Showing posts with label Politics. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Politics. Show all posts

Thursday, May 21, 2015

I Need A Hero!

By Mona Lott

I’ve been under attack since I was a kid. The Gallegos family three houses down would throw snowballs at me, but they wrapped them in rocks first. Russell Harmon pushed me off my bike on my way home from first grade so he could beat me up. Mike Donovan tormented me every day in 7th grade gym class until I finally couldn’t take it anymore and I threw a full can of Arid Extra Dry spray deodorant at him narrowly missing his head and screamed, “LEAVE ME THE F**K ALONE!!” That temper and my sense of humor combined created a force shield so powerful that in high school they didn’t even bully me in person anymore, they wrote nasty shit on anonymous notes and had them passed to me so I didn't know who they came from. By the way Simon Suarez, I knew.

Now I’m approaching the ripe old age of fifty and even though those childhood wounds have healed leaving faint scars, I’m still being wounded every day. Mike Pence signed the Religious Freedom law and makes intolerance and discrimination against the GLBT community legal. POW!

Then Ted Cruz, in one of many anti-gay statements, declared, “We look at the jihad that is being waged right now, in Indiana, and in Arkansas, going after people of faith who respect the biblical teaching that marriage is the union of one man and one woman." Sucker punch. "Hey, look over there!" BAM!!

In April, 700 Club leader Pat Robertson warned that if the Supreme Court strikes down bans on same-sex marriage, Christians in America will soon be “the victims of vicious, vicious attacks,” just like the angels who visited Sodom and were nearly raped by “virulent homosexuals.” WHAP!!

GOP Presidential hopeful, Ben Carson, makes the statement, "How I feel and what I think isn’t just my opinion. God in his Word says very clearly that he considers homosexual acts to be an ‘abomination.’" ZING!!

“Seeing that it is better that offenders should die rather than that all of us should be killed by God’s just wrath against us for the folly of tolerating-wickedness in our midst, the People of California wisely command, in the fear of God, that any person who willingly touches another person of the same gender for purposes of sexual gratification be put to death by bullets to the head or by any other convenient method ...” was in a ballot initiative submitted in March by California lawyer Matt McLaughlin. POW!! BANG!! ZONK!!

Earlier this week, US Cardinal Raymond Burke stated, ‘If homosexual relationships are intrinsically disordered, which indeed they are … then what would it mean to grandchildren to have present at a family gathering a family member who is living [in] a disordered relationship with another person? "If it were another kind of relationship – something that was profoundly disordered and harmful – we wouldn’t expose our children to that relationship, to the direct experience of it.’ And neither should we do it in the context of a family member who not only suffers from same-sex attraction, but who has chosen to live out that attraction, to act upon it, committing acts which are always and everywhere wrong, evil.’ KAPOW!! BIFF!! ZAP!!

And yesterday Bobby Jindal signed a newly refined law in Louisiana protecting businesses that refuse to serve same sex marriages. ZING!!

I need a hero!! No, strike that. I need a gay super villain who can live up to all the evil vile deeds that these so called God-fearing morons are accusing the GLBT community of. We are attacking Christians, even though many gays and lesbians also identify as Christian. We’ve been accused of making children gay, just by being in their presence, even though I don’t ever remember being around anyone gay until years after I had decided I was. Gays and Lesbians have been accused of causing floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes. We’ve had the proverbial finger pointed at us as the catalyst for World Trade Center bombings, the Boston Marathon bombing and now, even a tragic Amtrak train crash.

Isis and her pretty headband
So it's become obvious to me that we are very powerful!! We have superhuman abilities that allow us to make foreign extremists carry out horrendous acts of terror. We have fairy tale magic that turns straight children gay; though I can’t fathom why we don’t use this magic in Hollywood on, say, Joe Manganiello or Ryan Gosling instead.

Like Isis, no, not that one, the pretty one with the headband from Saturday morning cartoons back when we had Saturday morning cartoons, we hold power over Mother Nature and the winds and the sea! The religious right is afraid of us; they are worried that we will make them all disappear long before the rapture has the opportunity.

So I propose that we all become Gay Super Villains!! I want to be called Rapture. Yes, like the Christian end of times, but even more like an overly floral scented perfume by some aging movie star or like the feeling I get just before a guy engulfs the whole of my being with in mouth. Pick your own Gay Super Villain name but I call dibs on Rapture.

