Wake Up!

Posted by: Andee / Category: , , , ,


I have already posted about this twice today, but I can't stop thinking about it.  So, here comes yet another rant, from yours truly, about why everyone should have the same rights.  Ignore me if you want, you have probably heard it before :)

My big brother is gay.  He is an artist, he can draw like you wouldn't believe... amazing sketches of movie characters, horses, and landscapes once decorated my bedroom because my big brother was that good.  

I remember one Christmas sitting down with my brothers with our new coloring books and crayons that Santa left us.  My little bro and I couldn't figure out why Steve's (his name has been changed because I don't have his permission to out him like this... that would be really messed up...) pictures were so much better than ours.  Steve sat down and showed us that if we colored the image using the same stroke instead of changing the direction of our crayon all the time, the image would look cleaner.  He also taught us how to outline the image in a darker shade to give it depth.  I will never forget sitting with him, and I still use those techniques when I feel artsy enough to sit down with a coloring book.  Not only is he an amazing artist... he is a teacher.  Little Bro and I picked up his techniques in less than a half hour.  He was patient and kind, and I still think he could have a huge career teaching what comes naturally to him.

Steve lived with his Mom, so I don't know the details about his daily life... I love him very much, and I remember looking forward to the weekends where he would stay with us.  I would plan little games to play, and they drove him crazy.  Little bro and I annoyed the hell out of him. :)

One day, Steve told us that he made up a game for us to play.  Little bro and I were excited, and we asked Steve what the name of the game was... he said, "Find Steve!"  It was a version of hide and seek, using the entire block we lived on.  Little bro and I searched high and low for Steve, but we didn't find him.  We eventually gave up, and started waiting for him on the picnic table in the backyard.  Steve came home a couple hours later, and we found out he was playing at one of his friends' house.  He tricked us, but we didn't care.  We were excited for him to be there... and we had fun.

Steve never dated, and I am sure my parents, along with his mother, had thoughts that he might be gay.  It was never really talked about.  Little bro and I were too little to even understand what being gay meant.  It didn't matter. He was a brother and we loved him.

This is what I don't understand... why do people change how they feel when they learn someone they already know and love is gay?  Is it religion?  I don't think so... probably for most, but the common denominator in my eyes is that it makes others judge them. It's not about their gay or lesbian friend or family member being happy... it's about how other people will look at them.  It's really selfish and messed up.  

I haven't heard from Steve in many years.  I am pretty sure I know what town and state he lives in, but that is about it.  Last I heard he was in trouble with the law because he was caught drinking and driving.  He was also drinking heavily at a family function, and it seemed to my family members that he might have a problem (I was unable to attend and didn't see it first hand, because I was in Orlando at the time).  

I wonder where Steve is all the time.  Is he happy?  Does he have someone in his life?  Is he okay?  Does he know that I love him no matter what?  I wish I didn't have to worry about that.  

I wonder if Steve's life would have been different if he wasn't gay.  He was no doubt bullied and teased in high school because he wasn't dating or people put two and two together... is that what made him start drinking?  Maybe, maybe not.  

The reason I am fighting so hard for this isn't because of Steve.  Steve is a grown man who can make his own decisions in life.  I will always be here for him and I hope he knows that.  The reason I am so vocal about this issue is because there are little boys and girls out there who know they are different... who know that they are not like everyone else... and it breaks my heart to think they don't have anyone to turn to.

Where would Steve have gone to talk to someone about this?  Certainly not to anyone in the town we lived in.  Everyone was religious and Mormon... it would just make things worse.

Gay marriage is important because its an understanding that everyone is loved and appreciated for who they are.  If people feel loved and accepted, they might not turn to things like drugs and alcohol.  They might not think about suicide all the time because they don't feel accepted or loved.

It's important because it's the right thing to do.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is trying desperately to ban gay marriage.  They are going to the members of the church and asking for donations for the effort.  They are asking their members to volunteer their time in the campain.  They are putting themselves smack down in the middle of politics, which is something they claim they never do.  

Another lie.  Shocking, isn't it?

I know I can't stop people from thinking that being gay is wrong, but I can remind these people that their beliefs shouldn't impose on people that are not even a part of their group.  Why should you force others to live up to your "standards?"  If you don't like gay marriage, don't participate in it... but you don't have the right to make that decision for everyone else.  

