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Gonna be a short post tonight, kiddies. Yesterday, I finished downloading all four seasons of Dexter and I am still watching them, so I am gonna cut right to it:

So I was playing with my new iPhone and something came across the Tweeter (thats what I call Twitter) from News9 asking followers to vote on whether or not Ronald Reagan should be put on the $50 bill. Out loud, I uttered “What the fuck?” and clicked the link, which was broken. So I did a Google News search and – sure enough – one idiot in Congress (Patrick McHenry) is wanting to put Ronnie on the $50. I know he is a hero of the conservatives and all, but this is just ridiculous.

As the country is going bankrupt, you have these idiots out there arguing about whose face should be printed on the increasingly worthless paper. Imagine the irony! What a joke. Tell ya, folks: the tea party movement may be onto something. I think its time to show the bastards the door.

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I promise you what I am about to say is true: I don’t take the unpopular side of every issues just to be a douche.

I know that making a statement like that is an odd way to begin a blog post, but we are going to be talking about local politics and specifically Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett and Norman Mayor Cindy Rosenthal, so in light of these circumstances, I felt it might be appropriate. Plus, I am preparing to go on a tirade here of epic proportions and I wont be mincing words, so use of the word “douche” in the first sentence was the most thoughtful way I could think of to fire off the opening salvo.

I should also warn you that this is the scene in my hotel room right now. Well, more specifically: this is the scene as it applies to this post. Yep, thats 190 Proof (95% pure alcohol). Its a generic version of Everclear. In other words, I’m quickly on my way to becoming drunk. Don’t ask me why I am calling a hotel my residence until I find a new place that meets my very particular requirements in Norman. Lets just say the lease on my last place ended on February 28th and I elected not to renew and got lazy about finding a new place.

Anyway, first up is the election results in Norman. Mayor Cindy Rosenthal was re-elected, carrying 53.65% (6,798) of the vote and two spending measures passed as well. 64.72% (8,170) of the voters decided to spend $19 million on roads and infrastructure projects, while 62.07% (7,814)of the voters decided to spend $2.5 million on expanding the warning siren system. I voted against both spending measures and against Mayor Cindy.

I voted against the spending measure because the roads within the city limits of Norman are fine. There is nothing wrong with them. Oklahoma City roads are far worse. I voted against expanding the warning siren system to cover the entire city way out into the boonies of Lake Thunderbird because (and this is another reason I voted against the infrastructure bond, too) while it is something that should be looked at in the future, we are in a recession and money is tight for alot of people. City government should be tightening its belt with the rest of us, not continuing the frivolous spending spree that has gone unchecked in Norman for quite a while. The area that will be served is sparsely populated and because most tornadoes stay on the ground for less than a mile, the risk of a tornado hitting and doing serious damage to many homes (as opposed to one or two or a few homes) is very small. Those who are concerned should buy emergency weather radios (which receive the same signal that the sirens receive to activate and sound an alert locally), not force the cost of government-funded sirens on a struggling population.

I voted against re-electing Cindy Rosenthal because she is a liar. She campaigned on a platform of reducing government waste and making Norman city government efficient. Throughout her time in office, she has consistently reaffirmed this mission and used as her central theme at times. Being fiscally conservative, you might wonder why I have a problem with someone who takes this platform. The reason I opposed her is because she did not follow through. That is, she said one thing while doing another. Last year, she worked to get a $50 million spending measure passed to build a new city library. While I am in favor of education, I believe in delivering education in an educated manner and what Cindy did was just stupid. Less than three miles from The University of Oklahoma, which has one of the state’s largest and best libraries by any measure (size or depth of collections, number of items, computers, resources, hours of operation, staff, etc) she wants to spend $50 million bucks to build a new library to serve the exact same population. This is a massive waste of money. In a flyer supporting the most recent two spending measures, mailed at taxpayer expense (of course) city officials forced their agenda down our throats on these two issues. The fact that these things are even allowed to happen on her watch prove that she is incompetent as a mayor.

Now, we go to the Oklahoma City mayor’s race, where homophobe and parasite Mick Cornett was – according to The Daily Oklahoman – “comfortably re-elected, with 58.3% (14,073) of the vote favoring another term. This really pissed me off because this guy is a complete louse and I cannot understand for the life of me why every queer in the city limits is not out marching in the streets right now. Well, actually I do know why the queers are not doing anything about him, but thats another topic for another day.

