Friday, November 7, 2008

More on LGBT issues

I'm sorry to harp on this topic when there's so much great political news to celebrate, but have been discussing this issue more and clarifying my position.

First of all, I believe that any laws, including state constitutional amendments, banning gay marriage will eventually be overturned. I believe they violate two amendments to the U.S. Constitution, the document we all claim to hold dear. First, the only arguments I have heard against gay marriage are from religion. But laws based on religious arguments violate the separation of church and state. Secondly, the 14th amendment granted equal rights, and denying marriage to same sex couples violates those equal rights. Just as it was once ruled that "separate but equal" did not give equal rights to African Americans, civil unions do not give gays and lesbians the same rights as marriage.

If you are opposed to gay marriage, though, what you really must do is listen to the stories of LGBT folk. Get to know someone who is gay, and hear what they have to say about their life. Gays and lesbians do not have a choice in their sexual preference (bisexuals are the ones who have a choice). Many of them know from the time they are children that they are different, and they learn pretty quickly that lots of people think something is wrong with them. Many of them absorb that belief and feel flawed, have very low self-esteem. Many of them are bullied in school, many of them are physically beaten. Many deny their sexual preference because it tears them up so to have family or friends who wouldn't accept them if they admitted, even to themselves, that they are gay. Eventually most of them do learn to accept it, but most have to fight very hard to understand and accept who they are. Some can't. A large percentage of teenage suicides are due to issues of sexual preference or gender identity.

You have the right to your religion. But you have no right to impose that religion on others. You also need to accept that your religion is causing harm to innocents who wish no harm to you. Please wake up and look at the reality of the world.

2 comments:

Mark said...

A concise, completely accurate statement. Of course, the infuriating thing is that the people who most need to know this will never read past the first paragraph.

Leslie said...

Amen!