Homophobia-or not

Lately, the “controversy” of today’s world that seems to be bothering me the most is the “gay marriage” thing. Is it right? Who has a say on whether people should be allowed to do it anyway?

I feel so completely divided on this topic-on any given moment of any given day, I could be on either side. Most people (from either side) would say that this is ridiculous and that either a) gay marriage is obviously perfectly fine, or b) gay marriage is essentially a sin. But I can’t help how I feel-the problem is I can’t seem to decipher what exactly is right.

On one hand, I have many gay friends, including a gay aunt (and I truly love both my aunt and her partner, who are like parents to me), and in my high school, pretty much all of the teenagers and most of the teachers support gay rights, including marriage. I don’t see much harm in it, when I’m on the liberal side of me. It’s two people who love each other-that’s essentially what marriage is. Churches of course can keep their beliefs and don’t have to perfect same-sex ceremonies, but civil marriages-not entirely bad.  People are born that way, it’s not like they can just change. Besides, God made everyone in his image.

On the conflict of religious belief, I think that God believes that everyone should love each other (even when I’m vouching against gay marriage, I believe that you should treat everyone equally-I mean, God IS the one who is supposed to be handing out judgment). I just abhor how some people bash Catholics and Christians, like we’re a pit of pedophiles and gay haters. We’re not. In fact, most of the Catholics I know are either neutral or for gay marriage. It’s like the hippies of the 70’s who made it seem like everyone hated soldiers, because they were so outspoken and the media focused on them. People just seem to focus on the few Catholics and Christians that protest against gay marriage and disregard the calmer, kinder, less outspoken ones. No, just because I’m Catholic doesn’t mean that I believe all atheists and homosexuals are going to hell.

Then, on the other hand, I can’t help but think of my religion. You shouldn’t be a “cafeteria Christian”, picking and choosing what you want to believe; God states in the Bible (Old Testament, I do believe, which sometimes shows God in a very unloving way) that homosexuality is a sin. Even though God made all people in his image, there are still lots of evil-doers out there; they were just influenced by the devil. Again, I understand that for some this is a weak argument, but for me, it’s very real. To me sometimes, it’s almost like it’s against human nature. Sure, people are born that way, it’s a very sure thing. But sometimes it….it just feels that way. Marriage is supposed to be a sacred union between a man and woman, bonded forever, with the intent of purity and to raise children in the holy faith. And I believe this.

And a part of me understands homophobes, or at least the ones that don’t openly hate gays. Like my dad. He’s homophobic, but he treats gays just the same. He’s just a little “eh” about associating with gays and awkward about it. But, in the 80’s, when AIDS began, it was mostly linked to gays (the outbreak began in the gay community, and scientists have linked the beginnings to a single gay man). This disease, which took hundreds of lives within the first few months, scared lots of people, and when people aren’t entirely sure of what they are dealing with, it can bring chilling results and an attitude that most people wouldn’t normally bear. It’s like when you’re driving or walking in a bad neighborhood, keeping a captious eye out for trouble and suspecting every person who walks by you. It’s not that everyone is a thug whose going to be walking by-it’s just the fear of it that causes you to be prejudiced.

As with anything religious, the stakes are very high. Anyone who is wrong about this, well, as my history teacher said, no one can come back and tell you “Oh, you should have been a little more Jewish” or “there really is one true God who came to us through Muhammad”. No one is going to tell you, right before you die, if there isn’t a God or that you shouldn’t have been a supporter of abortion and gay rights because that was wrong. And this is exactly what makes me so hesitant to be so devoted to the cause. With the Catholics that tell me that the Bible and the way of God is always right comes this fear. It’s not so much the fear of being condemned in the afterlife-or maybe it is. It probably is. I just need to know that I am right, and finding the correct response in a sea of opinions is nearly impossible; choosing the right path, considering that they are opinions and technically no one could be completely correct.

These are just the opinions of an insignificant girl in high school. And since I’ve pretty much taken both sides, I could be attacked from either side. You can’t really tell me my opinions are wrong of course. Like so much in this life, it’s an opinion, though many people will deal with these things as if they are cold hard fact. That’s what can make the environment burdened with so much animosity.

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