Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Remember When... #LGBTQ #IDAHOT2017

So far, I can sum up 2017 with three little letters: 


It's been everything I feared would come of putting such a disturbed man in office. Still, as hard as it's been for me, it's taken a bigger toll on the Millennials and iGens. I'm in awe of the way they've risen to the challenge despite the world turning upside down overnight.

This post is for you fearless and inspiring sprouts who are determined to fix what we've so  gloriously fucked up.

You might not realize it, but the pre-Obama era in our fight for equality looked exactly like this. I wish I could say the familiarity is comforting. In a way, maybe it is because I know we've done this before. We can do it again. 

For decades the Rainbow Community fought and suffered in obscurity. We've always been our own biggest defender and our most determined ally, and we've done it alone. Despite closeted, self-hating politicians and religious leaders. Despite unjust laws, public humiliation, and police raids. Despite those who labeled us degenerate, sick, depraved. We clawed our way to a point where we became impossible to ignore.

That visibility has always been our greatest resource. 45's administration is highlighting why it still is. We can't afford to be silent and allow legislators to believe they can erase us. 

It's time to pick up where our predecessors left off and be what our enemies have never had the balls to be: BRAVE. Our history is full of people who ran illegal gay bars in the 50's, risking jail time to give gay men a sense of community. People who got fed up with the constant police harassment in NY and made their stand one night at Stonewall. Those who formed national organizations to support each other during the AIDS epidemic long before social media or even email. Back when America's opinion of gays was that they weren't worth saving -- an opinion shared by the man occupying the oval office at the time.

We have thousands of unnamed heroes in our past who risked everything to make sure the Rainbow Community wouldn't be extinguished. Now it's our turn to carry the torch.

My hope for 2017 is to see people continue to fly out of the closet. It's not always easy. Like many of us, I've spent my life the target of an endless string of bullies. Living out loud isn't where I'm comfortable, but we need more voices, more stories, more LGBTQs showing the world that we're not soulless monsters. We're people just like they are. With jobs and dreams and rights that shouldn't have to be legislated.

So get out there and be brave, people! Dance your way through a pride parade or two. Take so many selfies you run out of memory on your cell. Splatter it from one end of social media to the other. Tell the world who and what you are. If you can do it safely, it's time to lend your voice to the movement and become part of history!