I love this month not only because June is when I finish the school year and can focus on novel-writing for the summer, but also because it’s the only month out of the year when the struggles and triumphs of the LGBTQ community receive the attention and thoughtful contemplation they deserve.
Unfortunately, it’s also the time when some straight people, frustrated with the myriad minutia of their over-burdened straight lives, seize this opportunity to point out that if we want equality so bad, why do we want/get our own month of parades and special attention? Well, the simple answer is, and please pay attention, we don’t have equality yet. As long as our elected republican members of Congress fail to pass the Equality Act, America will always have states in which the LGBTQ community is most definitely not considered equal. And frankly, that’s all I’m going to say to heterosexuals about this asinine complaint they’ve sifted out of the cesspool of social media.
Now to the other “but” in my blog… and no, it’s not one of those tight, cute ones you see on boys marching in their spandex shorty-shorts in Pride parades all over the world. This “but” has to do with all the fabulous corporations in America that temporarily change their logos to rainbow, have “Pride” days at amusement parks or sporting events, or just give us a happy, rainbowy 2-thumbs up in whatever product they’re selling. We love this–don’t get me wrong. But you know what we would love more than anything else? STOP voting for politicians at the city, state, and federal level who REFUSE to support LGBTQ equality as evidenced by their shameless public sentiments and voting records.
Yes, this is a big, bold request. It asks a lot of republicans–going against your family, your spouse, and your financial self-interests to take a stand for the most important and fundamental promise this country makes: “liberty and justice for all.” Sounds good, doesn’t it? (I mean the quote, not the part where you have to go against your own self-interests. But hey, every movement has its martyrs, right?) Think of what we can accomplish with this powerful statement. If we make it through one election cycle where every anti-gay politician loses, you can bet that future GOP candidates will think twice before trading on the Constitutional rights and emotional well-being of LGBTQ Americans for re-election.
But hey, enough of this heavy realism. It’s Pride month! Whether you’re an LGBTQ or a straight ally, let’s all dig out our leather, spandex, and all things rainbow and have a blast dancing in the streets with the same relief, exhilaration, and faith in humanity we’d have if the Equality Act has more than a Progressive’s chance in Mississippi during the Trump administration!