Thursday, August 18, 2011

Gay Rights, Civil Rights

Hey, Bradley here.

I was talking with a relative of mine about the "gay community" and how people perceive it as a whole. First of all, when people think about the gay community, they think about how lascivious or just how promiscuous it is, but then again, so is the straight community you see at bars, clubs, etc. It's only common sense that not all gays are like that, just like it's only common sense that not all straights are like that. But when it comes to people's gut reactions, it's amazing how people still feel that way about the gays.

In this conversation with said relative, we came to the agreement that we look forward to the day when sexuality is really no big deal anymore. One day, we'll probably look back on this whole Gay-Rights fiasco much like we look back on the Civil-Rights movement and say "What were we thinking?" I really hope we get to that point where people are judged not for who they love, but who they are as a person.

This comparison between the Gay-Rights movement and the Civil-Rights movement has been made quite a bit actually. It's a major stance taken by politicians (like our president for example):

(I hope that link works... embedding was disabled)

If not, it basically went like this:

Obama: I would support a civil union with all the same legal rights as marriage.

Reporter Guy: But doesn't that sort of sound like the "Separate-but-Equal" argument?

(separate-but-equal, of course, being a reference to the constitutional doctrine justifying segregation)

Obama: It's my job as President to focus on the tangible rights of people, not necessarily to change the attitudes of people.

His actual words are much more eloquent than my shabby paraphrase, but the sentiment is there - that civil unions with all the rights of married couples certainly gets the job done; let the churches and voters decide what to make of the attitudes towards same-sex couples, but "my job as president" is to enforce laws and protect the actual rights of people.

What I take away from this is just how the Gay-Rights movement is comparing itself to the Civil-Rights movement. Whether or not that's a smart move, I don't know. But it's worth noticing.

Again, I hope someday we look back on all of this hullabaloo about sexual orientation just like we look back on the Civil Rights movement and say "What were we thinking... Sexual orientation shouldn't have been such a big deal."


  1. I hope as well that we look back and wonder what on earth we were thinking. And I believe that we will reach that point. I appreciate Obama's words, and, quite frankly, as someone who does not believe in marriage as far as religion and other societal recognition goes, I believe that the only thing worth fighting for is the legal rights associated with the joining of couples.

    I think all rights-movements can be compared to each other. They're all fairly similar. But I will say that women got the vote without shedding blood. :)

  2. The thing I don't really understand is why government acknowledges marriage and gives benefits to them? Marriage originates from a religious ceremony and as such must be separate from the state (you know the whole separation of church and state rules). So why cant we just have Civil Union for everybody, and if people that follow a particular religion want to get Married then let them. Why would it be so hard to do that?