Uncle Roger's Notebooks of Daily Life
Monday, June 01, 2015
To be honest, I'm not sure when I began being outspoken about supporting the rights of the LGBT community in general or LGBT families in particular. I suspect the latter began about the time I started my own family -- I know that I've participated in every Blogging for LGBT Families Day since the second year. (For reference, this is the tenth year.) I wish I could say it goes back much, much further than that, but in my 20s I was a pretty oblivious, self-centered kid, only really interested in myself and my hobbies -- my recording studio, my career, music, movies, and, of course, beer. In my 30s, I was busy taking care of my dad and getting married, but somewhere in there, I stopped thinking only of myself and started noticing what was going on with others. So let's say I've been active in the fight for civil rights for somewhere between 10 and 20 years. That's a long time.
That's a long time for people to have to wait for equality and freedom. I know, of course, that a lot of people have waited for (and fought for) their rights a lot longer than that -- some their whole lives and some even giving up their lives in that fight -- but even a single day is too long for anyone to be denied their rights and the respect they deserve.
For the purpose of this article, however, let's say that I've been advocating for equality and rights for the LGBT community for ten years. That's a long time and, to be perfectly honest, I'm getting tired of it. Sick and tired of it.
I'm tired of having to explain, again, why everyone deserves equal rights. I'm sick of having to explain that it's nobody's business -- except those explicitly involved -- who someone chooses to love. I'm so over arguing that love and marriage have very little to do with what's in someone's pants and a whole lot about how one feels about someone else, whomever that someone else might be. I've explained too many times that if someone else's marriage affects your marriage in a negative way, the problem isn't with their marriage, it's with yours.
I'm done with telling people that nobody else in the world defines who they are based on their genitals alone -- that that's their problem. I've had it with pointing out that, while they are welcome to do as they believe their god commands, they don't get to force others to do the same -- especially when others are getting a different message, or even none at all. I've worn my pride shirts way too often, skipping the Land Rover and LEGO Chess shirts to show support for the LGBT community.
I'm tired of hammering the point home again and again that sexual orientation and gender identity are not reasons to allow someone to treat someone differently and that the solution to a conflict between professional duties and religious beliefs is not mistreatment and discrimination but change in profession or business. If you don't want to make a wedding cake for a gay couple or provide flowers for their wedding, don't be an asshole, find another job where you won't have to. I'm a computer programmer -- I don't make cakes for anyone and the only flowers I ever deal with are the ones I buy my wife on Mother's Day and her birthday.
I am so over getting pissed off when I read the news. I'm done with following the SCOTUS and hoping they've read the constitution. I want to change my twitter avatar to something other than the crappy picture of the NOH8 holiday lights I put up one year. I'd like to drop the #prop8 twitter search I have set up. I'd like to argue with someone about why Windows sucks or what's wrong with Linux rather than why we shouldn't be making people drop their pants before letting them get married.
It's enough with the Blogging for LGBT Families Day. LGBT Families shouldn't exist -- there should only be Families. Families come in all shapes and sizes and as long as they all love each other and take care of each other, it really doesn't matter who makes up that family.
I'm tired of it all. It's too much and it's been too long. I don't want to fight this fight any more. I am over it.
Unfortunately, however, the fight is not over. As much as I want to be done, I'm not -- none of us are. As long as Michelle Duggar is telling lies about gay men being pedophiles in order to repeal anti-discrimination legislation while in fact it is her own son who is the pedophile, I have to keep fighting. As long as there are politicians who advanced their career by oppressing others, I have to keep going. While there are still judges who think their own prejudices trump the law, I need to continue. As long as there are bakers and florists who feel it's okay to pick and choose what groups they will serve, I have to speak up. Until there are no more teens kicked out of their homes and disowned by their families simply because of who they are, I need to carry on. Until there are no more kids or young adults who feel the only way to make the pain stop is to end their own lives, I have to continue telling them it will get better.
As sick and tired as I am of the whole mess, I have to keep going. I have to keep fighting this fight.
As do we all.
This post is part of Blogging for LGBTQ Families Day 2015.