Why I’m leaving blogging

After 30 years living in Washington, DC, I’ve moved to New York, have accepted a job with the United Nations, and am leaving blogging.

Three decades in the nation’s capital is a long time for a Chicago boy who swore he’d get out of dodge long ago. My exit was a long time coming, but what finally pushed me into action was a perfect storm of success, necessity and luck.

Success

We’ve won. The civil rights of gays are now an inevitability in America.

Now, that doesn’t mean that eternal vigilance is no longer needed. It is.

It also doesn’t mean that the fight for civil rights is over. It’s not.

But the war is over, in the sense that the bad guys, and the issue overall, have passed a cultural tipping point from which they will, and can, never recover. We, our civil and human rights, are now an inevitability (in America, at least). And trans rights are finally breaking into the open to an unprecedented degree, which will someday lead to their inevitability as well.

We have achieved successes that few of us expected to see in our lifetime, let alone by as early as 2015. And to be sure, problems still exist. And there will continue to be setbacks, some quite serious. So I appreciate those who say it isn’t over. But from the standpoint of history — and social, cultural and political inevitability — it really is.

Necessity

Ever since the economy crashed in 2008, blogging has been a difficult business to keep afloat financially. I spent $50,000 of my own now-gone savings keeping AMERICAblog afloat over the past six years. You can only do that for so long.

The viability of blogs as a sustainable business model has been in question for a while. I gave it the college try for six years after the crash, but due to a variety of reasons it never came back sufficiently to be able put enough food on the table, and more importantly, ensure that there would be more than cat-food on the menu when I retire many years hence.

Luck

I decided after doing last year’s taxes that something had to change. I love blogging and writing and politics, but I really do feel as if I accomplished what I set out to over 20 years ago that I joined Sen Kennedy’s office as a fellow hell-bent on finding a way to set my people free.

I stayed in DC, a town I never particularly liked, for three decades because I felt this was the best location for me to affect the most positive change. I turned down several high paying jobs over the years at, for example, the Fed and Booz-Allen, because I wanted to do good, not just do well. And I feel, in retrospect, that after 25 years working in Washington that good/goal was accomplished.

So, I decided last year to set myself a new challenge — shifting my domestic advocacy more globally, and going back to my roots in international affairs.

I came to Washington in 1985 to study law and foreign service at Georgetown. Having been raised the child of Greek immigrants (mom and my grandparents on both sides are from Greece, dad was born in Chicago), I was always into languages and foreign cultures (I studied four foreign languages simultaneously in college). I even took, and passed, the US Foreign Service exam in 1989 (the required test for becoming an American diplomat). I’d wanted to become a diplomat since I was in high school, but on receiving my acceptance letter I told the State Department “no” because I knew I was gay, and I knew that (at the time) gays weren’t permitted to serve our country. It was my one dream, and it was gone.

Then a funny thing happened a quarter of a century later. I applied for a job with the United Nations headquarters in New York City, and I got it. It seems the early reports of the death of my dream had been grossly exaggerated.

So last week, I picked up and moved to New York. I’ve been offered an amazing position at the UN where I’ll be using the Internet to help people all over the world. It’s the proverbial offer you can’t refuse.

New Beginnings

Sasha's new waterfront dog park officially makes her an uptown girl.

Sasha’s new waterfront dog park, with view of the UN, officially makes her an uptown girl.

I’m excited about the new job, rather nervous about the move to NY, surprisingly ambivalent about leaving DC (though I’ll miss my friends), and all the while missing my dog who has taken up temporary residence at mom’s. (I actually caught myself talking to the dog recently and referring to my parents as her yiayia and papou — Greek for grandma and grandpa!)

So that’s my story.

At age 51, I’m reinventing myself yet again, and beginning my boldest adventure yet. I really do believe that we live life best when we are challenged; and I’m looking forward to the challenge that now lies ahead.

AMERICAblog will continue under the editorial leadership of our very own Jon Green, and the business leadership of my nephew Anthony Katsivalis, who has long worked in the field of online marketing. Jon and Anthony will continue to manage and nurture AMERICAblog, and I hope you’ll join them for the adventure.

Thank you all for all of your support over the years. We set out to change the course of politics in America and the world. And I really believe that in our own small way we did. I can’t think of leaving on a better note than that.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in New York City, and is the cofounder of TimeToResign.com. Bio, .

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  • SkippyFlipjack

    It’s funny, John upvoted most of the nice posts on this thread until 10 days ago, then stopped. When he says goodbye, the guy means it!

  • Lewis Singh

    I must say thanks for you service…..America blog was my first liberal site and it turned me on to the others. Good luck in your future endeavors

  • ToyotaBedZRock

    Wow, it cost that much to run this site?

  • citizen_spot

    Congratulations on your new career. Your voice will be missed, but we will stay calm and carry on (= have another gin and tonic). Thank you for helping to keep me sane through the last 15 years. Wishing you all the best for your bright new future!

  • Bill Burton

    Thanks for all your good works and congratulations on your new and promising work!

