Today, I came across this India Today magazine cover featuring a gay couple kissing. I wanted to share this with everyone because it definitely meant something. Something towards equality and a progressive, tolerant society where homosexuality is seen at par with heterosexuality and is considered very normal.
Normality is what I am fighting for. But I didn’t share it with anyone because I feared that people, like always, would frown and complain “Uday, why do you talk about this all the time. You are desperate and super vulnerable.” While I agree on the vulnerable part (not happy about it), I do not talk about it all the time.
Sometimes I do and I have a reason for doing so. I want acceptance and the feeling of normality in society.
When straight people talk about how they would get married or their love affairs or sexual innuendos, it is considered normal and is always welcomed, but when I do the same thing people complain that I am being obsessed with my sexuality. And some even accuse me of polluting the society or their kid’s mind. In my defence, my sexuality won’t pollute your kid’s mind, stories of rapes, molestation and domestic violence have been doing it.
Once, I was watching a famous Indian singing talent show and came across this contestant who was losing. I was obviously sad and commented that he looked very cute and he should be helped. While I was finishing my sentence, a heterosexual homophobic person rose up to accuse me of being desperate and filthy. The same homophobic person talks about ‘sexy girls’, porn stars, and the fact that he is into married women and he fancies himself as a bhabhi person (someone who is sexually stimulated by married women).
I do not talk about homosexuality because I am obsessed with it. I talk about it because it is normal. Heterosexual people talk about their marriages and their love interests all the time.
Have you noticed that a community in India which is considered backward economically due to years of oppression, keeps pictures of Bhim Rao Ambedkar and poet Ravi Das? You will find a picture of Shri Ravi Das inside every shop they own. These people, according to me, are not obsessed with their (even ours) leaders. They are simply rising their community’s pride to gain public acceptance, and to prove themselves as equals because rest of the society is not ready to integrate them even after over 70 years of what we call ‘Independence’. The day every single citizen stops treating them differently they would also stop talking about their pride. Similarly, the day you treat the gay community with normality, we will stop ‘annoying’ you with our pride.
For instance, when I watched DDLJ or ‘Ae Dil Hain Mushkil’, I didn’t complain that it was a straight movie and that I wasn’t comfortable with straight people romancing. When I can understand your love and your emotions why can’t you reciprocate the same? Why would you label our movies and books as gay movies or gay books?
One more reason I talk about it is that I want people to hear about it so much that they get used to the idea of us being normal people. It’s a science – the more you talk about something, the more accustomed you get with it.
Then there are some people who have accepted us only because they want to portray themselves as ‘educated, liberal people’. But, deep within, they are homophobic and are praying for the day science proves us as unnatural. But sadly that day won’t come. Because not only World Health Organisation (WHO) and American Psychology Association, the Indian Psychology Association, the Indian Medical Council but many Hindu saints like Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Satguru have also spoken in our favour and have approved our sexuality. Though I never needed any validation from such big names, I am a living example of God’s creation.
Legalisation of homosexuality is only the very first step. Soon, in the near future, we will have laws for same sex marriages, same sex people openly serving in military, adoption, anti-discrimination, etc. Hence, people must get used to us and accept us with love. I assure you, you will only get love in return.