Then create a costume built for the Gods, one that RuPaul would gag on and would make Bob Mackie drop to his knees in defeat. Grab your glitterbombs and put them in that utility belt and don’t forget a dildo of death, cock ring of torture and a cat o' nine tails for those moments when you’re alone with your Gay Super Villain sidekick.

Now head on down to the steps of your Capital Building or to that soapbox in the city park or to the gilded doors of the local Catholic Church and wreak havoc! Proclaim your evil desires while stroking the bald pussy in your lap and poking your pinky finger into the corner of your mouth. Lesbians, don't get mixed up; this isn't that kind of a protest! 

Call out Carson and Huckabee and Bobby Jindal as your arch nemesis and warn them of the coming doom you are planning. Dare them to try and stop you. Have your henchmen spring on the crowd and spray them with glitter and announce that you have now turned them gay. Call down the powers of the wind and threaten to destroy the whole town with a tornado powerful enough to turn Miss Gulch into an evil witch. Laugh maniacally and run around with your cape billowing behind you! Yes, own it! Be the Gay Super Villain they already see us as and if that doesn't finally stop the attacks, then get me several cans of Arid Extra Dry!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Gay Vegans: A Few Tips to Political Folks

By Dan Hanley

So much is being written about this past election, as if one party had never controlled both the US House and US Senate, ever. We know this is not the case. As a progressive, I remember that, in not so distant time, both chambers and the presidency were controlled by Republicans and we got through it. Yes, it might have sucked and yes there were some bad things that happened, but we got through it.

After spending a lot of time helping candidates I support get elected, and hanging out at election parties, I was reminded that I have always wanted to write a note to those in politics in regards to my thoughts on what they could do better. This goes to folks in all political parties.

Here you go:

When in public, be kind. Don't be arrogant. This goes for your staff too. Nothing is worse than running into arrogance-filled staff members at events. Anyone representing you or your campaign should be rocking it for you in public.

If you were part of something good, talk about it. Even if it means talking positive about someone who is not popular. For example, the economy seems much better off than it was two or four years ago. Certainly better than six years, no matter who is talking about it. Sure someone who hates the President will tell you, when talking about better unemployment numbers, that this number doesn't include folks who stopped looking for employment, but they never have. Never. So it is still apples to apples.

If you like something, admit it. Don't bs us. I firmly believe that folks will respect someone who sticks to their beliefs, even if those folks don't agree with those beliefs.

Thank people. Yes, you won. It was close. Thank those who took their personal time and decided to do what they could to help get you elected or re-elected rather than spend time with their family, go for a run, or volunteer for a non-profit.

Show up. Nothing sucks more than to see ads with you being attacked for not being present at work. This doesn't fly for most of us, nor should it for you. If you have missed a bunch of work, in any capacity, tell us why.

If you lost an election, don't stop. If it is a four year term that is a bit tougher, but for two year terms run again. And again. If you firmly believe that you are a better candidate and would support the citizens better than the other person, keep going. Rock it in between elections and run again.

Give a shit. This is crucial, although many folks get elected who don't. Many folks in politics want to be mayor or governor or president. If that is the only reason you are running for state house or some other position, please don't tell me that. I want to believe that you actually care about the people who you are asking to vote for you. I get that folks aspire to a higher office, and I also want someone who represents me on any level to give a shit.

And my regular readers would be shocked if I didn't include this part. If you want to make change but do not want to get into politics, the least you can do is vote.

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Gay Vegans: Don't Forget What the Bigots Did

By Dan Hanley

What an amazing week!

Watching gay couples get married in Oklahoma, Virginia, West Virginia, Nevada. Legal marriage is now in a majority of the states. I wept as I watched couples who had been together 20, 30 years finally being allowed to legally marry.

Of course many are not happy. As I write, the state of South Carolina is doing everything they can to not allow gays to marry.

And as hundreds of couples marry around the country, I ask each of you to not forget.

Please don't forget the bigots and the religious extremists. Please don't forget those who used every waking breathe to keep marriage from us.

Please don't forget those who had the power to simply say yes, or vote yes, and instead said or voted no.

Please don't forget those who demonized us, and continue to demonize us.

Which brings me to my point.