  • maildude39

    Congratulations John on opening a new chapter in your life. I have always appreciated your perspective and insights dating back to when you created “The List”. I can’t thank you enough for all of the amazing work you have done. Your voice on here will be sadly missed.
    Best of luck to you!

  • John – You were one of the first people to find me and have been more help and inspiration than I can say. We’ll miss you, of course – but our loss is the world’s gain eh? Thanks a million – scarlet

  • devis1

    Good Luck, John. Thank you for all the years of wonderful reading you provided. I have enjoyed it immensely.

  • karlInSanDiego

    Congratulations, John. We didn’t always see eye to eye, but without different points of view and without you bringing LGBT issues to my attention, I’d be a lesser person. So thank you very much for all the time and energy you put into this blog. Sorry to see you go, and best of luck with your new life!

  • Silver_Witch

    Congratulations John. I know you will be a great success in your new career and will be able to share you talent to the whole world!!! Leaving DC is a wonderful thing – I did it 3 years ago and have loved every minute of being free from its ups and downs.

    Take care and live long and prosper.

  • TerryInIowa

    Congratulations on the new gig, John. I have been following your words since I first subscribed to the email list at the suggestion of a friend, before the blog was a thing. Thank you for being a beacon of information and a driving force for the advancement of LGBT rights over the many years! Hopefully, you will find time to drop in and say “Hi” once in a while.

  • hauksdottir

    John,

    Well, thank you.

    Lordling? ::chuckle:: By going the diplomatic route in this new venture, you’ll be around plenty of powerful men, and women, with secrets, ambitions, and agendas perhaps not fully revealed. Until they are scratched at a little. ;)

    Despite mentioning four careers over the decades (reference librarian, real property appraiser, architectural & mechanical design drafter, game developer (animator and designer)), I wasn’t thinking about art as a career. I’ve always been an artist. Even now, with all my supplies in storage (I’m living out of 2 suitcases and a few boxes), I got twitchy, got some really weird paints, and experimented until I could create something beautiful. Art is not something I can walk away from: it is what I am.

    This recognition of continuity might also benefit you in those scary moments associated with being somewhere new, working at something new. You are a photographer. As they say, what is seen can not be unseen, and so is a way of seeing. You have the eye. One of the first things that attracted me to your blog were the photographs of orchids. Precisely delineated, lit, composed. Your stitched panoramas convey more of a sense of being there, aware of the vastness of a space, and seeing more details around you, than any fisheyed single shot. A professor once said that no matter where you are, there is a photograph within 10 feet. I suspect that you’d see it and mentally frame it. Light is everywhere.

    You may have to be cautious with political opinions in this career, and may not have energy for writing after choosing words all day, however, you can still make photographs of that which is important to you: family, friends, travel, holiday traditions, and, of course, Sasha. You might even have more travel, with more sites to be documented and shared. By posting these images, on a blog or website, you’ll let us see with you and keep in touch.

    Be well and best wishes!

    Carolly

  • hmontaigne

    Wow, congratulations, John, and thank you for all you’ve done to further the good!
    Best wishes in this new chapter of life, and I hope we’ll hear from you now and then, too.
    It’s like the end of an era…

  • jacquirafiq

    I check only 4 blogs everyday, You will be missed.
    Its like losing a family friend.
    Much Peace and many Blessings!!!

  • Freday63

    I will miss you John!

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  • kevinbgoode

    I’ve followed this blog for many years. You’ve stimulated us, challenged us, led us to stand up for ourselves and create change, gave us a voice and a place to share it, and certainly influenced my world. You will be missed, though I wish you so much success in this new adventure. Thank you for making this a place for so many of us to share and chronicle our journey to freedom.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    I do hope the December custom of Chrion Beta Prime continues.

  • vejo

    Best Wishes and Thank you!

  • Bookbinder

    Thanks, John, and good luck to you in all of your future reinventions!

  • Jonas Grumby

    Good for f’ing you!! I reinvented myself at just a shade older than you and it worked out WONDERFULLY. All the best!!!

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  • barada

    Good luck John, and may you keep finding the light.

  • HeywoodJa

    Good luck and best wishes for success. I’ve enjoyed your blog over the years.

  • Ninong

    Congratulations and good luck, John.

  • Badgerite

    Good luck John. Loved watching you work.

  • Thank you :) And Sasha thanks you too :)

  • That is so sweet, and sad, and sweet :)

  • Island In The Sky

    Congrats, John.

    While I hope AB continues and finds success, I have to admit it’s been dead to me for the last few years. It’s been mostly fluff lately with only sporadic good political writing and analysis.

    It was at its best 10 years ago, when you and Joe Sudbay were essential reading.

    Enjoy the new gig!

  • 2karmanot

    OT… I am struck by: “When my heart finally healed,” I am over at Facebook as Adgita Darie or my blog adgitadiaries(dot) (com). I wonder if that will ever happen. peace, M

  • 2karmanot

    Loved the animal spots!

  • 2karmanot

    I was somewhat addicted to troll stomping in the early days, but came out of it due to the ‘grace’ of reasoned argument that you always exhibited, even when attacked by dim wits and morons.

