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January 5, 2009


Sam Adams is Portland, Oregon's new mayor. He is also the first openly gay Mayor of a major U.S. city.

According to The Portland Monthly, 45 year old Adams actually won the election in May but was just sworn in at 12:01am New Year's day. He garnered an impressive 58% of the vote and "...his rise to leadership comes at a pivotal moment, as the city grows in the national consciousness as a leader in “green” issues and a coveted place to live, as communities struggle to do more with less in a desperate economy, and as mayors begin to rival governors and members of Congress as celebrities."

The Oregonian, on it's website Oregonlive.com, reported that about 40 people, including Adam's mother and his partner Peter Zuckerman, were on hand to watch the official swearing-in at City Hall. The oath of office was administered by Oregon Supreme Court Justice Virginia Linder who, when thanked by Adams, said "It's my honor. My deep honor."

Despite the disappointments of November 4th (all of which I fully expect to be eventually overturned), the GLBT community is rapidly becoming a real, and natural, part of this country's everyday life. And the pace of this change is increasing every year. That's why the rightwing fringe fanatics are becoming more and more frenetic. They know they're losing and they can't stop it. This is making them more and more frustrated -- and dangerous.

So, please, be careful out there. There are some pretty disturbed people running around our streets who are being riled-up by these fanatics so exercising a little extra, measured caution would be a smart thing to do.

I'm not saying that we should jump back into the closed and hide. On the contrary, now is the time to stand up and be strong. But during this period of transition, just be a little more aware of your surroundings when your out and about and don't take anything for granted. Trust your instincts and develop your street-smarts.