An Endorsement For Gay Marriage To Keep You Awake At Night
Posted on May 10, 2012
I’ve been having a little trouble lately coming with what I think are quality ideas for blog posts. It’s a tiny bit of a struggle after writing a certain amount on a regular basis, but then OutlantaCon gave me a few nuggets I could see working with and expanding on. I had the perfect one for today! And then President Obama announced his support for same sex marriage. Well, shit. What I thought about writing is going to have to wait because I had a pretty emotional response to the announcement. I don’t know about you, but I’m a little scared.
There are going to be a huge number of people chiming in about this and though I doubt I’ll be as eloquent, it still needs to be said. Here’s the immediate thing: why didn’t this announcement get made before North Carolina chose to add marriage as only being between a man and a woman to their constitution? Did the president do it because it passed or did he do it because of Biden’s comments about supporting gay marriage? I guess it really doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things, but I would like to know to satisfy my own curiosity.
This whole thing scares me. We’ve been asking for recognition for a long time now and suddenly we’ve been given a chance for it. There’s no guarantee that gay marriage will be granted even if Obama wins a second term, but we’re a step closer to the dream. We asked for this and now it’s a reality. We have the support of the president.
In giving it, Obama drew a line in the sand. This is now a party fight and a single choice for us; Democrat leadership or Republican leadership. Pro-gay or anti-gay. There doesn’t seem to be any middle ground anymore. We also know that if Mitt Romney wins, he’ll do everything in his power not only to make any future gay marriages illegal, but most likely find a way to nullify those that have been done. I fear this election won’t be so much about budgets and deficits as it will about civil rights and religion.
But I’ll tell you what terrifies me and I mean terrifies me to the bone. The GLBT community is about to get dragged through the mud. This battle, and it is a battle, has the potential to be a wholesale slaughter. People are going to bring out the arguments that gays are trying to indoctrinate children into the gay lifestyle (especially going through schools), that the Bible speaks out against homosexuality (naturally, let’s pick and choose what we want to believe from the good book), that we are depraved and sick sinners, and you know someone is going to bring animals into the argument (probably as a “What’s next? Marrying your dog?”).
Have a look at what’s already been said within an hour of the president’s announcement.
“All homosexuals and trannys need to be exiled from America this plague has to be removed like you remove a tumor that’s causing cancer from this geat country we call America before our kids are poisoned by this abomination. All those who sympathize with and encourage homosexuality should be imprisoned for blasphemy against God.” (kstaxx)
“…Republicans recognize the importance of having in the home a father and a mother who are married. The two-parent family still provides the best environment of stability, discipline, responsibility, and character. Children in homes without fathers are more likely to commit a crime, drop out of school, become violent, become teen parents, use illegal drugs, become mired in poverty, or have emotional or behavioral problems.” Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus
This is the tiniest sampling of what we’re in for. People haven’t had time to organize yet and when they do, it’s going to get a lot worse before it ever gets better. I’m a big boy and I can take a lot, but I worry about our youth. Do you think bullying won’t intensify? Do you think name calling won’t get worse? Do you think that the suicide rate won’t spike? It all may very well come true and I’m not trying to be a doomsayer. I’m trying to prepare myself for what’s to come and figure out what I can do to help. We’re going to have to educate people who don’t understand us that we’re no different.
I posted a link to President Obama’s announcement on my Facebook page yesterday and touched on some of my fears. A straight acquaintance sent me a message a short time later that does give me hope.
“I don’t comment on political posts on FB mainly because I tend to be put thru the ringer for my beliefs. Some people assume because I am a Christian and a Republican than I am a greedy bigot. I use the term Republican loosely these days though since I am mainly a Republican on economic issues and it seems the party is being hijacked. Anyhow, just wanted you to know that you have some support from those of us on the right.”
This is an important reminder to all of us that not all people who associate themselves with a particular political party or religion believe everything their base does. We need each other, but we also need their help if we’re going to get through this.
I wasn’t around for Stonewall and for others who weren’t either, maybe this is our little bit of gay history in the making.
So…what can I do to help?
Kristoffer Gair (who formerly wrote under the pseudonym Kage Alan) is the Detroit-based author of Honor Unbound, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To My Sexual Orientation, Andy Stevenson Vs. The Lord Of The Loins, Gaylias: Operation Thunderspell, several short stories featured in anthologies (to be combined in a forthcoming book), the recently re-published novella Falling Awake, its sequel, Falling Awake II: Revenant and Falling Awake III: Requiem.