  • Dave of the Jungle

    Happy trails!

  • ComradeRutherford

    Wow, John, this is amazing! Lucky you getting such a cool job. Maybe I’ll see you when I come to the NPT Review Conference next month… NYC is AMAZING. We’ll miss your writing, but it’s for a good cause. Yay!

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    It’s just sinking in that you won’t be blogging anymore. I’ve spent a long time with your writing. My late husband found Americablog, and we both began to read it everyday. There were some strange results from reading AB. The strangest thing was my husband became an orchid murderer. Your Friday orchid blogging encouraged him to buy many orchids, which he brought home and promptly killed. Fortunately, we did better with the pet blogging. I watched Sasha grow up. When my heart finally healed, I remarried, and my new hubby now reads AB. You will be missed John.

  • DSR

    You’ve done great work! Thanks and good luck!

  • petewestcentral

    All the best in your new career. I’ve enjoyed AMERICAblog.

  • XKCD

    Many gay people still are members of the “lowly paid poor and unemployed”, and many gay people are other minorities also. Let’s not forget that gay people are disproportionately low-income, homeless (which honestly should be our next fight afte ENDA), and people of color. Given that Libertarians are the party of legal discrimination, I can’t see your worries coming to fruition.

  • Harry Underwood

    Good luck, John. I’ve read quite a few of your passionate posts. I think you’ll do great at the UN.

  • Badgerite

    Many bloggers. Only one John Aravosis. Live long and prosper. Sasha too.

  • RepubAnon

    Good luck in the Big Apple – and remember, the Acela has a special rate for people traveling to visit their dogs… ;)

  • hauksdottir

    Since you are curious, here is the link: https://www.etsy.com/shop/STARHAVEN
    Some of my art and photography is here as well.

  • jharp

    Best of luck to you, John.

    I really enjoyed your work. Been a follower since the Gannon?/Guckart pieces.

    That was some really good shit even though we never did find out the details.

    Peace, friend.

  • I’m not sure there’s anything I’ve ever written on the blog that didn’t have some intent behind it. It doesn’t mean any of it was contrived, of course. But I think a good writer, politico, activist, PR person has to have good message discipline. And that doesn’t mean their intent is always accurate or well thought out, but I do believe it should be at least thought out. Even the fun posts about cats were about giving people a breather from the incessant anger of politics, lest they burn out.

  • You have mine as well, don’t be a stranger :-)

  • SkippyFlipjack

    Congratulations John, very happy to hear this. As someone in your cohort who has current stresses about career issues, it’s really heartening to see you find something in a little different vein that you’re excited about. I’ve been a regular reader since around the time GWB was first elected — and it seems I’m not alone, I guess many of us were looking for solace and outlets for our frustration — and have stuck through a few comment systems, a couple usernames, a temporary ban or two and at least one death threat (good times!). Passionate people discussing important topics, that stuff happens. Thanks for the tireless work. Good luck in the Big Apple!

  • Zorba

    And you know my email address, John, so feel free to email me about any restaurant recommendations, or some of the perhaps lesser-known interesting places in NYC.
    Mr. Zorba and I visit NYC a lot because Daughter Zorba lives there, and she always has some great and different stuff to do.

  • Indigo

    I long suspected there was policy behind your practice but I didn’t try to decode it. You pretty well explained how that worked, there, in terms of empowering activism. Good job! You’ll be awesome at the U.N.

  • mirth

    Thanks, friend, and I’m always glad to read anything you write.

  • BashamRadio

    I’ll miss you John, but I do wish you nothing but the best. You deserve all the success you can achieve.

  • mirth

    The last part of your comment made me smile.

    Speaking as someone who sometimes (ok, maybe more often than that) writes with undisciplined passion and as a result has occasionally wished some of my comments had stayed in my head (a couple of which are floating around right now), it has been your uber-passionate words, albeit few as unrestrained as mine, that I most liked about you. It is the whole of you, your humanism, your strengths and failings, and your remarkable ability to cool after heated exchanges, that caused my attraction in the first place and made me want to stick around for more of what you had to say.

  • Oh, and I’ll still be posting on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aravosis

    Though not about politics, that’s off the plate for the new job. But I can blog about NYC, and Sasha, and life overall. And will. I’m even considering starting a new personal blog about moving to NYC. But am still not sure I want to start another blog, and have the writing requirement, now that I have a “real” job (as I call it). But I may. If I do, perhaps Jon will pass it along to you guys ;-)

  • Yeah, that was a good one — we got like half a million views on that story in just a day or so.

  • While there’s a longtime maxim in Internet-writing-land — “don’t read the comments” — I’ve always felt it important, in blogging at least, but activism as well, to try to connect to your audience. People don’t put themselves out to help you, to partake in whatever particular advocacy you’re pushing at the moment, or simply to share your articles online, unless you can connect with them. And, when there’s a connection, they’re more likely to come back and act again in the future. So I’ve always tried to engage readers, by email, here in the comments, on Twitter and more. I’m not sure I’ve always done it with grace, but that’s another story… ;-)

  • Demosthenes

    This posting is a mixed blessing for many of us. While I’m delighted for your personal fortune, I will miss you (despite Mr. Green doing an excellent job).

