No Freedom ’til We’re Equal.

A slightly terrifying fact has recently come to my attention: I am now the same age that my father was when he proposed to my mother. They met and fell in love while attending college in Louisiana. Afterward, my mother moved back to her home state of Florida to attend law school while my father commuted to a job on Capitol Hill from his new home in Virginia. They were married in Tampa Bay, Florida on May 31st, 1981. After my mother graduated, they settled down in Virginia, where they raised three (gorgeous, talented, intelligent, awesome) kids and have remained in all the years since. They’ve been married for almost 32 years, and, if all goes according to plan, will remain that way until they die. They’ll be able to visit each other in the hospital, inherit what is legally due to them, and will have benefited for decades from hundreds of rights, privileges, and benefits afforded to them by virtue of being a married couple in the eyes of both their state and their country. They’ll have had rights that they never took advantage of and maybe some that they never even knew or thought about, like most married couples. Because that’s how this country’s government works.

When my dad proposed to my mom all those years ago, I doubt either of them thought much about the possibility of having a kid who would someday be their age, over three decades later in the year 2012, and that he would be a second class citizen of the country in which he was born and raised. I don’t think it occurred to them that they would have a son who, through no fault of his own, would be denied the same rights that they had taken for granted. But that’s exactly what’s happened.

I remember vividly the night that New York passed The Marriage Equality Act in June 2011. Max and I took the subway into the West Village and joined the celebration outside of the Stonewall Inn. We shook hands, hugged strangers, took pictures, bought a polyester rainbow flag (or was it given to us?), and let ourselves feel the weight of what New York had accomplished. Neither of us had ever been close to getting married ourselves—had never personally felt the sting of being told we couldn’t—but still I remember the feeling on the subway ride back home. There was a certain lightness, an indescribable feeling of knowing that our city—our state—regarded us as equals. We were finally granted the same respect that had always been reserved only for our straight peers. It meant that we weren’t outliers, that we weren’t hated, or disparaged, or better off hiding who we were. We were—we are—people, just like everybody else.

I want everybody in this country to have the same feeling I felt that night, and continue to feel as a person lucky enough to live in New York. Unfortunately, it only takes a trip to my home in Virginia, or down to visit my grandmother in Florida, or to any of the 43 states that have legislated away my access to basic civil rights to be reminded of how far we have to go as a nation.

I have yet to hear an argument against gay marriage that is not steeped in bigotry, hate, or often masked by religion. As much as Republicans would like to rewrite history, as often as their vice presidential nominee wants to say “I don’t see how a person can separate their public life from their private life or their faith,” this is not a Christian nation. Our laws and institutions are pointedly and purposefully separate from religion. Nobody is suggesting that your place of worship or religious leader has to perform a gay marriage. The request is simple: to have the same rights under the law. Separate is not equal, and anything less will not do.

I know people who are voting for Republicans. Some of these people I even count as friends. When I talk to them about it, the general response seems to be that they don’t “personally” support discrimination, even if discrimination is central to Republican social policy. Let me be clear: there is nothing more personal than a vote. By voting for Mitt Romney, you are casting a vote for discrimination. You are casting a vote against me, against my family, against equality, against fairness, against love, against freedom, against the promise of liberty and justice for all. A vote for this Republican party, as it stands in 2012, is a vote for discrimination. You are complicit in it, you are supporting it, you are perpetuating it. There is no other way to look at it, and it’s truly heartbreaking to see people I otherwise respect blind to this fact.

The choice in this election couldn’t be clearer, and not just on this issue. It’s the difference between a president who cares about the future of our education system, our public sector workers, and the social programs that attempt to keep those in need afloat, versus a party who doesn’t. It’s the difference between a president who has regained much of our respect in the world and has a proven record of successful foreign policy experience, versus a candidate with no experience, Bush’s foreign policy advisors, and reckless and wildly inconsistent ideas about the rest of the world. It’s the difference between a president who supports rights for women to receive equal pay for equal work, to have access to contraception, and to seek a safe and legal abortion if necessary, versus a party who would deny all of these rights. It’s a choice between a President who has dug this economy out of the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression versus a party who wants to return to the policies that caused the collapse in the first place. It’s the choice between a president who regards global warming as a real and tangible threat versus a party who thinks the climate change is a hoax, a joke, or both. It’s the difference between a president who doesn’t think you should go broke or die because of medical costs, versus a party that sees only the bottom line for the insurance industry. It’s the choice between a president who believes in equality versus a party who believes so profoundly in discrimination that they would amend our Constitution to reflect their extreme ideology. And that’s just off the top of my head.

To be clear, President Obama still supports states in legislating their own marriage laws, as ridiculous as that proposition is. His personal support for marriage equality does not actually represent a tangible shift in policy positions. Still, I’m not sure I can describe to a straight person how invaluable it is to have somebody in the White House who acknowledges me, who respects me, who stands in support of my rights where so many others have sat down or gone on the attack. Obama is an advocate and an ally for the gay community, and I am proud to call him my president as a gay American. An Obama presidency is not the answer, but it’s a pretty damn good place to start.

So please, go vote on Tuesday. Even if you think your vote doesn’t matter, if you don’t live in a swing state or you’ve never voted before, please vote. If you live in Washington or Maine or Maryland or Minnesota, please vote. Vote for me. Vote for my family—present and future. Vote for me to someday have the same rights as my parents. To have the same rights as you. Stand up against inequality, and stand with a president who has done the same.

Please.

OK, this video made me weepy. If you would like to donate for Washington state’s Referendum 74 for marriage equality, please go here.

If you would like to make a difference in this presidential election, here’s a pretty awesome, fun, and free way to do it.

Back to regularly scheduled programming next week.

Life
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231 Comments

  1. Macklemore, Ryan Lewis and Mary Lambert make this Seattle girl proud. Already checked the YES box on my ballot – I got a lot of weddings waiting in the wings.

  2. You and Max are pretty much the cutest ever in those photos.

  3. Thank you for a well written post! Someday…and for now, vote.

  4. Not surprised to hear your endorsement but wonderful to read it anyway. Fingers crossed for Tuesday that this country continues moving in the right direction and re-elects Obama. (Plus, he likes dogs and Parks and Recreation.)

  5. Absolutely amazing post. One of my beloved sisters is gay and has chosen to wait to marry her amazing girlfriend until they can get married in the state they grew up in and fell in love in. We all live in Michigan, and unfortunately that is not the case yet, but I know it will be in my lifetime. Here’s to another 4 years with President Obama, and hopefully another step towards the equality that everyone deserves. Love your blog btw :)

  6. I love your blog and your well-written posts! Keep it up :)

  7. I am a long time lurker but I felt compelled to comment. This post was beautiful and brought tears to my eyes. so much so that it became difficult to read. As a Maryland resident, I will be voting for President Obama and “for ” Question 6 on marriage equality.

    Thank you.

  8. As a Washington girl, I’ve already voted (we do all of our voting by mail now). And you can sure as hell bet that the first thing I did when getting my ballot was approve Ref 74.

  9. Fingers crossed that Washington (state) approves Ref. 74.

  10. It may be worth mentioning that if you download that Macklemore & Ryan Lewis song, 100% of the proceeds go to Approve Ref 74 for Marriage Equality in Washington. We’re in the homestretch before election day, and the polls are indicating that it’ll be tight.

  11. This is so important.

    The tides are changing all over the world. I think you would enjoy/sob mercilessly throughout this video for an Australian campaign: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=_TBd-UCwVAY

  12. Whenever I take a second to think about a woman’s reproductive rights or marriage equality, I wonder why in the world we are all arguing. What difference should it make to Mitt Romney or Paul Ryan if you get married or I have an abortion? None. None at all. Those should be our decisions to make.

    The way the Republican party mixes religion and policy in this campaign frightens me.

    I may not be on board with everything the Democratic party has done, but I have no doubt in my mind that I will be voting for Obama come election day. If we are not free to make these most personal of decisions, how can we possibly come together to move forward?

  13. Daniel-you are the model for all citizens, and for those of us who look to the youth for hope and a clear vision. With folks like you leading the brigade, surely all will “hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” So thrilled you are living the dream our forefathers envisioned. Never have I been more proud of you.

  14. This is beautiful, and I cannot wait to be able to be proud of a country that treats my family and friends like they are whole, deserving people. It has to happen in our lifetime. I will go to my grave fighting for civil rights for ALL. Government has no place in love, but if it must be there, it must treat all love equally.

  15. Thank you for this beautiful post (I too was teary).
    It is so important, thank you for calling people out on it.

  16. I really hope people take up their option to vote and show how important this is. Unfortunately even though it is compulsory to vote in Australia, neither major political has the decency to correct our marriage act, it degrades all marriage to separate by sexuality.
    And Tyson is right the video he linked to is incredibly moving, just not moving enough for the bigots in Aus. government.

  17. One more vote for Obama from this swing-stater. Really hoping someday the idea of running on an anti-gay platform will be looked at as absurd, no matter which political party you subscribe to.

  18. This made me cry. Thank you for sharing. X

    • Yes, I have seen that (and posted it to the Manhattan Nest Facebook page a few days ago)! I like it, of course, but the one thing I take *slight* issue with is the suggestion that taxes and take home pay will be better in a Romney presidency. Nobody really knows the specifics of his economic policy, and there is no real indication (other than what he says) that the economy would improve any faster, the middle class would be better off, or that pesky 47% would see any policy aimed at improving their lives. The choice in this election IS NOT between a good economy and equality, so I tend to find rhetoric that suggests that it is a little misleading. You can vote for good (or, at least, better) economic policy AND a step toward equal rights.

