Weighing Outrage and Anonymity

I found out last evening that my son’s high school is not permitting same sex couples to attend the prom together.  Of course they can go, but they cannot go as each other’s dates.

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Before I go on let me get some things straight.  I believe that gay individuals are born that way.  I believe that God made them, as he made me, in his own image.  I believe that God does not make mistakes.  You do the math. 

I also believe that you can’t help who you fall in love with.  It’s chemistry, pheromones or whatever.  It happens.  And since I am a firm believer that life is too short not to follow your heart, I believe same sex couples should be left alone, allowed to marry, and allowed to raise a family in peace just like everyone else.

This is my belief and it has been for as long as I can remember.  You do not have to agree with me and you don’t have to like it.  However, I am not interested in this becoming a forum for you to try and change my mind.  You can’t.  If you don’t like it, stop reading…you won’t hurt my feelings in the least. It’s your right and I respect it.  Please respect mine.

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Okay – whew!  Glad that part is over…now on to the rest of my rant.

I hate injustice of any kind.  I am loud and vocal and sometimes obnoxious when I come across injustice that isn’t being rectified, addressed or otherwise noted.  This is one of those times. 

When #2 son shared this information with me last night I did what I always do – I began fuming and ranting and just plain going off half-cocked.  He sat silent.  We went for a walk.  He remained silent.  He let me talk and ruminate and just plain get it off my chest.  And still he remained silent except for the occasional clarification of one issue or another.  My son has learned his lessons from his father very well indeed.

By the time the walk was done I had calmed down and decided NOT to march my mommy ass up to the school to confront the administration.  I had decided against picket signs, petitions and phone campaigns.  I had decided to first do some research and find out what the actual situation was and then, calmly, decide what action I will take.

But make no mistake, I will take action.

When #3 son came home, he also sat down to discuss this with me (I’m beginning to think they actually plotted how and when to tell me for fear I would find out elsewhere and really embarrass them).  He expressed his concern that this would come back to hurt our family and, more importantly, that his gay friends might fall victim to a hate crime or just prematurely be “outed” to their parents.  (For many of them, their friends know but not their parents…very sad but certainly not my business.)

I thanked him for sharing his concerns.  I assured him that I heard him and that I wouldn’t do anything without consulting he and his brother first.  I more firmly resolved to move slowly. 

This morning I emailed a reporter friend of mine at our local paper to ask her for guidance and whether or not I’m the only one out here who thinks this is a crock of shit.  I’m waiting for her reply as I write this.

Where I started hoping to get this changed by the prom in two weeks (ha-ha) and then moved to getting it changed by their Senior Prom, I have now decided that I would just like to bring awareness and shine a light into some dark places that hide here in the south.  I’m trying to balance my Civic Mindedness with my kids’ wish to remain anonymous.  It’s not easy.

But I’m a grown up who is used to fighting my own battles – they are not.  They are teenagers still trying to figure out which battles are theirs and for which they are willing to fight.  I’m hoping by taking this slowly and doing it the right way they can see that change can happen without violence, anger and hate.  At the same time, we don’t have to sit idly by and just let an injustice pass because it’s inconvenient or may cause us some discomfort.  That we have voices and they can be heard.  And that we can choose whether or not we’re going to make them heard and how.

And that even if nothing happens, you’ll know in your heart that you DID something and that maybe next time something WILL change.

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” ~Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

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3 thoughts on “Weighing Outrage and Anonymity

  1. Yeah you rock alright. I do like what you think and I do agree with you and I will keep reading alright! What about hosting a pre-prom party at your place for all your kids straight friends plus all the same-sex couples they know. Invite any other parents who feel like you do, take lots of photos and tell them to come back afterwards, and that way you send a message to the kids and others in the community that any love is ok in your book and you don't consider yourself fit to judge how others should live their lives.

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