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I am in love. I have loved the same person for more than 20 years. I fell in love after only a few short weeks of courting. In the last 20 years, my love has grown and we have shared that by starting a family. We have a home, a good support system and participate in our community. Now here is the question: Does it matter at this point whether the person I love is a man or a woman?
We decided to take a second and write something concerning the terrible rash of suicides committed by gay teens after being bullied. We have several very close friends who are gay and the idea of someone pushing them around because they are who they are just boils our blood. Unfortunately, this is normal for the GLBT community. One our friends just posted a status saying that every gay person has a ‘horror story’. Does that make anybody else angry? How many people have to get hurt or die for people to notice? Should it even matter that they are GLBT? We don’t think so.
These are hate crimes. Picking on a person because they are different is a hate crime. When Nazi’s burn down a synagogue, we easily identify this as a hate crime. When a group of rednecks beat up a black man and drag him behind a car, we easily identify this as a hate crime. When you single out a person, group or religion because they are different from you and subject them to abuse, that is a hate crime.
One of the reasons we are having any issue with charging children for bullying other children because they are gay is because too many adults have done this in their youth. One of the reasons we have difficulty calling this a hate crime is because, up until the other day, we were using the f word and referring to something as ‘gay’ when it was stupid. One of the reasons we have difficulty calling this a hate crime is because we buy into this concept that we have freedom of speech and stating your dislike for a homosexual is your right.
If we were honest with ourselves, we would be locking up every gay-bashing homophobe in the country. If we were honest with ourselves as a nation, we would start the homophobe round up with jerks like National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and arrest every one of them. If we were honest, we would see that being anti-gay isn’t like being a democrat or a republican. If we were honest, we would see that you would have to be a masochist to choose to be gay in this schizoid climate of acceptance and intolerance.
Things are coming to a head. All must reach the point of a revolution to effect a radical change. This is not only a change of laws but also a change to the zeitgeist. We must become intolerant of intolerance. We must see organizations like NOM as nothing more than hate spewing fronts for fearful people who still throw rocks at the sun and try to run from their own shadows. And when this revolution happens and equality is finally won, then we can begin to teach acceptance. Then we can teach our children that there is never a reason to tease another child. It is unacceptable regardless of the beliefs they are taught. Then, teens like Seth, Asher, Billy and Tyler will rest in peace, free from the bullies and hateful society that would never allow them a normal life.