To Our ‘Gay’ President
Dear President Obama,
I have to admit you are full of surprises. As I am sure you are aware from your daily perusal of our humble blog, I am critically supportive of you. I worked for your election, cried when Jon Stewart called the election for Obama as part of The Daily Show and Colbert Report’s special live coverage of Indecision 2008, keeping the live show going a few more minutes in order to announce your/our victory, and praised your Obamacare, even if it was far from perfect.
I didn’t expect you to be so deadly cool and take out bin Laden like you did, when many hawks would be squawking at their roosts deciding if to or not.
Still, you will excuse me if I don’t jump up and down on your decision to support gay marriage, or the tribulations that have followed. You see, Mr. President, you simply did the right thing. That’s it.
I appreciate you having the guts to do it in an election year, but the President should do the right thing. You are the President of everyone – the blacks, the Jews, the Hispanics, the whites, the card-carrying NRA members, the religious and the secular. And you are the President of the gay community. You did the right thing.
So to thank you, here is a song that was brought out when it was difficult to come out as gay in Britain, sung by a singer who is not (I think) gay. But Billy Bragg wanted to be a representative of all progressive people and so he challenged us all with this song.
By the way Mr. President, I chose this version because it features the late Kristy MacColl who tragically died 12 years ago.
Thank you for reading this, sir. Always a pleasure. Here’s to another four years.
Alon Shalev is the author of The Accidental Activist and A Gardener’s Tale. He is the Executive Director of the San Francisco Hillel Foundation, a non-profit that provides spiritual and social justice opportunities to Jewish students in the Bay Area. More on Alon Shalev at http://www.alonshalev.com/ and on Twitter (@alonshalevsf).