Your Homophobia Isn't A 'Difference Of Opinion,' It's Hate

Your Homophobia Isn't A 'Difference Of Opinion,' It's Hate

Don't tell me, a gay man, just to accept that some people want me dead.

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Sometimes, I sit and think about the fact that gay marriage was legalized in all fifty states for only four years.

Four years.

Four years ago, before this law was put into place, gay and lesbian couples could get married in only a small number of states. In other ones, they could get a legal document stating that they were "life partners" but that, of course, wasn't recognized by most employers and insurance companies. Four years ago, when gay marriage was finally recognized in all fifty states, the LGBT+ community rejoiced; but, this happiness was short lived.

People began coming out of the woodwork, claiming that this the downfall of the United States. They became angry, enraged, at the fact that a minority that has been long discriminated against was getting some basic human rights. There was even the infamous Kim Davis, a government employee, who refused to issue a marriage license to a gay couple. She claimed religious discrimination and became somewhat of a martyr for the homophobic community, seeing the gay couple and the rest of the LGBT+ community as her oppressors. Thankfully, she lost her case and had to pay $225,000 in legal fees for the gay couple she discriminated against.

This little story brings me to my larger point: using terms like "religious freedom" and "difference of opinion" to make one's homophobia seem less severe.

People like to think that just because the gays got the right to marry, it means that they're protected from things like homophobia. They think that because the AIDS crisis is over, the gays are a happy and healthy bunch who have no fears what so ever. Which, in my humble opinion, is a load of absolute garbage.

LGBT youths are thrown out of their homes by their parents for being gay, lesbian, and transgender. 40% of the 1.6 million homeless youth in America identify themselves as a part of the LGBT community, which is absolutely alarming. It's no easier for LGBT adults either. We live in fear of having our rights taken away or infringed upon at any moment. We live in fear of being harassed or assaulted if we hold hands or are affectionate with our partners in public. We're afraid that we'll have a repeat of the Pulse nightclub shooting, turning out safe spaces into a space of terror.

Please, realize for once in your life that homophobia isn't simply a different opinion, it's straight up discrimination. Whenever I hear people say "I don't hate the gays! I just hate the sin!" still reads as "I hate gay people but I'm just saying this to make myself seem more tolerant than I really am." This also applies to straight women who claim to love gay men, but, allow their relatives, husbands, and boyfriends to toxic homophobic dribble whenever they feel like. If you were truly a dedicated ally, you would openly and angrily condemn their behavior and refuse to associate with them. But when you don't, and sit there and smile and say "well, that's just their opinion" you have become complacent in their hatred and discrimination towards the gay community.

Alright, so y'all can get mad at me, a gay man who's telling you truth of what it's like to be gay, or you can step back and reassess your own internalized homophobia and try and make a change in your life.

It'd be a lot cooler if you did.

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I Am A Female And I Am So Over Feminists

I believe that I am a strong woman, but I also believe in a strong man.
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Beliefs are beliefs, and everyone is entitled to their opinion. I'm all about girl power, but in today's world, it's getting shoved down our throats. Relax feminists, we're OK.

My inspiration actually came from a man (God forbid, a man has ideas these days). One afternoon my boyfriend was telling me about a discussion his class had regarding female sports and how TV stations air fewer female competitions than that of males. In a room where he and his other male classmate were completely outnumbered, he didn't have much say in the discussion.

Apparently, it was getting pretty heated in the room, and the women in the class were going on and on about how society is unfair to women in this aspect and that respect for the female population is shrinking relative to the male population.

If we're being frank here, it's a load of bull.

SEE ALSO: To The Women Who Hate Feminism

First of all, this is the 21st century. Women have never been more respected. Women have more rights in the United States than ever before. As far as sports go, TV stations are going to air the sports that get the most ratings. On a realistic level, how many women are turning on Sports Center in the middle of the day? Not enough for TV stations to make money. It's a business, not a boycott against female athletics.

Whatever happened to chivalry? Why is it so “old fashioned" to allow a man to do the dirty work or pay for meals? Feminists claim that this is a sign of disrespect, yet when a man offers to pick up the check or help fix a flat tire (aka being a gentleman), they become offended. It seems like a bit of a double standard to me. There is a distinct divide between both the mental and physical makeup of a male and female body. There is a reason for this. We are not equals. The male is made of more muscle mass, and the woman has a more efficient brain (I mean, I think that's pretty freaking awesome).

