The Flint Hills Observer
From the Top
by Penny Cullers
In the previous article that I wrote for the Observer, I talked about how I felt we as lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals are in the midst of a revolution. Shortly following the publication of that article, I woke up to a morning newscast that a group calling themselves "The Army of God" deliberately bombed an Atlanta nightclub because it was a lesbian and gay hangout. I have to admit that the feeling of horror and revulsion and shock that I felt while hearing this news was unnerving. It was difficult for me to feel like I lived in a safe, civilized world at that moment. Never before had I considered that there would be any group of people who hated us so much that they were willing to kill people frolicking in a bar . It is even more unnerving to me that the perpetrators of the crime call themselves "The Army of God" as if their self deluded righteousness gave them ALMIGHTY permission to eliminate, and terrorize not only our right to live as we please, but our right to live at all.
Since the previous article in the Observer that I wrote about our revolution, I am even more resolute in my joy that we are creating an orderly world where we no longer have to hide in shadows. Since the bombing of the nightclub I am certain now that we must continue to shout from rooftop after rooftop that every human being has the right to exist as we were created, whether that is as a homosexual, a bisexual, a transgendered person, or (god-forbid) a heterosexual. The bombing of the nightclub is proof that we must stand strong in loving ourselves and respecting all identities.
"The army of god" is a violent offshoot of an anti-gay movement that is building up to backlash at our revolution of self identity. The less violent elements of the anti-gay world generally use terrorist language to try to keep us from self actualization, but the overlying philosophy of all anti-gay groups contains the common denominator that attempts to repeal the rights of individuals to express their own standard of moral and sexual choices. It is frightening to me that such a philosophy has been created not for the betterment of humanity, but simply to stamp a rigid and backward thinking code on the entire human race in order to justify a narrow manner of living.
I do believe that the whole anti-gay movement, violent and violent-language factions all included, should consider themselves lucky that GOD would be on their side, that a God who created such diversity in nature and gave human beings free will would wish for the human child to constipate itself with xenophobia and would kill one another in order to glorify this constipation. Those who taut the bible as sanctification for hating us have perhaps forgotten that their a-number-one soldier was apt to ask them not to judge others and to love others as they wish to be loved. Twisted as the philosophy may be, the "Army of God" is out there in all its violent putridity. The soldiers of it and of other less violent factions are lining up in their little rows in order to impose the uniformity of heterosexual standards on everyone who is or isn't heterosexual by nature and by choice.
I for one have too much at stake to allow the army to tramp on me and those in my lifestyle preference. Faced with the possibility of an army of hateful heterosexuals marching towards me, bombs and concealed weapons in hand, I must ask myself "Is this a revolution or is it a war?" I do know that in trying to discover the nature of my identity I have harmed no one. The revolution I experience comes from within. Others like me are finding the courage to do the same soul searching. So many of us have discovered our personal sexual nature that we have created a movement. This movement only seeks to empower the individual, not to harm anyone. Ours is a revolution of the sexual soul. How has it become a war? I don't want to carry weapons when I go to a nightclub to dance and frolic with friends. I don't want to fight the Army of God. I've got better things to do like kiss my girlfriend. But dammit, I have this to say: if the line is being drawn in the sand by the Army of God, I will let no one cross into my territory of self discovery. I will fight to the last ABBA song in order to protect my vision of self discovery. I will fight to the last Patsy Cline croon at the dance floor of the nearest gay bar before I let the army of god take away the vision of sexual discovery that is pulsating through the human race.
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