      • Yes, absolutely agreed – I mean, the people I know who are voting for Romney are people who have money and whose focus on taxes is mainly in the sense of not wanting to pay more taxes themselves … which is, um, not really what I would call an economic vision that is at all sustainable or at all bodes well for the country as a whole.

  19. I had a very similar feeling when I attended the March on Washington in 1993. It was magical.

  20. Awesome post. I’m a long time reader, and this was he most heartfelt and moving piece you have written.

    I will never understand how people can justify a vote for such a bigoted, hateful party. I hope for the best this Tuesday, for all Americans, not just straight, white, rich white men.

  21. I’m a legal alien here in the US (‘take me to your leader’) so I can’t vote. But when I first moved to the States in 1996, I was amazed at the gay prejudice. I’m astonished that it still exists all these years later. In America people really care about who lives together? Who sleeps together? Isn’t that just a bit weird? Try explaining it to a visiting Martian. Doesn’t America have anything else to worry about? Weird indeed.

    People are people. Live with it.

  22. This post brought tears to my eyes. Proudly voted here in Chicago for “B. Obama, J. Biden” yesterday. Here’s hoping.

  23. amen.

  24. YES! Beautiful and powerful Dan.

  25. Amazing post, thank you. I wish everyone could read this before stepping into the voter box.

  26. I couldn’t have said this better myself.

    Thank you for having the courage to share this with us.

  27. Thank you for putting into words what I feel so deeply but have such a hard time to explaining to many where I live here in Nebraska. I’ve shared it on my facebook in the hopes that I can reach at least one of my friends who is on the fence with your powerful words.

  28. I live in Seattle and already voted YESYESYESYESYES on R74. It’s not right to have a basic civil right decided by popular vote in this piecemeal fashion- it needs to be grated on the federal level, outright and without apology.

    Still, I will be waiting on pins & needles election night – I want to be proud to live in WA State!

    • You’re exactly right—the civil rights of others should never been put to a popular opinion vote. It makes absolutely no sense, and it’s ridiculous to leave it up to states. A gay couple in Alabama experiences the same loves as a gay couple in New York, and it’s an abomination that this country allows them to have different rights. Imagine if we had done this with segregation.

      I think the fact that polling data over the last several years favors marriage equality but that data is not supported by popular votes pretty much sums up the problem. People know that their views are bigoted and wrong, but that doesn’t stop them from expressing them in a voting booth even if they won’t say them to a poll worker. It’s fucked up.

  29. I found myself agreeing out loud with every point you made in this post. You are absolutely right! As a Minnesota resident, I will be checking “NO” on the amendment to our state’s constitution. This is a terrifying election, I can’t even fathom having a man like Mitt Romney in the White House. It’s so great to see young people like you and I caring so deeply about what we’re facing as Americans and standing up to say something about it.

  30. there is no rational, logical argument against letting people of the same sex marry one another.not one. I feel that the good people of my home state (WA) will come through. I don’t live there anymore but I sure as hell would be proudly casting my vote in favor. I am not sure why anyone would want to get married (pretty much everyone in my family has been divorced at least once) but EVERYONE should have the option. it’s just basic human rights.

    Macklemore is the shiz. Seattle represent! don’t know if you’ve seen this one, but I feel you would enjoy it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QK8mJJJvaes

    • Yes, I have! I thought it was hilarious and was SO CONFUSED when I realized the Same Love video was by the same people!

  31. That video made you weepy? Well you made me weepy! I’ve got your back. Voting for Obama and as soon as the opportunity to vote for marriage equality comes to Oregon I’m voting for that. In the meantime, I’m not shutting up about marriage equality!

  32. Bravo, Daniel! What an amazing post; I was in tears. As others have said, I wish everyone could read this before heading to their polling station.

  33. There is no legit argument against gay marriage. Period. And there is no legit reason for denying women the access to contraception or to have an abortion. I will never understand that there are people out there who care more about how much taxes they pay than these fundamental rights!?

  34. Thank you for writing this. I am in Minneapolis and will be voting for marriage equality on Tuesday. This is the civil rights movement of our era.

  35. When I see the injustices that we all still face in this country, it makes me so angry. As a woman and an atheist, I feel like shaking someone. I’m baffled and straight up offended by the way that church and state are so closely connect in this day and age. (We also forget what the rest of the country is like from our NYC bubble.) My opinions of the people that I personally know that are voting for Romney have lowered considerably.

    All this being said, I’ve already sent in my ballot. I’m so proud to say that I will be voting for Barack Obama once again. I wish I could give him a hug because I feel like he’s done so much for me personally. Forward!

  36. Ok, I’m 57 years old and, for the life of me, I cannot understand why this should still be an issue for ANYONE. I am sickened by the small-minded people who are using religion to back up every small-minded, bigoted, hateful idea in their tiny little minds. FUCK religion and the horse it rode in on. Sorry to be so strident but I am sick to death of these idiots using religion as their defacto reason for anything they find personally repugnant. The rest of the world should not have to be in lockstep to their fears. If there are people who are against gay marriage, well then, maybe they shouldn’t marry someone of the same sex but, for god’s sake, leave the rest of the world alone! IT SHOULDN’T MATTER. So, there. That’s why I’m voting “YES” for prop 6 in Maryland.

    • While I tend to personally agree, I don’t want to demonize religion, here. Religion in and of itself may be useful for some people, and I don’t think being a religious person equates to being a bigoted or narrow-minded person.

      The issue, as you’re pointing out, is when it enters our politics. Frankly, I’d rather have people holding bigoted religious views privately than dispensing the more “acceptable” public arguments against gay marriage—i.e. that is somehow degrades the “institution” of marriage, that gay people are a threat to families or to children, all of it backed up by false and extremely damaging “research.” If you really think your god does not support my freedom to love who I love, that’s really not my problem, but I draw the line when that religious argument enters the public sphere in such flagrantly untrue and bigoted ways.

      • Very well said Daniel. You put it much nicer than I did. The frightening thing is how religion has become enmeshed into politics. That’s what has to stop. Also, the whole “institution of marriage” argument is totally without validity. These people need to look more carefully at 1) history and 2) their bible to see just what marriage has meant and how it was used through the ages. I would also have no problem with civil unions if they were granted the full federal coverage that marriage enjoys. It is obscene that an entire group of people are denied basic rights just because of another group’s personal, unfounded fears.

  37. Daniel,
    I love all your posts… I’ll admit I started reading your blog years ago, when you were just blogging about home renovation/creating awesome stuff.. but I also love the change your blog has taken.
    This post speaks right to my heart. I’m not gay, but I strongly believe in equality for all. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, your emotions on this.. and that gorgeous song, which I’d never heard before. It’s now on my iPod. :)

    No freedom til we’re equal…
    Damn right I support it.

    -C

  38. Fabulous post! Thanks for writing it.

  39. …and while I’m on the subject, I think atheist pig says it best: http://www.theatheistpig.com/2012/05/16/05-16-2012/

  40. What a lovely video. Now get out there and vote people! We Canadians are nervously watching the run-up to the election and, well, that Mitt dude is scaring the pants off a whole bunch of us. Yikes! We’d vote against him if we could!

  41. thanks for this post. i read it three times.
    i’m canadian, and so proud that gay marriage is legal in the majority of the country (8/10 provinces, and 1/3 territories).
    wishing i could vote for president… for non-ignorance… for human rights and for freedom.

    • I’m Canadian too, Melissa, and I need to (happily!) correct you – same sex marriage is legal EVERYWHERE in Canada. It is federal law, and thankfully, we didn’t leave it up to the provinces to decide!

      • Thankfully the Supreme Court was thinking clearly on that one! And in overruling our abortion laws in the 1980s. As a (straight, atheist) Canadian, I sincerely hope Obama wins again – Mitt Romney and his outdated, religion-based social policy scares me.

        And Daniel, you said everything I feel and cannot articulate (and sadly can’t vote for).

  42. Tonight I’m a straight girl having the best time of my life at a pre wedding bonfire in New Hampshire for a wedding of my gay friends L and S. I’ve been so blessed to have so many straight, gay and in between friends who’ve celebrated their lives together. I’m lucky enough to live in MA where gay marriage us legal and most people are accepting. I have a hard time imagining it any other way. All the best to you and Max. I wish you the most happiness.

  43. This from a nearly 70 year old straight woman from Virginia: You absolutely rock!

    And your parents are adorable and you and Max are adorable and Mekko and Linus are adorable!

    This is only the second election in all the presidential elections in which I have voted (very one since I was 21) that I will vote FOR a candidate rather than against the worse candidate. The first time was four years ago.

    YES WE CAN!

  44. I’ve always loved your blog, and really, your bravery just makes me love you more. I grew up with two loving parents – who happened to both be women. :) I count myself absolutely blessed to have had two amazing mothers, two amazing people who loved, supported, and pushed me to be a good person. You are right – voting is absolutely personal, and I’ll forever vote for families like mine and yours!

  45. That video made me weepy, too. I think just about every single proposal/marriage on the planet brings me chills and makes me tear up, doesn’t matter the gender, race, or species probably. If dogs could propose to each other, that would probably make me cry too.

    Totally support you and your cutie bf, and all other lovers out there.

