Friday, February 29, 2008

Change is Coming

I have been trying my best to contain my excitement about the prospect of Barack Obama securing the Democratic nomination. But I have to say that I am beside myself with excitement. Not only do I feel as though the nation is on the brink of a much needed progressive and positive change, but I also feel as though I am not alone in those feelings. There is too much excitement in the air.

On a slightly different note, I think that when one looks at those who surround John McCain, it's monochromatic. As one comedian suggested, McCain's posse looks like it belongs to a restricted country club. He feels like some anachronistic figure from the 1950s, and I have no desire to turn back. I think we all need a new way forward, and Obama needs to be the captain.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

And the Hits Just Keep On Coming (I Hope)

Today is the Chesapeake Primary (including my home state (VA) and my current domicile (DC)), and I really hope that Obama can pull off what he did over the weekend. "Yes, we can!" "Si, se puede!"

Monday, February 4, 2008


I, like most people, was shocked when I heard that Heath Ledger passed away. Though he was not my favorite actor, I'd enjoyed his performances in several of his movies ("The Brothers Grimm" and "10 Things I Hate About You" really stood out). But it was his characterization of Ennis Del Mar in "Brokeback Mountain" that sealed his legend for me.

It was arguably one of the most heart wrenching performances that I have ever seen on screen. I felt that he captured the torture of the closet perfectly, and I couldn't help but remember when I felt some of the feelings he articulated through his actions and words. I couldn't help but think of the millions of closeted individuals who are suffering as Ennis did, even in the face of the possibility of happiness (like Jack Twist offered Ennis).

I am one of those who felt that the Academy denied "Brokeback Mountain" its due honors, particularly Ledger, and I am a huge fan of Phillip Seymour Hoffman. But that is water under the bridge. His performance was legend, and he deserved the accolades he received. I am sad to know that we will not be able to see how much more he could have done.

Praise Jesus?

There is one area of my life where I am trying to be more understanding, but it is just so difficult to do. I have worked hard to try to live my life openly as a gay dude. I have been blessed with a loving family and remarkable friends. They made my transition from closet to open a safe and loving passage. I owe them so much.

Yet, there are so many other black folks (this is anecdotal evidence from my experiences) who seem either terrified of or indifferent to coming out. Hell, some of them are truly bothered by any public association with things gay.

I have come to loathe the phrase "nobody needs to know my business." It is at this point where my understanding usually goes into full retreat. I am confident that if any of the individuals who have used that line were straight, then the world would know their business, and they would be proud to proclaim it (though perhaps unconscious of doing it).

Why the difference? Unfortunately for some of my fellow 'mos in DC, one sista took it upon herself to set the record (shall I say it?) straight in a bold way. Now this sista's tactics were indeed outrageous and unnecessary. I mean sista called them out by name (first and last, with descriptive commentary). It seemed like revenge in the first degree. But I hope that the folks who were called out will look at this as an opportunity to deal with the reality that the broader GLBT community needs their public voices, and that their families need to know the whole truth about their lives.

Nothing will change within the black community, even with Obama saying all that he can short of an endorsement of equal marriage, until the majority of the black GLBT community ends the game of subterfuge, clandestine love and silence. I am tired of being ignored by both the straight black and non-black gay communities. I know I am not alone, but at least I am willing to let people "know my business." Praise Jesus!

Obama Campaign Video

I have to admit that it wasn't that bad a video. Too bad the overwhelming majority of voting America probably knows only one-tenth of the people who appeared in it.

The Kennedy Stamp of Approval (mostly)

It has been fascinating watching the quiet, yet very public, endorsement game going on within the Kennedy clan. Naturally, as an Obama supporter, I am glad to see that the biggest names in the family (Caroline, Ted, and Maria Shriver) are on my team. But it is worth noting that some of RFK's children are firmly in the HRC camp. But does it mean anything?

The myth of Camelot is a strong one within the American psyche. I can only imagine what it must have been like to see the glamour couple of John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy emerge on the political scene. They both had the proper pedigrees of upper-class American society (Choate & Harvard/Miss Porter's & Vassar (even though GWU gets to claim her)). They looked good, and they were relatively young. They seemed to represent at the time that which America could become in the dawning of the 1960s.

The Obamas have the proper pedigrees of a more meritocratic American society (Columbia & Harvard/Princeton & Harvard). They look good, and they are relatively young. They seem to represent what American can become in the 21st century.

Essentially, there are comparative relationships that can be made. I do think that the Obamas, much more so than the Clintons, represent forward movement for the nation, as the Kennedys did in their time. However, all of these Kennedy references make me nervous. I don't want the anointed as POTUS. I don't think that too much can really be made about those comparative relationships between the Obamas and the Kennedys. They are different people from different times.

I hope that, if I can dare to dream it, if Obama is given the chance to serve as POTUS, that he will surpass any expectation that was ever had for Camelot. Perhaps those Kennedys who have decided to support his campaign feel the same way.