Sunday, October 30, 2005

"When you care enough to send the very best"

I went to Hallmark on Thursday, as I do during many of my lunch hours. The office I work at is in the midst of 10 huge apartment buildings, two high schools full of rowdy kids that are not the least bit interested in academics, a decent neighborhood and 5 shopping centers. Aside from a 20-minute walk down to the beach or to St. Charles parish, the one place amidst this to retreat from all of this is the local Hallmark store. This place has kept me entertained, and I have kept them open by "caring enough to send my very best" for the past year or so…

Back to lunchtime. As usual, I got caught up reading each and every card simply to imagine the situations that would go with each, dreaming of the time I would give or receive it. In my daydreams, I pick up the 50th wedding anniversary card, the new baby card and the "I miss you-come back" card. Thankful for my health and the health of my loved ones, I read the get-well card and the sympathy card. Some of them are just so thoughtful, and they really make you treasure friendships, and so forth. No one is going to deny that getting mail is like getting a little piece of love.

I stopped in my tracks when I found this card (I tried to find it online at hallmark.com, but to no avail): A card featuring two grown men. Though they were just little pencil drawings, it was obvious that both were men, and that the woman did not simply have short hair. Three scenes showed the one lover giving an apple pie and a bouquet of flowers to the other. The font would also suggest that it is from a man to a man. "Loving me is a full-time job. Thanks for putting in over-time" was the message on the inside. Yup, this card is definitely from Harry to Mike. You really can express anything with a Hallmark card, huh?

Well, this little revelation is certainly not the first time the gay community has succeeded in putting their vulgarity in our faces. In fact, there is even a non-profit organization, The Commercial Closet, that works to urge major corporations to include gay love in their advertising and products. Their website keeps track of their success, and it applauds companies that are sensitive to the portraying gay love as just another part of American life.

I speculate that it will not be long before there is a "same-sex" section at your local card shop. This vulgar message is so clear in so many other aspects of our lives, from TV to print advertisements, from biased media reports, from gay-straight alliances at schools, from general attitudes that embrace vice and shun virtue...

I urge you, my dear reader, to stay educated: visit the Alliance Alerts page from the Alliance Defense Fund. You can also subscribe and have the daily alerts sent to your inbox. One section of the Alliance Alert specifically addresses GLBT issues.

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