Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Gay Rights & Elizabeth Edwards

I know Elizabeth Edwards is younger than me by a couple of weeks; but I want to be a lot like her when I grow up.

On Sunday, she came out in support of gay marriage. At San Francisco's Gay Pride Parade kickoff event, she spoke about legalizing gay marriage. The fact she was there says a lot about her commitment to equal rights for everyone.

The San Francisco Gay Pride Parade is about as "out there" as gay pride parades get. She didn't release her position in a ream of documents sent to the media. She stood in the midst of the most gloriously flamboyant, gayest venue of gay pride and declared, "I don't know why somebody else's marriage has anything to do with me, I'm completely comfortable with gay marriage.'' Note that she did not say civil unions; she's talking about the "M" word. Good for her.

Her example of how to live with cancer serves as a powerful role model for everyone, not just those with cancer. As a former oncology nurse, I understand the fear that a cancer diagnosis brings to a woman and her family. Her strength and honesty demonstrates a way to keep going in the face of mortality and not-so-great odds.

And then there was yesterday. She successfully shut up the most vile, vicious, vane, venomous, and vulgar vampire to ever appear on television or in print. Since the very mention of this name makes me sick, let's just call her, AC.

AC was appearing on the Chris Mathews show on MSNBC spewing her typical disgusting attacks on anyone and everyone, including Elizabeth's husband, presidential candidate John Edwards. AC has said that John had a bumper sticker on his car that reads, "ask me about my dead son," a reference to Wade Edwards, who died in 2004 in an automobile accident. Earlier this week AC said that she will "just wish he [John Edwards] had been killed in a terrorist assassination plot." Elizabeth Edwards called in and effectively shut AC up, and made her look like what she is... an evil hate monger.

I am sure there were 'handlers" telling her not to call, to let it go. But, there are times, and I believe AC on a live TV show is one of those times, when one must confront the evil in front of them.

Edward R. Murrow did it to Joseph McCarthy in 1954 when he was on a "witch hunt" for communists. AC does not have the power Joe McCarthy had, but she certainly has the hatred down pat.

I am proud that Elizabeth Edwards is unwilling to let collective ignorance impair her recognition of the obvious. AC is the elephant in the room. She is a distraction for the unempowered who do not know who to blame for their plight. AC is a tool of the right that distracts the poor and disenfranchised to act (nee, vote) against their own self interests.

I applaud her cojones (or should that be ovaries?). Elizabeth Edwards is a rock star to me.

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