I started to think, if the law would be identical protections/resposibilities, why fight over the word? And then next came up a Democrat, self-described practicing Catholic, named David Magnani. Immediately my guard went up, expecting some lecture about sanctity of marriage, or whatever. Much to my surprise, it was an eloquent plea not to amend their constitution and take away rights from a group of citizens. I wish I could find the full text of it, as he described his struggle with the issue, his faith, his role as a legislator. I was moved to tears, in fact. Perhaps because my own prejudices about what a straight Catholic man would believe, I was caught off guard by his well-reasoned argument about the seriousness of the moment, the important issues at stake, and his role in insuring "the greatest good for the greatest number of people." I was glued to my television, suddenly feeling this optimism about government, and straight people, and the future.

A few speakers later was a legislator who happened to be lesbian. I don't want to put her down, but I have to say she bored me to death. She did say at the onset that she wasn't a great public speaker, and out of some sort of guilt I felt I had to listen. She droned on and on, things I've heard before, health insurance, visitation in hospital, etc., etc., nothing new, poorly articulated, but she continued on. She finished up, thanking the chamber for its time and attention, and there was a good amount of cheering from unseen people. And maybe some of you know how C-SPAN works. Pretty much a one or two camera operation; one focused on the podium for close-ups, and one long shot showing the front of the room. Now we have the long shot as she leaves the podium, and about 15-20 of her fellow legislators line up to hug and congratulate her. That's when I got it -- it sounds like a mantra, but its true: visibility. We have to be out, we have to be open about who we are, and we have to show that we are everywhere. Clearly Mr. Magnani has experienced this, and couldn't in good conscience find any legitimate reason for calling a marriage between two gay people anything other than marriage.