For those who think our pal Mick is still an all right guy, lets look at what makes him who he is, shall we?  First off, there is the disturbing little incident which no one seemed to notice except Gossip Boy (its worth noting that this news outlet is really run by a nutcase, but on occasion, even nutcases say things that are relevant and spot on, this was one of those incidents) whereby Cornett tried to pack the library board with anti-gay religious nuts. Perhaps it was an isolated incident, but a look at his connections suggests that this was no mere coincidence.

Mick is tied to organizations that are unfriendly to homosexuals. Mick is not just the mayor, he is also the Executive Vice President of Ackerman McQueen (AM), a powerhouse of an ad agency. AM manages publicity for OPUBCO, which publishes The Oklahoman, also known as America’s worst daily newspaper according to The Columbia Journalism Review. AM also manages public relations for The Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce. What a shock that The Oklahoman, The OKC Chamber of Commerce and Mick all just happened to come out in favor of MAPS 3. AM clients have helped further Mick’s agenda in the past before, for instance Taco Bell (which is owned by Yum Brands – whose public relations are, you guessed it, managed by AM) came out in support of Mick’s This City is Going on a Diet campaign to encourage weight loss. The diet campaign is not a bad thing for the most part, but this level of corporate involvement in politics is rarely a good thing.

MAPS3, well, now thats another matter entirely. Most people are well aware of the fact that I don’t believe in corporate welfare or the abuse of imminent domain. As such, I was mostly opposed to MAPS3, which Mick managed to pass by a narrow margin. I say “mostly opposed” because there was a small nugget of useful, responsible spending on public transportation. However, if I were an Oklahoma City voter, I would have voted against the proposal because spending a few million in a responsible manner in a spending bill that has a pricetag of $777 million and contains reprehensible amounts of pork and corporate welfare is complete and utter bullshit. Just because a  bill has one redeeming aspect does not mean it should be passed, and alot of people voted for this bill solely because of the inclusion of public transit which folks have been clamoring for over the course of many years.

Before Mick became mayor, he used to own a company called Mick Cornett Video Productions, which provided production services to the commercial and legal sectors. He has worked in the media as a reporter, anchorman and manager. He has worked in nearly every aspect of media and he knows how to spin an issue and manipulate people like a master. This is evidenced by the passage of MAPS3, which had lots of opposition, but not enough to stop it. All of these facts come down to this: Mayor Mick Cornett is as slick and as dangerous as they come. His political career needs to be terminated before he makes a run for the governor’s office and wins, bringing his special, seductive brand of homophobia and fiscal irresponsibility to the rest of the state from it’s highest office.

So is there a point to all of this, or am I just trashing Cornett? Yes, there is a point – and I am going to make now and do so directly to my fellow queers. With another four years of Cornett, as sure as the sun will rise in the morning, there will be another MAPS proposal. This time, we should be smart and make sure that we get something out of the deal. By we, I mean us queers. More than anything else, Oklahoma City needs a comprehensive queer community center that serves the needs of the queer community exclusively. That should include not only a center that provides comprehensive programing and services like Tulsa’s Oklahomans for Equality but it should also provide shelter services for homeless and struggling queer youth. You might be surprised to know how many queer youth in this city are homeless or abandoned by their family. Further, the center should provide educational services and job training.

We should must work together and send a message to Cornett that reads as follows:

Dear Mr. Cornett,

You have been re-elected. We’d rather you were not, but you are. We’re going to make the best of it, but we have a condition.

If you want to tax us further for one of your fancy little urban renewal projects, i.e. MAPS4, then you’re going to stop taking our money and spending all of it on amusements for straight rich people in Bricktown. You’re going to spend some of that money helping us, providing basic services that we need to enjoy a quality of life.

We’re tired of you taking our queer money and not providing us basic services. It amounts to taxation without representation. We’re not taking it anymore. Either play ball, or we will shoot down your next project.

