Same-Sex Marriage, Overcoming Homophobia and Playing The Floor Is Lava
It was cultural background noise all around me, like a song with melody you never forget but never learn the words to. Can't imagine what it must be like to be gay and have heard that song since you were born. Must be awful.
Because I was a somewhat atypical teenager who hung out in odd places I was always getting weird signals, hit on by strange people, and having very confusing erotic dreams. When you're seeped in that cultural game that pretends gays are pariahs, the idea that you might be one is frightening. And scared people lash out. Scared people are dangerous people.
Little by little, I met homosexuals because, you know, they exist and they just walk around in the daylight like other humans. It's as simple as that. One of my first bosses was gay. She was a good boss. Funny, a little weird but that's what you get at an art house movie theater. Then I'd find out that someone else I knew was gay, and realize that it didn't really change anything. A bisexual person here, a transgendered one there, even this endearing declared asexual girl who went only by J that I thoroughly enjoyed the company of.
It's really hard to live in fear of something that stands only five feet tall and makes you oatmeal raisin cookies.
The way I see it, there are two sets of rules. The first set we call laws, and we all have to live by them. Good ones like don't kill people, confusing ones that we don't understand because we're not in charge and can't see the big picture, and stupid ones because the government is like your parents in that they are just regular, fallible people.
I'm not sure there's a name for the second set. Norms? Customs? Taboos? It's the default guidelines of the majority in any given area. Everyone in town likes chili, most people go to the Baptist church, y'all coming to the football game on Saturday? That sort of thing. With those rules comes the vague idea that anyone who breaks them is just wrong. Is off. You can't point to any specific reason why, really, just as you cannot point to a single verifiably logical reason for the oppression of gays or the opposition of same-sex marriage. But you feel it in the air. They stink of difference, and difference is judgment when you're childish.
It's just a game, though. It's just pretending the floor is lava. The game is over now. It really is. The president of the United States has expressed his support of equal rights for all LGBT Americans and people abroad. The Supreme Court has ruled that discrimination of the same is unconstitutional. Even the IRS has had enough of us jumping on the furniture, knocking over lamps, and THIS IS WHY WE CAN'T HAVE NICE THINGS.
The time has come for us all to grow up. To quit being scared of the dark, and to put away the game. I know there are a lot of people that don't want to, and as we walk across the floor they'll scream that the lava is burning you. It's not though. It's just a ratty carpet, and we're not brave jungle explorers, and homosexuals have names like Susan and Murray and go to Kroger and file taxes and clean up cat vomit and stuff like that.
The floor is the floor, and rights are rights, and people are people.