Sally’s Other Ride

America’s First Woman in Space 1951-2012

Sally Ride was a lesbian who lived in a 27-year, committed, monogamous  relationship with Dr. Tam O’Shaughnessy. You probably don’t have that immediate image of a gay person, right?  When you think of someone who’s gay, you imagine a painted, wild screamer with pink flamingo feathers in his hair and purple butt cheeks, dancing in the San Francisco Gay Pride parade.

But stereotypes are short cuts to ignorance.  They’re like visual clichés – no thought involved.

I have a problem with stereotyping too.  Whenever I see a nun, my blood pressure shoots into a negative abyss.  Slowly, I give her the benefit of the doubt.  Maybe she was just kidnapped as a child and forced into a convent.

I read somewhere about a guy who would HATE for his daughter to use Sally Ride for a role model.  Don’t worry about it, buddy.  First of all, you’d have little to say about it anyway.  More important, Ride was chosen from 8,000 applicants to be a NASA astronaut.  Something tells me any kid of yours wouldn’t even be allowed to load the rocket with Tang.

Sally Ride history: www.google.com

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