Many of these same people are running for election or re-election across the country. Some of them want people to forget their horrible words and votes against gays and lesbians. Some of them think they will get more votes by demonizing us.

Don't let them do it. Don't let them win.

We have the power. It's called the vote.

Vote. Make sure they know we haven't forgotten. Make sure we speak with a loud voice.

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Monday, July 21, 2014

The Gay Vegans: Still Don't Want to Vote?

By Dan Hanley

I was reading a friend's Facebook comments recently about a man running for the state house in Michigan who removed her comments and blocked her from his Facebook page after she posted that she would not be voting for him. My first thought was "typical", and then I started really thinking about it.

This guy, who I also would not vote for if I still lived back in my hometown, could easily win. He may not support women, he may not support public schools, he may not support equality for gays and lesbians. He could support corporate and agricultural welfare, he could support allowing anyone to buy any type of gun from anyone else and he could support a myriad of other things that I might disagree with.

And he is just like someone running for political office where you live.

He is almost assured a victory.

Unless you vote.

There is a huge us vs. them battle going on these days. This is perpetuated by those in political power and those who want political power. And it's not just one party, it's members of both parties.

In many activist communities I have met people who do not vote. Amazing activists, incredibly passionate people. Yet they don't vote.

In November, there will be elections all over the country. New congressmen will be elected or re-elected, members of state houses will be elected, new school board members, etc. Whoever wins will represent you at the US Capitol, your state capitol and your county school board.

I write a lot about being a voice for the voiceless. This is another one of those opportunities. Check out the candidates in your area. Find out where they stand on issues important to you. Call them or email them. Even if you are in a supposed district where the winner is already known.

We have the power.


Vote for the animals. Vote for equal rights. Vote to support equality for women. Vote to support nine year olds who are refugees on our border. Vote to speak out loudly for the voiceless.

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The Gay Vegans: Another legislative session in Colorado - make your voice heard!

By Dan Hanley

In Colorado, our state legislature is not year-long. They begin in January and go through early May.

I believe that it is vital for any activist to be politically active. When politicians, especially on the state level, know who you are and are familiar with your concerns, change has a better chance of happening.

This session won't be much different than past sessions. A lot of hot air against the other side. Egos run rampant. Meanwhile the people of Colorado many times get left behind. I must say that I have met many of those who represent Coloradans at the state capitol and they truly care about the people they represent. I don't know what happens through the process of creating legislation that they tend to forget this.

One of the bills I have been watching is a bill that would allow gay and lesbian couple who have married in states where there is marriage equality to file state taxes as a couple. This passed the state senate along party (Democrat/Republican) lines 18 - 16. One Republican must have not voted as they have 17 folks in the state senate. The bill goes on to the state house where the Democrats have a large majority. Most likely Governor Hickenlooper will sign it.

This bill makes a lot of sense, especially because gay and lesbian couples who are legally married can now file federal taxes as a couple. The religious extremists say this would affect traditional marriage. I imagine many things affect traditional marriage. In this case, the couples are already married. Legally. I think most of the no votes boil down to the fact that many of them just do not like gay folk and the rest feel like they have to vote the party line.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Gay Vegans: A Shut Down Government

By Dan Hanley

After a month of writing for Vegan Mofo, I am super excited to be writing about other things now, like the government shutdown.

What does the government shutdown have to do with The Gay Vegans?


One of the issues I write about is asking people to get involved more politically. Get to know who represents you at your state capitol and find out who represents you in Washington, D.C. For those of us always trying to be a voice for the voiceless, I believe it's important to show up in politics.

Some disagree and that's cool.

So now we have another mess in DC. A lot of name calling and pointing fingers, it's like a drag show gone bad.

I believe that there are many in Congress who just don't give a shit about anyone. They want what they want and that is all they are interested in. And they have the power to shut down the government.

My entire life I have always been totally open to sitting down with people that I disagree with. It's not difficult. I can shut up long enough to listen to another's point of view and they can do the same. We will probably continue to disagree, yet have a good chance of agreeing to some things. In the end, I believe that we all have much more in common than not.

Those in Congress need to hear from us. Not just now; all of the time.

If you are an activist, a voice for the voiceless, an advocate for making the world a better place for all living beings I urge you to consider letting those who represent you at all levels know who you are and what you support and don't support.

