The Last Page with Jason Leclerc

By : Rick Claggett
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What kind of writing do you do for Watermark?

Opinion and editorial.

When did you develop a passion for writing?

First grade. I won a creative writing contest for “Stinky, the Skunk that Didn’t Stink.” I understood what it meant to be different before there was a word in my vocabulary for it. What made you want to write for Watermark?

My dear friend, Billy (the single most earnestly and stalwartly Progressive partisan I’ve ever known), who was the editor at the time asked me to. He knew that he needed a foil. I could not decline such an opportunity to let the world witness our debates.

What is your favorite thing about writing for Watermark?

As a conservative, it’s easy to be straw-manned and cartooned by those with opposing political views. Watermark shows that ideas, even those in conflict with its own natural self-interested tendencies, matter. This gives Watermark a special integrity that similar publications don’t have. I appreciate the opportunity to be a voice that approaches issues differently.

What is the name of your column with Watermark?

“The Other Side of Life.”

How did you come up with the name for your column?

I didn’t. Billy did.

What do you like writing about the most?

That love conquers and that we have more that unites us than divides us.

What is your favorite LGBTQ Event?

Walking hand-in-hand with my Pally (the nickname for my spouse) through the supermarket. Living our truth and exhibiting our love publicly and normally is our weekly pride parade.

What is your favorite thing about the local LGBTQ community?

The diversity within it. The local community is a microcosm of the nation. We have our extremists and rabble-rousers on both sides of the political spectrum, but for the most part we can engage on a human level.

What would you like to see improved in the LGBTQ community?

I think there is a cavalier attitude by the new generation of LGBTQs toward the history and sacrifices of our gay and lesbian forebears. The social, political and cultural realities that many take for granted were paid for with martyred human lives. It’s hard to fully grasp the AIDS crisis, for example, and how an entire generation was nearly decimated—how there is a hole in our collective memory. I wish there was more interaction between the survivors and this current generation to make the de-stigmatization and near-cure for AIDS in America more relevant in our consciousness.

What do you want the Watermark readers to know about you?

I know that I am not perfect, not even close; I know that I am a hypocrite and that my words don’t always match my actions. But I try every day to be a better person.

What advice would you give your younger self?

1. Be nice. 2. Don’t let people take pictures of you naked.

 

Watermark is the collective product of a team of incredibly hardworking individuals. Over the next series of issues, we’re using this space to introduce each member of our staff and contributors to you. When you see us out and about in the community, stop and say, “Hello.” We’d love to meet you.

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