This past week has been a whirlwind for US politics – the Presidential election, protests, and global commentary. There’s a lot of scare rhetoric out there, intimidating the LGBTQ+ community. Some things in the news are true, others are just meant to intimidate the community.
Personally, I was terrified while watching the election results roll in. I was scared for myself and for my friends. Even now, I’m still not quite sure what to believe. And that’s okay.
But everyone’s sick of hearing about Trump. What else is going on now?
Well, everyone’s heard about Harvey Milk, one of the first openly gay individual holding public office in the US.
But who is openly LGBTQ+ in politics now (during this election cycle)?!
- Carlos Guillermo Smith and Charles Richardson are both gay-identifying legislators in Florida
- Leslie Herod is the first black LGBTQ+ state representative in Colorado
- Misty Snow and Misty Plowright are the first trans-identifying individuals to be placed in primaries on a major parties ticket
- Kate Brown is the first openly LGBTQ+ individual elected as a state governor in the US
This is great, because it’s pushing for greater aceptance and diversity. It still is not a lot, however. Always remember that your voice counts and that your vote matters. Don’t buy into scare rhetoric – reach out, and see what’s going on in the community, and how politics might be affecting you.
So what else is going on?
- Back in September, the NCAA decided to remove 7 championships from North Carolina due to the state’s negative stances and legislation on LGBTQ+ rights
- Seattle just banned gay conversion therapy (which only five states have banned… How is it not banned everywhere?!?!)
- Eighteen states guarantee individuals access to bathrooms, no matter their gender identity (Again, why isn’t this a national thing?! Meanwhile Mississippi and North Carolina refuse to cooperate)
- At least 55% of Americans support same-sex marriage
Don’t take every article you see at face value – politics might be a little scary and unpredictable for identity-minorities right now, but it doesn’t mean there isn’t good going on too. Above all else, it’s important to stay together and promote identity-equality.
Promoting an equal future, photo by Wonder woman0731 on Flickr, CC
If you are LGBTQ+ or an ally, and want help or to know what’s going on to promote equality, or if you want to get involved, here are some resources.
Have any other resources you think should be mentioned? Any thoughts on this article? Leave a comment!
Featured image by IIP Photo Archive on Flickr, CC