It really is exactly that simple.
I have a strong belief that asking nosy questions is an incredibly rude thing to do, and I find it particularly appalling when person A asks person B to identify his or her sexual orientation. What could be more personal, and private, than what consenting adults do in their own bedrooms? For this reason, I don’t ask questions on this subject, nor do I tell (when asked). To ask would be rude, and to answer such a nosy question would be to encourage rudeness. I don’t wish to do either.
There is exactly one situation I can think of where person A needs such information from person B, and that is if person A wants to have sex with person B. Even then, though, are there not far better ways to begin a flirtatious conversation?
At a school where I used to teach, I co-sponsored a student-initiated GSA, or Gay-Straight Alliance. On the basis of this co-sponsorship, plus my wearing a rainbow-colored wristband, many assumed that I was gay. To make a statement about how such things do not matter, I refused to ever confirm, nor deny, such rumors. On Facebook, I didn’t answer the “interested in” questions, nor did my blog reveal my sexual orientation — until now.
At this time, having considered the ramifications carefully, I’ve decided it is time to come out. I’m teaching at a new school, and am no longer co-sponsoring a GSA. I’ve kept quiet on the subject of my own sexual orientation long enough to make my point. And, now, I’m going to make another point . . . by coming out, here and now.
Yes, world, I admit it . . . I am a raving heterosexual, and one who has finally decided to come out — as a straight person. I’m not ashamed of it; this is part of who I am. There may be some who do not approve of this, but I do not have to care what they think.
In case my point is escaping you, please consider what it is like for gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and others who don’t conform to society’s norms, to do what I just did. Imagine what it would be like, for “heteros,” if social pressure favored homosexuality, rather than heterosexuality. How many “straights,” in such a world, would be willing to risk being ostracized, losing their jobs, being shunned by former friends and family, etc., simply for admitting they have a preference for the other sex, rather than the same one? If you, yourself, are also straight, and lived in a gay-dominated world, would you have the courage to come out as one of “those people,” the “heteros,” with their allegedly-“disgusting” sexual practices?
It’s ridiculous that anybody has to think about such things. “Live and let live” is not too much to ask — of anyone.
The government is now deeply involved in the process of people getting into and out of marriages, but this was not always so. Marriage is simply an agreement — a contact — between at least two people. Or a person and a toaster, perhaps, for that doesn’t really hurt any of us, now, does it?
Churches do lots of weddings, and they’re used to this role. They can keep doing it the same way they have been, except for parts which involve government. Churches could issue marriage licenses; we don’t need the state doing it.
Now, of course, people shouldn’t be required to be religious, or pretend to be, to get married. Any organization or individual could issue marriage licenses. For that matter, we could simply have official recognition of people’s relationship statuses on Facebook.
Yes, I mean that. Why not?
It used to be really simple. There’s no good reason for it to have become so complicated. Let’s fix that, with separation of marriage and the state.
Now, at the same time, we will need to change certain other things. Right now, the state encourages people to marry, with varying tax rates for married and single people. I contend that this is not a proper role for the state. There should be no reward for marrying, nor should there be any kind of penalty. They’re our marriages, not the government’s. Government should simply have stayed out of such matters, and should get out of them now.