Today, I woke up to a sea of beautiful rainbow colors all over our social media accounts. Finally, SCOTUS has ruled in favor of marriage equality across the country. One of the tweets that came up that struck me was this one from the New York Times detailing the changes that have been made in legislation over the past 2 decades. It really puts into perspective how far we have turned things around in the past twenty years.
I use the phrase “turned things around” rather than “come so far” very consciously. Because same-sex love is not a new concept. Neither is their want to be treated as equal and their request for the right to be bound in marriage. Looking into the history of the world, from Egypt to Rome to China, there are examples of homo and bisexuality. In fact, many findings suggest that intolerance of this huge percentage of the world’s population (about 1 in 10) is newer than acceptance of this group. Anyone who has studied the cultural norms of Ancient Greece, Rome, India or Egypt doesn’t have to search far to see that sexuality was not exclusively shared between a man and a woman.
There is the hope that we will continue to reverse old wrongs and instead really start moving forward. While there have been many times when same-sex relationships were more accepted, they have never really been free of discrimination and prejudice. This is true of almost every minority group throughout the world. And it really is time that we embrace the fullness of equality for all — in legislation, rights and attitude.
It seems like such a simple concept — treat everyone as an equal. But, it is anything but simple to put into practice. Beliefs are difficult to change. Altering laws always means years of struggling through red tape and opposition. But, it is a fight that involves all of us. One group taking one step towards equality opens the door for another. Marriage equality helps to fuel the fire that will get us closer to gender equality and might help to foster a new generation that is less prone to fear what they don’t fully understand (or give them the tools they need to understand it.)
It is a happy and triumphant day for the LGBTQ community and allies everywhere across America and the world. The journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step. And America took a big one today.
Tokii is committed to supporting the LGBTQ community through our brand Wearable Therapy, which features a number of designs created to start conversations about issues like marriage equality and equal rights for members of the LGBTQ community.