25 Responses to “An Endorsement For Gay Marriage To Keep You Awake At Night”
Sara York says:
May 10, 2012 at 5:40 am
Great post. Though the economics of the democratic party are hard for me to deal with I don’t think I can ignore the larger importance of the social policy of the democratic party. Money is no where near as important as aligning myself with a man who has the balls to stand up and give support to same sex marriage.
The pseudo-Christian values people are spouting off about don’t line up with true Christian values. It’s easy to not support idiots who spout off about only a man and a woman=marriage. It’s a step, hopefully it will be more than just one step and it will prove to be in the right direction, providing more protection instead of causing a backlash and providing less.
May 10, 2012 at 12:10 pm
There’s usually bits and pieces that I like from each party, but the marriage issue really makes it a “one way or the other” choice. I’m not fond of those.
May 10, 2012 at 6:14 am
They said, who ever they is, that gay civil rights are one of the last “rights wars” we’ll have. I guess we’re about to find out. I hope it ends happily. . .but with America’s mixed history. . .
May 10, 2012 at 12:11 pm
It does post an interesting “What’s next?” once this is done.
Emily Gained says:
May 10, 2012 at 6:37 am
If I was being cynical, I’d say it was just one more campaign promise. I thought he had already said he was going to support it years ago and he’s not got around to it yet. I’ll believe it when I see it. If he loses the election, it won’t get done, if he wins it? We’ll see.
May 10, 2012 at 12:12 pm
We’re really left with no choice right now. If we don’t vote for him, we know what the alternative is. Possibly darned if we do, totally damned if we don’t.
May 10, 2012 at 7:12 am
This coming election has always been about civil rights. The President’s announcement just made it easier for others to see. There is no greater crisis to face a nation than one which involves the rights of its citizens. We must be vigilant because the opposition will seek to divide and conquer. We have already seen a willingness to pit one disenfranchised segment of the population against another. With the attacks on women’s issue reaching a fevered pitch, it will not be long at all before the argument is made that women working outside the home are primarily responsible for the loose morals of society and the rising numbers of gays.
May 10, 2012 at 12:14 pm
Just don’t tell Ann Coulter. She’d have to admit to being part of the problem.
May 10, 2012 at 9:06 am
All the potential slings and arrows you fear will be used against us have been used against us before, and we’ve survived. The most important thing we can do is make sure President Obama is re-elected. Bigotry and ignorance have been with us since we climbed down from the trees, and they aren’t going to go away anytime soon.
May 10, 2012 at 12:15 pm
I’m just not fond of the casualties.
Sue Brown says:
May 10, 2012 at 9:26 am
I’m not an American so I have no vote to make my say in the outcome of the election. I can tell you one thing. The so-called Christians who spew their hatred on a daily basis, who drive young GLBT kids to suicide because it’s better than living with the hate and bullying – they have shaken my faith to its core. Not the atheists, not those who believe in other faiths. The haters who take my God’s name and defile it are the ones who are driving me away from my church and my faith.
If those people are voted into power, God help the rest of the world.
May 10, 2012 at 12:18 pm
But…but…they’re just looking to make the world in their perceived image. Because that’s never been tried before.
Sue Brown says:
May 10, 2012 at 12:23 pm
No never *nods*.
Sadly, the attitude is gaining ground over here. That is why I am so scared.
May 10, 2012 at 10:22 am
I can see where your fear comes from. The ‘anti-gay’ activists must answer Obama’s decleration. Bigots have always been loud. They will not stand by and let this go. It’s disgraceful that in a country where it’s free to voice your beliefs, it will cause American against American.
The bigots are entitled to their beliefs, BUT they are NOT allowed to push those beliefs onto others!!
I have to agree with you though. My fear will be for the young of this country. They are already dealing with so much, and now the political atmosphere is going to make their lives that much harder.
Again, I so wish I had the funds to create a network of sactuaries for those oppressed by the bigots and bullies of the world. A place to feel safe and be who you are, love who you want and understand the worth that you are. As an advocate for freedom of all races, orientations, religions and social status, we have the obligation to teach our youngsters that everyone is equal, in EVERY way. Prejudice is taught, not made. Violence is taught, not instictive.