    • PS-the Manhattan Movers (I think that’s the company?) always have the best billboards and I saw one along the FDR that said “If you don’t like gay marriage, don’t get gay-married.” It made me laugh. :)

  46. I live in Maryland and can’t wait to do the honor of voting for equality on Tuesday.
    <3

  47. Definitely voting for Obama come Tuesday. I am Hispanic and have dealt with bigotry from rich white men so I know that if Romney was to be voted in all hell would break lose with all the crackpot ideologies he would implement.

    • I agree, and I apologize for not including immigration (not to mention racism) in my critique of the Republican policy agenda.

  48. THIS. THIS, THIS, THIS.

    I’ll be voting with you, my dearest, dearest brother, and so many others in mind. Wise or not, the economy and taxes and foreign policy and everything else are secondary for me.

    • I think people can prioritize their voting however they want to, but I’ll also say that even if the economy, taxes, and foreign policy WERE your first concerns, Obama would still be your guy. (unless maybe you’re a very wealthy old white man, but I’m guessing you’re not!)

      • Oh, I definitely agree. I’m the exact opposite of an old white man, so I’m with Obama on all of the above (plus more).

  49. Today, I voted for you and your right to love and happiness and equality. Today, I voted for the under served, the survivors of rape, the minorities, the elderly, the children, the opinionated and the confused. And I voted for everyone in between to have a right to just be “in between”.

    You’re right Daniel, the choice is clear. Vote for the freedom to live without fear of persecution by your own government. Vote for the right to love.

  50. Hey! Just want to say I am in MN and voting for Obama, voting NO to that stupid constitutional amendment (wish I could vote YES to legalizing marriage for all and not just NO to “defining” marriage) and as a side note also voting NO to voter id which is a whole other issue.

    Ugh. Can’t imagine Romney in office. Ugh.

  51. Well said. Thank you.

  52. Bravo. Beautifully written.

  53. So great Daniel, I’m glad you wrote this.

    (And, side note – I love how you totally look like both of your parents!)

    I’ve got a good feeling about Washington State…

  54. Well said, sir. Well said.

    I’m intrigued to see what happens in your country in the next few weeks. I still don’t understand how such a huge number of people can be so blindly one sided and un-modern in their views and thinking. And just so… HATE filled.

    I sincerely hope in my heart that things go the right way.

    - R.

    PS : Go Nets.

    • That is the really astounding thing in the States, too. It’s just impossible for me to see the attraction in rallying around a party where hate seems to be so central to their ideas and rhetoric. I’ll never understand it, and I’ve yet to encounter a Republican who can articulate it for me.

  55. So very well written. My fingers are crossed for my American pals. I feel very fortunate and proud to live in Canada for our LGBT rights.

  56. One day our Grandkids will ask why this was such an issue, why some people had such a hard time accepting other people for who they are.

    I started reading your blog because I liked the pretty things you did. I keep reading it because the peek you give us into your happy home with you two and the dogs is so full of joy it radiates off the screen (and the pretty things are still pretty great) There’s no reason on Earth that you and Max can’t be equal as my husband and I in every way.

    I’m hoping our Prop 8 here in California gets to the Supreme Court and its outcome is a landmark decision that puts this ridiculous inequality to bed at last.

    Vote like your freedom depends on it because it actually might!

  57. This made me cry. Like, literally; I look ridiculous sitting here with mascara running down my face. I am active in politics, but with all of the crap that surrounds it — most especially during a presidential election — it is easy for things to become abstract. Thank you for reminding me what I’m fighting for. I hope that our country can lay to rest its antiquated ideas about legislating love. I hope you get the same opportunities as your adorable parents.

    I found this blog because I wanted to upholster a bed. I kept reading it because you’re just so authentic and charming, well, how could I not? I still haven’t completed (or started) the bed, but maybe more adventures of you, Max, and the babies will inspire me to finish!

  58. What a post. I wish I was a US citizen so I could cast one more vote for Obama. Living in the UK with the current Conservative govt has really proved your point that whilst the best option (Obama/The Labour Party) isn’t always going to fix everything it is indeed a good place to start. The UK is being ruined by Conservative policies all because we gave up on the Labour Party and are now rooing the day. I have everything crossed for next week.

  59. Yay,fantastic. Im sharing a link to this because it is so wonderful and you are fabulous and articulate and splendid and deserve to have access to the same rights as every other person in your country.

  60. I have followed your blog for the longest time, but this post is undoubtedly the most powerful and beautifully written of them all. Every American should have the drive that you possess so that we can all collectively make a difference. I do not live in a swing state but, because of you, when I go vote on Tuesday my confidence in my decision will be that much more secured. Thank you :)

  61. I’m so happy, and more than a little bit surprised, that all the comments thus far have been positive. I have lots of friends who have posted similar sentiments on facebook and twitter the last month, and invariably someone shows up to say how offended they are, that they aren’t *personally* against same-sex marriage, and that it’s just one issue. Maybe because I’m from Kansas, where we amended our constitution in 2005 to ban same-sex marriage, and even some Democrats in the state legislature are vocally supportive of LGBT discrimination. So kudos to the commenters for not being assholes and douchebags.

    • Yes, I’m very lucky (for the most part) when it comes to commenters! I don’t think most people are looking to go head-to-head on LGBT rights with a gay person, haha, and hopefully I’ve weeded out the rotten apples with my obvious big gay agenda.

  62. I echo the sentiments of all previous comments – that this should be a non-issue. We (globally) are debating a topic that has its roots in love – a trait encouraged in the human race! Nonsense. It’s about time churches stop claiming ownership of marriage and the governments of the world stop pandering to groups that do not represent the collective whole.
    As a hetero, white, Catholic, wife and mother of two little kids, this may be an issue one of my kids might have to deal with when they’re older. But I hope not. I hope the world gets its shit together by then.
    Fingers crossed for you for the upcoming elections.
    xxx

  63. Great post! Of course, I agree with you – I live in a state where same-sex marriage has been legal for several years now and hope that other states and the Federal government come to their senses soon. I do feel compelled to point out that, in a positive humorous way, that I laughed out loud when I read that it was not simply a rainbow flag that you acquired on the streets of West Village, but a “polyester” one. <3

  64. Daniel, such a powerful post; I’d go vote for you….
    Come live in Portugal :) We’re a small country, with so much economic problems, but we were the first country to abolish death penalty, also the first to abolish slavery and everybody can get married here with equal rights. I love my country despite all.
    Be happy!

  65. Yes, a thousand times yes! The choice is clear this election, either your a decent human or an ass.
    All the best for you and Max.

  66. You’ve had so many of us in tears with your eloquent, thoughtful, honest post. Thanks for being brave enough to send out into the world the words everyone needs to hear. I’m Voting in MN on Tuesday for equality for all – for freedom of choice for my 4 daughters, for you, for all of us. My 18 year old has the privilege of voting for the first time in this election – a powerful time to enter into adulthood and become another voice for equality! Best Wishes to you and your sweet family!

  67. thank you.
    reposted this video and the link to your beautifully written words for action, as well.

    here’s hoping.

  68. fantastic post, dan! really wonderfully said
    hope to see you at school soon (transport permitting!!)

  69. Same-Sex marriage isn’t legal in my state. Not yet. But, as someone who’s goal is to commission into the United States Air Force, I remember how good it felt when Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was repealed. That was a fantastic day. Not only could I join my beloved Air Force, I could do it while being myself. Before, being outed meant a dishonorable discharge. I don’t know how familiar you are with the military, but a dishonorable discharge is more than being fired. It would keep me from ever getting a job anywhere else. Ever. I’ve heard tell of folks getting a job after such an event, but it’s really really rare.

    Be that as it may, DOMA still prevents me from taking care of my family like straight Airmen can, but I’m hoping it’s just a matter of time before that’s gone too.

    When people say it’s only one issue, I pretty much know they’re straight. It’s not just “one” issue for me. It’s my entire life and livelihood. I wouldn’t be able to take my sick wife to a military hospital and she wouldn’t be eligible for healthcare. She might not even be able to live on base with me and we probably wouldn’t be able to qualify for off-base housing allowance. If, God forbid, something were to happen to me on deployment, she wouldn’t be notified of my death. And she wouldn’t be able to receive my life insurance payout in that event. Repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell opened up a lot of doors, but it’s not enough.

    Thanks for your post. <3

    • Thank you so much for your comment. Repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was such a huge step in the right direction, and done under so much political pressure to leave the policy in place. You’re very right that it’s not enough, but yes—a huge step in the right direction.

      Thank you again and again for your service to our country, and for bringing up so many of the issues that I have yet to, and hopefully will never encounter. I don’t think people think about the very real consequences of this issue in our country (and that marriage isn’t just a word), or think about the fact that often the people who sacrifice the most for all of us also have to suffer under the most inequality and injustice. Thank you.

    • Astrogal, I admire your commitment to do the right thing, towards your country and towards your wife and family. I hope for you that things fall into place for you and your loved ones. Have a wonderful day!!!

  70. I’m really offended by this post. You claim that I am a bigot because I am republican. I fail to see how this is any different than what you claim the republicans are doing to you. Firstly, gay marriage is not on the republican agenda, for or against. Romney cares about you being able to get a job to pay off your debt when you finish school. Since this is more pressing matter for the majority of the population you can’t ignore it. Considering I am currently unemployed and have been three times now since Obama has been elected despite my degree in engineering and looking at the bills and mortgage I have to pay, I’d argue that a vote against a booming economy and more jobs is a vote against me and the 7.9% of people who are unemployed.