    Best wishes for your new career!

  • mirth

    Oh, I absolutely agree 2karmanot! John is beloved in the commenting community because he was part of it.

  • Moderator3

    Aww, shucks.

  • Thank you, 2karmanot. Rest assured that we will continue in our efforts under the new leadership.

  • Ron Robertson

    Yes, we certainly don’t want anything to challenge your foolish belief system, do we? I know it’s on pretty shaky ground, since it’s based on nothing valid at all.

  • gypsylibrarian

    You will be missed, but I wish you the very best of good fortune.

  • Figured something was going on! Say hi in NYC! Welcome!

  • 2karmanot

    Agreed!

  • Indigo

    Sasha is fully capable of filling any void that might turn up.

  • Indigo

    I hope so.

  • Indigo

    I think part of the success is the long term commenters who’ve taken the time to shape their thoughts and to interact with grace and reason with others in this blog. John has been the formative energy for nearly a decade and a half but his manner has always been welcoming to others, to their thoughts, and to the interactions among us. I think that energy is sustainable and I look forward to a continuing conversation here.

  • 2karmanot

    And Mods, please know you are on our hero’s list too—–incredible effort and work you do to temper our tempers and troll stomp when necessary!

  • Indigo

    You’ve been around quite a while. I always check out what you’ve got to say.

  • 2karmanot

    John’s our hero and we are so appreciative for the voice that gave our desire for equal and human rights a powerful shout out!

  • Indigo

    About.com? Uf-da! I forgot about that part. So much water under the bridge, scary!

  • 2karmanot

    YES!

  • 2karmanot

    Bingo!

  • 2karmanot

    There is a fly in your soup Bubba and Oh, did you see the waiter hoc a lunger in it?

  • 2karmanot

    East side, West side, Village, Uptown, Downtown—-what an exciting and dynamic city—-perfect for John and his many talents! Still, there will long be an emptiness here without him. Jon is an excellent choice though and I admire his cogent summations and choices of topic.

  • 2karmanot

    Same here Mirth—-also good to see you back!

  • 2karmanot

    Saw Gaius on Digby’s recently

  • StraightGrandmother

    So that is it, huh? I have been wondering about you, I have missed you on Twitter.
    You have been so quiet. But forward & onward. Onward to this new chapter in your life.
    I am not a long time reader that goes way back like so many others here, I’m a relatively new reader.
    During the time I have been reading you, your greatest work was on the Russians. Particularly Russian LGBT oppression and persecution. Nobody covered that like you did, you broke so many important torture stories. You were really GREAT John. You made a huge difference in alerting the world to the oppression and persecution of gay Russians and the Russian legislators & Putin who are perpetrating that.
    I guess we can’t keep you to ourselves, gotta spring you, set you free to make the whole world better.
    You already made the world a better place through your writings at AmericaBlog, you did.
    Best of Luck to you John, best BEST of LUCK!

  • 2karmanot

    I have always been impressed with the way John handles BS and guff—-just amazing his grace of intellect and steadfast dedication to the principles of human rights. Another thing I have always admired about John is his emotive qualities and sensitivity—-the willingness to dive in and join the comments. I think his recipe for troll stew is delicious! “Συγχαρητήρια”

  • 2karmanot

    So true, I always look for their comments!

  • 2karmanot

    Wow John, what exciting news and new beginnings for you. Congratulations! Please drop by now and then at the old haunt with update pics of you and Ms. Sasha.

  • It’s ok, I didn’t take it in a bad way :-)

  • B00Z

    Thanks for your years of fighting for rights for all in the gay community. I wish you much success in your new career! Please keep us posted through this blog.

  • Czigmund St. Ardust

    Congrats on moving on John, I was wondering why the post rate had slowed. I’ve had your blog in an RSS feeder for 12 years, and will miss you perspectives.

    I’m sorry if my first draft sounded directly accusatory, I edited it to try and change the emphasis from you and focus on the movement in general.

  • Wow you and Indigo win the award for longest readers!

  • Well, rest assured that the atheists have Jon Green on their side. And my sensitivity to civil rights, and the downtrodden, didn’t arise because I felt I needed allies, it came about because I recognized the way I was being treated, and extrapolated tht to others. So I don’t think I’ll lose my respect, and concern, for other civil rights. It may, however, be an issue for other more young who don’t grow up feeling as oppressed.

  • Czigmund St. Ardust

    This is a discouraging development that I fear will be repeated quite often by prominent LGBT activists over the next few years. I predict that “We’ve won” will be a rallying cry for people who espouse equality to walk away with their personal piles of winnings, leaving other oppressed minorities to rebuild or start civil rights efforts from scratch.

    For example, public disdain and private discrimination are still facts of life for atheists in this country, and it is still acceptable to express distrust/hatred of atheism in public. People commonly add qualifiers to their anti-Islam hate speech because at least the Muslims believe in SOME deity. But Atheists? Send them to camps and 90% of America would either applaud or shrug. We could use some help changing that, and the LGBT community has the freshest ideas, demonstrably successful strategies for doing so.

