by Jaime McLeod
With Maine becoming the fifth state in the union to approve same-sex marriage, our former Jaime McLeod, a member of MTV's Street Team '08, wrote a blog for us about what the ruling means to her ...
Five years ago, my partner and I stood up in front of our families, our friends and our God, and pledged to walk together and care for one another, no matter what life brings. Though it wasn't legally binding, we meant it, and we still mean it today.
In 89 days, we will finally be able to make the vows we made to one another official. It won't change the way we see our relationship. It won't change the way those who love us see our relationship. And, for that matter, it won't change the way those who hate us see our relationship. As some of my gay friends keep pointing out, gay marriage won't cure homophobia. It won't cure AIDS. It won't keep queer kids from getting bullied in school. But it's a step. It ensures that the relationship my partner and I have worked so hard on for the last eight years doesn't receive fewer protections under the law than the drunken Vegas wedding of a pop starlet to some guy she hardly knows. It means our friends won't have to go through a ridiculously difficult legal process so that their kids can have two legal parents. And it means that a majority of legislators in my state were willing to stand up and acknowledge that same-sex relationships are just as valid as heterosexual ones.
Thank you, Maine State Legislature, and Gov. Baldacci, for doing the right thing and affirming the rights of all Mainers. You're all invited to my second wedding!
You gotta get up really early to make history. Or, in the case of 28-year-old Tom Krieglstein, stay up late. Hours before anyone else thought to line up for tonight's rally in Grant Park for Senator Barack Obama, the Wrigleyville, Chicago, native proudly took his place as the first person in the queue at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, a full 24 hours before the doors open for the event.
"It's history," he said, explaining why he showed up so early. "Having Obama as president is history, and that's why I wanted to be the first person in line." For two and a half hours, Krieglstein was the line, since his fiancée got sick and bailed on him. Then, around 10:00 p.m., a second person showed up. The #3 slot didn't get filled until early Tuesday morning. Read More...
By Akshay Bhansali
OK, OK. The lines may be a bit of a pain as you queue up to cast your vote for the next president of the United States today. But if his Diddyness can muster up the spirit, so can you! And let's see you try to do it with 10 cameras following you.
Well, perhaps his trip was a bit expedited. In fact, once Sean Combs entered the Coalition School for Social Change, his polling station in Midtown Manhattan, his visit to the voting booth probably clocked in at around eight minutes. And during those eight minutes, Diddy did what he does best: electrify the room. Sullen, drowsy would-be voters were jolted awake. Frowns and droopy eyes were quickly replaced with smiles, hugs and flash photography. Combs was cordial and friendly as many, including an 80-year-old fellow marathon-runner, struck up conversation with the entertainment titan. Read More...
Yes, voters hit the polls early, braving long lines to make their voices heard today. But even those who can't step into the booth are helping out. Our Pennsylvania Choose or Lose Street Teamer, Cassidy Hartmann, came across two 13-year-olds in Philadelphia hoisting a banner reading, "Don't forget to vote today." One of the students said his teacher asked them to go outside and remind people to vote. But his friend admitted, "At first, I wanted to get out of class." Although they aren't old enough to vote (and aren't fully decided on a candidate), they do understand the importance of voting this Election Day. So why were they there? Check out Cassidy's video to find out.
MTV News is at the polls in all 50 states — check out our coverage all day long on MTV and right here on MTVNews.com. Then, tell us why you made your voice heard and tell us why you voted. Comment below, upload video at yourhere.mtv.com, or text VOTE to 66333 with your first name, age, state and a comment about your experience, and your message will appear on our election map, and could appear on TV today!
Today, as voters scramble to the polls in West Virginia and Nebraska, our Chose or Lose Street Teamers in those states are on the ground, blogging their little hearts out.
But beyond the general excitement of the primaries in this overheated, seemingly neverending campaign (well, at least we'll have a Democratic nominee soon), the Street Team is bringing a more personal side to the process. From Nebraska, we've got an insider's peek at the US Senate campaign of Scott Kleeb -- a young candidate (above) whose fate will be decided today, and who just happens to be married to Street Teamer Jane Fleming Kleeb.
And for more on today's primaries, check out Griffin McElroy's reports from West Virginia.
So Street Team '08 -- our Choose or Lose reporters covering the election in every state -- partied it up green-style around the country in honor of Earth Day.
Erica Anderson of Washington, DC, checked out the Green Apple Fest in her town –- one of eight going on in different cities across the country this past weekend, with celebs, musicians, politicians, and thousands of fans coming out to support the cause. The DC show had Earth-friendly performances from artists including the Roots and O.A.R., and the National Anthem was sung, appropriately, by American Idol Jordin Sparks.
But the highlight for Erica might have been when she scored an interview with Chevy Chase (at 1:19), who answered her serious environmental questions in true comic form. Erica said that she rolled with the comedic punches until Chase turned somber and said, “’OK, I'll give you something serious.’ He went on to tell me about the candidates he preferred, who had the strongest policies, and that ‘McCain is like going back to the old days....no offense…’“
Also check out the Green Apple event in Denver, CO, through Street Teamer Trevor Martin’s video, featuring interviews with everyone from Aaron Neville to Denver’s mayor.
It doesn't just have to be Earth Day for the ST to jump on the environmental bandwagon (which is totally run on biodiesel). Check out their recent stories on green jobs, car conversions, and what the heck ethanol is.
And don't forget that it’s also the big Pennsylvania Primary day, when we might finally learn who the Democratic nominee for President will be. Check out PA Street Teamer Cassidy Hartmann's blog to see how it's all going down in her state.