Hollywood Reporter Cover Girl Rachel Maddow Iffy On Gay Marriage

We know a lot of people who have gotten married but I don’t think we feel any urgency about it…. I feel that gay people not being able to get married for generations, forever, meant that we came up with alternative ways of recognizing relationships. And I worry that if everybody has access to the same institutions that we lose the creativity of subcultures having to make it on their own. And I like gay culture.”

—Rachel Maddow, about her and girlfriend Susan Mikula’s odds of tying the knot, in the October issue of The Hollywood Reporter.

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  • Trent

    I agree with that fact that gays have the right to get married; but I really like what Rachel says here. I have known a number of couples who aren’t married and still have completly fulfilled relationships. That and just because we can get married; doesn’t mean that we have to. I hope she sticks to her guns.

  • christopher di spirito

    This quote may be one of the most ignorant I’ve ever read from Le Maddow.

    On the order of 1,400 legal Federal rights are conferred upon married couples in the U.S.

    Among them are the rights to:

    ? joint parenting;
    ? joint adoption;
    ? joint foster care, custody, and visitation (including non-biological parents);
    ? status as next-of-kin for hospital visits and medical decisions where one partner is too ill to be competent;
    ? joint insurance policies for home, auto and health;
    ? dissolution and divorce protections such as community property and child support;
    ? immigration and residency for partners from other countries;
    ? inheritance automatically in the absence of a will;
    ? joint leases with automatic renewal rights in the event one partner dies or leaves the house or apartment;
    ? inheritance of jointly-owned real and personal property through the right of survivorship (which avoids the time and expense and taxes in probate);
    ? benefits such as annuities, pension plans, Social Security, and Medicare;
    ? spousal exemptions to property tax increases upon the death of one partner who is a co-owner of the home;
    ? veterans’ discounts on medical care, education, and home loans; joint filing of Federal tax returns;
    ? joint filing of customs claims when traveling;bullet wrongful death benefits for a surviving partner and children;
    ? bereavement or sick leave to care for a partner or child;
    ? decision-making power with respect to whether a deceased partner will be cremated or not and where to bury him or her;
    ? crime victims’ recovery benefits;
    ? loss of consortium tort benefits;
    ? domestic violence protection orders;
    ? judicial protections and evidentiary immunity.

    Maddow should stick to finding creative ways to explain away President Obama’s failed presidency and leave the issue of marriage equality alone.

  • Michael

    How does marriage make us lose the creativity of subcultures? What I do not think Rachel understands is that if marriage was EQUAL for both gays and straights that would be a POSITIVE thing.Yes some do not get married more power to them I respect that always have some people even in this community do not want to get married thats perfectly fine.But for her to say something like this:And I worry that if everybody has access to the same institutions that we lose the creativity of subcultures having to make it on their own.

    ^^^This does not help our cause in the least.Ive noticed also that a lot of the bigots are trying their best to find statements such as the ones Rachel made about gay marriage to support their argument as to why we SHOULDN’T be allowed to or should get married to begin with.

    It never helps or furthers our cause when people who ARE gay say something negative about marriage it only furthers the bigots arguments and gives them evidence to support their stupid arguments. Not to mention people are not fighting to get married JUST to get married its about being treated equally and with equal respect.Civil unions are not recognized under the law MARRIAGE however is .Marriage has always been about love not gender commitment devotion a unity between 2 hearts and 2 people for eternity. A solemn vow a bond that connects 2 people always Ive always thought that was beautiful.

    I never will understand comments like Rachels though if you are not for gay marriage then more power to you but comments like this do not help those of us who truly WANT that to happen one day.I like Rachel always have always will but I think she was a little ignorant with what she said here I can’t sit here and deny that.

    Being married does not take away our identities it does however allow us the respect under the law that we truly deserve as human beings and Americans. Instead of seeing something in the papers about 2 same sex men or women having a civil union it would be wonderful to see more and more 2 same sex couple were married today .That’s my dream anyways.

  • Michael

    @christopher di spirito:

    Exactly and marriage would also allow a partner to be at the bedside of their sick partner in the hospital if god forbid anything ever happened to them.Not being married makes that an extremely difficult ordeal especially not being allowed to be in the same room as your loved one who may be dying because you are not recognized under the law as being married to the person laying in the hospital bed.

  • Mav

    I understand what Rachel was trying to say (and I’m pretty sure she was JUST speaking for herself and her partner, not all gay couples).

    I personally would like the big Father of the Bride wedding, but I’m perfectly capable of staging that event with or without state/church approval.

    However, Christopher’s points are valid, and I’m sure at some point in the future I would feel cheated by the lack of protections my “commitment ceremony” afforded me, no matter how lovely.

  • christopher di spirito

    @Michael: Exactly. Not only that but Maddow is a millionaire and doesn’t need the advantages of filing joint Federal income tax returns. I really thought she was smarter but apparently, she’s not.

  • fredo777

    What Rachel said makes perfect sense. I’m in support of marriage equality + all of its legal rights/benefits, but I think her main point was that even if we are granted those same rights, she doesn’t want gays to start trying so hard to assimilate + straight-wash their individual culture away.

