Letter to the editor: April 26, 2010

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Hey Harrison,
First off, thank you for writing this op ed. I love the fact that our country has freedom of speech, so whether or not I agree with you is not the issue. You said what you felt, and that’s a difficult thing to do. What’s even more difficult is handling the criticism and hateful remarks back.

Sadly, The LGBTQ community gets these hateful remarks everyday without needing to say a word. Gay men who dress how they would like to dress are often stared at, made fun of, and sometimes beaten simply because of their clothes. Lesbians who dress the way they would like to dress, or how they would like to wear their hair, are often called names, or verbally abused by men who think they can “fix” these girls lesbian ways.

I will state my opinion on each of your points. As an “out” lesbian I will have my bias on some answers. I’d also like to point out that as I type this I’m in fear that because I have chosen to use my full name that maybe, one day, this post will ruin my chances of being a teacher (Briggs initiative anyone?). That’s how bad it is for the LGBTQ community.

1. We can call it whatever we want. I personally would prefer marriage…as in…two people together, bonded, marriage. If I HAVE to put another title to it I suppose same-sex marriage is fine. Gay marriage is alright, but then I think maybe the girls would like “Lesbian marriage” more. Then again, that one is a little long and doesn’t roll of the tongue as well as “marriage” does. Also I’m not sure a gay person would want to marry a straight person. Sex isn’t a deal breaker for some, but I don’t see myself wanting to come home and sleep with a man for the rest of my life. So, in conclusion, yes, a gay person can marry, but I don’t see why they would sign themselves up for that kind of torture.

2. Harrison, and to all others, if you are not black or gay I don’t see how you can even give an opinion on this matter. The fact is, until you’ve walked a step in a gay persons shoes, you will never know their struggle. Same goes for black people. We can even say the same for men who try to say the women’s rights movement was a bunch of jibberish. Let’s talk about things gay people can’t do. Gay people are not allowed to donate blood, whether they have AIDS or not. Gay people can’t go into a church without having someone try to “show them the way”. Gay people were almost fired from their jobs in schools because of their sexuality, we really had to fight for that one. Gay people can not get married. Gay people are beaten, raped, harassed, and discriminated against every day because of their sexuality, not because of their personality or anything they’ve done. We are not allowed in the military and we are still, in some places, not allowed to live or work. Fighting for basic equality was seen in the civil rights movement and the women’s rights movement, and it is seen now in the gay rights movement.

3. The only people I want to approve my lifestyle and my love is myself. In the words of RuPaul (yes, I am going there) “If you can’t love yourself, how the hell you gonna love anyone else?” A part of me wanted my parents to be okay with me being gay, and thankfully in 2005 when I finally came out to them, sweaty palms and shaky hands, they did. They loved me no matter what. I don’t care if Bob down the street is okay with me and my wife. To me, that’s the equivalent of Bob not liking my choice in paint color for my fence, or the way I park my car on the street. Sorry Bob, I pay taxes for this house, for my spot in America, I can do what I want. More importantly Bob, the fact that I’m married to a woman is no worse then the fact that you’ve been married 3 times.

4. Values. I’m thinking that each person has different values no matter the subject. For instance, early America was all about getting new land and doing what was best for the country. Unfortunately that included killing millions of Natives in order to protect what Americans “valued”. Now, we don’t go killing people like that anymore do we? Values change. Religion. Oi Vay. I believe in God the Father yada yada yada, and I do. I believe God created me to write this response. I also believed God put my partner on this Earth for us to find each other, and then to spend all of our lives loving, caring, and protecting each other. My values are to become and educator and make sure that no child is unable to read, to marry the woman that I love, to raise MY children to be productive members of society, and most importantly to love every day as if it were my last. I would love to “impose” that last value on everyone. I am a Lesbian, and those are my values. I dare you to tell me they are wrong.

5. General Standards of which can not be broken don’t exist. Everyone on this planet, even the Pope, have given up their standards at one point. Only WE, as in each individual, can give ourselves standards. There is no way that one can claim that their standard is superior to others. A standards argument is impossible.

6.In 2005 my mother made the statement that if gay people can marry then people will soon be able to marry their dogs. I don’t think I’ve ever cried so much in my life. After getting composure I stood in front of my mother and told her I was gay. I kind of felt like maybe Eve and I were one in the same at that moment. Standing before judgment, feeling “naked”, and saying “this is what it is” whether it be sin or not, this is what it is. My Mother took some time to figure it out in her head. “okay” she said, and she took a few weeks until we could address it again. “If you love someone, and they love you, then thats all that matters”….followed by a “be responsible” speech. Yes, I have been. I follow the standards set before me by my parents and by myself. I’m 22, I date over 18. I have consensual sex. I never drive drunk. I don’t do drugs. And I treat others as they would like to be treated. I am a typical 22 year old student at CSUN, and I would like to be married, with an official certificate, with rights, with the ability to say “this is my wife”, the chance to tell my kids that both Mommies love you more then the world itself, and to be able to be together on our final days and tell my wife that I will see her soon in Heaven. I want that. This is my standard.

7. There are beautiful people in the World. Hate, clouds that beauty. I have seen ugly in both sides of this debate. Name calling, vandalism, hate crimes. It saddens me. The people who hold signs that say “God hates fags” outside of a funeral are ugly and filled with hate. That’s who we should be yelling at. Do I think it’s fair to pick on those who try to state their opinion in A PC way? No.

If you would like to publish this in the Sundial, then by all means do it. I just hope that whomever reads this can do so with an open mind and an open heart. I was smiling the whole time, so I hope others do the same.

-Briana Kramer
Junior, English major