The Good, The Bad and The Thing That Really Hurts

It is not a good post-election day to be a progressive queer person.  A few bright spots, but being at my laptop at 4:15 in the AM is not a good sign for my overall state of mind. 

Tom Michalow was not successful in his bid for County Council.  He fought a good fight and mobilized the local LGBT base like never before, but it wasn't enough.  I think Tom is a smart, energetic and experienced candidate and I'm comforted that we haven't seen the last of him.  Still, we've returned a man who thinks LGBT civil rights will discourage business and drive the Scouts out of business, not to mention an ardent defender of cutting taxes with no fiscal plan.  Sigh.  Thankfully, the balance in Council has not changed (the composition did not change at all), but it is back to the trenches to push for improved delivery to the LGBT community from within the current party structure, like it or not.

We are sending Joan Orie Melvin to the State Supreme Court.

On the national front, marriage equality no longer exists in Maine as the voters affirmed a proposition to repeal marriage rights for LGBT couples.  When I checked updates on my Blackberry at 3:30 AM, I knew there would be no more sleep for me tonight. 

Anti-gay leadership surged ahead in New Jersey and Virginia (already a tough place). 

The outcome of Washington State remains up in the air.  This proposition would expand domestic partnership benefits across the state. 

There is good news.  Kalamazoo, Michigan residents affirmed civil protections for LGBT persons by more than 62%.  St. Petersburg, Florida elected its first openly gay councilperson.

Locally, Natalia Rudiak joins City Council bringing an infusion of pavement pounding, progressive values and sheer hard work.

Luke's number dipped. He won and I am resigned that the next four years will suck. For gay people who don't party with … well, I guess I better keep my mouth shut, eh? Ah well.

I am glad we had the opportunity to support three candidates who value and affirm the humanity of the LGBT community.  I am sad we lost the support of would be progressive folks who will be back when they launch their own campaigns. And I mourn for families in Maine whose loss demonstrates that we have not learned our lesson about civil rights. 

Just wow.

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