I hope everyone has a fun and safe Memorial Day weekend. Please take a moment and thank the veterans, both current and past, for the service and sacrifice they have paid for the freedoms we celebrate (most of us anyway).

I was in the Army for 4 years and every Memorial Day, I can’t help but think of the love I had for the military while at the same time struggling to figure out who I was in a society that didn’t accept me. I chose a long time ago that I wanted to be an officer in the military more then I wanted to be gay so I just kept it buried deep inside, but over time that silence takes a toll on us. I’m happier now then I’ve ever been, a supportive family that accepts me and loves me and an awesome boyfriend. It isn’t this way for everyone out there and we still have a fight to fight.

On this Tuesday the California Supreme Court announces their decision on the long contested Proposition 8 and the fight over CA gay marriage. I hope that they decide to be on the right side of history.

Some may grumble that Memorial Day is about honoring the veterans and I shouldn’t be turning this into a gay rights issue. I can appreciate that but I will say that I am a veteran and I am gay, and I am unable to separate the two any more then a black person can chose to ignore their skin color in the face of discrimination. If you have served your country, I commend you, if you have not, then don’t tell me what I can and can’t do with this holiday. Those who fought before us, did so, in the hopes that we would not have to…  but we still do. Freedom and equality is not an opinion or a belief, it is an absolute, independent of religion or politics.

As a society, we either live with complete equality everyday or we live without any equality at all. There is no in-between.

A Gay Vietnam Veteran on Memorial Day

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