Even though it's not specifically about LGBT issues, I think that with the amount of disappointment people in the community have faced this past year that Christopher Hayes hits the nail on the head here:
American progressives were the first to identify that something was deeply wrong with the direction the country was heading in and the first to provide a working hypothesis for the cause: George W. Bush. During the initial wave of antiwar mobilization, in 2002, much of the ire focused on Bush himself. But as the decade stretched on, the causal account of the country's problems grew outward in concentric circles: from Bush to his administration (most significantly, Cheney) to the Republican Party to--finally (and not inaccurately)--the entire project of conservative governance.[...]
If the working hypothesis that bound this unwieldy coalition together--independents, most liberals and the Washington establishment--was that the nation's troubles were chiefly caused by the occupants of the White House, then this past year has served as a kind of natural experiment. We changed the independent variable (the party and people in power) and can observe the results. It is hard, I think, to come to any conclusion but that the former hypothesis was insufficient.
It's exactly the case for LGBT people, especially those in the community who are focused on DOMA, DADT, and ENDA. We saw Bush as a brick wall to beat our heads against, because, as both sides in the ENDA/GENDA/SPLENDA debate in 2007 acknowledged, he wasn't going to sign anything anyway and we definitely didn't have a veto-proof majority in Congress.
Obama was supposed to change that, and many of us invested an incredible amount of time, money, and talent to get him elected thinking that it would be easy sailing after he got in office.
Well, we were wrong. Homophobia and transphobia are deeper than political party or even political ideology, and there are reasons that they exist outside of "People are ignorant."
Hayes goes on to talk about why we work to make the US more just and democratic, even if we'll never get there:
Michels recognized the challenge his work presented to his comrades on the left and viewed the task of democratic socialists as a kind of noble, endless, Sisyphean endeavor, which he described by invoking a German fable. In it, a dying peasant tells his sons that he has buried a treasure in their fields. "After the old man's death the sons dig everywhere in order to discover the treasure. They do not find it. But their indefatigable labor improves the soil and secures for them a comparative well-being."
"The treasure in the fable may well symbolize democracy," Michels wrote. "Democracy is a treasure which no one will ever discover by deliberate search. But in continuing our search, in laboring indefatigably to discover the undiscoverable, we shall perform a work which will have fertile results in the democratic sense."
After a rather dispiriting few months, the treasure in this case may seem impossibly remote, but one thing the Obama campaign got right was its faith in America's history of continually and fruitfully tilling the soil of democracy, struggling against odds until, at certain moments of profound progressive change, a new treasure is improbably found.
Ultimately, even if we get everything on our legislative wishlist passed - an end to DOMA and DADT, ENDA, anti-bullying legislation at the state-level, fair laws governing gender markers on official documents - there will still be homophobia and transphobia. There will still be people fired for transitioning. There will still be gay folks in the military harassed brutally for being open about their sexuality. There will still be gender-bending kids beat up on the playground. There will still be families kicking their queer teens out of the house. There will still be straight exes denying their newly-out partners from seeing their kids. There will still be violence in the streets against two women who hold each others' hands.
Police officers are still finding ways to arrest gay and bisexual men for having sex even after Lawrence ended sodomy laws. States are still rolling back funding for anti-retrovirals that was won a decade ago. Transsexual women are still being tortured in prison in ways that our criminal justice system doesn't even impose on cissexual felons.
This stuff runs deeper than "Democrat or Republican," and there are plenty of people who support in the abstract what we want out of the political system who, themselves, are dealing with these issues and probably will their whole lives. And it's also deeper than "If people would just meet us, they'd like us." There are plenty of people who know us and don't particularly like us, and even still they find new, creative ways to love the sinner but hate the sin.
But does that mean that we give up? Absolutely not. LGBT activism is a huge, constant undertaking that has to maintained so that the water doesn't find its own level, so that people don't fall back on the comforting narratives, simplistic worldviews, and authoritarian impulses that led to queer oppression in the first place or finding new ideologies and epistemologies that subordinate people whose gender and sexuality don't quite fit into the pre-determined boxes centers of power make up to control populations.
In the words of Michel's fable, our choice is to till the soil, with the complete knowledge that we'll never find the treasure of a perfectly queer-friendly society, or we can let the field dry up.