Authors of ‘Get (Gay) Married’ at WeHo’s Book Soup Dec. 9
You might recognize Jared Milrad and Nathan Johnson from Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign videos, which featured stories of real-life Americans facing big changes. For the long-time couple, it was their pending marriage in 2015 that got the producers’ attention. The activist couple watched their story spread internationally, and wrote a book, “So You Want to Get (Gay) Married,” which they’ll talk about at Book Soup in West Hollywood on Friday, Dec. 9, from 7-8:30 p.m.
Jared (pictured left), an attorney and LGBTQ advocate who set off on the path of activism at a young age (he became an animal activist and vegan at age 14), spoke to Goweho.com’s Laurie Schenden about the book, the video and his latest project, the “We Won’t Go Back” campaign.
The book is available through Amazon, Kindle and at Jared & Nate.
Goweho.com: What inspired you to write the book?
Jared: Getting involved in Hillary’s campaign, and getting international attention, and wanting to share the positivity about American equality were the main inspirations for the book. It was a pretty significant summer for us personally and historically as well.
Goweho.com: How did you get included in the Clinton campaign commercials?
Jared: A friend of mine, who knew videographers from President Obama’s 2012 campaign, said they were looking for people who were going through big life changes. Our friend had known that we were going to get married. That’s how we got involved.
The interviewer was great, [asking] about our relationship, how we met, issues we care about, why we support Hillary. It was all volunteers, all real people. I thought it was a well-placed look at everyday Americans and what their lives are like and what their struggles are.
Goweho.com: After the election you founded the We Won’t Go Back campaign in response to the outcome?
Jared: Yes. Given in the wake of the election the many fears and worries and concerns about the country, particularly among communities of color, the LGBTQ community, immigrant community and others, I wanted to create this campaign to provide a space … and a campaign for Americans of all backgrounds who are committed to inclusivity, equality and dignity and respect for all. And also to get people more engaged in the democratic process, not only voting … but also contacting your Congressman, going to town hall meetings, writing letters to the editor, all those things we need to be doing.
Goweho.com: Since Donald Trump’s election, how do you personally feel?
Jared: I do share many of those worries and concerns. I mean obviously my ability and my right to get married and be treated equally in the eyes of the law was something that was hard fought, and for generations well before me. Our generation, the Millennials in particular, have been the recipients of a lot of that activism.
We do very much realize there’s a lot at stake now in terms of marriage but also in terms of broader LGBTQ rights, particularly when you hear about hate crimes.
Goweho.com: Are you optimistic despite the divisiveness?
Jared: “I do feel optimistic. I think I share to some degree the Obama brand of optimism–which is that there are struggles, there are disappointments and setbacks, but history has a way of zigzagging, in terms of going forward and going backward.
You just have to choose your fights and continue to stand up for the values and the views that we believe in. There may be a point when we look back and say this is the point where people really started to speak up, have their voices heard. This is not a spectator sport and we really have to get into the fight to achieve what we want to achieve.
For more about their story see Jared & Nate.