READ AND HEED!

READ AND HEED!
THEN, GET NAKED AND PROCEED!

Followers

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Red Ribbon Campaign


Tomorrow, December 1, 2010, is World AIDS Day. This date is set aside by UNAIDS for all of us to commemorate, in whatever way we deem fit, our lives as a world living with HIV/AIDS. It is traditional, on this day, to wear a red awareness ribbon as a visual reminder to all that this disease is affecting us all.

Like it or not, this global pandemic has already had a profound impact on our lives. Economically, culturally, politically, spiritually and socially, none of us have escaped its influence. It has changed the way we live forever.

Please, take the time now to create a red ribbon (if you don't already have one). Join me tomorrow in wearing it. If possible, bring along an extra to share with a friend, coworker or stranger.

If, by chance, you're nude all day tomorrow, use body paint to design one on your pecs. No body paint? No problem. Red lipstick will do just fine.

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Cyber Monday

It's after the Thanksgiving holiday and instead of returning to normal, life even begins to become increasingly chaotic. The Christmas/Winter season shopping frenzy starts in full force. Forget whatever normal life is until after the entire month of December. Consumerism at its best/worst and rudeness at its height. All this surrounding a time celebrating peace on earth and goodwill towards all. In my humble opinion, all too much stress that too often overshadows the true meaning of the season.

One of the recent phenomenons of our technological century is the growth of Cyber Monday. It is perfect for all of us naturists/nudists. Not the cyber frustration of the day itself but the concept of being able to avoid the crowds, traffic and madness as we indulge in this materialistic obsession. Why? We nudists now have the freedom of shopping online while completely naked. That's right! At the very minimum (no pun intended), we are now able to forego the additional encumbrance of having to don the traditional gay apparel. Now browse and shop totally in the buff!

Of course, shopping from home while nude doesn't provide the complete social nudist experience. Some of us will surf and order solo, minus the brotherhood companionship. However, we do have options to enhance this task. Invite some friends over and encourage them to bring their mobile devices. Provide refreshments and everyone can shop till they drop while sitting in your living room collectively naked.

Power up your desktop if not all your nudist buddies have mobility ability. Allow your guests in the buff to share or alternate online time as they shop. The various opportunities are endless. Let your imagination go with this idea. It's a fun way to enjoy some fellowship as we perform our holiday obligations. We all know, every chore is a little less burdensome if we can do it nude!

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Friday, November 19, 2010

New Gym And Happy Thanksgiving!







Last weekend, I learned a new gym was opening near my condo in Arlington, VA. It's conveniently located between home and office, more so than the one I currently belong to at Landmark Plaza in Alexandria. Actually, I can walk there on nice weekend days when I have the luxury of time. The annual membership is less than half of what I now pay. Brand new equipment and facility! Convenience! Economy! I'd be a bigger fool than what I already am not to take advantage of this opportunity!

So, this past Sunday, my serious man-of-interest and I traipsed off to this not-yet-opened establishment and individually enrolled. What we discovered during the orientation and registration process is that this is an extremely accepting, inclusive and progressive business. Despite the fact that we don't consider ourselves, at this moment, an official couple, we were offered that option without any sign of judgment. A very generally-friendly and queer-friendly staff who were most anxious to please and to serve.

The accompanying photos were on Wednesday of this week, the official opening day.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Tonight, my man and I are going away for the Thanksgiving week. We're spending the weekend and the beginning of the next week with my family (including Twin and Cuz along with their partners). Thanksgiving Day and the following weekend, we're with his family.

I wish all of you a safe and happy Thanksgiving! I'm grateful for your friendship and support.

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Full Time Or Part Time Nudist?



Over the years of my naturist/nudist life, I've often pondered this question. As I sit on a clothing-optional public beach, exactly how many of us are here simply for the experimentation or here for the social nudist experience? How many of us are here for a one-time only nude outing or because we are avid naturists? Are there more of us here as practitioners of naked culture rather than only occasional or one-time participants? How many of us are here solely out of curiosity? Experience or experiment? Basically: who is and who isn't a nudist? (By the way, I already know: too much imagination. Get a life.)

Sometimes the body language and/or the organizational skills will reveal this. Yet, that isn't a valid gauge. There are some seasoned nudists who are protective and shy and some one-timers who are bold exhibitionists. Not all nudists strut-their-stuff and not all occasionals or one-timers are modest. Some are awkward nude with other genders and younger children. Others may have some discomfort being naked with those of a differing sexual orientation. Physical reaction in a public nudist environment is no indicator of a persons nudist history.

