I was doing some shopping yesterday, at Target in Omaha, with my brother. When we got to the checkout lane, as usual, I did a quick glance at the headlines and photos on the magazines. I don’t actually buy them, I have no real interest in celebrity gossip. If I don’t hear about it through legitimate, responsible news venues, I ignore it.
One cover made me stop and take a long look and it made me smile. And it was a story that had been covered by CNN, MSNBC, and pretty much anywhere there was a radio or television, so I knew it was a legit.
Anyway, it was this week’s US Weekly. The headline: “Elton’s Baby: At home with Elton John, David Furnish and baby Zachary”
Here is the cover:
My question is: What’s wrong with that photo? What about it is even the least bit offensive?
And yet, Harps Supermarket in Mountain View, Arkansas, chose to do this:
Maybe I’m a bit naive, but I honestly thought we were further along than this in our society,
What exactly is the point of this? What are they protecting the young shoppers from? Pornography… No. Graphic Violence… No. Profanity… No.
They are protecting them from… A PHOTO OF A FAMILY!
Now, unless you were living under a rock at the time, Elton and David were married in a civil ceremony on December 21, 2005, and, by all reports it has been a very happy marriage. They love each other, they have chosen to share the rest of their lives and now they have chosen to have a child to share their love and lives with… isn’t that something that married couples do if they choose? Have children?
I look at that photo and I see two happy fathers with their infant son, who, by the way is absolutely adorable.
The people at Harps saw something to be ashamed of, disgusted by, frightened of, something to be hidden… Any or all of the above? I don’t know. But, why?
Do they still not understand that sexuality is not a choice? That marriage should be the right of every man and woman and not just a privilege afforded only to heterosexuals? That what constitutes a family is not genders of the individual members but the love that is shared between them.
I pray that should God bless me with another chance at love in my life that, no matter who I end up with, my family and friends will be happy for me and accepting of whoever my partner may be. Because, with me, it could go either way.
This isn’t the way I originally intended to do this, but I just feel so strongly about all of this that I’m going to lay it all out for everyone to see why I do feel the way I do.
I know a lot of my family and friends will probably be shocked, though, I think, if they really thought about it, they wouldn’t be. I also know I run the risk of being “disowned” by a few. If that happens, it’s their choice and their loss.
You see, I knew when I was a kid that I was different. That I liked girls just as much as I liked boys. But I was also taught at a pretty early age that it was a sin and that the Bible said that anyone who behaved that way should be put to death. Scared the wits out of me so much that for most of my life, other than a girlfriend I had in junior high and high school that was kept secret, I hid and tried to deny how I felt about women. I think that has quite a bit to do with my struggles with depression and bipolar disorder. Not the only reason, mind you, but one of the biggies.
So now, no more hiding… no more denying… no more pretending. I’m going to say this as plainly as I can, I am also going to say it proudly. No more hanging my head in shame about anything in my life. I have gone before God and have prayed and even begged for him to change me and, guess what? Nothing has changed.
After years of struggling with it all, it took one simple sentence from an Oprah Winfrey interview that made me finally come to terms and accept myself for who I am, who I was born to be. It was Chely Wright who put it so simply, yet so powerfully,,, “God doesn’t make mistakes”. You see, God made me the way I am. God doesn’t make mistakes. I am not wrong to feel the way I do and I am certainly not a mistake
Here it is: I’m Bisexual. You can accept it or you can walk away. I’ve wasted too many years of my life hiding and I have spent to much of my energy on anger and self-hate and I just am not going to do it anymore.
Now you know why I am such a strong supporter of Gay and Lesbian Rights and speak up about the need to legalize same-sex marriages. Because someday I may be in a relationship with someone I want to marry and spend the rest of my life with and I want to be able to regardless of whether that person is male or female,
Marriage is everyone’s right… not a heterosexual privilege!
And it certainly not anything that needs to be kept away from the eyes of children!