This month, New York became the most recent and most populous state to allow same-sex marriages. The Senate vote was close, 33-29, and is already being challenged in court. Republican Senator Mark Grisanti, who ran for office on an anti-gay platform, came in with late support. “I cannot deny a person, a human being, a taxpayer, a worker, the people of my district and across this state, the State of New York, and those people who make this the great state that it is the same rights that I have with my wife.” "I was wrong" to oppose those rights, he said.
It takes courage to admit that. Even former vice-president Dick Cheney has come around to publicly stating that "freedom means freedom for everyone" when asked his position on gay marriage. Would that Obama be so brave.
We are a country built on slowly figuring out and correcting our mistakes-- slavery, child labor, women's rights to name a few. We talk a big talk about equality, but we are easily threatened by change.
This week I am missing the wedding of a dear friend. She's in Canada, and her celebration occurs on the tail end of my already-spent vacation, and as much as I regret not being part of it, I couldn't make it. She'd asked me months ago if I could be her celebrant, but while gay marriage is legal in Canada, my officiant credentials aren't. I spoke with her last week and asked her to tell me something about her beloved. "She was my first love, and is my forever love". Although they'd met many, many years ago, it hadn't occurred to Lois at the time she could ever be with the love of her life. How things change. How good that they do.
I don't get the fear over gay marriage. What's so scary about love and commitment? I've heard some arguments that frankly seem ludicrous to me. It threatens straight marriages? I don't see how. I've seen a lot of straight marriages threatened by other heterosexuals, but not gays. Marriage is for procreation? Then I guess we should nullify all couples who can't or choose not to have children. In the New Testament, Jesus says nothing against homosexuality. While there's a few (6-7) verses against homosexuality in the Old Testament, there are also admonishments against engaging in everything from shellfish ingestion to mixing fibers in fabric. (For a humorous take on this, see the infamous "Letter to Dr. Laura").
I do fear angry, constricted people who impose their agendas on others. I am much more threatened by the Anders Behreing Breiviks of the world than the couple featured in the video below. Love expands. Fear contracts. Let's grow.
"We need more light about each other. Light creates understanding, understanding creates love, love creates patience, and patience creates unity."
— Malcolm X
Welcome to the middle path
- Jana Svoboda, LCSW
- Sporadic photos and notes from a Psyche-midwife, cheerleader, anthropologist--aka clinical social worker in therapy practice. Photos are usually mine except for those of historical events/famous people. Music relevant to the daily topic is often included in a web video embedded below the blog. Click on highlighted links in the copy to get to source or supplemental material. For contact information, see my website @ janasvoboda.com or click on the button to the right below. Join in the conversation.