Among us experienced and veteran naturists, I've observed more than a handful who are simply unable to streamline what is and isn't necessary for a day at the beach. I'm always amazed at the amount of baggage they bring with them and baffled as to how they transported it without hiring a moving van and crew. Many of us, through years of practice, have simplified this process into a fine art with minimal needs. Fortunately, yours truly falls into this category. I've now managed to get all essentials into one comfortably stuffed backpack. However, there was a time, not too long ago...

Likewise, I've witnessed numerous one-timers or sporadic nudists pack-it-up-like-a-pro. A small handful of necessities satisfies their needs for a day of sand and surf. They have the uncanny ability to carry in and carry out effortlessly. They could probably teach us lifers a thing or two about packing and preparation. For them, it's that easy and simple. Almost like a second nature.

Of course, we all know that the exact opposites hold true in all of these situations. There is no concrete formula or rule that explains all of our actions or behaviors. Whether a nude (one-time or occasional) or a nudist (practitioner), we all respond to the best of our abilities. We make what's best for us work the best for each of us individually. There is no established, foolproof visual guide to assessing nude experience.

Naked or clothed, our reactions and body language may reveal volumes about our own personality and show little or nothing of our respective history of nudity. What we see at the beach is nothing more than the image of a man, nude, just being himself. It's really that simple. What it does demonstrate is our level of acceptance and comfort with our own physical body. We are what we are, nothing more, nothing less. It also tells us that he, like ourselves, is devoting some leisure time in celebrating his nakedness. Until we make his acquaintance and get to know about him, that's all we can discern based solely upon appearance.

Does our individual nudist history make a big difference? Absolutely not. (Exception: Me. Overactive imagination). We're just sharing a moment in time in a finite space. What does make a major difference is that we treat each other with respect. In doing so, we are all able to enjoy our nudity together. That is the reason we are at the beach to begin with, right?

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

"The Nak'd Truth" Update


Just a few notes here to keep you current on the progress of the development of the reality TV show: "The Nak'd Truth." If you're here for the first time or you missed the previous entries, they were posted here on October 19, and November 3. Check them out for background information and photographs. The November 3 article does contain some of my personal reflections about this production. This being noted, each of us are free to make our own conclusions regarding the veracity of "The Nak'd Truth."

First and foremost to report is that even in the pre-filming phase, the proposed show is generating not only media but also broadcast interest. As of last Thursday, November 11, at least three major networks had expressed "serious interest" in this project. There are hints and rumors of a possible fourth. As fickle as the broadcast media is, this might fuel a bidding war. Given the popularity of reality TV, this wouldn't be a surprise. Every network seeks to push the proverbial envelope just a little further in order to increase ratings. Then, again, all this attention could change tomorrow morning. Easy come, easy go.

Second, the auditions for the potential cast members concluded the first round this past weekend. The live auditions were conducted last week at the filming site, Caliente Nudist Resort and Spa in Land O'Lakes, Florida (Tampa/St. Petersburg area). More than 400 wannabe participants responded online with photographs (full nudity was not required). This list was then narrowed to 125 live interviews. The screen tests were held on the pooldecks at Caliente before a panel of five judges. Streamlines of the interviews are available on the resort website.

One judge did ask if the prospective cast member would have a problem sharing a room with someone of a different sexual orientation. At the very least, the subject was addressed. We now know that the queer was allowed to express his discomfort with rooming with a hetero. Or, is it vice versa? A hetero being permitted to share his homophobia? In my humble opinion, the jury is still out on that one. Does a gay man/woman have equal opportunity on this show? Was the question based on respect for diversity or conformity to preconceived uniformity? These are questions for your consideration. You decide what's real.

Third, at the minimum, one male-to-female transgender person qualified as a semi-finalist and was granted an audition. I really hope this choice was based on the desire to be inclusional and not sensational. I tend to be an optimist and not a pessimist. In the circumstance of this individual, I want to believe that I am right. I don't want to see anyone abused, exploited or hurt. At the moment, the competition to gain an edge in the reality TV market is fierce. The temptation is always present to use someone for the sake of ratings.

Finally, "The Nak'd Truth" is produced by Atlantic Overseas Pictures. The company is based in Los Angeles. Plans are for the show to begin filming in about a month and it is expected to last for 30 days. The cast is required to remain nude during the entire shooting schedule. The producers hope to air the show sometime next year.

