Leaving the United States of Medieval
BY Charles Karel Bouley II
October 07 2004 12:00 AM ET
On Friday, October 8, a group of gay do-gooders has decided, all gays and lesbians should drop out of the economy for a day to show our unity, to empower us as a community, to show the impact we have on the economy. Gay businesses have been urged to close for the day, and all gays and lesbians are asked to not spend any money at all.Oh, and we’re each supposed to withdraw $80 from our local ATMs to handicap straight America’s access to cash for the Columbus Day weekend.Why? Well, according to Dale Duncan’s Advocate.com editorial, the reasons are noble:“Because we can be fired in 36 states just for being gay, we must unify,” he writes.“Because our president wants to write discrimination into the Constitution of the United States, we must unify. “Because numerous states will vote this November on whether to ban same-sex marriage in their constitutions, we must unify. “Because many right-wing organizations across the United States use our issues to raise money for causes antithetical to our well-being, we must unify.”Well, all of those things are true. But how, pray tell, does dropping out of the economy for one day solve any of them?It doesn’t. In fact, it stands to make a small-s statement while potentially hurting some gay business owners by eroding their monthly revenue. It’s a Friday, so for a nightclub or gay restaurant, even if they defy the boycott and stay open, receipts could suffer substantially.But my problem with the Boycott for Equality is not that it’s absolutely useless and will show those mean straight people nothing at all; it’s that it doesn’t go nearly far enough.For years now I have pushed for a class-action lawsuit against the federal government that demands tax-exempt status for gays and lesbians based on taxation without representation. We are discriminated against federally--Defense of Marriage Act, anyone?--and therefore should not have to support the government until it supports us.But even that may not go far enough. No, given Louisiana’s recent bigoted vote to amend their state constitution to discriminate against same-sex couples, with 11 other states poised to do the same, it’s time to get a big gay caravan going.Let’s take Louisiana, the sixth fattest state in the land, according to the CDC’s Obesity Trends report, and the 46th smartest, based on 21 factors, from Morgan Quitno’s annual reference book, Education State Rankings, 2004-2005 (with Mississippi, Arizona, Nevada, and New Mexico rounding out the dumbest of the dumb in America). These large, undereducated folks found a way to waddle to the polls right after being deluged by a hurricane to make sure them fags and dykes couldn’t get married.This is the same state that derives millions of dollars in revenue from the debaucheries that are Mardi Gras, Southern Decadence, etc. It’s home to the Big Easy, a city of sin on a par with Babylon. This bastion of morality has decided that gays and lesbians shouldn’t get married. So, should we boycott Louisiana, following the lead of the Boycott for Equality?Nope, we should leave.