I voted early today. If you're in Texas, don't forget to vote on Tuesday.
I was going to write a long post about who I voted for and why, but I'm not feeling up to it at the moment.
Let me give you the very short version:
While I like that Obama might help end a lot of the partisan bickering going on, and while I find him very smart, passionate, and inspiring, the more I think about his stances, the less substance I see, and that worries me.
ESPN's (almost) Gay Bash
Let me start by saying that I've never been involved in any type of anti-gay confrontation. I've never had anyone call me a fag, like pomo recently did
, I've never been threatened, and I most certainly have never been beaten up because I'm gay. That's not to say that these types of things don't happen. I've just been lucky enough to not have them happen to me.
Obviously, not everyone's so lucky. Recently LZ Granderson, a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine, wasn't as lucky as me
, and now that it's over, I'm sure he's just feeling lucky that he didn't have to go to the hospital. Just last week while in New Orleans for the NBA All Star Game, the sports writer literally thought he might die at the hands of an anti-gay crowd. While walking through the craziness of the French Quarter, LZ was picked out of a crowd and berated for being gay. As he tried to ignore the taunts, they got worse and more people joined in. Soon enough, Granderson was surrounded, and had it not been for some nearby police officers, violence would have been next.
All because he's gay. What an unbelievable phenomenon.
In the article, Granderson calls for the NFL to take a stronger stance against homophobia (a call I've heard gay people make to other
organizations recently too), and he unabashedly tells his readers that he does
have an agenda. He "want[s] a country where it isn't OK to get the snot kicked out of you because you're different."
I love that he came out and said it, because for all of the rhetoric coming from the far-right and the anti-gay folks, the reality is that gay agenda has nothing to do with trying to turn kids gay or destroying the morality, history, and traditions of western civilization. It's all about wanting to live in a world where getting beaten up just for being gay isn't a concern. It's about not having to worry that walking down the street and just looking "too gay" might turn into a black eye. It's about human decency.
So, let me go on record with LZ and say that I've got an agenda too. Call it the gay agenda--the real gay agenda. I'm here to show people (in this blog and in realy life) how normal gay people really are in hopes that someday I won't have to read these kind of stories anymore. In my little way, I'm going to spread the gay agenda.
(hat tip: Ex-Gay Watch
Obama and Clinton in Houston
Obama and Clinton in Houston, and I saw them both this week. Well, I saw Chelsea rather than Bill or Hillary, but I saw her from about 5 feet away with only about 100 other people, so that makes it worth it.
Both were great speakers. J's mom said she felt like we saw what will come to be known as one of the great speeches of the century from Obama. He was incredibly eloquent, very passionate, and extremely dynamic. I've honestly never seen people get so excited over politics before. He might be the guy that finally helps put all of this partisan nonsense to rest.
I will say that I couldn't shake this feeling that Obama reminded me just a little of the kid running for class President promising his fellow students "no school on Fridays" to the cheers of the assembly hall. A lot of great ideas, but I felt like he was lacking some of the "hows." And, maybe it's my pessimism, but the President can only do so much.
Chelsea was also great . The setting was obviously a lot different (I saw Obama with 18,000 other people), but she fit the venue we saw her in very well. She prefers small groups, and you could see why. She was sweet, endearing, and very personal (and beautiful, I must say). Her talk was almost all Q&A, so maybe she benefited from that, but she went into specifics about the "hows" that Obama seemed to leave out. She's a great spokesperson for her mother, I'll definitely give her that. And, while the Obama supporters seemed like they were ready for a Bon Jovi concert (cheering, yelling, and going nuts), the Hillary folks were not just trying to get us excited, but they were walking around spelling out exactly how to caucus here in Texas.
Wow, what a big week. Both were last minute decisions for J and me, but we're really glad we went.
And, after all this...I still have no idea who I'm voting for. Is John McCain coming to town soon?
I've updated my blogroll. It's been far too long. I don't know why I can't get myself around to updating that thing.
Anyway, this time around all I did is add some new blogs, several of which I've already mentioned in a post. Here they are (in no particular order):The Pink ArmageddonArmored CityJared's BlogGoing the Other WayFingerprintsMy Life
If I've left anyone out, shoot me an email or a comment, and I'll be glad to add you!
