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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Breaking Stereotypes And Blurring Labels

            “Wow, really? I mean, you just seem very straight-acting,” is the response I usually get when I come out to people I have just met. Those who have known me for longer, however, say it kind of makes sense; “you never did talk about girls,” my one friend from high school phrased it. Up until recent decades, the only people who have been labeled gay are the ones who were obviously not your typical male or female. They were the emaciated men that pranced around singing show tunes in a high-pitched falsetto, or the overweight girls that watch football in gym shorts while sporting a short hair cut. But gays are everywhere… we could be anyone.
            People think, “I can’t be gay because society won’t accept me and besides, look how easy it is to blend in as straight. Better not rock the boat.” But us people (not even gays) want to be happy, and if we are going to be happy, we have to be ourselves, open and honestly.
            Ever since I came out, I’ve been the happiest, purest, most me I can remember. Before, when I heard gay comments I would feel awkward and get silent, or even defensive if it was directed towards me. I made the “leap of faith” (as opposed to “coming out of the closet”) the summer after my junior year of high school. I told one girl at a my house during a little shin dig, and within five minutes all the girls were asking me questions and talking amonst themselves about it. I think it eased some of their broken hearts, but it was fascinating to many to say the least.
            I made it a point to come out to my grade and my entire school because I knew that there must have been others like me who felt the same about his/her sexuality. I wanted to set an example that we can be proud and confident and successful just like everyone else. I was class president, captain of my wrestling team, and I was gay. My friends and peers were very accepting and I knew I had done the right thing.
            All I’m saying is that society has a certain view of what gay is, but each of us has the power to change that. Just look at the dehomophobification of the US military (yes, I made that word up) or the spreading of gay marriage from state to state (California, get your shit together). As long as you’re a good person, mean well, and try hard, then none of your true friends will ever turn their back on you. And the rest are just low-life, immature, assholes, and their time is waning. ‘Nough said.