I’m really not screwing him up!


Last week I was watching the morning news and heard  that Indiana Governor, Mike Pence, had signed a Religious Freedom Restoration Law.  Later that day, B & I were running errands and I could not stop thinking about that law so I had to start talking about it.  You know when you get a thought or song or worry in your head and you just need to voice it, let it out, so you’re no longer screaming it in your head?  That was me.

So I told B about the law and what it means.  I told him why some people support it and why others do not.  And I reiterated to him our view on the whole issue of denying rights to gays (he’s heard it many, many times, poor kid!).  But this time I went further and this is what I told him:

“For some reason, many people who are against gay marriage only focus on gays having sex.  When they think of a gay couple, they think of them having sex and they think it is wrong.  I don’t understand why they go there!  When they think of a heterosexual couple, they don’t usually picture them having sex.  And you know what?  There are plenty of heterosexual couples out there that actually enjoy having sex in the same way that gay couples do!  Yet no one is trying to stop them from getting married.  They’re just stuck on the sexual act of marriage instead of focusing on all the other benefits of marriage, like:

  • “When you are legally married you can file your taxes together and pay less federal and state income taxes.
  • If one of you is not working, you can receive health insurance benefits from your spouse’s employer.
  • You both can legally adopt a child together, instead of just one of you adopting a child.
  • If your spouse is in a serious car accident and ends up in the ICU or CCU or WhateverCU, you can visit them, hold their hand during that scary time, hear what the doctors say is wrong with your spouse and make medical decisions for your injured spouse.

“Let’s say there is a gay woman, Jane, who came out to her parents at the age of 18 and her parents cut her out of their lives.  Maybe they believe being gay is a choice and demanded she choose to be straight or maybe they believe she is an abomination and don’t want to have anything to do with her.  For whatever reason, they disowned her, and they don’t see each other anymore.  By the time Jane is 30, she is in a loving, committed relationship with Suzy, but they do not get married because gay marriage is not legal in their state.  A few years later, they decide to start a family and Jane gets pregnant.  After their baby is born, Jane & Suzy draw up wills, including living wills, and setup a college fund for their son.  Years go by, and one morning while Suzy is taking their 12 yr old son to school, Jane is in a major car accident on the way to work.  Suzy rushes to the ICU only to find she cannot get in to see her wife because she is not “family”.  The doctor cannot even discuss Jane’s condition with Suzy and asks her who Jane’s next of kin is.

“Jane’s parents arrive at the hospital, after not seeing nor communicating with their daughter for 25 years.  They do not share with Suzy that Jane is brain dead; they merely authorize the doctors to turn off her life support and have the body sent to a funeral home of their choosing.  If they had only talked to Suzy, they would have found out that Jane wanted to donate her organs.  As they pass through the main waiting room on their way out of the hospital, Jane’s parents see a woman and a boy, who looks just like their Jane, crying.  They discover they have a grandchild.  They file for custody of their grandson the next day.  Suzy has now lost her wife and her son.  Their son has lost one of his parents and must live with complete strangers unless/until Suzy can fight and win custody of her son.

“And none of this is thought of nor considered by people who want to prevent equal rights for gays!  All they focus on is their belief that gay sex is a sin!”

By this time, we’re sitting in the parking lot of a grocery store with the car off, because I had to finish my “rant” before getting out.  I look at B’s face and feel bad.  “I’m so sorry for getting up on my soapbox, again!  You poor thing, you’ve been a hostage in this car.  Let’s go.”

I get out of the car, open the back door and collect my grocery bags.  When I turn around, B is standing right there.  He put his right hand on my left shoulder and said, “Mom?  Let’s not ever get off our soapboxes about important issues like this.  OK?”

Tears came to my eyes.  I’m really not screwing him up!  We’re raising a compassionate, strong man who, along with others of his generation, will change this country, this world, for the better by never getting off his soapbox.

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