Wednesday, November 05, 2008

AMERICA 2.0

President fucking Obama. Holy Shit!

Black is the new white house. The aristocracy has been toppled. How awesome is that?!
I didn't hold out too much hope yesterday.... because I hoped in 2004 and felt some painful after-shocks in the realization that my countrymen could be so short-sighted. This election has such an enormous global impact. We have decided to shift the direction of the human race.

I am so excited to go overseas again. If you are an American who travels overseas, you know it's been a hard 8 years. Yet foreigners do understand that if you are traveling in their countries you are a different kind of American; one with perspective. It is very difficult to have a new, broad perspective if you never leave home. That's why I believe that most conservatives do not travel overseas much, if at all.

I also can't shake the feeling that travel would solve all of our problems. Put simply, you don't drop bombs on places you've been to. And when you see more of the world's diversity, you come to celebrate it...instead of fearing it. That's why all those Californians who passed prop 8 need to get a passport and get the hell out for a little look-see.

Proposition 8 has outlawed gay marriage in California. These bigots and religious zealots have nothing to celebrate in their "victory" except for smug sanctimony. It gives me some solace to know that they will not be rewarded for this in heaven because the only heaven is here and they've chosen to make it a hateful place. And what about people of color? Would there have been civil rights if it was put to popular vote? Sadly, blacks voted 69 to 31 in favor of this hateful measure and I don't see black leaders condemning prop 8 or defending our civil rights. Where is Rev Al Sharpton? Pitiful.

I would hope that I would stand up for any minority group, as many straight people have and continue to do for us, should they be denied civil rights.

On a positive note, four years ago the vote wouldn't even have been close.

Aaron Hicklin, editor of OUT, wrote an excellent article about it today. He advises to remember that we are equal, even though the law and some of our neighbors tell us we aren't. We must all decide to let this make us stronger, not more cynical. This loss cannot put a damper on the fact we won a bigger battle yesterday. As they sing in hairspray, You can't stop an avalanche as it races down the hill! Yesterday was bittersweet, but equality is coming. It's just going to take a little more time.

Yesterday, as the western polls closed and Washington, Oregon, and California went blue...the networks finally called the election for Obama. Immediately, there were screams and impromtu pots and pans clanging in the streets. We joined them for a night of rejoicing in regime change.

Bam Bam, me (as Obama, baby) and Cooldan on St. Marks
St. Marks is the epicenter of radical arts and activism. Even with recent gentrification, St. Marks remains the heart of American counter-culture. I live one block away. The people poured into the street rioting with excitement, songs and chants. The police ended up closing off the street.

St. Marks Place, for President Obama
Then we found Daniel Nardicio, out carousing in the Playgirl party van a.k.a the "Shaggin' Wagon". We went everywhere from the East Village to Hell's Kitchen and back. Driving around we hit Lucky Chengs, the Cock, Nowhere, Therapy, Eastern Bloc, and the Boiler Room!

Daniel, Ian, Adam, Myles, and Cooldan
Cooldan recently got his finger chopped off by a window that came crashing down when he was trying to ash his cigarette. They had to reattach it surgically. Eww. This setback naturally didn't stop him from climbing atop the Playgirl party van to celebrate with the locals.

We actually blocked traffic with this maneuver, and the taxi cabs on 1st avenue couldn't get around. They were honking madly...but, get this, they were honking FOR us.

That's my shoe on the right.
St. Marks and 1st Avenue. Site of spontaneous block party for Obama!

Ok, so now for the politically incorrect funnies: so last night Harlem was just bursting with excitement. At one of the bars, we see footage from Harlem and someone says, "I haven't seen the blacks this excited since the O.J. verdict!"

Then we stopped in at Nowhere bar, just when Obama's acceptance speech was about to begin. There were millions of people on that lawn in Chicago waiting for him, and I couldn't help but remark, "Wouldn't it be genius if Obama arrived at the stage with Ayers and Rev. Wright?" Someone next to me chimes in, "Yeah, and Putin!" Another guy says, "And special guest Osama Bin Laden...in a birka!" Imagine hundreds of thousands of collective mouths agape. Genius.

Obviously, that didn't happen. And his speech was history. We all watched, rapt, at the dingy bar, and at one point Obama said: "For all those watching overseas in parliaments and palaces, and listening in forgotten corners of the planet..." and some queen shouts out, "like gay bars!"

One final note, John McCain reclaimed his dignity last night with that gracious and honorable speech. If he had run his whole campaign that way, I wonder if things would've gone different.

8 comments:

rebekka said...

I love Barack Obama. What a dream come true - inspiring, smart, sensible. And finally a multicultural president for America. I do think he is as unique as it gets, he is a breakthrough in every way. He did say in his acceptance speech "whether you are gay or straight" - the fact that he right away so respectfully acknowledges the LGBT community is at least a partial victory for gay marriage, despite California. You are right, Jesse - it will take some more time, but equal rights will come. At least in America these issues are discussed. Here, there is a lot more totally accepted bigotry in everyday life, across party lines(in Switzerland). But back to the best news in a long time: Long live President Obama! I love you!

Edina Monsoon said...

For all its bigotry, Switzerland has gay civil unions. Anyhow Switzerland has a total of 18 black people so bigotry isn't really that much of an issue.

I saw Rev. Jesse Jackson on TV today. He was crying profusely, but in an utterly false way. Like he was sticking a pin in his hand to generate tears, and no attempt to wipe them away, as TV cameras absorbed his "emotion". I really hope we don't have 4 years of him and Sharpton and their shakedown antics.

Am so angry right now that it was African Americans who passed Prop 8.

K said...

Jesse, you are an inspiration to me and so many others! Your words MEAN something! Keep up the good work.

K

Anonymous said...

Jesse,

I love and respect you too much to lie to you, therefore, I can't say last night didn't hurt. Thank you for acknowledging John McCain's graceful speech - he really is a class act. I truly hope I'm wrong about Obama, I wish him well.

Your friend Jimmy

Jesse Archer said...

Thanks, K!

Edina, I'm also severely disappointed. I wonder what it is, and how we can bridge this divide between race and sexuality.

I'd also be remiss if I didn't point out that Samuel L. Jackson is one important black voice that did speak out against prop 8.

Jesse Archer said...

Thanks, Jimmy.

I'm hoping he will earn your trust, as he talked about in his speech last night.

The Blackout Blog said...

Switzerland has a total of 18 black people so bigotry isn't really that much of an issue.

Is there some kind of logical shortcut I didn't learn yet?

?!

Tony said...

Hey Jesse -

Ditto your comments on both Obama and McCain.
It was a great day.

As for Prop 8 in California and the similar votes in Arizona and Florida, looks like the forces of unreason and intolerance managed to eke out a what I hope is a last gasp.

In the September issue of the Atlantic Magazine, the columnist Andrew Sullivan, fresh from his same-sex marriage in Massachusetts, optimistically predicted an "emerging social consensus" in favor of same-sex marriage. I thought that in his post-nuptial euphoria, he had gotten ahead of the facts, and said so in a letter to the editors of the Atlantic.
Astonishingly, they printed the damned thing in the October issue. I'm really sorry to have been proved a more accurate prophet than Sullivan.