    Don’t walk away. Please?

  • It’s going to be difficult. The work is akin to being a government worker, in this case international civil service. And our jobs are above politics. So while I could still theoretically blog, it can’t be about politics. :-(

  • cleos_mom

    There will have to be a new round of court cases due to the “religious liberty” gimmick; but I suspect that it won’t be taken seriously until the holy discrimination extends to hospitals. And it isn’t difficult to guess who the Libertarian party would be supporting.

  • cleos_mom

    “We’ve won. The civil rights of gays are now an inevitability in America.”

    It will be eventually but this kind of overconfidence is sure to delay it.

  • I hope that you’ll still contribute an occasional post to AmericaBlog. Otherwise, best wishes — sounds wonderful.

  • HeartlandLiberal

    Congratulations. Sounds like a dream move, to me, and a fulfillment of years of work that helped lead to the opportunity. 51 is still young, many years ahead of you I hope of productive work and positive accomplishments. I will miss your commentary, and that of other regulars on this blog. It has always been on my list of five blogs to read every day in order to keep my finger on the pulse of what is really happening in the world, and what the real issues are. One question: do you have plans to continue publishing commentary publicly on issues of politics and civil rights? Surely there is a way for you to continue to occasionally pop up with commentary, e.g. as guest on some other blog?

  • Indigo

    All the best, John. I’ve been following your work since that electronic newsletter from D.C. that you started back in the 90s, always impressed by your dedication and the range of your insight. I’m confident the U.N. is a good fit for you. Enjoy it!

  • hidflect

    This sounds accusatory, but I’m worried once the LGBT community get all the rights they fought for thanks to progressives they’ll no longer feel the need to identify with the party of workers with crusty nails, minorities (many of whom dislike gay people) and the lowly paid poor and unemployed in order to roll over to the Libertarian party who better represent their financial interests. I hope LGBT’s remember who fought for them in the past over who will cut their taxes in the future.

  • HarpoSnarx

    Thank you and all best.

  • Hue-Man

    I won’t repeat my (too frequent) lament for departing bloggers, only express my appreciation for the valuable work you have done on our behalf and to wish you well in your new opportunity.

    I’ll miss reports from your annual sojourn in France and I continue to worry about your health problems.

    I don’t share your optimism about LGBT rights where they matter most – at work, as tenants, and in services. The recent spate of anti-LGBT laws at the state level are the tip of the iceberg – treating lesbians and gays as equals will be one of the casualties of this backlash.

    I would appreciate if your talented staff could put together a proper show reel of your greatest hits. For example, your Barilla story gained world-wide mainstream media coverage yet you failed to take the victory lap. I’ll quote the Washington Post from last November:

    “Barilla has journeyed from gay rights pariah to poster child — on Wednesday it received a perfect score from a prominent gay rights group that rates companies on their gay-friendliness. It is an about-face that highlights how companies, which typically shy away from controversy, are increasingly being forced to take sides in the cultural battle over gay rights and same-sex marriage — and how decisively pro-gay forces have gained the upper hand.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/human-rights-campaign-says-barilla-has-turned-around-its-policies-on-lgbt/2014/11/18/9866efde-6e92-11e4-8808-afaa1e3a33ef_story.html
    http://americablog.com/tag/pasta for those who missed it.

  • billylost

    it’s been wonderful reading your thoughts. Good luck with your next steps.

  • silas1898

    Good luck John! It’s been a pleasure reading this blog for many years.

  • Don Chandler

    Loved reading your columns, John. I’ll miss the Sasha updates. Funniest memory, when you reached high in your photo op with Michelle Obama…I’m sure you are not going that far in reinventing yourself.

  • crazymonkeylady

    Love and Kisses on your Dream Come True! Bravo!

  • Yeah, that was fun ;-)

  • Wow, you do go back :-) And while I’ll still be online, I’ll have to take a respite from politics. (Though dog blogging is fine!)

    As for Gaius, your guess is as good as mine. He just up and left without saying a word.

  • judybrowni

    Thank you, for your words and your heart and your activism.

    We’ll miss you.

  • Crap and woo-hoo! Happy trails John. Americablog has been a treasure.

  • Congrats on the new job! I will miss your blog posts. At least still tweet occasionally.

  • mirth

    Oh wow, thanks for the link!
    Finest writer on the web.

  • Gayrevels

    Best of luck John! I have loved your blog for many years and will miss your point of view. Enjoy your new life!!!

  • GarySFBCN

    Wow, many changes! Congratulations with the new job and new life. Thanks for all you’ve done and best of luck! Don’t be a stranger!

  • Steve_in_CNJ

    John, thanks for the many years of activism and investigative blogging. I depended on you and a few others to show me which way the arc of the moral universe was bending. All the best in the new career.

