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Coming Out

Coming Out

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Published by Joey Wheat

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Published by: Joey Wheat on Jan 29, 2010
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05/20/2012

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1 Wheat Coming Out For most people, coming out seems to be a very straightforward act, where the latent

homosexual, having lived in secrecy and scandal for the latter part of their lives, blurts from the proverbial closet: "I'm gay." With only the stunned silence of a family, or the queer stares of friends, suddenly the closet he/she has exited appears much more inviting. However, as they will soon find, the exit means exactly "shit." Had they entertained the delusion of anonymity, or come storming out in full-fledged boa, the world would have turned its nose to scratch a passing itch, then just as quickly resumed its original position, sniffing its own pervasive odor. It is no slight to the homosexual - it was no slight to me. It was an awakening to the social fabric of not only the magnitude of the modern ego, but perhaps a conversion as well. The purpose of the act lie not in the revelation to the world of one's real self, but in the honesty of knowing who one is. I came out recently, and am still finding that the process is continuous. Were that I could wear some universal sign of homosexuality, I may be so inclined; though, the thought would equally have been inspired by some Hitler, wishing to exterminate the homosexuals, and thus branding them. For the most part, it is a fairly painless process, and I find solace in it when I break the stereotypical bedrock to hear: "You're gay?" Yes, strangely enough, not all homosexual men require a fire extinguisher to stand within mere feet of them. Maybe this too is a reason why coming out does serve some social purpose. Certainly, self-honesty is essential. One who cannot be honest with oneself, cannot in good conscience be honest with anyone. What they see is something other than reality; and for those who know them, and can see them clearly, I would say that they have the responsibility for aiding such a person, via whatever available means are present. Otherwise, I am skeptical of the perceptions of those around us. The preconceived notions, the raw bias, and the fuel of malice have made the homosexual a branded entity on everyone's favorite soap opera, or some flat character in a bestseller or movie. Perhaps the social

2 Wheat stigma is reason enough to come shouting out of the closet, "Hey, that's bull shit." But, if we cannot be honest with ourselves, or if we must be ashamed of our inclinations, then perhaps we deserve to be ridiculed and smeared by the populus as "faggots." I have not, as of this moment, experienced hatred for my person or being. I have seen its face, I have heard of its terrible deeds, but the darkest shadow at my doorway has only been minor disagreements with individuals and acquaintances over marital and religious issues. Religion can be a vile thing, filled with hatred, bigotry, and ignorance; but, these are not necessary symptoms of religion, they are products of the individual who uses religion as a deftly wielded mask. Just as any tool, religion can be used to serve dark ends; and this is where I must ask that people stay strong in their individual morality - what they inherently know to be morally right - and do not allow sharp-tongued individuals to hold sway over their good sense. We are all endowed with powers to reason, and we should plainly see when the vendetta - the final solution - masquerades itself as papal bull, or a cry from the wilderness. We are not savage-minded people - we are not irrationalists. We have reason, we have morals, but we must choose to exercise them if we are to preserve our faith. For the most part, I have sacrificed mine. It is not that I merely choose to not believe. I have given up my faith so that I may offer a greater one, a hope, to those who walk where I may walk. Faith is a luxury, a consolation, and something which can only be deserved when there are good men in this world to make this world a good one. If I am to secure anything lasting for my cause, however, I cannot do it by praying, and I cannot anguish in turmoil with my God. For me, faith is something which is yet to have a lasting incarnation, but it is something which I am willing to build. Thus, coming out serves a good - a principle of humanity worth cultivating and extolling. It can strengthen our relationships with not only others, but ourselves. Should it break bonds, however, they are bonds which are best broken. The individual cannot truly love those who do

3 Wheat not know them, and thus the self-ignorant cannot truly love themselves. Regardless of the possible pain, the trials in facing the truth, it is our responsibility to end the silence and the charade. We must accept who we are, even in the face of being rejected by those we love. If we cannot accept ourselves, who will? We have much to lose, but we have our self and our dignity to gain.

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