Wednesday, June 24, 2015

It's confusing ...

My ATM encourages me to celebrate gay pride.

I remain a little bemused by this development. Happy about it, of course. It is nice being affirmed.

But I remember all too well when to be visible as gay or lesbian was to risk verbal abuse and even violence.

These days, our visibility is a sign to urban U.S. liberals that, despite so many indications to the contrary, this country eventually gets it right. In San Francisco, we swim in a warm bath of loving approval and liberal self-satisfaction.

San Franciscans know there are intolerant regions out there somewhere in the U.S. hinterland. In those places, gay kids get thrown out of their families. (They still migrate to San Francisco; without money, they live hard lives.) In those places, it is still tough for gay immigrants and for gay couples of color (because most everywhere, it is tough for ALL immigrants and people of color.) In those places, trans-folk who are visible have a hard time getting and keeping jobs. (That's too often true here too, but we don't think much about it.)

We've come a long way; and the big "we" that really includes everyone hasn't yet come as far as it should. It's confusing and also good.

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