Archives for posts with tag: Same-sex marriage

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I thought I might write about marriage equality today.  Marriage, fidelity and misogyny.  I may write about that tomorrow.  Instead, I’m going to post some boy pics, something from the garden and tell you all about meeting my long lost lesbian sister.

Yes.  My little sister has turned up.  Of course I knew about her.  I had been told about her.  Perhaps Natalie or Jessica or Rebecca told me… I can’t remember.  All the stories I heard about my father have melded into one.  From one sisters mouth.  All the stories about him spewed out of one mouth.  So, I knew about Roya and finally she revealed herself.

She has lived with her girl friend for the past three years.  She doesn’t drink much.  She can speak Farsi.  She came out when she was 11.  She has a sweet voice.  Her mother was a singer in one of the clubs my father owned.  She is perhaps the most forthcoming and inquisitive of all my siblings.  She doesn’t like being called a dyke.  She’s a lesbian.  She insisted that my brother James tidy our father’s grave and replace the headstone.  She told me that I had a small inheritance.  She told me that my father had mentioned me to her mother.  That was the sweetest gift of all.  That he spoke about me to someone he cared about.  That he remembered.

So all the other stuff, the gay marriage stuff that haunted yesterdays news… well, I had my own gay news and she was it.

Of course there was the usual vitriol about anyone who doesn’t agree with SCOTUS from the gays… and I took time to placate my rabid gay brethren and remind them that the way we treat the vanquished will determine our victory.

The day of the decision I took myself down to Weho with the dogs to watch the crowd.  Everyone looked very happy, quietly jubilant. Sort of fatigued. You know, after a fight is over.

Now what?  The war is won.  American gays will have to work out what it all means… this equality.   They have redefined marriage, will they redefine morals?  Will they mock the single man like straight people do?

For those of us who are single we enjoy the peace of mind that being single affords us.

I urge you not confuse single for lonely… or lonely for single.

Lady Rizo in Kokon To Zai

Sunday 23rd 2012.

New Harris tweed trousers.  They are so thick and keep the cold wind from whipping around my legs.

I had two very different experiences on Friday.

1.

The first, an unfortunate spat on Facebook with a Canadian writer called Michael Rowe.

I think you know, those of you who read this regularly, that I struggle with marriage as the means by which gay and straight people find parity.

That marriage in of itself doesn’t seem to work for many of the people who sign up for it… so why do so many men and women in the LGBQ community want it so badly?

Is it just because they want the ‘benefits’?

I thought about it a great deal this week.

For those of us gay men and women who are now in our early fifties marriage was never an option.  I never hankered after it, nor cared to think about it.

I read this in a British newspaper.

British MPs are planning to create an “exception” in marriage law for same-sex couples and will not alter the definition of adultery.

Either they don’t take us seriously or we don’t take us seriously?

Perhaps gay marriage is indeed separate from straight marriage because we can’t be trusted with monogamy?

Those I respect seem to value marriage equality… so I have been posting thoughts and feelings on my Facebook page.

I am perturbed by how many angry responses I get whenever I write about my marriage equality concerns.

If marriage equality was all we needed or wanted are we selling ourself short? Are we like any cultural minority that lives side by side the majority needing to be tolerated rather than nurtured? Do we need to be understood? Do they need to learn our language? Or, like Hasidic Jews do we evolve separately once we are ‘equal’. Somehow this is not attractive to me.

This question incensed Michael Rowe.

Where are you getting “all we needed or wanted” from? It’s a basic right. That’s not “tolerance,” that’s equality and strength.

The conversation continued privately.

Talking to Michael was like talking to a Zionist.  Realizing that his problem with what I was saying was more about me than the conversation I decided to tread carefully.  He is the sort of man who believes that any gay who comes out of the closet is an unqualified hero.

I’m not an intellectual, nor am I particularly bright… but I am willing to listen… and I am desperate to understand why I am so conflicted about marriage equality.

Because, I think,  it doesn’t seem like equality at all.

So, why am I bothering to fight for something I simply don’t believe in?

