A Few Thoughts On the 2016 Election and the Future For LGBT People
As most people who’ve read this blog know, I’ve never been too political about anything in a general sense. I will get into issues like marriage equality because I believe in them. I believe in equality for everyone. In a general sense, however, I don’t preach politics to anyone because I don’t think I’m qualified to do that. I also respect all opinions, not just my own. And from what I’ve seen this week on social media from all sides, I truly believe it’s time to start healing from this past election and it’s time to move forward. As Secretary Clinton said in her well-executed concession speech, there’s a lot of work still to be done.
With that said, I also believe it’s important for the LGBT community…and everyone else who falls under that umbrella…to work together in order to maintain everything we’ve already worked so hard to obtain. Obviously, I’m not coming from a place of privilege, and most of the people reading this aren’t either. I don’t use politics and I don’t exploit your emotions (or your disappointment in this election) to get you to read another one of my books. I give you all more credit than that. I’ve seen a few authors do that this week, and frankly it bothers me to see them use good people that way. It’s shabby and it’s a different kind of porn. And I know a lot of you are scared and worried about what’s going to happen in the future. That’s reasonable and understandable. We’re all a little worried. As an openly gay man I’ve felt that way many times in my life.
I don’t want this to be a long post, but I do want to get one main point across for ALL the people who have been let down this week by this election. If you look back at LGBT history, and the gay liberation movement…a time that was long before authors who care more about selling their books than they do about people…you’ll see that every single LGBT battle was fought for, and won, by LGBT people who came together and worked hard. Harvey Milk didn’t depend on politicians, he became one. These battles, including same sex marriage, were not won thanks to any individual politician. They were won thanks to the strength and the spirited activists who were passionate about them.
I think that’s going to continue, and we’re going to keep moving forward. The LGBT community is not the same as it was 8 years ago. We’re stronger and we’re more powerful. We also have more allies. Look at it this way. After years of fighting, we took same sex marriage to the highest court and we won. It started out small, and went state by state, but we got there. Don’t forget that more LGBT people are coming out than ever before. I don’t think we’ve even begun to guess how many there are. And we can still continue to move forward and grow even stronger, one step at a time, the same way we always have.
I’m not going to go into dramatic seclusion or go off on personal hiatus because of this election. I don’t need to get my thoughts together. My thoughts are together. I’m going to keep moving forward the same way I always have. I’m going to keep encouraging, especially the closeted people who send me private e-mails. I’m going to keep challenging articles and bloggers I read and link to on this blog that I think are full of crap. Even though I have no idea what to expect in the next four years at this moment, I do know I’m not ready to step back for anyone. And neither should you.