My home state made an embarrassing turn at a sociopolitical crossroad this week. Gay marriage was banned. Again. But this time it’s legit, with a constitutional amendment to back it — the kind of finality that makes a very bold statement about how the citizens feel. And though I’m disappointed and even surprised with the results (yes, some of us had hopes for a state in the middle of the Bible Belt), let’s be real — it’ll be repealed in the next 20 years when the rest of our generation starts to care a bit more.
After all, gay marriage is not as much of a party divide as it used to be.
North Carolina, a once traditionally solid south red state, has been straddling the border of moderation for several years now, turning blue in the 2008 Presidential Election for the first time since Jimmy Carter was elected. It’ll also host the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte later this year.
The land of the pine is teeming with progression, but there’s one thing holding us back: Old people. And we have a lot of them. Yes, there are other groups holding us back, as with any state — like dogmatic nuts on both sides of the political spectrum — but at least they keep us balanced. They make moderation and reason look sexy for the rest of us.
Oldies on the other hand just don’t get it, and who can blame them? You can’t teach an old dog new tricks. They’ve long-since settled in their ways, and remain there as much out of habit as fear of change — the world has moved on without them. They’ve become obsolete.
Between today’s 20-somethings and the trolls of yesteryear, the generational gap is clear. Yeah, there are discrepancies within the age groups, but it’s safe to say same-sex couples have a bright gay future ahead, including in the Tar Heel state. Just think about some of our generation’s characteristics: religious skepticism? marijuana? electronic music? Simply put, there are a lot of things that older generations just won’t get.
Now with the passing of Amendment One, I’m not so sure I’m willing to change their mind anymore. At this point it’s a waiting game because these dogs sure are getting old. As morbid as that sounds, it’s what we mean when we say that “children are our future.” Sometimes that means that older people are holding us back — even if no one wants to say it.
No, we shouldn’t give up advocating, educating and voting altogether, but we should emphasize focus on our peers and the youth. We have to secure the future.
Butters from South Park said it best in this season’s “Butterballs” episode during real talk with his trifling antagonistic grandmother who makes his life hell. Eventually he comes to a revelation and tells her, “Life changes, and well you won’t always be around. Some day you’re going to die, someday pretty soon.”