I have a Facebook friend who annoys me frequently. He’s forever posting “red flags” about one thing or another: high levels of metal in our drinking water, the poisons put into our food by the makers of it, various kinds of pollution no one has ever heard of. He’s also posting similarly annoying “good” things like sweet-ass recipes no one’s heard of, interesting facts about our culture, and upcoming events of interest that one might not otherwise know about.
One thing he never neglects to post about, about twenty times a day, is how gay people are faring in political world. I don’t mean gay politicians, although he’ll post about those too. He’s a sentinel of sorts. He’s truly ever watchful. Many times I wish he’d just give it a rest. But I’m glad he doesn’t.
People need to throw a stink about things that aren’t right.
People often have marches or boycott or petition… make real fusses about something they want changed. This is great and is effective. Something also important, though, is simply showing support.
Today was a pretty big day for gays in the USA. If you aren’t sure what I mean, grab any immediate news and fill yourself in. The heat behind the push for marriage equality has built and built, and is finally coming to a boil.
Like boiling water on skin, living as a gay person is often quite painful. Unless you’re good at fulfilling the public’s general expectations of male/female roles, daily life is not just challenging – it’s awkward, and embarrassing, and frustrating. And, quite sadly, sometimes dangerous and deadly. Even gays whose lives are “convenient” enough so as not to have as many worries as their gay brothers/sisters, still face uphill battles just about anywhere they turn. My intention isn’t to turn this post into a “pity the gays” post. Many have said that gay is the new black. I’m not sure I feel this is a great comparison, but it’s truly close enough. Consider black history and the struggle blacks went through for equality – and how blacks STILL often face discrimination. There are many parallels in the modern gay struggle.
Not everyone can march on Washington or otherwise throw a fit about life’s injustices. But everyone can show support for their loved ones, and this is crucial. Even the most confident individual appreciates – needs – support from the people in his life that mean the most to him.
The Facebook app on my phone is spotty, and throughout the day today I wasn’t on much. Then between getting new furniture and making dinner, it was close to 9pm before I even touched the computer. And when I did….
Today was a nice day at the office. It was great to finally have the new living room furniture in place. And at dinner, I literally stuffed myself with good food. And then I sign on to Facebook and for a minimum of fifteen minutes I scrolled my newsfeed in awe.
So much red!
And now, while my heart was full from a good day, and my stomach filled from a yummy dinner, so the same is to be said of my spirit!
My brother posted as long of a status post as I think I’ve ever seen, broadcasting his opinion that support should be shown every day and not just in changing one’s Facebook picture. His own wife did change her picture, and I read in a few different places where she explained to others that she was doing it to show support for her “loved ones.” My step-aunt has been very vocal on Facebook for a few days already about the ridiculousness of this kind of discrimination. My Hindu bahin (sister) in Atlanta took pictures of herself wearing red in support. There were a few instances where I expected to see something and didn’t, but just about everywhere I clicked or scrolled I found that so many “in” my life care for my happiness and the happiness of those like me.
My beloved sat before his computer around the time I did mine. His experience seemed to mirror that of my own and he updated his status with, “I have to say regardless of what effect it truly has, I am very humbled and pleased to see so much red on my friend feed today. It’s good to know there are so many supportive people out there!”
Humbled, indeed! I write to you now with goose bumps, and a heart so full I can feel it in the lump in my throat as I hold back tears.
After spending the last decade of my life with the guy I call my beloved, it’s my sincerest hope that sooner rather than later I’ll be able to legally marry him, and worry less about many things. Regardless of when that day comes, and surely it will, please don’t wait to tell someone you love that you love them, or someone you support that you support them – or even if you just mildly care about someone, tell them.
People need to know it.