Hordes of homos cames to Star Lounge last night for our party with former Alaskan Senator and current presidential candidate Mike Gravel.
Speaking to the enthusiastic group, Gravel reiterated his gay-friendly position on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Gravel lamented an American culture that forces gays in the closet. What’s more, he astutely pointed out that such people’s self-shame hurts the movement as a whole. At one point, the politico got so impassioned on the matter, he cried to the closeted queers: “Come out of the closet!”
(Check out our rocking photo gallery, after the jump.)
The former Alaskan Senator also wagged a finger at conservatives looking to ban gay marriage, insisting that marriage does not have a history of being exclusively between men and women. The blessed, loving institution should instead mean a commitment between two people, regardless of gender. When asked how he would deal with the crazy conservatives, Gravel told us he’d try to reason with them, but if they didn’t agree with him, forget it. “I don’t want that kind of person’s vote,” he told us at dinner before the event.
Of course, he didn’t hit the mark on everything. As Joe.My.God points out, 77-year old Gravel stumbled over the ‘T’ in LGBT: “Be proud of who you are, whether you’re gay or lesbian or transvestitite.” An honest mistake. Gravel’s ignorance of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, however, does qualify as worrisome. In his defense, however, the question about the Act employed the acronym ENDA, so perhaps he didn’t quite comprehend the meaning. Or maybe he’d just been chilling with Andrew Sullivan, for Gravel told us he sees no reason why marijuana’s illegal, drawing more than a few cheers from the lubricated crowd.
While some may scoff at Gravel’s underdog status, his candidacy’s more than just a bid for the presidency. Gravel and his staff not only embody the American political ideal: an everyday man trying to do extraordinary things. His race symbolizes what’s great about the democratic process.