I’m From Freehold, NJ.

by Dan

Satellite overhead image of New Jersey from Google Earth 2022

Fifteen years ago, I was sitting in the living room with my dad. On the TV screen in front of us, PBS was airing a documentary on the Civil War. I watched, entranced as hordes of men dressed in either blue or gray scrambled across the screen while trying to dodge explosions. A feeling of unease started to grow within me as I watched those from the North–where I had been born and raised–killing those who were from the South–the land that my grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins still called their home.

Turning to my dad, I asked “Which side are the bad guys on?”

Fast forward to the present where I am continually trying to reconcile my two main identities. I am gay. I am a christian. Sitting in front of my computer, I still watch people hurl explosive accusations and hateful slurs at each other from the glow of a screen. As I read people claiming to exhibit the love of Christ saying that all fags will burn in hell, gay people just as dogmatically saying that all Christians are hate-filled bigots stuck in the middle ages, both sides accusing each other of dragging the country to its destruction, the same question comes to mind:

“Which side are the bad guys on?”

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