Even if you were not amongst the 26.7 million viewers watching it unfold on television, you have likely heard about Queen Latifah officiating a mass wedding on stage of the 2014 Grammy Awards. With Macklemore and Ryann Lewis hit song, "Same Love," the most culturally important song we've seen in decades and the unofficial same-sex love song, playing in the background, thirty-four couples wed. The couples represented the diversity that is present in America today. Some of them were young, some old, some interracial, some straight and yes, some were gay. There were tears and hand holding and singing and rejoicing on stage. Meanwhile in the world of cyber space and in the social media world, there was anger, disgust and outrage.
Because of my many years of work in the Christian music industry I have a lot of Christians in my social networks. Some of these so-called Christians, you know those who are supposed to be loving and kind, have been chiming in on the topic in a not-so-loving way. Some of these people, who include musicians, record label executives and fans, were saying some pretty harsh, even radical things.
Apparently, because of this event at the Grammys, said that they were ashamed to be from America. That's true patriotism!? Some other conservatives were so offended and threatened by the same sex weddings that they said they needed to get a shotgun to protect themselves. I'm not entirely sure who or what their enemy is, but one could assume that they are protecting themselves from those evil gays who force people into the homosexual lifestyle and can turn a straight man gay with the dusty of pixie dust. The hate I saw from these so-called Christians makes me sad and angry and ashamed.
My Facebook and Twitter feeds are filled with people who say that they are going to boycott the Grammys because of the events of the night. Oddly enough, these were the same people who were going nuts during the Duck Dynasty ordeal speaking of how they must fight for the right to speak their mind. They claimed that they would fight to the death for Phil's freedom of speech and they would support him, not only in prayer, but financially through product sales. Apparently, the first amendment is worth fighting for if the victim is an outspoken duck hunter who shares their beliefs, but not if the victim or victims happen to be homosexual.
Instead of celebrating the love that was portrayed on the Grammys, or recognizing the strides that the LGBT community has made in the past decade, even in the last year, many of my social media friends have chosen to focus on hatred. They are so busy focusing on what they believe is wrong in the country, that they aren't able to see the great display of love that was evident to the rest of us.
It will be interesting to see how history remembers the 2014 Grammy awards. Will it be remembered as a landmark night in the fight for equal rights? Will it be remembered as the night that Christians mark as a loss in the battle of right and wrong? I guess it will depend upon who is writing the history book. But I know that I will remember it as a night of love, not of gimmicks or a publicity stunt, as some accuse. I will remember it as a night when thirty-four couples were united in love without the fear of judgment or shame, at least for the moment.
I would love if history would mark this time as the period when love prevailed over hatred. When tolerance, despite skin color or sexual orientation, was achieved. This ideal society can only become a reality if we learn to embrace our similarities, celebrate our differences and strive towards tolerance. If we as a society, and specifically, a Christian community, had as much passion in love as we do in hate, real results would emerge, and that would be a truly historic moment.