Interesting Atlantic article, although my own twist is different.  How America Got Past the Antigay Politics of the 90s.

The article is worth reading in its entirety.  The gist of the article is that the hypocritical dinosaurs who used antigay animus to garner votes in the 90s, are now irrelevant, dead, or have "evolved".  This includes some Republicans, but also former President Clinton.

I think the word, "evolved" allows politicians an out.  I imagine some really did evolve.  Some learned which side their bread is buttered on.  Some are just accepting a new reality and have to backtrack.

Before jumping too fast into a "postgay" era, we need to remember that, at least for now, more states than not forbid marriage equality, and employers in many states are free to fire LGBT people without reason.  Families and communities continue to stigmatize and reject, and there are plenty of religious leaders and politicians who scapegoat and vilify LGBT people.

But what about those who have "evolved"?  What do we think about them?  

I remember in President Obama's 08 election, he clearly stated the marriage = one man+one woman canard.  At the time, I remember feeling that he threw us under the bus to win the election, and prop 8 passed at least a little bit due to Obama's negative leadership at the time.  It was a bitter pill to swallow.   Since then, Obama has become our greatest champion. I admire him greatly for that, and am very thankful.   Reading the article, LGBT people, with $$$ and votes, played a meaningful role in the 2012 election, and the Vice President stuck his toes in the  marriage equality waters to test the temperature, before the President took a swim.

One reason I can't return to the town where I grew up is the history of stigmatization and harassment.  I don't even remember the names or faces of the people involved, just what I experienced.  They too, may have evolved.  No way to know.

When it comes to racial civil rights, I remember the change of heart of George Wallace. He said, "Much has transpired since those days. A great deal has been lost and a great deal gained, and here we are. My message to you today is, welcome to Montgomery. May your message be heard. May your lessons never be forgotten."  In addition, " I think I can understand something of the pain black people have come to endure. I know I contributed to that pain, and I can only ask your forgiveness."

In an era of spin, non-apology apologies, political opportunism, I doubt that we'll ever hear from any politician, a moving , heart felt "I am sorry.  I ask for your forgiveness".  The best we can ask for is "I've evolved", and work with that.

Which to be practical, and move on, and live, is necessary.

And a last word,  in a world of reversals and re-reversals, we might also want to (paraphrase Ronald Reagan) "forgive but verify".  As Woody Allen once said:  "And the lion will lie down with the lamb, but the lamb won't get much sleep."

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Good article



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