Politics As Usual?

521539_10200514148232766_995611965_nI share these thoughts in the spirit of respectful debate with those who may believe that this image is symbolic of politics-as-usual (and is there really any other kind of politics?).

I don’t feel sucked into anything.

I don’t see gay marriage as anti-activist, or feel any less radical by wanting my future wife to be able to sign off on a DNR order or be covered by my health insurance.

I don’t think wanting to name and celebrate our commitment to each other with friends and family as our witnesses makes me a mindless consumer numbed by heteronormative or “boys club” myths and values. I opted out of “normal” when I came out, and supporting legal equality is in no way the same as going back into the closet.

I believe that getting married IS a radical act of faith, and that living consciously is activism itself.

Is marriage the only way? No. Is it always a good idea? No. I have no illusions that divorce is divorce–and gay, straight, or sideways, it is never fun.

Marriage is not the only worthy form of family or relationship, and it should not be legally and economically privileged above all others. A majority of people – whatever their sexual and gender identities – do not live in traditional nuclear families. They stand to gain from alternative forms of household recognition beyond one-size-fits-all marriage.

I happen to agree with this statement, taken from BeyondMarriage.org. I also believe that for better or for worse, there is some degree of working within existing structures as movement TOWARDS bigger change.

Is our system inherently flawed and narrow? Yes. Does that mean working within it is any less subversive and necessary? Not in my book.

I believe that cynicism is an obstruction to progress. And that progress on one front is a step towards expanding our collection notions of “what makes a family.” This is not an either-or debate; in fact, inclusivity is very much to the point, and is rarely achieved, as we well know, in one fell swoop.

Supporting LGBT marriage equality, wanting ALL couples and families and unions to be treated equally under federal law, does not mean I am “acting straight” or selling out. It means I am speaking out, acting up, and finally, not acting at all. We need a big tent here, people.

Finally, I believe in the Russian phrase I learned on a high-school exchange program: Kаждому своё. To each his (or her) own–her own choices, her own path, her own heart. FOR ALL.

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