  • fredo777

    Also, didn’t hospital visitation for gay patients’ loved ones already get proposed (by Obama) + approved? Unless I’m mistaken.

  • Pocket Otter

    Did they actually refer to Maddow as a cover “girl”?

  • tj

    What Fredo said. but also what Chistopher di spirito said.

    She could have worded it better. I’m completely against the marriage focus of the movement I don’t think it has a trickle down effect on more pressing issues.

  • Michael


    That makes no sense whatsoever nor did Rachels comment claiming that. The only way a person rids themselves of their identity and what they stand for is if they HATED themselves that much to begin with.

    Her statement made no logical sense whatsoever in that regard. Gay culture will ALWAYS be here also marriage makes no difference in that regard whatsoever in all honesty that is a ridiculous statement for anyone to make gay or straight.

  • Gemma H

    Its a valid point that in lgbt and indeed queer space we’ve begun to evolve past our preconceptions of marriage. I still don’t know what the legal framework will look like for polyamorous marriage, or other forms of relationships. If I’m in a relationship with my primary partner, does my secondary partner have any rights?

    Marriage equality is a vital part of getting the basic protections, rights and responsibilities that straight couples get when they choose to get married, BUT its a stepping stone on the path to the next stage of where we are going. Its one of the reasons I’m opposed to HRC is because they are blinkered in their approach,

    “We want this, and once we get this, we’ll be good little queers who might vote republican” seems to be their platform, but it ignores all of us who don’t fit into these convenient pigeonholes.

  • fredo777

    @Michael: There was nothing in that quote that didn’t make logical sense. Perhaps you are inferring things that weren’t her intended meaning, but based solely on what is in that excerpt, she voices an opinion that isn’t wholly unique. There are others who are LGBT + not supportive of gay marriage because they feel it would lead to gays becoming too homogenized.

  • iDavid

    I appreciate Rachel’s rogue style however, discrimination is too much under the collective magnifying glass to not force societies hand and make gay marriage legal. I guess some people find the hard way more interesting and “sub-culturish” but I can assure Rachel, even if gay marriage is avail to e everyone, the idea of gay subculture will still be faaaaar from over.

  • Michael


    Well I personally do not see anything wrong with having the same rights as any straight couple in this country does.I’d much rather see that Ive been married instead of someone announcing me and the one I want to marry as a civil union couple .It’s not the same thing no matter how someone attempts to justify it.Ive also done my research civil unions and marriage are NOT the same thing in too many ways to even count.I respect that some may feel that way though about it being the same as everyone else.But I thought that was what we were fighting for to begin with? To be treated no different then any heterosexual american is in this country to be treated with equal respect and equal fairness.

  • fredo777

    @Michael: Absolutely, + I actually share your opinion on that. I do feel that we all should have the same rights (including marriage) available to us. But I also understand why LGBT opponents (or just those who have their reservations about gay marriage) might feel in fighting for more “conventional” relationships, we will lose the unconventional character that makes our community so unique.

    Ultimately, I still think it’s a chance we should take, because I think every person should be allowed to marry their significant other (+ I hate when gay persons refer to their spouse as their “partner”, because it sounds so cold + formal).

  • the crustybastard

    I thought that seemed like a very strange quote myself.

    So I went to the original Hollywood Reporter article. What Queerty’s Dan Avery did here was cut the main point of Maddow’s argument and replace it with ellipses, which fundamentally misrepresents her statement.

    What is missing is the sentence, “Later she admits that she’s actually ambivalent about the cultural impact of gay marriage.” Contrary to popular belief, ambivalent isn’t a synonym for indifferent (or “iffy” for that matter). Quite the contrary, it actually means to possess simultaneously contradictory feelings.

    In this case, Maddow is saying that she feels the cultural impact of marriage can be both positive and negative. The positive effects of marriage equality being self-evident, she explains what she feels is the negative. Maddow has a special genius for grasping the various sides of every issue, so taken in context, this comment does not surprise or trouble me at all. It’s simply the way her mind works.

  • One of the CA 36,000

    I LOVE Rachel Maddow. I find her political commentary refreshing and unusually insightful. She’s not just a liberal pundit, she’s a liberal political analyst who articulates her opinions AND backs them up with research and careful thought. And she has been in the trenches for LGBTQ rights, especially HIV/AIDS-related issues, for years and years.

    I see her point, and I do think she’s expressing her opinion as far as it relates to her relationship with her girlfriend, but not beyond that. I also think that it reflects a very hermetically-sealed academic view of gender relations. I always can tell when someone has had too many graduate-level courses in Queer Studies.

    I’m married and I can tell you– things are different. Even the biggest homophobes in our neighborhood have softened to fully accepting us, once they’ve met us and figured out that we’re not a threat. We don’t want to destroy their marriage, we want to hire their gardener. We won’t recruit their kids, we’ll help them move those heavy boxes out of their garage. We’re kind of normal.