It feels like another way to join another elite gang.  A gang that will, if given half the chance, bully you mercilessly.

I’ve seen straight women do this.  Brag about their married status to their unmarried friends.  Causing those unmarried women to burst into tears when they are far enough away from their persecutor.

I asked Michael what he thought marriage would do to our gay culture.  I said, I really want to understand your position.

Not sure what there is to “understand.” Until there is no foundation of complete legal equality for LGBT people, the rest of it, worrying about “our culture,” is frosting with no cake. That’s my position.

Our gay culture is very important to me.  Even if it is on a separate page, in it’s own section at the book shop or the video store or on Netflix.   I enjoy the separation.   You see, I’m not very interested in what straight people make of me or the culture that has sprung up around me.

What will marriage equality do to the gay community?

How will these huge changes affect us and our behavior toward other gay man and women.

If a gay man tells his straight friend that he is getting married will his straight friend feel a flush of envy?

I asked if Michael felt ‘more equal’ than his American friends? He said:

Of course I do. I have approximately 300 more rights than American gay couples whose relationships are not legally recognized, rights that have financial and legal implications.

And no, I don’t feel sorry for gay couples who aren’t married by their choice, but I do feel sorry for those who don’t have that choice.

I don’t think that screaming about how proud you are not to be married carries a lot of weight when that right isn’t even on the table.

Like employment protection. Or do you also feel that a law that protects LGBT Americans from being fired also hurts “our culture?”

Oh dear, Michael was watching the NRA press conference at the time so his irritation may be excused.

He is, as you know, a very important Huffington Post blogger.

A ‘gay voice’.  In the separate but equal ‘gay voice’ section of the Huff Post.

There is a great deal in this last quote that may make you wince… as I winced.

I come from England where Tony Blair gave Waheed Ali carte blanche to equalize the lives of hetero and homo sexual people.

I remember eating lunch in Malibu with Waheed who explained to me how the legislation was written.

He explained that the word Marriage may have been attractive to some but perhaps a little too divisive. They chose civil unions as the way forward.

Total equality (excluding the word marriage) was a great incremental step in the right direction and one that the majority of my gay friends in long-term relationships were happy to embrace.

Michael is not so sure.

“Civil unions” aren’t marriage, and they’re not equality.

He continued inaccurately:

They weren’t “chosen,” they were all they could get because no one would allow them to be married, with full marriage equality, including the rights of citizenship for spouses.

Just to be perfectly clear: the British do have rights for citizenship for spouses and UNMARRIED partners.

Now, that’s what I’m talking about.

After many years of legal parity, the British gays… from a position of strength are asking for the word marriage and asking a very conservative government to boot. They are certain to succeed.

Civil Union may be the best incremental baby step on offer?

What are the incremental baby steps that seem to get American gays no closer to federal recognition of same-sex marriage?

Married Michael Rowe is very proud of his life.

He has achieved what his parents probably wanted for him all through his childhood. The dream of a heteronormative existence.

The rest of the conversation disintegrated into name calling. He called me tiresome, I ended up calling him a cunt and he blocked me on FB and that was that.

If I were in my early thirties I might think that this is a golden age for gay men and lesbians.  That I could enjoy a fully ‘out’ existence,  meet the man of my dreams, marry him, buy some surrogate children and live happily ever after.

That is a perfectly lovely dream to have.

But I am still in two minds.  Shouldn’t we all be fighting for something more than marriage, that marriage should not allow those who are to have so much more than those who are not?

This is not equality.

Some married gay men (like Michael)  are already behaving like my mother and grandmother behaved toward their spinster/old maid/barren friends.  Looking down their married noses.

Do I feel cheated out of different sort of gay life?  If I had grown up around gay men getting married would I have thought differently about the men I dated and the future we could have had?

I have, undoubtedly, missed the man/man marriage boat.   Joe and I talked about it briefly.

When I was growing up the thought of marriage (one man to another) was simply not a consideration.  Like an orthodox jew would never think about eating bacon.  I didn’t really think anything of not being married.

