Equality for all

Amy - Brookline, Massachusetts
Entered on December 20, 2008

On November 4th, 2008, we, the American people, attained racial equality when we elected Barack Obama as our President. Aside from the policies that we may or may not agree on, we achieved a great feat by electing our first African-American President. However, on November 4th, 2008, Californians also voted to ban gay marriage. I believe that homosexuals should have the same rights and benefits as heterosexuals. I believe in equality for all, regardless of our gender, sexual preference, race, ethnicity, and etc.

How can we deny a group of people their inalienable human rights? Our Declaration of Independence clearly states that every citizen has the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Being homosexual does not make a person any less of a citizen, or even human being, than a heterosexual. By voting against gay marriage, Californians are refusing homosexuals of their right to live their lives the way they want, and ultimately, their happiness. This is wrong. Although laws are enacted by the will of the people, this law contradicts everything that our country is built on – freedom and equality for all. Therefore, it does not make sense for us to deny any other citizen of his/her rights.

My morals are based on how I was raised by my family and community. My mother and I moved to the United States because she wanted to give me the chance to live in a country where I have the freedom to think, speak, and decide the direction of my future – essentially, achieve the American Dream. I live in a very liberal town in Massachusetts, which was the first state to permit gay marriage. In high school, I heard horror stories of how homosexuals are treated and the prejudice that they suffered. For example, a lesbian couple spoke of their disastrous vacation, where one of them was injured, and the other could not help because they weren’t married. Homosexual couples are not given the same healthcare benefits as heterosexuals, and usually, are not even allowed to visit each other in the hospital because they are not considered “family.” When the legislation passed to allow gay marriage, my high school chemistry teacher, who is homosexual, cried tears of happiness. Seeing how happy he was at that moment was priceless.

Many people do not agree with me because they believe that people can choose their sexual preferences, it is wrong to be homosexual, and it goes against their religion. But have they ever considered that maybe when we were all born as homosexuals and we chose to be heterosexual. This does not seem to be logical, so how does deciding to be homosexual make sense. Homosexuality is something that a person is born with, not something that they can choose. Maybe because I am not religious, I can’t see the other side and point of view, but religion and state supposed to be separate? People need to keep religions on the backburner when they are voting, as we must maintain a separation of religion and state.

It is crucial for us to remember that consenting to gay marriage will benefit society overall. We must keep in mind that our some of our family, friends, neighbors, and community are homosexual. Don’t we want them to live the life that they want? Don’t we want to see our family, friends, and neighbors happy?