Ain’t I A Person

If you look up ‘Racism’ in the dictionary, it would show that it means prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against a person or people based on their membership of a particular racial or ethnic group, typically a minority or marginalized.

The LBGTQ+ Group is a group that is discriminated against everywhere. Even now in most countries, homosexuality is illegal and this story is my humble endeavour to support this community because we all deserve respect and equal rights.  

William was a teen from New York who loved travelling. He was touring Chicago when he met, Peter, another teen, who was from Dallas. Coincidentally, they were both in the same restaurant at the same time –  THE DOWNTOWN CHICAGO FISH  RESTAURANT.

The moment they saw each other, they felt an emotional connection as if they knew each other for seven lives and that they were meant to be together. William and Peter smiled at each other, exchanged their names and contact numbers, and started conversing as if they were best buddies. And after some time, they bid goodbye and casually left for their homes.

Few days had passed, but both were pining to meet each other. It so happened that due to projects given by the college and with their participation needed for their grades, they were supposed to go to the international college showcase to be held in Geneva, Switzerland.

They both decided to meet once the School Fair was over in Geneva’s City Center mall. But they did not know that both New York & Dallas colleges booked the same hotel for their students. At the counter while checking-in… Wait, you think they both met here? No, not at all. Keep reading!

After checking in, both went to their respective rooms and were busy working on their projects till the evening. It was dinner time; both stopped their work and came out of their rooms simultaneously in a hurry to finish their dinner. 

But then… You think they met in the elevator? No, no, not at all. Keep reading!

Casually they entered the elevator, got down, went to the dining room, and started getting their plates and filling them with food. After that, they looked for an empty seat to have their dinner. From two different directions of the dining room, they reached a single table, kept their plates, and looked at each other.

At that instance, for a few minutes, they were speechless and started crying out of joy. They began to chitter-chatter and were laughing out loud. Happiness was in the air. 

But just then, to spoil their happiness, the guys sitting next to their table started teasing William about his appearance and how they communicated with each other. The guy made Peter mad, and Peter punched the bully on the nose. The bully’s friend stopped the fight by saying, “Guys, we came for the project, let us not mess up things here with our attitude. We may lose our grades; let us move on”, and hence, they all left the place. 

After they left the place, Peter said to William, “We should not care about our appearance; we should care about only how kind we are in our hearts, let us also focus on our Science fair.”

The Science fair went by smoothly and they both did an excellent job. They started their journey back to Geneva Airport. They went to a coffee shop at the gate and ordered a cappuccino. William and Peter were so deep in their conversations that they did not even realise their coffees had not been served for long. It did not matter to them though. What mattered to them was ‘them’. William eventually proposed to Peter in the middle of the conversation. In reply, Peter said one word instantly, “YES”. That one word made the person who served the coffee, who was overhearing their chat, angry and disgusted. To show his hatred for gays, he added salt in their coffees instead of sugar and served it to them.

He was from Italy and had a moustache, a snout, and no beard. He wore a blue suit and black pants and had a big smile on his face, with his eyebrows close together. 

Peter yelled, “WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS!?” 

The waiter replied indignantly, “I did this to show hatred for you, Gays”.

Fortunately, the airport security officer was nearby. He warned the coffee shop owner not to show any discrimination or else the airport security would cancel his cafe license.

As the announcement for the flights was made, they both went back to their respective cities, and this incident made them take a life-changing decision: ‘staying together’

Of course, they had a big fight with their parents. A fight with their surroundings, yet another argument about where to stay, where to get married. After a week of arguments, they decided to move to Chicago and start their new challenging life.

But do you think their marriage worked out? Do you think life after their marriage was smooth? Do you think their job place was a happy experience for them? Do you think their college  life went by as they wanted? Do you think they had a safe place to live? 

The answer to these questions is a BIG NO

They encountered many problems, yet they had one thing in common: trust and love for each other. That made them fight for their revolutionary cause.

Part-2 of this story will be published soon which will depict how William and Peter faced difficulties surviving in society. 

// This piece has been penned by 11-year-old Srikar Chitta from Hyderabad and has been chosen for publication on our website from the weekly submissions //

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