    • First of all, I didn’t say you were a bigot, necessarily. I said you were voting for bigoted social policy, and therefore supporting bigotry. If you honestly think gay rights are not part of the Republican platform and agenda, you should really get to know your own party. From the Romney website:

      “As president, Mitt will not only appoint an Attorney General who will defend the Defense of Marriage Act – a bipartisan law passed by Congress and signed by President Clinton – but he will also champion a Federal Marriage Amendment to the Constitution defining marriage as between one man and one woman.”

      Second of all, I think you should reinspect the facts about this election and the economy. Obama inherited the worst economic crisis in 80 years from the Bush administration, and it’s unreasonable to expect that to be fixed in four years. I’m very sorry about your personal employment status but the economy is getting better, jobs are being created, and unemployment has fallen. The country has experienced a net gain in private sector jobs every month since March 2010. Obama supports a plan to allow students to pay off loans as a reasonable percentage of their paychecks, whereas Romney’s party played politics when Congress could have blocked student loan interest rates from doubling. Romney’s promise of a “booming economy and more jobs” is just that—an empty promise, not supported by reason, facts, or any relevant evidence. Any reputable economist who has looked as his budget plan agrees that it does not add up, and the only way he can actually cover his expenditures in a balanced way is by INCREASING the taxes on middle income Americans or by exploding the deficit. I’d like to avoid either one of those situations. A vote for Romney is a vote against you, 7.9% of people who are unemployed, and 47% of Americans he holds in contempt.

      As I’ve stated before, the choice in this election is not between good economic policy and human rights. It’s whether you’re for either or against both.

    • Bob, If you think Mitt Romney cares about middle-market American jobs you should google “Sensata” and learn about what Bain Capital is doing to good American jobs RIGHT NOW. Sensata is a company in Freeport, IL that has always been profitable and always provided solid, middle class jobs. It was bought by Bain Capital (Romney’s equity investment company) and it is being moved to China. The employees in Illinois have been required to train the Chinese workers that are displacing them and then the American workers are being fired. This is not an example of a struggling US firm that is being reorganized in order to become solvent again. This is simply greed and Romney trying to maximize profits at the expense of American workers.

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dave-johnson/mitt-romney-sensata_b_2026662.html
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/elizabeth-parisian/sensata-video_b_2079016.html

      Before President Obama took office, the economy was losing 800,000 jobs a month.
      Under President Obama, we’ve seen 32 straight months of job growth, adding 5.4 million private sector jobs, including nearly 479,000 manufacturing jobs since 2010—the most growth in a decade.

      President Obama cut taxes by $3,600 for the typical middle class family making $50,000 a year over his first term.

      President Obama refused to let the American auto industry die. He took a chance on Americans, and it paid off. More than 1 million jobs were saved, the U.S. auto industry is roaring back and adding jobs and all government loans were paid back ahead of time. Mitt Romney said that we should have let Detroit “go bankrupt.”

      Mitt Romney mocked the President for encouraging young people to pursue careers in manufacturing, and while he was governor of Massachusetts the state lost manufacturing jobs at a rate twice the national average.

      President Obama has a plan to bring jobs back to the U.S. by eliminating tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas, and creating incentives for businesses to bring jobs back to America. Mitt Romney has no plan to get rid of tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas, and wants to eliminate taxes on American companies’ foreign profits, which would actually encourage more outsourcing.

      Bob, I urge you to read this article before you vote:

      Read more http://www.newyorker.com/talk/comment/2012/10/29/121029taco_talk_editors#ixzz2BOH8InRO

      Thanks and take care.

  71. Nicely put Daniel. On Tuesday I am voting for your right to get married.

  72. Loved reading your post and the video was great too. What makes me emotional is the fact that we’re getting really close to a time when there is true equality, but there’s still lots of work to be done. I live in Seattle with my husband and two small children. We’ve noticed that of the many churches in our neighborhood all but one supports Referendum 74. My husband has already voted, for marriage equality and Obama. Women are being attacked too. It’s an important election for the rights of so many people. I can’t vote because I’m Canadian, but I’m doing my best to make sure all my friends vote.

  73. I’ve read your blog for months, but this is the first time I’m leaving a comment. I’m not gay or American, but I agree 100% with this post. Bravo to you, and good luck!

  74. Thank you for this post, Daniel. It was just what I needed this Saturday morning as I prepare to spend the day with my ultra-conservative mother.

    I think full marriage equality will have to come from the federal level, but it will more likely by decided by the Supreme Court rather than the president. Which makes the election even more important since whoever wins will probably have the opportunity to appoint two or three justices, dictating the Court’s policy direction for potentially years to come.

    My biggest hope for the next term is that the Dems are able/willing to push through the employment nondiscrimination act, I am lucky enough to have a good job and afraid that if I come out at work I will be fired since management leans heavily towards the religious right.

    • I agree that marriage equality needs to be federal, and I really don’t know how that will happen. But yes, you’re absolutely right—we have to worry about the future of the court in this election just as much (if not more) than Congress and perhaps the presidency. I can’t even fathom where we’ll be in 4 or 8 years if Romney wins and has the opportunity to appoint two justices. Absolutely terrifying.

      And yes, we need to include sexual orientation and gender identity in any language about discrimination in the workplace and elsewhere. Thank you.

  75. Well said, Daniel. Well said. While I am Canadian, I am crossing my fingers for an Obama win this coming Tuesday. Equality is a necessity in any functioning democracy. Best of luck!

  76. beautifully said. it reminded me to “i have a dream”.

  77. Your eloquence and grasp of all the issues surrounding this election belie your years! So beautifully written and I’m sobbing like a fool while typing this :D
    If I could vote (not a citizen), I know without a doubt who I would vote for!
    Those who can vote, please do not take it for granted and exercise your right this Tuesday!

  78. I replied to something that Anna wrote on facebook about this piece but I feel compelled to write something here. As a parent it crushes my heart to think that if my children grew up and realized that they were gay and were not treated equally in this country. I have a son who loves wearing purple metallic leggings and pink nightdresses and we let him go with it because that is who he is. Some parents tell me that I am forcing him to be gay my letting him make these choices. I just give them a “whatever”.

    Alternately when people get all up in arms about cutting social services, that they dont want to “give handouts” and also preach that they are pro-life and every life is sacred are beyond me. There is a huge huge difference between being pro-life and pro-birth. My daughter was adopted from the foster care system and when Romney and other right wing anti social service politicians holler about cutting services they are essentially saying to my daughter that she didnt deserve to be rescued from her situation, that she was garbage, that she deserved to be born to a teenage addict and should just deal with it. And if you are against letting gay people have equal lives…how is that pro-life?

    The few people that I know who are voting for Mitt literally REFUSE to explain why, they say that they dont want to be attacked. I think that the real issue is that they cant explain it, that something like being raised pro-life has been so totally forced into their system that they are blind to any other issue with someone like Mitt. If you are going to be pro-life you have to be willing to provide decent services to the women who are essentially being forced to give birth to children that they cant take care of.

    This entry was beautiful and amazing. Thank you so much for sharing it. And please know that my family is in full support of everyone being treated equally, everyone having access to their own choices and services should they need them. That is what makes me feel like a “good” American.

    • Thank you so much for your comment, Sara (here and on facebook!). Good on you for letting your son express himself and be who he is. Kids are kids and they play however they play for a variety of reasons, and he is so lucky to grow up with parents who don’t make him feel like he’s doing anything wrong for being a child. Whether he grows up to be gay, straight, or somewhere in between, I hope he never has to experience a world where he isn’t equal with everyone else.

      And YES, YES, YES, YES, YES re: social services and abortion. It’s absolutely insane to me that this party is basically saying to people “if you’re a 14 year old girl and you’re raped, you have to bear the child of your rapist and oh yeah, no social safety net to care for the child you never wanted in the first place! Good luck!” The demonization of social programs across the board is truly astounding, and really speaks to just how very, very clueless so many people in this country are.

      Thank you again.

      • Daniel, I’ve read this post five or six times over the last few days and pestered everyone I can to read it. This is such a powerful piece of writing and reading everyone’s comments has magnified the impact for me. It’s prompted so much that I’m tempted to leave the longest comment ever left on a blog but I have enough sense (just) to exercise restraint. I’ll limit it to saying thank you to you for writing this and please to all US voters… you know what you need to do.

        I also wanted to comment on Sara’s comment. I’ve been known to read Sara’s blog and she has made me cry with admiration on more than one occasion. Her comment here about raising her son did it to me again.

  79. Thanks for sharing that video, it made me weepy as well!

    We are going to see President Obama tonight in Virginia and casting our vote on Tuesday. As part of a mixed marriage, I understand that I am enjoying rights that others did not have a generation before me. It is my hope that very soon the issue of marriage equality for all will be something the next generation looks back and asks “What were they thinking back then?”

    Depeche Mode said it best – People are People.

  80. So well said, Daniel. Heartfelt and smart, just like always. Cheers.

  81. Daniel, thank you. This was beautifully written and so powerful. I’m still teary-eyed. Hugs from California.

  82. Thank you as usual for sharing your opinions- although following the US election from Europe constantly I learned a lot from your post and the comments. I sooo hope Obama will make it again.
    Besides that I appreciate the fact that you build a great community of bright emphatic readers in this corner of the internet around your blog.

  83. beautifully written post, thank you!

  84. like x1000, well said

  85. Thank you, Daniel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  86. If only everyone could read this. And I wish we could vote.

