As an LDS, straight female from the middle of Utah, I probably don’t fit the mold of most advocates of the gay way, but I do have several close friends and extended family members that bring the issues related with their lifestyles straight home to me. I’m not going to be all up in anyone’s face who may feel differently than I do on this topic, but I am going to clearly state on my personal blog what my feelings are on it.
My faith believes that marriage is between a man and a woman. I love my faith, and for two LDS people to get sealed for all time and eternity, who believe in the church and all of its teachings and follow the rules set in place to attend the temple, yes, being straight is one of those qualifications. There are a LOT more than that as well. I will never be an advocate for changing the way the rules are set up within my faith or any other faiths. Because of my belief in God, I just know that fighting anyone’s beliefs there is one futile fight. However, my belief in God also makes me feel strongly about loving others and allowing others their agency to do what they want to do, especially if it is a good thing. I also feel that God knows the hearts of all of his children intimately and individually. If there is a judgement to be passed on the hearts, intentions, and motivations behind any action that is made, He will judge it accordingly. Not me. When I have seen friends and family struggle to be open with who they know themselves to be inside, I realized how harsh anyone is to judge that. I want them to do what feels true to them, as I do what feels true to me, and make the best choices I know how to make. If who they are leads them to choose to be open about their sexuality that is different than mine, good for them for having the courage to choose to share that side of themselves openly with the world. (I use the word “choice” as describing a behavior that you can control, not as describing things within yourself that you cannot and did not choose. Ex: One thing I am inside is tender-hearted. I didn’t choose that, but I can choose to openly show it at certain times, because at the wrong time, it can appear as a weakness and I don’t want to show that. I wanted to make that distinction between what we choose and what we do not choose.) So that is how I religiously feel on the subject. My religion doesn’t advocate gay marriage, but my faith advocates loving others. As long as nobody is ever fighting to change my religion’s rules, I have no problem what their religion or belief system is. To my knowledge, no gay couples have stormed the temple, wanting to be married. Why would I want them to be forbidden to be married outside of it? I will defend religious freedom zealously, but I will never defend the right to withhold rights from others if they don’t agree with or practice your religion.
Politically and socially, marriage has become an institution that represents more than what it has historically for religions. The moment the government started giving perks to people who were married, and insurance companies and hospitals started deciding who was allowed to be claimed as what, that is when marriage became more than just a religion’s domain. Sorry, but that is how it is. One side or another is going to have to give, eventually. Either married people are going to need to lose their rights and privileges granted to them by the state (never going to happen), or gay couples are going to need to be granted the same rights. Saying that gay people cannot marry and obtain these rights because “I don’t believe in it” is the same as a racist person saying that a black person can’t go to school, because “they don’t believe in it.” I know that race and sexual orientation are different, but it’s pretty easy to show the nonsensical argument on the state and government level when you make the comparison. Or, if you believe that sexual orientation is a choice, then so is religion. You can compare taking away a gay person’s rights to taking away a Jews rights, if you would prefer. I’m not great with remembering history and all of its details, but the latter seemed to be a major part of the last World War, right? Socially, marriage is the ultimate symbol of commitment. You are committing to the state and government that no matter what kind of shenanigans this other person is going to get in to, you are tied to them and share responsibility. They screw up their credit, yours could get screwed up, too. They rack up debt and die suddenly, you’ll foot the bill. They get black balled from the block parties in your neighborhood, you’re uninvited, too. It’s a serious commitment when it comes to social and government recognition. If two people who are of age decide that they want to make that kind of commitment to one another, then let them. Don’t tell them that they can just live together, build a life together, and then never get any of the actual perks that comes with sharing that kind of commitment. Two people can put their name on a lease or bank account, but that doesn’t mean that if one of them were to be hospitalized suddenly, the other person on that lease or bank account would have any say in their care. See the conundrum built by not recognizing gay unions within our government?
I hope I didn’t offend anyone by my little post here, but I just wanted to clearly state that I do support gay marriage, and why I have come to that conclusion. I should say, I support the GL community, but the BTQ part, I really don’t know enough about… I’m actually very confused by the T part. Here’s an open letter to RuPaul. Give me a call. I have a lot of questions… and where exactly does the Q come in? Either way, happy PRIDE week from Salt Lake City! I’m PROUD of you! Love, CoCo!
PS: If you ever say the title of my post here, “That is SO GAY!” as an insult and I hear you, you are going to get an earful… Also, I hold an equal opportunity no PDA rule. I don’t want to see anyone making out in public. Period.