Well, family, as if one needed any further proof of the outright, blatant and vitriolic hatred and dismissal of GLBTI people and our relationships, here it is.
Following the death of Gerry Studds recently, his husband, Dean Hara, will not receive any portion of Mr. Studds' pension benefit. The pair had been partnered for fifteen years and married for two. If Hara was female he would have been entitled to and received about half of the nearly $115,000.00 pension.
Even as a somewhat controversial member of congress in his heyday, Studds was an effective and respected political figure and the first congressman to be openly gay. The spouses of other members of the congressional body would be irrefutably and fully entitled to the benefits of their deceased spouse. How dare this government, whether it favors same-sex couples, GLBTI people or not---How dare they so heartlessly and coldly permit this insult upon a bereaved human being.
How dare this nation talk about human and civil rights to any other nation on earth when it boldy demonstrates its own failings in that regard. I am outraged but obviously not surprised.
It is glaringly clear that this country's immaturity and rancor regarding GLBTI life and people is so great that there is absolutely zero regard for the inexcusable lack of compassion and fairness.
I would remind the haters that "You don't have to like us. You don't have to "approve" of our life choices. It is not for you to approve. However, you must respect other human beings." It is unconscionable that there isn't a tremendous hue and cry of outrage at this newest 'slap in the face' to the GLBTI family and the human family.
There is no excuse. There is no justification. There is no possible way that this inequality can be allowed to drop off the radar.
There was a time in this nation when I actually believed that one could shout loudly enough, and with right on one's side, to shake the rafters and effect change. I shudder to think that, now, this nation WILL turn its back on this disgusting and obvious travesty. I imagine that it will do nothing.
I once actually heard someone say to another with complete, insane candor: "I could slit your throat, step over the body, make a sandwich and not think about it for another moment." It appears to me that that is precisely what our leaders are more than capable of doing and have done for centuries.
The treatment of gays and lesbians in this country, while cloaked in more general protections- reluctantly given- reeks of the horrible treatment of women in early America. Unflappably willing to be redundant---it stinks of the treatment of those forced into Japanese internment camps, slavery, anti-miscegenation laws, and the many other documented and moronic incidents that we have dropped upon each other throughout our history. One common thread therein, is the fact that it was felt by the 'majority' that these situations were commonly recognized as acceptable. Therefore, they were permitted, promoted and treated as a matter of course. When will we evolve beyond petty ignorant biases and ignoble, taught predjudices?
Have we learned nothing else?
The gaul of this most recent irreverent and brash acceptance of this and other inequalities in this nation is too much. In the words of Dr. Maya Angelou--- "STOP IT!"
When someone is hurting you tell them to stop it. When you are being mistreated, demand that they stop it. When you are being relegated to the fringes of acceptability by the masses, insist they stop it. When your rights, or the rights of your fellow human beings are being ruthlessly and nonchalantly assailed we must stop it.
Remember the quote by Pastor Martin Niemoeller, Dachau, Germany, 1941:
"In Germany they came first for the Communists and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the Jews and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics and I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me-- and by that time no one was left to speak up."
- Stop interfering in our adult relationships They OBVIOUSLY do not nor cannot effect your relationship unless you choose to allow them to.
- Stop judging and proclaiming mores from your bully pulpit and perch of hypocrisy.
- Stop accepting, inspiring and inciting brutal gay bashing and homophobia which is fed and sanctioned by our leadership.
- Stop your futile attempts to prevent us from marrying the persons we love and know that it may or may not become legal on your watch, but it most assuredly will become.
- Stop your obsession with the romantic lives of same gender loving people in this nation. Aren't there MUCH bigger fish to fry?
- Stop presenting yourselves as the rights and morals wardens of the country and the world---you are not worthy.
- Stop fighting the fact that this is no longer the land of our fathers. It is a new century to which you must adapt and grow.
- Stop oppressing the liberties of others to maintain your rapidly slipping racial, political and theological majority status and delusions of entitlement.
- Stop misleading the lambs for political gain and inspiring bigotry and homophobia.
Mr. Studds Entire Obituary via Boston Globe
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