Being brought up in a small town where the majority of my straight peers had children but no marriage… marriage seemed Victorian and absurd.  The people who were getting married were not… cool.  They were… boring.

My straight friends who remained unmarried with many children did very well for themselves.  They ran successful businesses. Their children went to great universities.  They struggled and excelled equally along side those children who came from married families and broken homes.

There really was no difference between them and any other child.

The emphasis on family values seems to have gripped the gays as firmly as the straights.

What ever family means we don’t want to be left out of the explanation.

We all have a family of sorts.  Some have blood relatives, others have an extended family of strangers.

Obviously, I have invested in the latter and have never been let down.

Which brings me to the final part of my blog today.

2.

Sitting with the dogs on Franklin outside my coffee shop of choice I met a young Rabbi.

Charming, Cambridge educated and very enthusiastic.

He invited me to Shabbat the following Friday night.

I had, of course, enjoyed many a Friday night with the Cohen’s in LA.   David, his wife and their 6 children.  40 people for pot luck dinner around a huge table on the lawn then talking about world events with a talking stick.  It was perfect.

This Shabbat was very different.

There were several rabbinical students.  I arrived mid prayer.  For an hour we prayed.

The most exquisite boy with the most beautiful voice (and a baby) sang something on his own before the others joined in.   When he started singing I began to cry.

They prayed and sang (they sang in Hebrew) and faced East, my rabbi friend was particularly enthusiastic.  I sat beside him and he kept apologizing for everything, as if it were a trial for me to be there… when in fact it was beautiful.

I sat there thinking about the gays.  After my run in with Michael.

I wondered if they would have confused my thoughts about how beautiful the singer was with wanting to fuck him.  That most of my gay friends wouldn’t have just enjoyed him, they would have wanted to fuck him.  “He’s hot…”

We ate a huge dinner.  We washed our hands ritually.  After the dinner and conversations with truly wonderful people (I avoided talking Palestine) we sat together for more prayers and a fascinating chat about the Torah.

The young rabbinical students and scholars discussed in a really modern and interesting way what I had been taught was the Old Testament.

Jacob, Joseph and the blessing of the Pharaoh:

My years have been few and difficult.

They talked about other things.

A young man with thick, raven black hair told us he had just visited Sandy Hook.  To offer ‘solace’.

At first I was irritated by the apparent intrusion, it seemed so arrogant.

I was wrong.

He explained that the town was packed with people from all over the world.  That he had witnessed a funeral of one of the murdered children and the parents of the dead child were holding up signs in the car that said, very simply:  “THANK YOU.”

I found him after dinner and thanked him for reminding me that it’s easy to let other people do the difficult tasks.

If Sandy Hook had been an isolated incident then I might have felt differently but Sandy Hook is part of a macabre American theme and we must all, collectively… own it.

It is our responsibility.

That young Jewish man and his five friends had taken responsibility and travelled to Sandy Hook.

By doing so, they had a spiritual awakening.  They were thanked by the parents of dead infants.

They understood (unlike those of us who did not go) something more about America, about bravery, about priority, about consequence.

The two parts of my day could not have been more different.  The childish spat with an entitled gay man and the spiritual warmth of new family offered me by a group of heterosexual strangers.

Inclusion versus exclusion.

Last night Lady Rizo and I had dinner with Winston Churchill’s granddaughter.  I was not the only gay at the dinner for 50.  I avoided the other gays.

I have nothing to say to any of them.

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The gays. Oh God. It’s enough to make you homophobic.

I don’t mean you dear. Not you.

This post is all about children, real or imagined.

Since Obama’s toothless benediction, the gays have become emboldened.

However, this spurt of new confidence has not translated into any sort of useful direct action or changed the argument in any important way.

All that has happened?

The gays decided to take on the owner of Chick-Fil-E because he doesn’t agree with marriage equality.

Good God. All they managed to do was make that guy a whole heap wealthier. Thanks gays.

I hadn’t heard of Chick-Fil-E before the fuss now all I want to do is sample their factory farmed chicken sandwiches.

