After the much-deserved beat-down that Prop 8 received in California yesterday afternoon, we thought that the press release we found in our inbox this morning for this video by Latin funk/hip-hop band Ozomatli's new music video was incredibly fitting. Judge Walker's ruling that Prop 8's ban on same-sex marriage was fundamentally unconstitutional chalked up a much-needed point for love in all it's many and varied forms. As does this song, "Gay Vatos in Love."
"Vato" is Mexican slang for "dude"....and the rest is pretty much self-explanatory. It's refreshing, and admirable, that a band of guys who identify as heterosexual produced a song that is so baldly and bravely out there. Literally "out" there. The band, who have been known for their activist work and themes throughout their 15-year career, wrote the song in reaction to the protests and controversy surrounding Prop 8, as well as in response to the murder of a Colorado transgender teen, Angie Zapata, who was killed in a hate crime in 2008. (Her case was the first in the nation to get a conviction for a hate crime involving a transgender victim.) Percussionist Jiro Yamaguchi says, of the song's (which some, apparently, believed to be a joke) intended message, "all that this community is asking for is the same rights, the same civil rights, that everyone else gets if you fall in love." And that's a sentiment that pretty much every vato should be able to get behind.