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by Rex Wockner

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The dream has never died. [ It ] lives on in those Americans—young and old, rich and poor, black and white, gay and straight...—Presidential candidate Barack Obama ( pictured ) .

' [ Coming out is ] very powerful. It's not just about saying you're gay. It's about an existential moment in time where you face up to all those forces that are pushing you in one direction, and you look them straight in the face and you say, 'No, that is not who I am. I am this. And I own this.' It's so powerful that those of us who are straight have to figure out what we have to come out about, because everybody's got something to come out about. And when we see you do that, it encourages us, it inspires us. I don't think you know that. I don't think you recognize that, the power of that act.' — Actress Judith Light, currently starring on ABC's Ugly Betty as Claire Meade, to the Palm Springs gay magazine The BottomLine, Jan. 18.

'The dream has never died. [ It ] lives on in those Americans—young and old, rich and poor, black and white, Latino and Asian and Native American, gay and straight—who are tired of a politics that divides us and want to recapture the sense of common purpose that we had when John Kennedy was president of the United States of America. That is the dream we hold in our hearts. That is the kind of leadership we long for in this country. And that is the kind of leadership I intend to offer as president of the United States of America.' — Presidential candidate Barack Obama as he accepted the endorsement of U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., Jan. 28.

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'Over the years, I've been deeply moved by the people who've told me they wished they could feel inspired and hopeful about America the way people did when my father was president. ... Sometimes it takes a while to recognize that someone has a special ability to get us to believe in ourselves, to tie that belief to our highest ideals and imagine that together we can do great things. In those rare moments, when such a person comes along, we need to put aside our plans and reach for what we know is possible. We have that kind of opportunity with Senator Obama.' — Caroline Kennedy writing in The New York Times, Jan. 27.

'The Obama revolution arrived not on little cat feet in the Iowa snow but like a balmy promise, an effortlessly leaping lion hungry for something different, propelled by a visceral desire among Americans to feel American again. The Bushes always self-consciously and swaggeringly put themselves 'on the American side,' as Poppy used to say, implying that their rivals were somehow less American. But many Americans can no longer see themselves in the warped values of the Bush White House or the pathetic paralysis of Congress or the disapproving gaze of the world. They want a different looking glass. So they rolled the dice.' — New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, Jan. 6.

'I wanted 2007 to end, with a line drawn firmly under it, and move on. The last couple of years were shit. I mean, I got arrested twice. I'll be 47 in June. I've had enough. It affects everything in your life. I don't ever want to see a policeman again. I have a New Year's resolution. I'm going to try hard to become a shrinking violet.' — Boy George to London's Daily Mail, Jan. 18.

'I open my mouth and bitchy things come out. I'm really trying to curb that. It doesn't make me look good. I was reading some things I'd said and I sounded horrible.' — Boy George to London's Daily Mail, Jan. 18.

'God knows it's not easy to live here [ in San Francisco ] . It's way too expensive; you know traffic is awful; there's a lot of drawbacks to living here. But you're so heavily rewarded by your surroundings in terms of both people and scenery—and people who are scenery!' — Tales of the City author Armistead Maupin to The Out Traveler, spring 2008 issue.

'My mother had a hairdresser who looked like, I don't know, Liberace on steroids. It was frightening! And I thought he was the only gay person in the world, and I didn't wanna be like him. I figured out that the feelings that I had towards other boys were not to be revealed. So, you learn to live a double life.' — Tales of the City author Armistead Maupin to CBS News, Jan. 27.

' [ Newspaper columnist ] Herb Caen used to cringe over the years at the term 'Frisco,' but the only one that really bothers me is 'San Fran.' It's the term that visiting flight attendants use. It's not really a term of affection for locals. It's increased in popularity in recent years, but I cringe when I hear 'San Fran.' It's just a bug up my ass.' — Tales of the City author Armistead Maupin to The Out Traveler, spring 2008 issue.

—Assistance: Bill Kelley

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