By Jancel Moreno
HAVANA TIMES – Cuba is at an important crossroads right now, there’s no doubt about that. The new Constitution is putting forward a social change that will completely change how we see today’s society.
Homosexuality, like other human behaviors, forms part of a bigger issue, human sexuality. It’s impossible to focus on healthy sexual relationships between men and women, no matter how much we do this, because there are lots of behaviors in heterosexual relationships that a lot of people deem to be inappropriate.
Everyone should be free to live as they wish, although I understand that sometimes this freedom affects other people who have nothing to do with them. There are, and there will be legal regulations in place to prevent these situations from arising, which uphold morals, ethics and social respect.
Just like degrading a person because of their skin color or ethnic origin is punishable, so should calling a homosexual a “sick person”, and fortunately it will be soon enough.
Limiting the LGBTI community to adjectives such as “promiscuous”, “crazy”, “prostitutes”, “degenerates”, and even drawing a connection between them and pedophilia or zoophilia is ridiculous, in my opinion. While I sometimes respect and understand people who think like this, I don’t fall in love with children, or dogs, I fall in love with a man. They are very different behaviors and have nothing to do with each other.
Plus, thinking that gays and lesbians want everyone to be LGBTI is wrong. Newsflash, just like the most heterosexual man on Earth doesn’t like all women, a gay man doesn’t like all men either; and yes, maybe some of us do think it would be fun if everyone was gay or a lesbian (or better yet, bisexual), but we don’t all think like that.
Like I’ve said before, labeling homosexuals as “promiscuous” is wrong. It’s true that many homosexuals do act somewhat promiscuously, but I repeat again, not all of us. Plus, homosexuals aren’t the only ones being promiscuous. What can you expect from a society where a man sleeping with lots of women is a wild horse or an alpha-male, yet a woman sleeping with a lot of men is easy, a prostitute? What are we gays left with, then?
However, I’m not denying the fact that some attitudes of the LGBTI community are quite frankly embarrassing and should be socially rejected on more than one occasion; for example, the gay man or lesbian woman who thinks that somebody is only approaching them because they want sex is wrong and distances us from what we are defending, unfortunately.
Same-sex marriage is a very controversial subject. There are hundreds of arguments against and another hundred in favor. I’ve had the opportunity to read through some of them and the truth is that many of them seem inconclusive and are full of prejudice and fantasies that have no grounds in reality.
It’s true that the amendment to the Cuban Consitution regarding same-sex marriage has more of a political motive as the Government is trying to come off modern, progressive and inclusive when those of us living here on the island know that this isn’t the case. However, as members of the LGBTI community, we need to take advantage of the opportunity we’ve been given and create a dialogue with society, this isn’t the time to launch a pity campaign.
It’s about demanding the opportunity and right for us to stand before an altar and say “Yes, I do”, if we want to. To the man or woman you love. More than a ceremony, marriage is sharing legal obligations with that other person, it’s having a legal right over assets acquired by the couple, rights to make health-related and legal decisions like every other married couple does.
There are people who ask whether the LGBTI community is in favor of pedophilia, zoophilia and other sexual behaviors.
As an LGBTI activist, I believe in every human being’s freedom as long as it doesn’t harm another being’s own freedoms; in the case of pedophilia, if it doesn’t harm the minor, if the family accept it and everything works out fine, why not? If a man or a woman are sexually attracted to an animal and, I repeat, don’t harm that animal, why not? I understand that this is very a complex issue, but the solution is very easy… The world is changing, people are changing and as a result, societies are changing. It’s not a question about accepting everything, but about learning to live with whatever is “different” and especially about respecting others so we too can be respected.
Not everybody has to accept homosexuality or any other sexual behavior. We can’t be that utopian. Religions have the right to not accept homosexuals among their members, but they do not have the right to judge anyone, I believe they themselves say that this is only God’s job.
In short, a time for debate and reflection is on the horizon here in Cuba and we shouldn’t be imposing anything, we need to reach an agreement thinking about our own futures and the futures of our children. We have to think about finding solutions to the thing that causes us so much harm: intolerance.
And to remember that whoever only sees things in blue, misses out on all the other colors.