Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A Big Gay Night

Last night was a big night for LGBTs.  Same sex marriage rights WON in 2 states, Maine and Maryland.  The vote remains too close to call in Washington.  Voters in Minnesota rejected a constitutional amendment to ban same sex marriage. This is a tectonic shift of the continental plates on gay issues.  It is hard to overstate the magnitude of this change.
I'm a middle aged dude a month away from turning 55 and becoming eligible for some senior discounts.  I can remember Anita Bryant's resounding victory in 1977 when voters in Dade County, Florida repealed local civil rights protections for gays and lesbians from discrimination in employment and housing by a landslide.  Every time gay rights initiatives went on the ballot, they lost; though those of us paying attention noticed that these measures were losing by ever smaller margins each election cycle.  An election victory in one state would have been more than enough to break the logjam, but two? ... WOW!

Perhaps the biggest victory of all was Obama's re-election which now institutionalizes major changes like the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell and making the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act more likely.  We were among those who had the most at stake in this election.

What's doubly satisfying is that our enemies started all of this.  They put all these initiatives on the ballot convinced that the voters would vindicate them.  Those same voters threw a bucket of ice water in their faces.

Tammy Baldwin defeated Tommy Thompson to become the first openly gay US Senator.

Iowa Supreme Court Justice David Wiggins easily prevailed against a determined effort to defeat him by NOM and the Family Research Council.

Sean Patrick Maloney, an openly gay former Clinton Administration staffer, unseated Teabagger Nan Hayworth from the US House.

Openly gay House Representative Jared Polis won a third term.

God, gods, and goddesses willing, we may be watching the beginning of the end of homophobia as a political force.















EXTRA:

Have a mimosa...









UPDATE:

AFER and Washington United are saying that marriage equality won in Washington State, but there is still no official word from the Secretary of State's office.


FURTHER UPDATE:

According to Molly Ball at The Atlantic, Election Night was a grand slam for gay rights.  The popular vote in all 4 states was a win, and by comfortable 4 to 6 point margins.





3 comments:

Counterlight said...

Truckloads-o-champagne! Mimosas for everybody!

JCF said...

Washington State has vote-by-mail, so it takes a while to count. I have Zero doubts that marriage equality won there (even if I'm ambivalent over the fact that I'm So Certain, because of its being the Least Religious state in the nation :-/).

O Happy Gay!

Ciss B said...

JCF,
I so agree! This is such a blessing to see come in my life time!