  • 2patricius2

    John, I’ve enjoyed following your LGBT advocacy since I discovered your writings in the late Nineties. You have made major contributions over those years. You’ve brought some great writers to us through this blog. I’ve missed reading your comments recently, but I’m very happy that you are moving forward with a new chapter in your life. New chapters open up new opportunities and can be very exciting. I know that with your talents you will make great contributions to the UN. Congratulations, and I wish you the best.

  • just_AC

    I emailed Gaius a month or so ago and this is what he said: “Thanks, I’ve been writing at a number of places, with cross-postings. For a global archive, try here:
    http://gaiuspublius.tumblr.com/

  • AlexanderHamiltonsGhost

    As someone who started reading back in your first year and who basically now follows only AmericaBlog after years of intense blog reading, let me say that while I’m sad to see you go, I’m glad to see you leaving for such a fantastic opportunity. At the end of the day, this is great news, John.

    A pity your new job (I assume) won’t allow for much of an online presence from you. Hopefully somehow we’ll hear from you again.

  • PianoGuy

    and thanks!

  • sonoitabear

    Best of luck, John, and thank you for all you’ve done!

  • TheOtherWA

    Congratulations on the new job! You have to grab opportunities to create change in new ways when they present themselves.

  • guestferd

    God bless John Aravosis, who fights for the people, and wins. He’s an actual American hero.

  • How very sad to be you.

  • The_Fixer

    Thank you, dear!

  • mirth

    While I’m still dabbing a tissue at my eyes I should say that yours is an avatar I always look for on the scroll down.

  • Moderator17

    Ditto!

  • davidinchelseama

    John – Americablog was one of the first blogs I ever read and ever bookmarked. It’s been a staple on my bookmark bar ever since 2003. Thanks for this wonderful resource and for all you’ve done to help our community. Best of luck to you, sir.

  • I discovered Americablog in 2003 during the fight to for LGBT non-discrimination at Mizzou, which we won. I never dreamed in a million years that we’d see equal marriage rights spread so quickly in this country so soon after the 2004 election.

    Thanks for your part in in it, John, and all the best to you!

  • mirth

    I looked at its history too and thought, Yep, this is just the behavior one expects from someone who hangs on those types of sites. Even in its insignificance here I don’t like that John may see its comment, but then again it’s sort of a badge of honor to be disliked by low-functioning numbskulls like this one.

  • keirmeister

    I’ll miss your commentary. But hey, welcome to NYC and I hope you enjoy the ability to get almost any food you want at 2:00am!

  • Lordwhorfin

    Me too, me too, lurking since forever. One of the first sites I found after Bartcop and The Horse of Blessed Memory. Good night and good luck!

  • Zorba

    Well, aren’t you the little pissy one? Nobody’s forcing you to read anything here, you know.
    Go back and suck up to the right-wing, homophobic blogs, which is apparently where you spend most of your time, based on your comment history.

  • quax

    All the best in your new endeavor! And thank you for all the work and money you put into this fantastic blog. You truly made a difference.

  • Zorba

    And thank you, too, mirth.
    Stay well, my friend. And keep on keeping on.

  • JohnAGJ

    John A.,

    Over the years I’ve disagreed with on… oh sooooo much, but I do want to thank you for all that you’ve done on gay rights. Sure you’ve made mistakes, we all do, but your efforts were grand overall. Go to NYC and live your dream. Being happy with the one you love and stepping away from the daily political spats is a wise thing to do – for everyone. I do hope you will write now and then if not here then elsewhere, when you are so inclined and have the time of course. All my best to you!

  • docsterx

    I’m so glad that you got the UN position and will finally have some additional financial and medical stability. Heartfelt congratulations and much success with the new position!

    Of course, the other side of the coin is that, because of your career change, you won’t be sharing your talents here on AB, which is a real loss. I always looked forward to reading your articles. I appreciated what your background, education and perspective brought to them. I echo many of the others below in saying that I’m hoping you’ll find some time to do an occasional piece to post here in the future.

    I’ve read through the comments below and you have an amazing collection of fans who will also be missing you.

    Best of luck!

  • mirth

    Maybe it’s because I’m feeling nostalgic, end of an era and all that, and a tad weepy, but when I saw your avatar and thought about our relationship, both working and personal, with John and others behind the scene, as well as all the tremendous commenters we have seen pass through these threads and the same who remain, this popped into my head – sappy, I know, but sincerely expressed:

    Thank you for being a friend
    Traveled down the road and back again
    Your heart is true
    You’re a pal and a confident

    And if you threw a party
    Invited everyone you knew
    You would see the
    Biggest gift would be from me
    And the card attached would say

    Thank you for being a friend

  • Art Hock

    Good riddance!

  • just_AC

    John, a lot of people have said things better than I could have, but I will still share my thoughts.

    As a 61 Year old, straight, married guy out in the wilderness of rural Michigan, your blog still speaks to me from the younger, gay,single guy in the nation’s capital.

    Americablog is always the second thing I bring up in the morning as I enjoy my coffee (gotta go to google news first to see if any vital thing has happened!) I enjoy reading the articles and have been impressed with Jon’s input lately.

