Dear Governor Schwarzenegger –
Two prominent black gay men are in the news.
John Amaechi is a former NBA player who came out of the closet in February 2007 and became a media sensation — as well as the target for ugly homophobic rants and jokes.
“You’ve got the black people stereotype,” says Amaechi, “that black people are strong, can jump high, are really quick and very masculine. Then because you’ve got this one stereotype of black people, that automatically means they can’t be gay, because you’ve got a different stereotype about what gay people are, both of which are absurd.”
Miles away, in Falls Church, Virginia, voters elected the state’s first black and openly gay person to take public office. City Councilman Lawrence Webb said “I hope my election opens the door for others to get involved in public service. It doesn’t matter if you’re gay or black or both. What matters is your dedication to building a better community and your willingness to work hard at it.”
What makes our country great is our Constitution that allows great people to rise to the level of their ability with a blind eye towards their gender, race, age and sexual orientation.
Unless, of course, they want to make the commitment of marriage. In that case, you step in and stop that playing field from being level, based on absurd stereotypes and arguments from those opposed to building a better community. And that’s just not nice.