Personally, I've never been a fan of reality TV. Give me a biography, a comedy, a documentary or a drama. Educate me or entertain me. After all, I live in the real world and deal with reality 24/7. As to watching "The Nak'd Truth," I remain uncertain. I continue to have concerns as to amateur and inexperienced nudes portraying and representing our culture of nakedness. How authentic and truthful can they honestly be?

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Dennis And Us



I have a serious man-of-interest in my life. We've been in a relationship now for almost nine months and are working together to move us into the next level. Like everyone else, we have our ups and downs but, at least, we're going forward. We aren't stagnating nor sliding backwards. Each day continues to offer a new and exciting discovery about us as individuals and us as a couple. We are, indeed, a work-in-progress.

I've published here previously of my long-time fantasy infatuation/lust of Dennis Rodman and me. That hasn't changed in the least. Yes, my man-of-interest is aware of this dream of Dennis: his exotic eyes, broad nose, full lips, large hands and muscular body. Now, this fantasy only gets hotter and steamier. Last night, in my dreams, my man and I were involved in a three-way with my ace-rebounder (Dennis Rodman). We did things together and to each other between the sheets that sent every Mormon and Republican on the East Coast scattering to the four winds.

Our threesome didn't end after we all climaxed. In this dream, our erections lasted for days and the fuck-fest an eternity. That's the beauty of dreams! No restrictions. No expiration date.

Does the inclusion of my man-of-interest in my nocturnal fantasies indicate our relationship is progressing? Perhaps. Hopefully. That's the direction I'd like for us to go. Am I willing to share Dennis Rodman with him? Evidently so. I currently have a full-size bed. Do I now need to buy a larger one? The thought did cross my mind.

But, why limit our sexploits to just the bedroom? By the way, can I get an instant replay of last night?

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Much Ado About Nothing

The year-long Pentagon study/survey concerning GLBT service members and their possible openly and freely being on active duty in the U.S. military was leaked to the public yesterday. After the bitter, contentious, homophobic and hostile behavior by American senators these past several years, this report emerged to bite them on their collective asses. All this hatred, posing, posturing and xenophobia is now clearly a prime example of government waste. This document demonstrates exactly how far the Republicans are out of sync with public opinion in this country. Thank you Senator John McCain, (R-AZ) and your cronies for showing all of the American people and the rest of the world precisely what anatomical part of your party's iconic elephant rests on your shoulders.

The results of this study, despite earlier claims that it was both biased and homophobic, are remarkable. It shows that more than 70% of the armed forces personnel indicate no problems with gays and lesbians serving openly in the U.S. military. The predicted false charges of disruption of discipline and a severe loss of moral should LGBT people be permitted to be open about their sexuality proved unfounded. The repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) will NOT cause the widespread hysteria and panic that opponents of repeal argued. The vast majority of defense responders aren't overly concerned about having same gender loving people within their ranks.

There is no time like the present to correct this injustice and to remove this discriminatory policy. Senator Harry Reid, (D-NV) needs to develop the backbone to schedule a vote and do whatever is necessary to force his Lame Dick session of the Senate to follow the House of Representatives and end this bigotry. Not only is this ban unenforceable, it's unconstitutional and un-American.

By the way, Senators McCain and Reid, I have a special treat for you both. I'm serving baked crow topped with bullshit ice cream for you this evening. You two are the exclusive guests. Seating at my table is at 7:00 pm. Don't be late!

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Nude Novice Notes: Mobile Communication Devices


Our broader society has become so dependent on instant communication that it's hard for us to think of a time when we can remain outside the loop for even a period of one hour. The same is true for us within our culture of nudity. We are so accustomed to being connected that we resent being denied our access to mobile communication/information with family and friends, specifically, and the world, generally. Some of us simply are unable to function or survive without it.

This presents a somewhat difficult situation for us naturists/nudists, whether novices or veterans. When we are naked, how do we manage/secure/store our communication devices? None of us want to carry them around with us (especially the Deaf since we communicate manually). Then there is the human tendency for forgetfulness. We become too distracted socially and neglect to pick up our tool as we migrate from one group to another.

First and foremost, let's remember our manners. If the host(s) or sponsoring organization of a naked social event prohibit mobile devices, then adhere to the policy or just get dressed and leave. It is that simple. Those are our choices. We make our decision and get on with our lives. Remember, it is their function and we are all merely guests.

If these communication items are allowed, then plan, in advance, as to how to make this permission to work best. The fanny pack discussed in the September notes is an option. Just drop it in along with keys, wallet, whatever, then zip it shut. Another possible choice is one used by Cuz and several close friends. As Deaf men, we always keep our PCDs (personal communication device) on vibrate. They simply wear a narrow belt around their waist and loop or clip the case to it. Personally, I have a neck-strap case for my sidekick.

