Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Causes and Effects
A 19 year old gay man, Marcellus Andrews, is brutally murdered in Waterloo, Iowa (Michelle Bachman's home town).
And do we really still imagine that things like this do not have consequences? Do we really imagine that singling out a whole population for vilification won't end up with a few young corpses with multiple injuries in excess of what was necessary to kill them?
Those of us living in gay meccas tend to forget that the struggle is far from over in most of the rest of the country, that it is still in its opening stages in most places. We forget that, even here in a place like New York, it is the young (and frequently the minority young) who bear the brunt of the abuse and the violence of the hater backlash. The same openess and progress that makes life so much better for me can actually make the situation worse for many others living in most parts of the country. The solution is not to retreat, but to stand by those dodging the shrapnel out there in their struggles to win the same freedom and dignity.
The struggle continues. The only thing that has changed is the location of the front lines. Today, they are in places like Tyler, Texas or Waterloo, Iowa. The front line troops are all those trying to establish gay-straight alliances in high schools or gay advocacy groups or gay centers in rural hometowns or urban neighborhoods.
All of us, whether in San Francisco or in Teutopolis, Illinois, are vulnerable. We have no legal protections on the Federal level. There is no federal legislation stating explicitly that the 14th Amendment applies to us too. What anti-discrimination laws exist are a patchwork of local and state laws scattered around the country, all of which are vulnerable to the whims of voters (even in San Francisco and New York).
Those of us who are gay and Christian have an extra extra extra extra responsibility to call out the toxic shit oozing from our churches, to confront the haters in the pulpits and miters, get in their faces, make their lives as miserable as possible, and to stop them. And who better to do it than us?
Posted by Counterlight at Tuesday, August 23, 2011