We all deserve better than what we are getting. We can complain about what folks are not doing or we can take action.

If you need help finding out who represents you, check out this website:

Meanwhile, there are people who are suffering because of this shutdown. It's a good time for us to reach out to friends and family who might be bale to use some help, including a hug.

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Gay Vegans: Election is over - Time to get involved

By Dan Hanley

Several years ago Mike and I were renting a home for a year while we looked for our perfect place. We met a couple who was going to backpack the world for a year and it all worked out for us to live in their home. We loved it.

There was one problem: the neighbors.

They kept their dog chained outside. All the time.

We tried to be a voice for the dog, no luck. So I called our city councilwoman to see if there was a law being broken. The dog had shelter and access to food and water and that was all that the law required.

Eventually the neighbor took the dog off the chain. And the city councilwoman began a process of seeing if the city law was enough to care for dogs who are kept outside. 

Those of us who are voices for the voiceless, who fight for animal rights, human rights and equality, have an opportunity to be an even stronger voice. It's called politics.

This isn't the first time you have read about this on our blog. I firmly believe in being politically active. Not just voting, but communicating with and getting to know those who represent you on city council, in the state house, the state senate and even the US Congress. Better yet, I love getting to the point when an elected official knows me and what I stand for and what is important to me.

Don't know who represents you on these levels? I have you covered. Just go to this website and type in your zip code:

Most of the laws that affect us in our daily lives are state laws. The opportunity to help animals, the homeless, battered women or to support equality can all start at your state capitol. Love organic vegetables? Let your state representative know? Abhor animal cruelty? Email your state senator. Want more bike lanes or less access to assault weapons? Call them both!

It really can make a difference.

In Colorado our 2013 session begins next week. Our sessions run from January to May. This week I emailed my state representative reminding him how Mike and feel about certain issues that might be voted on this session, and additional reminders about other issues important to us just in case they are brought up.

The time is now to get involved.

Thank you for reading!

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Op/Ed: These Republicans Will Never Rule Again -- What the American Election Has to Teach the World

By Marten Weber

There are times when it hurts not to be American. On election night, I regretted nothing more than not holding an American passport. I would have voted. I wanted desperately to be a part of this resounding victory of reason over bigotry. 

In my books, I often make fun of American attitudes and stereotypes. That does not mean I do not care deeply for this country. American elections fascinate me. Nowhere on earth do so many people from such diverse backgrounds decide on a common future.

So what does Obama's re-election have to teach the world? One thing: the culture wars are over. These elections were not about abortion, guns, gays, or god -- they were about demographics. If you sift through the data on the various websites, a clear picture emerges: Mitt Romney stands for older, white men. He stands for conservative tribal attitude and antiquated bible-babble.

Obama got the vote of young people from all walks of life -- from people who want consensus over partisan bickering, equality instead of tribalism, reason rather than fairy tales, and economic fairness instead of damaging capitalism.

These Republicans were stupid enough to alienate every non-white, non-male, non-gun-toting-bible-waving constituency in America. They insulted women, ignored gay people, offended Latinos, disregarded Asians, and made a mockery of the American dream of inclusiveness and equal opportunity. So they lost, and they lost big time!

Obama did not win by a small margin. It was a resounding victory. Romney lost in every swing state on the map. And that says a lot about the future. Swing states predict where things are headed, and the message is clear: these Republicans will never rule again.

Conservative attitudes are passe. You can't win an election anymore in the most diverse country in the world, by ignoring minorities or patronizing women. You cannot win by conflating church and state. You cannot win an election any longer by disparaging gays and lesbians. You cannot win an election by pandering to outmoded principles of winner-takes-all. The white angry men of brutal capitalism are doomed. These Republicans are doomed.

Notice I say 'these.' The Republican party may well regain its footing. It may rise from the ashes with new policies and new slogans. It may win future elections. But it cannot do so without embracing diversity and equality, sooner or later.

The message for the rest of the world is clear: we are all headed for a world of inclusion, a world of tolerance and respect for other lifestyles. We are also headed for a world where values other than money and church dictate our daily lives. We are headed for a bright future.

I cried when Ohio turned blue. I wept when Obama gave his speech. I hope with all my heart that he has what it takes to push through the necessary reforms and bring about true change in America. Without the worry of re-election, he now has a free hand. Let change come for real, and let it be a beacon of liberty and tolerance in the world! Thank you, America!

