Thursday, June 27, 2013

Dear Cousin

Dear “Cousin”,

When we were kids, you and I would walk behind Pa and Granny’s to the chicken coop. The dirt on that hillside was moist, and we would sit for hours sifting through it in search of worms. We were always hoping Dad would take us fishing. 

When it would get too hot, we would rejoin the girls in the front yard and swim circles in a kiddy pool not built for four. In the evenings when they pulled out the stereo and all the adults sat on the front porch and gossiped, you and I would run off to catch lighting bugs by the shed. We were inseparable. You were my buddy. My Blake. 

When I came out, you never really said anything. You met many of my girlfriends, hung out with us, joked with us, and we all went places together. You often told me how attractive they were. To my face, you were fine with my sexuality. 

However today… the day after the biggest day in LGBT history, you have spoken out against me, my heart, my humanity, and “my kind”, a term that you used to represent all “queers and lesbians”. Thank you for clarifying. 

“Ok so I am completely UN happy with gay marriage being legal in some states, as the bible says be fruitful and multiply and two people of the same sex cant multiply. If god wanted the same sex to be together then he would made everybody the same gender but did he no he didnt and what kind of example is this going to set for future generations I mean children cant ever pray at school w/o getting in trouble. What kind of president would allow this kind of stuff Obama would he is the WORST president ever in Americas history he needs to be impeached ASAP before America is left with absolutely nothing.”

First, unhappy is one word. You’re unhappy with gay marriage being legal in some states… Does that mean you’re ok with it being legal in others? Also, you mentioned that the bible says to “Be fruitful and multiply.” Without looking it up, can you please tell me what verse that is? In fact, can you tell me ANY verse off the top of your head? The truth is… you don’t go to church. You’ve never been religious. Name ONE TIME when you we’re in school that you were UPSET that you didn’t have time to pray. Seriously. One time. 

Going back to the “being fruitful thing”, does that mean women who can’t get pregnant, or men who are sterile shouldn’t be able to get married? What about the elderly? Pa can no longer have kids. If he chose to remarry, should he be allowed? Does that mean also that everyone should have kids before they’re married so we can ensure they can reproduce? I thought having a baby out of wedlock was against your religion… 

Also, please tell me what your problem with Obama is? What is one problem you see with his current term as president. I do expect a detailed answer with examples of policies and regulations, because the truth is… you don’t know anything about politics. The only reason you don’t like him is because he’s black. I’m not going to say his presidency has been flawless, but if you’re going to speak out about him… have a reason that isn’t racist. 

Finally, you told me to “keep that nasty shit out here with me, and not to bring it to Tennessee.” Did you forget that I was raised on the same soil you were, and that I was gay in Tennessee, before I was ever in California? Tennessee is where my heart is. I grew up there… You are not the keeper of the states, and I will be gay wherever I damn well please. LEGALLY. 

From this point forward, whenever another state legalizes gay marriage, I will toast to you and your ignorance. Just so you know, that’s a lot of toasts… Because whether you like it or not, most people aren’t homophobic. Gay Marriage will be legal nationwide very soon, and you will sit there rambling your nonsense unheard.

You told me that if I had a problem with your opinion that I should delete you. Which, I’m going to do… but before that happens I would like to remind you that you had NO PROBLEM wearing my gay clothes. Whenever I outgrew my t-shirts, and hats, and jeans, and jackets… which cousin wore them? My ignorant straight homophobic cousin wore them. Every day. In fact they were the nicest clothes you had.

I have always been good to you. I have always made it a point to stand up for you, and I even tried to get you to go to college and then live with me until you found a job in California, but it’s probably better you didn’t. There are a lot of queers out here. 

I hope that one day you do embrace God. You would see that his word preaches love, hope and faith. Not hate, belittlement, and discrimination. 

With Love,

Your Lesbian Cousin

1 comment:

  1. Dear Tennessee,

    There are many things that I could say right now. I could speak to the misuse of a verse. I could scream about the ignorance. I could comfort your hurt. I could, well, create quite a stir but I want to do something different. I want to encourage who you are and where you are going. I want to say keep fighting for the love of all people.

    Keep writing encouraging hope and grace.
    Keep calling people higher.
    Keep pouring your whole heart into things you believe in.

    Because honestly this letter and the reality you had to write it sucks. It sucks that people blaze such trails of ignorance and bigotry. It sucks that people use social media to create hate. It sucks that people just can’t let love live (oooo snap that’s a clothing company) but we can fight it. We can fight it when we choose to create something beautiful in the midst of the mess. And that’s what you do... as a leader, as an artist, as a dreamer. Keep being you. And I will join you as we toast to those who have made all of us stronger.