    Dr. Maddow, don’t fear that gay and lesbian married couples will mean the end of LGBTQ identity. Don’t fear ASSIMILATION– celebrate ACCEPTANCE. We don’t disappear, we simply become a rather fabulous part of the patchwork quilt that is our society. Gay culture won’t go away; it’s becoming another menu choice. What the hell is wrong with that?!?

  • AJ

    @fredo777: Yes, anyone who watches her show knows she’s pro-gay marriage. She’s just personally indifferent. And frankly, a lot of gays are, especially older liberal/intellectual gays. This is not a new or innovative position at all. In fact it’s been the party line for PhDs like Maddow for about 20 years.

    I agree with @the crustybastard. She’s just being nuanced about it. (Although I think the quote above represents her ambivalence just fine, unless you’re a knee-jerk commenter and read it as anti-gay marriage, which she is not).

  • T_WOOD

    Well said, Rachel. Well said.

  • jas

    christopher di spirito you are out of your depth and missing the point here.. she is talking about retaining the uniqueness of our culture, while mainstreaming. please take time to read and further conceptualize topics before knee jerking..

  • jas


    she is NOT saying that she is against having the same rights… you need to take a careful look at what you are analyzing before typing. it seems you are lacking the ability to judge both context and content. she is talking about the fabric that sustains certain subclasses and the loveliness that comes with adapting to changes within larger cultures. she is talking about retaining that within the larger framework of gay marriage.. please educate yourself

  • jas


    umm please research the rights and benefits of marriage before making such a widespread and ignorant claim.

  • Little Kiwi

    i don’t have any issue with what she said. i dig.

  • Chris

    What a stupid cunt.

    Who is she to say that GLBT people shouldn’t have the right to have same gender marriage?

    Granted we’re not all media whores or worth tons of money like this bitch but she’s clearly talking out of her ass.

    What passes and pretends to be a gay/GLBT “culture” hasn’t ever existed and is thankfully going by the wayside along with dreadful relics of the past like “The boys in the band”.

  • Chris

    What a stupid cunt and an all around hypocrite.

    Who is she to say that GLBT people shouldn’t have the right to have same gender marriage?

    Granted we’re not all media whores or worth tons of money like this bitch but she’s clearly talking out of her ass.

    What passes and pretends to be a gay/GLBT “culture” hasn’t ever existed and is thankfully going by the wayside along with dreadful relics of the past like “The boys in the band”.

  • Little Kiwi

    Chris, all you’re doing is proving that your reading comprehension skills are sorely lacking.

    She doesn’t say any of the things you claimed to say, gay culture does indeed exist for those who aren’t so butt-hurt about being gay that they refuse to accept it, and you owe your gay ass to The Boys in the Band which remains one of the most groundbreaking works illustrating the limits and frustrations of pre-Liberation gay males.

    ironically, more than 40 years later, you embody everything about The Boys in the Band that you claim to dislike – utter resentment about being a homosexual.


    if you’re gonna be angry at someone or something then be be angry for the right reasons. nothing you wrote made sense. kudos.

  • Dave

    I love how so many rich/famous gays and lesbians so easily and effortlessly brush off basic marriage/civil equality rights because they just don’t have a need for it themselves.

    Meanwhile, millions of lesbians, bisexual men and women, and gay mens’ lives are affected adversely every single day because we can’t marry or because the Federal government refuses to acknowledge a state’s marriage equality law.

    Think about that while you’re counting your money at night, you worthless turn-coat dyke.

    Fuck her. That is such an “I’ve got mine,” middle-aged-financially-secure-dyke thing to say.

    Guess who’ll NOT be watching or recording her show anymore?

  • Little Kiwi

    ………….are y’all capable of reading? seriously. check out what she ACTUALLY said.

  • Michael


    Agreed I never have understood why they just can not call them their husband or wife.Married or not if its not legalized where I live in South Carolina before I die.I will call the person I marry even if it is it is god forbid a civil union my husband. :)

  • Michael


    Stfu you arrogant twit and do not EVER tell me I need to educate myself.I know that civil unions are marriage are heads and tails different from one another and I am beyond sick and damn tired of morons like you slamming people for what they write how they write it and for having different opinions then you do.Fuck you seriously you’re nothing special nor are your words nor the way you write better or more important then what I have to say.HUMILITY for the last goddamn time get some .Ugh.

    Reread what I said also moron I specifically said I liked Maddow just did not agree with what she said.Then after reading Crustys point I realized it was apparently taken out of context.That was not my fault if a sites gonna be professional then they should include EVERYTHING that is said instead of cutting portions of it out and pasting it here where it can confuse people who may misconstrue what her point is.

  • SG

    She’s saying this because her boyfriend, Obama, just said that he’s flat out not supportive of faggots, switch hitters, and dykes marrying.

    Maddow is a Obamabot, and has been since Day 1.

  • Robert in NYC

    Whether we marry or not, it’s not going to change anything about the subculture of our people. That fact that we’re gay is enough to define it. Everybody should have the right to marry, and everybody has the right not to, but there must be choice rather than nothing. I don’t think this is one of Maddow’s finer moments by any stretch. I’m surprised at her although I won’t stop watching her, love the woman.