Marten Weber is an author who has just released his sixth novel BODENSEE.  This post originally appeared at and is reprinted with permission.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Gay Vegans: A New Day - The 2012 Election

By Dan Hanley

Mike and I were surrounded by friends, enjoying vegan tamales (with vegan mole!) and sangria at our election night party when we heard that Ohio had gone for the President and news organizations began calling the Presidential election for President Obama.

I was ecstatic.

And I still am. As we continued to watch the results that night and then also the next morning, it became clear that, based on our opinions, election night had produced some wonderful results:

President Barack Obama was re-elected. This was huge for us based on equality, women's rights, veteran care and the economy. It is great having a President who supports our marriage.

The Colorado State House became Democratic again. As of right now it is 38 to 27. What this means is that we are likely to have our first openly gay Speaker of the House in Colorado and any civil unions bill presented is sure to pass. The Republican house leadership has stopped it for a couple of years, even though there were enough votes for it to pass if it got to a floor vote.

Tammy Baldwin became the first openly gay member of the US Senate, representing Wisconsin. I take issue with her past support of the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act and how that has affected animal activists, yet I am still happy for her. 

Gay marriage passed in Maine and Maryland. This means these states actually voted on whether to legalize gay marriage, and they both said YES! In Washington state, voters approved marriage equality as well, supporting a law signed by the governor earlier in the year.

An anti-gay amendment to the Minnesota constitution was defeated.

Our US Congressman, Ed Perlmutter, and our State Rep, Max Tyler, were both re-elected.

Amendment 64, which legalizes the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana in Colorado, passed. Even though political "leaders" were all against this, it passed. I am happy just for that, but also because I believe marijuana should be legalized (and the sale of it taxed). Too many people around the world die because of drugs being illegal.

In our county, Jefferson County, voters approved 3A and 3B which will raise tax revenues for our public schools.

Tea party scum in Indiana and Missouri were soundly defeated. I'm sure elsewhere too. It was a good night for religious extremists in this country.

Lots and lots of people voted. They waited forever in line to vote. They disputed being told they could not vote. They made sure their voice was going to be heard.

What was your favorite result of the election?

Before I close, I want to say thank you to our blog readers for putting up with our blogs written about the election. This election was just too important not to write about, or not to share who we supported and why. I'm sure it wasn't fun for all of our readers, but thanks for sticking with us and especially thanks for supporting us.

And thank you for reading this post!

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Gay vegans: Pro-Animal But Anti-Gay?

By Dan Hanley

It was many years ago but I remember it like it was yesterday. Rick Santorum, then a US Senator, was being honored by a national animal group. I was disgusted. It was like gay people were being kicked to the curb by this group. Betrayal in it's deepest, harshest forms.

I understand that animal groups are animal groups. They have a mission, one that does not include equality or even support for gay people. With so much animal cruelty going on in this country I totally understand that animal groups have to focus on their mission.

And I am one who works daily to be a voice for all of the voiceless. My mission includes speaking out against cruelty, hate, bigotry and intolerance in any form.

So what are animal advocates to think when a national group writes an op-ed in a national magazine, Veg News, in support of a candidate. Like everything we have to do these days, investigate.

If you are an animal rights activist and you support equality for gay people, I urge you to look into any candidate that is supported by a national animal group. I personally could never vote for or support a candidate for Congress who does not believe in equality regardless of what they may support or not support in Congress regarding animals.

A wonderful example is a positive note about Representative Mike Fitzpatrick from Pennsylvania. We know from the Veg News article that he is the lead sponsor of a bill to ban the trade of primates as exotic pets. We do not know how his Democratic opponent feels about this and, being solely focused on animals, we do not know by this account that he does not support marriage equality or that he received just a 5% grade from the Human Rights Campaign, a national gay rights group.

There is a similar note about Representative Michael Grimm, who was highlighted in the same Veg News article. He is against marriage equality. He has received a 0% grade from the Human Rights Campaign.

Of course HRC grades solely on how an elected official votes for gay/lesbian/equality issues. I get that. And i hope you get that a 0% or 5% grade means that they basically do not like gay people.

This blog post is just vegan food for thought. As I get to know many of our readers and supporters I know that they fight for animals and also believe in equality. Pro animal does not mean pro equality.

