It was “Dad’s night out” as I watched the end of a huge Hollywood blockbuster. In the movie, a fictional USA was in tatters having just overcome a violent and destructive enemy. Many iconic landmarks had been ruined and lay in shambles, ready to be reborn and refashioned into a greater America. The fictional president stood and gave the final stirring speech of the movie. His words were full of ideals and principles about everything that makes America extraordinary, spoken in the language of the founding fathers characteristic of the Declaration of Independence on the brink of a revolution. .
It made me start to wonder. Where is the LGBT version of this declaration of independence? Our community has been through a real-life version of this onslaught. We have been attacked from all sides and every American ideal that we hold dear has been brought into question. We have come to understand that many others consider us exempt from those ideals.
The election last November was the culmination of almost two years of intense public LGBT bashing and debate. Over that period, indignations that LGBT lives had to endure were glorified on the right and scrutinized by the left. The election itself was a watershed moment that raised new hope for evolution in the popular opinion.
Although government policy seems to be improving and polls show growing enlightenment in the populace, throughout American society LGBT citizens continue to be derided and demoralized. From the denial of service of various wedding support providers to the most recent humiliation of a male married couple at the hands of a medical institution, one thing has become clear. A war of humiliation has been declared on LGBT citizens.
As I sat in that movie theater, I yearned for a counter, and emphatic, declaration of war to be made on behalf of all LGBT Americans, a revolution in the name of human decency, so I wrote such a declaration myself.
I wrote it with deep homage to Founding Father and author Thomas Jefferson. My goal was to stay true to his “voice” and extend that voice to the principles that drive our current civil rights movement.
I, therefore, humbly offer my fellow Americans:
The LGBT Declaration of Independence
When in the Course of Human Events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve their spiritual and emotional reliance which has subjugated them beneath a domineering majority, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the sharing of an equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s Higher Powers entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of Man and Womankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the Separation from destructive standards, nonsensical assumptions and demoralization.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men and Women, no matter what instinctive companionship needs drive their emotional health or their spiritual intimacies within the age of consent, are created equal. They are endowed by their Ethereal Core with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
–That to secure these rights, Societies including governments and a collective conscience, whether religiously or secularly designed, are instituted among Men and Women, deriving their just powers from the Consent within the Mosaic of integrated Lives,
–That whenever any form of Mob Elitism becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new ideals of Human Principles of decency laying their foundation on such Principles and organizing their powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect the Safety and Happiness of all, not just a selected few. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Societies long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience has shown us, that Man and Womankind are more disposed to suffer conventional injustices, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they have been made accustomed from a long tradition of misogynistic and homophobic Assumptions. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such nonsensical Standards and to provide new Ideals for their future security.
–Such has been the patient sufferance of women and LGBT and other marginalized Americans; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to reject their former Acceptance of perceived Inferiority. The history of the present heterosexist Patriarchy is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over any deemed outside of an arbitrary self-defined norm. Moving forward and holding with our independence from the previous destructive force in our lives, we declare that we expect the following as Society’s treatment of our community:
- Henceforth, we expect the privacy of our individual physical beings be under our own determination whether for reproduction purposes or gender identification. This includes how we have our children, where they came from, whether our safe parenting is worthy, and exactly what genitals are beneath our clothing. You have poked, studied and inquired enough. You are done.
- We expect to be evaluated by our work and contributions and compensated fairly as compared to others providing the same work and contribution.
- We expect the same level of public acceptance and respect as any other members of society. We expect the same dignity for our family units that others rightly receive. We expect the love and care we establish for our children to be as honored as it is in any other family.
- We expect to be able to relocate anywhere in our country without having our family protections and stability disappear or be thrown into question. A job offer in another state should not be the equivalent of divorce.
- We expect a reasonable notion around the concept of “religious freedom.” The notion should protect all, ourselves included, to choose paths of self-spiritual growth. It should never be applied in such a way as to tyrannize or dictate to others how their lives are to be lived or what legal protections they may enjoy.
- We expect the right to love and marry the consenting adult we want and who returns our affection with their own free will.
- We expect the same right to home and family as heterosexuals have had.
- We expect to earn a living and take responsibility for our lives as other citizens do based on our talents, merits and abilities.
- We expect to be equal brethren to contribute and to receive from the common good.
- We expect fair play and the chance to do our best.
We, therefore, the Members of the LGBT Community of the United States of America, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good people of this Society, solemnly publish and declare, that the LGBT Community of the United States is, and of Right ought to be, Free and Independent; that our Community may live our lives in Peace and Contentment and to partake in all other life acts that other Americans may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Dignities and our sacred Honor.
Sincerely, the underscored. (To sign, please respond in the comment section with your name,)
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Special thanks to Rachel Hockett for editing help on this article.