Central PA's LGBT News Source


Show off your assets!

By Frank Pizzoli

These are tough times. LGBT people around the country face a climate of uncertainty, discrimination, and fear that imperils the progress towards equality for which we have fought for many years.

In spite of the political climate, we are a resilient people. This we know. Each generation who has stood on the shoulders of the previous generation – and then, in turn, became strong shoulders for the next – knows this to be true.

We should always remember to show off our assets. We have so many. Yet so many of our adversaries, and well-meaning allies, only speak of us in terms of our deficits. They now have us doing it to ourselves.

If you look at a lot of the programs offered in our community at local, state, and national levels, we don’t seem so resilient. In the last several months, I’ve found myself reading emails alerting me to programs on the dangers of this, that and the other thing if one is a member of the LGBT community.

I’ve asked myself, and friends and long-time allies: Are there any happy LGBT people? Of course there are. Maybe we don’t see them at this, that or the other event because they’re so happy living life, they don’t have time for us. We’re too whiney for them. They get a headache. They’d rather not.

I am not denying or underestimating the level of renewed hate and violence against our community. We publish stories and in-depth analysis on the state of affairs six times a year from local, state, national, and international perspectives.

I am well aware of the plight of our brothers and sister in Eastern Europe, Russia, Chechnya, and Asian nations. We cover that too, often with direct sourcing.

In addition to these challenges – and threats to our lives and what seems like our very existence – we have assets. These assets will keep us loving and alive.

If you’re young and bullied, speak up. Demand respect. Make some noise in a respectful way that will accomplish something.

If you’re elderly and fear being discriminated against in a nursing home or retirement village, same as above.

Always remember that those who hate and do violence to us need an “other” in their life in ways they do not understand. Our assets will disarm them.