Before We Come Out, We Must First Go In

Considering the picture above, it’s a wonder how I was ever successfully in the closet. But, with the exception of the kids at school who called me a faggot, I think I was. Coming out, something I did slowly over the span of a few years, freed me, as it frees everyone who does it.

But the fact that we have a closet to come out of, the fact that a closet still exists, is a big, giant flashing sign that for all of our breathtaking gains, we have a lot more work to do.

The very idea of coming out implies that there was a going in. It’s a moment that for many of us occurs before conscious awareness, before understanding, before we even have words for it. And it demonstrates that we, as gay kids, have received the message that to stay safe, we must lie ~ that what we [continue reading...]

October 11, 2014
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An Everyday Choice

Below is a piece I was commissioned to write for Amtrak’s Ride with Pride series.

The piece just went live and I think the timing is perfect…right before National Coming Out Day.

ENJOY!!!

Coming out is more than making that one big announcement. It’s an everyday choice. Every time we meet a new person or find ourselves in a new situation, there’s a choice. This is a part of LGBT lives that straight people likely don’t even know exists. Sure, straight people reveal personal information every time they talk about themselves, but they probably don’t pause as often to weigh the cost of doing so. The speed bump at that interview when we consider if using the correct pronoun might cost us a job. A catch in the throat as we wonder if telling the truth might put us in danger. The nanosecond between synapse and tongue when a million variables are weighed [continue reading...]

October 8, 2014
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When a Wedding Aisle Becomes a Line in the Sand

I have written before about how Rick and I have gotten married quite a few times, the first time being on June 24, 2000.  What I haven’t written about were the family members who conscientiously objected to our wedding. Bigotry and ignorance, given the sheen of legitimacy by calling them religion, prevented my mother’s first cousin’s wife from sharing in our joy that day. She felt that she could not witness our union – that she could not celebrate with us. Her husband, my mother’s first cousin, stood with his wife. They did not attend our wedding. They did not RSVP the invitation. They sent us neither a gift nor even a note of congratulations. Nothing…(Click to read the full post on VillageQ.)

August 30, 2014
Featured Posts, Inside Voice, Uncategorized
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Jack McFarland Is a Faggot and So Am I

Several times a week people tell me I look like Sean Hayes. The conversation usually goes something like this:

Random person: You remind me of that guy from Will & Grace.

Me: Sean Hayes? (Blank stare.) Jack? Just Jack! (I make Just Jack hands.)

Random person: Yeah. No offense.

No offense.

It’s always there.

Why?

Let’s break it down into two parts, shall we?…(click to read the full post of VillageQ.)

August 30, 2014
Arts & Entertainment, Current Events/Pop Culture/Politics, Featured Posts, Inside Voice
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Fanboy Thanks a Hero

I’ve written before about the differences I felt in the experience of growing up Jewish and growing up gay.

As a Jewish kid I had a bris, was sent to Hebrew school and had a Bar Mitzvah. My cultural identity was passed on to me at the dinner table with the kugel. My pride in that identity was handed to me in books, movies, heroes. Sandy Koufax! (Also, Sandy was left-handed. See, left-handed Jews can do anything!) It seeped through the very pores of my house. It was something my family shared and that my parents found not just important to pass on to us (me and my brother), but something absolutely necessary to our upbringing ~ to the composition of our characters ~ to the men they wanted us to become. And frankly, it wasn’t just important to them, it was necessary for them. Necessary for them to know they [continue reading...]

July 21, 2014
Featured Posts, Inside Voice
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Listen to Your Mother ~ I Love You Anyway

Below is the piece I wrote and read for North Jersey’s inaugural production of Listen to Your Mother.

I am so very proud to have been a part of this remarkable group of writers, artists, moms, people. Click here to see the other pieces that were read/shared in the show. It was truly a remarkable piece of theater. If you get a chance to see a production of Listen to Your Mother next Mother’s Day, go! It is an incredible experience.

 

I Love You Anyway

I love you anyway.

That was my mother’s reaction when I came out of the closet.  I was 13, maybe 14.

It was the best she had at the time.  It would be years before she would begin to understand how those words were almost perfect.  Nearly.  But perfect [continue reading...]

July 9, 2014
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The Real Reason Amy Kushnir is Upset

Dear Amy Kushnir, Duck Dynasty cretins, Benham brothers, Adam Carolla, and every other human being who has ever squealed about their First Amendment rights being taken or lamented the rise of the Gaystapo, the Gay Mafia, or the Gay Thought Police or who has worried about the rise of “gaytheism.” (Personally, I love “gaytheism” and intend to use it to describe my own personal religious views.)

This letter goes out to all of you ~

The reason you’re angry is quite simple, and understandable really. In a sense, I feel bad for you, because your world has changed so radically, shifted so quickly, so thoroughly, that you don’t know which end is up.

The shift I’m referring to is that your LGBT bigotry is no longer a monologue. When you speak, when you spew your bile, we are no [continue reading...]

May 22, 2014
All, Current Events/Pop Culture/Politics, Featured Posts, Inside Voice, Write the Power
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Michael Sam Steps Up As Maggie Gallagher Steps Down

Recently, Maggie Gallagher, one of the most vocal proponents of the anti-equality movement, gave up fighting the Purple Menace, Arkansas became the first southern state in the nation to figure out that equality actually means equality for all people, and that includes LGBT people, and Michael Sam, in what is arguably the most important recent development in our march towards equality if for no other reason than the stereotype shattering symbolism, broke through that purple ceiling by becoming the first openly gay player to be drafted into the NFL.

We are winning. And nothing could make this fact plainer than the image of Sam stepping up as Gallagher steps down.

If I may be so presumptuous, I’m going to explain why our opponents are losing. There is one small detail that they routinely overlook. They miss it time and time again. It’s in their demeanor. It’s [continue reading...]

May 11, 2014
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A Master Class in Successful Adultery for Congress

I am excited to announce that I recently became a contributing writer for VillageQ, a great site “where queer meets family”.

Today, my first piece was posted!

Click A Master Class in Successful Adultery for Congress to read it.

Feel free to share!

Thanks,

~r

April 18, 2014
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Brendan Eich & Mozilla ~ We’re Right

In the past week, the gay blogosphere has exploded with the news of Brendan Eich’s resignation as CEO of Mozilla, supposedly due to a 2008 donation to Prop 8.  Andrew Sullivan lit the fuse when he posted The Hounding Of A Heretic on his blog, a scathing review of the evil gay fanatics that forced the departure:

Will [Eich] now be forced to walk through the streets in shame? Why not the stocks? The whole episode disgusts me – as it should disgust anyone interested in a tolerant and diverse society. If this is the gay rights movement today – hounding our opponents with a fanaticism more like the religious right than anyone else – then count me out. If we are about intimidating the free speech of others, we [continue reading...]

April 7, 2014
Current Events/Pop Culture/Politics, Featured Posts, Uncategorized
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