In order to honor the "real-life lesbians and bisexual women who were visible at all costs," SheWired has launched an annual Gay Woman of the Year.
The competition is tough. My personal finalists were Wanda Sykes (whom I think is hilarious, but wish she would have come out before Prop 8 instead of after), Ellen DeGeneres (who I like for being a positive, funny comedian and being open lesbian whom many people nonetheless adore), Rachel Maddow, and former Top Chef contestant Jamie Lauren (she was a self-indulgent choice as she is my Top Chef crush).
Oh, and also, nominee Brandi Carlile is..... talented, and she came out earlier this year (not to my surprise, of course), and did so in a way that I thought was classy and gracious. She fully acknowledged that because of forerunners like Indigo Girls and Elton John, she hasn't had to suffer some the same travails with respect to her sexual orientation. Anyway.... *sigh*:
I ended up voting for Maddow. She is brilliant. She is quick. And, perhaps because for her it is personal, when she covers LGBT issues, she knows the material better than anyone else on television. Unlike others, she doesn't always allow an interviewee to present an asinine anti-gay position as though it's a legitimate "other side" to a debate just because it's another perspective. She is quite willing to call bullshit, but she does it an intelligent, non-angry way that is quite different than, say, Keith Olbermann or Glenn Beck, who are prone to pontificating through spittle, rage, and tears.
Who gets your vote?