Sincerely,

The Oklahoma City Queer Community

Will we rise to the occasion and come together for something that this city desperately needs? Or will we continue to be more interested in doing nothing particularly useful and playing the victim? Time will tell. Cornett’s re-election is bad for us, but we can and should turn it into something useful. Cornett is one of those people that could careless that queer youth live on our streets. As long as he gets his MAPS proposals passed, he is happy damn us all to hell. The only thing he will understand or heed is a direct promise to torpedo his proposals (and by extension, his political career) and then he will play ball.

What If… I Were Hot?

Some of us are hot. Some of us are smart. A very few of us are both hot and smart. I know someone in that last category. I met him a few weeks ago, for obvious reasons, not the least of which is he would kill me if I were to do so. He is hawt as hell, probably one of the most beautiful boys I have ever personally met. I saw some photographs of him and he has one of the most amazing bodies I have ever seen. If I were still shooting porn, I would have immediately gotten out my checkbook to get him in front of my camera.

I wont say his name here (also for obvious reasons) and for many reasons, we are friends quietly and my interaction with him is mostly done under assumed names and aliases. This is necessary because he has appearances to keep up and I am the sort of person who sinks careers and destroys business ventures just by virtue of association. I have spent a fair amount of time talking to him and I enjoy his friendship and conversation. I would be lying if I said I did not find him attractive, but I also know it will only ever will be friendship, for he is married and he and I would never work in that way. In the past, I have been bad about avoiding fucking my friends, so this is an exercise in self control. He is one of the smartest people I know and my knowing him and the conversations we have  as a result have caused no small amount of self reflection.

He is hot and smart and unlike many hot guys (smart or not), he doesn’t flaunt it. He’ll take the compliments and he doesn’t mind the attention and will even bask in it, but he doesn’t feel the need to remind you of the fact that he is hotter than you at every chance. Such an approach to life is refreshing, I must admit. Nothing is worse than somebody who is hot and knows it. So this article is not about me fawning over him or putting him on a pedestal and dressing him up. Its about my self-reflection and musings on the title: what if I were hot?

Everyone has a few things going for them and a few against them. One of the gifts I have is the ability to give myself honest self appraisals. Doing so has lead me to the following determination: I am smart. Not an opinion held by just me, even most of my enemies admit this freely when they are being candid in their thoughts about me. People who like you will often patronize you and tell you what they think you want to hear or what will get them what they want. If you want to know how you are really projecting yourself or how you are come off, then ask someone who hates you. Be prepared, you may not like what you hear, but then again, that’s probably why you are enemies.

But while I am smart, I am enough of a realist to know that I am not hot. Well, there is one truck driver I met at The Finishline from somewhere out in Indiana who thinks I am hot. I got drunk one night really bad and wound up swallowing his cock. I was so drunk that before that night was over, I’d get arrested, have three criminal charges filed against me and wake up in the hospital tied to a bed and being forcibly treated after lapsing into a coma at the county jail. So I have to say that the trucker finding me hot was an isolated incident.

I am not cute – but what if I was? The guy I talked about at the start of this article is hot and smart and he has a wonderful middle class life. Does he have it because of his looks? Do I not have it because of my looks? This is the million dollar question, to be certain. I have wondered about this early and often. He is just as direct and in your face as I am and when he thinks something stinks, he says so. Only he says fuck you with a smile, and I say “fuck you” aloud when the time comes. This is a difference between us, but when you look right at it and compare the way he approaches things and the way I approach stuff, we are not all that different. He is extremely manipulative and self-focused, as am I. We are both focused on money, success and power. Yet with all these similarities, he has the life and I do not. While he will tell you his not rich, he has it going on. He makes money while he sleeps and he can go out on the town every night of the week and not blink. By contrast, I have a half a dozen corporations in bankruptcy and a personal life in disaster.

If I were hot, would I have the kind of life I want? Would I have his life? Sometimes I think it all boils down to looks in our community. Most homosexuals will tell you its not a choice to be gay. I disagree with this, I think for some people it is a choice and I think others they are born that way. But we all know that we cannot control the way we look, at least not without much plastic surgery. In a community that screams for equality because we cannot change who we are, why would I be excluded from the community because of my looks. I know I am slightly more abrupt than he is, which may be what holds me back in life. While he just gives the fuck you smile, I put it into words. Perhaps that subtle difference is what separates us.

