Jack Evans and George Harris met one anther at a friend’s Bon Voyage party on January 19th, 1961. And they just celebrated their Fiftieth Unwedding Anniversary. Fifty years without any recognition of their commitment, except from friends and family and loved ones. Fifty years of having to work harder than their heterosexual counterparts when it comes to running a business, owning a home, caring for one another.
And yet they did it; I wonder why?
Perhaps, and I know this notion is strange to many straight people, but, perhaps they love each other, and wanted to stay together, regardless of the hardships, and the discrimination, and all that extra legal paperwork to simply live as a couple in love.
George says, “We work together and live together, which creates its own challenges. Relationships are difficult because we’re all different people, but it’s what you want and what you want out of life. It takes commitment and you have to care.”
Commitment and struggle, and all that extra work.
Jack says that when they bought their first home, they couldn’t get a mortgage under both names: “The first two houses we bought had to be in my name alone because mortgage companies would not allow two people who were not married to borrow money to buy a house.” And George says he is working on a book about his ordeal with the military in the ’50s; he was kicked out for being gay.
Times have changed, but there is still struggle.
But George and Jack set the example; live your life….damn the torpedoes. They’re still here; they’re still queer. Get used to it.
Gay people aren’t going anywhere.
We’ll still be here, fighting for our rights, and struggling to be recognized, and demanding equality. Get used to it.
If Jack and George can do it, anybody can.