[oasis]
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Leslie McCluskey

March 1998

Seeing as how this is my first article, I guess I should tell you how I came to the conclusion that I wanted to write for Oasis. Well, I've been reading and realize that a lot of these writers have some very good ideas, as well as strong feelings. Thinking about how I stand on gay issues made me realize that maybe I should show the gay community that not all straight people are so straight. I guess maybe the better slogan is, "Straight but not narrow." I love my gay friends just as much as, if not more than, my straight friends. Just because society generally feels that you are wrong and unbiased in your feelings does not mean that it is at all true. I am very sure about my sexuality and I don't like it when people say to me, "Leslie, you'd make a good bisexual." Trust me, if that is what I was it wouldn't be a problem. The fact is that I know what I like.

So why do people tell you that you're wrong when you know that you are right? There are lots of things to blame for this. Many are brought up to believe that homosexuality is wrong, period. If you ask one of these people why they think you are wrong for what you believe he/she probably won't have a very good answer. Understandable, right? Then there are the church-going hypocrites. Love your neighbor... ummm, right. It should be more like, "Love your neighbor if he/she is completely morally upright in your eyes." It's obvious that I think this is wrong. If God says "Love your neighbor," then that's what you should do. If God says, "Thou shalt not kill," then you shouldn't kill. Is that simple enough? I guess some people don't think so, but I don't want to get to far into theologies.

It is interesting to me how closely knit the gay community is. I must be lucky or something, but an area very close to my hometown is a sort of "gay center." This is where we find "Poodle Beach" and the infamous Baltimore Ave. Here it is easy to find men and women that will accept you for who you are and not who you love. Sure, there are plenty of people that disagree with homosexuality but you are not forced to put up with them. (Hmmm, looks like the turning of the tides...)

I am a member of the regional PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) group. I like the weekly youth meetings. It is refreshing to see this group of very special people gather, even if it is for no other reason than to gossip. There are no secrets in the gay community. I mean, one person was told that my lesbian friend and I were cousins and, by the next week, the entire group knew! We just got those very fun "all in the family" kinds of comments.

So what do you think of me now? I think it's nice to be able to appreciate all the colors in the rainbow and maintain my own identity. I just want everyone to know that I'm supporting them to the fullest extent of my capabilities. You may direct any questions/comments to me at wakeup@udel.edu.

Thanks!

Leslie


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