I’ve tried to not comment on politics in this blog because they cause me to feel ill. But in the last 24 hours there have been some major developments in terms of anti-LGBT legislation/executive orders (aka tweets) which have made it impossible for me to focus on anything else.
The first time I really engaged with politics I was 19. I got on a bus by myself with strangers. We drove overnight straight through to Washington D.C. I attended the March for Women’s Lives. It was during the Bush administration. Now personally, after being pregnant, I could not have an abortion. Like ever. But I will die defending my right to make that choice. Because it’s my own choice and no one else’s. I have met and treated women who have history of abortions and I’ve seen it cause heartache and pain. I’ve also seen it allow a woman to live.
I make no judgements about other people’s choices. Because again, they are not my choices. Hilary Clinton spoke at that march, among many other people. She was inspiring. I was so young, and naive, and hopeful. I took a stand for something important to me at a young age with no support from anyone. I look back and I admire that bravery.
Flashforward. I married a woman.
Then our current administration came to power in the wake of Pulse. I have written about how Pulse affected my life already, so I won’t rehash it.
There are many ways politics directly influenced my life and my life decisions. The federal recognition of gay marriage not only made me feel comfortable in my own country because it finally recognized my family, but it made my taxes a hell of a lot easier to file every year. The length and the lack of paid time I received for my maternity leave is based out of laws. Our decision to proceed with a second parent adoption even though my wife and I are both on the birth certificates was due to a pending legal case in another state. Thus far the lesbians are losing and the anonymous sperm donor is winning. Just an fyi. Thanks Mississippi.
Having a white house that is full of anti-LGBT people is terrifying. Being a minority on a daily basis is already fear-inducing, but add in people who are in charge of our country who actively hate us and put forth legislation, statements, and tweets that put us down is just fucking alarming. The way the media and social media works today means there’s never a break. I am always inundated with how the new politicians in the white house are kicking the LGBT population today. It creates stress today and fear for tomorrow. I don’t like fear. It pisses me off. I am angry that I live in a country that nominated two people who inspire fear in minorities. It’s not a good feeling to sit with.
So after we moved and after #45 I channeled 19 year old me who took a bus by herself to march for a cause that meant something to me. I decided to attend our new towns democratic committee meeting. I can’t complain about the property taxes here, and the legislation there unless I do something about it. Just like I came out as a provider after Pulse, I decided to come out as a democrat after #45. The town we moved to is represented by republicans. That makes me scared too, and again angry that it makes me scared. I’ve been reluctant to go to town halls with our republican state representatives because I don’t want to know their thoughts on LGBT rights. I just feel like I can’t take another blow. But that’s not fair, because they may be pro-LGBT rights just anti-fiscal irresponsibility or whatever it is Republicans are always going on about. Sorry. That sounds judgmental.
My first move was the Democrats. And it was the Slate meeting- I didn’t know what that even meant. But I do now because somehow my name ended up on the Slate. I’m running for something. I thought I was offering my name as a place holder, but then I was signing a paper saying I was running for some board of something. I’m sort of okay with it though because I figure I can’t be scared and angry and not do anything about it.
Some people are not into politics. As a minority you can’t avoid it. Laws and polices and Supreme Court decisions shape our lives. We live and breathe it on every level because we are scared. It’s like when you drive past a car accident, you don’t want to look and see the severed head but you just have to because you can’t not look either. That’s how it is with me and the news. I don’t want to see the newest betrayal against us, but I also can’t bury my head in the sand. That’s not how I roll.
To all my LGBT folks, stay strong, we will get through this. To all my non-LGBT folks- step it up and help us. We need allies. To all the people working against us…you make me tired and sad and angry. Add hungry and that means you really don’t want to mess with me.
The democratic town committee meeting started with about forty of us standing and placing our hands on our hearts and reciting the pledge of allegiance. It was something I haven’t done since I was in high school. It felt weird but it was a moment of unity. And I needed to be reminded of the pledge.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. And to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
We must all stand for liberty and justice for all.