New Geography of Same-Sex Couples

Recently, the U.S. Census Bureau released data ranking cities with the highest population of same-sex couples. Now, my first guess would naturally place San Francisco at the top of this list, and I would have been right…21 years ago.

Number 1 this year was awarded to Provincetown, Mass., at the tip of Cape Cod. This was surprising to me, but the dispersal of gay couples from traditional safe havens to more far-flung locations, reflects a positive trend in the community.

According to demographer Gary Gates, as quoted in the NY Times, the reason for this trend is the “growing influence of baby boomers, who became adults in the 1960s and 1970s, when the social stigma was starting to ease, and are more willing than previous generations to stand up and be counted.”

There is unease surrounding this survey, however, as it did not take into account any single members of the gay community, while others doubt its accuracy based on how little-known some of the highly ranked small towns were. The Census Bureau is still working out the kinks, however, as last year was only the third time the survey included same-sex couples.

In general, I think that it is positive to see more same-sex couples living farther from their comfort zones. In the end, a positive attitude towards homosexuality spreading throughout the United States can never be a bad thing.

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“Glittering” Activism

Recently, a new trend has sprung up in the world of gay rights activism. It’s called glitterbombing, or glittering if you’re trying to eliminate violent connotations.

So far, several presidential candidates (mostly republicans) have been glittered, as well as the former speaker of the house, Newt Gingrich, and others opposing gay rights.

I’m not quite sure how I feel about this new movement. On the one hand, I think it’s witty and cute. It’s 100% nonviolent, which I am all for, and has the potential to harm virtually no one.

On the other hand, I’m left gawking and thinking “Wait…really!? Glitter!?” I mean come on people, aren’t most supporters of gay rights also supporters of dashing stereotypes and slaying prejudices? There aren’t very many ‘gayer’ stereotypes that this group could have reinforced than a love for all things sparkly and flamboyant. Don’t we want to be taken seriously? These activists are making their position obvious to their opponents, yes, but I personally think that this is a laughable way of doing so. Literally, my first reaction was to laugh! So if they wanted to be taken seriously, I don’t think this was the right way of going about it.

Maybe if the group had done this once, then held a press conference or made a public announcement that apologized if anyone was offended by a little glitter, but then argued their position in a serious way, I would have been more on their side. But this seems a little bit trite for my tastes, especially when we’re approaching election time.

What do you all think?

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Back in Action

My dear followers,

As I’m sure you have noticed, I have taken a short vacation from my blog. This small break from my usual schedule was due to a little known phenomenon called “summer vacation.” It may be new to some of you, however I am a busy college student and, like other students, appreciate deeply the few months we are given once a year to unwind and relax. For me that meant spending more time doing what I love, which unfortunately (or fortunately) meant time away from this little blog.

This time of relaxation is drawing to a close, and as signaled by my posting here at all, I am intent on jumping back into the blogosphere. A lot has happened in the world of gay rights over this short break, and I intend fully on writing about the important events that have occurred.

So heads up, internet! Thatgayfamily is back.

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Another Video

Just thought I would post this for you all. It’s a little video I made about some current discussion surrounding same-sex parenting, marriage, etc. Hope you enjoy!

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Google Covers the Gays!

Google is going to cover the gays!

This…is…awesome! Essentially Google is going to “begin covering a cost that gay and lesbian employees must pay when their partners receive domestic partner health benefits, largely to compensate them for an extra tax that heterosexual married couples do not pay.”

This is a great step forward, especially since Google gets so much publicity. Go Google!

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A little bit of ‘Gay Education’

Alright, so I may not agree with everything in this video, especially the representation of the little boy as being gay because he’s dressed up as a teletubby and not to mention the wild stereotyping of the ‘butch’ gay woman and good looking gay man, but I do like the scene it sets between those who are very confused about homosexuality and those who know a little bit more, either firsthand or from research. The user who posted this video wasn’t wildly helpful in explaining where it came from, but I’m assuming the link to the 2007 movie For the Bible Tells Me so, means that it’s from that film.

I do particularly enjoy the part that explains that your genes play a far heavier role in determining your sexual orientation than whether you are left or right handed and that society doesn’t punish the left handed. That’s a pretty damn good point!

Disclaimer: I have not checked up on every fact explored in this video but the movie was produced in 2007 so I’m going to assume that the research is correct and at least fairly up to date.

P.s. I do enjoy that the character who seems to have largest gap in his ‘gay education’ is named Christian. I see what you did there, whoever-made-this-video.

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New Jersey Equality: Two Interpretations

It seems to me that there are (at least) two interpretations when it comes to marriage equality and I have recently found an exemplary example (with impressive alliteration, might I add) simply within the state of New Jersey.

One interpretation of marriage equality for NJ can be seen here at the website for the organization Garden State Equality. Their reasoning for using terms like ‘marriage equality’ and the ‘freedom to marry’ is given on the page that I linked and I will restate here as I agree with it to the fullest:

Like other civil rights organizations, we don’t say “gay marriage” or “same-sex marriage” because same-sex couples simply want the option of “marriage” – the same option with the same nomenclature that opposite-sex couples have. Nothing special, nothing different. That’s why it’s so disingenuous for our opponents to claim that same-sex couples want special rights, not equal rights. Marriage equality is the epitome of wanting otherwise.

This is obviously the interpretation of marriage equality that I find to be superior. It falls right in line with one of my favorite quotes from Liz Feldman, “It’s very dear to me, the issue of gay marriage. Or as I like to call it: ‘marriage.’ You know, because I had lunch this afternoon, not gay lunch. I parked my car; I didn’t gay park it.” Not one homosexual couple is asking for ‘gay marriage,’ they only desire to partake of the same ‘marriage’ that heterosexual couples have always been allowed.

Now, the second interpretation of marriage equality for NJ can be found at this youtube channel and once visited, one can quickly realize why I disagree with this individual’s interpretation of marriage equality, or at least what they are trying to say about it. The name of the channel is newjerseyequality, and to me this is misleading. When given the term ‘equality,’ I tend to think that whoever is using the term is supporting or aiming for equality in the way that Garden State Equality seems to be.

For this youtube user, however, this is not the case. They seem to be using this moniker in order to draw in those who believe in the first interpretation of equality in order to convince them that they are wrong. But it also only takes a moment visiting this youtube channel to realize how absolutely horrible their argument is, and not in the way that I believe that it is wrong or offensive, but in the way that they make their argument.

Take this video from their channel for example:

Do you see the little red caption boxes that keep popping up over this testimony for same-sex marriage? Those are this youtube user’s only way of making and supporting their argument. Without these little boxes, that include no actual facts or reasoning just bare opinions and accusations, the video itself would be ADVOCATING same-sex marriage! The video is a testimonial from lesbian mothers about why they think they deserve to be able to get married. And newjerseyequality’s only way of refuting their message is to caption the video with questions that don’t even make sense relative to the actual dialogue?

Other than the fact that the title of the video is ‘Same Sex “Marriage” is INFERIOR, not EQUAL,’ there is absolutely no argument being made here against same-sex marriage. There are only idiotic statements made with no reasoning or fact as their basis and to me that makes this interpretation of marriage equality the “INFERIOR” one.

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