Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Picture Speaks ...


Another guest post by Dana


Being that I am somewhat of an information junky, one of the things I really enjoy is my CNN news feed. Often times there are little bits of news that I never hear or read anywhere else. Yesterday I came across THIS article.

Jeff Sheng has spent the last two years on his "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" exhibit - photographic stories of the gay and bisexual men and women who serve in the U.S. military. And because his subjects are forced to keep their sexual orientations under wraps in order to serve, Sheng's photos are portraits without faces.

Think about that for a moment. The men and women who serve this country - who lay their own lives on the line to protect our rights - must hide their faces.

There was a time, not too long ago, when I questioned the wisdom of repealing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," but seeing Sheng's photography, thinking about what it means, and remembering my own struggles with my sexuality while serving in the military, I cannot justify anything other than a repeal.

I look at these photos and know that these men and women deserve better than what we've given them.


Saturday, November 6, 2010

Out...I've GOT to get OUT

This weekend is "Thanksgiving" with the in-laws, since they are in town. Stress. And why I'm cleaning at 4am on a Saturday before heading to the gym.

But NEXT weekend is the annual "Girls Weekend at the Lodge!" Four years in a row. The core group never changes. Six lesbians.

We all met at the local lesbian bar one night and well, the rest is history.

Last time we were there we played Guitar Hero the entire time. That's just how we roll. A bunch of teenagers trapped in adult bodies. Relaxing. PJs. Great food. Laughing until you're crying. Lying on your back looking up at the Milky Way on a clear night, freezing half to death.

Here's hoping there are a few golden leaves left next weekend!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010



Another guest post by Dana


Today, I am NOT doing something that I haven't NOT done in quite some time (How's that for a triple negative?). I am NOT going to vote.

This is a BIG deal for me. I feel voting is a civic responsibility - a right we are given that we are obligated to carry out - and I am NOT going to do it.


Call it cynicism. Call it a personal protest. Call it being irresponsible. I really don't care. I am FED UP with politics, politicians and people.

I have read quite a few disturbing blog posts, comments and tweets where people seem to think the process of voting - of walking into the polling place and pushing a button - is what is important. They brag that they intend to "piss off" the other party - that they would NEVER consider a candidate from the other party. They see elections as some freakish opportunity to "stick it" to people who may think differently than they do.

That is NOT what voting should be about.

Honestly? I think there should be some sort of pretest for voting. A set of questions that you must answer 70% correctly in order to move on to the actual voting process. I'd even be willing to go multiple choice.

The questions wouldn't have to be difficult. Here in Illinois they could ask things like "Name three of the six candidates for U.S. Senator" or "What elected office would be impacted by the proposed Illinois Constitutional Amendment?"

Hell, they could even do a fill-in-the-blank test giving you the names of 10 candidates that you must identify as R, D or neither R nor D.

In Illinois I am saddled with impossible choices - voting for the people I think might be the least corrupt (which isn't saying a whole hell of a lot).

Quite frankly, I don't like any of the "viable" (i.e. Republican or Democrat)
candidates - my vote would likely be along party lines because everyone sucks equally - and I take huge issue with ANYONE (including me) voting party lines just because they don't want the other side to win.

Get a grip people. Voting should NOT be about showing up at your polling place and getting an "I voted" sticker so you can take a picture of it and post it on twitter. It should NOT be about looking at a ballot, shrugging your shoulders and pushing the button for R or D rather than for the candidate and their platform.

I am NOT voting today. Are you?

*EDIT* After much thought, and a little prodding, I decided to vote on the SINGLE "non-candidate" issue on my ballot - an Amendment to the Illinois Constitution. There was a LONG line at the polling place with a 45 minute wait. I watched at least 10 people look at the line, then turn around and walk out.