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My last post got some interesting comments and rather than make my comment section the length of a novel (you know, the one no one is reading), I thought I would just respond to everything in another post.

I don’t think I expressed myself as well, or as fully, as I could have.  That has more to do with my aversion to conflict than anything else. However, if I can’t manage to express it here, then I really have no business writing this blog at all.

First, I hope it was evident that I’m not against gay marriage.  However, it is not an issue I care deeply about. It’s okay, I’ve been accused of being a bad lesbian before. It won’t hurt my feelings.

Now to the rest of the discussion.

Lass said: I think the thing that got me riled was, as you pointed out, the fact that Baxter didn’t seem comfortable announcing this – she seemed to be forced into it by some tabloid threatening her. I give her credit for taking control of the situation, but it was awkward to watch.

Exactly. From what I understand, she was living an “out” life. There’s a difference between being out in your personal life and having the national media looking at you, though. I don’t think celebrity makes you fair game. If I publish Risk and it becomes a sensation (please, God. Thanks), it does not give anyone the right to snoop into my private life. Putting myself out there by writing a book is offering only a part of myself to the public – the part I choose to share through my words. Meredith Baxter is an actress and far more used to the spotlight than I ever would be – but in my opinion, actors really only offer a part of themselves to the public (their ability as actors) and they are as entitled to a private life as anyone else.

Heather said: my partner likens it to the rights fight for african americans, including interracial marriage, which was prohibited very recently in our country’s history. but who gives a shit about that now? probably a couple wackos in their private militia bunker in northern idaho, and that’s it. no one else cares, because it’s happened so much, it’s been 1000% normalized.

I see where you’re going with that, and I think you have a point, but I don’t think it’s really the same thing. People don’t see being African American as a choice. They do see being gay as a choice – because at the very least, a gay person can be celibate and not act on their feelings. A black person can’t ever be not black (Michael Jackson notwithstanding).  Sexual issues go far, far deeper than racial issues and it will take a very, very long time before it becomes a non-issue.

Hotchick said: Who cares if tabloids were going to out her. How much crap do they put out that isn’t true? Tons and tons. If I was standing in line at the grocery, and I saw that on the front page of the Un-Inquirer, I would have though it a bunch of bull.

You would have thought it was bull because you have functioning brain cells – most people don’t. And they do believe that stuff.  It seems to me that the proverbial gun to her head was the public scrutiny, not being out. If she was in the closet, she wouldn’t have gone on a lesbian cruise and she wouldn’t have been snapped with her girlfriend. I don’t know her (obviously), but I don’t think she was coming from a place of shame. I think it was a place of  “Holy shit, why can’t I be left alone?”

Hotchick also said: But some people truely beleive in marraige (and Santa Claus), so we shouldn’t spoil it for them.
There needs to be a first, second and third step. Because if not, it wouldn’t be normal to see interacial relationships. In 30 years, I hope this thing is old news. But if those who care about it don’t keep fighting – it ain’t (yes, I used the word ain’t) gonna happen.

Again, I don’t really think it can be equated to interracial marriage. People view it as a choice – and a deviant choice at that.

Len said: I have a t-shirt for you: http://www.topatoco.com/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=TO&Product_Code=QC-LGBT-BLACK&Category_Code=QC-SHIRTS

If everyone wore that shirt, the world would be a happy place!

I think we should keep working toward it – it is a worthy goal. What I see, though, are people hanging their hats on the equality/acceptance issue and I don’t see that happening in my lifetime. If/when gay marriage comes up for a vote, I will vote for it. That’s my way of fighting.  I’m not ever going to be on a float in a gay pride parade, though, so you shouldn’t hold your breath for that. To me, it seems like the people who are most passionate about it are in your face and completely over the top. They want to bludgeon everyone with it and force people to deal with it. I think that’s a tactical mistake and it will delay (if not defeat) the immediate goal.

All of you touched on one fact that, to me, is the most important: Being out is a personal choice.

Because of where I live, I choose to be careful about the people I confide in. It isn’t up to Hotchick (who knows me personally) to out me.  It wasn’t up to Perez Hilton and the like to out Meredith Baxter. Whether you think she had to or not, the point is that she believed she had to do a preemptive strike – and being forced into that kind of decision is never right. I’ve seen people get outted against their will – and it’s happened to me.

Gay rights is an important issue, but equally important is the fact that it is a highly personal issue. The same people who demand acceptance and respect are some of the same ones who do not accept a closeted person’s right to remain closeted. If that’s not a lack of respect, I don’t know what is.

One of the main arguments is that marriage is hardly sacred because half of all marriages end in divorce, so therefore gays should be allowed to marry.

I say no one should be allowed to marry. Let’s dissolve all marriages right now and force people to think for and rely on themselves.

Problem solved.

You’re welcome.