Monday, February 27, 2012

That Picture

I posted this picture on Facebook today:

But I agonized over it a little. See, the thing is, I didn't want to be one of those straight people who shores up her tolerance bona fides but smiling down benevolently on gay people. It's hella patronizing, n'est-ce pas ?

On the other hand, it's a nice picture. It's nice to see people coming home from military deployments to people they love, isn't it?

But if this had been a picture of a straight couple, would I still have felt moved to throw it up on Facebook? Or did I want to post it to make sure that everyone knows I approve, when my approval (as we used to say back home) is not hardly the point.

I went for it and posted it alongside an anecdote from, I think, Andrew Sullivan about all the good wishes gay people have bestowed on straight people and how it's nice to see that going the other way now. And that is nice. But maybe still not the best reason for posting pictures like this.

In the end, I think the best reason to share pictures like this is that it's good to be happily complicit in the normalization of images like this. The more we look at pictures of gay couples kissing, the more quotidian and unremarkable it becomes. And that's good. I'd like to live in that world. I'd like to live in a world where a picture like this gets a few "awwwws" and likes from people who just know these guys and not 50,000 people who feel compelled (like me) to pronounce upon their kiss.

I'd also like to live in a world where nice young fellows like this didn't have to go and spend a few years getting shot at in Afghanistan. But I guess that's for another post.