The brashness of youth

In Dirty Sexy Politics, Nashville-lover Meghan McCain, Senator John McCain's only daughter, recounts her experience of the '08 presidential campaign. A free thinker like her father, she peppers her writing with suggestions about where the Republican Party should be heading, far away from intolerant members of the Religious Right and social conservatives. With genuine candor, she does not shy away from describing herself as a modern, humane, determined moderate Republican. Accused of being a RINO – Republican In Name Only – because she supports same-sex marriage, the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell, and contraceptive sex education, she also believes in small government and lower taxes, and a strong national defense against terrorism. An all-American girl from Arizona, she admits to not fitting the bill of a senior Republican politician's daughter-of.

Perhaps the most striking element in this book is her naivete and, at times, the brashness of youth she embodies. While she assures us she has grown up since the campaign, and did not engage in ''crazysex'' at work (i.e. random encounters ubiquitous in stressful environments like political campaigns), the book gives an account of how she learns to deal with bullies and smear campaigns. On Steve Schmidt, her father's infamously ornery political strategist, she bluntly admits, 'I was an irritating insect to him, and one that he wished would fly away – or drop dead'. Further, on smear campaigns, she says matter-of-factly, 'The trick, I think, is to remain humane and just forgive.'

The flip side, obviously, is her lack of experience and her raw feelings. She looks up to Barry Goldwater, even though he did not support the Civil Rights Act of 1964 for the same reasons she laughs at Rand Paul on TV. She confesses to high jinks played on her dad's speechwriter, Mark Saltzer. She also tends to take it all a bit too personally, sobs whenever she feels ostracized, and occasionally gives in to snapping. Unschooled in groupthink – which she regards as counter to individual freedom – she recounts being asked to leave. With unrelenting resilience, she weathered through the storm on her own bus tour across another part of the country, revelling in the wide readership of her once-deemed ''irreparable'' blog.

Undaunted and energized, Meghan McCain now openly takes on the big elephant – both the emblem of the Republican Party and the beast she has to tame to feel like herself. A moderate Republican, she hopes to become a role model for young conservatives who feel at odds with the Ann Coulter type. Because of her youth, she is also particularly suited to engaging with young voters without giving the impression of lording it over. In under 200 pages, she offers us a heartfelt confession and a truly enjoyable read, from a refreshingly youthful perspective.

Victor Stepien is a member of the Tennessee Equality Project.

WhistlePig + Alfa Romeo F1

SHOREHAM, VT (September 13, 2023) — WhistlePig Whiskey, the leaders in independent craft whiskey, and Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake are waving the checkered flag on a legend-worthy release that’s taking whiskey to G-Force levels. The Limited Edition PiggyBack Legends Series: Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is a high Rye Whiskey selected by the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake drivers, with barrels trialed in their wind tunnel to ensure a thrilling taste in every sip.

The third iteration in WhistlePig’s Single Barrel PiggyBack Legends Series, the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake Barrel is bottled at 96.77 proof, a nod to Valtteri Bottas’ racing number, 77, and the precision of racing. Inspired by Zhou Guanyu, the first Chinese F1 driver, this Rye Whiskey is finished with lychee and oolong tea. Herbal and floral notes of the oolong tea complement the herbaceous notes of WhistlePig’s signature PiggyBack 100% Rye, rounded out with a juicy tropical fruit finish and a touch of spice.

Keep readingShow less
by Spectrum Medical Care Center

Nurse Practitioner Ari Kravitz

When I started medical transition at 20 years old, it was very difficult to get the care I needed for hormone replacement therapy because there are very few providers trained in starting hormones for trans people, even though it’s very similar to the hormones that we prescribe to women in menopause or cisgender men with low testosterone.

I hope more providers get trained in LGBTQ+ healthcare, so they can support patients along their individual gender journey, and provide the info needed to make informed decisions about their body. I’ve personally seen my trans patients find hope and experience a better quality of life through hormone replacement therapy.

Keep readingShow less

Descanso Resort swimming pool and lounge area

Descanso Resort, Palm Springs' premier destination for gay men, just received Tripadvisor's highest honor, a Travelers' Choice "Best of the Best" award for 2023. Based on guests' reviews and ratings, fewer than 1% of Tripadvisor's 8 million listings around the world receive the coveted "Best of the Best" designation. Descanso ranked 12th in the top 25 small inns and hotels category in the United States. Quite an accomplishment!

Open less than two years, Descanso Resort offers gay men a relaxing and luxurious boutique hotel experience just minutes away from Palm Springs' buzziest restaurants, nightclubs, and shopping. Descanso has quickly established itself as a top destination for sophisticated gay travelers, earning hundreds of 5-star guest reviews and consistently ranking in Trapadvisor's top positions alongside brother properties Santiago Resort and Twin Palms Resort.

Keep readingShow less