Sunday, October 26, 2014

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Evan Wolfson, You’re My Hero

Posted by amy On April - 10 - 2009

Even Wolfson, Executive Director of Freedom to Marry and aughor of Why Marriage Matters (great book if you haven’t read it), continues to impress me with his view of this movement as well as his views of those who oppose us.

He wrote an article for the Huffington Post today entitled Winning the Freedom to Marry? Cue the Attack on the Gays.  His writing always seem to fire me up, consistently reminding me of the trite bumper sticker “if you’re not angry, then you’re not paying attention.”  Anger is something that can either defeat us, or it can lead to our victory – if used correctly.  Read his post and channel your anger toward positive actions.  His post gives all of the information necessary to startup important conversations about equality.  Let that anger you feel fuel the passion to have these conversations.

Check out the bullet points in the post if you don’t have time to read it all.  The next time you hear someone say “they’re teaching homosexuality in the schools” or one of those arguments against marriage and equal rights of LGBTQ citizens, remember his words and you will know how to educate that person about what is actually happening.  For instance, the argument that a NJ church was forced to accept gay people sounds strong, but consider the details.  The church was opperating a public facility that had multiple tax breaks from the government.  As a government funded facility, it has to abide by the same laws as all other government funded businesses.  These rules include an inability to discriminate against someone based on race, religion, ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation.

I am a firm believer that few people truly hate (and you can feel free to disagree with me on that).  Instead, I feel that many people just do not understand, maybe choose to not understand, or firmly believe one side and have no reason to trust the explanations of another.  The only way to end this is to reach out and educate… but you have to reach out, because few people are going to go out of their way to learn the other side of the story.  This is true of ALL people regardless of sexual orientation.  We remain safest when preaching to the choir and vis versa.  So, reach out… infiltrate.  We can end discrimination in 3 easy steps:

  1. INFILTRATE – initiate the conversation, seek out the conversation, approach it with respect and you will recieve respect if they are willing to listen.
  2. EDUCATE – Tell them personal stories, use your knowledge of history, fact, and the present state to help them see the other side.  Respect their beliefs, because beliefs are something that few people will ever change.  What’s important is that their beliefs do not hurt you.  We must all coexist, and respect is the first step toward this
  3. END HATE

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