Ricci Levy

Ak-scent-tu-ate the Positive

Filed By Ricci Levy | January 28, 2009 12:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Living, Politics, Politics
Tags: Barack Obama, Creating Change conference, Denver, politics

That phrase is from a (probably very) old song - "Accentuate the Positive," by Johnny Mercer. Well, that's what I feel like doing this morning from here in (really cold!) Denver at Creating Change. Yesterday when I arrived at the Denver airport, I followed the crowd to the escalators, moved with them onto the train, spent time scrolling through my blackberry and, finally, exited at that main terminal.

Looking around for where I should go to get a shuttle I came to a dead halt and suddenly was fully "in the moment." There - stretched across a large railing facing everyone getting off the train was a banner from Creating Change welcoming us and announcing the conference. US! Right there! Proud as anything and big as life!

My mind went to the battles fought for so long by folks whose names are legend to most of us and the victory that is embodied in that one banner greeting every arrival at the Denver airport.

I was hugging that wonderful feeling to myself through the entire ride to the conference hotel and, after checking in, had the delightful experience of finally meeting Max - if you're here at the conference, be sure to ask for him at the Concierge desk. Max and I have been talking on the phone for a while now and he will, in fact, be volunteering at the conference.

Anyway, after we exchanged hugs and I told him about the banner, he told me how wonderful it is for him to work at a hotel that is so accepting and inclusive of the lgbt population. And we talked about events that have come to Denver lately and how he felt when he saw the rainbow flags all up and down the main streets of the city.

So what's my point, other than to wax rhapsodic about how I felt yesterday? Well, my point is that when you're engaged in a daily struggle for every breath you can forget how sweet the air can smell when it's fresh and clean.

We're making progress - wonderful progress. We are finally at a point where we really CAN impact the administration. Let's not focus so much on what's wrong and take a moment to look at what's right - or at least better!

Most of the rest of the lyrics to that song are below.

You've got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
And latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

You've got to spread joy up to the maximum
Bring gloom down to the minimum
Have faith or pandemonium's
Liable to walk upon the scene

To illustrate my last remark
Jonah in the whale, Noah in the ark
What did they do just when everything looked so dark?

(Man, they said "We'd better accentuate the positive")
("Eliminate the negative")
("And latch on to the affirmative")
Don't mess with Mister In-Between (No!)
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

(Ya got to spread joy up to the maximum)
(Bring gloom down to the minimum)
(Have faith or pandemonium's)
(Liable to walk upon the scene)


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GLBT Realist | January 28, 2009 12:57 PM

"Well, my point is that when you're engaged in a daily struggle for every breath you can forget how sweet the air can smell when it's fresh and clean."

Well, I suppose that ideology depends on which "fresh and clean" side of the tracks that you come from, doesn't it ??


There are many people in the community who wouldn't share your sentiment of "progress" since many can not even afford Blackberrys or have the financial means to buy airline tickets and book ritzy hotel rooms to attend conferences, let alone have the opportunity to be buddy-buddy with hotel concierges............

So Ms. Levy, all might be "progressive" fame and glamor in your "GL" political activist world, but I would encourage you to visit a city by public transportation, spend some time hugging the GLBT homeless and sleep a few nights in a Section 8 apartment building with those who have nothing but the clothes on their back and a scar on their hearts and look into their eyes and tell them how much "progress" we have made and also be sure and tell them how much your trip to Denver cost.............

Sorry, but you "creating change" activists are so out of touch from what is currently going on in the community. Progress ??? Maybe for the rich "GL" elitist activists ONLY club.......... Thank you for your time.