black holes and gray matter. in one thousand tangos.

             
Ana Marie Cox: The LGBT community's lukewarm welcome for the president's gay marriage conversion reflects his lukewarm endorsement

It’s indicative of the rather sour tone that the 2012 election has taken that gay rights advocates can’t even greet the president’s affirmation of marriage equality with unequivocal glee. Mainly because Obama’s affirmation was not exactly unequivocal.

It was more cautious than anything he’s said about Osama bin Laden, for example. He’s “just concluded” that it’s “personally important” for him to “affirm” the right of same-sex couples to marry.

The statement is less an endorsement of that most intimate human right than it is a narrowing of the wide margin of wiggle-room he claimed on the issue beforehand. He has said previously that his position was “evolving”; truth be told, the movement could benefit from the development opposable thumbs. By keeping his position “personal”, Obama escapes attaching himself to particular language in legislation – or to any legislation at all, really.

This also means that LGBT voters can’t necessarily expect the Democrats to put marriage equality in their convention platform. Most, er, personally disappointing – and as put by a colleague on Twitter – is that his slow slide toward justice makes his previous position(s) look all the more craven.

The best news in all this – besides the president finally bending to the leadership of VP Joe Biden – is that the GOP’s response has, thus far, been leaden-footed, ham-fisted and thick-skulled. As far as I can yet tell, they’re choosing to spin the change in position as somehow taking away from Obama’s attention on the economy. (For what it’s worth, the weakness of his endorsement suggests that he’s not going to spending a lot of time taking about gay marriage.) Also, they say, he is “further dividing the country”.

That is demonstrably untrue: the country is already divided, but on this, we are coming together. Which is, after all, the point about marriage rights.”

“Dan Savage is not “insisting that the Bible be interpreted selectively,” he is pointing out that it already is, in literally every single case, interpreted selectively. Unless you are stoning adulterers, you are interpreting the Bible selectively. By this definition, all such communities have “abandoned their faith.” His question was: why must the verse condemning gay people in Leviticus be followed to the letter, while almost none of the other ones are?”

For some time now, anonymous YouTube (and Twitter) user, Are You Surprised, has been posting videos about Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and being in the closet in the military (and giving workout updates via photos), and today he came out on video to the public and came out as gay, by calling his dad. … Congratulations to gay members of the armed services today (and congratulations to all the rest of us).

Navy Clears Gay WW ll Vet’s Record
Photographs of Melvin Dwork, taken in 1943 when he was in the Navy, lie on display at his home in New York. Nearly 70 years after Dwork was expelled from the Navy for being gay, the military is changing his discharge from “undesirable” to “honorable,” marking what is believed to be the first time the Pentagon has taken such a step on behalf of a World War II veteran since the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.”

Navy Clears Gay WW ll Vet’s Record

Photographs of Melvin Dwork, taken in 1943 when he was in the Navy, lie on display at his home in New York. Nearly 70 years after Dwork was expelled from the Navy for being gay, the military is changing his discharge from “undesirable” to “honorable,” marking what is believed to be the first time the Pentagon has taken such a step on behalf of a World War II veteran since the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.”

Los Angeles Unified has become the first school district in California to mandate a gay curriculum

Yesterday, board member Steve Zimmer out-gayed the rest of the state’s school districts — even San Francisco Unified; woot woot! — with the state’s first solid plan to implement SB 48.

Under his resolution, all schools within LAUSD must do the following in their classrooms within three months:

  • Promote positive images of LGBT individuals.
  • Make available age-appropriate LGBT inclusive curriculum for elementary and secondary schools.
  • Require that newly adopted social studies materials include positive representations of LGBT and persons with disabilities.
  • Include LGBT sensitivity in outreach, education, and training for students, parents, and staff.
  • Remind staff of their duty to ensure that all students are safe and affirmed on campus, and to proactively intervene with acts of bias, harassment or bullying that they see, including, but not limited to LGBT-biased language and bullying.
  • Implement for all staff a training specifying legal responsibilities, effective practices, and concerns unique to LGBT individuals, similar to the district’s child abuse module.

LAUSD’s human relations coordinator, Judy Chiasson, tells the LA Daily News elementary-schoolers with same-sex parents will now “be allowed to make two Mother’s or Father’s Day cards without questions or concerns being raised by teachers.”

Read on.

To Avoid Chaos, NYC Sets 764-Wedding Limit on Day 1 of Gay Marriage this Sunday
Mr. Bloomberg said the city would hold a lottery to determine which couples, gay or straight, will be allowed to marry at the five borough clerks’ offices. Sunday is likely to break the single-day record for marriages performed by the city, which currently stands at 621. The clerk’s office has already received 2,661 applications for licenses since it started accepting online applications from same-sex couples. City officials estimated that 1,728 of those applications were from same-sex couples.
©2011 Kateoplis