The United States of America was founded on the right that all men are created equal.  Why is that so hard for people to understand?

The Mormon Church is threatening to punish those in the church who are being vocal about disagreeing with them.  Some of my friends have been threatened with excommunication, and others have been sick over the fact that  the church leaders they knew and loved were asking them to do something off of their moral compass.  By making these threats, they are trying to make everyone conform.  They are trying to make everyone feel as if God himself told the prophet to do this (I am not saying that was actual revelation... it's just how it appears because people are told to follow the prophet no matter what).  

They are out of line, and they are wrong.  Where is the free agency if people feel pushed to make a decision like this?  They either do what the church says, or they are treated as if they don't have enough faith.

I am embarrassed at times that I used to stick up for the church when people called it a cult, or made fun of things like polygamy and temple garments.  The church leaders are the ones making this decision, not the general membership, and the general membership has no real choice.

Steve is out there somewhere, and I hope he is happy.  I hope he has love, a home of his own, maybe even a dog.  I hope he still puts his pencil to paper and creates beautiful things.  

I wish he never had to deal with the constant judgment and taunting of the people in his life.  It shouldn't have happened, and we can all do our part to make sure it stops happening to other people.

Andee


6 comments:

  1. Demand More Says:

    Love, love, love you!!!!

    I don't know what I can do but I want to do more than put my name on signforsomething.org. Any ideas? I just feel sick over this issue.

  1. Joel McDonald Says:

    Andee,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings about Steve and the wonderful person that he is, and the affects of his being gay has had on him.

    I began opposing any attempt to deny homosexuals the right to marry when the marriage protection amendment was being debated. I wrote every representative I had at every level of the government. It is outrageous to "define marriage" in such a way that would void the progress of equal rights for a minority using the Constitution. I believe that the Supreme Court will eventually use that very document to declare any such attempt to limit the rights of homosexuals to be unconstitutional. Until then, those of us to know and understand need to always be vocal.

    Thank you.

  1. Andee Says:

    Thanks for the comments as always guys...

    Demand More, I don't know about you, but any time this is discussed in front of me I plan on voicing my opinion. I don't care who is in the room, or who it might offend anymore.

    The truth is, they are offending me by saying it to begin with.

    We need to get the word out to everyone and everywhere. Talk with your friends and family, even if you don't think they will be receptive. God, this makes me sound like a missionary.

    Erm... nevermind. Do what you need to do. :D

  1. Anonymous Says:

    Hi,
    I decided to read all of your blog 2008 after a random click trying to find another answer to an LDS question....yep I's so dumb I investigated.

    The problem with equality and gender in the church really bothered me though. So much pain there. But women are so much more righteous then men and all that and all those references to heavenly mother.

    I feel like throwing up. I didn't join the dots at all.
    Not heavenly mother....heavenly mothers. That's really sick. I definitely don't want anything at all to do with that one....blech. Why didn't I see that it had to be so?

    I am so grateful to you for writing this blog.

    I wonder if Steve doesn't drink a whole lot when he's not in contact with Mormandom...you know...faith promoting rumours and all. You can be happy and gay : ) as many happily married gay couples affirm.

    They haven't a hope of changing the legislation...you need to see the *real *stats on how many mormons there actually are, the numbers they quote are not true...nowhere near enough to vote it out..... Have a cupcake and enjoy the show...this will be as good as the whole Romney thingy. In fact, just like people voted him out because he was LDS...people will vote this in cause they don't want to identify with being in the weird spectrum.

    Take care now.

    WANDERER

  1. [kɹeɪ̯ɡ̊] Says:

    But women are so much more righteous then men...

    No, they're not. That's ridiculous.

    Sexism is wrong (both morally and scientifically), no matter what direction it's coming from.

  1. Andee Says:

    I couldn't agree more.

    I find it offensive that Mormons think I should WANT to be some guy's eternal celestial wife and pop out spiritual child after spiritual child! That is supposed to be my reward for things?

    Are you kidding me?

    What do the men get?

    Hmmm... millions of spiritual wives, celestial sex, they get to be Gods of their own planet (or not if you are Gordon B. Hinkley on Larry King Live).

    It's so messed up!!

    AERFSDJFH EW3 euwERUF[SD0AF9VUOSDKFJ A;SD FCJS;ozXCJ;a