Cutest safety image ever!
Don’t worry, I’m not dredging up a specific topic or trying to polarize anyone. Rather, I want to ask you a question. Is there a political topic where you once held a strong, line-in-the-sand position on but later did a complete 180 on?
For me it was same-sex marriage. That might seem weird since I’m a gay man, but it was more of a “I don’t need the government’s permission” thing than anything else. Truth is, I never ever once believed I’d see gay marriage be an actual thing. I was in high school in Colorado when Amendment 2 passed. I remember having leaflets left on my car by Colorado for Family Values that had the most disgusting dehumanizing things in them about us, especially about what we would do to children. I knew exactly what everyone thought of me as a person when it passed. So it’s really easy to be all “I don’t even care, whatevs” if you know there’s no chance you’ll ever be allowed to participate.
Fast forward to 2008. I met my partner, and we moved in together. For the first time in my life I had someone who I really loved and wanted to spend my life with. I’d had flings, but never anything serious because why pursue a relationship when you’d never be allowed to be married? Well, I got a huge wake-up call when he had to go to the emergency room. I had no idea what was wrong with him, but I was panicking. What if they won’t let me go back there with him? They were entirely within their rights to deny me any access to see him or prevent me from acting on his behalf because we had no relationship under the law. I want to give huge thanks to the Medical Center of Aurora, because everyone there has always treated me like I was his spouse. I was allowed to be with him the whole time. It turned out to be a kidney stone. Since then he’s had to go back a couple times for the same thing and each time they treated us just like everyone else, but every time I still worried that someone would prevent me from being there. And they absolutely could have.
Some time after that, President Obama publicly stated that he was in favor of gay marriage. I remember the day, because I had been pressed into service as a delivery driver and was listening to the radio when it happened. At first I thought no big deal, he should have come out for it sooner, etc. But then about 10 minutes later, right as I pulled up to a stop, I broke down crying. This was the first time a sitting President ever said that I deserved equal treatment. Sure, Ford came out in favor of it later in his life, but this was the first sitting President to do so. I know lots of people don’t like him, but I will always be grateful for that. Then the Colorado law banning same-sex marriage got overturned. I knew that the Supreme Court would be reviewing the case in June. I kind of rushed my partner into going to the clerk to get a marriage license, and surprised the hell out of my mother and my mother-in-law in the process. We’ve never had a wedding, and that kind of sucks... but I wanted to make sure we had protection under the law, hoping that even if the Supreme Court overruled Obergefell that our license would remain intact. It ended up that they ruled in favor of same-sex marriage, so our license is good no matter what. And now, more people support same-sex marriage than in any other time.
At times I still have trouble believing it ever happened. The sudden shift toward acceptance was completely stunning.
I know, it’s a very self-serving issue to have a change of heart on, but I really did believe it wasn’t important at one time in my life.
So, come and tell us all why you changed your mind on whatever subject you changed your mind on. And to all...keep an open mind, even if someone shifted to a position to something you disagree with.