Yesterday afternoon I rolled up to the historic Brennan House downtown for a Meet The Candidates event hosted by CFAIR, the Committee for Fairness and Individual Rights. It's the PAC for the Fairness Campaign and I was invited to attend.
I was rousted out of a sound sleep earlier that morning to round up the wine and sodas for the event. After taking one and a half hours of my day doing it and depositing everything at the Fairness Campaign office on Frankfort Ave I returned home to finish my NE Trans Pride March speech and e-mail it to Bet Power so the ASL interpreters could get to work on it.
The event wasn't starting until 5 PM, and I arrived at 5:45 PM in my black pantsuit. Joanne Lynch greeted me with "Our saviour is here!" a humorous reference to my earlier efforts that morning hitting three separate spread out stores for the wine, the multiple two liter sodas, the humongous bag of ice and saving CFAIR some cash in the process. I jokingly said as I hugged her and entered the Brennan House, "I'm not a saviour. I can't walk on water."
By the time I entered the three story Victorian home several of the CFAIR endorsees were there. Metro council members George Unseld (yes, he's the brother of NBA Hall of Famer Wes Unseld) and Rick Blackwell were there along with Metro council candidate Kungu Njuguna.
I was impressed by my Kenyan descended brother. He was born in the States and is a city attorney who prosecuted violations of Louisville's Human Rights ordnance. He's running in AC's district (the 18th) in the Hurstbourne Parkway/Taylorsville Rd. area. Shelley Santry, who's running in a judicial race was also there to thank CFAIR for the endorsement and chat with us for a few moments before jetting off to another event.
A few minutes after I arrived my state rep Mary Lou Marzian showed up and showed us some love. I also got a hug from former metro council member Denise Bentley, who's looking good these days. I noted and mentioned to her that she's dropped a little weight, even though she didn't think so. I also ran into Dr. Story and Jaison Gardiner for the second time in 24 hours as well along with Mark England, who hosted the recent Derby benefit that was the day before my birthday. Dawn popped in after she got off work.
Since I drove, I wasn't partaking in any of the wine and stuck to the soda. The Louisville po-po's have been on the prowl lately pre and post Derby and I was in no mood to spend the night at the Jefferson County Hilton. I hung around chatting with many of the peeps who did show up like Christine and the gang from Sienna, our local transgender organization.
Christine's the prez of the group and congratulated me for my upcoming speaking slot at the NE Pride March. I told her I'd try to make a future Sienna meeting if it didn't conflict with what I had going on. Mark England also chatted with me for a few minutes and asked if I'd seen the photo I took with him and Russ at the Derby benefit. When I replied no, he asked for my e-mail address, input it into his PDA and sent it to me a few hours later.
I'd left my Obama button at home, and a young LGBT Hillary supporter approached me about supporting his candidate. I politely listened to his spiel before I told him I was supporting Senator Obama. When he mentioned that HRC endorsed Senator Clinton, I politely shot back,"That's a major reason why I'm supporting Sen. Obama."
That triggered a lively back and forth conversation in which every time he spouted a pro-Hillary talking point, I had an answer for it. I also pointed out that I'd sat across the table from numerous meetings/confrontations with HRC personnel over the last ten years and had a long, ugly history with them.
When he tried to claim that Obama hadn't stood up for GLBT peeps as an Illinois senator, I told him I had friends and relatives in Chicago who said otherwise. After a few minutes of amusing myself with him, I told him that on this subject we'd agree to disagree and I was still voting for Obama on Tuesday as Joanne and Jeff Rodgers grinned at me.
For you GLBT peeps that still believe that BS like my young friend, here's a quote from a Windy City News February 11, 2004 interview that y'all need to pay attention to.
We must be careful to keep our eyes on the prize-equal rights for every American. We must continue to fight for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. We must vigorously expand hate-crimes legislation and be vigilant about how these laws are enforced. We must continue to expand adoption rights and make them consistent and seamless throughout all 50 states, and we must repeal the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" military policy.
Just an FYI GLBT Hillary lovers, the Windy City Times is a GLBT publication. At the time he was quoted in this interview he was an Illinois state senator a few months away from making the historic keynote speech at the 2004 Democratic convention that catapulted him to national recognition.
Not long after that the event wound to a close. After we helped the staff put the tables and chairs up, I took a quick tour through the lovely Victorian era home before exiting the place and heading back home to Crescent Hill.