I Don’t Give a Damn About My Bad Reputation

I really don’t.

It confuses me that people are surprised by my passion regarding LGBTQ issues. You don’t have to be passionate about them. That’s cool. I am, though. And I am because I want this world to be a better place for my kids AND yours. Latest story: my kid’s fear of going public at work about the fact that he is transgender because of fear of severe discrimination. And for what? Really? How does this affect anyone besides himself? Truly. Ridiculous.

Do you know what else is ridiculous?

straight

I think we should talk about why there is no “straight pride.” It seems incredibly self explanatory to me, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned in my 40 (yikes) years on this earth, not everyone thinks like me. Gasp!

Are you-as an aside, I’m speaking to the cis-gender (if you don’t know what that means, you could totally Google it), straight crowd here-Are you discriminated against due to your sexuality? Have you been fired from a job for being heterosexual? Have you been refused housing for being a straight person? How about this one…has anyone threatened you or actually physically harmed you for your pesky straightness? Perhaps you were kicked out of your childhood home when you shared with your parents that you were, in fact, heterosexual? Maybe you live in a part of the world where it is actually against the law to be straight? No??? Shocking.

The LGBT Pride movement is, in part, about dignity and equal rights for a group of people consistently discriminated against and often threatened with violence. It’s not born from a need to celebrate being “not straight.” It’s having a voice. It’s being able to stand up and declare basic humanity and the desire for equal rights.

Now, there’s something I need to add here. I am a cis-gender, straight human myself. I do consider myself a LGBT ally, but if someone who is actually a part of said community feels the need to correct my interpretation here, I’d be happy to hear it. My only qualification for speaking up on behalf of the LGBT community is the brain in my head. And an incredible amount of love and concern for my oldest son. That too.

So, please tell me…what is the harm to you? Does Pride Month affect you in some way? I can’t imagine that it does. Maybe you are inconvenienced by the extra traffic in your city during the Pride Parade?

I don’t get why people who are often the first to declare a love for their country and for the importance of “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness” are also the first people to refuse basic rights for certain groups of people. American ideals are only for Americans like you, huh? It truly makes no sense to me.

Live and let live.

The first anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision regarding same sex marriage just passed. One year of equal marriage rights in this country. A whole year. How has that been going for you personally? Has the influx of happy gay couples and their weddings affected you in some way? I’m going to go out on a limb here and say no. Our country continues on. None of the doomsday predictions have come to pass. No apocalyptic catastrophes. Well, except for Donald Trump. I think he qualifies as some sort of catastrophe. For some reason I don’t think same sex marriage accounts for his rise, though.

Just saying.

One last thing: stop expecting me to be perfectly comfortable around you. Let me explain. If you do believe, wholeheartedly, with your whole soul and everything that you are, that being transgender, queer, homosexual, is a sin, I don’t want my children around you. Here’s where you chime in and tell me that I’m close minded and bigoted against those with deeply held religious beliefs and that my children should be exposed to different beliefs than my own. And on one level, I agree. My children need to know that there are lots of different belief systems in this world and just because someone thinks differently than we do doesn’t mean they are bad. And I do teach my children that.  And of course, all of us interact with such people on a daily basis. There is still part of my brain, though, that tells me to STAY AWAY from people who would do harm to one or all of my children. And there’s where the real miscommunication happens between myself and those with deeply held religious beliefs. You don’t believe that having those beliefs is harmful. IT IS. And I’ve tried so many times in the past to explain why that I don’t care to do it again. Just try to understand that I want my child surrounded by people who truly love and support him for exactly who he is. I don’t want people who “love” him in spite of his “sin.” Because being transgender is not something he does, it’s who he is. At his core. Just like your faith is not just something you do, but who you are (that’s what you say, right?). So, your belief that being on the LGBTQ spectrum is a sin is condemning those people as a whole. It’s not a lifestyle, it’s not something they do. It’s WHO THEY ARE. So, while I appreciate your differing beliefs, the fact that you condemn my child, you see him as flawed and something to be fixed, does not actually make me feel nice and comfy around you. As his own person, Jaten will have to decide who he’s comfortable around and who he’s not. As his mom, I just want him protected.

As I was writing this post, I decided to have a conversation on camera with the three children who were here. That conversation is posted here.

And that’s all I have to say for now.

Wait, one more thing: Happy Pride Month!!! And happy One Year Anniversary of same sex marriage across the country!! These things make me SO happy!

Oh, and as a reminder:

Damn

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2 Comments

  1. Rad
    Jun 29, 2016

    I need that shirt but change a word from damn to fu €%..
    The Q is new to me in LBTQ.. I’ve heard it a few times around here but not very often. I thought it was a derogatory term. No need for the G if you have the Q is what the kids told me lol.. love your passion and blog. Colorado might be a little less open about Trans than they are here. Sorry Jaten has that fear.. but why go public at work or anywhere, just be you. Love you guys. See you I Nov. I hope. And Jaten, be you and stay strong.

    • Toni
      Jun 29, 2016

      Thanks so much, Rad. Appreciate your love and support and soooo excited to see you guys in November. LGBT and LGBTQ are kind of used interchangeably, as I understand it. The community has “taken back” the term queer and changed it from a negative term into a sort of all encompassing term meaning whatever the individual person defines it as. ? And that shirt would be even more awesome with the change you suggested. ?

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