Damn you gays!

That’s not true. I’m not going there any time soon to eat anything.

Meanwhile, Elton is on vacation with David and his kid… and David and Neil and the twins… all wearing matching white cruise wear. Each surrogate kid costing $160k. A fleet of nannies back on the boat.

Elton laments that his kid will never know his mother. He’s quite right. Erasing mothers from the picture… is just wrong.

Amongst the gays I notice a new theme emerging, something that used to be hinted at, implicit… but recently… in polite circles… made explicit… there is amongst a broad swathe of the gays I meet… an appalling misogyny.

“I don’t hate women, some of my best friends are women.” they say (without irony) when challenged.

Those who have surrogate kids grumble that the women who sold their eggs or carried the child might want something more than the money. They might want to ‘see’ the child. They might want a relationship with the child.

They would prefer that the baby not see the mother at all, that the baby be delivered from vagina to the hands that paid for the baby, like a UPS parcel.

Apparently it’s now possible to take the DNA from two men and create a child without any genetic material from a woman. I was told this frightening news triumphantly by a gay man the other day.

“You would still need a womb.” he told me sadly. “But it’s only a matter of time before that (a womb) can be replaced too.”

I was uncharacteristically speechless.

Is erasing the mother from the picture just wrong or am I being old-fashioned?

I met gay Ian, a young CAA agent manque.

“I suppose that’s the benefit of being gay… no women.”

A perfect world for Ian: married, baby, no women.

He, ‘Didn’t see the point..” of women. “Women are our natural enemy.” He giggled.

“Are you single?” I asked him. He looked appalled. My question implied that I might want more than a conversation.

I reassured him that I tended to fuck people my own height.

His modern, bourgeoise anxieties included: he would never be able to afford a surrogate child.

That he would never meet a perfect man and marry him.

His friend Zach chimed in helpfully, “Surrogate kids are only 8 grand in India.” No problems with permits he assured us and the women can’t find you.

The gayby industry is being outsourced.

The vitriol spewed over me (as usual) in the Data Lounge is worth noting.

Writhing with xenophobic zeal these queens who hate me seem to hate me for all the things us gays are meant to aspire: beautiful men, money and uniqueness. Ill informed opinions about my house etc. can be ignored.

I feel sorry for the young gay guy who wanted to celebrate me then ended up apologizing for all the nastiness.

Those resentful old poofs who hate me? Well, you’ll have to try little bit harder. As you simper at home writing anonymous shit about me… I’m out and about having a great time.

Thank you very much.

Remember, after ten years a resentment has more to do with the person harbouring it than the intended recipient. Get over yourselves.

Of course, some resentments are fresh and well deserved.

My ex has every reason to loathe me and I wouldn’t expect anything else. I made his life hell after we split up and increasingly, every day in fact, I wish I could put that genie back in the bottle.

P.S. Do I think I’m better than most people? Nope. Do I look down at you from a lofty place judging you? Would I want anyone else’s life? Nope. I don’t envy anyone… ever. I really love my life… good and bad.

And finally, something more to celebrate.

As I’ve written before, I saw those amazing pics of the ex bf with his current beau. They looked great.

They are unashamedly gay.

I applaud his apotheosis.

It is time for us all to jettison the mantle of straight acting, embrace our gayness in what ever form that takes.

That ex of mine has come a very long way since I first met him, from the artificially deep voice, the bad clothes and heterosexual relationship (he even berated my occasional gay flourishes) to dating a man who skips around his closet in 6 inch heels.

Some of my friends who viewed the style u like vid wondered how a man like that could call himself a jock… well my dears, he can call himself anything he likes.

When you have really loved someone and they fuck you over… however long it takes, the aim must always be to forgive and forget.

Loving him gave me a great deal of pleasure and pain but it was something.

We sure had something. And, when they ask me what that something was I can look them in the eye and say, with all honesty, that it was nothing they would want… but it suited me just fine.

However an impossible fantasy it was.