  87. This post brought a tear to my eye. Many posts like this do. I was born and raised in CA, but now live in Oklahoma. The politics here make me sad…and scared. This week we enacted an open carry law. I vote. I care. But I know that my state majority will never agree with me. but none the less, I try. Politics these days are so confusing. So many so called conservatives who preach small government and then legislate everything they don’t personally agree with. I hope that despite being raised in a red state, and in this current political state, I can teach him tolerance and understanding, and most of all equality for all. I’m a huge fan of your blog and am glad to have read this post. My dear friend Kathleen tells me you are pretty kick ass in person too.

    • Thank you for caring and seeing clearly in a state where the politics don’t match your own, Danielle! Kathleen and I have never actually met in person, but we talked over Skype once and I think she’s pretty kick-ass, too. :-)

  88. Yes. Exactly.

    What I find most exasperating is that the Republicans never seem to take ownership for their own bad positions in the past. Civil rights, climate change, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan (not to mention Viet Nam). Conservatives have consistently been on the wrong side of these issues, but they never admit it, and they certainly never take a look at the arguments they are making today and compare them to the nearly identical arguments they made in the past. Then they just sort of drop it, like it was just a bad haircut that they outgrew.

    And they have the nerve to act like all our tax dollars are getting spent on things that offend them, like food stamps and planned parenthood. I mean, if they don’t think they should have to pay for my birth control, imagine how I feel having to pay for their wars?

  89. I just want to say “f*ck yeah!” to everything you wrote! (sidenote: a giant eyeroll to anyone “offended”) Oh your feelings are hurt? Who the f*ck cares?! A whole class of citizens are being denied rights so let me break out my tiny violin. If it’s NOT an issue of why you are voting it truly says a lot about you, and what it says isn’t good.

    This election is really about the have and the have nots. Those who have and those who have to worry where there next meal is coming from, how they can get medical treatment, if they’ll ever have the right to marry, if they’ll still have a choice over their own bodies. Having been a have not once and knowing what it’s like I know what side I am firmly standing on.

    PS. sorry for the language but the BS surrounded by this issue is infuriating to me.

    • Ha, Sherry, do I seem like somebody who’s offended by foul language? I am the most foul.
      (a-to-the-fucking-men, btw.)

  90. Daniel,

    I’ve been reading your blog for years and I always look forward to your posts. But this one touched me more than any others. I am a straight woman who was raised by lesbians and most of my friends are queer. I am voting for another 4 years of Obama b/c I am terrified of Romney and his personal opinions about the people I love the most and the restrictions he wants to place on the decisions I make about my body. Thank you for such a well-written piece, it brought tears to my eyes and gave me just another reason to admire and respect you.

  91. Thank you. This is exactly what I try to tell the Republicans around me- I live in Florida, supposedly a swing state, but here in Orlando it feels pretty damn conservative. I really hope that this brand of reasoned, compassionate thinking will carry the day!

  92. Thank you for making (another) little queerling cry. We were allowed to marry in CA for a minute, and I hope that one day my girlfriend and I will be able to once again. Here’s to hoping and voting!

  93. Thanks for this post! I voted for marriage equality here in Washington state, and I have a good feeling it will pass. I voted for Obama, too. While I agree with you about his economic track record and policy, for me civil rights trump the economy every time. When my right to my body and equal pay and your right to equality as a citizen are on the line, why the hell are we talking about the economy? It makes me really angry. Plus, I’m absolutely certain that if Jesus were alive today, he would vote for marriage equality.

  94. A beautiful post. One of my dearest friends is a poster boy (literally) for Ref 74 in Washington (along with his partner and their chickens!) and I hold high hopes that one day I’ll be able to attend his wedding. Legalizing gay marriage is a no brainer in my book.

    (Also, MACKLEMORE. Love!)

    The best to you and Max.

  95. Long time reader, but this is my first comment.

    I live in Minnesota and on Tuesday I will be voting against the ballot measure that would limit the definition of marriage to one man and one woman. It disgusts me, quite honestly, and I’m saddened that it’s gotten this far in my state.

    I also want to thank you for making a post like this. Where I live, there’s a Vote No sign on every other lawn, but my understanding that this amendment has a strong has a strong chance of passing. Anything that can add names and faces to the fight is important.

    The people who are arguing so hard against same sex marriage are just on the wrong side of history.

  96. Romney cares about Romney and probably doesn’t actively care about anyone else in the world. He will say or do whatever he thinks will get the person or group to whom he is speaking at the moment to vote for him. He was the governor here in MA when the Supreme Judicial Court made gay marriage legal. Here are links to a couple of articles that detail how inconsistent his ideas/talk/actions were re: marriage equality and gay rights in the state:

    http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2012/04/30/473352/romney-marriage/?mobile=nc
    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-romney-gay-marriage-20120430,0,4165605,full.story

  97. so incredibly well said.

  98. Love this! So happy to read the comments as well.
    My friend shared this Huff Post article on Facebook today. It was a really good read.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mobileweb/christopher-hennessy/the-big-lie-i-love-my-gay-friends-but-im-voting-for-romney-anyway_b_2030629.html

  99. I have to admit, I’m a republican through and through. But until the republicans get their shit together (i.e. realize it isn’t their business who’s marrying whom or whether someone decides having a baby isn’t the right choice) I can’t get myself to the polls. While i can’t convince myself to vote for Obama, I won’t be voting against him on Tuesday either. Our hope is someday, we’ll get a republican candidate who is as well-versed in basic human rights as he/she is in fiscal policy…

  100. Daniel this is such an eloquent and beautiful post. Seriously, I can’t see how this isn’t a no brainer for voters – I can’t understand those who are voting Romney or even more, those who are undecided. Baffling. I’m Canadian and things like same-sex marriage, health care, a woman’s right to decide….those aren’t really issues here; and I’m so glad.I know that I, along with many many other non-Americans, will be watching the outcome of this election very closely on Monday evening.

    Thank you for posting this and sharing your thoughts and feelings in such a heartfelt way.

  101. 1st, so glad you, Max, Mekko & Linus are fine after the storm. 2nd, are those ads?! Congrats -that was QUICK! That video was really moving. While Obama may not (and will not, fingers crossed) be the president many of us hoped for (as a teacher, I don’t love his education policies), but I just know if your lifetime, we WILL see marriage equality for all. Never thought there’d be a black president in mine. Not too long ago in this country, interracial marriage was barred, which may and should seem ridiculous to many. I’m wondering why gay marriage doesn’t strike the same chord. It is my hope soon that we will all look back on this time with incredulity -GAY people couldn’t get MARRIED?!

  102. :) on your blog, you seem to be preaching to the converted.

    The US doesnt seem to have any alternatives at the moment, but after years of Obama, I am disappointed. Tho the list is long, what really tops it is how wistle blowers are prosecuted worse than killers, I am ofcourse talking about another gay guy, Bradley Manning. http://mashable.com/2012/09/27/assange-bradley-manning/

    This (http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/03/30/090330fa_fact_gawande) is a long read, but I believe well worth your time. It seems a bit amazing what a culture of punishment at least certain parts of the US has – http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/atlarge/2012/01/30/120130crat_atlarge_gopnik

  103. way to make a grown woman cry!

    beautifully written, as always. i’m not gay or American, but if i could, i’d vote for Obama. EVERYONE should have the right to marry who they want. love is universal and has no limits. where i’m from, we face a lot of resrictions on marriage, not by law, but by social “restrictions” that people put up for themselves (i.e. if you’re high on the social ladder, don’t even think about marrying someone “beneath” you). it really hurts and though i can’t imagine the magnitude of having my rights legally taken away from me, the social barriers on marriage here really REALLY suck.

    i’m praying my heart out for you and Max. everyone is equal in my book. here’s to Obama for another 4 years.

  104. We are trying to follow the election campaign here in Switzerland, and I must say that your post has been the best, clear summerisation I have read so far. I wish reporters/ commentators came by and made it front page coverage. We wish America the best this week as it has substantial effect and meaning on all of us around the globe. America needs to wake up from the spell it is under since the Bush(s) administration, get back to being a nation of not only “we can”, but “we do” – a leading star of progress, courage and fierce advocate of human beings and their rights and not a shadow of itself haunted by some ghost that doesn’t exist (no longer). Our fingers are crossed – good luck.

  105. I couldn’t agree or support your post more as I’m truly appalled by the fact that in this day and age, most people don’t realize this is a deeper issue than just sexual preference. The simple truth is, this is a HUMAN RIGHTS issue. You can not deny one group of people the same rights and benefits that are freely offered to another group.

  106. Hello Daniel, this is a great message and the Same Love video is beautiful and it’s great to be sharing it with people around the world, and I just wanted to say hi and thanks. It was a fantastic and memorable day when the world woke up to see that Americans had voted in it’s first black American President, but Obama is respected and indeed loved across the world for the person he is and what he believes in, not just because he is President of the USA. I truly don’t want to wake up into a world where Mitt Romney is elected President after the insane ignorance and bigotry he and some Republicans in office have displayed.

  107. Just wanted to say HEAR HEAR! If I were American, I would vote for Obama.

  108. Nice. I already voted as a blue dot in a red state. I’m afraid Tennessee will be one of the last states to ever acknowledge these basic civil rights, and it’s infuriating. Maybe one day, but it makes me sad for my children growing up in a society that still discriminates. They can’t wait to be old enough to vote, and I can’t wait either.