As always, the purpose of these notes are to assist novice nudists to plan and prepare for their social nudity experience. Be as creative and as innovative as you like. Do what is comfortable for you so that you can be you, naturally!

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Random Thoughts




THE POPE SHOULD CHECK HIS PALACE FIRST

This past weekend, Pope Benedict of the Roman Catholic Church was on a two-day visit to the Kingdom of Spain. In his sermon during Mass on Sunday, the Bishop of Rome extolled Europeans to return to and rediscover their Christian roots. Odd words coming from the leader of the largest community of faith in Christendom. Given the current crisis of homophobia and pedaphilia rampant in the Catholic Church, shouldn't his message have been directed to the Universal Church instead? Perhaps the Supreme Pontiff would be credible if he encouraged his flock to return to the core values of Christianity such as faith, hope and love; with the greatest of these being love. That, after all, is what acceptance, forgiveness and tolerance means.

Pope Benedict should retire whoever writes his material. Historians have documented the belligerent and bloody Crusades, the barbarism of the Inquisition and the blatant greed and debauchery of the Papacy over the past millenium. The indifference and blind eye policy of the Vatican during the Nazi Holocaust (directed against the differently abled, the Gypsies, the homosexuals, the Jews, etc.) is remembered. Maybe the Holy Father is better served recalling the wisdom of the phrase: popes who live in glass palaces should not throw stones.
*****

2010 ELECTIONS RETRO

Election Day in the USA is over and most of the results are official. We already know, it wasn't a good day for progressive liberals in this country. It most certainly was not a fruitful day for the GLBT community. That much is obvious to us all. The flame that energized, inspired and mobilized us in November, 2008, was, somewhere along the way, extinguished on November 2, 2010. What went wrong? What happened? Unfortunately, despite all the media commentaries, we'll never know the entire truth. That's why here, at least, further discussion isn't forthcoming. It simply isn't productive. It only divides us rather than unites us.
*****

LAME DICK CONGRESS

No, that isn't a typographical error, it is my own epitaph for this recent Congress. The entire seating has been one limp cock, not just the November - December post election term. The sole exception is Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of Representatives. Her leadership enabled the passage through her domain of responsibility of both the repeal of DADT and the clearance of ENDA. The Honorable Representative Pelosi (D-CA) possessed the balls/cahunas to get the job done.

Her Senate counterpart, Harry Reid (D-NV) proved himself to be the Supreme Eunuch of the Senate. He lacked the anatomy and resolve to match her achievements. His spineless and uninspiring performance in his chamber of this Congress warrants the entire sitting the name, Lame Dick. His inability and inertia have disappointed the nation and President Obama. He's from Nevada, small wonder what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Given his anatomical deficiency, nothing happens there at all!
*****

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Good Monday Morning!



Now, wouldn't this be a great way to begin this week. Just imagine if we all woke up and had this sign glaring at us as we made our journey to work. This would DEAFinitely ruffle more than a few feathers and piss some people off! However, it would also make more than a few of us extremely happy! Hell, this is a great start to any day!

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Friday, November 5, 2010

I Need To Slow Down


Lately, I've been very busy and rushing around, trying to do it all. You know the feeling. So much, that I'm finding myself doing stupid more often than usual. Like going to the gym and when I'm changing, realizing that I forgot my jockstrap. Or arriving at work and remembering that I left my lunch on the dining room table. I even walked up the steps to my condo and discovered that I left my sidekick in my office. All these situations happened to me this week. We all have periods like this when things just don't seem to fit. What I did last night let me know that I need to slow down in my life and remember to b-r-e-a-t-h-e!

I learned from past experience to keep my auto keys and my house keys on separate lanyards. After parking my car, I got out and promptly locked the door. Glancing back inside, I saw my house keys sitting on the passenger seat. Shit! I live in a secure building so there was no way to get inside on my own to retrieve my spare car keys so I could unlock my car door and grab the house keys. So, in the rain, I patiently waited outside my building for a neighbor to arrive and I could gain entry.

My current man of serious interest had to work late in downtown DC, so he wasn't an option. After waiting for almost forty-five minutes, the woman who lives below me finally came home. She wrote me a note asking if I was okay. When I went to pen her a reply, I noticed the lanyard with my car keys dangling from my neck. All I needed to do was just unlock the car door and pick up my keys! No reason whatsoever to wait outside in the cold rain.

