It is so sad the number of friends that have unfriended me on FaceBook over my recent posts, especially one’s identifying as gay. I’m actually quite embarrassed for them as in years past this same group of people were harassed, beaten up, hated on, denied employment opportunities, or disowned by families, or lost their lives. It’s also ironic that these same tend to be younger and have had the privilege to express and be themselves throughout their lives as a result of the generations that fought for their right to be who they are today. It saddens me that they use the same words of hate, hurt and such to a Presidential elect (one who myself I did not vote for) or towards the voters that elected him. They use these words based on assumptions or prior actions instead of seeing exactly what our new President elect will do. We are a democratic society with systems in place that protect our current laws, laws put IN MOTION by prior Presidents because people came up and spoke and educated the President that this was the thing to do. It embarrasses me that as a gay person who has always believed in acceptance, tolerance, understanding, “to be who I be” that I have to see these hateful activities going on today all based on an assumption of what if, instead of believing in our great American Democratic Society that we will continue to move on towards a great nation that embraces all it’s people. Sure we can jest, pass humor, state our beliefs but we sure don’t need to be rioting (and let me point out that the rioting today over a Presidential elect is in no way equitable to the Stonewall riots decades ago), spreading hate, or fighting within the same group that share these core beliefs. I’d rather see unity; and practice what we all have fought our lives for and that is acceptance and to be loved for who we are. We all have done this in our own ways whether large or small. We have the power of knowledge, education, and cultural history. We sure do not need to embarrass ourselves and succumb to the same haters that have ridiculed and suppressed us. Continue on with the local LGBT (LGBTQA) groups and participate in their upcoming endeavors but please let us not go backwards and undo their efforts. Acceptance in part is assimilation, strength though is proudly being who you are and this cannot be taken away by any President. And if our President elect attempts to, it will be just that, an attempt because we are a powerful force not to be reckoned with. Let’s focus our energies in preparing for that, if the time comes, instead of passing hate or contributing to activities that have no outcome; participate instead in activities that will. It’s our future and us “olderlings” are relying on a smart youth that need not go astray on inconsequential embarrassing matters. Remember, it has been stated that we are a group of the world’s most influential people. So let’s not embarrass ourselves: “Fight smart not aimless.”
And let’s not forget: A democracy by definition is government through elected representatives. A healthy civil society requires responsible and active citizens who value the system of government and work towards a shared vision of civil life.