Friday, October 21, 2011

News on Erica's gaydar

I had a whole bunch of articles that interested me at work this week, but managed to forget to link any of them into my gmail account before I shut the work computer off and left for the weekend. It didn't help that most of them raised my blood pressure in unsexy ways. After the week I had at work, though- which was a succession of frustrating and emotionally draining situations- I've decided it'd be legitimate to make this week's news post focus on happy, LGBTIQ-related stories.

First, Zachary Quinto has joined the list of celebrities outing themselves. While he's remained mum on the subject of his sexuality in the past, he's decided in light of the number of LGBTIQ adolescents committing suicide after being severely bullied that it's time to demonstrate to LGBTIQ youth that life does, in fact, get better. Now, I do have some issues with the "it gets better" movement- namely that it WON'T get better unless people quit their homophobia and bullying, and we also need to focus on getting those people to cut it the fuck out- but it makes me feel a million times lighter and more optimistic to see how many public figures are willing to reach out to the youth whose lives are being ruined.

On that note, Canada has my vote for being the coolest country (yet again). Why? Because its conservative politicians banded together, also in response to a gay teen's suicide, to create an "it gets better" video (which, by the way, is linked in the article). How incredible is that? A political party- a branch of the government- is reaching out to send an official message that we, as a society, need to support LGBTIQ youth. Can you imagine if that were to happen in the States? So many politicians are far too worried about constituencies to care if their message might destroy a life. Go Canada!

And finally, there's been a whole lot of people pushing for a reconsideration of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), particularly now that Don't Ask, Don't Tell is officially an embarrassing, but closed, chapter of our history. As of right now, same-sex couples in the US can use military chapels to have weddings, but only in the states where same-sex marriage is legal. Basically, we're encountering the challenges that we knew would happen with the repeal of DADT: you can now have a partner, or a committed relationship, but you can't give that partner benefits or receive your housing pay to live with them. It's really quite stupid. On the bright side, though, that push for the repeal of DOMA has a number of interesting people behind it- including the linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens, Brendon Ayanbadejo. Now, I don't believe marriage should be a requirement for a committed couple at all. I think the pressure to get married, for anyone, misses the point that it's the relationship(s) you construct that are important, not the socio-legal structure in which they occur. However, I also believe that marriage should be an available option for anyone in a consenting relationship, and thus DOMA needs to fall.

That's it for this week! I feel much happier just having written this post, and I hope you do too. Until next time!

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