Posts tagged ‘Sexual Orientation’


Gay Marriage: Time for Recognition

While President Obama announced last week he now favors gay marriage, Gov. Romney simultaneously was implicated in a bullying event against a gay student, who was pinned down against his will, so Mitt could cut his hair, despite the victim’s cries for help. Although virtually everyone involved in the abusive incident clearly remembered it, even though it occurred in 1965, Mitt obviously lied, when he claimed he could not recall it.

The issue of gay marriage has now been joined as a topic for the 2012 Presidential Campaign, as Obama is for it, and Romney is against it. In the Republican Debates, Romney said he supported equal rights regardless of sexual orientation, but characteristically adopted a contradictory position, as he said he opposed same-sex marriage. (1-16-12) He explained as Governor he issued gay marriage licenses in Massachusetts, only because his state constitution required it (12-15-11). He agreed with adoption agencies that restrict child placement to homes with only one man and one woman (2-22-12). He wants the Constitution amended to limit marriages to one man and one woman (8-11-11) (1-7-12).

If Mitt Romney and the Republicans win the 2012 election, the policies of other conservatives will also be advanced. Sen. Santorum pledged to push gays back into the military closet by reinstituting “don’t ask don’t tell” (10-25-11). He ran against the U.S. Constitutional framework, and State’s Rights under the 10th Amendment, as he suggested the issue of marriage be governed exclusively from Washington. He wanted to federalize marriage in all states, saying a national law is needed. He argued someone cannot be married in one state, but not in another. He also supported a federal law banning adoption by gay couples (1-7-12).

Newt Gingrich also came out against gay marriage. While he conceded gays should be able to visit friends in hospital beds, or designate them in Last Wills, he opposed gay marriage, as he thinks marriage is limited to one man and one woman. (1-7-12) Gov. Perry also favored a U.S. Constitutional Amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman. (1-7-12)

President Obama on the other hand has evolved, and we as a nation have come a long way. Mitt is right about one thing, in the 1960s, the topic of gay rights was very much in the closet. At that time, we all focused on Mary Tyler Moore in a tight black shirt. While I think it was the Laugh-In Comedy Hour that allowed an apparently gay guy named Tiny Tim to play banjo, while singing at a very high pitch, no one verbally connected the dots, and explained he was gay, or that there were people like him, who are drawn to their own sex. Personally, I had absolutely no idea of what gays were all about in the 1960s. The assumption was we were all the same, and had the same drive towards women.

In college, in the early 1970s, I met a couple of smart guys on campus, who shared an intellectual curiosity about academic topics, which made them interesting to talk to, but I did not know they were gay, because they were not flaming, and they left me alone, since I was very heterosexual and they knew it.

Some 20 years later, I saw one of them at a class reunion. By that time he had some gay characteristics, and he finally came out of the closet, and told me the other friend we had in college was gay. When I asked how he knew, he admitted he too was gay. I was kind of shocked, but asked what made gays the way they are. Was it genetics or environment? He stated he was gay due to genetics and not learned behavior. It was something in their DNA, he said.

The incident helped me to evolve, because the revelation put a human face on the topic. Today, while I still don’t feel comfortable around flaming gays, at least I understand why they are the way they are. They certainly have no choice. I am sure if they did, they would avoid the troubles that come with being gay, by joining the heterosexual world.

Romney and the Republicans need to change, as many of the rest of us have over time. We have come to grips with the reality gay people are born that way, and it is unfair to blame them for being different, simply by the random chance of birth. It’s is time they were treated as fully equal citizens.