March 28, 2013

Just like us

I haven't weighed in on Twitter or Facebook with my opinion about gay marriage by changing my avatar, but to be absolutely clear, I support it and I always have.

Does a post about gay marriage belong on this blog? Some would debate that it does not, but from my perspective, I am for equality for all in every aspect of our lives. I've talked about that frequently by pointing out how long it took for service clubs to allow women to join their ranks. On International Woman's Day, I discussed how even women can keep women down. It's inconceivable to me that as human beings we would want to keep anyone down for any reason.

Last weekend, I finally went to the theater to see Django Unchained. I'm not a Quentin Tarantino fan, so I had put off seeing it longer than I would normally do for an award-winning film. I absolutely enjoyed the movie, even more than the other film that dealt with human rights last year, Lincoln.

The movies shared the same message: for more than 150 years, black people, or African-Americans if you prefer, have struggled to be equal. Women suffrage movements began about the same time, yet today women and other minorities are still struggling for equality. Moving forward with gay marriage rights must happen now for it will still take years for it to be accepted by all. Proclaiming human rights through the judicial system is only part of the battle. The practice must become part of the mainstream culture as well.

Service clubs should be part of the culture that leads the way. Service clubs must be intolerant of intolerance, and demonstrate that message by opening their doors to more diverse members, partners, and stakeholders. We know that our lives are richer when we broaden our circle of friends; and likewise, our community service will be more meaningful when we embrace and empower those who are different, yet still, just like us.
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