Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

Gay Rights in America

By , Dallas, TX
Growing up in a religious home such as mine, with a strong closed-minded Christian mother and a strong Catholic father, it wasn’t considered acceptable to be “different”- whether it was to be open-minded on hot topics of today, have opposing viewpoints to those that my brothers and I were raised with, or even being a homosexual. When my brother confessed to me that he was gay, I was felt sadness, not because of his sexual orientation, but because of the embarrassment that he felt. I still remember telling him that even though of the way that our parents have raised us, I have my own personal beliefs, and it is my belief that homosexuals are no different from anyone else, and therefore deserve the same and equal rights as everyone else.

Going to Sunday school is difficult, since obviously my points of view don’t really go hand in hand with what the pastor preaches. Occasionally we will have classes where we discuss homosexuality, and how Christians-collectively- should be against it because it goes against the teachings of the Bible. I always ask why that is, and the reply is always the same: “homosexuals are just not beneficial to society; they bring no benefit to society.” It puzzles me not only the nonsense of it, but also the fact that that’s the opinion shared by the majority of the counterparty, who argue against gay rights, using the Bible as a weapon of choice. Time after time, the same words have been engraved to my head: “every sinner is forgiven for their sins, once repenting.” With that said, it makes me wonder, what sin have the gays done to receive such harshness and denying of acceptance from society? Is it a sin to not fancy another individual of the opposite sex as everyone else? Is it a sin to be different? We have all heard the line from our parents, or elders, “God loves you for who you are.” Then wouldn’t that mean that God will love his children no matter if they are straight or gay? I don’t even know which is worse: considering being gay a sin or considering it a mental disorder-as it was from 1952 to 1973?

Even though there are supporters of gay rights who put up a strong fight, it does not eliminate the fact that there are victims of sexual orientation discrimination who have to suffer on a daily basis. Statistics show that the majority of teenagers who contemplate committing suicide are gays or lesbians because they’re not being accepted by their family, friends, or society in general. Although my brother might not be a young, insecure, and suicidal teenager, it does not discard the reality that he too feels the same way-rejected. But the one thing that I admired from him the most is that he doesn’t let that get in his way from being happy as he is. And it’s not only him who behaves in the same way, but several other gays/lesbians as well.
As seen throughout American history, there have been reoccurring fights of individuals wanting to rise up and gain equal rights that everyone else had. Both racial and gender discrimination have been proven wrong, and soon, so will sexual orientation discrimination. The Declaration of Independence states that a man has unalienable rights that no one can take away: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Even if it means that individuals who are homosexuals pursue happiness by seeking equal rights as everyone else, and sharing their life with a partner of the same sex. Now, I’m not trying to preach to my audience, but simply to express my personal belief, which is the purpose of this speech.



Join the Discussion


This article has 4 comments. Post your own!

blackveilbrideschickies said...
Dec. 3, 2011 at 7:18 pm:
this is a very good article:)
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
kary said...
Jun. 14, 2010 at 12:25 am:
Very touching.  It's often very difficult to have different ideas and thoughts than what your elders always told you, especially when it comes to religion (and that goes out to both your brother AND you).

All my love and support.
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
ayesha1208 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 11, 2010 at 11:59 pm:
Epic. Speaks from the heart. I love the emotion seeping from the article. The words get you, because it's a harsh truth.
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Lilly-Ann said...
Jun. 11, 2010 at 10:19 pm:

I wrote this :D

I don't know why it says from anonymous

 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Site Feedback