Saturday, February 14, 2009

Our New Paint Job in our House

We (Mina and I) changed the color in our living room, kitchen, and hallway from salmon to yellow. Two walls have a textured yellow with red highlights. The yellow or golden color opened up the rooms as compared to the old "brightish" salmon color which we liked for years. We like folk art so that is what you see around the rooms. It was time for a change.

Sharon Raphael

Monday, February 09, 2009

I Am Worried About Obama and Our Gay Agenda

I am hoping Obama's economic stimulus package is passed, the sooner the better. I think he is moving in the right direction when it comes to the economy, My only criticism is that I wish Obama was not reaching out to the Republicans and Fundamentalist Christian leaders so avidly. He reminds me of Clinton who always seemed to want everyone to love him all at the same time which is impossible when one is making hard decisions with the public in mind.

When it comes to our Gay agenda, more equal rights for LGBT folks, the end to the defense of marriage act, Gays in the military and the end of Don't Ask, don't Tell, I am worried. A friend told me that he doesn't think much will happen under Obama regarding LGBT rights at least not in a big way because Obama has made no high level appointments nor does he have high level advisers who are LGBT. I keep thinking maybe there is someone we could cultivate or who we already have but I can't think anyone who is really out besides Barney Frank, the Congressman from Massachusetts.. Unfortunately for us Barney Frank's interests seem to be focused on the financial arena these days not Gay Rights and I am not sure Barney Frank would be the best spokesperson for our cause.

Our best hope seems to reside in the courts and at this moment I am looking at the State Supreme Court of California to see what they do about the insidious anti Gay Marriage bill known as Proposition 8 which was passed because 2% more of the voting public in California who went to the polls for whatever reason voted against Gay Marriage in spite of fact some pollsters say if they voted today, the vote would go the other way. We can hope Obama makes some Supreme Court appointments that go our way but there again it seems his job will be just replacing aging or ailing Democratic or liberal to moderate leaning top court judges.

Obama talks a good game about LGBT issues. When criticized for the Rick Warren episode, Obama's defense was to say he was
a staunch supporter of LGBT equality but the words lately ring hollow. We need so much change and I don't see it even just beginning for us. I know Obama's number one priority is the economy but LGBT citizens pay taxes and work and many hire people from all walks of life and across all job types. Why not enlist the help of the vibrant Gay community when it comes to stimulating the economy.

I know one thing, when we were getting married in California , all 36,000 of us we spent a lot of money buying all kinds of items and commodities to enhance our marriages. We are the artists, the make up people in Hollywood, the truck driver on the road, the manufacturer and creators of all kinds of businesses that count in America, clothing, perfume, makeup, furniture, food, restaurants and everything else under the sun we can think of. We are creative and have perpetual energy if only given the chance. Why not channel many LGBT folks into Obama's stimulus package. Yes, why not indeed. We are ready and willing. Let's go. We are the change you can count on.

Sharon Raphael, Long Beach