Has it really been only 17 months since advice columnist and provocateur Dan Savage and his spouse Terry Miller brilliantly launched the It Gets Better Project? As you may know, Savage was disturbed by a rash of gay teen suicides—and about the fact that despite how much progress the LGBT movement has made for gay adults, teenagers just coming out were still as isolated in their own despair, tormented by their peers, and not necessarily supported by friends, family, or school or religious authorities. Savage persuaded Terry to create a video with him about how much life transforms once we escape childhood and high school—and the brilliant project went viral.
Last night, MTV aired an "It Gets Better" broadcast, which I haven't seen; you can find the trailer here. Pegged to that broadcast, Mother Jones posted an interview with Savage yesterday that's worth reading. My favorite bit:
MJ: Okay, given your sordid past with Rick Santorum, I have to ask how you feel about Santorum's recent hot streak in the GOP primaries.
DS: I am freaking out. You might be scared, but I'm the one who's going to be audited every year! On the one hand, I just feel like because of the comments he's made about birth control that he just cannot get elected, so part of me thinks "God, I hope he's the nominee." And then part of me thinks that if he's the nominee and the economy tanks, then somehow he'll wind up in the White House. I was one of those people that had hoped for McCain when he ran for the nomination—and I don't want to whistle past that graveyard again.
MoJo posted a couple of It Gets Better videos. When I watched the San Francisco police department's video, I got a bit weepy. In a series of spliced interviews, about half a dozen different SFPD employees told my childhood story, complete with the suicidal teen period when I felt just too different to live. (I also got a little bitty crush on the cute redheaded cop. Please don't tell my wife.)
In related news, Harry Potter (er, I mean Daniel Radcliffe) has filmed a PSA for The Trevor Project, an organization and hotline dedicated specifically to saving LGBTQ (the "q" is for "questioning") youth in crisis or considering suicide. Bless him! Had there been such a thing in 1973, I would most certainly have called. Very nicely, the PSA premiered on Glee.
What Dan Savage started has surely earned him a place in heaven. For god's sake, why doesn't he have a MacArthur yet?