Who knows. I am pretty sure that my looks are not the only thing holding me back. There are plenty of popular ugly people in our community. Yet there are also plenty of popular assholes in our community. So what gives? Perhaps I am just cursed. These are the kind of thoughts that keep me up at 2 AM in the morning, watching Logo and Queer as Folk re-runs posting on my blog that no one reads or cares about.

Today is set to be a busy day as I do more errands than I have done all year in a single day. Yet I can’t sleep, I don’t want to sleep and I just want to sit here and be miserable. I want to sit here and think about how my life has been a complete failure. I am keenly aware of the fact that I am 28 years old, in two years my life will be over (as every faggot’s life ends at 30) and while I am doing the things successful fags do, I dont feel it. I don’t feel successful. I am not happy. I am not where I want to be in life. I have no plan to get there. Today should be a good day, for it marks my burial of a hatchet with someone. But I don’t feel it. More than anything, I want a nice, stiff drink. Looks like I am going to be having booze for breakfast – again.

Despite the fact that I have spent more than a thousand words writing about it, I really don’t care. Why should I? I am cursed. I am doomed to suffer in this life. Maybe next time, I will be a cute little faggot that everyone wants.

I write this today in somewhat of a state of bliss. I am high, having taken a few Percocets (please, spare me the bullshit – my life, my body, my right – DEA be damned) which has had the desired effect and taken the edge of these last few insanely stressful days, but I am also sort of out of it. But my mind is clear and I am relaxed. I am taking some down time right now, unwinding from a stressful last few days. I think by the time you are done reading this post, you’ll understand why. I am sitting here watching Logo and reflecting on a lot of things while I answer the occasional e-mail, Facebook comment and such.

So the first thing up on the list is the hospitalization this evening of Kerri Logsdon, a friend and board member of Norman Queer Pride. She is in OU Medical Center tonight in intense pain. The doctors don’t know exactly whats wrong with her, but they are going to do a lot of tests. I took her to the hospital tonight and am now staying at her place to keep an eye on things. Someone came and kicked the door in to the apartment next door, so this will ensure that her place stays safe while she is away.

Kerri has driven me nuts this week, but its not really her fault. Her family life is a mess and I know I am not the most pleasant person to be around when I am hurting. She is just lonely but unfortunately, having someone around who wants to go on and on about their medical problems really brings me down. None the less, since no one else is there for her and I don’t have anything better to do (actually, I do…) I may as well try to ease someone else’s suffering even if only by a little bit. What goes around comes around, so I figure that if I do this good turn, maybe someone will be there for me when  I need it. So I am happy to do it, but also glad I have a break now. I hope Kerri feels better and gets some relief, she is not a bad person to be around.

In other news, I am expecting a settlement check today for a lawsuit against a company I used to have a warehousing contract with. Their insurance company decided to settle and they finally got around to mailing the check a couple of days ago from Phoenix, so I expect it will arrive at my attorney’s office today. Nevermind that according to the terms of our agreement, the check was to be sent via FedEx and was supposed to be in the mail like two weeks ago, so this insurance company apparently just decided to do what they felt like doing. I feel sorry for the opposing counsel, John Walkup of The Edmonds Cole Law Firm in Oklahoma City. He is stuck in the middle of the whole thing and helpless as much as anyone else. I think he is sincere in his efforts and while I am not a patient person when money is concerned, I remind myself that its indecent to hold someone in Oklahoma City responsible for the actions of some twit for a claims adjuster at an insurance company in Phoenix.

But all is well that ends well, so now I am deciding where to put the money to work for me. I did get a bit more than I expected, so I am reminded of my civic obligations to help others when I am able to do so. To that end, I think I am going to make some charitable donations with some of the funds, and I have decided I am going to start by giving $100 to RAIN of Oklahoma, which provides HIV testing services with no cost or obligation. While I disagree with some of the things the organization has done recently, I am not going to be petty. The mission is worthy of support.

I have already donated $200 to Mike McKee, my attorney who handled the case. He was only going to take $700 for his services, I told him to go ahead and take $900. Mike is from a different time, a time when people became lawyers to serve their communities and help others, not to get filthy rich. Mike and I have many viewpoints that are worlds apart on topics like religion and politics, but I have a great amount of respect for the man. He works tirelessly for his clients and in this case, he is giving me a very fair shake.

