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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Make It Real!

I am proud of the New York State Legisature in passing a law that permits homosexuals to marry, as their heterosexual counterparts have always done.

I can remember sympathizing with the gay community for years.  Even before I ever learned what being gay even meant, I knew that the hatred many others had for them was beyond toxic.  Where I grew up, being gay was thought to be the worst thing a boy or man could be.  It was associated with being unathletic, weak, or just plain indecisive.  I did not grow up in a time or place where racism, sexism, or anti-semitism was prevalent, but the local geniuses and philosopher-kings thought nothing of disparaging gays as a fact of life.

But over time, gays have become more and more accepted as part of American society.  To say anything disparaging about gays, in this day and age, is accepted the same way as an off-color joke about blacks, Jews, Asians, or Latinos -- you shoot yourself in the foot, and the toes do NOT grow back!

However, I can't help but think of the circumstances that led to the death of Tyler Clementi.  Here was a young man trying to make his way in the world, only to be "outed" in the most humiliating way possible.  No matter how many laws are passed, no matter how many course are taught, some people just won't get it.  Perhaps if he had survived, and then come to New York to live, and not to die, he might have been able to make use of his newfound rights.  We'll just never know . . . .

So here's to the men and women who are now free, in New York State, to marry the one they love without restrictions -- may this newfound freedom honor the memory of Tyler Clementi, and what he might have lived for if hate and ignorance hadn't gotten in the way.