This is a big deal that even Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly thinks should be given a chance to succeed.

Appearing on the conservative network just minutes after President Barack Obama held a news conference in the White House Rose Garden laying out the broad outlines for how the United States hopes to limit Tehran’s nuclear capabilities, O’Reilly — a harsh critic of Obama’s foreign policy — argued that conservatives should give diplomacy a chance.

“You don’t want a war with Iran,” he explained. “You don’t want to bomb that country because the unintended consequences will set the world aflame. So if you can get something that’s decent, you give it a shot. I think that’s a legitimate point,” O’Reilly said to a surprised Gretchen Carlson, host of the network’s daytime show, The Real Story.

It’s potentially a win-win for Iran and her negotiating partners, the U.S., China, Russia, the U.K., France, and Germany — and, by extension, the world.  Huge kudos to the President and John Kerry for getting us this far, with the possibility of an agreement in June.  The people of Iran, quite obviously, don’t want war — or death to America or Israel or themselves — their hard-right lunatic fringe notwithstanding.  They want to buy Macbooks, tweet, and surf, like anybody else.  (Full disclosure: I personally do not want to tweet or surf, and use a Lenovo.  But you know what I mean.)

As Ronald Reagan said of his deal with the Russians: “Trust but verify.”  Maybe here we need to rephrase: “Don’t trust — verify!”  But the general concept is the same: we should not let the hard-liners in Iran or the U.S. (or Israel or Russia or anywhere else) take us down the path to war when there’s a path to peace.

THEY’RE PLAYING YOUR SONG

You cannot fail to have fun with this site, which tells you the #1 hit song the day you were born — or, perhaps more tellingly, the night you were conceived . . . plays them for you . . . and (just because it was so easy for whoever programmed this to toss in), tells you the number of minutes you’ve been alive.

My songs were “Heartaches,” by Ted Weems and His Orchestra, and “The Gypsy,” by The Ink Spots.

Thanks, Mel!

HOW GREAT IS THIS?

To think how many kids once routinely killed themselves as preferable to living as gay or lesbian Americans . . .

. . . and that today we have the CEOs of Walmart and Apple and the mayors of Little Rock and Indianapolis — and just about everybody else — the President! the Pope! — saying, in effect, “Lay off!  LGBT folks should be welcome everywhere; love is a good thing; if you want to run a business open to the public, you need to welcome everyone.”

Etc., etc.

I use the phrase “etc. etc.” joyfully, in that this is by now so largely old news.  How great is that?

To a kid who centrally focused, from age 10 to 22, on never letting anyone know his true feelings — anyone! — the idea that we would have come so far in accepting — often embracing — our friends and relatives and neighbors and coworkers . . . and our “shared” friends like Ellen DeGeneris and Anderson Cooper and Elton John and Martina Navratilova . . . it’s just such a tribute to the good hearts and minds of the American people.

With further to go, to be sure . . .

. . . especially as regards the T in LGBT — transgender.

But we’re making progress there, too.  As previously noted, I love that the highest paid woman CEO in America last year, on the cover of New York Magazine for having made $38 million, is my pal Martine Rothblatt, born Martin.

And I love Krystal Ball’s piece on MSNBC a couple of days ago concerning a nine-year-old in Virginia.

Watch.

Particularly powerful, to me, were the remarks of that nine-year-old’s dad.

Amazingly, the school board voted against the nine-year-old.

But it’s only a matter of time before hearts and minds open wide enough to do — if you don’t mind my shorthanding it (and claiming to know) — what Jesus so clearly would have done.

AND HOW ABOUT THIS — IN CHINA!

“ . . . Everyone is unique in some way, so let’s work to have society catch up with science,” People’s Daily, the Communist Party flagship news media outlet, wrote on its microblog account. “Respecting the choices of people like Li Yinhe is respecting ourselves.”

Li Yinhe’s partner of 17 years is transgender.  Li herself is (vaguely) the Dr. Ruth of China.  Read it all here in the New York Times.

Come on, Virginia: “let’s work to have society catch up with science.”

Have a great weekend!

 

 

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