I knew right then and there that I needed to completely discard any tasks that I planned to accomplish that evening. I needed to focus on slowing down, relaxing and clear my mind of all the useless clutter. I was becoming too proficient in doing stupid for one week.

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Flu Shot

Sometimes, a man has to do what a man has to do. I'm no big fan of needles, especially one that's going to stick me! It's the advent of the flu season here in the Mid-Atlantic states and being the responsible naturist/nudist that I am, I took my flu shot. I'm nude around all my naked brothers, in close proximity, during the winter months. Because of the weather, we have to be inside in a closed environment, so why not take the preventative measure and have the vaccination? It helps to protect us all. In some situations (my place of employment), it's absolutely free and administered on work time.

In the past, this never caused any problem. Last year, I even received two innoculations: one for the seasonal virus and another one for the H1N1 strain. Both with no adverse reactions nor complications of any sort. It was a proverbial piece of cake and I remained healthy throughout the year. Not the same story this time around. I had my shot yesterday and by late afternoon, I was feeling weak, nauseated and with chills. Symptons very similar to the onset of influenza. After work, I went directly home and to bed.

This morning, I woke up feeling fine and energized. Like my usual self. Only after stretching did I discover some pain and soreness in my upper-left arm (my shot-spot). At the gym, I was only able to complete my abdominal and leg routines. It was just too uncomfortable to attempt any of my upper body/arm exercises.

My little discomfort aside, I encourage everyone to get their flu shot. We all benefit from this simple prevention strategy. My soreness will subside as the day progresses. Better a couple of hours of minor pain than fourteen days or more of the flu. Protect yourself, your family and friends and our queer nudist fraternity.

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Nudes Wanted!


That's right, folks! At last, someone, somewhere, actually wants some nude people to actually apply for something. In this depressed economy, it turns out to be a real paying job. Unbelievable? Damn right! But, you can bet your discarded fig leaf or loincloth that it is legitimate. And, that's not all, my naturist, queer brothers. Exposure here (sorry, no pun intended) may open doors for additional lucrative contracts in the future. Now, before you jump bare-assed in front of your camera, please read the fine print. As with everything else in life, there are certain conditions and restrictions that apply.

First, reference my posting here for October 19, 2010: Nudity Comes To Reality TV. This article provides background on "The Nak'd Truth" reality TV show and a photo of one of the pristine pools at this prospective workplace. This show is being filmed at the Caliente Resort (nudist) in Land O' Lakes, Florida (near Tampa). I've been to this destination twice and it is very upscale and quite nice. It is not geared for the budget-conscientious traveller.

Second, the qualifications for this role are clear. One must be between the ages of 20-35 years old and completely new to nudism. In other words, no young naturist need apply. If you practice nudity, you're out. I realize that I'm automatically excluded on the age and the experience criteria, but isn't that just a little bit too discriminatory? You don't even want a real nudist on your reality nudist show? How real is that?

No matter, visibility is crucial in educating the general public about our culture of nakedness. Or, is it? Is reality TV the way we want the public to see us? After all, it's all about ratings, sexual tension and drama. As nudists, how many of us experience all this in the reality of our daily lives? The fact that the producer is seeking six men and six women underscores the sexual angle (although some reality shows have featured a gay cast member).

Then there is the maturity factor. They're using all nudist virgins. Aren't they focusing more on the physical and less on the beauty of nudity? These nude-for-pay novices will be nervous in front of a camera as it is, then add nakedness into the mix? How often will they refer to "thingy" for cock/penis and "thingies" for breasts? In a male same gender loving social nudist setting, when was the last time any of us referenced a "thingy?" Personally, that's something you wear driving to a nudist social!

I hope the show is a success but I don't harbor any expectations. Several major studios have expressed interest but no contract has been signed. I know already that it won't educate the general public but is may spark some curious inquiries concerning social nudism. It just might generate enough interest that someone will consider a serious portrayal of our culture of nudity, gay or otherwise.

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Nude And Voting Deaf

I am an early morning riser (in more ways than one, pun intended). I have been all my life. This being Election Day, I put on one of my favorite nudecentric T-shirts, donned a pair of sweatpants and sweatshirt, shoes, socks and a fleece hoodie and walked the three blocks to my voting precinct in Arlington, Virginia. I cast my ballot. I am proud to say that I have never, ever, in my entire life voted for a Republican nor an independent.

