I am a tax paying American citizen who lives in NC, and yet in the country that I love, the "Home of the Free and the Brave," we are still standing in the past, denying the basic rights of marriage to our tax-paying lesbian and gay citizens.
I was never a huge "marriage" person, but when I started doing the research for the coming out and relationship books I have written for gay women, I realized that LGBT people are being denied over 1,000 rights that married, straight people have. That fact made me realize how important the basic right of legal marriage is for sure. If you'd like to read the list of the rights that unmarried lesbian and gay couples don't have, please go here:
Just think, a MURDERER on DEATH ROW can get married, but a committed LGBT couple who has been together for years CAN NOT? Drunk people in Las Vegas who just met in a bar can get married, BUT LGBT People CAN NOT? Young adults over 18 who barely know each
other can run off and get married, but same-sex couples who have been in committed relationships for years can not?
My female partner and I have been together over 18 years, and we have paid plenty or taxes during both of our lives, and yet we don't have the same rights as convicted murderers, serial rapists and child molesters? Does that seem right?
These are the questions that come to me when I hear homophobic comments concerning LGBT people and our rights to be treated like every other tax paying citizen of the United States. And to top it off, much of this discrimination is based on personal religious beliefs, here in a country that was founded by the idea of separation of church and state...
If the word "marriage" is such a big deal, then why not call ALL LEGAL licensed partnerships between 2 consenting adults "Civil Unions", and all ceremonies that are performed in a church between 2 consenting adults can still be called Marriages. Legal "marriage" and the religious ceremony are two different things anyway. Why not just call them two different names for everyone?
Each of us has to be strong to be who we truly are. In the last 50 years we've come so far concerning the rights of all US citizens, and yet we have so much further to go. Will we be brave, or will we stand in the shadows of denial that sexual orientation is not a choice but how many of our citizens are born?
It's all up to those of us who believe that no matter what our race, religion, sex or sexual orientations may be, we are all created equal, and that we should be treated that way, especially in a country that has always been known for its global humanitarianism.
“How To Be A Happy Lesbian: A Coming Out Guide”
“Coming Out Advice for Lesbian and Bisexual Women"
“Relationship Advice for Lesbian and Bisexual Women"
Indy Week • 302 E. Pettigrew St., Suite 300, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
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