Monday, February 23, 2009

Gays at the Oscars

I'll be brief, but I wanted to highlight how excited and touched I was by the two wins for MILK last night at the Oscars. Dustin Lance Black (only 34 years old) won for Best Writing in an Original Screenplay and Sean Penn won Best Actor.

It's not often that we sit down together as a country, and hell, with people around the world watching, it's not often we sit down as a global community ... and discuss gay rights. In a forum with as much viewership and impact as the Oscars, these two wins meant an enormous amount to me. My heart swelled listening to these two speeches ... I got the chance to truly feel proud about who I am.

Many will say that this is just the first step, there's so far to go, or the impact of this will be lost because of this or that ... but I'm going to savor it.

Black's acceptance speech:

" ... When I was 13 years old, my beautiful mother and my father moved me from a conservative Mormon home in San Antonio, Texas to California, and I heard the story of Harvey Milk. And it gave me hope. It gave me the hope to live my life. It gave me the hope one day I could live my life openly as who I am and then maybe even I could even fall in love and one day get married.

I wanna, I wanna thank my mom, who has always loved me for who I am even when there was pressure not to. But most of all, if Harvey had not been taken from us 30 years ago, I think he'd want me to say to all of the gay and lesbian kids out there tonight who have been told that they are less than by their churches, by the government or by their families, that you are beautiful, wonderful creatures of value and that no matter what anyone tells you, God does love you and that very soon, I promise you, you will have equal rights federally, across this great nation of ours. Thank you. Thank you. And thank you, God, for giving us Harvey Milk."

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