Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Over & Over

I'm listing about trying to come to some conclusions of last nights events and can't help but wanting to cry. I went to one of the 130 theaters simultaneously producing "The Laramie Project: An Epilogue" and it was a beautiful event. As I sometimes do, I really got emotional thinking about the pain and noise of the event that took place just 11 short years ago. I replayed the events of Matthew Shephard last night (it being the exact moment of his death on October 12, 1998). He screamed as his body was tortured and he writhed around in pain. The force of the pistol whipping he received scattered blood over 10 yards each way from his body and his watch was found 30 yards further. Those men were predators and they got to live. He died alone, cold, and away from anyone he knew or loved.

It seems like so much has changed: Queer As Folk, Will & Grace, Brothers & Sisters, the Fight against Prop 8, the election of Barack Obama, the funding for AIDS research in Africa (Bush's one good note). But so much is left to be done: Marriage rights (repeal of DOMA), civil rights (repeal of DADT; the Matthew Shepard Act; ENDA), tax rights. I will my generation to get this done. I will fight this fight because it's not about me! I totally saw that last night when I was surrounded by college students that had no real idea about the event. I mean, Matthew Shepard was 6 years older than me but I knew his shoes (growing up in a homophobic small town where people cling to their guns, religion and drugs), and worried that my secret would come out then and I would end up like him.

I do recognize that it was a hate crime and there's much work to do on that, regardless of the killers intention (or subsequent statements). But it's got to be about the next generation. WE HAVE to fight for them. We have to make it safe for them to be actualized as healthy, productive, safe adults so there must be less room in our lives for hate and more room for love. I've been blessed with more days on this earth and yet have done less, and for that I'm ashamed. Maybe I should keep with my small part and keep at it.

Some Chris Garneau Lyrics:

Not my fault, you said so oh
You said it over and over
It's not my fault, you said so oh
You said it over and over

Now I'm in this thing, this fucking thing,
I'm stuck over and over
Yeah I'm in this thing, this fucking thing
It's happening over and over

When you give me things, they make me sad
You give them over and over
I can't feel the days, but I'd like to say
Remember the days when we used to

But I don't feel them over and over

Not my fault, you said so oh
You said it over and over
It's not my fault, you said so oh
You said it over and over

Now I'm in this thing, this fucking thing,
It's happening over and over
Yeah I'm in this thing, this fucking thing,
I'm STUCK over and over

When you give me things, they make me sad
You give them over and over
I can't feel the days, but I'd like to, say
Remember the days when we used to

But I don't feel them over and over
We're Rockers, Anyway
Just skin and bones, good hair, good clothes
and that's how it goes, we've got sweet little toes

And it's all la la la la up to me now
There's a lot of work work work to do
And it's all la la la la up to me now
Leave me be be be be be I am through

4 comments:

Steven Anthony said...

powerful post!

Dean Grey said...

Dane!

I'm embarrassed to admit it but I didn't hear about the Laramie Project until you mentioned it.

What was it about exactly? Exclusively dealing with Matthew Shephard or gay issues in general?

You have such a passion for changing laws and fighting for people's rights. It sounds like you might have a career in politics down the road!

-Dean

Dane said...

It's a play about actual interviews with the people of Laramie Wyoming immediately after the murder of Matthew Shepard. The epilogue (what we saw) was by the same theater company returning 10 years later to re-interview a lot of the main players (and a few new ones) in the original piece. They even interviewed the murderers which ended up being the most powerful part.

It does deal with gay issues but in the context of Wyoming and what's been done since his death. Basically the Matthew Shepard Act which is yet to reach the president's desk is the only thing that's happened positively (the Hate Crimes Bill).

I worked on three campaigns last year and am looking forward to working on a few next year. I ended up only being 1 for 3 but still it was quite invigorating to be a part of the process (the campaigns were the Obama campaign; Jim Roth for Corporation Commissioner- a gay politician who was running to be the first state wide elected gay public official from Oklahoma-he had been appointed by the governor 2 years previously; and the No on Prop 8 campaign).

Dean Grey said...

Good for you, Dane!

-Dean