India Uncut

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Thursday, December 22, 2005

The lengthening shadow

In a moving review of Brokeback Mountain, Andrew Sullivan writes:
Three scenes remain in my mind. There's a shot after the two men leave each other for the first time when Ennis [Ledger] stays upright and walks nonchalantly as his lover drives away. But then, as soon as his beloved is out of sight, he collapses in emotional pain, punching a wall in agony, even then having to deflect the suspicion of a stranger. The moment when they reunite - its passion, its need, its depth - ravishes with insight into what love truly is. Then there's the scene when Ennis' wife finally confronts him - and you can see the damage done to so many lives by the powerful, suffocating evil of homophobia. So many lives. Sometimes I start to imagine how much accumulated human pain has been inflicted for so many centuries on so many gay hearts and souls, and then I stop. It's too much. We are slowly healing; but some wounds will never heal; and they are inscribed on the souls of millions in the past - the ones who persecuted, the ones who suffered, the ones who never let themselves be loved - or saw it briefly once, feared it and lived their lives in the lengthening shadow of their regrets.
Just as we find it hard to imagine how people could once have considered it natural to keep slaves or unnatural for women to vote, I think we will one day wonder how gays could have been treated the way they are today. (Indeed, homosexuality is still illegal in India.) And to stop gay people from marrying each other will seem as ludicrous as not allowing left-handers to drive. Thankfully, some change is happening.

(That last link via Uma.)
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