Ashamed, bitter, angry, and filled with a little bit of loathing toward my fellows

>> Tuesday, May 08, 2012

And so it goes. In the ignorant, cracker, retrograde counties of North Carolina, the bigots, jackasses and fools turned out to vote into effect a state constitutional amendment (PDF link) that effectively outlaws domestic partnerships unless they involve a guy and a gal getting married. Gay couples can't get married, straight couples can't share benefits without putting a ring on it, there's an argument to be made that it effectively invalidates North Carolina's statutes regarding domestic violence protections except as applicable to married couples (and I can think of one attorney who plans on making it just out of spite). And I am angry and bitter and slightly loathe the state I carry in my heart, my home, my irrational source of inordinate homeland pride.

Let me say this for the benefit of outsiders: if you went to that link for the Mecklenburg Board Of Elections in the previous paragraph and knew where people lived, you'd see that as of this writing (some precincts aren't quite in yet) Mecklenburg County (Charlotte), Wake County (Raleigh), Buncombe County (Asheville), Watauga County (Boone), New Hanover County (Wilmington), Orange County (Chapel Hill), and Durham County (Durham) all voted against this stupid amending of the state constitution (there may be some places I overlooked, sorry, no offense meant). I.e. the amendment lost in all the places in North Carolina someone with a brain might want to live, where someone with some education and sense of tolerance and common sense might find similar souls and not feel like he landed on a miserable pit of an alien planet. Here is North Carolina in a nutshell for the out-of-stater: North Carolina consists of islands of civilization besieged by vast swathes of fucking goddamn Mississippi.

A week ago a colleague and I were talking and I commented that with all this state's economic woes, it was pathetic that the legislature had felt it was incumbent to take up the subject of gay marriage, which was already illegal in North Carolina and is now, apparently, double extra-special super illegal (along with a bunch of stuff that used to be legal for unmarried straight couples, by the way). And this guy, a conservative Republican, said the Democrats had been in power so long in this state, the Republicans felt like it was their turn, their time, whatever. Which completely begs the question of why conservative Republicans even give a rat's ass about what gay people want to do with themselves in the first place. Why do they care? Aside from the fact no church in this country has to offer its facilities to anybody they don't want to for any reason, do they really think gay couples are going to crash their bigoted, cretinous, shitty little churches just so they can spend their one special day affirming their lifelong commitment to each other by punking a bunch of assholes instead? Yeah, I totally see that being a huge problem--in someone's deluded fantasies.

But I admit I didn't rise to the occasion. I didn't really want to be having the stupid conversation with the guy.

One of the things I find stupid and offensive about this amendment, you know, is how ephemeral it's really going to be. This is the shittiest and most pointless thing about it, in a lot of ways.

It's kind of like the Eighteenth Amendment, you know, which is kind of a joke in the United States Constitution because here we have this document we like to pretend is some kind of stone carving of a founding document, and right in the middle of the appendix to it we get this ill-conceived ban on a since-time-immemorial American national pastime that lasts just shy of fourteen years and then there's an "oops, takebacks". Because political policy is something you want in your defining, how-do-we-set-up-a-government paperwork, right?

Thirty years ago, when I was a kid, people still got really uptight about homosexuality and "gay" was a punchline all by itself. I don't mean the SouthParkian "that's so gay" or "you're gay" or "fag" or whatever, I mean you had a character on a TV show or a movie who was effeminate and had these stereotypically "queeny" signifiers and that in and of itself was supposed to be funny. A loose wrist and a lisp or a short-haired aggressive chick in a biker jacket was, for some reason I can't remember or understand anymore, comedy gold. Gods help us, American culture sucked even harder in so many ways then than it does now, it's kind of baffling to recall it. But compare that to the kids these days, I'm proud of them, they give even less of a damn about what kinds of love are permissible than my generation does, and my generation has slowly, mostly stopped caring all that much and the Boomers aren't nearly as hung up as their parents were. The demographics are that homophobes are dying (which maybe explains a lot of their passion, when you think about it, not that pitying them makes me hate them any less, to be completely honest with myself). I mean, I was reading a thing this evening that one of the amendment's big supporters was Billy Fucking Graham, and that dude is, like, probably older than some of the dead dinosaurs I put in my gas tank before driving up to Raleigh this evening. It's hard to believe that dude isn't dead already.