A third donation is going to be made in the way of a loan to a guy in Oklahoma City I know. While he is not gay, he is still part of our community and has had a string of bad luck. Without going into details, he has been out of work and his landlord told him he could work around the complex doing make readies and such in exchange for free rent. He did a bunch of work, but didn’t get it in writing, and so when the rent came due, the landlord took $100 off the rent, which was not the deal. Then the jackass posted an eviction notice. So I am gonna loan the guy about $550 to help him get on his feet. He says he’ll pay me back and while I believe he is sincere, I dont know the guy that well so I am considering it a donation until proven otherwise. I do expect it back, but I’m not counting on it.

Other, smaller donations will be going to causes that I have long supported including The National Association of Railroad Passengers, The American Motors Owners Association, Earth Island Institute and The Fully Informed Jury Association. I will probably also find some funding for Americans United for Separation of Church and State and Oklahomans for Equality. Its one thing to sit around and bitch about the direction our country is taking, but if you aren’t willing to put your money where your mouth is, then there is not really any point, is there?

In other news, I have launched three new blogs to cover specific aspects of my life. I created a blog to cover and provide updates on the License Plate Lawsuit. You may want to bookmark that page if you wish to follow the case. I opened a second blog to be dedicated to my love of travel, called Traveling with Keith. Few people know about my hobby of screen writing, but the other night I fired up Final Draft and cranked out a few pages of script that maybe one day will turn into something marketable. The name of that blog is Keith Silver Screen. I haven’t done anything with it yet, but I will sometime soon.

I am looking forward to buying an iPhone and dumping Cricket’s lousy service. While I don’t miss having a $200 a month cell phone bill for unlimited everything, I do miss having unlimited everything. And while I hate AT&T with a passion, I hate Sprint even worse. In fact, look for the announcement soon: I will be filing a small claims lawsuit against Sprint for the manner in which they fucked me over on my account. Plus, I am starting to become a real fan of Apple stuff, and for many years I was about as anti-Mac as they come.

I really like the idea of Apple’s MobileMe service, which allows you to use a computing cloud to have ONE address book, calendar and so on that updates itself without having to plug in dongles and such. For instance, you add an appointment on your iPhone while in the field, then you come home to your MacBook and the thing is already there without having to plug in and sync. Yes, I know you can sync Outlook on Windows, but Windows sucks and Outlook is such a piece of shit (its full of security holes) that I refuse to install. As if that weren’t enough, to have Outlook you have to buy Microsoft Office which is not something I’ll be doing. Not when I can use the freely available OpenOffice which is every bit as good and comes with the low, low price of free. Of course, this does require me to make my next computer a Mac as well, which I think I will be doing. In fact, I really like the new iMacs with their big, beautiful and bright displays. I’ll wait to see what the verdict is on the iPad before I ditch my Toshiba in favor of a MacBook or iPad, as the Toshiba still has a lot of life left in it.

Being as how I have been up for damn near an entire day now, its time to wrap this up. So I will close with a brief talk about my longing for Chicago. More specifically, an adventure that possibly awaits me next time I go there.You see, I have never been able to stay away from Chicago for very long. For me, the windy city will always be my true home. No matter where I go or how long I stay, I am still only visiting. Home is where the heart is and my heart always belongs in Chicago and its memories.

Anyway, the adventure I speak of is as follows: there is a guy who now lives there and works at a gay bar, but he once lived here in Oklahoma. I like him, not necessarily as a boyfriend – but I haven’t ruled that out. I am not going to identify him, but those who know me know that I like them barely legal. This guy is in his mid 30s and has gray hair, which for anyone who knows me and what I like is probably reading this in utter shock. While I do find him attractive, its not his body that I am drawn to. He has an aurora of mystery about him that really intrigues me. He is very shy despite working in a job that puts him in a position to deal extensively with the public. I think he isolates the personal him from the professional him. He is a deep thinker and extremely intelligent, with a vivid imagination capable of painting very thought-provoking pictures in the mind. I have had occasion to read some of his short stories and thats how I know this. He is well read, can hold an intelligent conversation that keeps me on my toes.

