Elad Nehorai, a young Jewish writer, describes how he lost his faith in gay rights:
It was the summer of 2008 in Chicago. The month before I went to yeshiva for the first time. I was excited. My friends and I had talked about doing this for a while now.
We were going to the gay pride parade. I remember how happy I was when we went, how happy I was to finally go to one of these. Over half of my friends in college were gay or bisexual, and I wondered why I had never been to one before.
We spent the whole day there, taking in the sights, enjoying the happiness and feeling of freedom.
I don’t know exactly what I was thinking that day, but I do know that I never expected to change how I felt about gays or gay rights. Sure, I was going to yeshiva, but I didn’t even believe that the Torah came from G-d. I liked the spirituality.
Anyway, this was who I was. And nothing would change that, no matter what happened in Israel.
But then it did.
I don’t really know how it happened, or when it happened. There was never a conscious decision. It was something I struggled with for a while, then tried not to think about because it upset me. And then one day, I woke up, and I realized I looked at the world differently.
Nehorai writes with love and respect for gay acquaintances who will disagree with his new view, but he believes friendship requires being up-front: “The orthodox Jewish world is full of people with a lot of love, with a lot of care, for the gay community, but who nonetheless don’t believe in gay marriage.”
At some point, the parade always ends.