Ok, I’ve rambled enough. Thank you Kris for seeing that, though Obama’s support of gay marriage is a step in the right direction, it will be causing ripples that will reach far and wide.
May 10, 2012 at 12:19 pm
My co-workers make fun of me because I’m older than they are, but I’m starting to see the bigger picture of things. Not sure I like that. lol
Sharita Lira says:
May 10, 2012 at 10:22 am
It’s about time he made the statement. These bigots need to be put in their place. Still, like the above commenter said, people have had bad feelings towards people of different color and or orientation for a while. That may never change but at least Pres O shows his support. That means something!
Jen Tucker says:
May 10, 2012 at 11:12 am
My fear is if he loses, our own side with come at us with pitch forks. With this declaration, he just insured that if he loses, the media as well as everyone else will blame the gays. The headlines will read, “Obama loses due to gay marriage support”. News stations will argue that if he hadn’t made that statement back in May, he would’ve won the election.
This of course, will not be true. Sure, the support might be part of it, but not the whole cause of a loss.
It isn’t going to be a fun rest of the year for anyone who is GLBT. Gods save us if he loses.
May 10, 2012 at 12:21 pm
It forced our hand, but again, we’ve been asking for this kind of support for a while now. He still managed to intertwine it with politics, though.
Kayelle Allen says:
May 10, 2012 at 12:04 pm
Every election has been the most vital in our history because it addresses the future. We recognize that in hindsight. I don’t doubt this time period will be remembered as the period during which civil rights underwent climactic change. Young people have the potential to meet every challenge. It’s a natural thing to want to protect them, but they must face the future and strive to make it better for themselves. We do them the best service if we help them learn how to do that.
May 10, 2012 at 12:24 pm
I don’t know about this younger generation. Have you seen the way they drive???
Kayelle Allen says:
May 10, 2012 at 5:26 pm
Okay… you have a good point there. 😉 LOL
Shae Connor says:
May 10, 2012 at 12:22 pm
I tweeted this in response to both events this week: “Dear Christians against equality: I don’t know about your God, but mine teaches love, not hate. Praying for you, A Progressive Christian.”
Truth is, the bigots are just as worried about what’s coming next as you and I are. That’s why they’re yelling so loudly. But they’ve lost every battle before this, and they’ll lose this one, too. In the process, some of them will even change their minds. I have many, many family members who grew up being taught that blacks were inferior to whites (often “backed up” by Scripture), but few of them still believe it.
Change takes time, and it’s often painful, but it’s still inevitable. We’ll get each other through whatever comes.
Kiernan Kelly says:
May 10, 2012 at 1:04 pm
I must admit I was thrilled when Obama finally grew a pair and stepped into the light. He hedged for so long, I’d nearly lost hope.
In regard to the bigoted comments you quoted, while truly terrifying (the first particularly, since it reflects the mindset of WWII and the Third Reich), remember that those who post hate are a vocal minority who hide behind the Internet shield of anonymity. I do not believe that these views represent those of all Republicans and all Christians.
Even so, I fear for gays, people of color, and women should Romney win the day in November. I agree that frightening times are looming on the horizon.
Angelia Sparrow says:
May 11, 2012 at 3:06 am
I’m not as optimistic as Kiernan. I believe those in power never give two shakes about those out of power. Until those out of power amass a large enough voice to terrify them. Stonewall. the Milk Riots. Malcolm X. The Haymarket riots.
And then there is huge pushback. This pushback has been building (and ongoing) for 40+ years, against both the QUILTBAG and women.
As fascist as America has become, and as militarized as our police force is, and as silent as our news media is about anything not in the interests of the corporatocracy, I honestly wonder how bad things are going to get.
I have two very out daughters. This whole “If you aren’t rich white straight Christian male, you aren’t human, and we will fuck you up” trend that has gotten so blatant keeps me up nights.
Lichen Craig says:
May 14, 2012 at 11:33 pm
Good post. I think you ask a great question when you wonder why exactly Obama chose to do this NOW.
The list of random online responses needs a disclaimer: the internet is rife with haters. I like to think that these are the loudest, obnoxious voices. Many more do not feel this way. A little perspective keeps people from panic – and despair.