Gay Rights are Civil Rights
And It's Time for black people to realize that
So, I saw a video the other day where this black preacher was accusing gays of “hijacking the Civil Rights”. Hmmm, it struck me as funny that you can hijack something that belongs to everyone. But here is what the Right Rev. Keith Ratliff Sr., president of the Iowa-Nebraska chapter of the NAACP, had to say, “Deviant behavior is not the same as being denied your right to vote,” and calling any parallel between the African-American civil rights movement and the gay civil rights movement an “insult.”
Civil Rights, which are defined by Webster’s as being “the nonpolitical rights of a citizen; especially: the rights of personal liberty guaranteed to United States citizens by the 13th and 14th amendments to the Constitution and by acts of Congress.” The “rights of personal liberty”, not to mention those inalienable rights guaranteed by the Bill of Rights do not belong to one group of humans in this country, or for that matter on this planet.
They are guaranteed because we are all humans. It seems that many African-American evangelicals seem to thing that gay people are somehow sexual deviants. I admit gay male sex would not be my cup of tea, however, I am not sure how two consenting adults doing what they think is right is deviant, However, the question that needs to be asked is do gays, who are humans, have the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?
Why is it that the military seems to understand this better than most ordinary Americans? Remember Executive Order 9981, it is the order given by President Harry Truman on July 26, 1948 that permanently desegregated the military. For those of you counting that is six years before Brown v. Board of Education and a full 12 before my grandmother took me to that ‘All White’ water fountain in Woodville, TX and took a drink. Now, the United States military has begun accepting gay applicants and training its soldiers to accept gay recruits as, the horror, humans!
I know, I am going to be accused of being gay again. Good luck proving that one. However, I am angry at the fact that African Americans of my generation and those older who remember being treated as less than humans cannot empathize with those who are now in the same struggle.
You see I remember buying shoes at the back of the store and having to go to back of the restaurant where my Aunt work so that she could give me my food. I remember a KKK raid at our shotgun shack one night because they believed my guardian’s husband had looked at a white woman. I remember losing one of my best friends because her father thought she and I was dating and he told her she could not see me anymore. We still speak to this day.
Gay Rights are civil rights and I am tired of intelligent African Americans not speaking up for them as such. It is time to let gay people drink from the fountain of freedom.