Woolworth Lunch Counter Appreciation Day
I’m at a weird place in my life – I’m old enough to be able to remember the Time Before. I suppose everyone gets to this point if they live long enough. Our reward is that we can either amaze (or bore) the young with our vast knowledge of history that has happened in our own actual lifetime.
I remember the time Before Civil Rights. Just barely, but some things I remember distinctly, because I was learning about them at the age where a child, not knowing any better, asks hard questions.
I remember my mom telling me that the nice neighbor lady did not believe that black and white people should be allowed to get married.
“Why?” I asked. The toughest question of all.
“Well, honey, because of her religion.”
We weren’t religious, so I didn’t understand.
“If you’re religious and you’re black and white, you can’t get married?”
“No, just some religions.”
“They believe it isn’t natural for white and black people to get married.”
I remember that. I remember people believing that it wasn’t natural for two races to mix. I remember they had Bible verses to back it up – the mark of Cain, darkness upon them, that sort of thing. The same people who seemed very nice and friendly believed this earnestly.
Now I’m looking back on this history as I look on the present. Now the nice, friendly people are saying it isn’t right for gay people to get married. No one talks about interracial marriage anymore. Apparently now interracial marriage IS natural. It isn’t something religious people concern themselves with anymore, or admit they ever did.
No, now it is gay people that aren’t natural. Two women, two men, they can’t love each other the way we can. Even though millions of people do. Even though many gay couples stay together for decades, lifetimes. It isn’t what God wants, though hundreds of species have homosexual behavior, it isn’t what God created.
You know what? I don’t believe it. I don’t believe those people are talking about free speech. I don’t believe they hate the sin but love the sinner. I don’t believe, because I have seen history with my own eyes and those people were wrong back then and they’re sure as hell wrong now.