Monday, January 07, 2013

Soon Every Day Will Be A Gay Day

Several years ago--many, actually--after I moved to Miami, Carlos and I went to Disney World. I'd been to Disneyland but not yet to the World. So, we did the Magic Kingdom and Epcot and had a really great time. Our last night, wee stayed late for the fireworks and found a beautiful spot beside a pond to watch the night sky light up.

As we were leaving, feeling all aglow, I took Carlos' hand in mine as we walked out of the park. Just ahead of us, a Lesbian couple was doing the same. Just ahead of that couple was, well, this guy, who looked back at The Lesbians and The Gays holding hands and said, "What do you think this is? Gay Day?"

To which one of the Lesbians replied, "Every day is gay day."

And the guy smirked, but kept moving. I like that story because it could have gotten ugly, but it just turned into a giggle and a smile.

Joel Diaz and his friend, Ethan, after a night out, decided on getting some people, and headed to a popular spot in their Columbus, Ohio neighborhood. As they stood in line at Mikey's Late Night Slice--apparently the pizza is that good--Joel and Ethan began holding hands.

Gay day, though not so much. At first.

A customer in front of the two men turned around and told the men to, ahem, cut that "gay shit" out.

There weren't a couple of Lesbians standing by to utter the line, "Every day is gay shit" or something, but something else, quite lovely happened that night. Almost every single person in the line that night made it clear to that guy to cut that Homophobic shit out.

And while Joel and Ethan, and another gay friend of theirs, stood up for themselves, and told the man that he couldn't speak to them like that and they wouldn't take his bigoted remarks at all, it was the straight people in line who stood up the loudest.

Of course, as bigots do when they get called on their hate, he continued spewing venom, ignoring the entire crowd. And that was when the people working at Mikey's shouted to the man that they would not serve him because he was spewing hate. They said they support everyone in our community and that he should get out of line because they would not be serving him. He begrudgingly got out of line and walked away escorted by a friend who had been hanging back.

How simple is that? Stand up against hate. Say something, do something, non-violent, and the hate has no place to go, except home.

Joel wrote up his story for a Facebook post and shared it with friends, who, of course, shared it with friends and so on and so on. Suddenly the post had gone viral and people everywhere--even in a small town in South Carolina--began telling the story of standing up against hate.

And the more it’s shared the more people stand up. The more people realize it was just a couple standing in line for pizza and holding hands against the cold. And what's not to like about that?

Stories like this give me hope for the future--especially as more states fall into the Equality Column. People, straight people, are beginning to finally realize that being gay isn't "shit" it's just being gay. And two men, or two women, holding hands in Columbus Ohio or in the Happiest Place On Earth should be treated no differently than any other couple anywhere else.

Read Joel Diaz's tale at HuffPo Gay Voices

12 comments:

robertga99 said...

Love those stories. I had something similar happen recently. There was a new guy(renter) in my town home community who just would not abide by the parking rules. I am on the board and he was sent several letters and another board member said they had talked to him til he was blue in the face. So I had his truck towed. The next morning he was outside and some lady who had told him she saw me with the tow truck driver. The next thing he started spewing hate. "I'm gonna kick that fags ass". "Who does that fag think he is"...blah...blah...blah. I called him later and he asked who it was and I said it was the fag calling. I can stand up to people like that but what touched me was the people who heard him calling me that and put him in his place and even told him if he went after the "fag" he would have to go through them first. I've been really surprised how the times seem to be changing, especially with straight guys. Two of my best friends now are straight guys. That really surprises me...especially in the "Bible Belt" but I am oh so thankful.

Anonymous said...

Loves a happy ending! And on a Monday even!

the dogs' mother said...

Hey! That's me on the above post - froggy/dogsmother/....! Let's try this again.

the dogs' mother said...

arrrgghhhh. now the happy ending post disappeared. wth!?

Ron said...

Bob,

Thanks for posting this. I posted the story to my Facebook timeline. This is something I firmly believe in, standing up to homophobia when it rears its ugly head. It's nice to know that we're now getting straight support and they aren't afraid of standing with us.

Ron

R.J. said...

I read about this on HuffPo and I couldn't stop smiling. This was in Ohio of all places!

Bill Dameron said...

Bob, I read this on Huffpo as well and it is a great story. You might be interested in Lady Bunny's follow up to the post.

Paul and I do not display a lot of publication affection, but we don't shy away from it either. He calls me "Sweetie" and the other day, I noticed he called me that in the locker room at our very straight gym. There was no reaction from any of the other guys. A testament to how (hopefully) our society is becoming.

Ms Sparrow said...

Woohoo! Thanks for sharing!

anne marie in philly said...

I cannot wait for the day that 2 guys or 2 girls holding hands in public is NOT ridiculed.

I am going to send this blog entry to 3 friends of mine in the columbus area and tell them to support that pizza place! I wish I could!

Wonder Man said...

Ohio!

Mark in DE said...

Posts like this make me feel really hopeful about the NEAR future. :-)

anne marie in philly said...

update from a friend in columbus; I'll let her tell the story.

"Dude, Midnight Slice is the SHIT! I fucking love that place. Even more so now.

ETA: side note, the area where this is is predominantly gay. Shitbag was in the WRONG neighborhood."

there ya have it.