Be the Change
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We stand in solidarity with the African American community for social justice.
West Covina Campus Finalist
Although I’m not all that well with essays, I thought I’d give it a try. I’ll be talking about Equality and Human Rights. With myself being a victim of hate crimes and discrimination for being openly gay, throughout my life I was scared of being who I was because I wasn’t sure of who I was at the time; I was confused. For about 13 years I was like that, until I finally figured out what I wanted. I was happy and content on being gay, but later on in life I was bullied for it and teased. I never thought how someone could hate another person for being different. So as I went on with my life, I hid my sexual orientation from everyone, during school, out of school, I was afraid of being targeted by people. I’d always see on the news of people hurting and just bringing people like me down. I’ve been through a lot, and I’m sure lots of other people have as well.
So, with all of that said, I’ve always wanted to help people like me and just make a difference in other’s lives, I know it’ll be a lot of work, but I will never give up. I want equality not only for myself, but for everyone around me. I’ve lost so many friends throughout my life because of who I was, it hurt so much to see those people close to you just disappear. Even to this day I still receive hateful messages. I just want society to open its eyes and see that we’re all not that bad.
Human Rights plays a role in everyone’s life, but not everyone realizes it. It’s involved in every comment you make that includes someone different. Every near discriminatory “joke” you say. It affects people, even if it doesn’t affect you. Human rights means being able to hold hands with the person you love, work where you’re qualified to work, without your skin color or sexual orientation being the reason you can’t; it means having the right to be human, making choices and mistakes. Every day I hear comments being made about this being “gay” and other comments about that being “retarded.” There are an estimated 1,019,729 words in the English language. What I don’t understand is why these words are chosen to describe something meager or something that lacks quality.
Society has gotten to the point where people think it doesn’t matter what they say, that they think their comments and hate don’t affect other people. Humans are often hurtful towards each other, but I believe we all were born with the innate compassion and love. These days, I see parents showing their kids what to think instead of how to think. I see people not being able to marry someone they love because they are the same gender, even though it is acceptable to marry someone then divorce the next day. People say gays aren’t socially acceptable, but the thing is, slavery was once the norm. So what does that say about our community? I hear and see this type of thing every day; people being ignorant and neglecting the notion that all humans are equal. I wish I didn’t see bias and prejudice, but I do. I often witness people, young and old, ignoring the fact that we’re the same. Humans aren’t born racist, homophobic or sexist. We were born equal.
So why is it that everyone is bent on believing that one’s life is less important than another? Why is it that a person high up in society can get away with something other people can’t? How is that equal? Why is one religion “correct” while a different one is frowned upon? What gives other people the right to decide who I want to be and what I want to do with my life? I don’t believe in God, and I’m constantly being told that I’m locked out of Heaven for it. But who knows what happens after we’re done here? That’s right, no one. So I’m basically being held back by people who honestly don’t know any more than I do about it. The right to be who we’re destined to be belongs to everyone, not just people who are favored or socially acceptable. I can look around and see a flawed humanity. My one hope is to see that change. Because we may be different on the outside, but we are all human. Nothing else should define us. Not race, sex, or sexual orientation. I just want my voice and the voices of others to be heard. Stop the silence.