Romney Stickers Break My Heart

I can’t tell you a lot about politics.  But, I can tell you how it feels when I’m driving around in my conservative neighborhood and I see a car with a Mitt Romney bumper sticker on it.

It hurts my feelings.

I know it shouldn’t. I know it’s just a sticker.  I know everybody has the right to a political opinion.  But, Romney campaign stickers break my heart.

I see a sticker. I try to ignore it. I look away.  I look back. It’s still there. Then, I do what I can to get a good look at the driver and when I do my heart aches because I know that they hate my brother who is gay and my son, who statistically speaking is most likely pre-homosexual.

I could be wrong about the owner of that sticker. I know that. But, it’s super-hard for me to believe that I am.  To me, you can’t support Romney and support the LGBTQ community.  You can’t like Romney and like my brother.  You can’t see a great future with Romney and see a great future for my son.  You just can’t.

On Facebook this week, one of my friends updated his status with the words of Pulitzer-winning playwright Dough Wright:

“I wish my moderate Republican friends would simply be honest. They all say they’re voting for Romney because of his economic policies (tenuous and ill-formed as they are), and that they disagree with him on gay rights. Fine. Then look me in the eye, speak with a level clear voice, and say, ‘My taxes and take-home pay mean more than your fundamental civil rights, the sanctity of your marriage, your right to visit an ailing spouse in the hospital, your dignity as a citizen of this country, your healthcare, your right to inherit, the mental welfare and emotional well-being of your youth, and your very personhood.’”

It’s like voting for George Wallace during the Civil Rights movements, and apologizing for his racism. You’re still complicit. You’re still perpetuating anti-gay legislation and cultural homophobia. You don’t get to walk away clean, because you say you “disagree” with your candidate on these issues.”

I feel like when people support Romney they are saying the same thing about my brother and son.  And, that hurts like hell.

This election, I may be voting based on a single issue, but, to me, that single issue trumps all others.  I’m obsessed with the issue. I’m obsessed with my brother and my son having equal rights and not being treated like second-class citizens.  If we can’t, as a country, successfully treat fellow citizens how we want to be treated, how we can successfully do anything?

Another friend and I were going back and forth via text about the election. He wrote: “It’s very controversial and it seems anyone who has concerns in this election other than civil rights are looked at as gay-hating scum.”

Other than civil rights?  Other than civil rights.  Other than civil rights!

It’s hard for me to comprehend how someone could vote while ignoring the issue of civil rights. My brother and son have made civil rights the most important thing to the political me. I thank them for that, because, in my mind, that’s how it should be.

When I see a person with Romney sticker on their car do I think that they are “gay-hating scum?”  Gay-hating, pretty much.  Scum, no. I see that sticker as the polar opposite of the Human Rights Campaign sticker.  I know I shouldn’t. But, I do.