June 25, 2011 § 1 Comment
What was your first reaction to that statement? How do you really feel about it? How does my admission make you feel about me? Do you think your reaction is justified or fair? I am not gay, but what if I was? Let’s imagine for a second that you didn’t know me personally. Should you be able to glean from those two words all there is to know about me- my personality, my character, my values, my worth as human being; and from just those two words judge me as you see fit? Should what one does in the privacy of his or her home with whichever consenting adult(s) have any effect on your moral values and your personal life, or whether society can function? Ruminate on this for a moment.
So then why should someone being gay be of any concern to you? Put aside your religious beliefs. I don’t espouse to any religious thought, deity, nor do I personally believe any discussion is worthwhile when an argument begins and ends with “the bible says… qur’an says…god says…” I’ve always taken pride in knowing that I came from a culturally-mature society and I sometimes either looked down on or pitied America for its lack of any sense of culture. Now, I wonder where it all went and cringe with embarrassment when my people start talking about homosexuality.
Ghana is now slowly losing any sense of fairness and respect for ones personal choices I always imagined we took pride in possessing. You may not like how one lives his or her life but you didn’t interfere or device ways to harm him for the choices he made. Today, it seems every program includes a discussion about homosexuals, which is agreed by all that this is some western disease we need not adopt. It’s a cause of many social ills we should identify and perhaps eradicate (they never go far enough to specify, but I always picture Tutsis in Rwanda when they spewing their hate); and the scariest is when they start suggesting legislative action. The last thing any democracy needs is morality legislated from the religious views of some within it.
I ran into a man at my junction on my way into town. He, too, started decrying the “growing” problems with gays. HIV is on the rise, he says (actually HIV/Aids infections have dropped by about 40% worldwide), and gays are responsible. J.S.S. and S.S.S. students are being indoctrinated into the U.S. lifestyle, and soon we’ll be burdened with gay rights, he continued. I laughed a little inside when he reminded me of how others had sung the same tune not long ago. A few years ago republicans and religious nuts in the U.S. were saying the same thing, only then it was largely about gay marriage. But back then it was mostly a political tool to create a wedge issue to distract voters from more important issues. Over here, I’m not sure what aim all these bloviators have in mind, which will worry me a little if I was gay. Last year, the big issue was the so-called ground zero mosque. It didn’t matter to the crazies bussed into lower Manhattan that the building in mind was more a cultural centre than a mosque and that there was already a functioning mosque closer to ground zero. Back then, I asked a similar question: so what if there’s a mosque near ground zero? Why should Americans be alarmed or concerned by Islam or muslims? Why do we always give the xenophobes, bigots, and racists the microphone without care for whatever garbage they spew? One would have hoped these were some of the bad cultural exports these so-called leaders would’ve avoided.
How would you feel if someone approached you and said your brown skin or beige/pink mix offended his sensibilities and perhaps you needed to be registered and identified by government, or we needed to do away with your skin tone since it negatively affected the fabric of our society? Would you think it fair for him to pass judgment on you based solely on something you were born with and cannot change even if you wanted to? So then why feel it’s within our right to judge those who are simply different from us? (Btw, did you know it takes 50,000 years for my brown skin to naturally turn to let’s say Scandinavian pink if we switched climates permanently?)
As my tro-tro approached, I turned to my new friend and pointed to his bible “did you know King James was gay? If King James is gay what does that make you?” He stood in stunned silence and didn’t seem to have a comeback for me as he looked up to my departing van.