I want both in a candidate.

Please do not support anti-equality candidates, no matter what the national animal groups say.

Thank you so much for reading this!

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Election Day a big test for marriage equality

Marriage equality supporters and opponents have a lot riding on Election Day, as voters in four states will decide marriage-related ballot questions and the national electorate will choose between presidential candidates with polar opposite positions on the issue, according to this analysis

 ”It’s about what kind of country we are,” said Lee Swislow of the group Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders. Marriage equality decisions on Election Day could influence Supreme Court action on the issue.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Gay Vegans: Why We Ask You to Vote for President Obama

By Dan Hanley

Mike and I voted today!

I am starting this post with a line from within the post. It's towards the end and I want to make sure that anyone who even browses this post will read it:

The simple reality is that for gay people and women (especially poor women), life will be much different under a Romney/Ryan administration than under President Obama.

I clearly remember the day Mike and I went to vote in 2008. I was ecstatic to vote for Barack Obama. Election night was a thrill.

There were a lot of promises. I have heard them before. People have been talking about ending the ban on gays in the military for a long time. That's just one example.

I believed that he would close Guantanamo. I believed he would work for equality. I believed that the economy would get better.

It all hasn't come to be. And I am once again ecstatic to go vote for President Obama. Because we have a ton of readers in several of the "toss up" states, I wanted to write a blog asking you to vote for President Obama.

There is a huge difference between the President and Mitt Romney, more so with social issues. There are many reasons why I am voting for President Obama and not Mitt Romney:

I believe the economy will get better with the President's continued leadership.

I believe we will not get involved with wars we cannot afford with President Obama.

I believe that President Obama honestly wants to make our education system stronger, that he believes in strong, vibrant, innovative public schools.

President Obama believes in equality and will not attack my family or my marriage.

I believe President Obama (and his wife!) truly are concerned for veterans and the care they receive after military service.

President Obama ended the ban on gays and lesbians in the military.

A vote for President Obama is a vote for tolerance (in many forms). A vote for Mitt Romney is a vote for intolerance (in many forms).

I believe Mitt Romney is anti gay. His desire is to attack to my marriage by making it unconstitutional.

I believe Mitt Romney has no regard for women in regards to their own health and choices.

I believe Mitt Romney would cave to the religious zealots in our country.

Mitt Romney has said (when he was asked in Colorado) that he does not believe in civil unions for gays and lesbians if they (the civil unions) are "too close" to marriage.

Most of Mitt Romney's charitable giving was to the Mormon Church. The same church that funded Proposition 8 in California.

I believe that Mitt Romney seriously believes in what he said about the 47%.

I understand that many people support Mitt Romney for a variety of reasons and I also understand that many will disagree with my reasons. The simple reality is that for gay people and women (especially poor women), life will be much different under a Romney/Ryan administration than under President Obama. Not just different, Progress made towards equality will falter and the level of freedom for gay and lesbian people and for women will decrease.

I have heard from many people we know who want to vote for Romney, a third-party candidate or who will not vote at all. Please reconsider, and vote for President Obama. Your vote could mean the difference between an administration that fully supports equality and one that fully believes that gay people should not have equal rights (and that's putting it nicely).

Meanwhile, as we count down to election day, if we disagree let's disagree with love and kindness. There is a huge amount of vitriol out there and I know that me, Mike and our readers do not need to be a part of that.

Thank you for reading!

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

New survey from MileHighGayGuy shows Denver's gay community plans to vote for Obama

A new survey of readers and Denver's gay community provides information on the upcoming Presidential election, political affiliations, and the issues that are most important to gay voters in swing-state Colorado.

According to the survey, the vast majority of Denver's gay male voters identify as Democrat (76 percent) with only five percent identifying as Republican. Another fifteen percent of respondents identified as independent, unaffiliated, or as members of a third party such as Libertarian, Green, or Socialist.

As for the upcoming Presidential election, approximately 80 percent of respondents say they are voting for Obama. Five percent of respondents say they will be voting for Mitt Romney with fifteen percent either "undecided" or planning to vote for other candidates including Gary Johnson and Roseanne Barr.

Stay tuned for more survey results and coverage from Denver's gay community as the 2012 Presidential Election campaigns continue.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Gay Vegans: Vote. Seriously.