  109. I am not American and I am pro life but if I were voting I would never ever vote for this incarnation of the Republican party, the bigotry and plain ignorance I have read beggars belief, my jaw has literally dropped reading some of the commentary. Obama is the only man for the job. Good luck America, the world is watching! P.s I think it is so great you have done a post like this on your blog. P.p.s I hope you will all have equal marriage rights too some day.

  110. Hi Daniel,
    My name is Madelynn, I dont typically write comments, but felt it was appropriate after reading your post. I currently reside in Minneasota and feel the weight of this years vote. I just moved to MN only this last August, from Manhattan, and although I miss NYC like crazy I am excited to call Minneapolis home for some time. Anyways, thank you for writing this post- it was so helpful and incredibly affective to read. I am a straight young woman, married, and would never deny this right to anyone, but I loved reading your experience and having something more tangible to relate to. So thank you for sharing! 50 years ago cross racial marriages were illegal, and as another human being who am I to deny that basic and wonderful right to anyone? You are right, you are lucky to live in New York, and hopefully after tuesday, Minnesota will be one step closer! Cheers!

    Madelynn Hackwith Furlong

  111. I am so happy to see SO many positive comments about this fantastic post! (with the exception of one or two).I feel like anytime I’ve seen anyone make such a bold statement there a ton of ridiculous comments from republicans. It’s so good to see there are good people in this country supporting what is true and right.

  112. Hi Daniel;
    I can’t vote in your part of the world. But I do pray that Obama will win.
    I can imagine what you say about the sadness you feel when your love and commitment and connection towards someone is judged by society as not worthy of recognition or respect. I think commitment and love always deserves respect, and you have to live within that awareness and turn inward with that in a way. One day that inner awareness will be expressed on the outside in society as a whole as well. Keep your heart safe and kind in that proces and cherish what you have and know to be true. I was moved this morning by the story in our paper of Louis Halsey and John Spofford who got married in NYC last year after being together for 64 years.

    The strange thing in the US is that your society is so free in an economical way that people can be rich one day and poor another day. That can be exciting but I notice that when I think about that it could also make me feel as if I would need more, and more just to be safe and jet I would not really feel safe. Lately I strongly wonder what value money has if you cannot bring yourself to share it or use it to improve society. To share what it can bring to people in development, in a sense of safety, in knowledge (applause for George Lucas here, and Bill Gates as well please) in health and happiness and beauty. How much people would be better parents, leading to a better society and better people if they could afford the time needed to be truly involved and connected with their family and feel secure in that?

    Well, just my two cents on a wonderful post. Well written and heartfelt.
    Have a wonderful day, things will be fine.

  113. As a straight Californian (San Franciscan to be exact! Holla!) We are anxiously awaiting the outcome of Perry vs. Brown to get back the rights as they were 4 years ago. Equal rights baby!

  114. Daniel, great post and it’s also wonderful to see that it’s reached so many people.
    I don’t think I’ve ever been simultaneously angrier/sadder than I was once when the local paper (in Richmond, VA) trumpeted that 79% of Virginians opposed same-sex marriage. The marriage-between-man-and-woman-only measure passed with a less lopsided vote, but was/is still an abomination. Talented people are leaving our state because of its hostility to marriage equality.
    My husband and I married, over 26 years ago, after living together for several years — not because we felt that marriage personally strengthened our bond but because, in the eyes of many others, we weren’t a true “couple” in the same way that marrieds are. Then I learned several years ago that some of the religious “rationale” for denying same-sex marriage apply to mine as well — i.e. that a true marriage can only be one that is conducted by clergy (we were married by a magistrate). There is just so much BS around the whole thing but the fact remains that official marriage imparts a number of legal benefits that my husband and I wouldn’t otherwise enjoy.
    What it boils down to is that despite being old and straight and legally married, I CANNOT vote for a candidate who is in the Defense of Marriage camp — no matter how much I may support other views that candidate may hold. Believe it or not, there are some of us who aren’t gay but feel so strongly about the importance of marriage equality that we are single-issue voters.
    I will be proudly voting again for President Obama come Tuesday. Thanks again for providing this forum.

    • Also hailing from Richmond, VA! Daniel, not sure how much you pay attention to VA’s politics now, but, even scarier than this election is our governor’s race next year. Read up on Cuccinelli for a real scare (and icky, creepy feeling).

      Bfish – pretty sure the Times Disgrace has published new stats, showing that VA now is split. You know what I find to be the biggest catalyst for change with people who support “traditional” marriage? Introducing them to gay people. I haven’t asked my parents what their views are recently, but their rhetoric stopped after they got to know our gay friends (a few house parties). Once they had a couple drinks together, my mom realized she really enjoyed their company. And, my dad’s commentary (e.g. “don’t drink after them”… oh, yes, I’m not joking) ceased.

      • Oh, I’m still registered to vote in Virginia, and Cuchinelli and McDonnell are so very, very scary. Here’s hoping Virginia comes to its senses in upcoming elections, and stays blue in this one.

        It’s absolutely true that when people actually know gay people, their views tend to shift and change—that isn’t just your experience (though I’m very glad it is!), it’s backed up by heaps of polling data over the last decade or so, in which the country has undergone and enormous and rapid shift on this issue. As gay people are becoming more comfortable coming out to friends and family, LGBT characters become more commonplace in the media, and more people in general can no longer view homosexuality as something abstract and distant, we become more in favor of equal rights as a country. That’s part of why having somebody in the White House who doesn’t preach shame and hate is so important.

  115. Hear! Hear!

  116. thank you for this post, which so succinctly sums a vast majority of the issues that are most important to me as well.

  117. PS — does this mean that you and Max are thinking of getting married….? :)

  118. Thank you for this post. I think all of this needs to be discussed more in an open forum, with particular points of view like yours, not just rhetoric. I live in Maine you bet I’ll be voting for marriage equality on Tuesday. The sad part about our referendum is that there are so many right-wing religious groups from out of state that have donated lots of money to stop this from passing. Here’s hoping that this year we will inch closer to equal rights for all!

  119. Daniel. I have been reading your blog since the beginning, when you and your college roommate were starting your adventure in NYC. I have loved watching you evolve to where you are today, and taking us along with you.

    I am going to admit that I am a registered Republican in a Republican dominant city, but with one post you have swayed me to rethink my vote for who I want running our country.

    Four years ago I voted for Barack Obama hoping for a change in the way this country was going. Although we have been one of those families who have suffered from unemployment, the real estate fall out and a tough economy I have just been reminded what the Republican party could do destroy all that has been done to provide equal rights. I was so conflicted due to what we have gone through financially I began to think that maybe a change would be good. But as the sister of a gay man, who died from AIDS in 1994, I now realize, because of your post, what is really important to the future of this country and my children.

    I am tearing up my mail in ballot as I speak and going to the polls to vote for Obama so that my children, your children, and all the children of the future will have a chance to be happy in whatever relationship they choose.

    Thank you for reminding me how important love and equality is in a world so full of ambivalence.

    • Your comment means more to me than you can know, Pamela. Thank you. xoxo from all of us.

    • I don’t even know you, Pamela, but I want to give you a big hug.

    • This comment made me cry, Pamela. Your words give me hope. Thank you.

    • wow. bravo Pamela. i’m truly speechless. i’m a firm believer that words have power and this post and your resulting actions just go to prove that. bravo to you.

    • This is the most beautifully and eloquently written political piece I have ever read.

      I’m in Pamela’s boat this election season. As a happily married, quasi-republican (definitely not the tea-partier kind), twenty-something, it breaks my heart that not all couples can enjoy the same legal status. I am still a “fiscal conservative,” but when it comes to basic human dignity, I cannot support someone who will fight against marriage equality. Love is love, and that trumps politics any day.

    • That is so moving, I’m so glad you wrote this post Daniel!

  120. Beautifully done Daniel – though I’d expect nothing less from my beautiful nephew! We love you and I couldn’t be more proud of you for taking up the fight, even if you stood me up for dinner last week. As I heard Gavin Newsom say last year, the arc of history is on our side – even here in bat-shit crazy Utah. Love you, Josh.

    • Thanks, Joshy! Although I still feel absolutely terrible about spacing our plan (you got my email, right?). NEVER AGAIN, I swear!

  121. Amen. Amen. Too many tears to write more.
    but amen

  122. daniel — we met last night. i ate an omelette to your left, max to your right with a behemoth stack of pancakes, whilst you chowed down on the most epic fucking bagel sandwich any of us had ever seen.

    anyhow: been looking through your nest all day like a supercreep. alligottasayis, damn boy, you know how to handle a circular saw!

    also: amazing. had me drooling and lol’ing for hours. keep on keepin’ on!

    ps: i hope your mekko is on the up & up!

  123. me again — also: my bedroom is painted benjamin moore’s paper white. in matte. (a shade i pored over for a good hour at the hardware store.)

    it was definitely fate that we stuffed our faces together last night!

  124. As and American citizen and Washington resident living abroad I had to go to extra lengths to make sure that I could vote YES on R74, but you better believe I did it and felt oh so amazing! I took Wednesday off work (that will be Tuesday night US time) so that I can watch the election events unfold. Fingers are crossed for happy results!

