Monday, December 08, 2008

'Gay is the New Black'

The title of this journal entry is a quote from a 21 year-old protesting Prop 8 in California – the proposition banning gay marriage in that state. It passed. The good citizens of California – so ready for change in this country – rejected the legalization of same sex marriage. It is possible – likely, in fact – that state-by-state referendums in the next decade will broaden the definition of marriage thereby legalizing same-gender marriages. But wide acceptance of this dramatic change seems to stand on the far side of a moral line our citizenry has drawn in the sand. As a white, heterosexual American I have never experienced the discrimination perpetrated upon either of the groups referenced in this comment. But I do ask myself: Are the issues confronting homosexuals in our society on par with the centuries of brutal struggles experienced by our African-American brothers and sisters? By asking this question it is not my intention to belittle the genuine suffering homosexuals have encountered in our culture. I’ve seen it, stood in the midst of public humiliation, witnessed its heart-wrenching toll on families and watched as quiet fights for acceptance ended in bitterness, loneliness and banishment. There are untold, sad and ugly stories. Cruel is cruel is cruel. But on my scales of justice the gay/black analogy tips very far to one side. And if such a raw and despicable statement can be shouted angrily in CA I can certainly holler back from TN that this rhetoric is an outrage! I have been digging deeply attempting to find, in the gay plight, analogies for slave ships, slavery, sub-human definition, zero rights, whips, chains, existing as property, no vote, ‘back of the bus,’ lynching, separate bathrooms, separate drinking fountains, plantations, KKK and Jim Crow. Add to this abridged list of atrocities against African-American the following comment: ‘Gay is the New Black.’


Post a Comment

<< Home