By Dan Hanley

I have heard and read it all. By "it", I am mean all of the statements and arguments as to why people should not vote.

I get it.

Some think it doesn't matter who wins an election, that all candidates are the same. I suppose part of this could be true, yet I firmly believe that this statement is great for people who have the privilege of being heterosexual. Or for someone who believes the statement of equal opinions/actions from candidates doesn't include opinions around equality or any type of positive notion around gays and lesbians.

Believe me, there is a difference.


From your local city council to the President, candidates have vastly different views on equal rights for gays and lesbians. I'm not asking candidates to carry a gay flag at a gay pride parade. I'm talking about candidates who don't even support civil unions. Or go out of their way to disparage or demonize gay people.

Yes, there are many other issues that I am concerned about, yet it begins with whether or not a candidate believes Mike and I should have equality on some level.


Who represents you in your state house? In your state senate?

Who is your voice in the US House of Representatives?

What local issues are being decided on? How about your local Board of Education?

Check it out. There is a lot of information out there.

And remember us. Remember The Gay Vegans when you vote.

Early voting starts soon in many places. In some places you need to be registered 30 days before an election so that cutoff date is coming up. Check with your county clerk for more information.

Thanks for reading.

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Gay Vegans: A Political Storm

By Dan Hanley

Mike and I live in a swing state, Colorado. If you also live in a swing state, you most likely can relate to what we have to deal with regarding TV and radio commercials filled with attacks and in most cases untruths.

In Colorado, we also have an important election season around our state legislature. Equality for gays and lesbians in our state is very important, and we know that under house Republican leadership we will never see civil unions in Colorado. The Republicans have a one seat majority in our state house and we are hoping (and working towards) waking up on November 5th to a state house that has a Democratic majority.

In our county, we have 3A and 3b, both efforts to support our public schools by a very small property tax increase. This is a no brainer for us. We don't have children but we completely realize the importance of education and the importance of strong, successful public schools. We would give a lot more than what 3A and 3B will take from us if they pass.

Regardless of what is important to YOU, I urge you to get involved in this election process. There are huge differences between candidates, differences that mean something to many people.  Make sure your voter registration is up to date. If you have moved, make sure you are registered in your new home. Urge your friends and family to do the same. In Colorado, you can do this online. And remember that in most states, including Colorado, you must register to vote 30 days prior to an election.

I also invite all of you to do as Mike and I are doing and drop some cash to a candidate you support. Or have a fundraiser in your home for them.

There is a lot on the line this election. And yes, I have read all the opinions of others who believe there is no difference in the Presidential candidates, that the system is rigged and their a vote doesn't make a difference. I kindly disagree.

Many of our readers are, like us, activists. Whether animal rights, human rights, marriage equality, education, the environment or one of dozens of other causes. Make your voice heard. Get involved in the process.

Thank you so much for reading. My email address is If you need help finding out about candidates in state and federal races in your area, click here:

This post originally appeared on Dan Hanley's website The Gay Vegans. Republished with permission.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Grindr to start sending political messages

Grindr, a smartphone application for gay men seeking other gay men (as if you didn't know), is launching an effort to "mobilize gay men as a political bloc," according to a blog post on Grindr's website. The effort involves sending geotargeted political messages to the app's 1.5 million users.

What do you think? Should they be commended for being politically aware or should they stick to what they do best - facilitating hook ups?

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

2012 Presidential Election: Time for gay Colorado to ante up

By Todd Craig

I love card games, especially poker.  I also love poker because it makes for a good metaphor, especially when it comes to politics.

Since the gay rights movement began, we’ve been fighting an uphill battle for acceptance, understanding, and compassion.  We’ve also been fighting a mostly losing battle when it comes to politics.  Until recently, we haven’t been able to command a clear majority when it comes to gay-themed political issues.

In other words, we’ve been dealt relatively weak political poker hands to play, lacking power, face cards, and opportunities to bet big and win big.

Here in Colorado, we’ve done the smart thing.  Gay rights groups have aligned our political efforts strongly with state Democrats to target smaller races at the state and local levels to give a strong fundraising edge to gay-friendly politicians who have in turn been able to advocate and expand our rights from the ground up.

Considering that the poker hands they’ve been dealt haven’t been slam-dunks by any stretch of the imagination, they’ve had extraordinary results.  They’ve known that in politics, much like poker, if you don’t have a winning hand, your best option is to whittle away here and there and make enough progress to keep your momentum alive.

