An Exchange Upon The Importance Of Anderson Cooper Saying He’s Gay

HER:So we have the right to demand that people lay their personal lives bare for the good of the cause? I don’t know what it says about me but I’m not comfortable with that. I disagree that his not addressing the issue marred his credibility. Had he been pretending to be a straight man out on the town every night with a different woman then maybe. But as everyone keeps saying, we all knew. Why did we need it to be a headline?I don’t know. I have mixed feelings as I expressed in the original post. Above all, I just fervently wish I live long enough to see a time when things like this don’t happen anymore.

ME: A time when the choices people make don’t matter? I don’t see that coming. It will just be about different choices.

HER: Not the choices – people’s sexual preference.

ME: That’s the choice that is the current issue – it’s the community that is fighting for equal rights. It isn’t quite like the civil rights struggle in the mid-twentieth century since that was based on the color of someone’s skin – although I recall several well-known people who had passed as white “coming-out”, and what a huge milestone that was. They made a choice to pass, and then made a choice to toss that aside and make a stand.

There is Anderson Cooper the private individual, and there is Anderson Cooper adult gay man. Until the struggle bears fruit that dichotomy is imposed by society. And it obviously takes a long time for it to dissolve, as we still talk about “what do black Americans think?” and “what do Hispanic Americans think?” as if they are these monolithic societal blocks that don’t allow for individualism.The difference at this point in history is there is importance attached to the question “what do X People think?” Someday that may just melt into “what do people think?” – but I doubt it. The bizarre caste system we have in this country generally elevates the lower castes to “interest group” because we have a history of such groups looking-out for their own rights.Anderson Cooper the out gay man is more positive than Anderson Cooper the gay man who avoids identifying himself in a society that is currently charged with the issue of gay equality. Especially as he is in a role where he investigates the roles others play in society. As a journalist this was less important; as a CNN anchor it was somewhat more important; but now as a daily talk show host who grills people about the issues in their lives it has an impact on his credibility to not be open about who he is.

He’s obviously trying to play-down his avoidance of the “are you gay?” question that he has been asked point-blank in the past. But the letter he wrote said he avoided the issue in the past because it would make doing his job more difficult: more difficult for him. He can say that is because he wanted to do the best job he could – but that in itself is an indicator of just how important public self-identification is! To get to a place where being a gay man wouldn’t make his job more difficult requires going through the difficulty to get it out of the way.

Whew! I had no idea I had such a specific opinion about this. This implies that, at least subconsciously, I have considered this at some depth. Great – now I have to wonder about my own identity!

Thanks a lot, [Her Name]

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Ryan Says Rights Come From God

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) says American citizens’ rights come from “nature and God”. Speaking during an interview with George Stephanopoulos on ABC, Ryan argued that the Affordable Care Act of 2010, recently upheld by the Supreme Court, should be repealed because “We disagree with the notion that our rights come from government, that the government can now grant us and define our rights. Those are ours, they come from nature and God, according to the Declaration of Independence.”

There are a couple of things wrong here.

Our rights as citizens come from neither God, nature, the Declaration of Independence, or the government: they come from the citizens themselves. They are a contractual guarantee specified by the Constitution, and specifically that portion of it called the Bill of Rights. This civic contract was entered into by the original 13 states voting in representative conventions. These rights are interpreted for us by the Supreme Court, in a judicial role set forth in that same Constitution. Our rights can be altered or augmented through the amendment process as set forth in that same document, the Constitution. One would hope that anyone serving in our government would be cognizant of these fundamental facts about the basis of our government and society.

Paul Ryan is a fool who should not be entrusted with governing power.

Romney Out-Fundraises Obama For The First Time

After racking-up the largest fundraising totals for any campaign in history, largely on donations of $200 or less solicited via the Internet, President Barack Obama was out-fundraised by the Mitt Romney campaign last month. Obama has parlayed being number two into a new strategy in which he depicts himself as the “poor man” who is taking-on the wealthy, corporate-donation-rich juggernaut the Supreme Court unleashed when it ruled corporations have the same rights as people to make unlimited campaign contributions.

Which is pretty-much the case.