  • Little Kiwi

    well, the reality is that some people (gay AND straight) *want* to marry for the wrong reasons.

    look at divorce rates – we live in a culture of Dream Weddings, not dream MARRIAGES. and i’m talking about straight folks, here.

    they want to get married ‘because that’s what you’re supposed to do’ – then end up divorcing because they didn’t get married for the right reasons, which have nothing to do with feelings of “what’s expected of you”

    similarly, with LGBT couples, some couples want to get married because they have a deep need to be seen as “normal” in the eyes of greater culture. that’s the wrong reason to marry. the reality is that Equality should not be a goal of convincing people that ‘we’re just like you’ – but rather ‘we’re different from you, but that doesn’t mean you need to harbor prejudice of feelings of negativity toward us.’

    we, of course, deserve full and equal rights and freedoms. we deserve the right to make the same mistakes that straight couples have been making for decades. i may never choose to marry, but i want to be able to make that choice myself.

  • Elloreigh

    We developed a subculture in large part due to our marginalization. Which is the greater priority – full legal equality, or maintaining a gay subculture? I think the answer is subjective. Personally, I have only limited use for the gay subculture, but would benefit considerably from the ability to legally marry my husband. I have no desire whatsoever to maintain or celebrate my marginalization as a gay man.

    Maddow is entitled to her opinion, but it’s just that – an opinion. I don’t share it, and she doesn’t speak for me.

  • Michael

    @Little Kiwi:

    The ironic thing is so many heterosexual americans are trying to PROTECT marriage yet… they aren’t looking at all the ADULTERY spousal abuse infidelity and DIVORCE that runs rampant within THAT community.The irony is priceless as is the hypocrisy.

  • Little Kiwi

    or the focus on “kids needing a mother and father” – not all married gay couples are going to have children. gay couples who DO have children are put at a disadvantage by their inability to marry.

    and there are a great many other demographic groups that have incredibly high-numbers of children being born to single mothers. and no, it aint the gays.

  • Michael

    @Little Kiwi:

    Well just look at the mormons they are popping out kids all the time.

    I never have understood that part of it they claim that gay parents are not good for children yet you do not see any of us popping out kids like we are horny rabbits like the Mormons do all the time.

    Hell they can barely take care of the kids they have then a minute later uh oh here comes another mouth to feed lol

    For instance I have a niece and nephew adore them both but ive never been in that way of thinking.I’d rather a child be in a home thats very nurturing and loving I have those qualities believe it or not but as far as children go… way too impatient for that lol

    Its funny they mention kids needing a mother and a father too… when half these kids are ABUSED by their mothers or fathers or both.These people will never understand they lie and lie and lie just like cherry picking bible thumpers always do… they only show you what they want you to see not what is truthful factual or realistic.Only what THEY want you to see or believe.

  • Chad

    What is gay/LGBT culture exactly?

    Promiscuity, boring and shallow backstabbing drag queens, drugs and alcohol, HIV and other STDs, and really bad dance music? No thanks.

  • Little Kiwi


    if that’s what you see then that speaks volumes about your own sense of self as a gay man.

    the gay (and indeed Queer) cultures that I’ve been involved in have been about diversity, the celeration of differences, te strength in finding who you are in a world that is not made for you, a world of culture and art and insight to the human experience. no wonder i love my life as a gay man so much.

    you only see negatives. how’s that working for you so far?

  • missanthrope

    She only said that she hopes that people don’t feel the pressure narrow their options just because we have the option to get married. She never said a word against I support the right to get married, but it’s not for me and I hope that someday we can have recognition of other options such as non-monogamous relationships also.

    Why are people flipping out because she said that she wants to have more than one option? Why so insecure?

    “What is gay/LGBT culture exactly?

    Promiscuity, boring and shallow backstabbing drag queens, drugs and alcohol, HIV and other STDs, and really bad dance music? No thanks.”

    Sounds like you’re hanging around with the wrong people or that you like to make generalizations, the queers I know are pretty cool.

  • Little Kiwi

    @missanthrope: ditto.

    if a gay man only holds resentment and negativity toward the gay communities it says more about them and less about the communities.

    you might as well say “what is straight culture? drunken violent misogyny masquerading os toughness and a complete lack of intellectual and social finesse?”

    oh, wait…..


  • PS

    IMO Maddow is completely WRONG in her views on this topic. There is NO way that the LGBT community cans sit back and support legal inequality for fear that we’ll “lose” part of our unique sub culture. So, in order to keep the black culture unique, we should take away some of their legal rights? Then, after that, we’ll focus on the Jews and other minority groups. Maybe SHE chooses to not get married and she isn’t affected by inequality. BUT, there are plenty of us in the LGBT like me that are affected by inequality because of both state and federal laws that say that gays are not equal to straights. It affects my relationship, my job, my benefits, etc. I’m finished watching her show. Personally, I’ve always seen her as divisive and unwilling to see compromise or other people’s views respectfully. This convinces me that she has nothing to offer me with these type of opinions that only hinder legal equality and unity amongst Americans, regardless of your sexuality or political affiliation.

