Coming Soon:

The following books by Robert Paul Wolff are available on Amazon.com as e-books: KANT'S THEORY OF MENTAL ACTIVITY, THE AUTONOMY OF REASON, UNDERSTANDING MARX, UNDERSTANDING RAWLS, THE POVERTY OF LIBERALISM, A LIFE IN THE ACADEMY, MONEYBAGS MUST BE SO LUCKY, AN INTRODUCTION TO THE USE OF FORMAL METHODS IN POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY.
Now Available: Volumes I, II, III, and IV of the Collected Published and Unpublished Papers.

NOW AVAILABLE ON YOUTUBE: LECTURES ON KANT'S CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON. To view the lectures, go to YouTube and search for "Robert Paul Wolff Kant." There they will be.

To contact me about organizing, email me at rpwolff750@gmail.com




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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

AN HISTORIC MOMENT

I have just watched the signing of the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell in C-Span, and I want to take a moment to memorialize this moment. It is an extraordinary moment, a unique moment. No other sitting president has regularly included gay and lesbian men and women in his stock speeches -- routinely talking about "all Americans, white or black, Christian or Jewish, old and young, rich or poor, gay or straight ..." If you are not as old as I am, you may have trouble understanding just how revolutionary this has been. In my lifetime, same-sex emotional and physical relationships have gone from being objects of ridicule or "the love that has no name" to an acknowledged and accepted part of American life. Let us recall that today, in many other parts of the world, homosexuality is not merely a crime but a capital crime.

When Obama spoke, I wept, and I am not ashamed to admit it, not merely for my son, who was in the room this morning when Obama signed the bill, but for the millions of men and women who are now officially recognized as part of the American community. Anti-gay bigotry still flourishes, of course, as does naked racial hatred -- witness the appalling statements made just this week by Haley Barbour, who fancies himself presidential material. But the John McCains and Jon Kyls, like the Haley Barbours, are now decisively and irretrievably on the wrong side of history.

The bill is signed. It is law. We need no longer speculate about the outcome of court cases, or the leanings of the Supreme Court. With this step taken, we can move on to that other terrible legacy of the Clinton years, the Defense of Marriage Act. Save your snarking for another day. This is a day for celebration.

3 comments:

Chris said...

Although the issue is not as important to me, I commend you on having achieved such a moment of bliss through/with your kin. That's a rare moment for parents, and you and your son deserve praise for keeping that sentiment alive in the world where child-parent alienation is growing. Congrats.

Robert Paul Wolff said...

Thank you for that thought, Chris. One of the greatest satisfactions of my life is the warm and close relationship I have with both of my sons. On the last night of my father's life, as he sat in a hospital, unable to talk because of a breathing tube in his throat, I told him I loved him, and then said that he had been a better father to me than his father had been to him, and that I hoped to be an even better father to my sons. Thirty years later, I hope that I have succeeded.

Scott said...

Looks like they've got some hard work ahead of them if this trend is to continue :)