He was like an imprisoned child back then, in desperate need of parole. Boxed in by lies and deception. He became my child, my gay child.

Like every daddy I wanted the best for him.

When I didn’t know where he was, I worried about him… like a child.

Now I know that he is happy… I am happy.

Wasn’t that always my intention? To make him happy, however he wanted it?

What transpired was completely at odds with what I first wanted… Because I fell in love.

I tried not to… but I couldn’t help it.

I let myself fall like an olympic diver into a magnificent pool of crystal clear love.

Sadly, I hit the bottom of the pool and bashed my brains out.

Yasmin Nair: Gay marriage, as framed in the United States, is the ultimate neoliberal fantasy, in that it allows for a politics of the personal to masquerade as a necessity for policy change. In the process, it serves to distract us from the very real issues facing millions of U.S. citizens and residents.

Yesterday the President of the United States, leader of the free and democratic world let a middle-aged black woman from network TV know his personal opinion of…what they call here in the USA (divisively call) same-sex or gay marriage.

Languorous platitudes.

For many gays just listening to the President say gay and lesbian and marriage and agree in the same sentence was enough to have them wildly screaming with joy. Heading to their local bar and ordering martinis and Brazilian wax jobs…

You know, I’m an old fart, I’ve heard many politicians from all manner of countries embrace their gay electorate. The ones I remember best are Paul Keating in Australia who gave an impassioned speech about anti-vilification and inclusivity (made me cry) and of course Tony Blair who charged Waheed (Ali) with his far-reaching UK gay equality bill. (did not make me cry)

It seemed to us, during the grim Thatcher years, that gay rights would never materialize…that we were not welcome in our own country…but I put my faith in activists like Peter Tatchell who steadfastly turned up outside the homes of homophobes, the offices of homophobic organizations, held incendiary Outrage! placards, got arrested and generally caused trouble where ever he could so that our enemy never felt like they could get away with discriminatory behavior.

The gay elite sneered at Peter. They hated him for his trouble making, they called him insane, they denigrated his direct action. Recently, Elton John famously said that he was scared of Peter Tatchell but now (decades later) understands how important people like Peter are.

Peter is a national treasure, brain-damaged from repeated police beatings, poor from dedicating himself to our equality…thankfully he has been embraced by the same elite who once scoffed at his anarchic antics.

He taught me: never accept anything a politician says at face value.

So, when President Obama, flagging in popularity amongst his own, wants a boost? There we are…the convenient truth.

Today, I managed to incite the ire of my friends and foes alike by sneering at President Obama’s ill-judged and badly timed personal opinion about marriage equality.

The day after the 39th state in the union denounced same sex marriage and civil unions…North Carolina…he decides to ‘bravely’ come out for the gays.

Not everyone bought the president’s evolution.

“Waiting until AFTER the vote that divested NC’s gays of their constitutional /civil rights to speak for marriage equality is cowardly NOT heroic.” Roseanne Barr

Either POTUS had been forced into sharing his opinion by VP Joe Biden who declared his support for marriage equality a day or so earlier…or the entire fiasco had been manufactured by David Axelrod so President Obama could finally reclaim and re-energize his base.
“The president sets the policy. I am absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties. And quite frankly, I don’t see much of a distinction– beyond that.” Joe Biden

Frankly, it wouldn’t surprise me if the scenario had been planned.

The President merely said what any intelligent, liberal, modern man in his position must have thought for some time. I doubt whether his position had ‘evolved’. All that had ‘evolved’ was the moment his pro gay position could be revealed for maximum impact.

He was described as ‘brave’ his decision as ‘risky’ and his few words as ‘historical’. The interview applauded by gay groups and liberal straights alike.

Today, yesterday, I engaged in heated debates on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, famously pissing off Jesse Tyler Fergusonwho appeared last night on Piers Morgan gushing over the president like a Thai hooker.

Jesse Tyler Ferguson@jessetyler

@duncaninla change takes time. It’s impossible to please everyone. Especially those who make it impossible to please.

Within minutes of the president’s pronouncement his liberal apotheosis began.