  • Pinkish Hugh

    What the hell does Maddow have to do with Hollywood? She watches TV? Golly, with those credentials, I expect to be on the cover of Entertainment Weekly.

  • curiousgeorge

    I live in Sweden where we’ve had the option of marriage since 2009 and registered partnership since way before that. Me and my partner have been together since 1992 and do not need to be married to know that we belong together. We did get married last year, however, to get the legal advantages that comes with marriage; like the right to make medical decisions for your spouse in the case of a serious accident or acute illness, or the right of the surviving partner to inherit his spouse. If either of these things happen and we weren’t married I could hypothetically be denied access to my partner in a medical facility and/or be forced to buy out my partners family since they would own half our 500 000 euro home.

    Gay people need the legal protection of marriage and it’s up to the individual, gay or straight, to define what marriage means to them.

  • the crustybastard


    If nobody worthwhile in the gay community wants to be friends with you, the consistent variable is you.

  • the crustybastard


    Please see my post #17. The Queerty contributor has substantially and unfairly misrepresented Maddow’s point.

  • Red Meat

    @Chad: That statement basically shows what type of person you are and what kind of friends you have, meanwhile the rest of us have a better life among the heterosexuals.

  • Spike

    Very simply, all Rachel is saying is don’t expect every gay couple in NY to get married just because NY has approved marriage equality.

  • trevor bartlet

    She’s not funny and she’s not even particularly bright. Who gives a rat’s ass what she thinks or says.

  • Chad

    “gay culture” or “GLBT culture” is ghetto culture. It’s not a culture of a people who are empowered. It’s a culture of victims trying to make the best of our oppression and persecution. That’s not freedom, it’s survival.

    We need full equal rights NOW.

    The idea that persecution creates freedom is classic internalized oppression mentality. You cannot be free and enslaved at the same time. You can try to make the best of your circumstances, which is what we do. But to suggest that enslavement to oppression is somehow liberating is completely insane.

  • Sam

    She’s a moron. So denying us our equal rights fuels diversity? bullshit. I guess Martin Luther King Jr. wasted his entire life, then. She’s overdosed on “queer politics” and bought into her own oppression. A complete idiot.

  • Stuffed Animal

    An ignorant statement like this from a woman intelligent enough to know better just proves what I’ve always believed: Segregation is bad. When you are a member of an oppressed minority group, you don’t identify with other kinds of people, and you adopt that narrow “us vs. them” mentality, your rational thought processes begin to suffer. Rachel Maddow’s retrograde position on marriage doesn’t represent me, and I daresay it doesn’t represent the majority of Gay people, either. It has much more in common with the thinking of a hetero-bigot. I never noticed that slave bandanna around Rachel’s head before; how could I have missed it?

  • Stuffed Animal

    My previous post should read this:
    I daresay it doesn’t represent the majority of GLBT people, either. It has much more in common with the thinking of a hetero-bigot. I never noticed that slave bandanna around Rachel’s head before; how could I have missed it?

  • Lefty

    She isn’t denying us anything. She isn’t saying she doesn’t support gay marriage nor is she arguing against it, she’s just expressing a personal concern about the possible consequences.
    I can’t stand the woman, but for fucks sake can none of you people read?
    There are so many knuckle-draggers commenting on this site since it came back… :(

  • Queer Supremacist

    I’ve seen more support for marriage on friggin’ Fox News (technically it was Fox Business Channel, but still…)

    I think Chad overgeneralizes, but he has a point. The things that he condemns are still a cancer on the gay “community”, and they are a byproduct of a two-millennia hetero jihad against us.

    Rachel, who looks like Paul from “The Wonder Years”, is afraid that gay culture will change if we had legal equality. This change already started happening once we were able to be openly gay in the first place.

  • DavyJones

    Wow, you guys are certainly jumping allover her for a pretty vague quote. She is talking about whether or not she and her partner are going to get married soon. She is not saying she does not support marriage equality for LGBT people.

    Stop reading Queerty Headlines as though they were facts, and stop making mountains out of mole hills.

  • jason

    My two cents:

    I think Maddow is an idiot. And I think the gay community is collectively an idiot. Someone needs to tell the bitch she’s a liar.

    And the same to gays who vehemently support marriage equality, yet aren’t interested in marriage, all while comparing it to slavery. Shame on all of you.

  • George412

    She’s right. We have given up a lot to become like everyone else.

  • ewe

    She is a zombie for the Bummer at all costs. No surprise here now that she is diminishing the importance of marriage equality. I call it her agenda. You are obvious Rachael Maddow.

  • ewe

    Keep trying to convince yourself Rachael maddow and you won’t have to bother asking important questions like whether or not the Bummer has evolved yet?

  • ronsfo

    I mostly agree with Rachel.

    Gay culture: How does one define Gay culture, the big difficult question? From my perspective, LGBT people are a cohesive collection of individuals with an unlimited potential of resourceful diversity. We are not part of any; race, cult, religion, tribe or other tangle segment of humanity, we are unique in the fabric of human culture.

