So This Is A Thing I Noticed About This Blog

Originally this blog was supposed to be a mix of feminism and LGBTQ issues, and to some extent it has lived up to this.

To some extent.

But really, I think we all know that in the last couple of weeks/months I have sort of dropped the ball on this.  It’s not that I”m saying I was ever really really on top of this, but I had been better about it.  So I’m just going to say, as a person who meant to cover those issues, I am really sorry that I’ve been failing at this.

That said, there are probably reasons WHY I have been less on top of this than I maybe should have been.  The first is that there has been so much legislation pertaining to women’s rights and women’s issues that I have chosen to blog about, and as a consequence, I have  been more focused on this.  On top of that, I have been really preoccupied with the issue of sexual violence as I have transitioned to volunteering as a rape crisis counselor, and this has also caused me to focus on issues other than the LGBTQ issues I said I would focus on.  And lastly, and this is actually the one I feel I should be apologizing for , because the issues pertaining to women’s rights and women’s health impact me more directly, I have ended up focusing on those and letting slip issues I care about but which do not directly impact me.

And that’s a real shame.  People forget to care about all the issues that DON’T impact them directly, and minority groups end up not having the allies they need.  Now, I talked a bit about LGBTQ issues when I discussed VAWA in this post, and I talked about them when I covered courts challenging DOMA here, with a few other posts that dealt with or mentioned LGBTQ issues in between, but realistically speaking, I haven’t been giving enough coverage because I haven’t been paying enough attention.  That’s crappy ally work.

This isn’t really my little pity party post where I tell you I’m so sorry and I’ll be way more on top of things.  This is actually a post about the need to be an ally.  For all of us to be better allies.  To care about issues that impact people other than ourselves.

Can you imagine if only women gave a crap about women’s issues, when only 17% of Congress is female?  That would be a real crisis in terms of trying to uphold women’s rights.  But this is a problem when we talk about minority communities, especially sexual minorities like the LGB community, and gender minorities like the trans community.  They are small groups of people, but that doesn’t change the whole “rights” thing…and that means that people outside of those communities who recognize that these people ARE PEOPLE and deserve these rights and deserve acceptance by society have to be a part of the fight to change it.  Just as white people had to be part of the civil rights movement and we need male allies to help feminism and we certainly will never end rape culture without them, we also need straight and cis allies helping the LGBTQ community.  Because there are more of us.

And that means we have to be paying attention.  Can we be honest?  We should be paying attention anyway.  A country ought be defined not just by the strength of its economy or the size of its military, but by its quality of life and by how minorities are treated.  This America that we live in, that tries to take away the rights of racial minorities and sexual minorities and yes, also women, is not the land of freedom and equality that I’m pretty sure our pledge of allegiance promised me.  That’s not the America you were promised either.  So wake up.  This is not a land of equality yet.  This is a land of bigotry and homophobia and racism and transphobia and heteronormativity.   This is a country that has let hate be a guideline for way too long.  And unless people are calling out the people in charge, unless people are making noise and pointing out problems, we’ll never get this fixed.

But you can’t fix the problem you don’t realize is there.

So I’m going to try to be more on top of this.  To check the news more for these issues.  To keep track of court cases and incidents as they come up.

But in the meantime, if any of our readers feels strongly about this and wants to help out and contribute, I would be more than happy to take a look at submissions.  I’m doing the best I can over here, but the more voices we have going, the better the dialogue we’re going to get either way.

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~ by Randi Saunders on August 29, 2012.

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