Over the years since I came out, conversations have swirled around me about equal rights for LGBT community. It always seemed to be a battle between the Right and the Left. While part of the population pressed the issue as a God given right to human beings others pushed back and claimed it was an abomination to God.
DOMA seemed to be an unstoppable, unchangeable doctrine. I am not sure what happened where or when exactly. Maybe it was suddenly you realized your neighbor who you think is GREAT is Gay, possibly it is that your Mother just came out to you as a Lesbian. Maybe the general population is now realizing that the people we know and love in our community are in some instances LGBT and Gee I Like them!
All of this coming out of celebrities, Of Mothers and Fathers and Sons and Daughters of Sisters of Brothers, maybe it has given real faces to those of us who live this life. No longer can the nay-sayers and fear mongers draw a picture of a demon wanting to rape your children and turn all of humanity Gay. Instead “These People” sit next to you in Church, work in your office, live on your street. Possibly that has taken down this wall of hatred and discrimination and instead created a loving environment of peace and kindness toward others.
Yes some of those negative hateful people will still be out there but now for a moment the LGBT community can stand up and be noticed, they can at least if nothing else share in the Federal Benefits Couples SHOULD be afforded. Filing Tax returns together, sharing Social Security Benefits amongst other things.
Yes this is a Victory for those who love and care about members of the LGBT community but also this is a victory for society as a whole, the message we have sent today June 26, 2013 is, “Love Your Neighbor as Yourself We are All Equal.”
We celebrate this Victory today not just for those who remain but also for those who saw fit to end their lives due to the discrimination and hatred surrounding them. It is also in your honor today that we stand and say, today your rights are recognized as a Human Beings on planet Earth. Let the Shame and Discrimination be set aside for future generations. You did not live in vain.
Thank you to the pioneers who have walked the walk for these rights since long before I was ever born, to the people who were tormented, scorned and killed fighting for these rights. I thank you for myself, for my children, my grand children and for the generations to come who will flourish because YOU took a stand for Equality!