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And Then There Were Twelve: Minnesota Becomes Twelfth State To Legalize Same-Sex Marriage
With Governor Mark Dayton’s signature on Tuesday, Minnesota officially became the 12th state in the nation — and the second in the midwest — to legalize gay marriage. They’re the third state just this month to do so, joining Delaware and Rhode Island in making marriage equality the law this May. Minnesota’s law takes effect on August 1st.
Some may feel that it is possible to love a person and not accept that he or she is gay. I don’t think so. Loving a person means loving a whole person. We don’t get to pick and choose the parts. Sure, we can hate the fact that someone is always 20 minutes late, or be infuriated about a 15-year-old’s new nose ring. But those aren’t defining characteristics. Our orientation is a fundamental part of who we are. Loving someone but hating the fact that he or she is gay would be like loving someone but hating the fact that he or she has arms or legs.
And what about those parents who do “accept” and “tolerate” their gay children? I guess that’s better than it could be. They’re better parents than those who throw their children out of the house or abuse them for being gay. But does any kid deserve to settle for mere acceptance or tolerance from his or her parents? Words like “accept” and “tolerate” do not indicate good things; in the context of homosexuality, they imply that there is something wrong with being gay that parents have to put up with. That is not a good message.
Every child deserves to be loved for exactly who they are, so I think it’s about time that we change how we talk about our gay children. Let’s abolish the words “accept” and “tolerate” and replace them with “cherish” and “celebrate.” When we cherish and celebrate who our children are, then maybe the scared gay kids in this country will stop worrying about whether their parents will “still” love them and will simply know they are loved unconditionally.
The Asian Pride Project, an intergenerational and multilingual resource for telling the stories of LGBT Asian & Pacific Islanders, recently launched their website. Many of the videos are really great—we loved this one of Elena and her grandmother.
They’re also having a launch party in New York this weekend. It’s free, and you can RSVP here!
“The strain of hiding my sexuality became almost unbearable in March, when the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments for and against same-sex marriage. Less then three miles from my apartment, nine jurists argued about my happiness and my future. Here was my chance to be heard, and I couldn’t say a thing. I didn’t want to answer questions and draw attention to myself. Not while I was still playing.
“I’m glad I’m coming out in 2013 rather than 2003. The climate has shifted; public opinion has shifted. And yet we still have so much farther to go. Everyone is terrified of the unknown, but most of us don’t want to return to a time when minorities were openly discriminated against. I’m impressed with the straight pro athletes who have spoken up so far — Chris Kluwe, Brendon Ayanbadejo.
“The more people who speak out, the better, gay or straight. It starts with President Obama’s mentioning the 1969 Stonewall riots, which launched the gay rights movement, during his second inaugural address. And it extends to the grade-school teacher who encourages her students to accept the things that make us different.
“…I’m glad I can stop hiding and refocus on my 13th NBA season. I’ve been running through the Santa Monica Mountains in a 30-pound vest with Shadow, the German shepherd I got from Mike Miller. In the pros, the older you get, the better shape you must be in. Next season a few more eyeballs are likely to be on me. That only motivates me to work harder.
“Some people insist they’ve never met a gay person. But Three Degrees of Jason Collins dictates that no NBA player can claim that anymore. Pro basketball is a family. And pretty much every family I know has a brother, sister or cousin who’s gay. In the brotherhood of the NBA, I just happen to be the one who’s out.”
I am excited to release a rough version of my children’s storybook on trans*gender and gender neutral kids. Since I am cisgender I would much appreciate some feedback to anything I’m doing wrong. I really want to do this right. I want this to be stepping stone book for children and parents to talk about this.
Everyday Trans* people face violence simply for being who they are. Outing someone can severely compromise their safety. Violence against them occurs on many different levels, every day. You cannot predict how anybody will react to this information, let…