20 August 2010

Sometimes, the world just surprises you...

So, there in this buzz on the Internet about this photo of two young, presumably gay men riding the MARTA in Atlanta.  The person who posted the photo of two urban men of color in a rather tender position (see the pic in the link) and posted it online with the caption "I don't give a fuck how sleepy you are" didn't do his intended cause any favors.  The VAST majority of the comments I have read so far basically called him a homophobic idiot, and many gave great validation to the (presumed) couple for being comfortable and brave enough to be out  and express their love in such a tender, nonthreatening way.

It seems the world is changing a bit faster than some people are ready for.  It reminds me of a different generation of United States citizens, under a different President.  When Lyndon Baines Johnson called in the National Guard to force integration in Southern Schools, many people were not ready to see persons of African decent and persons of European decent attend schools together.  For another decade or so, interracial marriage was illegal in many states, particularly in the South.  Now, we have a President in the White House who is the son of a Kenyan father and an Irish American mother.  This was unthinkable just a few decades ago, and even just one decade ago, another man of African decent chose not to seek the Presidency because of the very real possibility of his assassination.

In my lifetime, I have already seen my people come to the forefront of American politics, and be used as a divisive 'issue' between the Left and Right.  Much the same way the parties used race in the 1950's and 1960's.  It took a President from Texas to force the issue, despite what I am sure was a huge backlash from home.  Maybe the President that is sitting in the White House today will be equally as brave, and will force another issue of Civil Rights down the throats of a Nation not quite ready to look their fellow citizens in the eye and accept them as equals...

Back to the photo (and off my soapbox momentarily,) I am so proud to be a member of the race called human today.  The comments left by so many on this photo were loving, and kind, and affirming.  These comments definitely outnumber those which were condemning and angry and hateful.  I can not be sure, as I was not there 2000 years ago, but these are the seeds I think great teachers like Jesus and Mohammed were trying to sow.  The seeds of a truly united and loving humanity, regardless of race, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender orientation, or anything else that makes each of us unique and beautiful.  Today, I think they would both be proud...I know I am.

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