With Valentine’s Day upon us, many students at the College of William and Mary have romance on the brain. We can dream of falling in love, finding a soulmate and sharing our lives with another person who makes us feel more complete.
No differentiation should be made if this love is between two of the same or opposite sex. No matter who a person falls in love with, the experience of loving someone does not change. At the College, we are very fortunate to have many open-minded students, as shown in a new index that gives the College a perfect score for “Support and Institutional Commitment” to LGBTQ friendliness. Unfortunately, we are constantly reminded that this cannot be said for the world outside campus.
If each of us has the capacity to feel such strong love for another human being, shouldn’t every human being be able to demonstrate this love through what is arguably its most powerful expression, marriage?
I have witnessed homosexual and heterosexual couples that epitomize the same level of commitment to and support for one another. In creating labels, we often forget that first and foremost, we are all people who have the capacity to fall in love with another. We can be kept up nights worrying about and caring for this other person, and selflessly putting this person’s needs before our own. The sex of this person is irrelevant; love is undiscriminating.
Equality of all citizens under the law is something for which everyone should strive. This is not a political or religious issue, but rather, a matter of human dignity about which we should not be divided along party lines. An individual who reminds me of this is Rep. Maureen Walsh, R-Wa.In her address last Wednesday, she said that of all the things she misses since her husband’s death, it is “that incredible bond I had with that human being — that I really, really genuinely wish I still had.” She then articulated the profound question which we all should ask of ourselves: “How could I deny the right to have that incredible bond with another individual in life? To me it seems almost cruel.”
The recent overturning of Proposition 8 is an encouraging sign that maybe America is moving in the right direction. It is at times like these that I wish our whole country was more like the College. Here, there are countless tolerant, supportive, accepting people from a wide array of political and religious beliefs who have realized that we are all more similar than we are different, and that we all deserve the option to marry the person whom we hold most dear. After all, love is love.