I was bombarded with fund raising requests from organizations like the HRC who shamelessly picked over the bones of the ‘unexpected’ Presidential LGBT patronage. The Obama ‘evolution’ will net millions for his campaign from traditionally very generous LGBT donors.

The gays reacted with unbridled and unquestioning enthusiasm, as a community we seem addicted to good news and paternalistic validation.

Upon hearing the Obamamessiah’s announcement Andrew Sullivan, the gay pundit had ‘tears in his eyes’. President Obama, according to Sullivan, has ‘let go of fear’. In Sullivan’s sentimental one issue world he succumbs, finally to the President’s change he could believe in.

Sullivan guesses that Obama has owned his blackness is the same way we must own our gayness. (I had tears in my eyes when I read that)

Andrew Sullivan gushes along side our friend Jesse Ferguson: The President’s endorsement will make young gays feel better about themselves, gay parents will know their kids have a place in the USA. In Sullivan’s exciting new world of Presidential fearlessness there’s a great deal of…expectation…I hope he isn’t disappointed.

Unless…of course, you’re the parents of children killed in drone attacks in northern Afghanistan…or find yourself out of a home or a job because the President is still fearful of the banks and his own military.

I found myself wondering what young straight people were thinking. Those who have supported the abstract notion of marriage equality but now peer at it cautiously…startled by the Presidential candor…like it’s a real issue and not something they have patiently listened to their gay friends bang on about.

Straight people might agree in principle with marriage equality but when ever we find this issue on the ballot…we lose.

Black voters, led by black churches, have played key roles in blocking same-sex marriage in states like California, where 2008 exit polls indicated about 70 percent black opposition, and Maryland, where black Democrats were part of a statehouse coalition that stalled a gay marriage bill in 2011.

Which brings me to this: The nub, the thorny question of style.

I have never liked the word marriage. It is steeped in heterosexual tradition.

I have never felt like I wanted to own this non secular word. It has nothing to do with me or the language and traditions of the gay life I evolved along side other men and women if the UK.

Yasmin Nair: “The fight for gay marriage, in granting that institution so much importance, is slowly eroding the possibility that the rest of the population might get rights and benefits without marrying each other. The fight over gay marriage has emerged as a progressive cause that all progressive straights should join when, in fact, it’s a deeply conservative movement that strips our movement of any imagination. Instead of asking for one way to grant rights and benefits, we ought to be advocating for a multiplicity of options.”

It is my understanding that when Waheed Ali was given the choice…he chose (after consultation) civil union as the way forward for British Gays and Lesbians. Now, 15 years later, those words are once again being re-evaluated. British gays are demanding the word marriage. Not my choice but, thankfully, they are fighting from a position of power.

Their equal rights already assured the word marriage is merely the icing on the equality cake…nor thankfully are the LGBT community in the UK hankering for the Queen to validate their position.

Once upon a time Civil Unions were mooted then tentatively offered to the LGBT community here in the USA but…they turned them down flat.

Even George W Bush thought Civil Unions a good idea. The LGBT community said they were not prepared to be separate but equal yet in the same breath tried convincing the skeptical that incremental baby steps toward marriage equality was the only way.

Civil Union might have been a great baby step…no?

Now, even Civil Unions are being outlawed for gay people. Since Bush left office the right wing has become insanely entrenched, enraged, intractable….and unbelievably…more right wing.

Later, in the ‘historic’ interview President Obama made it clear what he considered important elements of a marriage: Commitment and monogamy. I nearly choked. So many of my gay friends do not rate monogamy highly on their list of per-requisites for a good gay marriage.

We are entering uncharted moral territory.

Yesterday, my educated American friends were baffled and confused when I said: Capitalism discovered that the LGBT community was generally well educated and affluent…and could be bought.

It is indeed a very interesting time to be gay in the USA. However, I’d like to see less simpering, fewer baby steps and more activism. Less cowardice and ass bleaching and more brave souls willing to be arrested and stand up for the rights they expect others to win for them.

What we do with this presidential approval is up to us.