P.S.- There sure are a lot of people interested in American Idol being fake and the Roger Clemens fiasco being a partisan issue. Who knew?
Roger Clemens = Partisan Politics?
You know, I've always wondered how issues can so quickly become partisan in the political arena. What about something like the environment makes Republicans think one way and Democrats think another, especially when a lot of issues fall really far from the core principles of the parties?
So, you can imagine my utter disbelief when I realized that the Roger Clemens scandal has become a partisan
issue too. Republicans generally have believed him and disbelieved his trainer, and Democrats generally have disbelieved Roger and somewhat believed his trainer. Huh?
Honestly, politics really makes no sense sometimes.
Is American Idol Fake?
Ok, so one more quick post about American Idol.
I was doing a little research on American Idol, and I found this very interesting article
(top 24 spoiler alert!) about American Idol using already-signed recording artists this year. In fact, according to the article, 11 of the top 24 already had some serious music industry connections. One of the top 50 was even nominated for a Grammy.
Several of these 11 had only done things like win or be on other reality shows, so I can't really blame Idol for that. This includes my current favorite David Archuleta, who won Star Search a few years ago (although oddly, his personal website before he got on Idol has now been taken down). So, for these guys, if they've been on other reality shows, that hardly makes them off limits to American Idol.
But, some of these guys actually released albums with major labels. That's pretty insane if you ask me.
The article I linked to goes a little further than I'm willing to go with accusations. In watching the top 50, it really looked like all of the singers had to prove themselves on their own merit, and the article is strongly inferring that these professional singers are basically given a pass through to the top 24. Even still, doesn't it take some of the fun out of the show when a third to a half of the top 24 aren't the "boy/girl next door turns famous" stories we get so excited about?
I wonder if this is going to change how I view the show. What do you guys think?
Yes, I'm one of the suckers that falls into watching American Idol every season. Well, actually what I typically do is watch the audition cities, Hollywood, and sometimes the top 24, and then when they get dwindled down to the top 12, they've usually cut everyone I was rooting for, so I stop watching regularly.
I still usually catch it here and there if I'm bored, but it's a bit harder to watch when you don't really like any of the finalists.
Anyway, I watched last night's episode, and I was amazed at some of the voices. I mean, I got chills a few times. My favorite so far is David Archuleta
. He is so adorable, shy and likeable, and has such a good voice. I can see the little teenage girls and middle-aged housewives keeping him in the competition for a long time. Good luck to him!
Yes, I made an American Idol blog post. How trite is that? Oh well ;-)
Arizona Tries Again
Sometimes people just won't quit. Even though Arizona voters defeated a Constitutional amdendment to ban gay marriage, domestic parternships, and civil unions in 2006, the lawmakers in that state are trying again
, hoping to send a new anti-gay marriage proposal to voters.
These guys already tried once, and the voters made their voices heard. Do they just get to keep training until they win? Apparently so. As much as I think the "our taxpayer money would be better spent elsewhere" argument is a fairly weak one, it's pretty accurate in this case.
Look, you tried, it failed, give up. Do people really want to discriminate this badly that they will just foam at the mouth until they get their way? Maybe they should call Massachusetts and find out that they still have the lowest divorce rates in the country. See, the sky really won't fall.
Back and Safe
I'm back at home (and work) in Texas. New Orleans was fun, as always, and the weather could not have been more perfect. J and I are going back with some friends in April, and we're both looking forward to visiting the city without the millions of tourists (and beads). It's been a while since we've done that.
New Orleans just has something about it that I can't get away from. I love it every time I go. I realize going somewhere for a 3-day or 4-day weekend isn't what actually living there would be like, but I can't help but think that for some reason my personality just meshes well with that city. One day I think I'll end up there.
I won't be posting again until at least Tuesday as I'll be doing my best to behave myself in New Orleans (hey I never claimed I didn't get crazy from time to time). Don't worry, I will remember "who I am and whose I am" (thanks J's mom), and other than being a little hoarse from too much "Sing-along-Sunday" at one of the local bars, I'll be just fine.