Standing for Equality and Love
Is there any hope that we as a planet will ever know the true meaning of peace? Is it possible to live one's life without fear of what others will think? Will being gay one day no longer be an issue? Can the religions of the world ever come together and understand that we walk different paths with the same ultimate destination?
These are questions that I ask myself often though the answer never seems to come. I find myself trolling Twitter and Facebook, reading the stories and watching the videos which show me just how far this planet of ours has to go. I try to separate myself from the reality of the madness that flows through the hearts of humans across the world. Instinctively I say to myself, “ this is not me, this is not who I wish to be.” I find myself believing that I am better than what I see, smarter than what I hear, and from time to time, I forget that I am part of the “we” that makes this planet what it is today.
Eldridge Cleaver has been misquoted as saying “ if you are not part of the solution, you must be part of the problem.” What he actually said was, 'There is no more neutrality in the world. You either have to be part of the solution, or you're going to be part of the problem.' Regardless of what the actual words, I am reminded that I can either stand against or for something, fence sitting is simply another form of being part of the problem. Saying nothing when I see injustice is really just another way of me saying that agree with what is being done. Thus adding one more person to the problem, rather than standing strong, voicing my views and joining my name to the list of people who are part of the solution.
There are many problems, or should I say issues in the world today. From poverty and starvation, homelessness to unbridled greed. There is no shortage of issues or subjects of which I could stand on my soap box and pontificate great words of wisdom and advice. Opinions, I have many, yet solutions I have only a few. My days of sitting quietly by, trying hard to not draw attention to myself must come to an end. It is time to be more than an observer and fully participate in the world.
Let it be known that I am not delusional, I realize that simply because I stand for something does not mean that all will agree. Many will find fault with my concepts. What I do hope for, however, is that through my expression of my opinions, one will take a moment to think, to investigate their own hearts and make up their own minds, rather than allow others to tell them what to think, feel or how to live.
I have come to realize that one must stand for something, there is no right or wrong, you simply must stand for something or you will fall for everything.
I stand for Equality. I stand for Compassion. I stand for Love. Regardless of your sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, race or nationality, I stand for fair and equal treatment. I stand against bigotry, hatred and the abandonment of children because they do not conform to one's idea of “normal”. I stand for religious freedom, the freedom to practice your religion as you understand it, as long as that practice brings no harm, mentally or physically to another.
I do not understand issues of gender identity. I have never not felt I was male and have never wanted to be anything but male. I have never looked at my body and felt it was wrong for me. Regardless of how hard I try, I will never understand the pain one must suffer living in a body that they can not relate to. I can compare it to growing up gay when the world said I should be straight, and from this comparison I can find compassion, but I will never truly know or understand because I have not experienced it. However, I fully stand for the rights of the transgendered population to be treated with kindness, respect and most of all equality. The laws being signed into law in many states, and the laws attempting to be passed in others, focused on a perceived issue which has no merit horrifies me.
Any law which promotes discrimination in any form is not a law that
promotes peace nor equality. On June 26th, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that same-sex couples could marry nationwide. In the wake of this landmark decision, cities, and states have fought to pass anti-gay legislature cloaked as religious freedom bills. Businesses have decided that it is their religious right to deny service to gays and lesbians because gay marriage is against their religious beliefs. When all efforts have failed the religious conservatives, attention was turned from marriage, to which bathroom a person should use. Within these laws and ordinances were proposed statutes that would allow the expansion of discrimination legally against Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals, and Transgendered alike.
A woman should use the Women's bathroom, regardless of if she was genetically born male or not. Same for a man. I don’t care if the gender reassignment surgery has been completed or not, be they in transition or already transitioned, it is wrong to force them into an identity which obviously is not theirs. As I said, I do not understand the many issues that a transgendered person must face, I don’t have to. It boils down to compassion and understanding for the human life itself. I will stand for their rights for so many reasons, one being, they have stood by my side for my rights. Together we marched the streets of America to bring about some of the changes that I enjoy today.
The issues I face as a gay man today are much less than it was twenty years
ago, yet issues remain to this day. So I add my name to the list of those who stand against hate. I stand firmly in the belief that if the actions of one does not physically or mentally harm another, then they should have the right and the freedom to express those actions, thoughts, and beliefs. Allow me to be very clear, I do not support nor condone incest, rape, torture or molestation. Those actions cause harm both mentally and physically. The victims did not and in most cases could not give consent.
It is time as a nation that we focus not on the issues of the bedroom. Being LGBT is not a virus, it is not something you can catch from being in the same room, using the same toilets or catering their weddings. Love has no gender. While some might believe that sexual orientation is only about sex and love is not possible, there are millions of men and women the world over who would strongly disagree.
Together, let's stand for Equality and Justice for all. Let your voice be heard as you proudly say, “ No Hate in my state, no Hate in my country.”
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