I’m a man, a white man (not that it matters) with Cherokee indigenous blood running through my veins; not a lot, but “enough.” I’m also gay, meaning I’m a man who, if I’m going to date and sleep with someone— that someone will be another man. I’m a cancer survivor and I’ve lived with HIV for (knowingly) 15+ years; I’ve seen my weight fluctuate in both directions (presently headed in the right direction as I work to get back down to my goal weight). I’m “registered as” a Democrat but I’m one of the most conservative gay men living in our community today — and I’m not ashamed to be so. (I’ve every intention of voting for Donald Trump; not because I believe he’s perfect but because I think he’s the only one running that I can trust to get us back on track to realizing the potential that our country does have. Hilary Clinton is simply a crook, for sale to the highest bidder. Bernie Sanders, bless his heart, is a wonderful man but he’s a socialist; that isn’t what our country is all about. Better you people wake the hell up and realize that now, BEFORE we end up with some of the highest tax rates in the civilized world.) I believe in a hard day’s work for a hard day’s dollar; I don’t believe in handouts but I’m not averse to giving another person a hand UP. I believe every person, be they man, woman, black or white, red or brown, able-bodied or physically challenged should have equal access to the same OPPORTUNITIES that are offered to their peers, BUT that only means they’ve the opportunity to “PUT IN THE EFFORT TO ACHIEVE WHAT THEIR PEERS HAVE, THROUGH THEIR OWN HARD WORK.” I do NOT believe in giving a person a reward “just for showing up.” If he or she excels at what they do then yes, he or she should be rewarded in commensurate fashion — but to be given a trophy just for walking in the door? No! Excellence deserves to be rewarded; mediocrity does not. I’m proud of the principles upon which this country (United States of Amerce) was founded; I’m not entirely happy with some legs of the journey our country has traversed …. But we are learning, ever improving (or should be) and can still make this country as great as the dreams of which our forefathers did have in mind when the fight for our independence was made. The Republican (GOP) party is not perfect but I’m quickly realizing that I’ve more in common with the Republicans than I do with my own party members. Democrats LOVE to play the “victim” card; the Democratic party is ALL ABOUT building walls (which is hilarious when you stop and consider how much they’ve railed against Trump’s comment about building a wall between Mexico and the U.S.) Yes, there’s no group of persons existing today that gets more of a “money shot” out of creating divisions between one group of person and another —- than the Democrats. Victimhood is their modus operandi; trying to bully those with whom they disagree IS a common tool in their little bag of wares. [Most] Democrats I have known spend more time being ashamed of our country and its past than they seem capable of being proud of all of our [collective] accomplishments. They make excuses and offer apologies for shit they/we had NO PART in rather than simply saying, “Well, that’s something we need to work on” (and getting to work). Honestly, I believe patriotism is an alien concept to your average Democrat who buys into the liberal narrative that pervades far too much of our lives here in the USA today. Patriotism is NOT unfamiliar to [most] Republicans; if anything, most members of the GOP are so overly patriotic that they’re incapable of even “considering” an apology for the irresponsible and unfair actions of some of our forefathers. Members of the GOP have been charged with prejudice and racism in the past; closed-mindedness is a trait that prevails within BOTH parties but is more often than not assigned to the conservative party. It’s true that, seemingly, liberals and Democrats were quicker to recognize how unfair it is to judge a man or woman because of his or her sexual orientation. (Conservatives are more likely to butt heads on this issue based on their upbringing and indoctrinations from the pulpit/church. But I’m proud to acknowledge those conservatives who HAVE “grown” and do, today, accept me for the man that I always have been. In point of fact, I wish that I could say the same for my LGBT peers (who have YET TO ACKNOWLEDGE that we’ve MANY allies within the conservative party who, in spite of their religious beliefs, have accepted us for the people that we are). It’s true that there are still assholes within the Republican party who cannot see past the biases they have developed from years of faith-based indoctrination and redneck attitudes in the home but hey, that’s life. You have people who’ve grown over the years and you have those who walk in place, never evolving and ever-judging —- and they exist on BOTH SIDES, in BOTH parties, the Republicans and the Democrats alike! But personally speaking, I’ve had better luck holding dialogues with Republicans than I’ve had with those in my own party, in my own [LGBT] community. That’s saying a hell of a lot for a group of people who would have you “believe” they are better than most. (They’re not; if anything, liberals are MORE judgmental and more divisive than any other group of people walking the earth today. That HAS been my experience; especially in recent years as we have made some headway on the front of equal rights. (A fight, I might add, that I’ve fought for the better part of thirty-two years… only to now discover that “some” within our community REALLY DO want “special” rights (as opposed to equal rights). What a shameful fucking turn of events THAT realization has been!
Having made that last comment I want to close with this. I do NOT believe in “compensation” for past wrongs; I believe in making course corrections and addressing the inequalities that may exist at any given point in time. I do NOT believe in affirmative action, REGARDLESS of the situation. If you cannot excel [presently] then you do not deserve to be rewarded. Keep working at it if you want the prize but don’t expect me to lower the bar to compensate for whatever injustices may have existed in the past. (That kind of shit simply means that SOMEBODY ELSE is now going to be discriminated against or treated unfairly —- and two wrongs do not a right make, folks.)
Get off your ass and work for what you want to get out of life. That’s my mantra; it should be yours.
In truth and honoring all human-kind (worth honoring)…Michael