When I vote, I intentionally don't wear boxers. I like the feeling of my cock and balls bouncing between my legs as I walk to the school where I vote. I always wear a shirt with a nudecentric message because I am, after all, a proud nudist (even though it is November and it's concealed under a sweatshirt). I try to exercise my right to vote as close to being nude as legally possible. Underneath my clothes, I am, after all, naked; just like everyone else waiting to vote.

Next, there is the issue of voting while Deaf. Believe me, it's probably easier for me to gain access to the Oval Office than to cast my ballot as a Deaf citizen. When I approach the sign-in table, I know that I need to produce three credentials: my voter registration card, my photo ID (VA drivers license) and my medical certification of Deafness. I also point to my ear and shake my head in the negative to visually indicate my differing ability. I then fingerspell my name.

The sign-in person then looks at me, totally confused, and inevitably turns to the person beside them as they both turn to look me over. Next, one of them summons the election official to the table. They show this person my credentials and, once again, I repeat the procedure of visually reminding this person that I'm Deaf. It never fails. The election official then looks at me and starts talking to me. At this point, I always begin to gesture that I don't hear and that they need to write down what they need to know. Reluctantly, after several times of gesturing this, they finally do so. It is at this point that they inform me that I am required to state my name, orally. Never mind that I've produced a state-issued drivers license that indicates that I am Deaf and medical documentation to support this fact.

At this point, the precinct captain then writes that they need to contact the voter registrar for Arlington County before they can permit me to vote. Now, I bought my condo in September, 1995, and have lived here since then. I have voted at Abingdon Elementary school in every election and each time I go to vote, I have to wait for that phone conversation to take place. By this time, I can physically sense the frustration and resentment of those waiting in line behind me. Not to mention that all these impatient people are now privy to my business. I am a Deaf man trying to vote.

Usually, this is where the problem ends. The voter registrar confirms my right to vote without having to state my name. Only two times in my lifetime (thus far) have I had to produce my American passport to support my citizenship status.

Despite all the challenges and obstacles, I'm still bouncing and happy to vote my cause. I'm always excited as I approach the voting terminal and registering my decision. I continue to try to make it as naked an experience as allowed by law. I don't permit the Deaf issues to deter my enthusiasm. No one has the right to discourage my participation in the election process. I spent too much time and energy in justifying and proving that privilege.

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Vote On Tuesday

The mid-term elections are tomorrow. All of the seats in The House of Representatives and a number of those in the Senate are being contested. This electoral process is proving to be a very crucial one for both our nation and our same gender loving culture. Whatever the outcome, this vote weighs heavy for the future of our queer community, regardless of where we live.

Many GLBT voters are feeling a sense of abandonment and betrayal by both the current administration and the Democrats. This marginalization stems from the inability of the incumbent government to honor campaign promises from the previous election. In particular are the failure to implement ENDA (Employment Non-Discrimination Act), the repeal of DADT (Don't Ask, Don't Tell) and the repeal of DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act). Some think these were just empty pledges in order to get gays to the polls in 2008 and the plan was to ignore these issues once elected. These same individuals plan to boycott the election completely and are urging others to do likewise.

The 2010 election features a radicalized Republican Party due to the emergence of the tea party movement. This extremist takeover of the opposition has lead it in the direction of total exclusion, intolerance and hatred. These fanatics espouse an agenda that clearly conflicts with our Constitution and our national sense of equality. As a result, some moderates within this party are similarly disillusioned and are also indicating they will stay away from the polls tomorrow.

Politics, by nature is a game of narcissism. It is a competition of power and the result is a winner-take-all mentality. During civics and government classes in school, we are all indoctrinated into the theory of democracy and are not schooled in the reality of democracy. The theory is valid when each person has one vote and everyone participates and casts a vote for a candidate to represent us. The reality is that not everyone votes and more likely than not, the person we vote for represents a myriad of interests, many often in conflict, and not specifically our personal concerns. The bottom line: most of us are disappointed and very few of us are satisfied with any elected official. None of us are perfect, constituent or elected.

Staging an electoral boycott may offer some immediate self-gratification and self-satisfaction. Hell, momentarily, it may even be self-righteous. However, the question remains: What about tomorrow? Does staying at home on Election Day enact ENDA? Will it repeal DADT or DOMA? Will not voting empower the fundamentalists and extremists success in denying our equality altogether and force us backwards? Do we abdicate our fate to others?

Consider all options. Think about the consequences. React and respond accordingly and responsibly on Election Day. The future of both country and community rests within each one of us. Self-determination is only available to those who act to preserve that privilege.

Peace! Get naked. Enjoy!