I love this phrase from Rep. Cleaver's statement after being spit upon, "Our nation has a history of struggling each time we expand rights."
I think that's exactly true and part of the reason I still feel hopeful. Despite the ups and downs, the pattern remains clear: Americans GAIN rights over time. The right to health care is another in a long line. The same is true for gay marriage. 5 years ago there's no chance gay people in DC could be married. 5 years from now, I think gay marriage will be legal in 15 or 20 states. We're going the right way, it's just damn hard to get there sometimes.