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Mike S.

March 2001

Would Ya Believe It?

I was just looking at my Oasis folder, where I keep all my past articles as well as work on new ones, and I've noticed that this is my twelfth consecutive article! Has it really been a year since I came out to the internet world through my writings on Oasis? It sure doesn't seem like it. For this month's article, I'm going to just let you know where I am in life right now, how I think I've changed, how I'm going to change (and when), and just a bunch of other miscellaneous biographical information. Where Do I Stand?

Gracious! Where to start? I can't say that I've suffered any major traumas over the past year, which is a good thing. Yes, I did find out that I'm human just like the rest of mankind (there were times where I gave into temptation), and just as easily as I gave in, I got over it. I've dealt with the pains of infatuation with someone, and got over that just rather recently. I made the jump from being a high school junior to a senior, and soon, I'll be making the jump to Graduation Day. To be perfectly honest, I'm scared to death. I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but this time, it's with more urgency and more fear. It's gonna be a lot of fun, don't get me wrong, but don't forget that I've been a mamma's boy all my life, and it's going to be hard for the both of us to part when I move off to college.

I've slipped. Grades are starting to be average instead of above average. Sure, I'm still as sharp as a tack, I'm bright, and fairly well educated--I'm just not a studious person anymore. School gets in the way of life, the way I see it now. I'm not learning much of anything that'll help me reach my life goals. The fact is, I want to be a professional musician, and honestly, school isn't helping me reach that goal. I should be at home practicing 8 hours a day, not learning about the economy, history, or math. Yes, those things are important, but they aren't going to put food on the table--learning how to get around the bridge of "Cherokee" in a hip, fresh manner will. Being able to sight-read any piece of music will. Not knowing about Chester Arthur's brain hemorrhage after he left the Oval Office. Not knowing what happens to the tangent graph if you throw in a constant somewhere in the original equation. But I need my diploma and to get into a good school, so that's the only reason I'm in school right now.

I don't attend church anymore. The one church that I really rather liked turned out to think that homosexuality is a sin (which it isn't as most every self-respecting gay person knows, provided they believe in God), and they had to mention that in a service, so that was pretty much why I stopped going. Since this issue is one of the central things in my life, I've pretty much dismissed anything that goes against it, including my religion that I was baptized as: Catholicism. So yeah, that's where I stand on the ol' religion factor. I'm pretty pissed off at most organized religions not because of the gay thing, but just because of how they are in general. I'm not sure if I'll ever find a spiritual home or not, but that's all right, because I can make due without. It'd be nice to have people to talk with about it and stuff, but I don't see it as an essential thing in my life right now.

Internet relationships are still dumb, I think. For me they always have been, but I can totally see how a couple could get involved over the Internet. There's just way too many things wrong with the medium and so many limitations that it presents that pursuing one would seem totally worthless to me. Friends are cool, because they don't require as much energy as romantic relationships, but the latter is just...blah.

Abortion. All right, here we go. I just want to express my frustration at this whole thing. It makes so much sense to me as to what the solution should be, but to others, well...that's why they're called opinions: everybody has 'em. Mine is this: it should be allowed in cases of rape, incest, or other extenuating circumstances, but if a girl happens to get pregnant, I feel that it's her moral obligation to see that pregnancy through and the resulting child through until it is grown. There are those that say that a woman has a right to choose, and I implicitly agree, but I feel that when she has that right is a little different. I'm of the belief that once she's decided to have sex, she's made that choice: nowadays, you have to be a total blockhead to not know that having heterosexual sex can result in pregnancy, and with that being said, it can only be assumed that women would know that she's putting herself at risk. Am I wrong here? Well enough about that; I'm not a girl nor will I have children with one, so this issue isn't too important to me--I say this because I just felt like tackling a hot-button issue.

People are as happy as they wish to be. Plain and simple. I was talking to a few friends over the Internet about their Valentine's Day (it's February 14th as I write this section), and I got lots of negative responses to my query. Keep in mind, most of these people are gay--that being said, I've noticed that many more gay people seem to have a bad V-Day than straight people in general. I can totally relate and sympathize with those whose day was a bad one, but c'mon people! Just because you don't have someone to cuddle with or whatever doesn't mean you don't have friends that you can spend time with, family that you can love, or even yourself! For heaven's sake, don't forget about loving yourself: if you aren't good to anybody be good to yourself because you're going to have to live with yourself and the choices that you made for the rest of your life.

