Tuesday, July 3, 2012

We Need Solidarity to Reach FULL Marriage Equality

Most people are familiar with the struggle of gays and lesbians to have the freedom to marry in the USA and many other places around the world. Some people can remember the struggle for interracial marriage in the USA. When someone cites the freedom for polygamous marriage or consanguineous marriage, some people dismiss those ideas. As disappointing as that is, it is not surprising.

Some LGBT people don’t understand the desire for polygamous or consanguineous marriage, often because the LGBT people discussing the issue aren’t interested in such relationships, or they find the very idea of them repulsive, and so they don’t see why those other relationships should have the freedom to marry.

Likewise, some people may want the freedom to polygynous marriage, but don’t understand polyandry or grouping, or same-sex marriage, or consanguineous relationships, or even interracial relationships, and find those ideas repulsive, and so they don’t see why those other relationships should have the freedom to marry.

And there are people involved in heterosexual consanguineous relationships who don’t want to get married and don’t understand or are repulsed by same-sex relationships or polyamorous relationships, and so don’t see the need for those groups to have the freedom to marry.

There are people who experience Genetic Sexual Attraction (GSA) who refrain from acting on their feelings and want to stop other people from acting on their GSA, or they don’t believe in or condemn Familial Sexual Attraction, and don’t understand the need for consanguineous marriage.

Like many heterosexuals, some LGBT people do not want to get married, and may struggle to see just how important the freedom to marry is.

There are interracial couples in the USA who have exercised their freedom to marry, something that would have been denied to them not long ago, who do not see the need for others to have their freedom to marry.

All of these people have something in common. They all face denial of their rights, discrimination, and sometimes worse in many places around the world just because they don’t pass the sex-negative, heterosexual, monogamous, “racial purity” or nonconsanguineous tests set up by those who want to force everyone else to conform to their narrow view of sexuality and marriage, or want to keep other people from having what they have.

It’s all a matter of fairness and equality. Equality just for some is not equality. A person has the right to not only have a relationship with, but marry the consenting person or persons of his or her choice. It is time to allow everybody to exercise this right. We can get there if we have solidarity. Don’t just stand up for your freedom to marry; stand up for the freedom for all to marry. Don’t just be an ally for a friend’s right to a same-sex marriage; stand of the rights of all. That’s true marriage equality.

You don’t have the like what other people choose to do. If you don’t want a same-sex relationship, or a poly relationship, or an interracial relationship or a consanguineous relationship, or you do not want to get married under any circumstances, that is your choice and you have that freedom. But you should support the rights of other people to choose for themselves, based on what they feel is best for them. Love is love.

The next time someone says the freedom to marry someone of the same-sex will lead to polygamy or incest, instead of throwing other people under the bus, respond with something like, “What’s wrong with letting consenting adults do what they want with each other? I support marriage equality, period. Would you want someone telling you that you couldn’t get married?” We need to let people know that it isn't okay to discriminate. We need to reach out to everyone who is seeking the freedom to marry and let them know they aren't alone.

In addition to fairness, marriage equality will aid the health of those who will finally be able to marry. It will add stability to their relationships and increase stability in communities.

There are people you know - people in your family, neighbors, coworkers, police officers, postal carriers, firefighters, teachers, people of all walks of life - who don't have the freedom to marry the person or persons they love. That's not right.

Let’s all stand up for true equality: full marriage equality.

(This was adapted from my page "Why Support Marriage Equality?")
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