His writings do seem to indicate low self esteem as he is always beating up on himself. He seems to feel unwanted. I do admit that I dont know much about him, I only met him a couple of times while he lived here and he does not remember me, but I remembered him. He has been single for quite some time and I think its likely that he has been hurt before, probably very badly. I must say with what I know of him thus far, he is the partner of my dreams. Smart, intelligent, witty and good looking in a way that generates appreciation and respect instead of someone who is just hot in a “piece of meat” sort of way. I don’t think he has any idea just what a wonderful person he is, though, of course I need to get to know him much better before I can say this is the way of it. I am speaking purely based on what I have found out about him thus far.

Someday soon, I will find my way to Chicago for yet another visit. I talk to this guy online occasionally. He has said he’ll let me buy him a cup of coffee if I find myself in town. But where, if anywhere, does it go beyond that? Do I want it to go beyond that? These are the things that I have been thinking about. I have a habit of scaring people away and this is one that – if I decided to pursue him – would be worth keeping. I can tell that if I was his and he mine, he would be a loyal companion who would be in it for keeps.

The only question that remains is how do I explore the possibilities without scaring him away. The plate case ensures that I am going to be living in Oklahoma for quite a while as the case winds its way through the courts here. Perhaps thats a good thing for this situation, it will force me to take it slow and steady, which is whats going to be needed here for sure.

So this past Friday, I appeared on The American Heathen Radio Network’s talk show. We had a great time talking about the issues, and we also made an announcement. There is going to be a second lawsuit regarding vanity plates in Oklahoma in the near future. The host of the show, RJ Evans has previously been granted a tag reading “ATHEIST” by the OTC. However, the OTC has in the past denied the tag “GODLESS”. Evans is going to apply for the GODLESS tag later this week and when it is denied, bring suit against the OTC for the improper denial.

This is particularly disturbing (while at the same time being quite amusing) because it shows the highly subjective manner in which the OTC grants and denies tags. Simply put: the manner in which the OTC adjudicates applications is both arbitrary and capricious. Atheist means godless. The idea that the word atheist is not offensive but godless is offensive is pure poppycock. Whats more, it shows that the OTC is not even consistent in denying one side of a single issue the right to speak. While they have (as far as I know) kept all the gays from getting plates that could express their gayness, they clearly haven’t done the same for the atheists. No doubt, they’ll claim that this was another one of those plates that “slipped through”, but its been issued for over three years. As the Administrative Law Judge pointed out in the administrative hearings phase of the protest, each year a plate is renewed was an opportunity to deny such renewal and correct any plates that had “slipped through” and the OTC, in all of the examples that were considered at the hearing, elected not to do so.

So now we have the two biggest hot button issues in on this fight. We have religion and we have homosexuality. As RJ has astutely pointed out, this a separation of church and state issue as much as its a free speech and gay rights issue. We have a government agency which has claimed for itself the right to exclude certain people from the conversation that is taking place on about 56,000 vanity plates in the state based on criteria that is neither written nor specific. Who gets and plate and doesn’t get a plate is up to the personal prejudices of the individual encoder examining the application. When you let some people on one side of an issue talk and deny that right to others, its viewpoint-based discrimination. In Cimarron Alliance v. City of Oklahoma City, Ok, 290 F.Supp.2d 1252 (W.D. Okl., 2002), the federal Courts took a definitive stand against viewpoint-based discrimination.

While this started out being about me getting a license plate I wanted to express myself, it has quickly become about so much more. Its no longer just about me or my plate and its not even about gay rights. While all of these are components and motivating factors, This is about free speech and separation of church and state. Two of the most fundamental rights we as citizens of the United States hold to be of paramount importance. If the Oklahoma Tax Commission gets away with its conduct in this case, this signals a huge change in our rights. It will be the dawn of a new era in which the 1st amendment is void where prohibited, restricted or taxed by law or administrative rule. This case will set precedent and change the direction of free speech in this country.

I have been crazy busy these last few days to my regret, have not really had time to keep up with local news.  Whats up with Jim Pope? Well, our Republican friends did a great job of summarizing his accomplishments. Tim Pope was an enemy of the people. He worked to undermine equality. As a human being who gives a shit about this kind of stuff, I am glad he is dead. I hope they dig the hole post haste and plant him deep so that he can begin making the world a better place post-death (something he failed to do while he was alive) by fertilizing a cemetery plot.