  125. Hi Daniel,
    I’m very lucky to be a EU citizen living in the UK, a country that allowed me to marry my amazing wife, and very proud that she is from the Netherlands, the first country to give us truly equal rights, over 10 years ago (and as far as I know, the country hasn’t gone to ruins, the gays haven’t taken over and the institution of marriage isn’t more in shambles than it is anywhere else). I do not take this right lightly, and I am aware of how lucky we are and how much work there still is to be done in so many countries.
    That being said, I am originally from France, where the debate is currently raging regarding the proposed “marriage for everyone” law our socialist government is planning to put through Parliament, and the arguments put forward by opponents of the proposal, even in a country where government and religion are separate and secularism is fiercely enforced, surprise me (I must have been naive) and really hurt my feelings.
    But what strikes me the most, is the fact that contrary to other policies that depend on the economy, the amount of money available to the government, and other things that could be said to be out the control of policy makers, gay marriage is a right that is denied to us simply because people have decided they don’t want to give it to us. It doesn’t depend on the state of the economy, it doesn’t depend on money needed to continue a war that was started many years ago, it doesn’t depend on anything other than people having decided that no, they will not give us equal rights. This makes me feel like a second class citizen in my own country and many others, and I can only imagine how it makes you feel with the strong words used by Republicans on this issue. My Dutch wife cannot even comprehend how religious groups in France can have “anti equality” demonstrations (their name, not mine) or how a candidate to the White House can swear to protect the sanctity of marriage and amend the constitution specifically to deny people rights simply because he and other people have decided they don’t want us to have that right. I’m sorry to make the comparison, but can you imagine anyone in Europe, the US or elsewhere saying they want to change the constitution to forbid black people to marry white people because it is not natural in their eyes and they don’t want to give people that right?
    I seriously hope that tomorrow’s results will be the one we hope for and that hate won’t win. Because this is what it is, a choice between hate and a step in the right direction.
    Thank you for reminding people of that!

  126. THANKS FOR THIS POST! My partner and I got married on July 24th, 2011 (the first day it was legal in NYC.) It’s so exciting to think we’re moving ever closer to be recognized on a national level as husbands.

  127. Fantastic Daniel. It’s crazy that this basic human right should still be up for debate. Hopefully won’t be an issue for too many more elections.

  128. I am immensly impressed by this post and by most of the thoughtful and kind comments that followed it. (Yes, there were tears involved.^_^°) At the moment, I can’t think of anything to add. You people said it all very well. Best wishes!

  129. Well said. Living in a very conservative area, I sometimes feel that my husband and I are all alone in a sea of open bigotry and hostility. Thank you for such an eloquent post.

  130. I’m a lurker here for over a year, following your blog through rss feed on my iphone. I love your writing and your wit! As a Canadian it pains me to see that most American do not have the same opportunities or rights that they would have if they lived in my country.

    My husband asked why I put a bumper sticker magnet on our car that reads “Obama 2012″ when we are Canadian (he’s not into politics like I am). I told him for the same reason that we chose a wedding officiant who happily performs same-sex marriages (and in Alberta officiants such as ours are rare, unfortunately) I also told my husband for the same reason, that even though we are a hetero couple, we had the following passage from the 2003 Massachusetts Supreme Court decision read at our wedding ceremony two months ago:

    “..civil marriage is at once a deeply personal commitment to another human being and a highly public celebration of the ideals of mutuality, companionship, intimacy, fidelity, and family…It is an association that promotes a way of life, not causes; a harmony in living, not political faiths; a bilateral loyalty, not commercial or social projects…Because it fulfills yearnings for security, safe haven, and connection that express our common humanity, civil marriage is an esteemed institution, and the decision whether and whom to marry is among life’s momentous acts of self-definition.”

    Thank you for sharing this post.

    • That’s really beautiful, Rebecca. Thank you for sharing.

      (I lived in Saskatchewan for a year, so I have some familiarity with the ongoing homophobia in western Canada. Canadians are lucky that they’ve had a government that stood up for equal rights, even in spite of ongoing bigotry among the populace. I wish the U.S. would cut the shit and do the same.)

  131. What a beautifully written plea for the (right) vote!

    It is simply preposterous that anno 2012 anyone can still be classed as second class or inferior, on whatever basis, and in whichever country. Sadly this still happens in many places on our beautiful globe. I hope your plea reaches many (I will post to my Facebook pages to spread the word in the hope to reach more people) and keep my fingers an toes crossed so that the right votes (for Obama in this case) are cast. For the results of the American election affect us all, both in the US and elsewhere…

    From Barcelona, with tears in my eyes and hope in my heart.

  132. This is everything I’ve been trying to say in this election only perfectly written and so, so bravely sent out into the world. Thank you for writing this.

  133. Just wanted to drop you a line and say in addition to loving watching your world through your blog…I voted a resounding yes on Ref 74 here in Washington. My whole family, and all of the friends I hold dear voted yes. Marriage should be there for anyone that wants it. I have also made my opinion well known in my workplace which is much more conservative than my lovely liberal family and friends. So I will be watching my local election this time around very closely.

    Crossing my fingers and hoping Washington State does me proud!

  134. Daniel, that’s totally and utterly brilliant. I’m so proud of you!!

    Flora
    (Sophie and Andrew mom from GDS)

  135. Thank you so much for this post. My sister in law and I had a discussion last night on the marriage amendment. She said she didn’t think it should that gay people should get married, I argued that they absolutely should. I told her much less eloquently than you did that any form of discrimination in this day and age is absolutely ridiculous. She cited religion, I told her that religion can’t come into play because not only is there supposed to be separation of church and state but there are different religions all over the world who believe very contrary things and who is to say hers is correct? In any case I passed your post along to her because I think it is so beautifully written and I just can’t wrap my head around anyone disagreeing with it.

  136. Great post (as always) Daniel, My overly simplified thoughts about this election follow:
    Republicans…. More interested in regulating your bedroom than the boardroom. Republicans…. More interested in short-term individual profits than long-term American prosperity. Republicans…. Only interested in THEIR own family values when ALL families have value. Republicans…. Only interested in freedom of religion when you subscribe to THEIR doctrine. Republicans…. More concerned that health insurance covers Viagra than contraceptions.

    Keep sharing your incredible talent.

  137. Thank you for such an eloquent post. I work with a woman who just last week told me she was undecided on who to vote for in this election. I seriously couldn’t fathom how that is even possible.
    I’ve already cast my vote for equality and have supported fundraising efforts in MN’s vote against discrimination. And now I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the Supreme Court will strike down DOMA in the coming year.

  138. I’ve cast my Yes in MD!

    Beautiful post.

  139. thank you! so well said. i live in minnesota and i have been working to defeat the marriage amendment along with SO MANY OTHERS and i think we will win this one. i am with you 110%. thank you.

  140. I had to read other’s comments that this made them cry to realize that I was crying too. I live in Santa Clarita, California. This town is loaded with conservatives. On the night before the 2008 election, I had to drive various places around town. Lining the streets were huge groups of Prop 8 supporters. With fucking yellow t-shirts and huge signs. They had their kids out there. Brain-washed teenagers, and innocent little toddlers. They were cheering and dancing and shit. It was so disheartening and disgusting. I grew up in Los Angeles, and had not before witnessed such a display of bigotry and hate right in front of me. It still makes me sick to remember it. So I can only imagine what it feels like for you, and what you face on a daily basis. I guess I just want to say that I think you’re super brave and a wonderful person. Thanks for sharing with us.

  141. i have voted “approve” to Ref 74 in washington. i am voting for myself, my partner, you, and all of the other gays and lesbians in this country without a voice this election season. thank you.

  142. Did you parents go to Tulane?

  143. Discrimination makes us less as human beings. How have we got to such an advanced technological state and still not evolved beyond it is baffling.

    I live in the UK, where this is not such a hot topic although it still gets our (otherwise hopeless) politicians into trouble with the church.

  144. Well said Daniel, well said. I am 100% agreement with you.

    I may not be gay, but I am a woman (who resides in a town just outside of Boston). There is no way in Hell I can vote for Scott Brown (for Senate) or Mitt Romney. Both claim to understand the needs of women because the former says, “I live in a house full of women” and the latter’s wife seems to think Dear Ole Mr. Sqare-Jaw-Mass-Health-Care-Reform is the best darn husband since sliced bread. IMHO, Scott Brown and Mitt Romney are about a sensitive to the needs of women as Jack the Ripper!

    Not to worry Daniel, I’m voting for Obama (and Elizabeth Warren).

  145. Wait.
    So….
    We’re not getting married?

    • I’ve just come back to re-read this and read all of the comments, some of which have mde me cry all over again, but your one made me laugh out loud Chandler! x

    • I had the same thought Chandler. Xoxox

  146. Daniel, you’ve taken the words right out of my mouth! Its been very hard not to take the election personally (in the Senate race here in Mass as well as the Presidential Election). It sucks. You are brave and I hope am I able to one day eloquently relay a simliar message to my independent/republican friends and family.

  147. Daniel, like others I am a first time commentor and long-time lurker. Like others I came for the diy and stayed for the love, humour and puppies. I’d read 500 words from you about paint drying (and actually, I probably have and howled throughout) but posts like today’s are exactly why your decision to expand the blog beyond home stuff was the right one. Thank you for the finely written words and the frankness of opinion.

    As a (lucky) Canadian I feel a bit powerless. However, while I can’t do much to get the vote out, I can keep a keen eye on your advertising and show support through dollar bills. If I can’t vote for your rights, at least I can support your life, right?

    Keep up the great work. You have such a powerful voice and I’m glad you’re using it!