    If all the homosexuals and sexually diverse people were wiped off the face of the earth, the next generation of heterosexuals would produce a new generation of Gay culture. Homosexuals and sexually diverse people have this very special innate ability to find one another in a just about any situation, call it Gaydar or 6th sense if you will. Next thing you know we have a new Gay group and instinctually we keep to our selves and excel in our unique aptitudes. In some cultures we have been revered as high priests, shaman and spiritual leaders, but mostly condemned in other cultures and forced into ghettos, marginalized left to our own devices, but we are resourceful and we survive.

    Recently I read “Wide Open Town,” a book documenting San Francisco’s Gay history before 1964. Far back even in the early 20s, long before anyone ever heard of the Castro, there was a diverse Gay culture in San Francisco, it’s a fascinating read and with many personal accounts and experiences. There’s one common thread, that run through book, LGBT people create their own culture, no matter how difficult the social terrain might be, we stick together when the going gets rough.

    Even in early Gay culture, it’s pointed out in the book, there are those homosexuals that want assimilation and society’s acceptance, being domesticated, have careers and others that want to be creative, expressive, visible, rebellious and revolutionary, things haven’t changed much, today we only more vocal and visible.

    To add to Rachael’s article, are we becoming too mainstream? What happens after we achieve equality? I want equality like everyone else, but do I have to trade in my Gay card to get it. I like being a Gay man, I wouldn’t be any other way, I’m unique, special, different and proud, but and I want it all; including a husband and a marriage certificate in our family album, Gay ghettos full of drag queens, over decorated homes, muscle men, bath houses with orgies, pride parades with millions of people and all my dead friends from the AIDS epidemic returned happy and healthy. Yea right! So have to choose between fantasy and reality, one thing LGBT people are not good at.

    But I’m not 25 anymore either, so equality, is my choice and but I still won’t turn in my Gay card.

  • ewe

    @ronsfo: There is no either or. The issue is whether or not LGBT people tell others to fuck off and stop looking for the approval of outsiders who don’t have a fucking clue as to what it means to be LGBT. Stop letting the Hermain Cains and Bill Donahues define what being LGBT is. They need to be thrown up against the wall when they start shooting off their mouths. If bigots want fucking scientific proof regarding sexual orientation then tell them they need to furnish it for and about themselves first. Rachael Maddow is making a calculating move by saying this nonsense about not wanting marriage equality because she sorta likes being “underground.” She is ONLY saying this to give OBummer a pass. If she doesn’t want marriage equality she doesn’t have to address the question of him discriminating against LGBT people and can continue to tell everyone to vote for him. It’s complete bullshit.

  • ewe

    And if i was her partner i would damn well hire an attorney PRONTO.

  • JayKay

    The precious, unique little snowflakes can go ahead and shut their precious, unique little mouths about marriage being some horrible, awful thing for gays. It would be the best thing that could happen for us, even if you don’t want to get married. Why do you think antigay organizations save their loudest, most heated rhetoric for marriage? Because they know what so many of these radical, edgy little self-proclaimed queers don’t, that gay marriage would radically alter the country’s attitude toward gays in a way that ENDA never could.

    And if it means the death of the vapid, shallow, hyper-promiscuous, drug abusing, club hopping “gay culture,” that would just be a nice little bonus.

  • WillBFair

    I think she’s just saying marraige is ok, and so is shacking up, and she enjoys old timey gay culture. What the hell is wrong with that?
    Being of the age, I also like gay culture, to an extent. I celebrate the healthy aspects but criticize the negative aspects. I celebrate camp, gender bending, taste, art, fine living, community, and creative responses to oppression. I criticize internalized homophobia, the inadequate response to hiv, groupthink, and the self destructive crowd that’s sabotaged us for thirty years, these days by spitting hatred at our allies in the liberal church.

  • FYI

    Yeah right, “fredo777”, our “LGBT opponents” are REALLY worried that “we will lose the unconventional character that makes our community so unique.”

    Try proof-reading sometime.


    @fredo777 who weirdly wrote:”But I also understand why LGBT opponents (or just those who have their reservations about gay marriage) might feel in fighting for more “conventional” relationships, we will lose the unconventional character that makes our community so unique.”

  • CBRad

    @FYI: I think he just made a typo. Come on, we’ve ALL done that.

  • Anthony

    @Michael: @Chris:
    To quote Lile Kiwi since he didn’t hit reply and I think you need to read it

    Chris, all you’re doing is proving that your reading comprehension skills are sorely lacking.
    She doesn’t say any of the things you claimed to say, gay culture does indeed exist for those who aren’t so butt-hurt about being gay that they refuse to accept it, and you owe your gay ass to The Boys in the Band which remains one of the most groundbreaking works illustrating the limits and frustrations of pre-Liberation gay males.
    ironically, more than 40 years later, you embody everything about The Boys in the Band that you claim to dislike – utter resentment about being a homosexual.
    if you’re gonna be angry at someone or something then be be angry for the right reasons. nothing you wrote made sense. kudos.