Well, I expected that the local Oklahoma City-based media would pay attention to the lawsuit I filed against The Oklahoma Tax Commission. I figured some outlets from around Oklahoma would also pay attention. I even thought that I might get a few “Attaboy!”s from a few concerned homos across state lines. But I did not expect CNN to call me about Nancy Grace possibly being interested in the case nor did I expect celebrity gossip blog Dlisted to turn the case into a referendum on my fashion choices by naming me “Hot Slut of the Day”. But all of those things have happened today, and many others.

Something else has happened as well. I have received dozens of communications from folks telling me what kinds of plates they have seen around or had issued to them. Its become a discussion about license plates and the phenomenon. I am convinced now – more than at any other point in this whole fiasco – that the OTC has lost this case. They may as well tape all applications up on the wall and throw darts at them to decide who gets a plate and who doesn’t. Its all based on, well, who knows what its based on. I don’t even think they know.

Here are two observations from those communications:

  • A fellow Norman resident called to tell me they granted his tag “ATHEIST”. Odd, since they have denied “GODLESS” and others. So not only do they engage in viewpoint-based discrimination, they are not even consistent in their discrimination within a single topic.
  • From a comment on the News 9 Story: “I don’t see anything wrong with the tag. There is a guy in Norman that has a tag that reads NOFTCHX. Which means NO FAT CHICKS, he can have that but an outwardly gay man can’t have an IM GAY tag. Get real people whatever happened to freedom of speech???”

Oh, and last – but certainly not least – there is this:

Media coverage in the case has apparently reached a nationwide level already, as I have some lonely, single (presumably, gay) guy who thinks I am cute and wants to get to know me in a really hurry. He is 22 years old, works at Sams Club and is from some town I have never heard of in New York. He found my cell number somewhere (probably the damned press release) and started texting me telling me he wanted to be friends on Facebook. I approved the friend request he sent and he immediately started chatting me up.

I was on the phone with a reporter when all this happened, so I had to ask him to stop messaging me on my Facebook chat like a dozen times so I could concentrate on my call and not sound like a stuttering idiot to the reporter on the other end who was trying to get me to come on his radio show (which I will be appearing on this Friday from 7 to 10 PM, I am sitting on the entire show). He would stop for about a minute and then start back in and ask me if I am still there and such. He was half groveling and half worshiping me, while asking what I thought of him looks wise.

It was a bit over the top and I finally snapped and swore at him out of frustration (and immediately felt bad for doing it, how was he supposed to know I am not a patient person) and told him I was looking for the block button on Facebook. He asked why and I told him, point blank: he was annoying the hell out of me. He then freaked out and begged for forgiveness and for me not to block him. It was at this point that I realized a measure of humility was needed here.

Honestly, I felt sorry for the guy. Clearly, he was happy to have found a friend. He doesn’t have many on Facebook and I wonder if I am the only gay guy he knows or who will talk to him. The world is a cruel place for a homosexual when you are all alone. Even when you are around folks who understand and support you, its not much less cruel. Some of the things being said about me in the comments sections of various news sites are completely uncalled for. There are areas of New York that are every bit as conservative as Oklahoma, so I can understand and appreciate some of what he is facing. Hell, I was there not so long ago.

I don’t know his situation, but I’ll try to find out and help if I can. He’s offline now and the reporter is off the phone. I just hope he doesn’t kill himself or something. He did strike me as perhaps a little unbalanced and/or desperate for human contact and he said something about him having ADHD. The way society treats gay people, its a wonder that they manage to survive at all, much less some of them become truly awesome. Bigot Sally Kern once made light of how gay kids have high suicide rates. I wonder if it ever occurred to her that maybe thats the case because society – led by people like her – so often treat these people like utter trash to the point that they as human beings just shut down and lose all desire and reason for living.

Overall, I feel very good about where this case is headed. The media is covering this story fairly and accurately, which surprises me a little bit. I figured we’d have some outlet come out with a hatchet job of a story, spun around to fit some biased viewpoint. But they don’t seem to be doing that. The Oklahoman ran a factual story, followed closely by The Associated Press’s take on it. I take that in and of itself as a sign of progress. We’re going to open some doors in Oklahoma with this one. Now, some folks are not going to want them opened, but they will be opened none the less.

I say all this is all a good thing. We’re moving forward. Attitudes are changing here.