It’s official: as of today gay and lesbian couples can get legally married in every county in the State of Florida. And I say, it’s about damned time.
Listen, I was born and raised in west central Florida. I went to college at University of Florida, and law school at FSU in Tallahassee. Back then if you were gay you didn’t tell anyone, or maybe you confided in a few friends and family members, but that was it. You could even get fired from your job if people learned you were gay. Looking back, that seems ridiculous, but I can tell you there are still many people who wish things hadn’t changed, and to them I say, “Go stew in your bigotry for a bit. Then wake up and smell the coffee. You lost this battle, as well you should have. ”
It’s a beautiful day here in central Florida. The sun is shining, the temperature’s around 75 degrees F, and the air is still, a perfect day for cycling. After lunch, I’ll ride my Trek hybrid bike over to a residental community a mile from here. It’s an island within itself, with very little traffic. And I’ll ride fourteen miles on the asphalt. It’s a great workout, and it gives me plenty of time to think, since it takes a little over an hour to complete the circuit.
My boyfriend’s still out of state right now, so I will spend most of the day by myself. I’ll work on my novel-in-progress and maybe do a little yard work as well. The day is so pretty, I may read outside on our fenced-in patio too. I will savor this moment in Florida history, when gay and lesbian people have finally become equal to everyone else in the eyes of the law.
I remember when I came out to all my friends and family, in 1976. It was scary, but exhilarating at the same time. I could finally be myself, and live openly with my boyfriend as a couple. I never once regretted my decision. I can honestly say that living my life as an openly gay man is my proudest achievement.
Have a great Tuesday, everyone.