I was watching The Real Housewives of New Jersey and there was this debate over the use of the word fag. I couldn't believe that there was even a debate about the approval or disapproval over the word, because I know it's a word that I don't use because it's not okay to use. I can't believe that there are still people in the world that are okay with the use of the word and allow it to flow out of their mouths so casually. To me the word is offensive, crude, and unnecessary. So what someone is different from you, that does not give you the right to call them a name.
It's 2010 and the days of equality are still so far away. I remember being a young girl and being called a N*gger for the first time. I felt low, embarrassed, ashamed, and inferior. I had no idea that the word I was being called was something that people used to cover up their own insecurities as human beings. When I realized what I know now, I began to feel sorry for them. They would never know a person like me because they hate my skin color...what a shame.
I now find it ironic how I'm a part of a discriminated community that discriminates against another. I grew up in a world that was afraid of change. I still have friends from the old community that don't like to talk to people from another part of town. For why? I don't know. But I do know it used to drive me crazy. I graduated from high school and met new people. They were a different breed of folk. Out of this new breed I began a friendly relationship with a young man everyone knew was a homosexual. Did I care he was a gay man? No. Did others? Hell yes, but it didn't bother me.
I loved that fact that he was so open about his sexuality and wanted to teach me everything that I didn't know about mine. We didn't have a show me yours and I'll show you mine sit down, it was honestly a talk about feelings. I discovered at that time that besides having sex with men, he was no different from me. We both wanted the same things out of relationships: LOVE.
I from that point on stopped judging people based on what they did in their personal life. What the hell right do I have to tell someone that the way they love is wrong because I do it the "traditional" way? I, as a mere mortal on this earth, have no right at all to tell someone how they should live their life, unless their lifestyle is causing me physical harm. Homosexuality has failed to do the latter, so I stay in my place.
I have family members who make fucked up comments about homosexuality and about homosexuals that I try my hardest to ignore. Why do I ignore it? Because they are from an older generation and regardless of how I personally feel I was raised to respect my elders. However, when I hear my cousins younger than me talking about their hatred of gay people, it blows me away. My heart hurts and I wonder why someone would allow their child to hold that kind of ill malice in their heart. It's sick and this is how the cancer spreads.
There are some family members who tell me that they don't care about gay people but don't want them to have the rights to get married because it's an abomination against God. These are the same people who lie, drink, cheat, smoke, fornicate, curse, judge, and gamble and they tell me what God does and doesn't accept. Okay instead of telling me all about the homosexual abomination why don't you reflect on your own life and figure out what God would and would not accept.
False Bible waving is a major contribution to the ignorance behind homophobia. People fear what they don't know and that ignorance leads to hate. I went to a church ceremony a few weeks ago and heard a failed attempt at comedy at the expense of homosexuals. I wanted to scream and call everyone who did laugh a hypocrite, but I stayed calm. I was sure that same older man would go home and get his kicks while jerking off to gay porn, because they are always the main ones. I have seen them during my days as a Boystown loyalist. The old men with Jesus Loves You bumper stickers, picking up tranny prostitutes, and then heading home to their unsuspecting wives.
My baby cousin is a homophobe, and it bugs the hell out of me. He once told me that he hated Prince because he's a fag. What homosexuality and good music have to do with one another is beyond me. This is also a young man that uses the word gay as a substitute for the words bad, stupid, or weird. I don't believe the words gay, bad, stupid, and weird have the same Webster’s definition. Maybe I'm using the wrong edition. I tell him the word is not an adjective used to replace that of a negative, but he doesn't listen. He believes it's okay because of what he experienced in the home. Children are mirrors of what is practiced in the home. It's a part of what they believe is real. How a child deciphers what is real vs. the unreal depends on the relatable influences mostly coming from everyday influences. And if a child is in the company of his or her parents everyday then most likely those influences are the parents.
The option to continue or stop homophobia lies with us, the generation before the next. A long time ago I made a conscious decision to end hatred of all people with me. My children will not know hate, for they will not experience such things; at least not from me. It’s the least I can do to stop this spread of this unnecessary cancer.