This I Believe

Amanda - west chester, Pennsylvania
Entered on April 24, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: equality, love

In the town where I grew up, homosexuality was kind of a ‘non-issue.’ Nobody asked, and nobody told. Since I’ve been at Penn State, I have been exposed to a community that, until now, I wasn’t aware of. From my experiences in the last several years, I have come to believe that all men (and women) are truly created equal.

I remember being at the Coming Out Day rally last year, listening to different LGBTQ people from the audience come up and speak. One woman went up and talked about her recent marriage to her partner of 15 years. Though her marriage is not officially recognized by our government, I can assure you that it doesn’t mean anything less to her. At the end of her speech, she held her left hand high in the air to show her wedding ring, in a gesture of defiance to the great state of Pennsylvania, and our nation as a whole.

I honestly believe that if every person who preached that homosexual marriage is “immoral” had a relative or close friend who was a homosexual, gay marriage simply wouldn’t be an issue. The reason why so many people are accepting of this blatant, everyday prejudice is because they are removed from it, the same way one can dismiss hardships in a foreign country. Nothing opens up your eyes like seeing a person that you care about ridiculed simply for being who they are.

What ever happened to “judge not, lest ye be judged”? I don’t understand how two men or two women in love and wanting to marry affect so-called ‘traditional’ heterosexual couples who want to get married. Since when is separate (civil unions) equal (to marriage)? I think we’ve been over this before.

I don’t think that love can be classified as ‘good’ or ‘bad,’ ‘appropriate’ or ‘inappropriate,’ based on gender. I believe that love is more important than gender. I believe that it is only a matter of time. I also believe that in twenty years, people will look back on this debate as we look back on interracial marriage now, wondering why it was ever such a big deal.

I don’t presume to think I can change your mind, if you disagree with me. I would, however, like for you to think seriously about the issue for a moment. What if homosexuality was the norm, and a man being attracted to a woman, or vice versa, was the minority? Consider that thought when you see gay couples fighting to have their relationships recognized.