Sunday, June 12, 2016

Another Tragedy Occurs : #PrayForOrlando #PulseNightClub #GayPride

Going to a gay club is more than just a night's a place where you can gather with friends, a place of community, camaraderie - a place where people can just have fun and be themselves no matter who they are. Whether you want to go out to the mall, a movie theatre, bible study at your church, a concert - you should feel safe in those places. For me, I love going out with my friends to the club and especially love it when I can take straight friends into that world and they have equal amount of fun as everyone else.
Being specifically targeted simply "for being gay" as motive of killing is a hate crime - and I remind myself once again of how I didn't want the world to know I was gay because I didn't think I could be safe. Hearing the whispers of being called a faggot behind my back, the snickers, or looks of judgement always made me self conscious . The killing of Matthew Shepherd and the bullying suicide of Lawrence King still haunts and affect me in asking why people hate and seek out to hurt others simply because "they are different". There are still times that we feel afraid to kiss our same sex partner in public, to hold hands, to simply show affection in the same way our straight counterparts can freely and lovingly do so. If you are judging and placing the blame on an extreme religion, take that mirror up and look at your own and see what messages are being sent to the LGBT community on how you view and support them. It may not be calling out to openly kill them, but what message does shaming, turning your back on them, ignoring them, or refusing to pass laws that protect tell the LGBT community send a message that "we don't want you"?

How ridiculous and sadly ironic that gay men cannot donate blood to the very population of those that they want to help in this tragedy???

With June being Pride month, more than ever, we have to look at our history, look at the struggles of the past, and see what fights are in store for us in the future that we have to overcome. I am PROUD of my community that comes together in times of crisis. I am PROUD of all the allies that I am best friends and the ones who I constantly add to my group of friends who love and support me and see me as a person (who just happens to be gay). I always tell you how much I love you and today makes no exception.

So instead of being that young man who was afraid to speak up because he hated the sound of his voice because it sounded "too gay", well I am now PROUD that I can use this gay voice in whatever way I can to help join the fight of equality, acceptance, and be as vocal for those who cannot speak up and speak out for the very fears that they themselves could one day be a target simply for trying to live their life of being open, proud, and their authentic selves. 

 ‪#‎LoveConquersHate‬ #PrayForOrlando #PulseNightClub #GayPride 

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