Never Fall Silent
As we are graced with a new leader who believes members of the LGBT should not be treated equally and has promised to do whatever he can to undo the progress we have made, I think back to all that will be lost.
For decades we have spoken up and fought. People have been murdered for our cause. Murdered in secrecy and murdered in public out on the streets because they were lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, not gender-conforming, and a myriad of other identities.
Adults, teens and even children have committed suicide because they believed that hope was lost. The hope that things will ever get better, that they could love freely in America, openly as who they truly are. They had no hope that they would ever be accepted, to be loved as human and to be treated as equal citizens of our nation.
Teens and children under the age of 13 who have hung themselves in their bedrooms or shot themselves in the head because they were convinced by adults that being LGBT was wrong, that they were sick and unloved and deserved to be treated with hate and disgust, and be ostracized for something they cannot change about themselves. A choice they never made.
And now, here we are again. On the edge, faced with real and terrifying consequences of the ignorance and hatred from our fellow Americans. Here again, we have been told and shown that our voices do not matter, that we are second-class citizens, that our civil rights are undeserved. A new president who believes us unequal.
For these young people my heart breaks. I have seen and I have felt your pain. I know it first hand, and I and many others will not shut up and go away, we will not be silent. We deserve to be recognized as equal, to be treated with the same fairness and given the same benefits and opportunities as everyone else.
Marriage equality, equal employment opportunities, to feel safe in public places, to be allowed to live out our daily lives and to chase after our own American dreams. This is why we fight, and this is why we will continue to fight.
Until the day dawns where all men and women and those who do not conform to any gender are equal, may our voices never fall silent.