The comparison between gay rights and the rights of African-Americans has been made in recent years. Some even say that they are one in the same. That comparison is wildly inaccurate. I believe that the struggle for rights in gay community does mirror the plight of African-Americans to a certain extent. That is where the comparisons end.
Former Republican National Committee (RNC) chairman Michael Steele was on MSNBC on Tuesday when he said that he did not appreciate the comparison between laws banning interracial marriage to laws that prevent gay couples from marrying. Steele was engaged in an intense debate about the question with former Lt. Dan Choi, an LGBT activist.
“First off, let’s just be very clear,” “There are a significant number of African Americans, myself included, who do no appreciate that particular equation. OK? Because when you walk into a room, I don’t know if you are gay or not, but when I walk into a room, you know I’m black. And whatever racial feelings you have about African Americans, about black people, that are something that is visceral, it comes out. I don’t know [you are gay] until later on, maybe you tell me or some other way. So, don’t sit there and make that comparison. Don’t make that analogy.” Steele said.
Choi shot back by posing the following question to Steele: “Since I fought for the entire of America, every state, don’t you believe that my love is just as equal as your love? When I come back from Iraq, I shouldn’t go to one state where my love is inferior to yours and another state where I wouldn’t be able to say goodbye to my husband or to my lover?”
I want to thank Lt.Choi for his service to our country. I do believe that all Americans deserve to be treated equally including gay people. But to say that African-Americans rights and gay rights are the same is extremely far-fetched. History can tell you otherwise. Just being out in public can tell you that. The comparison between the rights of interracial couples and gay couples is an argument than can made. But when race is involved the same argument cannot be made.