The Medium algorithm is either truly excellent, or the fact that I found your story at the top of my feed this morning is a happy coincidence.

I sometimes write about the difference between nice and good in an LGBTQ context. I think of the Mormon teenager who once wrote to me about how her bishop was so nice to her while excluding her from events due to her sexual orientation. “I don’t want people to be nice,” she told me. “I need them to be good.”

Conversely, in a story I posted this morning, I write about activism, specifically about Act Up’s eshewal of niceness in the 1980s and 90s when we were figuring to save lives.

We still take flack in some quarters (more on the Left than on the Right) for not having been nice.

Nice is over-valued, I think. Perhaps Ellen exemplifies this by holding it up as a particular virtue.

Written by

Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot.

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