Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Created

Alright, alright, alright.

I try to suppress it, but sometimes I just can't fight the overwhelming urge I have to say what I am really thinking. I try to be all politically correct and unoffensive to everyone, but there are many problems with that. First of all, it's just not me. And it's way boring to be so safe and middle of the road.

Every so often I climb up on my soapbox and let it fly.

Today's one of them days.

So I'll warn you all in advance in case I offend anyone with my opinions. Truth is, they're mine. And while I'm a lot of things, I'm not terribly apologetic about things like this.

I've spent a lot of time lately in a place that is perceived to be liberal. Leftist. Progressive.

Except it isn't.

At least on one issue.

Gay marriage.

I'm all in favor of it. 100% unabashedly in favor of it. I'm not one of those fence sitting moderate liberals who will say things like they can have a civil union, we just won't call it marriage. Let them have it all.

There are so many reasons why I am in favor of it. So, so many. Not the least of which is that fact that marriage isn't something that us straight people can have claimed perfection on. Really, the divorce rate is hovering around 50%....we so don't have it figured out.

I don't understand why people care so much about what other people do with their lives. A lot of people always go to the explanation that it will confuse children, teach them to be gay and so on. Um, not so much. There are families at school with gay parents. My kids just know that another kid has two moms or two dads. It's never been an issue. It isn't a big deal for the kids. It's a big deal for the parents.

Marriage isn't marriage without calling it marriage. Anything less is not the same. A civil union is not the same. A contract is not the same.

Then there is the whole all men are created equal thing. Which I happen to believe to be the quintessential line in our American history, the one that we should hold in highest esteem and should strive to reach. It should be the goal of our society to emulate that one phrase.

Throw in the fact that being straight or gay is what it is. You are either gay or straight. Period. You don't wake up one day and decide to be gay. You don't watch a movie and decide to be gay. You don't touch a gay person and become gay. So on and so forth. There may be a very limited number of circumstances which could shape adult sexuality, but they do not explain the vast majority of sexual orientations.

Some may suppress their true sexuality, live in denial of it, try to pretend. I knew a man who did that well into his 70's. He had a wife and five children and countless grandchildren before he finally stopped living a lie. He became who he really was.

I know that a lot of my feelings on this are a direct result of the experiences I have had in my life. The people I've known. The things I have seen.

I've had friends I knew were gay since we were kids. I promise you it isn't something that someone chooses as an adult.

I worked many years for an AIDS clinic. I saw countless men, disowned and discarded by their families, thrown aside. Most lost contact long before they were diagnosed, back when they came out to their families. I saw some of those men in their last days, since I helped so many of them write their wills and their medical directives. And I can't tell you how many of them wished and hoped for one last chance to see their father, their mother, their brother. Heartbreaking. The only word for it.

No human being should ever be made to feel that way. Ever.

The thing that disturbs me the most about the way those men were and probably still are treated, and the current shift in attitude in this country against gay marriage, is that the justification for the hatred is almost always seated in religion.

I'm an intelligent person. But I cannot find how judgment of another, disowning a child, discrimination and hatred, how any of that could ever be seen as something sanctioned by god. Jesus was a man of kindness and welcoming. Of love and understanding. I just don't see the logical connection.

It frustrates me to no end to see such judgment by people. No one is perfect. No one is without flaw. And none of us is fit to decide how others should live their lives.

All men are created equal.

Let's live up to that.

6 comments:

  1. I feel the same way Kelly. And being a middle school teacher, I can tell you, I had some students whom I knew were gay before they really came to accept it themselves. One came out to his parents in high school (we still talk)...it was really hard for him. His parents I don't think have ever really accepted him, but yep, at age 11 I could tell and frankly I knew and deep down so did the other kids and the gay child themselves.

    I think what really pushed my hubby to finally marry was that he grew up and that feeling of invisibility that we wear as young people wore off and the idea that his parents would be making any medical decisions instead of me, the one person who knew him and loved him unconditionally wouldn't, pushed him. Let them marry, divorce, whatever. Why is it my problem...and hey in some states the miscegenation laws are still on the books, never repealed, so it is illegal for me to be married to my hubby in I think, Oregon for example.(I'd have to pull out the right book to find it..to verify)

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  2. Amen, Kelly. I couldn't have said it better myself.

    More than half of my straight friends already have a divorce under their belt. Very unfortunate, but sadly, the statistic that more than half of marriages end in divorce is totally apparent.

    Funny enough, my gay friends are all in current relationships that are now going on 20 years, 12 years, and 10 years. Strong and solid.

    And yet their relationships can't be recognized. Sigh.

    I hope my marriage follows in THEIR suit.

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  3. Kelly- I like how you think. If there is supposed to be separation of church and state, the idea behind "marriage" should not be religously routed, therefore does it matter? Stop the discussion, this will eventually be legal so LET IT GO!!!! Mind your own business. I think it is so funny that for YEARS, we ignored what happened behind "the bedroom door."

    Oh wait, there goes my soapbox!

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  4. I'm probably the only one who disagrees. I am 100% fine with that. Yet, no words that I can put here or discussions I could have with any one-esp., those whom I live nearer, would change or really affect others minds. Unfortunately, most of society is highly infected by what many think is right. That's right, I said "infected". It would be easy for someone to say the same of me and my opinions. Arguing will never get anyone anywhere. Let's just hope when we die, we are truly at peace with the life we lived.

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  5. Here's the thing Marie, I've helped people deal with the aftermath of being judged by those who deem themselves qualified.

    None of us is qualified to judge another. None.

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  6. Let's hope when we die we can face our Lord and proudly proclaim that, while we have not been perfect, we have tried our best to uphold His commandments to love each other and our neighbors as he has commanded. And let us always remember that judgment is and always should be reserved for He who is perfect, not for us who can only see a small glimpse of the lives of others. And most of all, let me hope that My Lord is more loving and accepting than some of His children, for He will show them the compassion and understanding that they were unable or unwilling to show to others. Pure love, regardless of gender, is one of the purest and most beautiful demonstrations of God amongst us. How anyone can presume to judge the love God creates is beyond me.

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