A Day of Despair, when we need a Day of Hope

For those of you who maybe were approached in school or college on monday, you’ll know that it was the “Day of Dialogue”, an event meant to counter the “Day of Silence” memorial that takes place every year. It was started by Focus on the Family and the Alliance Defense Fund to protest the grass roots personal vow of silence taken to protest bullying of LGBTQIA youth.

They try to wrap the concepts up in ideas of love, hope, understanding, compassion and truth, and yet in an Orwellian twist the day is one of hate, despair, ignorance, callousness and lies, but it doesn’t need to be. There are those who want to leave the religious bigots alone, to suffer in their pain and ignorance but that’s not good enough for me.

We through chances of fate, luck and character, get the advantage of seeing a better world, a tolerant progressive world worthy of our dreams. I don’t want to live in a bubble outside which fear and misunderstanding rule. We’re all outside Plato’s Cave, bathing in the sunshine looking in at people chained to the walls begging to not be set free. Maybe thats a situation you can live comfortably with, but I choose not to.

As you sit comfortably in your homes and live you lives, think about all the Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning, and Intersex youth. There’s at least a million children in daily torment due to the prejudices of their parents who we are abandoning. But as well as that we are abandoning those parents, pastors and other misguided people to their ignorance. I have to believe that for all the evil they spread, there has to be hope for the Pope, Maggie Gallagher, and Rick Santorum. All it takes is the right person, in the right place, with some wise words, to start them on the road towards the light.

This isn’t about changing what those people are, its about showing them about the kind of people they have the potential to be, free of the shackles of ignorance. We don’t have to wait until the next “Day of Dialogue” we can start today, we can start talking, and fighting the lies they tell about us.The battles fought over healthcare actually gives us some lessons to be learned. We have to confront every lie, every distortion, and every last verse of holy book. The death panels lie should have lasted less than a news cycle, and so should the lies being told about LGBTQIA people. We are different, but we are not broken, and our stories, and our courage can set more than just us free.

Its not just about us, its about freeing them from the artificial constraints that they are forced into. The sheer madness of the situation is actually thrown into sharp relief with the legal prostitution that occurs in Iran, where a helpful iman grants marriages between client and sex worker, who after “sharing the marital bed” divorce using the “I divorce you, I divorce you, I divorce you” method, and leave. Sex is meant to be between consenting adults, and freedom from religious views on sex is something of what we offer. … and holding it back because of some strange ideas about criminalizing intimacy only being allowed during marriage, is lunacy.

 

Half Way Out of the Dark

The winter solstice, which goes by many names, is represented by a beautiful phrase “Half Way Out of the Dark” as spoken by the Doctor.

Things feel pretty dark right now, the conservative right wing has just practiced a purge on its more moderate types, and now has gotten into the majority of the House of Representatives.

Barack Obama, while being a good centrist leader, is not the progressive president we’d hoped for, were ENDA implementation and DOMA repeal high priorities, you’d hope they would have been pushed through or least brought up during this Congress.

Uganda is still going ahead with their gay genocide bill, and the Christian Right is looking at their situation practically salivating at the possibilities. Look at the Tea Party caucus coalescing around Jim DeMint and his hatred.

The extraordinary thing about the winter solstice is that at the same time as being the shortest, darkest, most miserable day of the year, with a progression of it getting darker and shorter its the first day it starts getting brighter and sunnier.

There is a large grouping of intolerant people on the right, often formed around religious groups, that wants to roll back the progress. They are afraid of us, and out of fear and hatred they bring up voices like Christine O’Donnell, Joe Miller and Sharon Angle.

However our allies are growing, a large majority of Americans recognizing the fact that gay discrimination is wrong, and its only a matter of time before those people realize that they need to support full equality. We help that every day that we are true to ourselves, not ashamed, not in the closet, and not quiet.

If you are hiding in the closet at work, its time to stop, its time to stand up. Maybe in your church you hide yourself for a quiet life, its time to stop, its time to stand up. Thankfully now my gay brothers and lesbian sisters will soon be able to stand up for themselves in the military. We are not a quiet passive minority, we are an army of repressed, brilliant, wonderful, shining people, and now is the time to not wait for the light, but create it.

We shouldn’t be waiting, we have to stand up, today we should have equality, so waiting for tomorrow is too late.

I’m Gemma, I’m a lesbian identified, occasionally guy dating, transgender woman, and I’m standing up for today being the day we get equality.