This I Believe

Scott - Oroville, California
Entered on May 12, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

I have been charged with a crime. Every side of my case has a point that leads the believer to validate their own personal agenda.

The proceedings opened with the biggest claim against me: that I slept with a male. My counter: that most recently I have slept with a woman. That alone means nothing, but when stated that it happened after the incident with the male, which conservative friends cite as being heterosexual.

Then, controlled by stereotypes, mind-molded students condemn me to homosexuality because I love the performing arts, including acting and dance. They think that all male dancers are gay. That is not accurate; precedents of heterosexual actor/dancers like Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire prove that male dancers do not have to be gay.

In defense of my own image, I joined the conversation. I had to explain the way I wanted to live. I want the “American Dream,” the way older generations have passed it down to me: to fall in love with a beautiful, intelligent woman, and raise a family with kids. Close supporters led my testimony, asking how I plan to get a male pregnant and have kids. I stated that I cannot have kids with a male; there is no way that I can get a man pregnant. Instead, I would have to raise a child that is not fully my partners’ and mine.

In closing the discussion, I was drilled by the narrow-minded about men, more specifically, that I notice them. I object! I notice women also, and I notice more about women. A tape was brought out, “Exhibit A:” I am shown on a beach scoping out people. A man walks by, I look briefly, then I look away; a woman walks by, my eyes follow her until she turns the corner.

End of discussion, Case closed. The jury deliberated, put all evidence together, and decided that I am innocent on all counts. Their verdict was delivered.

Since that day at school, I realized that it was not my sexuality on trail. It was the sexuality of my oppressors. They were only concerned because they do not want to catch “gayidis” and turn gay, like it is some kind of a contagious disease.

I used to be scared to acknowledge homoerotic acts. Now, since battling it out with those who disbelieved, I found that I did not need anyone to tell me something I already knew. Other people’s thoughts and opinions no longer matter to me, my verdict has been made. I believe that I am not gay.

Thanks to my verdict I have become free. Free from gender roles, homosexuality, heterosexuality; free to live my life the way it was meant to be lived. Free to have my American Dream. I can admit to saying “oh, that’s cute,” and that I cry during movies. I am free to say, “I’m me, and proud of it!”