The male body is meant to endure more physical while the female is more delicate. So, quite frankly, at a certain point in life, there need to be restrictions on integrating the two. For example, during that same class discussion that I mentioned before, one of the young ladies in the room complained about how the NFL doesn't have female athletes. I mean, really? Can you imagine being tackled by a 220-pound linebacker? Of course not. Our bodies are different. It's not “inequality," it's just science.

And while I can understand the concern in regard to money and women making statistically less than men do, let's consider some historical facts. If we think about it, women branching out into the workforce is still relatively new in terms of history. Up until about the '80s or so, many women didn't work as much as they do now (no disrespect to the women that did work to provide for themselves and their families — you go ladies!). We are still climbing the charts in 2016.

Though there is still considered to be a glass ceiling for the working female, it's being shattered by the perseverance and strong mentality of women everywhere. So, let's stop blaming men and society for how we continue to “struggle" and praise the female gender for working hard to make a mark in today's workforce. We're doing a kick-ass job, let's stop the complaining.

I consider myself to be a very strong and independent female. But that doesn't mean that I feel the need to put down the opposite gender for every problem I endure. Not everything is a man's fault. Let's be realistic ladies, just as much as they are boneheads from time to time, we have the tendency to be a real pain in the tush.

It's a lot of give and take. We don't have to pretend we don't need our men every once in a while. It's OK to be vulnerable. Men and women are meant to complement one another — not to be equal or to over-power. The genders are meant to balance each other out. There's nothing wrong with it.

I am all for being a proud woman and having confidence in what I say and do. I believe in myself as a powerful female and human being. However, I don't believe that being a female entitles me to put down men and claim to be the “dominant" gender. There is no “dominant" gender. There's just men and women. Women and men. We coincide with each other, that's that.

Time to embrace it.

Cover Image Credit: chrisjohnbeckett / Flickr

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'Grey's Anatomy' Taught Me Just How Important Gay Rights Are

This episode opened my eyes and heart.

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Attending a Catholic high school made it very clear in my mind that LGBTQ individuals did not fit in with society. I watched as our principle refused to allow students to invite their same-sex partners to dances. I remember our administration fighting against letting a boy on our dance team because they thought it would ruin the reputation of being a Catholic school. The way they were treated in front of me every day became the way I thought the world should treat them too. But I couldn't have been more wrong.

In season seven, episode 12 of "Grey's Anatomy," Meredith Grey encounters a patient who was trampled by horses after his partner set up a carriage ride to take them to sign their domestic partnership papers. His partner explains to Meredith that he had just wanted the day to be special because straight people get to have the most special day of their lives on their wedding day. They get the flowers, the ceremony, the reception, the gifts. At this point in time, all members of the LGBTQ got was their signature on a piece of paper.

I remember something inside of me being moved at the thought of someone simply being in love and not being able to celebrate it because people thought it was "weird" or "unnatural." I put myself in the reverse situation and thought about how much it would break my heart if society did not accept the fact that I want to marry my wonderful boyfriend some day. I cried during the scene in the show because even though it was acting, I could see just how important these two people were to each other and all of the unnecessary barriers they had to cross just to prove that their love was the same as anyone else's.

Maybe this moment was extremely late in my life to have the realization of how hard it must be for LGBTQ people to find happiness in our society, but I am glad I had that realization at all.

Certain religions crucify the LGBTQ community, saying they will go to hell for sexuality because it is a sin. Personally, I have a hard time believing that God could condemn anyone for showing another human being unconditional love.

It scares me how poisonous our society can be at times. 10 years ago, if you asked me how I felt about people in the LGBTQ community, I would probably (wrongfully) say that they freaked me out. These days, while you won't necessarily see me at a Pride parade, you will see me hyping up and supporting my awesome gay best friend to go after his crush. You will see me taking girls hitting on me as a compliment rather than something weird. You will see me openly supporting gay rights because it is the right things to do, human to human.

The saying "love is love" is so simple, yet so incredibly true.

I can't help how much I love my boyfriend and I would never in a million years expect someone to tell me to stop. Who are we to tell members of the LGBTQ community to stay in some box society and religion have built? We aren't. Love is love and you can never and will never be able to put rules and restrictions on a feeling.

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