This I Believe
I believe that humans have the right to love whomever their heart chooses. This is not to be confused with what their brain chooses. Every couple I’ve ever spoken with who was in love, straight or gay, never talked about a choice; the two simply “fell” for each other.
Falling is definitely the right metaphor for love. When you fall you have no control, for a second you’re stunned, and when you finally hit the ground it can be that you were just an inch above the ground and now your feet are safely planted on the floor again with no signs of moving, or you can crash in a heap on the hard concrete with broken bones and bruises. And yet even with these two drastically different scenarios people take the leap day after day, not knowing what will become of them and usually not thinking that far ahead. They are simply thinking “maybe this is the one; maybe this is the one that will finally get me for me.”
No one chooses to have their heart broken; no one chooses who they love. If this weren’t true white men and women would never have fallen for black men and women before desegregation. They logically knew that people would disapprove, that their own white parents would turn their white backs on their white kids because their white kids “chose” black kids to be their husbands or wives. Those white girls and boys knew that they were choosing a more difficult life that would definitely include being looked down on, probably include being called names either publicly or privately, possibly include such insulting things as being spit upon, might include the occasional cross being burned on their lawns, and maybe, just maybe, they or the black spouse that they “chose” would die because of who they, a white person, “chose” to love.
Now take that whole little scenario and change anything that was black and white to gay and straight. Tell me how it’s different. Tell me that people choose to be called faggots and spit upon. Tell me that they choose to have their property vandalized, or to be laughed at behind their backs. Tell me that they choose to have to hide what gender their partner is because they’re afraid of losing their job. Tell me that they choose to have some of their most fundamental rights challenged or denied because of who they share a bed with. Now tell me that they choose to be victims of violence, sometimes even killed, because of who they’ve “chosen” to love.
I believe that no one would choose a life filled with possible financial, emotional, and even physical hardship just for the heck of it, and no one chooses who they love. This I believe.
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