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Bea Arthur: The Passing Of A Gay Icon

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 7:11 pm - April 25, 2009.
Filed under: Gay America,Gay Culture,Movies/Film & TV

We are having a party tonight at a dueling piano bar in Charlotte. To our great shock, the piano player announced the death of Bea Arthur. In memory of her, the first song was the theme from “Maude”.

I am quite saddened by her passing. I loved her in “The Golden Girls” and thought she would live forever.

I’m having a beer and raising it in a toast to one of my childhood icons, Bea Arthur.


UPDATE (from Dan):  After reading that Maud had died, I headed over to the blog to write out a quick tribute to the great Beatrice and saw that Bruce had similar feelings for this star of stage and screen (big and small).

I can still her voice as Yenta (the Matchmaker) on the cast album for Fiddler on the Roof and only wish Angela Lansbury had reprised her role as Mame in the screen version of the musical.  To see Lansbury opposite Arthur as Vera!  What would a treat that would have been!  So, here, in memory of a truly great lady, I offer their classic duet on friendship:

Invested in the Idea of Obama:
A Reflection on the Anti-Tea Party Animus

Shortly after the success of the Tea Parties, while away from my computer, I pondered the alacrity of so many on the left and in the MSM to smear our movement, calling it Astroturf and dismissing our concerns.  I had an insight on why these protests made so many so hysterical, so I picked up a pen to scribble some notes, but ended up writing a mini-essay which I transcribe here.

Barack Obama wants his grassroots movement to define a generation.  But, in the end, it may end up just defining an election.  Like Jimmy Carter in 1980, President Obama in 2012 will not be able to run for re-election in the same manner he made his first bid for national office as an outsider determined to shaek up the establishment.  Barely three months into office, he has come to define the Washington establishment as have none of his predecessors since George H.W. Bush.

In 2008, he ran on “change,” (a theme which captured the spirit of the times), but after four years in office, he won’t be able to run again on such an amorphous slogan.  Ronald Reagan, by contrast, in election after election successful as well as unsuccessful (failed bids for the GOP nomination in 1968 and 1976), ran on the same ideas.  Since he started to act on those ideas shortly after his inauguration, the Gipper could run on the same ideas in his reelection campaign as he had run on in all first successful bid for national office.

But, when the animating idea of your campaign is the amorphous call for “change,” you’re going to have to run on the changes you implemented.  And big government doesn’t go over well with the American people.

Thirty years hence will we see an abundance of T-shirts and signs sporting Obama’s image at rallies protesting the policies on a future Repubilcan president as we saw such imagery of the Gipper at the Tea Parties?  I doubt it.  Those sporting the image or name (as I did) of Ronald Reagan did so to remind others of the ideas he promoted as an antidote to the policies of the incumbent president.

Yes, people today sport Obama’s image in their homes, on their T-shirts and cars.  But, when your appeal is your ability to advance their hopes in an era where they despised the then-incumbent Administration, as memories of that Administration fade, your image will being to disappear as do most fads when they no longer fit the current zeitgest.


Once again, the needed conversation on gay marriage

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 3:46 pm - April 25, 2009.
Filed under: Civil Discourse,Gay Marriage,Gay Politics

Yesterday, in researching a piece I am writing for Pajamas, I reviewed all my posts on gay marriage going back to November when Proposition 8 passed.

I found a common theme in my postings, decrying all too many gay marriage advocates for substituting name-calling for serious discussion of the issue and urging said advocates to follow the lead of people Jonathan Rauch and make careful arguments for the social change they’re trying to promote.

Less frequently, I discussed the issue of gay marriage as social change.  And it is.  I don’t think we should shy away from talking about it as such.  Some social changes are good things.  It would benefit our (the gay) community to understand why marriage has long been the defining social expression of heterosexual love.  And why it would be a good thing for the institution to serve a similar role for the expression of same-sex love.

Perhaps, I say that a bit clumsily, and perhaps what I call a “common theme” above is mere repetition.  But, if I do repeat myself, it is because I believe I am hammering home a point ofparamount importance — the necessary conversation on gay marriage.

I was flattered that without my prompting, Michelle Malkin so generously excerpted my post chastising those who would rather slur gay marriage opponents than challenge their arguments:

Our society could gain by a serious discussion of gay marriage.  Gay people in particular would benefit from such a conversation.  Yet, the supposed advocates of this change would rather score points in some imaginary contest with conservatives than make a point about the social benefits of extending the benefits of marriage to same-sex couples.

It’s why I believe we need a complete overhaul of leadership of the various gay organizations, particularly those devoted to promoting gay marriage, to replace people who refrain from chastising those who regular paint their adversaries as hate-filled troglodytes with individuals really ready to rumble on the issue.


Beyond Barney; Democrats are Regular Disrememberers

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 2:37 pm - April 25, 2009.
Filed under: Bush-hatred,Dishonest Democrats

It’s not just Barney.  It’s common practice for Democrats to disremember (yes it’s a real word) their past statements and actions when it suits their political interest.

While main leading Democrats are eager to prosecute Bush Administration officials for “torture” because they wanted to waterboard a few high-value terrorism suspects in order to prevent future attacks on our country and citizens, they conventiently forget that they were briefed on the very topic shortly after 9/11 and raised no objections.

As Porter Goss, then c hairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence reminds us, “On a bipartisan basis, we asked if the CIA needed more support from Congress to carry out its mission against al-Qaeda.”  No wonder he finds that, “A disturbing epidemic of amnesia seems to be plaguing my former colleagues on Capitol Hill.”

In their zeal to “get” Republicans, they forget their own past support of programs they now lambaste their partisan adversaries for supporting.

Barney, You Can’t Hide Your Lyin’ Words

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 4:46 am - April 25, 2009.
Filed under: Blogging,Dishonest Democrats,Economy,New Media

Every time I get tired of blogging about Barney Frank, he rears his ugly head and says something which if a Republican in his position had said it would invite ridicule and raise questions of competence.

The latest story goes beyond the Massachusetts Democrat’s consistent refusal to acknowledge how actions he took and reforms he blocked helped trigger the financial meltdown.  Now, he, in the words of Sister Toldjah who (via Michelle Malkin‘s Buzzworthy) alerted me to the story, “is trying to re-write history with respect to the role he played in helping enable the collapse of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.”  In the past, he could get away with it because the media watchdogs, even eager to pounce at the slightest Republican indiscretion, gave Democrats a pass whenever they misrepresented their own record.

But, now the unhappy Democrat has to contend with conservative bloggers, eager to dig into politicians’ records.  And after catching Barney deliver a whopper on the Tavis Smiley Show, blogger Morgen at Verum Serum did some digging.

First, here’s Barney claiming that he never pushed home ownership on low income people because, well, they can’t afford ’em:

Then, rooting around for “the most suitable example” of Barney “extolling the virtues of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in facilitating home ownership for those that would not otherwise qualify,” he “stumbled across” a 2005 speech Barney made on the House floor doing just that–and also dismissing notions of a coming housing bubble.  This tenacious blogger makes the video available for the first time on the web: