Join Prism Book Alliance® as Brandon Witt goes Outside the Margins today.
I’m sure nearly every Outside the Margin blog you will read during the month of July will center around Marriage Equality, and I have to join the party.
I’ll start with this: I am so very thankful for all that has lead up to this event, and I truly feel more like a member of this country than I have in a long, long time. For some reason, I actually didn’t predict feeling that way. But I do, and while I’m no longer very patriotic, it kinda makes some of that come back.
Honestly, I’m most excited to see how it will affect upcoming queer kids in the next several generations. I’m hopeful and excited that they have the chance to feel ‘normal.’
That said, I want to give thanks for being the age I am in this very minute.
While I’ve never had the risk of being put in jail for my sexuality, like was possible not too long ago, I grew up in a time where being gay meant you were damned, people hated you. Some others of my generation didn’t experience that on a personal scale, but they grew up in cities and with different families. I always say that the town I grew up in was a few decades behind the times. And I am so glad I had the privilege to go through that. Do I have scars? Yeah, and they run deep. However, and I so don’t mean this in an arrogant way, I’m one of the strongest people I know (and I still manage to break often), and that is solely due to the first 24 years of my life. I doubt I would be writer if I had grown up in any other way. And there is nothing I want to change about that.
Having grown up in this way and then joining the gay culture during this time, I still cling to some of the gay ways. I love me drag queen. I want the Dykes on Bikes at Pride. I don’t want your traditional marriage, thank you. (Though I do want, and fought for, the right to marry.) I don’t want life in the burbs with kids. None of those things are bad or lesser, not at all, but they are not me. And I’m thankful for that. Growing up where did, sadly, as part of that culture, I didn’t understand Black History Month, or why an immigrant would want to hold on to the culture of their homeland. They were here, they chose to be here. Let it go already. I understand now, both of those and more. I’m not one to believe that the queer community finds equality in conformity. I am not a gay version of a straight man. I am not a gay version of straight woman. I am a gay man. And I want to keep that culture, not that it is for everyone, but it is for me. And I do believe we need to hold on to it in one way or the other. Otherwise, we and future queers will not know where we came from and truly who we are and what privilege we have. And power.
And that is the gist of my thankfulness to be nearing middle age at this time. (Wow, that’s the first time I’ve acknowledged that out loud…. Mortality anyone?) I got a lot of that history and formation first hand. However, I got to witness the change! The fight! The struggle! I’ve marched, I’ve rallied, I held signs, I went to capitol and listened to arguments and watched them debate my worth. I got to see the history books being written. Though I did nothing to have my name one, I was there, and therefore a part of them nonetheless. We all are! How fucking amazing is that! We got to see it and live it!
And, now I get the privilege many that came before me missed, fought for, and missed, simply due to the year of their birth. I can get married. I can write gay books and actually have hope that someone will read them. I can have kids. I can shout that I am gay from a rooftop and not risk anything other than a noise violation or a bully below. Big deal. (Yes, I know the employment laws haven’t caught up yet but they will.) I get to be considered equal. Not by everyone, maybe not by most. But by the law.
I wouldn’t trade one single iota. Not one.
I’m so glad you all are living the history books along side me.
About Brandon Witt
Brandon Witt resides in Denver, Colorado. When not snuggled on the couch with his two Corgis, Dunkyn and Dolan, he is more than likely in front of his computer, nose inches from the screen, fingers pounding they keys. When he manages to tear himself away from his writing addiction, he passionately takes on the role of a special education teacher during the daylight hours.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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