The ruling overturning the Defense of Marriage Act by The Supreme Court of the US this past week was a joyous occasion for many people.
But not for me.
Yes, it is a good thing.
Yes, it is a step in the right direction.
But for me, what it does is make it infinitely more clear how much of a second class citizen I am in my own country.
In a country that is supposedly the ‘land of the free’ and the ‘home of the brave,’ where all people are meant to be equal before the law, I am not.
I can still be fired for my sexual orientation.
I can still be denied housing because of my sexual orientation.
I still can’t stand up in front of my friends and declare my love legally and have it be valid and recognized everywhere.
(Except that this in violation of the interstate commerce clause in the constitution,which makes legally binding contracts drawn up in one state valid in another, but that’s a different story.)
My mother told me I should see it as a victory because things are better than they were when I came out in high school. Yes mom, they are, but each of those ‘victories’ also made me sad, or made me angry, much for the same reason.
When the ruling came down, I felt small. I felt rejected. I felt like I was a small child being told ‘okay so here’s a small concession on our parts now shut up and be quiet, the grown ups are talking now.’
But what frustrated me more, was the incredulity on the faces of the people who were shocked to hear I wasn’t celebrating. It feels to me that most people believe that any progress should be greeted with loud celebration and applause; but for me that just drowns out my anger and tears.
I still loathe the fact that things that many take for granted, has to be ruled on by the highest court in the land.
I’m not any more different than most people.
I go to work.
I come home.
I spend time with my friends.
I pay bills.
I pay taxes.
I am queer, and I share my life with a woman. At this point my country slaps me across the face with the fact that I’m not entitled to the same rights and protections that as a citizen I have been promised.
Land of the free, home of the brave, my ass.