It’s 35 years later, but a gay man has again apparently saved the life of a federal official.
Daniel Hernandez ran into harm’s way last Saturday to come to the aid of Congresswoman Giffords after she was shot by this lunatic kid Loughner, who clearly is a few croutons short of a salad.
It brings to mind the gay former marine, Oliver Sipple, who took down Sara Jane Moore outside the St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco on Sept. 22, 1975, as President Gerald Ford was leaving the building. He disarmed the would be assassin after she got a shot off.
At the time, Sipple was not ‘out’ to his family or the world. The news coverage which followed brought his sexuality into the news, and it compromised his life considerably. He was just not ready for the truth.
Sipple even sued the San Francisco Chronicle’s Herb Caen and several newspapers for invasion of privacy, but his case was dismissed. By taking the action he did, the courts found, Sipple, and thus his sexual orientation, had become news.
Supposedly, Sipple’s reward for saving the life of the President of the United States was that his mother never spoke to him again.
Daniel Hernandez, on the other hand, is openly gay, a member of Tucson’s city commission on gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues. A 20-year-old congressional college intern with only five days on the job, his actions are being applauded on gay blogs as well as in mainstream newspapers.
In Arizona, legislators gave him a standing ovation. Senator McCain did not say whether he could serve in the military or not. Actually, McCain and his VP choice, Sarah ‘shoot-em-in-the crosshairs’ Palin, are both looking like fools now.
Shakespeare wrote that ‘To thine own self be true, and it follows, as the night, the day, thou canst be a liar to any other man.’ You never know when the sun is going to shine on you and bring light to your life. It could be an illuminating glow which inspires others, or it may be a glare that shows you naked. Either way, you had best be ready for the moment.
On Saturday, January 8, 2011, a young gay man, Daniel Hernandez was up to the task, and he became a true hero, allowing America to see once again that you measure a man by what he does with his clothes on in the daytime, not who he does at night in the privacy of his bedroom.
Maybe as the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force plans its latest muscle beach party to line their coiffures they will celebrate the lives of some gay men and women who have actually achieved something other than a pirouette on a skateboard.