I always understood the general rule to be: one in 10 people is gay. This ratio, which apparently has been oft-repeated to a point where it still remains lore 10 years after I first heard it (the gay population apparently has not adjusted for inflation), is a nice shorthand for: it could be you. (One of my favoritest people of all time, Jane Lynch, interviewed with Terry Gross on NPR yesterday, and this was her reaction to her 20something realization that she is gay: “Oh man, really?”). The threat that you could be the one left holding the rainbow flag is the greatest fear tactic of all: it results in the simultaneous internalization and externalization of one’s homophobia. This is, in part, what moves certain people to go to the polls, draw the little iron curtain, and, in the comfortably private, if not stuffy, polling station, mark a mark that will seal the fate for all those ones in tens, if not themselves. And they are, of course, protecting the children. Remember the children!
Yesterday – one year after Prop. 8 passed here, and one day after a similar referendum passed in Maine – Equality Network organized “Death to Discrimination,” a march-and-mourn protest and rally in Silver Lake. The LA Times estimates that 60 people were present when the march started, but grew to a bit over 200 as the march marched up Vermont and down Sunset towards its destination in front of Le BarCito at Sunset Junction (overall, a decent turnout, but a far, far cry from the 700+ people who RSVP’d for the event on Facebook — like certain people I’m sometimes frustrated to know, you’ll always have flakes). As the speakers began their spiels to the converted, the number of people dwindled – slowly at first, then “exponentially faster,” as Narinda Heng, my fellow mourner, observed. Tip to future organizers: a rally and protest aren’t the Oscars. Keep the speeches short well before the orchestra starts to hum its boredom.
A handful of pictures from the post-march rally, after the jump.