gay rights

Yes, Another Z Post

I think she finally got it. I’m glad she did. I’ve been trying to tell Z since I started that this is a collaboration. Yesterday, I sent her a copy of a comment I received about a previous post. Now she understands. I’ve been telling her that the inspiration is, at least, as important as the words themselves…

Here’s the point. Z is the reason I write these. They aren’t to make me feel good about myself. They aren’t to atone for some sense of guilt. They’re to persuade, mostly gently, people to see who I see. They’re to encourage people that think that everyone is against them. They exist to tell Christians that they can be for gay rights without compromising their faith. They are to make Z a real person and, by doing so, make the issues a “that person” a “us” and to remove the word “them”. For all of those reasons, Z is far more important than I am in our effort. Without her, this blog wouldn’t exist in the form or, for the reason, it does.

In the end, social issues aren’t changed because we mandate it. They are changed because of people finding out that we have more in common than we have differences. Always, since the first post about Marriage Equality, I’ve written about Z. I’ve tried to share her with anyone that would listen or read. Her life and who she is are the examples I use. She told me that she used herself to “educate”. I try to do the same. I try to convey a sense of who she is. I’ve been sparing with some details out of respect for her privacy and family. *editorial, that’s fine, those aren’t really needed* I’ve also tried to convey the love I have for her, her personality *editorial, quirky, smart, sarcastic, and smart-a$$ come to mind* and her character. I’ve been vocal about her being a veteran and a good mom. I’ll continue to do those things because she deserves them.

We, she and I and you, can change the world. We have to do it one person at a time. We have to educate. We can do it best by not being “in your face” but by being in your life. The way prejudice ends is by knowing someone and caring for them. Someday this won’t be an issue. *sigh* For now, though, it is. If I had a suggestion to y’all, it would be, live your life. Be who you are. Interact. If you are able and it is safe, let people know. The best way to convince someone is by your actions. Words, even these words, are cheap. Actions and lives make much more impact.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the issue isn’t “gay rights”. The issue is the rights of all citizens. It isn’t how we treat some random person that happens to be LBGT. How do we treat that citizen, that human? It is how do we treat that person right there? How do we treat Z? Perhaps I’m too close to it? I know my bias makes it personal. I know that’s how we win. We win when everyone like me has someone like Z in their world. If you can, be either of those. I know my world is a better place for having Z in it. Who would have ever thought that a straight, married, Christian man would have spent so much time writing about one person? It isn’t about me writing about LBGT issues. It is about and always for Z.

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It’s Not About Gay Rights…

*sigh*

What part of the word “citizens” is confusing? I read something that was a quote by Hannity that said religion was protected in the Constitution and being LBGT was not. Perhaps there’s a mental disconnect? The Constitution says “citizens”. It doesn’t ever use the word “Christians”. Not one time. So, yes, in essence, the comment was correct. It was also incorrect. The Constitution doesn’t address, specifically, the rights of any gender identity or sexual orientation. It says “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States”.

*sigh*

What happens at the end of our lives, besides dying? The process of dying. The medical care we require and the decisions that have to be made. I have someone that has the right and responsibility to make those for me, my wife. She knows what I want. She knows my heart. I trust her. She gets my stuff. Even if we didn’t have a will, she’d still get the stuff.

On the other hand, what about Z? Supposing she were married, her home state does not recognize it. Her wife would not be allowed to make the decisions. Her stuff, if she were intestate, would go to her family and not her wife. Her wife would not be given the dignity and respect, by the hospital, that she deserved.

Z is a citizen. I am a citizen. The Constitution states, plainly, that we have the same protections. Being gay does not make her any less than I am. Period. Saying we have “domestic partnership” laws doesn’t, for me, cut it. A “domestic partnership” is between a man and a dog. A marriage is what humans have.

*sigh*

Sometimes I wonder…I wonder if the parents of gay children see them as less than human? I wonder if the people that oppose equal rights for all citizens see some humans as not human and, thus, not citizens. *I really do not want to understand that mindset.*

I keep trying to be reasonable and rational. I try to figure out what goes through the minds of people that demand their “rights” and are unwilling to see that ALL citizens deserve the same rights. Honestly, being “reasonable and rational” is hard for me. I see someone I love, someone that has gone to war to defend the Constitution and me, being called less worthy than me. I’m not slamming the keys because Z is calmer about this than I am. She’s more patient…or resigned…than I am. If I had my way, we’d have made the changes last week or, last century.

It really isn’t that gay people want to be treated “just like real people”. It is that gay human citizens want the same rights as straight human citizens. It’s that the Constitution doesn’t say any different, no matter what people might think.

That’s the bottom line. I am a human citizen of the United States of America. I have rights and protections under the laws. Z is a human citizen of the United States of America. She should have the exact same rights and protections under the laws. To deny those to her is to say that she’s either not human or, not a citizen. Neither is correct, she is both…and a person worth respect.

