DO YOU COPY?: Marriage equality is a step, not a leap
Daniel Brount is a senior creative writing major and writes ‘Do You Copy?’ for the Daily News. His views do not necessarily agree with those of the newspaper. Write to Daniel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
When the Supreme Court ruled in favor of marriage equality on Friday, supporters of the decision ignited with celebration.
There were people using #LoveWins, and even people rushing to wed. I even saw some people posting that the Human Rights Campaign needed to find something new to fight for.
But marriage equality is a step not a leap, and the fight is not over.
In the push for LGBTQ equality, there are numerous battles being fought, despite the public’s failure to eye them as carefully as it did marriage equality.
According to the National LGBTQ task force, 10 transgender women have been murdered this year. The majority of these victims were women of color. In January and February, these murders occurred at a rate of one per week. In 2013, the Anti-Violence Project found that 67 percent of anti-LGBTQ homicides were transgender women.
Only 22 states have laws against sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace, and only 19 have laws against gender identity discrimination.
A 2014 study by the National LGBTQ task force found that of the 1.7 million youth who are homeless each year, 20-40 percent identify as LGBTQ.
In 47 states, conversion therapy, which attempts to change someone's sexual orientation, is still legal for minors.
And these are just a small selection of the issues in the LGBTQ community. The latest issues of racial discrimination are widespread, as evidenced by the nine deaths in a shooting at a church in Charleston and the fact that six predominantly black southern churches burned in just one week.
One glimpse at the news, one look through social media, one Google search, one conversation — you’ll find a host of equality issues still alive and well.
Marriage equality is just one movement that the United States has finally caught up with. We aren’t moving forward with equality; we’re scraping at the heels of a movement that has progressed too quickly for a nation that was founded on ideals of equality, rights, liberty, opportunity and democracy.
I am happy that same-sex marriage can now simply be called marriage in the U.S. I am happy that the U.S. has finally taken this step. I am happy that we can put this fight behind us.
But there are still many fights left.
People are left to fear violence and hate crimes. People are left to fear losing their already unstable homes and jobs. People are left to fear being reprimanded for being who they are.
So many people in and out of the LGBTQ community are left in fear.
We can and we should celebrate, but we must remember that there is still work to be done.