Chat rooms are fun. Sure, there can be crazy people in there, and yes, there always seem to be at least one pedophile in the room, but they sure are a hoot to just go into and talk to people. They shouldn't take the place of real friends and stuff of course, but semi-frequently is cool. Great place to meet people and just talk the night away (provided you don't have anything to do). And it's true, you CAN meet some people that aren't shallow and that aren't just looking to cyber...honest!

Isn't our new president just a great guy? When he gets idiots like Gale Norton and John Ashcroft in positions like Secretary of the Interior and Attorney General, (dis)respectively, it totally reflects the way that he feels towards people such as yourselves and I. There are some that say, "Well if that's the only issue that you look at, then you're a pretty closed-minded, shallow person." What do I tell them? Just put yourself in my shoes--what if you could be fired from your job for having a heterosexual boy or girlfriend? What if you got beat up or even killed as a result of being straight and there weren't any laws protecting you from such vicious hate crimes? These laws that we're trying to get passed aren't just for us; they're for everybody! Face it, Shrub has been a white, straight, Christian, well-off male all his life. Do you think he ever faced any sort of discrimination in his entire life based on his race, religion, or sexual preference? Do you think he ever has been made fun of, being called faggot, queer, or any other sorts of anti-gay names? Or how about being called any sort of racial slur, or being at the butt of a racial-based joke? I would bet a lot that the answer is, "He's never faced anything like that in his entire sheltered life." While I don't agree with it, I can understand why he wouldn't be so quick to pass hate-crime and other civil rights laws/acts. Why? Because these issues don't affect him.

As much as I love them, animals have more rights and protection than gay people do. In a nation that was supposed to founded as one to escape persecution, here we continue to have it within our own borders. Something that Shrub maintains is that we're looking for special rights as non-heterosexuals and that we're asking him to support us. Golly, nothing could be further from the truth! If the non-heterosexual community asked for special rights and privileges, I would be the first one to oppose it, because I'm against favoritism and discrimination of any kind, but all that we're asking is to be treated equally and fairly, just like the rest of the nation. I don't see this as any sort of favoritism by any stretch of the imagination. These next four years, in my honest opinion, are going to be way too slow as far as civil rights are concerned. With Shrub at the helm, the issues that concern you and I and many others will be somewhat pushed to the backburner by our new president, and it's up to all of us to make sure that as Americans, ALL our voices are heard equally!

Going Out

I've started to tell more and more people about me now, and they've all taken it rather well. I told my friend, Female J., and she was totally cool about it. These things don't bother her at all, and I knew that, so that's why I thought that I should tell her. Plus, we're good friends and I wanted her to see the real me now that we're such good friends.

I told my coworker (Male J.) about me just fairly recently. He has totally shattered all previous stereotypes that I had about jocks in general (I know, stereotypes are HORRIBLE, but when you've heard nothing but bad things about gays coming from their mouths, it's hard not to be a little apprehensive about these kinds of things). Anyways, I had decided to tell him because he told me something rather touching: he said that when his friends make fun of me (I'm a teeny bit flamboyant), he just tells them that I'm a good guy and a real cool guy to work with and they pretty much stop teasing me. Keep in mind, these are high school kids and not adults, if that clears up things a little bit. So anyhow, I totally love Male J. and Female J., and I have absolutely no regrets that I told them--it's made us closer, as well.

Who knows who I'll tell next? It just depends on who it is, how they are, and all that good stuff like trust, integrity, etc. etc. The path to coming out is coming to an end for me, and I'm getting to the point now where I'm going to be able to be totally honest with everybody, including myself, about who I am. When that day comes, I'll be there with bells on. Indeed, that day isn't too far down the road...I'm ready for the new things that lie ahead for me, for I know they'll only strengthen me as a person. On the road to self-acceptance, I've made friends and I've figured out who might not be my friends any longer, but in the end, I'll know that it's all for the better and I'll be a happier person as a result of what I went through in these early years of my life.

God Bless,

Mike

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Mike is an 18 year old, semi-closeted individual living with his mom and stepdad. He is interested in music, computers, music, reading, music, writing, writing music, listening to music, composing music, arranging music, and other music related things. Mike enjoys feedback and would like to hear from you, and can be reached via ICQ: #56413145 or by E-Mail: Mike_17@gay.com


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