  148. This is such a moving post, Daniel. Thank you for being so articulate about the significance of tomorrow’s vote and the injustice and you and other gay people face. There are so so many reasons to fear a Romney presidency and equal rights for gay people is at the top of the list. In addition to voting, there is still more that we can do right now and tomorrow to ensure that Romney doesn’t get the keys to the White House. Go to barackobama.com to get involved (make calls, post on FB, etc.) And read this:

    In a last-minute directive issued Friday night that could disenfranchise thousands of Ohioans and tip the outcome of the election, Republican Secretary of State Jon Husted changed requirements for submitting provisional ballots on Election Day.

    The directive requires voters, not election officials, to fill out a confusing form listing the type of ID they provided to vote. This new directive is a clear violation of Ohio law and puts even more votes at risk of not being counted.

    Secretary Husted has also instructed election officials to not count ballots where that part of the form has not been correctly filled out by the voter.

    That’s why I signed a petition to Jon Husted, Secretary of State and Governor John Kasich.

    Will you sign this petition? Click here:

    http://signon.org/sign/ohio-secretary-of-state?source=s.em.mt&r_by=4198893

  149. Absolutely. My home state of MN (we moved to WI in 1999) has a referendum for a constitutional amendment to define marriage as one man, one woman, yadda yadda, on the ballot. From what I can gather it is a dead heat. The VOTE NO tv ads have been awesome. If it is defeated MN will be the first state where the voters did the right thing (in states where gay marriage is legal it was the legislature that made it so). Makes me want to move back there (also so I could vote for Al Franken and Amy Klobochar).

  150. Hi Daniel, Thanks for this post – I so agree with you. Let us all hope Obama is re-elected…I cannot bring myself to think otherwise.

  151. As a resident of DC (and proud absentee voter for Maryland), where the majority fancy themselves as policy wonks and experts, it’s almost impossible to tune out the constant political prattle (swing states, I feel for ya). At the least, I can say that my vote for Obama is more than a personal choice, it’s a careful decision whose shared impact will hopefully benefit everyone. Equality is the bare minimum that every person deserves.

    On a lighter note, you must get this all the time, but you look just like your father!

  152. Thank you for so eloquently articulating exactly why I am voting for President Obama – and a straight Democratic ticket – tomorrow.

  153. Democrats are thin on the ground in Colorado Springs, CO, but it just makes us more determined! My brother and his partner have been together for 27 years. That beats a lot of marriages, by my reckoning.

  154. Smart words by a beautiful soul. I love your posts – doesn’t matter if its about paint, dogs or your boy. Your posts are filled with your personality, wit & real emotions.

    I am also voting for President Obama. Tomorrow, I hope we are one day closer to equality and peace.

    Wishing you all the best & the choice to have a big bad ass wedding!
    WI love to you!

  155. Bravo!!! Well said!!!

  156. As so many people have already said, this is very beautifully written.

    This is definitely a defining moment in our country’s history on so many levels, which is exciting, yet frightening at the same time. It’s sad to think that for a country that has come so far, one person could take us back so far. However, I have hope in Obama and in this country making the right decision tomorrow.

  157. + 1 vote for ref 74 in Seattle :)

  158. Wonderful. I’m with Chris at the top of the page. Proud to have the chance to vote on something so important here in WA. (That song makes me cry, too. That can get a little awkward when I’m listening in the car…)

  159. I live in the UK but wish I could vote for Obama.
    And you actually.
    Have you ever considered running for office? I think you would definitely be elected!!
    It’s hard to believe that we are still fighting for equality in all things.
    The freedom to be who you are is such a basic human right. And as many people have said here, marriage is about publicly expressing love and commitment – gender is immaterial.
    Without wishing to sound hippy, love is all that matters.
    Fingers crossed for tonight x

  160. WA REF 74 – yes! – signed, sealed, delivered.
    (Can I get a resounding: Duh!)

  161. I’m coming to your blog today from Anna’s at Door Sixteen. I just had to tell you that I think this post is so incredibly well-written and spot-on that I have been sharing it with my friends.

  162. I went out! I voted! And I voted for Obama. And then I came home. And read this post. And cried. Because it made me proud of my choice. It made me proud to choose the candidate that will help the greater good. Even when my taxes are higher, because they will help others who are not as fortunate. Even if I don’t know any gay people that well to be invited to their wedding, because I know we will keep moving forward until one day we are all equal, until we don’t act like pickpockets are stealing our cash when we are asked to make small sacrifices for the greater good, until we don’t use religion to mask fear and prejudice.

  163. I love that you wrote this. None of the other blogs I read that cover the same type of thing you do would have touched this election with a 10-foot pole for fear of losing a reader. We all deserve to have our commitments to our life partners recognized by the government and our peers no matter which gender we love.

  164. I guess a congratulations is in order, Mr. Kanter! :) HOORAY for getting one step closer to equality!

  165. 4 more years!!!
    congratulations all the way from australia.
    xoxoxo

  166. whoohoo, you (we) win!!
    have a nice day :)

  167. Yes! I’m a straight woman who is whooping it up today (11/7) to see that marriage equality was supported and an attempt to define marriage to one man/one woman was defeated. As a child of the ’60s, I celebrate because this is simply the right thing to do, and because, well, damn, it’s about time. Good for you for having the guts to express an opinion where others have feared to tread. Reproductive rights, LGBT rights, health care rights, Social Security for dignity in old age rights, voting rights, safe food rights, living wage rights, collective bargaining rights. A just society promotes a slew of rights–for all, not the few. As a nation, we made a little progress yesterday. A few battles won, many more to go.

  168. Hi Daniel
    I’ve read your blog for quite awhile and I think only posted once (I also made a headboard via your tutorial, it looks awesome!) but I really felt compelled to write. This is a beautifully written post. I live in Canada where we’ve had nationwide (including the territories) same-sex marriage legal since 2005 – we certainly have our share of problems in this country but this is something that I’m proud of as a Canadian. My sister is a lesbian and even though she legally has the right to lawfully wed, I still see the effects of discrimination, bigotry and hate impact her life on a daily basis all the time. It’s sad and I hate seeing her suffer – she’s still pretty much in the closet as a result. I wish the US would legislate same-sex marriage nationwide – I find it really strange that it’s based on state voting, but hurray for NY! Thanks, as always, for your general awesomeness.

  169. Although I have been reading (ok,’stalking’ is more accurate. But, I have hoarded it selfishly because it is Mine and I don’t always share well–and I wanted it just for my own. BUT, I broke that rule with this post–I shared (ok, ‘stole’ is more accurate) and shared with many friends because it, well, it just said it all so very, very well. I am a liberal involved in politics who is currently live in the cradle-of-conservative- Everything in Indiana. But, your words not only spoke to me, they spoke to everyone I shared them with. Everyone. So, I’ll go back to loving you and Max and Meko and the furryone from afar…but, now I will also be eternally grateful.

  170. Just heard Carl Rove say (about future campaign strategies): “We have to make the case to young people that party they are associating with (democrats) is the party of choice, markets and liberty.” As if these are bad things LOL.
    Have a wonderful day!!!

  171. Daniel – you write beautifully.

  172. I’ve been reading your blog for a bit and never left a comment but I just can’t not leave a comment. I mean. You’re the SHIT! I love your writing. But this post was more than a blog post…and then the comments from all those people…even that asshat Bob. I have no words. You’ve said them all much better than I could ever.

    I would read ANYTHING you wrote. I mean it. ANything.

    Keep writing. Keep sharing it with us.

  173. Naturally I have to say I love your blog – so, I love your blog! I also believe that writers like you have such a wonderful gift, you have the power to truly change minds in a way no politician can. Keep up the good work! Please know that even in Florida, there are many who believe fervently in equality for everyone, and my vote reflected that notion. I am a small town Florida divorce lawyer, legally married with a ten year old girl. There is absolutely no rational argument against you having the same opportunities as I have to marry, and I feel in my heart the Supreme Court will ultimately agree! Election Day 2012 gave me hope for our future, and I hope it gave you hope for yours!

  174. Daniel, your writing just brought me to tears, while usually I am laughing out loud. I am a 54 y.o. white, divorced, heterosexual female and live in Ohio in a hugely Republican county and I am so happy and proud that my state went blue. Anyone who can align themselves with a group that includes Donald Trump, Ann Coulter, Glenn, Beck, Rush Limbaugh and Ted Nugent; well what can I say? We won!!!!

    (love your blog)

  175. Love this post! From a proud Obama-supporter and Nutmegger

  176. As usual your posts make me sick. Sick to my stomach! Sick because I will never be as good a writer as you!

    Awesome post, I am an Australian woman watching the Republican war on women with horror.

  177. Well said. This is the rant that I have each election cycle with my family. My husband and I were married in Connecticut several years ago because our home state (NY — the most “liberal” state in the country) did not have same sex marriage. Our honeymoon cruise was the ferry ride! :) In January, we will celebrate 25 years together — and as someone who is older than you, I must say that I never thought I would ever see the day when marriage would even be an option. I am so proud of the progress — and there is still so much more to do. Be well!

  178. I am so proud of this post…I want to thank you for everything you mentioned above ;you were to the point…no one can tell us, we are not equal, no one can dictate our future …posts and fights like this give us a little more , add a small piece to this hard earned freedom …equality, truthfullness and human rights have spoken…people like you make a difference everyday …thank you

  179. everyone has already said it all – so i will just say bravo. well said. and i know you were as relieved as i was a week ago. well done.

  180. I once read your blog from start to finish then fell off track. Now that you have a new home to work on , I’m back to reading….I’m one who likes to know the whole story… So I’ve had to go back and do some catching up. (So, this is why I’m commenting so late)…

    What an awesome, honest, touching post….

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