But this election coming up in November is something far different.

In case you missed the last five million Romney or Obama ads on every channel of your television, let me take a minute to tell you that there’s an election coming up in a few months, and Colorado’s purple mountains are a key battle ground that could swing the election one way or the other.

This is a big election, especially for us gays.  It represents our first big hand.

For the first time in the history of our nation we have an incumbent president and vice president who are ready, willing, and able to do something for marriage equality and expanding equal rights for gay Americans at the federal level.  The Obama, Biden, and Clinton triumvirate has done more for us than any other administration in history.  And more importantly, for the first time in history we have a president, vice-president, and secretary of state who all advocate for marriage equality.

There is no overestimating how big that reality is.

On the other hand, there’s Mitt Romney, who’s own website says that “… he will also champion a Federal Marriage Amendment to the Constitution defining marriage as between one man and one woman.”

That’s right.  The guy wants to rewrite the Constitution to legalize discrimination against us.

Romney’s campaign is currently going all in, outraising Obama and purchasing a blitzkrieg of ads with the support of a Republican fundraising machine that’s all but declared war on the current President and his gay-friendly positions for the last four years.

So what are we doing here in Colorado?

Well the news of the month features a group called Fight Back Colorado, a group dedicated to opposing state legislators who blocked the civil unions bill last spring.

Kinda seems like small potatoes, doesn’t it?

I’ll be honest, I’m on record as being pretty lukewarm about the whole civil unions thing.  I appreciate progress, but I appreciate total equality a heckuva lot more, and civil unions are just too separate-but-equal for my liking.

And it seems to me that in the poker game of politics, we gays here in Colorado finally have a chance to make a difference, a huge difference in the biggest poker game of all, the presidential election.

We’ve finally got the face cards and the poker hand we need to win big on a national scale.

So let’s ante up.  Let’s quit playing these little games and go for the big win.  Let’s tell our political groups to aim higher and to think bigger.

Let’s think about what we can do to turn this state in Obama’s favor.

Let’s dedicate all of our money, our talent, our social networking, our media savvy, and our political muscle to try to win this swing state for Obama.  Let’s get him a second term.  Let’s allow him to nominate Supreme Court justices who are more than conservative puppets.  Let’s make the most powerful American and the leader of the free world our most powerful ally for another four years.  Let's give our first president to support marriage equality the chance to make it happen.

We don’t have to think small anymore.  This is our moon shot.  We have three queens who deserve a pair of fours.

So I’m calling on our state political groups to think big for the next four months.  I want to see One Colorado’s facebook page with its 5000-plus likes filled with reasons to vote Obama.  I want Fight Back Colorado to fight back against the Republican machine that’s playing for keeps at the national level.   This election is about going big or going home, so let’s do just that.

These groups will do a helluva lot more for Colorado’s gay community if they go all in on the national election as opposed to harboring grudges towards state legislators who beat them in last spring’s civil union debacle.  Even if they win their current focus on snagging those precious two or three seats to get civil unions passed, the whole kit and kaboodle could be lost if Romney wins and has the opportunity to write his homo hate into our nation’s Constitution.

Politics, like poker, is all about recognizing the moment.  Here’s hoping our LGBT political players make the most of our best hand ever.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Could this Libertarian presidential candidate draw votes from Obama?

Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson, who plans to run for president as a Libertarian Party candidate, says he could draw LGBT votes from President Barack Obama because he supports marriage rights for same-sex couples, which Obama still officially opposes.

Ron Paul campaign has links to anti-gay activists

The presidential campaign of Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, has apparently removed from its website a press release trumpeting the endorsement of the Rev. Phillip G. Kayser, a Nebraska pastor who supports the death penalty for homosexuals. 

Mike Heath, the Iowa state director for the Paul campaign, once chaired an anti-gay organization deemed a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Gingrich’s sister supports Obama

Candace Gingrich-Jones (above, from a recent appearance on the Rachel Maddow Show), the openly gay half-sister of former House Speaker and leading GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich, says she will back President Barack Obama’s re-election bid. Gingrich-Jones, a director at the Human Rights Campaign, said that she and her half-brother are "mutually respectful" but hold different views on gay rights issues.