There has been a great deal of talk on The Impact about Light Up the Night and whether or not we should have 2nd Class Citizen T-shirts. Many feel that they are a 1st Class Citizen with 2nd Class Rights, and I think we should be allowed to express who we are in a way we are comfortable with. When it comes down to it, few will argue that our lack of rights incorporates a feeling of 2nd Class in one way or another. On December 20th, we want to bring light to this lack of rights and want you to feel comfortable expressing the 2nd Class status in your own way.
So many people still don’t understand what we are fighting for. Here’s some examples of the “unequal protections under the law” that the LGBTQ community faces:
- We can not fight for our country without hiding who we are
- In many states (like the recent law in Arkansas) We can not adopt a displaced child in need of a home and safety
- In many states, we can still be fired because we are gay
- My rights in Washington do not stand when I cross the border to Idaho. Therefor, if my partner were to fall ill on a cross country trip, she would be alone in the hospital and I would be powerless.
- Partners cannot share insurance in many states
- In many states, people can be murdered because of their sexuality, but their murderer will not be tried for committing a hate crime
- A loving couple can share a home, but if one passes, that home can be taken from the other in states where shared property rights are not available.
- Finally, a couple can share their lives, share expenses, share good times and bad over many years, but they still cannot gain the equal protections and recognition that two strangers can in one drunken night in Vegas. 2 Strangers + 1 20 minute ceremony + $50 + 10 shots of tequila = Holy Matrimony and 1st Class Protections Under the Law… now who’s crazy?