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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Approaching 10,000,000 Views

Posted by Dan Savage on Wed, Sep 18, 2013 at 1:59 PM

From the epilogue of American Savage:

I was in Kerry Park on a clear winter day, years ago, in the pre-Instagram era, when a limo pulled up. A wedding party spilled out. The photographer positioned the bride and groom on the grass near the edge of the park. The newlyweds posed for a wedding portrait with the city and Space Needle behind them. As the bride and groom stood holding each other, with the photographer snapping away, the small crowd in the park began to applaud. Everyone was beaming. People shouted, "Congratulations!" as the newlywed couple climbed back into their limo.

I was standing on the sidewalk, at the edge of the park, near a couple of guys I knew.

Well, I didn't know them. I didn't know them personally. (And, no, I didn't know them biblically.) But I knew them and they knew me. They were a couple of late-middle aged gay men, a decade or two older than I was at the time, out for a walk with their dogs. I caught the eye of one of the guys while we were clapping for the straight couple getting in the limo. He shook his head, smiled wanly, and shrugged.

"We're always happy for them," he said. "Would it kill them to be happy for us?"

I like to think that NOM head Brian Brown—who features prominently in American Savage—is one of the nearly ten million people who've watched Spencer propose to Dustin in the aisles of a Home Depot in Salt Lake City. Because Brian needs to see what so many lesbian and gay Americans are seeing: our straight friends, families, neighbors, and friends—even straight strangers shopping at Home Depot in freakin' Utah—are on our side.

They are happy for us.

Brian is still out there trying to frame the struggle for marriage equality—which is not yet won (37 states to go)—as a battle with gay people (and gay marriage) on one side and straight people (and straight marriage) on the other. But that's a lie. The battle is between people who are capable of loving their neighbors—gay or straight—and people who are incapable of loving their neighbors.

Congrats to Spencer and Dustin.

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