Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Change What?

Obama's appointments are nothing short of unimpressive. I never had high hopes for the man, but still! Couldn't you at least PRETEND like you might change SOMETHING? Maybe I'm still pissed about that Rick Warren douchebag and the "very much the same" bullshit discrimination against gays Obama is endorsing. But as he scoops up the flotsam and jetsam from the past two administrations to fill his cabinet and makes uninspired nominations for the rest, I think he's made it pretty clear that he is never going to change anything.
It probably doesn't help that I'm living in Spain where things HAVE changed. Gay people can marry and adopt kids. And no, the universe as we know it did not implode as a result. And yes, it is called 'marriage' here. Not some stupid 'civil union' bullshit. And the health care, vacation, living wage, blah, blah, blah, it's been said a million times before. Socialism! Oooooohhhh scary!! People off all incomes get to see a doctor here. Yikes!! And a woman runs the department of defense! Ghasp!! In fact, Zapatero made it a priority to appoint an equal number of women as men to his cabinet.
When I tell Spanish people about they way things are run in the US they can't understand it.
"Why don't the Americans vote for people who will give them universal health care?"
"How can you not have paid vacations? You need to be able to have time to relax!"
"Why are the universities so expensive? Don't they want their children educated?"
"Why do they care if gay people get married? Why not let people make their own decisions?"
"Why don't the Americans do something?? Why don't they have a revolution?"
I don't know. Why don't we do something?? Why do we continue to put up with this crap?? It obviously doesn't matter who you vote for, they really are all the same and they certainly aren't working for us anymore.
It is despicable and wrong that gay people are denied their right to the pursuit of happiness (what could make you happier than marrying the person you love?). What is so scary and wrong about our own citizens having the same right to marry as everyone else? It is a travesty that a few bigoted, small minded people are perpetrating this discriminatory and shameful oppression.
Here is what Zapatero had to say before the law allowing gays to marry was voted on in Spainish parliment back in 2005:

"We are not legislating, honorable members, for people far away and not known by us. We are enlarging the opportunity for happiness to our neighbors, our co-workers, our friends and, our families: at the same time we are making a more decent society, because a decent society is one that does not humiliate its members.



"In the poem 'The Family,' our [gay] poet Luis Cernuda was sorry because, 'How does man live in denial in vain/by giving rules that prohibit and condemn?' Today, the Spanish society answers to a group of people who, during many years have, been humiliated, whose rights have been ignored, whose dignity has been offended, their identity denied, and their liberty oppressed. Today the Spanish society grants them the respect they deserve, recognizes their rights, restores their dignity, affirms their identity, and restores their liberty.



"It is true that they are only a minority, but their triumph is everyone's triumph. It is also the triumph of those who oppose this law, even though they do not know this yet: because it is the triumph of Liberty. Their victory makes all of us (even those who oppose the law) better people, it makes our society better. Honorable members, There is no damage to marriage or to the concept of family in allowing two people of the same sex to get married. To the contrary, what happens is this class of Spanish citizens get the potential to organize their lives with the rights and privileges of marriage and family. There is no danger to the institution of marriage, but precisely the opposite: this law enhances and respects marriage.



"Aware that some people and institutions profoundly disagree with this legal change, I wish to say that like other reforms to the marriage code that preceded this one, this law will not generate bad results, that its only consequence will be to avoid senseless suffering of human beings. A society that avoids senseless suffering of its citizens is a better society.

"In any case, I wish to express my deep respect to those people and institutions, and I also want to ask for the same respect for all of those who approve of this law. To the homosexuals that have personally tolerated the abuse and insults for many years, I ask that you add to the courage you have demonstrated in your struggle for civil rights, an example of generosity and joy with respect to all the beliefs.


"With the approval of this Bill, our country takes another step in the path of liberty and tolerance that was begun by the democratic change of government. Our children will look at us incredulously if we tell them that many years ago, our mothers had less rights than our fathers, or if we tell them that people had to stay married against their will even though they were unable to share their lives. Today we can offer them a beautiful lesson: every right gained, each access to liberty has been the result of the struggle and sacrifice of many people that deserve our recognition and praise.



"Today we demonstrate with this Bill that societies can better themselves and can cross barriers and create tolerance by putting a stop to the unhappiness and humiliation of some of our citizens. Today, for many of our countrymen, comes the day predicted by Kavafis [the great Greek gay poet] one century ago: 'Later 'twas said of the most perfect society/someone else, made like me/certainly will come out and act freely.'"


Why can't we have a president like that?? Why??

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