    I know as I go through the day reading articles that I put a filter on to see if you would enjoy sharing those articles and feel gratified at the times you have shared my leads.

    I think maybe the best part of Americablog is the insights I gain from following the comments. Very rarely does the commenting dissolve into flame wars and I know the frequent commenters bring something new to the table each time instead of rehashing the same ole, same ole. For that, I thank you and the tireless moderators controlling the discourse.

    Good luck in your endeavors in the Big Apple and I hope you at least keep posting for us on Facebook.

    Just_AC

  • The_Fixer

    Oh, I remember that one! Good times! :)

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    John, thanks for keeping us informed. I’m especially thankful for Gannongate. Not only was it politically important, but it was a helluva lot of fun. That was a major gotcha.

  • The_Fixer

    Oh boy, conflicting emotions.

    A bit sad that we won’t hear from you.

    Grateful that you’ve been a lion in the blog world and in the realm of LGBTQ rights.

    Happy that you’re sitting on more solid ground, taking on a new adventure and getting to do new things.

    And grateful again that you’ve left the blog in great hands, and grateful for the continuing discussions that intelligent, insightful people will have here.

    I’ve been reading Americablog longer than I’ve been commenting here. I’m trying to remember how long it’s been, seems to me that it was sometime after Bush the Younger was slammed into the presidency. I remember, and thank you for, the many great posts and your heartfelt and effective activism.

    Don’t be a stranger! I’ll miss your contributions, but am happy you’re doing better. May good fortune smile upon you for many years to come.

  • David Campbell

    Congratulations, John! I’ve enjoyed your blog for years. I’m pleased to hear that your dreams were resurrected and you have found a new adventure. Wishing you all the best.

  • Wendy Mitchell

    John: AmericaBlog was one of the first political blogs I found back in the dark Bush administration days. Everyday, the news you published would make me feel both hopeful and impotent. I will miss your voice, but for the most wonderful of reasons. Congratulations. It couldn’t happen to a nicer guy!

  • Larry Evans

    Congratulations and good luck, sir. You will be missed, but I find it
    hard to believe that this will be the last we hear from you entirely…

  • Zorba

    Oh, we will miss you, John! But Jon is doing a great job, and I will certainly continue to read ABlog regularly.
    Best wishes for you in your new job, many thanks for the wonderful job you have done over the years, and come back and visit and comment from time to time, and let us know how you are doing.
    Oh, and also, how Sasha likes New York City, as well. ;-)

  • Ron Robertson

    Congratulations, John! Wishing you well in your new job, and they are lucky indeed to have you! Enjoy New York City! Thanks for all you’ve done, and glad you’ve left Americablog in great hands!

  • KingCranky

    I’ll miss your posts John, but certainly understand the need for something new, and hopefully more well-paying in your future.

    Double thanks for letting the blog keep going, it provides a badly needed outlet to counter the ignorant rightward drift in our society.

    Your posts from your yearly forays into France, highlighting the absurdities of our health-care system-as opposed to the well-run system you were able to utilize, are still a must when the issue is efficient vs. inefficient delivery of medical care and prescriptions.

    All the best to you, hopefully you’ll still drop us a line here from time to time.

  • Thank you for your service.

  • goulo

    Wow! I was missing seeing posts from you lately. I’m glad the reason for it is good news, not bad news! Good luck to you, and thanks for all the interesting essays, investigative articles, and good activism!

    I do hope you’ll at least write the occasional article here still.

  • mirth

    I’m going to miss you, John, and the good stuff you’ve shared with us through the years.
    You did make a difference!

    It was a pleasure to have worked for you. Ditto, to have shared an enduring friendship…however tested at times. ;)

    I am especially thankful that, rather than just shutting down the blog as most often happens for similar reasons as yours, the provocative, invigorating, informative, sometimes hilarious Ab thread conversations will continue and that there is still a gathering place here for some of the very best and best informed people I have interacted with online.

    Likewise, you have chosen a worthy successor and a stellar writer in Jon Green and that also deserves my heartfelt thanks.

    Best of luck to you, Sir.

  • Moderator3

    Ditto.

  • emjayay

    Just curious…what position exactly?
    United Nations Lord High Commissioner for Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Transgender Internet Related Affairs?

  • Jewelry? I love that!

  • Yes, I didn’t even mention the health plan. It seems my medical tourism days are thankfully over :)

  • Well, thanks :) Though hopefully Jon and Anthony will be able to cultivate new writers that share our vision, and writing abilities. You never want an organization to be solely about one person, because at some point we all leave our jobs, one way or another ;-)

  • Ninja0980

    Thank you for your blogging and good luck on your new job!

  • GlennF

    So, that’s it, just like that, no more John Aravosis at Americablog?

    I don’t understand. What is the purpose of this blog without John? Americablog IS John Aravosis. As far as I’m concerned, no one anywhere writes as well, clearly and persuasively about LGBT civil rights issues as John does.

    Congratulations on your new job, John But if at all possible, come back and write for us whenever your schedule allows. :)

  • dcinsider

    I thought something was up when I had not seen your byline for the past few weeks.

