Michelangelo Signorile is annoying. If you've listened to his radio show at all, you're likely nodding right about now. He talks far too slowly, takes too long to get to the point, has trouble phrasing his thoughts cohesively and lately has been far too pleased with his own words. The worst thing though, is that he repeats himself over and over. Over and over. He repeats himself over and over.
I realize it must be difficult to fill several hours 5 days a week with content, but that is the job description. Maybe he should TAKE MORE CALLS! So often when I listen to his show I get the distinct feeling that he's caught up in the love he feels for the words he's so clumsily crafted. I think he's not taking calls because it will interrupt the flow of his thought process. Not good for a talk show host.
Still, I enjoy his show, mostly for the topics rather than him, but I do have to regulate him now, turning him off every few minutes to take a breather. Anytime he gets together with Barney Frank, however, I stay tuned. I found these two snippets from one of his latest chats with Frank online - http://www.queerty.com/?p=83812. Frank is at his most belligerent and surprisingly, Signorile is forced to concede on more than one occasion. That's not the most common things to happen to Signorile during his shows. He made a shift late last year and joined the "bash Obama for all our troubles" bandwagon, changing his common sense sort of delivery to a more brusque, self reliant sense of right and wrong. Considering the wrath that's been hurled at Barney Frank since he made comments about the National March last year, it's refreshing to listen to him stand his ground and especially to hear Signorile chuckle slightly when he's forced to concede to the logic and reason of Frank's dialogue.
So Signorile has fallen onto the path that seems to be quite popular with a lot of LGBT Americans and especially activists, at our current point in the struggle. Blame Obama for everything and demand he come out screaming until everyone lies in his wake and is forced to comply with his every demand. The first, of course, being to overturn every wrong that is not levied against all LGBT Americans. Forget the truth, which is that the President doesn't exactly have that kind of power, and if he did, Congress still has power to reign him in. Forget the way the government works, the way the system works and the majority of Americans who still oppose our equal rights. Forget all that and do one thing and one thing only. Blame Obama for everything.
This latest tactic, which is nothing more than that, nothing more than a decided point of contention for the "LGBT Group" to latch onto and spread like wildfire, is poorly thought out, poorly strategized and tragically executed. Of course Obama isn't to blame for our lack of rights, and of course he can't just wave a magic wand. Is it going slower than we all expected, given Obama's words during the campaign? Of course. To say that translates to "blame Obama for everything" however, shows how little this movement is willing to follow the path that might work, as opposed to the path their egos have decided will make things easier.
Barney Frank is the other fascinating piece of this conversation. Seems you either love him or hate him. That's not a new thing, actually. Frank has been delivering his take no prisoners and tell it like it is speech long before the last couple of years. He's abrupt, cocky and dismissive. For many, many years he's been both hailed and condemned. Anyone listening to Frank has no choice but to admit that his sort of delivery is rare among politicians. Agree or not, you don't often hear the kind of blunt honesty that Frank continues to provide.
But Frank made some comments last year about the National March and a portion of the LGBT community, mostly activists, and mostly those who live, breathe and operate through their life sustaining yet brief postings on Twitter or Facebook, chose to do what they do best, to form instantaneous opinions about a person then spread it passionately, as if they'd actually taken time to reach a conclusion about the pieces of the facts at hand. Take the time to consider the context? Listen to the whole interview? Think about the circumstances in which the words were spoken? Consider whether it's relevant, personal or important? No, no, no, no, no and no. Just decide whether the person making the statement should be labeled good or evil based on one factor and one factor only, which one is more beneficial politically to whatever organized group you might be involved with. And so it has been with Frank and a vocal portion of the LGBT community ever since.
In the noted audio pieces, Frank once again shouts about what so many LGBT Americans and activists have decided they don't want to hear... which tactics work best to move equal rights forward. Frank has remained consistent in his advice to LGBT Americans. Lobby. Lobbyists are very influential in Congress and successful at getting any number of items through which will benefit their particular interest.
Of course lobbying for us can prove difficult, given our relatively small numbers. Still, if that's the way it works in Washington, to form a strong lobby that works daily to nudge Congress in the right direction, why aren't all these groups who spend endless upon endless months "brainstorming" what to do next...why aren't they coming up with this option as a choice? If the past is any indication, the last thing we need is more brainstorming only to come up with another weak, easy to pull off approach.
The recent call for LGBT Americans to boycott donations to politicians, particularly the Democratic party, at least until we get our way, seems to be another tactic not very well thought through. After all, at this point it's fairly difficult to deny that money is the primary motivator for politicians. So at a time when we're not only losing up and running campaigns but also watching successful rights efforts later stripped away by voters, it seems a bit confusing to suggest that we remove ourselves from the way the game is played for virtually all other interests in this country. How about instead of boycotting money for Washington, we start to funnel the millions of dollars being spent for rallies and marches and boycotts into Washington, in a calculated, planned attack on Congress through strong lobbying?
Barney and others really do speak the truth when they say a large portion of LGBT Americans have now decided to sit in the corner like spoiled children until they get their way, which of course makes no sense historically in a civil rights battle.