The more things change, the more they stay the same

Posted by · 6:23 am · October 30th, 2008

Sean Penn in MilkI never got around to linking to Devin Faraci’s well-reasoned piece on the politics of “Milk,” but I want to take a minute to draw your attention to it this morning.  I think it’s a very sound assessment of what the film really does, which is challenge the viewer to be foolish enough to think that the country has carried Harvey Milk’s torch three decades after his assassination.

A little from the piece:

Thirty years later California has another anti-gay Proposition on the ballot, and it seems like the only progress we’ve made is in the numbering, since this one is Prop 8. On the surface Prop 8 doesn’t seem as draconian as Prop 6, but it’s just as cruel and evil at its heart; Prop 8 would ban same-sex marriages in California, which had been ruled constitutional by the California Supreme Court.

Usually we go to see movies about civil rights struggles of the past and they feel like distant nagging voices to us: ‘Hey, black people used to have to sit at the back of the bus! They couldn’t use white people water fountains!’ There’s something safe about these stories, and we’re allowed to shake our head at the ghosts of bigots past or the pathetic, fringe clowns who make up the race hate establishment today. We shake our heads and feel better about ourselves because we’re so progressive and have come a long way, and we feel like we’ve done our part to keep these sorts of civil rights abuses from happening again because we saw this important movie about this important subject.

But the gay rights movement isn’t something from the past*. We’ve made some progress – there are more gay characters on our TV shows than ever before, for example – but it feels like we’re still lagging in so many ways.

Check out the rest here.  And if you’re a Cali resident, it goes without saying.  Vote “No” on Prop. 8 next Tuesday.  Make it clear, make it overwhelming clear that regression is a sin and that these are not the middle ages.  For God’s sake…forward already.

1 Comment Tags: | Filed in: Daily

1 response so far

  • 1 10-30-2008 at 2:50 pm

    Mr. 9 said...

    Prop 8 is a terrible, terrible piece of legislation.

    It’s very hard to believe that a country that’s this close to electing a black man for president is still struggling to accept other differences we have.

    At least, though, it’s in the hands of the voters, so get the word out to not set such a dispicable precedent that other states will be sure to follow if Prop 8 succeeds.

    Good luck to everyone in California.