    You are an amazing American, John. You cannot truly appreciate the good you have done with this blog, and the positive impact you have had on so many lives. You should be proud of yourself.

    I wish you the best of luck and only regret that our paths did not cross here in DC. NYC promises a new adventure. Be well and be happy.

  • Well done all around.

  • Quilla

    Love you, John! Best wishes in your new life. Sounds exciting! And be a good dog, Sasha.

  • hauksdottir

    Was wondering about the silence, and hoping that it wasn’t the flu or worse. Glad to read that you have been busy with the change to a new career and new location.

    Before I flamed out, I had 4 careers, self-trained for each of them. A bit scary, but each time confirms that we can do, learn, become, anything we want. Last year, at age 64, I started making jewelry. We are never too old to try something new.

    You have half a lifetime ahead of you, plenty of time to achieve this and other dreams. You are a good man, and I hope for the very best for you.

  • cambridgemac

    John, I am so happy for you. Thank you for Americablog, one of only two blogs that I read every day (Eschaton is the other), and for your creative and effective advocacy. You and the team you’ve assembled are a treasure. I will miss you a lot and hope that you find a way to stay connected to your fans and supporters. Many many thanks

  • You did quite well, too.

  • Thank you John , and good luck ! It has been a privilege.

  • percysowner

    I have followed this blog for years. I totally understand your decision and I wish you all the luck in the world.

  • Thanks for everything you’ve done over the years.

  • FLL

    Becca said it better than I could have.

  • I rather guessed this was coming, and I for one am honored to have known you, spoken with you any number of times on the phone, and written for your blog. I am really glad to hear you’ve landed on your feet, as it were, and it really does sound like this is a big step up for you. That’s wonderful!

    Over the years, you and the crew here have accomplished some amazing things, including breaking several stories long before the mainstream and traditional media. You also created a community of commenters, which is something not many blogs can do successfully.

    We’ll miss you, very much. But I do hope perhaps you might stop by here from time to time, even if just in the comments, to let us know how you’re doing.

    Godspeed, John, and good luck.

  • FLL

    You’ve definitely made your mark, John. I started reading this blog in June, 2009 when you and Joe Sudbay posted your series of articles about the unfortunate brief in support of DOMA written by W. Scott Simpson, a Mormon Bush holdover at the DOJ. Your articles really pushed the issue—and civil rights in general—into the mainstream media and mainstream political circles. You changed the conversation again (along with Harvey Fierstein and Dan Savage) during the 2013 boycott of Russian vodka in response to Russia’s newly adopted anti-gay-propaganda law. All I can say is “good job.”

    The international arena will be interesting in the near future. Remember that bigots in Asia and Africa are nothing without a nuclear-armed superpower—Putin’s Russia—as their patron. As Ukraine goes, so goes Russia. The average Russian doesn’t care that much what Americans or Western Europeans think, but they care very deeply what Ukrainians think. The two countries are born of a single ancestor, medieval Kievan Rus. If Ukraine is on board with basic human rights, the same is inevitable in Russia.

  • Don’t worry about it. Change is good. With endings come new beginnings.

  • HKAnders

    Congratulations, John! A regular salary, health insurance and retirement ain’t nothin’ to sneeze at.
    God bless!

  • A_nonymoose

    Good for you John! I have a friend who, upon graduating law school, looked forward to a life of helping others in non-profit organizations. She was almost immediately slapped down with the reality of a lack of paying jobs in this sector, so she’s now doing legal grunt work for a large health care organization. I’ll have to give you as an example to her to never give up. :)

  • Sorry I’ve been MIA the past month. I was solidifying things with the new job, and just didn’t have the time to write. :(

  • Wow, that’s a long time Joe :)

  • ElaineMay

    Congrats on the new gig, John!
    Will miss you here and please know that your work was very appreciated.

  • AndyinChicago

    It’s sad that you’re leaving, but I’m glad to hear you’re excited about a new job, new place, and new adventure. Thank you for your service to the community and all the work you’ve done advancing not only the LGBT rights cause but the cause of progressives in general.

  • UncleBucky

    Thanks, John! You’re on your way!

  • I think I speak for all of us Moderators, John, when I say that it has been a privilege and a pleasure to work with you. Best of luck in your new job, and thank you for all that you have done.

  • St Martyr

    It’s far far from over. Some of you white gays are gonna eat your words. No wonder Madonna thinks that lgbt acceptance in society is better then women! This rhetoric about ‘We’ve won the cultural war’ etc etc, I wonder what lgbt people who do NOT live on the east or west cost think?

  • MileHighJoe

    Thank you for your service to our community. I remember first noticing you back in, I think, 1997 and remember thinking “This guys is saying everything that’s on my mind, only better than I ever could.” I’ve been following you ever since. Congratulations on what seems to be a very wise decision.

  • S1AMER

    Best wishes!

    And thanks for your years of service at AMERICAblog.

  • Kansachusetts

    John, thank you for years of service to people of all persuasions. We have greatly profited from your insight, and we’ll miss it!. Best wishes in your new career and in your quest for a life where only the cats eat cat food.

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