Monday, December 17, 2012
Listening to: Sports Center (or some ESPN type sports show thing)
It isn't often that I trot out my personal beliefs and rant about controversial things on here. In fact, I don't think I've ever done that before. But today I read some things that really made my blood boil, and I believe that using your voice is one of the best ways to bring about change. You may not all agree with me, and I completely understand that. I just hope you respect my beliefs, and if you don't, hopefully we can have a civil conversation about out differences.
Anyway, in case you haven't heard, on Saturday a gay Marine proposed to his partner at the White House. This lovely, adorable, happy story has blown up the internet. Until recently, individuals involved in the U.S. military weren't allowed to be openly gay. And, as many are aware, most states in the U.S. don't allow gay marriage, but the Supreme Court will be hearing cases about the legality of gay marriage and many states are starting to recognize marriage between two men or two women in addition to "traditional" marriage. So it's kind of a wonderful thing that these two men were allowed to express their love openly without any fear of persecution through their jobs or their government.
I hadn't heard about this story until ten minutes ago when a friend shared this photo on Facebook. The photo was originally posted on a group, and, being the curious individual that I am, I decided to read the comments to see what people thought.
What I saw made my heart literally hurt. There was so much negativity. People were ranting that being gay is morally wrong and that these two men will rot in hell. They were saying that God doesn't approve of these men loving each other and that it's wrong that the United States is beginning to legally recognize gay marriage. They were saying that the Marine who proposed had no business being involved in the military, and that he was obviously not a good person because he "chose to be" gay.
I'm not a very religious person, but I was raised in a religious household. Personally, I believe that God doesn't care what love looks like. I think he just wants people to find love and embrace it. I think he would understand that we're born the way we're born. In fact, I know he does. He makes us people we are.
I also strongly disagree with the argument that, because the Bible describes marriage as between a man and a woman, that is the only way it can be. Marriage was around long before Christianity as the religion we know it as today. Pagans who knew nothing of the god that Christians worship celebrated marriage long before the New Testament existed.
If we all followed the Bible to the letter, fathers would be able to sell their wives and daughters like property. Incest would be okay. Eating certain foods that we now eat all the time would be forbidden.
Especially with all of the tragedy the world has experienced lately, it really upset me to see people being so hateful about something that is supposed to be a happy and beautiful time. Marriage, no matter what religion it is in or what the beliefs are of the people getting married, is a wonderful thing. Knowing you want to spend the rest of your life with someone and loving them so much you never want to spend a day without them is a rare thing. We should be happy for anyone who finds that kind of love.
I think now, more than ever, we need to bite back our negativity and show our love instead. The world is a dark and scary place, but there is still beauty. There is still love. We need to remember that the people we share this world with are also people - not animals, not inanimate objects, but people with thoughts and feelings and lives outside of our own. When we disagree with something, there are ways we can express ourselves and our opinions without being harsh and negative.
Whether or not you believe that gay marriage (or being gay in general) is right, I hope you can still find the happiness in the love stories shared by people who identify themselves as gay. I hope you see that we are all human, and we need to respect and support each other if we ever want to heal this broken world.