Governor Christie ~ Is it Too Much to Ask That You Be Both Honest AND Respectful?

There are a few things that have been going on over here in Jersey during the Christie years that have driven me absolutely insane.  Actually, they’re not going on over here in Jersey, they’re going on in the media’s blind spot to my governor.

The other day I watched Governor Christie at his lengthy press conference.  In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that I didn’t make it through the entire thing.  Nearly two hours of watching someone explain why they deserve to be first person on the Titanic’s dinghies is a long time.  We got it.  You didn’t know.  You just heard.  You were working out.  (Not for nothin’, am I the only person who thought that remark was a particularly overworked piece of political theatre ~ wedged in there like a nun at [continue reading...]

January 11, 2014
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Dear Jonathan Capehart ~

I agree with you on many of the points you made in your Washington Post piece about Aaron Schock and I applaud you for reaching out to anyone with actual information that could turn his history of pro-bigotry voting into a history of hypocrisy.

But can you do me a favor?  Can you please not refer to coming out as “an intensely personal journey that involves stages of self-discovery and self-acceptance” as if it is an inherent part of being gay?  It is not.  The journey you refer to is about the shedding of shame.  And we are not born with shame, we are taught it.

If we are going to talk about that journey, however, then we need to discuss its origins.  It is rooted in anti-LGBT votes like the ones Rep. Aaron Shock has [continue reading...]

January 8, 2014
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Dear Governor Christie ~

Today is National Coming Out Day and I have a message for you:  I am gay, and I am boring.  I have led a productive, yet unremarkable life.  I share my unremarkable life with my husband, whom I had to marry in another state.  We are not front page kinds of people.  TMZ has never called me.  Unless something truly unexpected happens between now and the end of my life, my name will not grace the pages of our history books ~ certainly not if Texas has anything to do with it.

I am a performer, writer, activist ~ someone forever “following my passion” and “searching for my place in the world.”  After many successful years as a dancer, I hung up my jazz sneakers and began to search for a profession that could sustain [continue reading...]

October 11, 2013
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Dear Sheriff Wolfinger ~

Dear Sheriff Wolfinger ~

I came across your quote regarding the Boy Scouts lifting their ban on openly gay scouts under 18 in today’s blogosphere:

“It would be inappropriate for the sheriff’s office to sponsor an organization that is promoting a lifestyle that is in violation of state law,” Sheriff Ben Wolfinger said.

Sodomy is against the law in Idaho, he added.

Sheriff Wolfinger, I just couldn’t shake the feeling that you’re confused.  Very, very confused.

First of all, on June 26, 2003, the US Supreme Court struck down Idaho’s sodomy law in its landmark Lawrence v Texas decision.  Forgive me if I’m speaking out of turn here, but isn’t it pretty much your job to know the law?  I can only imagine that if your own job has you stumped, your head must be positively spinning by [continue reading...]

May 29, 2013
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A Thought for the Boy Scouts

Dear Boy Scouts,

I have already sent you my thoughts on your upcoming decision as to whether or not you should allow openly gay scouts and leaders into the Boy Scouts.

You should take a moment to read this short, powerful note from my husband, Richard Darst, a former scout.

I am a gay man.  The Boy Scouts was a big part of my life as a young boy.  Through the scouts I learned so many practical life skills like cooking and first aid.  But more importantly, I learned what it means to be an honest, caring, and involved citizen. I had many dedicated troop leaders, but it would have been wonderful had there been one to whom I could truly relate.  The Boy Scouts of America’s current policy regarding gay leaders saddens [continue reading...]

April 22, 2013
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Updated: Dear Boy Scouts of America ~ It’s Not About Banning Gay Scouts & Leaders, It’s About Banning Honesty

Let’s be clear, the policy debate you’re currently having is not about whether to continue your ban on gays in the Boy Scouts.  The debate you’re currently having is about whether to continue your ban on honesty and integrity within the Boy Scouts.

The simple truth is this:  there always have been gay scouts and leaders and there will always be gay scouts and leaders.  You can not ban them.  All you can do is enforce a policy that forces them to lie about who they are.

A few months ago, on this issue of honesty, you decided not to decide.  At least not just then.  In the statement you made to the press you called this an issue with a great deal of “complexity” and said that “the organization needs time for a [continue reading...]

April 21, 2013
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Dear Matt R. Salmon ~

I almost didn’t write this letter because it feels presumptuous.  It feels presumptuous to me to think I can see the pain and struggle in your eyes without knowing you after watching you on tv for three plus minutes.  And yet, I can’t stop thinking about you, Matt.  I can’t, because as presumptuous as it may be, I see what I see and it breaks my heart.  I want to hug you.  I want to protect you.  There’s so much I want to tell you.

I must first admit that I have no experience in familial rejection.  It pains me to say that we live in a world where I am excessively lucky.  I came out to my parents and my brother when I was 14 or 15 and over the course of the next few years we all learned a lot together.  Sometimes I led, sometimes [continue reading...]

April 13, 2013
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A Letter to Orrin Hatch

Yesterday, via The Randy Report, I came across this quote by Orrin Hatch regarding marriage equality:

“I’ll say this, I do believe this could be solved greatly by a civil-union law that would give gay people the same rights as married people,” said Hatch, who mentioned hospital visitations and tax benefits. “I think we can solve this problem without undermining the very basis of marital law in our country.”

Hatch said he doesn’t believe people choose to be gay, but “I draw the line on traditional marriage.”

Oh Orrin!

There’s so much to say, I don’t even know where to begin.  First of all, I think that at this point in history, witnessing the clear trajectory of LGBT civil rights, it is hilariously pompous and hysterically entertaining for you to let us know where you “draw the line.”  Orrin, I don’t know how [continue reading...]

April 9, 2013
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An Open Letter to Peter LaBarbera Regarding Keeping Marriage from the Gays Because Our Sex is Yucky

Dear Petey ~

Recently, you were a guest on Janet Mefferd’s radio talk show.  You and she discussed the marriage equality bill in Illinois.  During the course of this conversation you asked the (I’m guessing) rhetorical question:  “How do two guys consummate their marriage?

You then proceeded to answer the question yourself:  “Yuck.”

Oh, Pete!  This is your best shot?  Seriously?  After all your years spent in the trenches of professional hate-mongering, you’re reverting to the oldest anti-LGBT rhetoric?  Really had to reach to the back of the sock drawer for that one, huh?  You don’t want us to get married…because you think our sex…is yucky?  You’re using yuck as a legal argument ~ a legal, philosophical and moral argument ~ for creating and maintaining discriminatory laws?

Has your well run so dry ~ is [continue reading...]

March 10, 2013
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Dear Chris Culliver and All the Other Straight Men Who Fear that Gay Guys in the Locker Room Are Looking at You “That Way” ~

Let me spare you the suspense:  Yes.  Yes we are.

But you’re missing the silver lining.  Most of you are incredibly unattractive.  Truly.  On the whole, y’all have no idea how unattractive you are.  And since you’re not attracted to men yourselves and you’re too hung up on being labeled gay to even entertain the notion that another dude might be handsome, you simply have no idea what an attractive man might look like.  And trust me, an attractive man is not you.  I can not tell you the number of times I’ve been in a locker room with a guy taking off his clothes and thought to myself, “Oh, for the love of all that is good and holy, cover up.  With a towel.  Or a sheet.  A tarp.  Whatever.  Just cover. that. [continue reading...]

January 31, 2013
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