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Equal Rights March 2009 Equal Rights March 2009b

Equal Rights Marchd

My friend Marilyn and I hooked up with my son Jeremy and his partner Bryan and joined fellow walkers who circled the blocks near the White House and then headed down 12th Street toward the Capitol for the national Equality March today.

We stood or walked in the march for about an hour and a half.  It was wall to wall people and everyone was in such good spirits.  Marilyn and I took shade and shelter at the Old Ebbitt and a half hour later the rest of the colorful procession was still walking by.  The front end of the marchers extended at least six to eight city street blocks ahead of us as well.  

Luckily, I had my picture taken with Martina Navratilova and shook hands with (1st Lt) Dan Choi, who was a primary speaker.

This is the third major gay rights march at DC, with the last being held in the early 90’s.   GLBT folks have been in town all week for meetings and lobbying with Congress and administration leaders.

I am so proud of my son and his partner and so glad I could be a part of the event.  We were marching along with a group of folks from DC who call themselves DC Partners, made up of Gay and Lesbian couples.

It was such a joyful day.

And everyone was happy to have heard of Obama’s speech Saturday evening at the Human Rights Campaign Dinner in which he pledged to end the military “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, noting that legislation to do so is pending in Congress.

“We should not be punishing patriotic Americans who have stepped forward to serve this country. We should be celebrating their willingness to show such courage and selflessness on behalf of their fellow citizens, especially when we are fighting two wars,” Obama said to sustained cheers.

“I will end Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, that’s my commitment.”  Source: Chicago Sun-Times.

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Joan of Arc

I know this now. Every man gives his life for what he believes. Every woman gives her life for what she believes. Sometimes people believe in little or nothing yet they give their lives to that little or nothing. One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. And then it is gone. But to sacrifice what you are and live without belief, that's more terrible than dying.--

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Beannacht

On the day when
the weight deadens
on your shoulders
and you stumble,
may the clay dance
to balance you.

And when your eyes
freeze behind
the grey window
and the ghost of loss
gets in to you,
may a flock of colours,
indigo, red, green,
and azure blue
come to awaken in you
a meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
in the currach of thought
and a stain of ocean
blackens beneath you,
may there come across the waters
a path of yellow moonlight
to bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
may the clarity of light be yours,
may the fluency of the ocean be yours,
may the protection of the ancestors be yours.
And so may a slow
wind work these words
of love around you,
an invisible cloak
to mind your life.

John O'Donohue, Echoes of Memory