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Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Microstory 2033: Kentucky

Here’s something you may not know about, but it used to be illegal to be gay and in the military. They had a law called Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, which said that you could want to be with a man if you were a man, or a woman if you were a woman, but you weren’t allowed to say anything about it. But the thing is, no one was allowed to ask you about it either. This was a way to protect people like my papa, but it also meant that he didn’t feel like he could be himself. When he left the Navy, he still didn’t feel like that, because he was required to stay in the reserves for the next four years, even though he had a regular job in Chicago. So it was a long time before he wasn’t afraid to go out and date the people that he wanted to. In the year 2011, the new president ended the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell thing, and said that it was okay to be gay in the military, and for people to know. I don’t think they can ask you about it still, though. Anyway, after this happened, papa dated a few guys, but he never fell in love with anyone. That all changed when he went on a train trip with his sister and her family. They were trying to get to Roanoke, Virginia, but their train broke down in Kentucky. It took so long to get a new one that they had to sleep there for one night. That is where my papa met my dad, Santana Lopez. They started talking to each other, and found out that they had a lot in common. The only problem was...dad lived in Virginia, and papa was only going there to visit.

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