Top Of My Head

Thoughts on everything from Politics to Video Games

Get a Backbone

I have been an out lesbian for over twenty years. I have marched, attended rallies, written blogs and lived my life with the idea that I can’t expect to get my Constitutional rights while hiding in a closet. I’m out to my family, friends and co-workers. Being out hasn’t always been all wine and roses, either. I’ve been harassed, fired and insulted because I am a lesbian. My life now is pretty well set, but there are still those on the fringes of my life who would rather I go away or, at least, pretend I’m not gay to make things easier on them.
But, I’m not going to live a lie just to make life a little easier or make someone else happy. I don’t think that anyone should. If you’re against gay marriage, then I think you should put signs in your yard and participate openly in the political process. I know your beliefs are wrong and misguided, but if you believe it, then you shouldn’t hide it. Be proud of your narrow straightness!

Yell it from the mountain tops! Man up!

Apparently, one of the groups that helped scare the state of California into voting for Proposition 8 – the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) – doesn’t agree with me. They think that their supporters and donors should have a right to privacy. They shouldn’t have to provide their donor lists to state election officials.
“But, Julie, why would they feel this way? What could they possibly have to hide?” I hear you asking.
Glad you brought it up – I have an answer.
They’re scared. They’re scared that their donors might be harassed for their beliefs. They filed a lawsuit which went right up to the US Supreme Court – Doe v. Reed – to protect the privacy of their followers.
(I went to their site to see what they wrote about the case, but I couldn’t find one word about it. I searched the case name, looked through their archives – nothing. I thought that was odd and I only mention it to see if any of you, my gentle readers, can find anything.)
“So, Julie, what happened with the suit?” I hear you ask.
Well, I’ll tell you – they lost and they lost big: 8-1. Surprised? No? Well, I am – a little.
Anthony Scalia, a man with whom I usually disagree, wrote:

“There are laws against threats and intimidation; and harsh criticism, short of unlawful action, is a price our people have traditionally been willing to pay for self governance. Requiring people to stand up in public for their political acts fosters civic courage, without which democracy is doomed. For my part, I do not look forward to a society which…campaigns anonymously…and even exercises the direct democracy of initiative and referendum hidden from public scrutiny and protected from the accountability of criticism. This does not resemble the Home of the Brave.”

In other words, get a backbone.
I never mind when someone disagrees with me, but when someone places an anonymous comment knocking me (someone once called me lazy, fat and white trash) it really gets me. It’s not the comment that bothers me. I’ve been called worse before and I’m sure in the future, I’ll be called worse again. It’s the anonymous part. They’ll sit behind the Anonymous title and spout things about me that aren’t true and they don’t even have enough guts to stand up and say, “My name is Robert Smith and I think you’re a bitch.”

And, for me, it’s the same for the anti-gay crowd. If you want to say, “I don’t think you and Cheryl should be allowed to get married,” that’s fine. You have a First Amendment right to say it and believe it, but if you don’t have the guts to stand up and say, “My name is Robert Smith and I don’t think you and Cheryl should be allowed to get married” then I think you should keep your mouth shut. I have a lot more respect for someone who speaks their mind in public. I think if you give money to any organization that runs ads in support of one candidate or another; you should have to have your name on a list given over to state or federal election officials.
If you believe in a cause – any cause – enough to give money to it, you should believe in it enough to stand up and be counted or stand up and defend it. You shouldn’t coward in a corner.
To add to Justice Scalia’s comments, America is no place for cowards. We are the Home of the Brave and not the Home of the Chickens.
One final thought, I know on this blog, you have to have a Blogger or Google Account to not post Anonymous, but nothing says you can’t put your name in your post.
If you can’t say it to my face, you shouldn’t say it behind my back.
Man up, NOM!

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1 Comment

  1. Well said. These baseless fears of "harassment" are just so much smoke and mirrors. As one whose criticism of anti-gay Maine donors was cited in NOM v. McKee (ooooh! I called them "bigots"! how skeeery!), and as one who regularly receives threats and admonitions via email and otherwise (I created and maintain the Base8 searchable database of anti-gay donors), I just have to shake my head at their delusional hysteria: They've convinced themselves there is a Vast Queer Conspiracy (of which I am some sort of Imperial Wizard) to hunt them down and wreak revenge, no doubt violently — when the truth is, I want to know exactly who my self-appointed enemies are, and where they work, so I can stay as far away from them as possible — and, of course, avoid doing business with them (I refuse to fund my own oppression any further).

    Of course, their "fears" are just projection. Of course, not all anti-gays would kill us if they could, but there are far too many who would — and those who wouldn't are so steeped in their own bizarre culture of violence and "godly" war imagery, it's easy to see why they would assume everyone views every battle as a very bloody battle to the death. Literally.

    Yet, as I often note, I've never heard of gay gangs roaming the streets at night, looking for Christians to bash — but I can't begin to count the number of LGBTs beaten and murdered by "good," "god-fearing" "Christians." And those who do not beat and murder us with sticks and knives and guns are still beating us and killing us, only more slowly and torturously.

    Meanwhile, back in Reality Land, you don't see LGBTs attempting to strip anti-gays of their legal right to be horses' asses…

    Would that we could.

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