|Annise Parker won re-election as Houston's mayor|
In addition to the embarrassment suffered last night by the National Organization for Marriage, there is also more excellent news to report.
A large number of gay candidates were elected to public office last night. According to the Victory Fund:
Houston - Houston voters have returned Mayor Annise Parker to office without a runoff election, giving her nearly 51% of the vote in a general election tonight that featured five opponents. Parker, an out lesbian, was first elected in 2009 and will be able to run for one more 2-year term in 2013. Voters in the new city council District J chose Mike Laster to represent them. Laster becomes the first openly gay man elected to the Houston City Council.
Montana - Caitlin Copple, an out lesbian who was endorsed by the Victory Fund, has won her race for the Missoula, Montana, city council, defeating an incumbent who voted against an LGBT non-discrimination ordinance.
Cincinnati - Chris Seelbach has won his race for the Cincinnati, Ohio City Council. He becomes the first openly LGBT council member in the city’s history.
New Jersey - Bruce Harris was elected mayor of Chatham Borough, N.J. He’s likely the nation’s first openly gay, African American, Republican mayor. Mayor Tim Eustace of Maywood, N.J., has been elected to the New Jersey Assembly tonight, becoming the first openly gay non-incumbent to win a seat in the legislature. Eustace will join Assemblymember Reed Gusciora, who won his reelection bid, as New Jersey’s only openly gay state lawmakers.
Minnesota - Mary Doran has been elected to the School Board in St. Paul, Minn.
Connecticut - Pedro Segarra easily retains his post as mayor of Hartford, Conn. His main opponents dropped out of the race earlier this year.
Indiana - Zach Adamson has won his race for city council in Indianapolis, giving the city its first openly LGBT city council member.
Florida - An incumbent on the Largo, Fla., City Commission who attacked her openly gay opponent over his sexual orientation has lost her reelection bid to him tonight. Michael Smith defeated Mary Gray Black, who has a history of anti-gay and anti-trans activism on the commission.
In addition, word has come that Daniel Hernandez, the intern whose actions saved Congresswoman Gabby Gifford after that awful shooting earlier this year, won a seat on Arizona's Sunnyside Unified School District governing board, with 61.8 percent of the vote.
Of course none of these candidates won because of their sexual orientation and it would be insulting to think of them as solely "the gay candidates."
But to ignore what their victories mean to the community and the nation at large would be even more insulting.
They prove that while the lgbtq community still has a hard road to trod, we are walking it rather nicely and all of the lies, slander, and hate done under the guise of religious beliefs can't stop us if we don't let it.
The world is changing, regardless of how some folks on the right feel about it. Lgbtqs are no longer hypothetical. We are no longer being seen as abstract pieces in religious arguments. We are real people who lead families, pay taxes, have normal lives, and - as seen by last night - are elected to public office.
Deal with it. And if you can't, that's YOUR problem.