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Lavender Senior, Like President Evolves On Gay Marriage


I must admit, I have evolved on the issue of “Gay Marriage.”

Just like many Americans, and especially President Obama, I have come to terms with how and why I now support same-sex marriage, but unlike the President, my evolution had that I am a member of the “gay community.”

For years I sat on the fence when asked by my straight friends, and business associates, on how my partner and I felt about the issue of marriage. Knowing that many of them were against the fact, I proceeded to take a less direct approach, hoping to win support and I would say, “Oh we feel that the M word is not important. It’s doesn’t matter what you call it, civil union or domestic partners, as long as we receive the same rights as a married couple. You know, a rose by any other name still smells just as sweet.”

Boy, now that I see that statement and hear those word rolling through my minds ear, I say, that’s full of crap.

My partner of almost 23 years is the reason I started to evolve away from my “separate but equal” way of looking at same-sex marriages. He nudged me and challenged me mentally to constantly check the logic in my stand and when I did, it was obvious, separate but equal didn’t work in the 60’s and 70’s with the black community so why would it work for the LGBT community now?

My parents, in their small part, were activist during the 60’s and supported civil rights. I paused to remember my father’s sermons and his admonishment of the congregation in the facts that the separation of the “Body of Christ” by color in worship was not right and how he brought a black pastor into his pulpit and thereby being the first to do so in the Mahoning Valley. He was also the first white pastor to preach in a black church because he believed in that equality of sameness and put it into practice.

Now the last big civil rights issue we face as Americans must be conquered and “same but equal” does not bring that about.

So, yes the M word means a lot.

It means my love and devotion to my partner is just the same, just as important and relevant as my heterosexual friends marriages.

By saying that Bob and I can marry means that we no longer will be thought of as second class citizens.

Yes, “…a rose by any other name” may smell just as sweet but a rose is a rose and not a carnation.

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