  • Me

    I would love to see the eradication of gay subculture (a fantasy construct comprised of highly-factionalized sub groups often going unrepresented by those few who clamor for media attention, thus shaping the perception of what said culture is); we could then move forward as people and not marginalized entities.

  • Suca

    @Stuffed Animal: So much snark and raunch in your comments.

  • Will

    She was NOT making a personal statement, she was making a statement about how equality will harm our “diversity.” That’s an incomprehensible and reprehensible statement. As I’ve already stated, this romantic notion that GLBT “culture” somehow liberates us from the “tyranny of heterosexuality” is a mentality informed by internalized homophobia. She’s bought into her own oppression. If the society can convince you that discrimination is actually good for you, then they don’t have to do much to keep you down…you’ll do it to yourself. This is a perfect example of how oppression works successfully. You must have some collusion by the oppressed to keep them oppressed; in order to get that collusion, you have to convince them that they’re better off being oppressed.

    Maddow has completely bought into it. Same gender marriage equality doesn’t threaten GLBT people in any way…it EMPOWERS us. Freedom is freedom and slavery is slavery. Slavery is NOT freedom. To suggest that we are freer because we are being oppressed is classic internalized self-loathing. It’s ridiculous. Anyone with the tiniest bit of political consciousness knows that having more choices doesn’t “ruin” freedom, it enhances it. We cannot be fully assimilated because we do not fit the “norm” as it is defined in this society. We “deviate” from it by our very existences. We will not melt into a community of Stepford gays. To suggest THAT is to also suggest that feminists are oppressing women by fighting for their liberation, and that Martin Luther King Jr. was harming people of color by championing their rights. It takes the truth and turns it completely on its head.

    I would ask Maddow…”So the women’s movement has created less freedom for women by fighting for their equal inclusion in all of society’s institutions…is that correct?” Because, in essence, that’s what she’s saying. Women have MORE freedom today because of the fight for equality, not LESS. The same is true for all groups who have battled society for a place at the table. It’s not about getting “absorbed”, it’s about being lifted up from the ghetto. Oppression is NOT freedom, no matter how much queer activists try to suggest otherwise. I agree with them to the extent that I think we should celebrate the clever and effective strategies we devised to survive being made into second class citizens.BUT we cannot live in this ghetto forever pretending that being oppressed is “liberation.” The goal always has to be the right to more choices, greater freedom, and a capacity to be included as equals in whatever way we choose. To suggest that we are ‘better off’ being persecuted is insanity. And that is what she’s suggesting. There’s no “rush” for equality because we are somehow better off being oppressed. Bullshit.

  • Viktor

    It’s an interesting comment for sure…

  • ewe

    She is a marketing puppet whose goal it is to bitch and complain and never achieve anything. She sold out. For cash and recognition. She only sold herself out though because unbeknownst to the many egos like Rachael Maddow she is only one person.

  • Storm

    Maddow is correct. Our gay communities are fading. Our bookstores have essentially vanished. Our gay presses are foundering. Even “gay” bars are struggling. The leather community is pressured to stay out of sight, because they scare “people who might vote for us.” The drag queens are chastised for promoting old stereotypes. You see comments regularly now declaring Gay Pride celebrations “passe” and “embarrasing.” How many comments have we seen here decrying Dan Savage for acknowledging his open relationship with his husband? “It makes us look bad.” Yes, those 1,100 rights are important. Equality is important. But equality doesn’t mean assimilation and conformity to a heterosexual model for relationships – the house in the suburbs with picket fence, two cars, 2.4 kids and all the same tired old values – and largely failed values – that come with that.

    Not wanting to participate in those values is not a mark of “internalized homophobia.” If anything, the opposite is true, the desire to blend in and not be seen as different, “I’m just like you, except I suck dick sometimes,” is just as likely an expression of that. We can obtain those 1,100 rights. We -should- obtain those rights. But we dont have to trade off who we are, our history and, yes, our culture, to do that.

  • Little Kiwi

    exactly, Storm. Equality is not just won by saying “we’re exactly like you” – Equality is for those who may not be “exactly like” you, doesnt’ mean discrimination against them is justified.

    a straight friend, and ally, once said “being gay is just like being straight, only the sex is different”

    i had to correct him. the sex is actually the only thing that’s *the same* – it’s indeed everything else that’s different.

    Maddow isn’t saying “we shouldn’t fight for the right to marry” – i think she makes an interesting point.

  • Mark

    Gee Storm that’s funny, considering that the media whore Dan Savage who’s very biphobic, transphobic, racist, and Pozphobic has a husband, kid, and lives in a very rich suburb of Seattle in a McMansion.

    I agree with ewe.

  • Jerome

    Kiwi I would say that your straight friend is correct about how being gay, bisexual, or even lesbian is the same as being heterosexual except that the sex is different.

    I don’t care if you think that I’m mistaken or that I’m somehow a “bad” fag for siding with a heterosexual and not the collective victim fest that includes Rachel Maddow.