The only time I have ever felt proud of American gays in my life time was when prop 8 was ratified. The people took to the streets, they ensnared the traffic of Los Angeles, stormed Mormon churches and caused mayhem in the city.

It was a night to be proud to be gay and I urge you all to remember the anger you felt that night because you must feel that anger every night until you are equal in every way.

Jeanne Cordova: “At the time, selling out our radical underpinnings made me very sad. We egg-throwers had to morph into omelet makers. Unhappily, I was left with the realization that all social movements start with radical ideology, but unless they progress to a blood and guts revolution, like a socialist overthrow, movements must inevitably adopt a civil rights and assimilationist stance or die out.”

There are certainly occasions in one’s life when one wishes for a different outcome. Yesterday was one of those days.

Most of the day was just fine. Dan headed upstate to see his father and I was left with vacuuming duties. I walked the dog, made calls, wrote my blog. I enjoyed the beautiful spring morning sitting outside Mud cafe drinking their pungent coffee.

I sat in the steam room with Brendan and his buddy. Ian turned up for tea at 4 and we watched a little of the Kentucky Derby festivities on the roof of Soho House. Women in large hats and men is suits with white carnations pinned to their lapels.

After a short nap I changed into a very slimming Helmut Lang suit and headed up town where I met my friend Zack, his friend David and Austin. We ate huge New York steaks for dinner. The conversation centered largely around new incidence of HIV infection, our irrational fear of contracting AIDS and what these fears really mean. Remember, I was convinced in 1985 that I was dying of AIDS. I was so certain that the doctors who were giving me the negative results were lying to me that I ended up having three or four tests a week in clinics all over London.

I ended up in The Henderson Hospital in Sutton, Surrey.  A total wreck.

The conversation shifted to how gay men in the USA tend to just fight for the issues that directly affect them and not for the community of gay men with all its various needs. It infuriates me that a) the gays are constantly worried by what their enemies are thinking about them. b) they are frightened to be seen to fight for their rights. c) The gays who are shaping whatever equality legislation is being shaped are so arrogant that they can’t begin to accept any outcome other than the one that they have defined. Gay MARRIAGE for instance. Nothing less will do…even if it means nothing at all.

After dinner Austin’s husband Jake turned up looking great and we all headed over to Ken Mehlman‘s apartment. Why? Birthday party.

Austin and Jake had the right idea, they left immediately.  I waded into a vat of fascist molasses.

The level of discomfort I felt is almost impossible to articulate.  200 gay men who usually wear suits now dressed in overly tight tee shirts, chinos rolled up to mid calf and brightly colored accessories.

In the very heart of this wasps nest I saw Herndon Graddick a creepy representative from the absurd, self-congratulatory, gay organization GLADD. Another smug, gay clique that gives out awards to straight people for being our friends. Why do we give straight people awards for being our friends? Because we are so damned grateful. Thanks straight people.

Anyway, when I arrived there was Herndon Graddick sucking up to Ken Mehlman. Apparently I had fallen out with Herndon years ago. I couldn’t remember why. Apparently I sent him nasty text messages. He probably fucking deserved them.

Ken Mehlman’s apartment was so devoid of personality I thought maybe it was being staged for sale. His sterile bedroom was decorated in brown and beige and the bed looked like it was cast in concrete. Like him, his environment was hostile and ugly.

He is perhaps one of the most repellent individuals ever to come out as gay…apart from The Penguin. It made my blood boil that he had selfishly put his self-serving career ahead of his own needs as a human being or the needs of others (like the Penguin) and cruelly turned his back on his gay community, the same community that now sat around drinking his vodka served by a grumpy straight boy.

Ken Mehlman is morally bankrupt yet, because he has money, these vile, insipid queens flock around him with gay abandon. Ignoring that he betrayed every one of us.

He is like a Jew who relished throwing other Jews into the ovens at Auchwitz.

To my knowledge he has never apologised, he has never acknowledged his part in the ongoing homophobic carnage during his tenure as chair of the RNC.

