JUSTICE, social, economic and political;
LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;
EQUALITY of status and of opportunity; and to promote among them all.
I start by quoting the Preamble because not much of it did I see in my real life. Don't judge me for saying this, but 'equality' was not what I saw for myself living in this country for over 26 years. I am a member of the LGBTQ community and I am an Indian living in a country where I was almost not considered a human being for indulging in something that comes naturally.
Being a gay man in India isn't easy. No matter what you do, no matter how hard you try to let people know, the judging eyes will follow. At every step, I had to face my fear. Fear of being myself and doing something that people take for granted. The reason? I am a man who loves men. It was a struggle for me all my life until I came out to my mother. It was at the age of 13 when I found out that I was attracted to men. It was after my first girlfriend that I realised I like my guy best friend more. That is when I accepted it. But it wasn't easy to know something at the age of 13 and keep it under wraps until the age of 18.
After owning it to myself and keeping it under wraps for five years, I knew I had to come out to my mother who is the coolest mother ever! I had to tell her to make her understand what was going on in my life. So, I did, but she didn't take it well. She did not talk to me for three days when I came out to her. It happened even though she was SO progressive. But after three days of radio silence, we spoke. We spoke in acceptance and she cried. She felt bad for seeing me not have the rights that I deserved.
Now I had to tell the world because there was a man I truly loved and I couldn't see a reason why I could not be with him. While other couples in the world can book hotel rooms, hold hands, kiss and grind in public, I could not. It was hard. People would look at me with contempt and thrash me for being a part of the society. I have even heard my homophobic neighbour tell my mother that she should take her gay son to a homoeopathic doctor because it heals all kinds of illness! But while there were some who accepted me, there were others who frowned but you know what my mother said? "Kuch toh log kahenge, logo ka kaam hai kehna." That gave me all the strength to move forward without any fear of judgement.
But when I woke up in the morning this morning, I realised I was a free man. The Supreme Court of India had scrapped out the Section 377. What a day to be alive. What a day to declare our love, freely and openly. Thank you, Supreme court for making us feel like we're part of the system. Thank you for allowing us to finally rejoice the words of our Preamble. This is one little step for humanity and we still have miles and miles to go. Love is not a crime. Finally!
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