The advantage to being a lifelong Cubs fan is an apparently genetic propensity for not getting overly bent out of shape over absurdly long losing streaks. Be that as it may--and despite being rich with metaphors--baseball is not life, and my reaction to Maine voters last night overturning their state's nascent marriage equality law (making such ballot measures voted on by my fellow citizens 0-for-32 now) is about as far from wait 'til next year as you can get. It is more along the lines of if you voted for this latest round of bigotry, fuck you.
That's it. It's not a constructive reaction, nor is it polite, and I am utterly unapologetic. There is so much this morning I find disingenuous about this election, this campaign, this issue every goddamn time it comes up and "the people" slap it down. We patiently point out logical inconsistencies in the usual litany of arguments the anti-equality camp trots out like clockwork, parrying every sacred rite invented by God bleating with the availability of religion-free weddings in a courtroom, every procreation yelp with newlywed senior citizens and young but sterile folks, every marriage is a holy union you faggots can't handle with the high divorce rates among evangelicals, and it doesn't matter. When the organized bigotry industry can draw on the no-limit ATM that is the Mormon-Catholic alliance (second collection, anyone? before we have to sell the church, that is? last one out, shut off the lights, 'k?) and produce TV spot after TV spot hammering the same lies over and over to a population with the collective critical thinking abilities of a turnip on a five-day bender, nothing we do matters. Nothing.
Won't someone think of the children? Seriously? This still works? How does this still work? It works when someone agrees to pimp out his five-year-old to stare into the camera with Puss-n-Boots eyes and say daddy, the teacher told me in kindergarten today I have to marry a man. The children will be taught gay marriage. Oh, the vapors. Kindergarten will turn into Kindergaytown. It will be an all gay all the time curriculum. No reading or math or naptime. Just gay. Gay, gay, gay kindergarten and first grade and third grade. Because that would totally happen.
And it works. Every. Goddamn. Time.
Yeah, I think of the little kids. I think of the fact that all those grownup gay folks who want to get married in Maine were little kids themselves once, and they all turned out gay despite not hearing one peep about gays, married or otherwise, when they were in kindergarten. I think about the gay kids who are still killing themselves at a rate that is horrifyingly higher than their straight peers and wonder if hearing gay=normal in elementary school might have created an environment for them where they wouldn't feel so hopeless. Shit, I wonder if I had learned the first thing about lesbians in school that was more extensive and accurate than the single sentence if you're infatuated with another girl it's just a phase that will pass, I might not have spent my entire middle school and high school career feeling like an outsider without knowing why, never quite fitting in, always just different enough from everyone else to not be counted as anyone's best friend. It might not have taken me 31 years to figure out what my deal was, all the while noticing other women similar to myself and thinking wow, she looks a lot like me, I wonder if she catches a lot of shit too. And the perfectly nice guy I was married to for a while as a result would have been spared a world of hurt.
So I think of the children, and I think of the adults they've grown into, and I wonder how otherwise intelligent people like Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton can stand there with a straight face and say marriage is a question that should be left to the states. Because it is never just "left to the states" when a national organization based in another state pulls in piles of money from even other states and buys airtime and flies their mouthpieces from yet other states into the target state to spread as many lies and as much fear as necessary to change laws to their liking and leave their muddy footprints on the lives of people they have never met and will never see, in a state they will likely never set foot in again once their meddling is complete and their crowing is over.
So please, spare me this morning the too-familiar platitudes about how these votes are just getting closer and closer, as if losing by six percentage points instead of sixty makes it a lower-case loss instead of an upper-case LOSS, as if it makes a bit of difference in the real legislative world or in the lives of couples who apparently are supposed to shrug and smile and say well, honey, we're not quite as second-class citizens as we used to be! Maybe next year!
Fuck next year. Bring on the ban-divorce ballot measures, because I will totally vote for that shit to protect sacred marriage and guarantee every child a mother and father at home. Hey, I got mine, so fuck y'all. That's the American way.