Here in Oregon there are many people working head to get Marriage Equality on the ballot – and passed – this year. Two years ago we were excited to see marriage equality pass in Washington, where Brother-Bug’s god-mommies live. I believe we live in a time where this issue will be wrapped up and equal marriage rights will be legalized before my kids are deciding if and who to marry.
But they are learning about this fight for equality now. And I believe it is an important part of our life lessons and homeschooling.
They are still so young and they don’t really understand that things aren’t equal and just. I know it doesn’t make sense to them that one set of god parents can get married and one set can’t.
But I am showing them, by volunteering to collect signatures and other work for the marriage equality campaign, that justice and equality make a difference. That we must all contribute to that difference.
Here’s a reason we are teaching marriage equality…
It might not have occurred to them that our sets of god parents aren’t equal. They might have gone to a wedding of our queer friends without realizing that it wasn’t a just, equal, and legal wedding. They’re little. But just as I think it is essential that they spend some energy learning about the civil rights movement and Dr. King and how people have reached so high for the idea of equality – even if they are little and it doesn’t make sense yet – I think we also need to be clear that we aren’t done yet. The commitment to and struggle for equal rights is an ongoing one. And we participate in it because we believe everyone should be treated with justice and from a place of equal rights.
I might have a kid who grows up to be an LGBTQ person. I don’t know that yet and likely won’t for many years. But I know that the kids are learning about people all the time, and more importantly how people are perceived and treated by out culture. Even though our circles are rich with diversity and they are friends with people of all stripes… Well eventually they are going to notice the disparity between our circles and cultural norms. The miniscule number of queer characters in their books and movies. Off hand comments (“that’s so gay” for example) that degrade another individual’s dignity. These things will tell them in subtle ways that being on that LGBTQ party list is somehow wrong. And I hope that they also remember their parents telling them that we are going out signature gathering as a family because everyone deserves equal rights. I hope that they will remember that I fought for LGBTQ equality – and always will. And that they fought for it too.
One more reason…
There were kids who were dragged to the March on Washington because someone knew they should be there. It was history in the making. And what becomes history so quickly also becomes our children’s future. They should be there in these historical moments. Because someday a small child learning about the work done for equality will come across stories about how we made marriage legal for everyone. And they will ask an adult Brother-Bug or Sister-Bug about it. And they can say “yeah…I was there. I helped…”
Here’s to equal rights. For everyone.
You don’t have to agree with any of this. I know that marriage equality is a controversial issue. I respect your right to your opinion. Please keep your comments kind and peacemaking. Mean spirited comments will be deleted.