by Alberto Alvarez

In today’s modern society, the typical white picket fence family is starting to become harder and harder to find. Couples are waiting until their thirties to expand their family, women are not the only ones who stay home and take care of the house duties, and divorce rates are growing faster than ever. Through time, these aspects become factors as to why the standards of traditional families have become blurred.

With the help of numerous shows on prime-time television, we are exposed to the not-so-average families that are beginning to become more prominent within our society. One of the top comedies on television, Modern Family, showcases three separate families: a gay couple with an adopted child, an older husband with a younger wife who has a child from a previous husband, and the typical husband-and-wife-with-three-children-style family. These three demonstrate the out of the ordinary family that seems to maintain traditional family values that everyone strives for.

For example, the gay couple in Modern Family is still able to achieve the same as any other family, even though it may not be deemed as traditional. With the help of these gay figures throughout the media and entertainment world, there has been an increase of acceptance of the gay community.

Just within the past 20 years, the amount of advancements the LGBT community has made is impressive, yet slow.  There are now nine states that allow same-sex marriage, to represent the 15.7% of the United States population that approves.  Massachusetts was the first state to allow it, in 2004.  The United States needs to follow in the steps of other large, powerful countries that have allowed same-sex marriage nationwide, like the Netherlands (2001), Spain (2005), and Canada (2005).

The key to making such progress for this LGBT issue is for the community to become involved and begin to voice their opinions. The most important community member in the United States, Barack Obama, has taken it upon himself to express his view on the issue and announced his unwillingness to stop his support: “Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law,” the President said, “for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal, as well.” We live in a country that was founded under the principle that “we are all created equal.” Now, it is up to us to make that statement come true for everyone.