True, this vile man acknowledged that, had he come out of the closet earlier, he could have impacted Republican efforts to pass state initiatives and referenda banning same-sex marriage. Fuck you Ken Mehlman.

NOT ALL CLOSETS ARE CREATED EQUAL!

His guests were just as disgusting.

Met this small, Jewish man who works for some gay rights organization. He was so fucking naive. He told me in all seriousness that they had found out through a ‘study’ that most straight people site ‘love and relationship’ as the reason for getting married and not (as the gays are always demanding) for rights and benefits. Hey buddy, tell your gay friends to start asking for their love to be recognized rather than a bunch of nebulous rights and we may very well get our message heard.

He was trying to persuade me that his mission was to get Ken to convince George W Bush to come out in favor of gay marriage. Think about that for a moment… think about it.

The same dwarfish, Jewish kid mocked the British for their Civil Unions. I was simply appalled. What a CUNT. I should have punched him.

As we left Zack and I decided to say goodbye to Ken and thank him for having us. Zack said, “You are my hero.” Ken made him repeat the line three times.

We left the party. Headed over to some deserted bar. Met up with cute boy from last night. I was so fired up by the inequity of the evening that I walked home, took dog to park and went to bed.

Human Rights defender Peter Tatchell today writes in favour of gay Marriage and, after much soul searching,  I find myself agreeing with his argument.

Same-sex marriage is an idea whose time has come. It is the growing trend.

Political support for ending the ban on gay marriage is growing rapidly. London Mayor, Boris Johnson, and Conservative Party Vice-Chair, Margot James MP, have both come out in favour of allowing lesbian and gay couples to marry in a registry office, on the same terms as heterosexual partners.

This view is also endorsed by the leader and the deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Clegg and Simon Hughes. Indeed, Hughes has predicted that the ban on same-sex marriage will go within five years.

All five Labour leadership contenders – Ed Balls, Diane Abbott, Andy Burnham, Ed Miliband and David Miliband – now back marriage equality, regardless of sexual orientation.

Public attitudes have also shifted strongly in favour of allowing gay couples to marry. A Populus poll for the Times newspaper in June 2009 found that 61% of the public believe that: “Gay couples should have an equal right to get married, not just to have civil partnerships.” Only 33% disagreed.

Some people say that civil partnerships are sufficient for gay couples. This is hypocritical. They would not accept a similar ban on black people getting married.

They would never agree with a law that required black couples to register their relationships through a separate system called civil partnerships.

It would be racist to have separate laws for black and white couples. We’d call it apartheid, like what used to exist in South Africa. Well, black people are not banned from marriage but lesbian and gay couples are.

We are fobbed off with second class civil partnerships.

Personally, I don’t like marriage. I share the feminist critique of its history of sexism and patriarchy. I would not want to get married. But as a democrat and human rights defender, I support the right of others to marry, if they wish.

That’s why I believe that civil marriage in a registry office should be open to everyone without discrimination.

Don’t get me wrong, civil partnerships are an important advance. They remedy many – though not all – of the injustices that used to be experienced by lesbian and gay couples. But they are not equality.

They are discrimination. Separate is not equal.

In terms of the law, civil partnerships are a form of sexual apartheid. They create a two-tier system of partnership recognition: one law for heterosexuals (civil marriage) and another law for same-sex couples (civil partnerships).

This perpetuates and extends discrimination. The homophobia of the ban on same-sex civil marriage is now compounded by the heterophobia of the ban on opposite-sex civil partnerships.

Just as a gay couple cannot have a civil marriage, a straight couple cannot have a civil partnership. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

Sadly, the official policies of the Conservative and Labour parties do not support same-sex civil marriage. They oppose it. They support discrimination.

The Green Party and the Liberal Democrats are, so far, the only parties officially committed to giving same-sex partners the right to civil marriage – and heterosexual couples the right to civil partnerships.

In a democracy, we are all supposed to be equal under the law. The Con-Lib coalition‘s professed commitment to gay equality cannot be taken seriously while it upholds the ban on same-sex marriage.

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