So this stupid thing is going to get repealed. I mean, people are already talking about how it might get reversed in the courts, though I'm not sure I see that happening. But to hell with that, I'm not sure it matters: in thirteen or twenty years all the young kids, whatever else is wrong with them and their pants and music or whatever, are going to be wondering why in the hell is this bullshit in the state constitution for fuck's sake? They're going to be scratching their heads and kind of surprised it's against the law. Maybe it'll be thirty years. Do you know it was only five years before I was born that the U.S. Supreme Court finally axed miscegenation laws; and I mention this because these days interracial couples are common enough as to hardly be noticeable anymore, not even in the damned old South so much, and definitely the kids these days aren't getting strung out about it. And this is already happening with gays and lesbians in America--not instantly, not without spasms of violence or hatred or cruelty, or shit like what my home state just pulled today; it isn't kittens and rainbows, don't get me wrong--but it's happening and as inevitably and relentlessly as a coming avalanche. So why did the assholes in this state even bother? They're going to be a minority and then they're going to be dead, and all they accomplished was they made a mess for the kids to clean up down the road and we all get to look stupid in the meanwhile. Thanks. Thanks, lots, really mean it.

Doesn't change that I'm mad now. Angry, bitter, could almost spit on somebody. But I'll try to remind myself, the kids are alright.


Jeri 2.0 Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 12:23:00 AM EDT  

This post just hit me like a big ole cow pie in the eye.

I've been sitting here smug in my absolute assuredness that the recent retarded, backwards, idiotic, regressive, misogy... oh fuck, you know the drill... anyway, smug just knowing in my heart of hearts that sane, decent, progressive (in the sense of forward-thinking) people outnumbered the teatards and fundies, and would be outraged enough at recent legislation to clean up in the next presidential election. The results of the NC vote just truly scare the bejesus out of me.

Hopey is going to have to give a lot of really rousing speeches (which does seem to be his strongest talent) if he hopes to get the kids out to vote for him again. This time around he has a record, and that isn't necessarily to his benefit.

I hate politics.

Rachael Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 1:27:00 AM EDT  

Double whammy. Thanks to a reprehensible coward named Rep. McNulty in Colorado, the Republicans killed our civil unions bill by running out the clock because they knew it had the votes to pass. (And they also killed over 30 more bills besides, stuff that needed to be passed.)

I am beyond disgusted tonight.

Pangolin Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 2:50:00 AM EDT  

Well, that's the election season for 2012. The Republicans....Don't. Have. Shit.

They know it too. Every day they lose a little ground on the culture wars, nobody but the most self-centered assholes believes their economic policy and Obama is kicking their ass on the military jingoism front also.

So they're pretty much left with pissing in the punch bowl. Like that stunt they organized in West Virginia. Push comes to shove and given the choice between voting for a Mormon or a Black guy many of them are going to stay home.

Since the real truth is they don't know squat about policy.

Robbin Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 9:34:00 AM EDT  

How come everyone is reporting that it won by a landslide but the election results on the link you have here says the majority voted against the amendment?

Robbin Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 9:35:00 AM EDT  

I just answered my question...wasn't looking at statewide results.

Eric Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 1:18:00 PM EDT  

Michelle, re: the Toles cartoon (which I hadn't seen), to paraphrase a famous gay pop singer, "that's me in the corner":

Hurry up!

Thanks for sharing it.

Random Michelle K Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 1:29:00 PM EDT  

He's gay? Really?

Huh. Once again showing that sexuality doesn't matter one whit.

Eric Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 10:28:00 PM EDT  

Yep... well, sort of.

And you're right, Michelle, it doesn't matter, except insofar as being outside the social norms of his native South may have informed his work as an artist who writes empathic lyrics about outsiders and misfits. There is that. But in the sense/context you mean: exactly.

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