U.S. Politics From a Distance

As America continues to rejoice in election of Barack Obama -- while gay Californians lament the passing of Prop. 8 -- overseas, political activists look on from a distance. Zachery Scott has watched the drama following Election Day unfold as he serves in the Peace Corps in Mozambique.

BY Zachery Scott

November 28 2008 1:00 AM ET

 Zachery Scott x100 (courtesy) | Advocate.com

Having been
raised in South Carolina, where I also attended university,
I became used to having to protest anytime the LGBT
community was under attack -- which unfortunately was
quite frequent.

However, when I
moved to Los Angeles, I was amazed at how comfortable gay
people were. Having carved out their niche in the various
neighborhoods, they had built up strength and
protection so that most local politicians
wouldn’t be caught dead saying any thing against the
gay community.

But I also
noticed that many LGBT people sometimes forgot what it was
like elsewhere in the country -- not to mention the state --
for gays, lesbians, and transgender individuals. Many
in our community had gotten too comfortable in their
bubble of Los Angeles or West Hollywood and forgot
that there is still work to be done in progressing an agenda
of equality.

I’ll admit
that I was one of those people who left my activist feelings
at college in return for a calmer life consumed with more
pleasant everyday issues.

In turn, we
forgot that you can’t take traditionally liberal
votes for granted. That every political interaction on
our part, in this case with African-Americans or
Hispanics, needs to also be a teaching opportunity on
issues important to us.

Tags: Politics

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