Gay day on Capitol Hill
The National Equality March was here! Signs, flags, buttons, body paint and wild attire highlighted the landscape of people. There were members of the LGBT community and our allies as far as I could see. I looked to my right and saw actor Chad Allen pointing up to the sky. He was pointing at what some were calling a sign of our just purpose - a rainbow appearing in the clouds. I started snapping photos so I could document that it actually happened. In that moment, surrounded by thousands of other like-minded people, I felt so proud to be an out gay man. I felt proud to be standing up and demanding equal rights for myself and my gay brothers and sisters.
The overflowing energy of the crowd made me anxious to get the march started. I was even eager to smile happily at any protesters popping up along the way. But instead of protesters, the route was filled with supporters and well wishers. It was amazing. We did come across three men who were attempting to save our souls, but the large crowd diminished their shouts.
Upon arriving at the Capitol, we soon began to get a greater perspective on how many people were marching. The lawn in front of the Capitol was nearly filled, and we heard that the line of marchers stretched back about 15 blocks. We listened eagerly to speaker after speaker demanding equality for the LGBT community. It was emotionally uplifting and physically energizing. The sound of the massive crowd responding to remarks echoed across Capitol Hill. I had to wonder, though, what all of these people would do once they returned home.
Yes, we marched and rallied. We demonstrated that even though we sometimes disagree about how best to accomplish our goals, we can come together collectively to demand our equality. But what are all of my fellow marchers going to do to help in that fight? Yes, many of them are already actively involved. But what about those sitting back waiting for President Obama to just do it all for them? It’s my hope that many will realize that our equality won’t come if we sit back and yell for the President to just wave his pen and make it happen. It’s hard for me to respect the comments about President Obama not taking enough action when they are made by people who are doing nothing themselves. Standing up for your rights can’t stop just because the march is over. Barney Frank’s comments regarding the march have some validity. The real chance to gain our equality depends on what we all do in our own communities. Before you challenge President Obama, have a conversation with your representatives in Congress. President Obama is making it a matter of conversation. Are you? Take personal responsibility and keep demanding your rights.