Friday, August 16, 2013

Too late

My arm is sore from patting myself on the back so much for being a strident supporter of equal rights for gay, lesbian, and transgender people.  I wrote this and got some things off my chest, and many of you were complimentary and supportive, and that was lovely.  

Elvis Presley recorded some 800 songs in his career, and to my knowledge In the Ghetto was the only one that addressed a social issue.  We all have our causes.  As a writer, I avoid using my digital soapbox to advocate, because in the end we all sing to our own choirs and go home with sore arms.  What's the point?  If it matters to you, sacrifice for it.  Go sleep in the Capitol rotunda for 31 days.    Stand on the right side of the street at a protest and get called a faggot.  Go out and get your skull cracked for the right to vote. 

And yet:

I need to tell you a story about how everything being done to support the gay rights movement, or the Big Gay Agenda, is just too late.  Too late for some anyway.  I saw an old friend this week in Texas.  An early mentor of mine, she has spent most of her life working on behalf of kids who are homeless, runaways, or otherwise lost and forgotten.  No better or worse a person than the rest of us, but a damn good egg.  In all the time I have known her she has been with her partner, Nadia,  another good egg.  They raised a family together, and their kids now have kids, and there is even a great-grand child at this point. 

Her partner, her love, and her soulmate  fell ill with a catastrophic brain injury, requiring many surgeries that she somehow survived.  She lost much of her ability to speak, and requires constant in home care, that my friend was willing and able to handle.  Instead, Nadia's aging mother was given power of attorney over her daughter, and promptly moved her 800 miles away from her home.  You see, Nadia's mother doesn't believe in gay.   Now, on the rarest occasion, they are permitted to see each other.  Nadia is making great progress, but is still unable to assert her wishes legally so this family remains broken, because by the laws of this land they are not a family at all. 

I hope on the day this nation arrives into the light, we celebrate even as we hang our heads in shame for the damage that can never be undone.

Have a nice weekend, enjoy your family time.

Juancho


7 comments:

Ms. Moon said...

Well there you have it. Right there.
All the horror of inequal rights. Right there.

lopo said...

F***!!!!!!

Nannygoat said...

What a stinking tragedy. I'm crying as I write this, one day after being invited to a wedding I wouldn't miss for the world. It's between a young man, born a girl, whose dad broke every bone in his body, trying to make him behave like a girl. Only he knew inside he was a boy, and he was left alone to figure it all out. He worked. He saved his money. He had his surgery and his prescription for hormones. And then he walked into my house, gracing it with a presence I badly needed then, two summers ago. And there was a girl who came around, also needing refuge, though her father loved and supported her. I don't know if she is gay or bi, and I don't much care. They fell in love, spending long nights talking in my spare room of my now-gone house. And now they are going to be married. I was honored to be invited, and not going is not an option for me. I'll be there in the back of the room somewhere, listening to them exchange vows and praying that even though this doesn't change that it's too late for Nadia, maybe, just maybe, our young people will take to the streets, gain political clout, and throw the likes of the people in Texas who could dare to do this to your friends right under the bus where they belong.

Anonymous said...

Having spent several weeks in Texas on several occasions doing a good work I met several really good down to earth people. In spite of the many exceptional people I met I always felt a presence of darkness and evil hovering over the place. I didn't like going there. Was always on alert while there and eagerly anticipated being back in Florida where I at least knew and recognized the enemy. That evil is manifested in stories like this one.

Juancho said...

I realize I misled y'all. We saw each other in Texas, but Kentucky and Oklahoma are the complicit states in this story, although you can just about take your pick.

Elizabeth said...

Holy shit. We need to be reminded of this, especially those of us who live in states that are more tolerant and lenient.

Magnum said...

Please don't take this as an attempt to hindsight-critique such a tragedy, but there is a simple legal issue here: Power of Attorney.
Sure, the mother swooped down in this case because well, that's what mothers do, even bigoted ones. If not Marriage (a legal contract), then use of another very easily obtained legal contract- Power of Attorney (completed ahead of time) can be a simple protection in such terrible situations.

And should not be necessary.