Not “gay rights”. Citizen’s rights. That’s all.

I’m Drawing a Blank or, This Is What You Get Today

My life isn’t that rough. This is the mentally hardest thing I’ll do today. It’s just that life is deciding to be complicated. I’m typing these words without a clue what I’ll write. It’s just that I gave my word and I’ll keep it.

This page is a protest and a support.

The protest is against homophobia and hate. It is a support for a dear friend, Z, and her right to love without being discriminated against.

This is what I have, today. The unreasoning hate of any person for an act that is unseen, legal, and, frankly, none of your business is stupid. It makes you a busybody and a hypocrite. Why a hypocrite? Because, I’m sure, that there are parts of your life that fit that list that you don’t want to be judged for either.

Why is it in support of Z? Because she earned it by being the trustworthy, sarcastic, loving person that she is. Who cares what gender she is attracted to? Better to support her right not to be judged for it, than to hate her because of it. She hasn’t earned hate. She’s an upstanding citizen that believes in this country and its form of government, even when it tries to repress her. She’s also a human. Not some type of animal that can be denied basic human rights because of your prejudice. Besides that, she’s a dear friend and I don’t let friends be persecuted without speaking out for them.

In the end, her rights aren’t “gay rights”, they’re human rights. Either you support the concept for “equal protection under the law” for all human citizens or none.

Sitting on the Fence

I’m pondering on the nature of fences. Specifically, what does it take to stop sitting on one ? I’m not sure that there’s a conclusion for every case.

I know that there are issues that I will always remain apathetic about or will have decided that there are enough voices. Politics have worn me down. *editorial, I have no intent of going into party politics or debating the merits of either political party* I also think that there are some issues that have enough voices that mine is lost in the crowd. I may have a view there and might vote that way but, it really doesn’t mean I’m going to be vocal. 

Some times, I just don’t care. There are Issues that are not personal enough, will not affect me, or do not have a solution that makes enough sense to use. Other issues are really “non-issues” that have convinced people that they exist. Then there are issues that I have decided to not spend “emotional energy” on. Aj warns me about that quite a bit. She’s kind of my “emotional energy police”, in a good way. *editorial, Aj is my “best friend that is not my wife” and she tries her best to protect me from myself. She does a good job when I actually listen to her*

I think it comes down to when it becomes personal. When I decided that the issue was one that hit home. When I found a reason to WANT to spend my energy on it. I very rarely react publicly from an emotional point of view. My views are, usually, well pondered and thought out. Not to say that I’m unemotional but, I don’t let them make my decisions for me. It is, for me, counterproductive to get to a point where I’m slamming down the keys as I type. 

For me, faith and love are the same sides of the coin. *editorial, I’ve said that before, just don’t remember if I did here or not* That’s where it became personal. I first learned I had faith in something greater than myself. Then I realized that I was capable of love. I believe that love is also something “greater than myself”.

I met my wife. Learned that I loved her. Married her. Maybe not as simply as that but, that was the progression.

If you have read any of these, you know about Aj and Z. I’ll spare the details of how much I care for these ladies but, I’ll hit the high points. Aj is a person of strong faith. It happens to be Pagan. Z is also a person of strong faith, Christian, who happens to be gay. Because I had known them as people before I found out that either had an aspect of their life that I didn’t know, I didn’t really have a chance to apply any of my preconceived notions. Funny how that works. Neither wears a name tag that says “Hi my name is (blank) and I’m in a group that you are not.” They just go about their lives and let you make your decisions about them based on who they are. 

That was what pushed me off of the fence. Sure, there are a bunch of voices advocating religious freedom. *editorial, my Pagan friends might debate my choice of the word “religion”. It’s what I have so, it’s what I use*

Sure there a bunch of groups advocating “gay rights”. *editorial, please don’t get upset if I didn’t quite phrase that one to your liking either. Again, it’s what I have*

There is one group advocating Aj and Z. *waves*. I’m it. It became personal. I got nudged off of the fence. I hope that my voice and my words might sway someone else to change their views. I hope that my views of my friends might persuade someone else to see them as I see them and, by seeing them the way that I do, decide that they are not to be feared or scorned. I hope that my views might help someone, anyone else to overcome their apathy. I hope that by trying to show my friends as people, that they might gain additional support of their rights to live and love. I also know, that for Aj and Z to have the rights that they deserve that it’s going to mean the same for a bunch, millions, of others. For me, the millions are incidental to the two and those others that I know that fit either demographic. 

It is, and will always be, personal. I think that is where we always decide to get off of the fence. I think that when we do, we are able to speak with passion. I hope that my passion comes through. I believe that change will come when we can use that passion to persuade. I’m glad I’ve gotten off of the fence and spoken out. I’m glad that I was allowed into the yard. I remember, as a kid, sitting on the fence and watching the game. I wished I could play.  Life is not a game but, it is not worth living if you sit on the fence and watch it being played out.