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Today's political movement musings

I performed in a staged reading of "8" last night, and we were talking about how just 4 years ago California voted against marriage equality, and then this year the tide turned in 4 other states. It reminded me of the fight in Colorado in 1992, which was just about simple legal protections - voters passed it and it was seen as a huge blow to equality, yet that conservative wave didn't last long, and now state equal protection laws are seen as usual and normal. Now we have marriage equality in 9 states plus DC, and it seems likely that it won't be too much longer before DOMA is struck down as unconstitutional.

It made me wonder - what happened to those waves of intolerance? Like Anita Bryant in years gone by, they seem to rise up strong, but then dissipate after only a few short years. Besides the inevitable backlash intolerance always seems to garner, and of course the optimism that human beings are somewhat less hateful than some people want to believe, a more cynical side of me ponders if perhaps these righteous crusaders pour so much energy into these causes that they too quickly burn their believers out. I would love to know if there were a sizable number of people who are opposed to marriage equality that just didn't bother to go vote. "Eh, I don't like it, but whatever - it doesn't really matter all that much to me anymore." I mean, how many times can you watch those "save the children" ads on TV before you just sort of get bored by them? (Similarly it also makes me wonder about how progressives are able to sustain their base's enthusiasm through the tough times of defeat; or, perhaps, it's those tough times of defeat that sustains their enthusiasm, i.e., we need adversity to rally around?)

Of course, if I'm right, then I encourage the radical right to continue in their zealous efforts. :)

Comments

( 4 comments — Comment )
dracut
Nov. 15th, 2012 11:09 am (UTC)
I suspect people get wise to the continual crying that the big gay wolf is coming. They can see that nothing bad happens elsewhere, so it's unmasked as just a bunch of hooey.
esprix
Nov. 15th, 2012 03:39 pm (UTC)
Well there's that, too. :)
toll_booth
Nov. 16th, 2012 01:44 am (UTC)
I wrote about this on my journal a couple days ago.

BTW, one of the major shifts in the last year, I think, was African-Americans. All of a sudden they are coming on board in support of LGBT rights. I think that Obama's coming out in support of them had a big impact on this.

LGBT rights are here to stay. Haters gonna hate. If they want "limited government," they are free to move to Somalia.
esprix
Nov. 16th, 2012 06:11 pm (UTC)
Here in Maryland there were a LOT more black preachers coming out in support of marriage equality, and that was a surprise. I still think there's a lot of homophobia in a lot of black/urban/evangelical congregations, of course, but it's nice to know the tides are turning, if only among the more liberal-minded churches.
( 4 comments — Comment )

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