THE CLOSET WAS SELF MADE:

2 Jul

The headlines this morning were uniquely placed in the days edition of The Express, DC’s only surviving free daily paper. One headline called out the projected cost of Gay Marriage challenges expected in the blush of the Supreme Court decision, hundreds of millions, the blurb read. The OTHER headline was empathetic to the burdensome doubling of college loans towards the purpose of picking up Obamacare shortfall. Hundreds of millions from adults whose case hung on the repeated refrain of “FOR THE CHILDREN.” Well, what about the children of yesterday who took at faith promises of the American Dream.

 We school our children to think outside the box. We do our best to infuse them with the skills to stand out and be proud. I don’t recall there ever being a differentiation of proud being limited to any gender or life choice. I do recall being proud targeting esteem and confidence.

In my years of covering news, I covered all types of events, all types of cultures, all types of places and yes, all types of OMG moments like bears on trucks rolling down P Street in NW DC. It was a picture. I easily could look past debauchery of any type, everywhere. That is the skill of a photographer not becoming the moment.

It was the quiet moments that would make me stop and pause. The transgender cop I met at a conference when my eldest, years back, lay in the hospital escaping death narrowly. The officer made the ugliest woman with 5 o’clock shadow that I ever met, colored in brightness women don’t normally wear, I shared with him. But who was I to tell him he looked giggles. To him, he was confident and proud. No. He didn’t walk to anyone and tell them they had to like him or accept him. Thing is, he liked himself. So I liked him.

There was the round and rubenesque man sheathed in leopard, rouge tickling his beard growth, he confided, that needed to be dealt with 5 times a day. We talked. Openly. Honestly. He said he felt beautiful as a woman. I laughed sharing he clearly did not have what it took to be a woman. Most women are overridden in angst, lacking confidence, noting the confidence he walked with in heels over cobblestone dusted with grass. He confided he didn’t walk this way dressed as a man. He confided he lacked confidence.

At the last HRC Gala I covered in DC, one of my colleagues, asked why I was there noting I was not L, G, B or T. I grinned. I am me. I love taking photos, besides the HRC swag was always the best with superstars whose photos flipped many times over. Then he told me something to which I kept repeating, don’t mess with me…. He said Justice Kennedy is gay waiting to come out of the closet until he retires.

Maybe I am still a turnip truck survivor, the usual joke about someone who is dumb and lovable… well, naïve. He said he didn’t know why. He said the gay community knew. Maybe the world needs to know, maybe that is one of the questions that should be obligatory to answer during the Grip &  Greets on Capitol Hill, after all it is PC to ask about someone’s spouse or children. If it is about truth then why was it not ok for Elena Kagan to point to her partner in the first row, or Justice Sotomayor applauded for being direct and honest just come out and be truthful. After all, if a SCOTUS justice isnt telling their truth, then really, what shape is America in OR as America is learning, what is America being shaped in to.

The Closet, well, I think people make it themselves and open and shut the closet door to their convenience. It was no secret Anderson Cooper was told to button up about his sexuality by CNN. It was common talk amongst colleagues sorta like the only person that doesn’t know the sexuality of THAT actor is the actor himself. Anderson came out of the closet when it was convenient. People liked him then and still. So the closet? Something that if someone hides in, then, isnt that called a fraud and isnt that grounds for revisiting nominations…. to the SCOTUS bench right off of it because if a Justice lies to the American people then how can the American people be… or is it time for Americans, themselves, to step out of the closet….. anyone can go in. Anyone can come out…. Come out America. Stand up and be proud. Ask the questions. The only thing that makes them tough is…you. Maybe all this money being spent at the cost of kids college paydown, might not be….

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