The Luxury of My Outrage

I’m stuck, so I’m just going to type.

I’m not just stuck with writing and blogging, I’m stalled at work, my house is a mess, and I’m not even sleeping.

A combination of outrage fatigue (a brilliant term coined by The Onion) and a nasty stomach bug have stolen my creativity. Honestly, the Indiana and Arizona laws have me so disturbed, I feel like they caused my stomach bug, or at least made me more susceptible to it and slower to heal from it.

I feel like I need to say something about this. I need to use my words. Couldn’t I make a difference? At least to myself?

There was a national outcry against the Indiana law, and it did make a difference. There were petitions, phone calls, people took to social media. There was this:

Rihanna on Indiana Law: Fuck That Shit

I would like to think that was what sent Mike Pence back to make provisions to protect LGBT rights (a little). But it was probably the CEOs and managers of major corporations, Universities and the NCAA speaking up that did it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m REALLY glad that happened and it made a difference. It’s just troublesome that the law passed in the first place, and the similar law in Arizona almost passed, given the public outcry against them. And it’s troublesome that it took economic threats to make politicians consider human rights.

I’ve read some really eloquent, passionate and convincing articles speaking out against the laws from both non-Christians and Christians. I think they must help, and maybe they do, but because I am a masochist, I read the comments.

It makes me think about when I was little and my friend and I used to flip over rocks to see the creepy crawlies underneath. I look at the comments, hoping for good things and finding the creepy crawlies.

The people who hate will not be convinced by anything. Their arguments are not based on reason or logic. They aren’t even arguments, just different ways of saying hateful things.

What is there to say, then? Nothing to them, I think. Hateful people are happiest when they are hating. They will seek the “information” that reinforces how they already feel.

So I will say this to my gay, lesbian and bisexual friends and family:

I love you so much. I love you, and I’m sorry your right to exist is on the fucking news all the time as part of a political agenda.

I love you, and if you think there is something I can say or do that is different or that can help, please tell me. Please.

I am CONSTANTLY humbled by your ability to be such caring wonderful people despite all that you see and hear and put up with.

When things like what has happened over the past couple of weeks hit the news, I have the luxury of being outraged, and whining about my “outrage fatigue.”

I don’t have the daily worry about being fired or targeted for a verbal or physical attack because of who my partner is. I understand that I don’t even understand all the ways you have to live differently from me to either keep yourselves physically safe or keep your souls from beings suffocated.

My gay, lesbian and bisexual friends and family are some of the best people I know. Because you are, I am guilty of a prejudice, and I apologize. I tend to like GBLTQIA people when I first meet them (granted, I live in the south, so not many people feel safe being out here).

I know that this automatic liking is as unfair as an automatic disliking. Everyone deserves the right to be a jerk. I try to be mindful of that, but maybe I seem safer to some because I know you. That can’t be a bad thing, right?

Anyway, there it is. I will keep watching, speaking up where I can, and trying to understand. Thank you for being a treasured part of my life.

Are You the Baddie?

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Just for kicks, just because the world isn’t difficult enough, and things aren’t terrible enough and there isn’t hate enough, a delegate from Virginia has introduced a fun new bill. This bill would allow any organization, private or public to use religious beliefs to openly discriminate against gay people. The measure is unlikely to pass, but it has been introduced. Publicly. Proudly. To me, that suggests this hate-monger exists within a disturbing feedback loop of people who share his twisted ideas. That there are enough people who would encourage him in his bigotry should not surprise me. Why does it?

This delegate, just like many before him, is attempting to deny another person’s human rights based on his own religious beliefs. There is a sociopathic disconnect that would allow you to believe that causing injury to another human being is your right. I’m pretty sure that this jack-hole doesn’t understand what “rights” are. Why should he? He’s a white, allegedly straight male following the country’s majority religion. His is a life of pure privilege. Much like a spoiled child who has never heard no, he doesn’t know the difference between rights and privileges.

i want it all

By the way, some may dismiss the measure as pointless, saying that business owners are already allowed to deny people service for any reason. However, this piece of garbage (am I talking about the guy or the legislation? Let’s leave that to your imagination) specifically included PUBLIC institutions. That means that a gay citizen in the lovely state of Virginia could be denied a car registration, the assistance of the police, or attendance at school. Feel your religious freedom flow through you! So much freedom, I can hardly stand it!

Whenever I contemplate doing something wrong, I get an icky, sticky black feeling in my stomach. That is my conscience, something I developed despite my completely a-religious upbringing.

Here’s what I wonder: In the group of yes-men and/or yes-women surrounding this wack-job, is there nobody who gets that icky, sticky black feeling? Someone among this guy’s fans, friends, families and followers has to feel it. Someone has to be sitting there with these people, nodding along with his hate-fueled tirades and feel a little ill. I wonder if this imaginary someone ever speaks up and says, “Are we the baddies?”

I hope they do, and I hope they take anyone else still capable of sense and compassion, and they abandon the bunker to join the other side. Come on over. It’s lovely here. There are hugs and rainbows and laughter and love. Because let’s face it, even if you don’t have a skull on your hat, if your hatred is based on someone else’s love, you are the baddie.