Monday, June 29, 2015

Observations and Reflections on #LoveWins

I think we can all agree how remarkably fast the country has moved to accepting same sex marriage.  It feels unprecedented.

In reflecting over the weekend, I had a few comments that I wanted to share. 

Would #Love your input.

How Powerful Social Technologies Are
The change may have been inevitable, however, to me, the speed of the change is a further sign of the global impact that connective technologies (social networks and mobile phones) are having on every aspect of life.

Most of the time, I focus on the impact of businesses, but this is another example along with Arab Spring, Hong Kong protests, and more of what happens when people can directly connect with each other at basically zero cost.

I highly doubt we would have seen this movement grow as far or as wide in a pre-Facebook/Twitter/blog era.

The Marketing of #LoveWins
Simply’s brilliant. I mean, how can you be for “Love Losing?” And who hates rainbows?

The combination of a position that is solidly defensible and a “visual hammer” that resonates with everybody--Those two things, I suspect, were key levers in bringing the “non-committed” center to the side of the Gay Rights movement.

There’s probably a much longer post here, but the hashtag and the imagery were masterful.

It is ironic that the rainbow itself plays an important role in the rebirth of the world following the Biblical Noah story.

Large Brands Joining In
It was fascinating to see the number of large companies that turned their logos to rainbows.  I certainly don’t recall this for any other type of movement (certainly not one that polarized many—i.e. no one is against the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge).

What’s Next for Gay Rights?
I found myself wondering about that.

Obviously, there’s plenty of work to do in terms of employment discrimination, etc., but we’re clearly past the “tipping point” of large scale societal acceptance. 

Do “Pride” parades/weeks become a thing of a past at some point? 

If being gay is as normal as being hetero, do you have need to celebrate the “pride” in otherness or will it fade away as something that is unique?

Just wondering.

Turn the Eye to International
If there is a place to focus the energy and momentum of Gay Rights, I hope it is in the international sphere.  On the same day that the ruling came down from the Supreme Court, there were attacks on 3 continents by radical Islamists. They—and countries such as Oman, Saudi Arabia, Iran—not only disapprove of homosexuals, they kill them.

Even the most virulent anti-gay marriage person in the US doesn’t advocate for public beheadings.

I hope the considerable energy will be focused on making those societies more open and tolerant.  They need it.

How does this impact religious institutions?
First amendment notwithstanding, I wonder what impact all of this will have on churches, synagogues, and mosques (plus others) where traditionally homosexuality is not consistent with their worldview.

While the government may not do anything to infringe, will people be castigated if they are members of a religious institution that, for example, denies membership to a married gay couple because it is inconsistent with their beliefs?

I certainly wouldn’t want all Catholics or Orthodox Jews to be labeled as bigots.

Is the Supreme Court’s ruling not even debatable? An Ironic Hint of Intolerance
It’s one thing to be pro-Gay Rights/marriage.

It’s another thing to speculate as to whether it is the right of the Supreme Court to make this decision (versus allowing it to be decided by the states).

For example, here’s an interesting video.

Judging from my Facebook/Twitter feed, it seems that everyone I know is 100% in favor of the ruling.

What I can’t tell is if that’s the case or if those who have concerns (either social or legal) are too afraid to state them.

Even leaving aside those with social concerns and just focusing on those with legal/constitutional concerns, I suspect that people don’t want to be labeled as “bigots,” “haters,” or “intolerant” for questioning if the Court overreached.

There is a great irony in being labeled intolerant for even asking the question.

At the far reaches of this, I was particularly appalled by one person in my feed, who said, “if you disagree with this ruling, de-friend me now,” without leaving open any reason for WHY someone might disagree.

And then, from a late 20-something part-time actor who basically said that Chief Justice John Roberts is an idiot when it comes to Constitutional Law.

It struck me as the height of arrogance and hubris.

The last thing we need is for the newly empowered to forget the feeling of oppression and begin to persecute those who disagree with them, when the disagreement stems from a position of intellectual curiosity and debate.

It’s obviously one of those watershed moments in US history which will have ramifications for years to come.

Curious about your reaction.
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