Marcia’s Law – Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow
“Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day”
It must have been very difficult to be a woman in 1912. They could not own property, yet they were considered property when married. They were certainly not allowed to vote. So, they had little control over their own destiny. Fortunately, the Suffrage Movement had a significant impact on women’s roles in society. In 1920, the 19th Amendment finally passed, granting women the right to vote. They no longer had to wait for another tomorrow to “creep in this petty pace from day to day.” Tomorrow had finally come.
My grandmother was one of those early voters. Even though she’d been told for years that she didn’t have the intelligence to vote, she did just that as soon as she had the right. She thought, as many American women did, that there was, finally, equality in this country.
And, she lived to witness a gradual change in how women were regarded by society. They became educated. They worked; not merely as domestic servants, but in professional positions. They were independent, tax-paying, voting members of this country. Today, most women would go ballistic if their rights were denied.
But, many still are. If you are a lesbian in this country or if you are bi-sexual, gay, transgendered or queer, you are a second class citizen. My grandmother would be appalled to learn that, after all these years, there is still a huge disparity in this country. If you’re straight, you’re counted. If you’re not, you’re screwed.
It is true that almost 100 years after women were granted the right to vote, an LGBTQ person can step into a polling place and cast a ballot – Wait, that’s not entirely true either. In certain states you must hold a state-approved ID. For those in transition or for transgendered individuals it is very difficult to verify their identity. And, in many states, LGBTQ individuals can be discriminated against in employment, housing, and marriage.
As a mother, I find this difficult to accept and harder still to explain. How can one of my children have full protection under the law and the other be discriminated against? How do I rationalize this treatment? Quite simply; there is no justification for this. It is unacceptable. And, the more I think about it, the angrier I become. This form of bigotry, prejudice and legal discrimination has to end!
As Americans, I believe it is incumbent upon us that, at every opportunity, we expand our concept of freedom. In the not-so-distant past, women, blacks, and other minorities struggled, fought, and died for equal rights. It didn’t come easily, and it certainly didn’t come cheap. But, we are better for these changes. And we live with these changes because others had the courage to stand up against adversity and fight for their inalienable rights. We have seen that the dire predictions of moral degeneration and societal disintegration have simply not materialized. If we have learned anything from the struggles of our past history, it is that the naysayers, the doomsayers, and the haters have been proven wrong every time.
My grandmother brought me into the voting booth and showed me how to mark my ballot. She was a woman who believed wholeheartedly in the American system of justice, and she was extremely proud to be an American. Having faced the challenges of her generation, she would be outraged to learn that her great grandson is discriminated against simply because of his sexual orientation. She too would have shouted for all to hear that discrimination in any form is WRONG.
Now, in 2012, as a mother, as a woman, as a citizen of this country, I call for an end to laws that are discriminatory. They diminish us as human beings. They trivialize us as a nation. And, they are as archaic and as outlandish as denying women the right to vote.
We can’t wait for another tomorrow to come creeping in…we must have equality today.
…And I’m just a mom who loves her son…
Category: The Qu