A Good Week For Gays

Flickr/<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidortez/">David Ortez</a> (<a href="http://www.creativecommons.org" target="_blank">Creative Commons</a>).

Last week, three openly gay people rose to positions of public prominence. A quick rundown:

1. Houston (yes, the one in Texas) became the largest city in the US to elect an openly gay mayor. Annise Parker defeated Gene Locke with 53 percent of the vote. I wrote a blog about their runoff, which featured a bit of anti-gay fuss from pastors and social conservatives.

2.  In Los Angeles, Rev. Mary Glasspool became the second openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church and the world Anglican fellowship. Her ascendancy follows Episcopal leaders’ decision to lift a de facto ban on the ordination of gay bishops in July. The first openly gay bishop was Gene Robinson, whose 2003 election in New Hampshire caused a rift in the church. More talk of a split has come up around the decision to ordain Glasspool.

3.  Last but not least, the California Assembly picked its first openly gay speaker, John Pérez, on Thursday. Assembly Democrats unanimously backed Pérez, who was elected to the Assembly last year and also happens to be a cousin of Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

So what do you think, MoJo readers? Does it matter? Will all of this make any difference next year, when landmark decisions about gay marriage and “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” are supposed to be made? While you’re thinking, help yourself to a selection of related video clips below.

AP news clip on the election of Annise Parker:


Bishops Suffragan Mary Glasspool and Diana Bruce:


John Pérez responds to support from Assembly Democrats:


One More Thing

And it's a big one. Mother Jones is launching a new Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on the corruption that is both the cause and result of the crisis in our democracy.

The more we thought about how Mother Jones can have the most impact right now, the more we realized that so many stories come down to corruption: People with wealth and power putting their interests first—and often getting away with it.

Our goal is to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We're aiming to create a reporting position dedicated to uncovering corruption, build a team, and let them investigate for a year—publishing our stories in a concerted window: a special issue of our magazine, video and podcast series, and a dedicated online portal so they don't get lost in the daily deluge of headlines and breaking news.

We want to go all in, and we've got seed funding to get started—but we're looking to raise $500,000 in donations this spring so we can go even bigger. You can read about why we think this project is what the moment demands and what we hope to accomplish—and if you like how it sounds, please help us go big with a tax-deductible donation today.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.