As Pride Month Nears the End

As Pride Month nears the end, I couldn’t help but to consider something. What’s the big deal? What’s the big deal if a gay couple wants to get married? How does that impact YOUR life? No one is saying that you have to be gay and marry your partner; they are simply saying if you can marry the love of your life, why can’t we? It’s a fair argument. What’s the big deal if someone wants to be known as different pronouns or wants to dress a different way every day because they don’t conform to a gender identity? How does that impact your life? The answer is: it doesn’t.

I’ve always wondered, as any rational being would, why some people fight so hard for freedoms and complain about their freedoms being trounced on while they proceed to trounce on other people’s rights. Wearing a mask = muh freedoms! Gay marriage and trans rights being denied acceptance = my religious/moral beliefs are more important than the freedoms of my fellow Americans. It’s a self-centered view to have, if you really think about it. Which makes sense, because many people are only willing to fight if something directly impacts them. Or is told by propaganda media that something impacts them. Then, they will charge into a state or federal capitol building without an issue.

This Pride Month should celebrate how far we’ve come, but it disheartens me to say that I’m not sure we’ve really come as far as we should have. I’m fortunate enough that I live in a state where gay couples can get married and start families of their own through adoption. But not everyone is as fortunate. I wish my loved ones who are in the LGBTQ+ community could experience the life that they want to live, without fear of other people hating them, injuring them, or even killing them. I wish that at least 52 years past the Stonewall Riots that people could live their lives freely without memes mocking trans people for being “ugly wannabe girls” or at least get married without jumping through a million hoops. When I got married, I showed up to City Hall, got my marriage license to be signed by our JP, and called it a day. It’s not lost on me that even interracial marriage wasn’t even federally legal until 1967, and it saddens me that the road for the LGBTQ+ community is so long to get to equality.

We’re supposed to be kind and accepting of others. That’s what the Bible says, if you are religious. If not, aren’t we supposed to be fighting for all Americans to be able to achieve “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” as stated in the Declaration of Independence. You spend so much time saying being forced to wear masks infringes on your rights, but does it not infringe on the rights of others to not be able to marry the person that they love? It infringes on your rights to be forced to get the COVID-19 vaccine, but it’s okay that trans people are forced into identities because they have no legal protections otherwise? I’m not sure what the argument is here. Is it that the government must be small enough to fit into the bedroom? You can’t tell me what to do or what I can’t do or be, unless I’m different from “societal norms”, then infringing on one’s rights to live their lives is perfectly acceptable.

We’re not truly free if people keep telling us who’s allowed to have rights and who isn’t. Straight women have freedoms, as long as they don’t want abortions or birth control or equal pay. Straight white men can do whatever they want. Gay men can’t exist and trans people are just pedophiles in disguise waiting to assault our unattended children in bathrooms. Did I get all of that right? It’s confusing to me, so you have to bear with me.

The last paragraph was 90% sarcasm. Pretty much everything past “We’re not truly free if people keep telling us who’s allowed to have rights and who isn’t” was snide commentary, though not snide enough because the hypocrisy is so loud. I say that we just let people live their lives. How does them being happy impact you? You don’t have to change your life. You don’t even have to like it. You just have to accept that others have the right to be happy, and as long as they are consenting adults that are contributing to society in a positive way, what’s the big deal if they are LGBTQ+ or live some lifestyle that you wouldn’t live? Spoiler: it’s not a big deal. You just have to accept that they have the same freedoms that you have to be happy.

It’s Different… Except It’s the Same

I remember when Tim Thomas stood up for his beliefs, taking a stand that he could not meet President Obama because they simply didn’t share the same beliefs. He felt that he would be betraying his belief system. The right, lauded him as a hero. Standing up for his beliefs. The left, they denounced this. He should stick to hockey, not politics. That’s a slap to the face to his country. Was he a hero to stand up for what he believed in? Sure, I think so. I won’t fault the guy for not compromising his morals. I refuse to do so in my art; why would I admonish a person for doing the same.

Fast forward to now, with President Trump. When an athlete says “I just don’t share the same moral ideals as the president, so I won’t meet him.” The left laud them as a hero. Good for them, standing up for what they believe in. The right? Stick to kicking soccer balls, you are disrespecting your country. I stand by the same position here: you cannot go against your morals, and you need to do what you need to do to go to sleep fine at night. What makes one person a snowflake for this and what makes them a hero for morals? You can’t have it both ways.

For a society that moans and complains about the lack of morality, they seem to only talk about people who share the same morals and belief systems as they do. That’s the difference. The difference in both cases is that they are doing the same thing, but when one person does it they agree with the morals and not in the other case. Does that make the act different? No. It’s just people blindly following like good little supporters. People need to follow their beliefs and have the freedom to do so. As long as they aren’t being hateful and violent to another human being, that’s their right. That’s what it is to be American: Acceptance. You don’t have to agree with them; you just have to accept them.

The same applies to actors and comedians. Why do people like James Woods, Tim Allen, and Jon Voight get to say their opinions to be applauded by the right, but other celebrities are ridiculed by the right for talking about their political ideas? It’s the same thing. You can’t applaud one person while telling the other to “stay in their lane and pretend to act”. It doesn’t work that way. It really doesn’t, I promise. Do I think celebrities have the right to discuss their political beliefs? Sure. I also have the right to not care what they say and just enjoy watching entertainment, as long as it isn’t completely propagandized in any direction. I can handle a little doctrine, but please don’t force feed it. I can’t be bothered if you’re just going to force your beliefs on me.

I have this crazy little philosophy on life of: “If it doesn’t affect me, I don’t care.” When I say this, I don’t mean this from a charity standpoint. I don’t mean that I don’t care about the plight of homelessness because it doesn’t affect me. I’m referring to the choices people make. If someone else wants to have an abortion, that doesn’t affect my life. If two men are in love and want to get married, that doesn’t affect me. That’s their business, not mine. I just have this crazy notion that if people aren’t harming other people or animals in any way, then let them be. Let them think that Fox News is the second coming of Jesus. Let them think that Rachel Maddow is a real journalist. Let a man (or woman) have a sister wives/brother husband situation if they are truly consenting this lifestyle choice. It doesn’t affect your life.

I don’t care that Megan Rapinoe or Tim Thomas doesn’t want to visit a sitting president because they don’t share the same beliefs and morals. I don’t care that Taylor Swift encouraged people to go to the polls and support gay rights. These are small moments in the grand scheme of life. You do you and they will do them. The sooner we get over ourselves, thinking that our way of thinking is the only way to be, the sooner this world can be a little less craptastic.