One of the biggest complaints I heard from locals during and after pride was about all the straights. All I can say is ‘careful what you wish for!‘ We asked for equality and we’re getting it. That doesn’t mean everything becomes hunky dory nor does it mean we can remain separate. And it certainly does not it mean our fight is over.
On one hand, it is a good sign that more and more straights feel comfortable celebrating a gay event. It is yet another indication that we have become accepted by society. But sadly, our straight brethren aren’t always looking to see things our way. They’re indifference hasn’t changed. To them, it is yet another party to be celebrated, the reasons are irrelevant.1 Yes, I’m overgeneralizing to make a point here.
And we have our own realizations to adapt to as well. This idea of separate but equal is dead. Cast it aside and move beyond it. Did we think we’d get equality and still be separate? Did we think everyone would accept us and still leave us alone? Sorry, that is not how it works. You can’t get equality and then ask to be treated special. And it seems that is the confusing part for many of us. We haven’t fully realized what equality means and are still holding onto our old ideals. In essence, we’re still stuck on being separate from the whole. We’re beyond that now and we need to catch up.
Some might see our new reality as a down side. I don’t. But I guess I’ve always realized what the true equality would mean. I knew this was coming and I’ve hoped for it all my life. You can’t have special and equal rights. As previously mentioned, there will be some homogenization of our culture. Will it disappear? Of course not. But this is why some within our own community have fought against the march to equality. Like all things, our culture will adapt. But we must realize the days of “our” events are over. It is no longer our event. It is simply an event that happens to deal with us. Like it or hate it, it simply is.
I’d rather that than the worry and fear of never having the rights I need/want/deserve under the law. I’d rather know if my partner is injured or dies, I wouldn’t be locked out of his last moments or his family couldn’t take away everything we built together in life. I don’t want to pay extra taxes because the feds don’t recognize my marriage. I don’t want my foreign born partner deported. I don’t want my children in legal limbo. The list goes on and on.
Now we begin to see the true face of equality. And having seen it, would you deny that to the thousands of families across this nation? Even if, for you, it’s not all that it is cracked up to be, would you turn back the clock to full separation?
- One could argue the latter for gays in many ways too [↩]