  • Elloreigh

    @Little Kiwi: “i had to correct him. the sex is actually the only thing that’s *the same* – it’s indeed everything else that’s different.”

    Then you should have no problem explaining to the rest of us what you perceive those differences to be.

    In my opinion, the only differences are who we’re attracted to and the minor differences in how we have sex. Everything else boils down to two factors:

    1) How we’re treated differently by the majority
    2) Behaviors some of us have adopted in reaction to our marginalization that distinguish us from the mainstream, many of which have grown into a gay subculture.

    Those two factors are NOT examples of how gay people are different from straight people. They’re examples of how we’re treated differently and how some of us act out against that treatment.

    There would be no need for “gay culture” to even exist absent our marginalization by the rest of society. Many gay people aren’t even active participants in “gay culture”. Some of us live in a reality that is little different from the straight couple next door. The differences are external: social stigmatization and marginalization, and legal marginalization. They aren’t a part of who we are, but something that may shape what we become – if we allow them to. Many of us don’t live our lives in a way substantially different from our straight counterparts, except where we run up against those external factors.

    If you really think you’re so very different from straight people, then I suggest you consider whether those differences are behavioral (something you control), or external things you can’t control (how others treat you, the lack of societal supports, and the lack of legal supports). We may have different perspectives – but those are a product of of being treated differently, not of being different.

  • Michael


    Get off your high horse Anthony I will say whatever I please whenever I please HOWEVER I please.Lose your ego also.Way to respect a difference of opinion also EGOTISTICAL much? Yeah you are once again no surprise on this site.Thanks for attempting to insult my intelligence no wonder you quoted Kiwi birds of a feather flock together as they say.Duh.

  • BubbasBack

    Media whore with a corncob for a brain! Burp.

  • ewe

    @Storm: Girl please. I got a newsflash for you. ALL BOOKSTORES are obsolete not just gay bookstores. It’s called the fucking internet. You say ” equality doesn’t mean assimilation and conformity to a heterosexual model for relationships – the house in the suburbs with picket fence, two cars, 2.4 kids and all the same tired old values – and largely failed values – that come with that.” Nobody said you have to mimic anyone just because you have the same rights. I know plenty of people who do not have a suburban house, a picket fence, two cars 2.4 kids and all those same tired old values and still have the right to get married. YOU KOOK. I am sorry if i sound mean but you’re just an asshole for trying to fucking say i do not deserve the same fucking rights as a heterosexual person. As a matter of fact, fuck you. Guess what Bitch. You do not speak for me either. That is the whole point. You have no freagin idea that you are promoting a two class system here. Gay people who cannot enjoy the same rights as straight people is a two class system and your rationale is that drag queens walking down the street next to me is quickly disappearing so ???? You are a nutjob.

  • ewe

    @Mark: Thank you Mark. Apparently some things are not even obvious to some gay people. They are just wierd to be going around saying “we don’t need equal rights because then the leather queens would be being discriminated against.” It’s not even coy much less coherent.

  • Rob

    Ewe I agree with you about leathermen and people of all genders and sexual orientations who are open about being into leather, various kinks, and BDSM.

    As a man who is out as bisexual, who dates and has relationships with men, and into leather, various other fetishes, and who practices BDSM I do not feel discriminated against at all because of being out and being into sex that’s not vanilla. I’ve been out as bisexual having first identified as gay as a teenager before discovering that I’m bisexual, and being out about being into leather and BDSM for decades. Yes there’s a lot of biphobia in the GLBT “community” but for the most part people are understanding. I also happen to understand that most people no matter what their sexual orientation is are not into BDSM and don’t have fetishes or a sexuality that can revolve around fetishes, and this is not discrimination on their part because they don’t share these things with me.

    IME leather and BDSM are pretty mainstream even if most people do not practice them sexually. Just look at how over the last few decades kink, leather, and B&D/S&M/bondage popup all over the place in pop culture and other places that it’s almost a total cliche.

  • Rob

    As for same gender marriage I am all for it. I have been single for awhile now but just because I’m fine with being single and not the marrying type I would never say that other GLBT people do not deserve same gender marriage and the idea that same gender marriage is going to somehow discriminate and keep down anyone that’s into leather, kink, BDSM, or dressing in femme drag is laughable.

  • Shannon1981

    This is disappointing. She’s willing to take inequality in order to preserve gay ghettos? I assure you, Ms. Maddow, that we will still have gay bars and Pride and the Castro and the Chelsea and all the rest- only it will be better, because we will have equality. I don’t understand why she would say these things. Also, since homophobia comes from a different place from other kinds of prejudice, there will ALWAYS be a struggle. There will forever be stupid religious nutters who think its a choice and a sin, so no need to worry about the struggle being over just because we are equal on the books. Though, I must say, glorifying inequality as a good thing is rather disturbing, especially coming from a prominent media member who also happens to be a part of our community.

  • Lefty

    Gordy from Stand By Me!!!
    It’s been bugging me for ages!

  • Chad

    Lefty I always thought she looked like Paul the nerdy character from the TV show “The Wonder Years”.

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