Hickey: Putting a face on same-sex marriageWritten by Emily Hickey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Same-sex marriage. We all have feelings about it, whether we are for it or against it. Politics aside, I want the Toledo community to put a face to same-sex marriage. I want the Toledo community to understand this is not just a fight for a law, this is a fight for me.
My American dream is to live a fulfilled life complete with a wife, children, a home, a career. A compilation of all the things I can be proud of when my life is over. I want to be married one day, yet my world is telling me I’m not worthy of being married.
My heart swells up with hope and confusion and disappointment and joy at all of the headlines today that speak of same-sex marriage.
I come from a strong and supportive family that has taught me the true meaning of what a family is meant to be. It’s meant to be an escape from the troubles of life, a place to run to when the times get tough. It’s meant to be a source of unconditional love that never wavers. It’s meant to be a model for society and to show just what greatness the feeling of love can create. My parents have taught me that a family can not be defined, it has to be felt.
Same-sex marriage. Take religion out of the fight and what do you have? You have a fight for love. You have a fight for what defines a family. A family should not be defined, it should be felt.
I want to be married because I want to share the rest of my life with one person like my parents have done.
I want to be married because I want my future children to have two parents who can equally protect them.
I want to be married so that my future wife will be legally and financially taken care of after I pass away.
I want to be married so that the children I do have with my future wife are not taken away from her just because she is not legally recognized as their parent.
I want to be married so that my future wife can be provided the same benefits as me to ensure whatever life brings our way I can be confident she will be taken care of just as well I am.
I want to be married for me.
I want an equal whom I can love and gain support from.
I do not want to be married to ruin society.
I do not want to be married for any God.
It was not my choice to be a lesbian; therefore I do not see it as fair that someone is able to choose to take away a right that every heterosexual American has the luxury of registering for Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.
In the argument of choice, ask yourself this: Who would choose to be something that other countries would kill you for? Who would choose to be something that entire
religions condemn? Who
would choose to be something that people automatically hate you for?
There is no excuse for you as an American citizen to pretend that you don’t know any gay person, because through this column you are getting to know me.
Should you still be against my fight for my American dream, I would like you to look me in the eye and tell me exactly why I, Emily Hickey, am unworthy.
Take religion out of the fight and what do you have?
You have a girl named Emily Hickey who was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio who is fighting for a right that every heterosexual person has whether or not they have a desire to be married, whether or not they are religious and whether or not they have ever been in love.
You have a girl who is a hopeless romantic and just hopes that one day she can find someone to love and be with for the rest of her life, just like her parents who have been married for nearly 30 years.
You have a girl who wants to raise a family with another woman to ensure they are provided with the most fulfilling life.
You have a girl who wants to be married to make sure that her future wife will be legally and finally taken care of after she passes away.
You have a girl who just wants her wife next to her in her hospital bed after she’s had surgery.
You have a girl who wants her future wife to be provided the same benefits as me to ensure whatever life brings our way I can be confident she will be taken care of just as well I am.
You have a girl who is sick and tired of being told every single day that she is unworthy of the American dream she grew up believing she could attain.
You have a girl dreaming of her father walking her down the aisle.
Politics aside, when you choose to fight for equal rights or fight against them, you are directly fighting me.
Since 2004, the great State of Ohio has enforced a law stating that there is a ban on same-sex marriage.
To those that oppose, while I believe everyone is entitled to an opinion, when you have an opinion over my future I most certainly take every decision you make and voice very personally. To those that support, I encourage you to speak up even if your voice shakes. It is through our united fight that I am confident the State of Ohio will see the future of society, a future that will allow me to have the same rights as my older brother and my younger sisters.
Be brave, stand strong and help me fight for my future wife and the family that we will have together. Fight for my future children so that they will not feel unworthy as I have been made to feel unworthy for the past 24 years.
Many people I speak to are shocked by the laws that this state and this country have directly against me and how I hope to live the rest of my life. I ask those people to help me spread the word of our oppression and encourage those around them to stand up and fight.
For those that feel this social “issue” is worthy of being overlooked, I ask you to think again because it is the exception that you make and your choice to look past this social issue that cause me to feel unworthy of attaining my American dream.
We can’t all go directly to Congress and request a change but we can help to open the minds around us through conversation. Speak up in your college classes even if you become the minority. Speak up at your family parties even if you’re the only one. Speak up to the strangers behind you in line talking about why they deny me my right to live my American dream.
I will continue to fight until I am no longer a second-class citizen in my own country. Whether it takes five or 50 years, my desire for an equal life will not subside. Please help me fight for the right for my father to walk me down the aisle to my future wife, legally.