Our Catskills Bed and Breakfast is near Roxbury and Margaretville, NY two villages with large gay and lesbian populations.
With being so I always keep my eyes open to any political events that affect the GLBT comunity.
When we look back at our President we see a mixed bag. On the one hand we elected what we thought was a visionary leader who was going to change the game. Certainly many things have changed for the better but whatever his intentions may have been many have not come to fruition.
With a year and a half or so left in his presidency it may be a good time to philosophically explore the good and the not so good.
I say “philosophically explore” because I do not wish to review every success or failure over the last 6 ½ years but rather see the democratic process in action from various angles.
Within the United States there are two poles pulling at each other and lots of grey area in between.
At one end is a desire for more efficient, transparent and responsive government that holds large corporations accountable for their bad behavior and offers a viable safety net for those citizens in economic need. At the other end are those who seek less government intrusion into personal choices on issues like education, abortion, gay marriage, marijuana and the rules of business. Then there are issues like healthcare, immigration reform and foreign policy.
Much of the public dialogue has been frsamed by the media as a tug of war between right wing small government eccentrics who believe the world is 5,000 years old, that all Muslims are terrorists, and that global warming doesn’t exist against “wall street occupier 99%ers” who think centralized government is the solution to our problems, and that either Obama’s vision was dragged down by right wing tea party nuts, intransigent or that he is just a paid employee of 60, old white guy trillionaires hiding in a room somewhere who plan how to control the media and manipulate the world bank, the council of foreign relations and the federal reserve as they brain wash the masses.
All this can be overwhelming and it is not so easy to define which’ what where and when things are happening and who is making them happen. Of course, many of my friends think they have figured it all out.
So once in a while I get to smile because the President does something, or says something that is fundamentally correct. Whether you are on the left or on the right politically, whether you like more intrusive government or less.
Sometimes he just gets it right!
I believe peop le have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. How each of us gets there is a private affair.
Today President Obama struck a blow for this concept by calling for an end of conversion therapy for LGBT youth.
This type of therapy is the worst reflection of misguided religious fervor, it is “crap” psychology, and it is for the most part cruel and abusive. It is the equivalent of forcing a Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist or Wicca youth into therapy and telling them that their faith is a disease they need to be cured of.
What President Obama did by taking this stand was wisdom personified and I congratulate him for it.