It was the week before Christmas and everyone was outraged.

Early in the week, gay activists were disappointed that a strong gay candidate for Labor Secretary in the Obama Cabinet was passed over in favor of California Representative Hilda Solis (Democrat). The decision took the wind out of the sails of gay politicos, leaving them with little to cheer for.

Openly lesbian Mary Beth Maxwell had been considered a strong contender for the position. Maxwell is the founding executive director of American Rights at Work, and had helped line up support for the pro-union Employee Free Choice Act.

“It's now clear that President Obama's top appointees will gather in a Cabinet Room that does not reflect the living rooms, board rooms or rooms of worship across this country,” said Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund President Chuck Wolfe. “Openly LGBT people are accepted and involved in nearly all aspects of American life, but they still will not have a place at the table at the highest reaches of their government.”

Frustration met anger at the church door of Reverend Rick Warren on Wednesday when President-elect Barack Obama chose the anti-gay pastor to give the invocation at his inauguration.

Openly gay Massachusetts Representative Barney Frank called it a “mistake,” while Human Rights Campaign president Joe Solmonese said it was “disrespectful” of gays.

A prominent leader in the evangelical movement, Warren supports the outlawing of abortion in all cases and is a staunch gay rights opponent. But his moderate tone on AIDS, poverty and climate change have made him controversial among social conservatives.

Gay activists say Warren is homophobic. They point out that his Saddleback megachurch bans gays and lesbians from attendance, he supports the controversial ex-gay movement that claims gays can be “cured” through prayer, and, most importantly, he supported the passage of Proposition 8 – the California constitutional amendment that yanked back the right of gay and lesbian couples from marrying in the state.

Obama defended his choice at a Thursday press conference, where he said: “I am a fierce advocate of equality for gay and lesbian Americans. It is something that I have been consistent on, and I intend to continue to be consistent on during my presidency. What I've also said is that it is important for America to come together, even though we may have disagreements on certain social issues.”

What everyone is sensing, but no one is articulating, is the real loss of trust going on this week. Warren is our enemy and we thought the Obama administration would be our friend. And there might be some real buyer remorse going on in the gay community which is asking itself: How far can we trust this guy?

Anger erupted again when the United States refused to sign on to a United Nations resolution that called for the universal decriminalization of being gay.

Thursday's pro-gay resolution was met with an equally forceful, Arab-backed statement opposing it. It said, “[Decriminalizing homosexuality could lead] to the social normalization, and possibly the legitimization, of many deplorable acts including pedophilia.”

When U.S. diplomats chose neither resolution to sign on to, it left us in the uncomfortable position of being the only Western nation not backing the pro-gay resolution.

The Vatican denounced the pro-gay resolution saying they feared it would lead to gay marriage.

But things were a bit sunnier in California, where Attorney General Jerry Brown has reversed course and decided he will seek to have Proposition 8 invalidated.

Brown previously has said he would defend the anti-gay measure.

“It's outrageous,” Frank Schubert, campaign manager for Yes-on-8, told the Los Angeles Times.

And here's a recap of the ten most compelling gay stories of 2008. Happy New Year!

The Gay Slant is a weekly feature of On Top Magazine. Walter Weeks is writer for On Top and can be reached at