When Will It Get Better?

October 5, 2010 at 12:08 4 comments

I have a friend who was once attacked by a group of men outside of a gay bar.

She says the men stopped when, in the midst of their blows and slurs, they realized that she was a woman. The slurs turned to jeers and when she felt their grip on her loosen in surprise and amusement she broke free and ran home.

She tried to laugh it off. She put on a brave face and shrugged at any mention of the incident. By the time you’re out of high school it’s the default reaction. Act tough, smile pretty, rise above, it will get better.

Her attack was one of several by the same men targeting gay men leaving that same bar. It was quite a few years ago, but they were neither the first, nor the last, neither the least, nor the worst of these kinds of attacks outside that very bar, the only bar of it’s kind in this community.

When I heard about the recent suicide deaths of gay teens across the United States, and the resulting out cry to teens like them that ‘it will get better’ my mind flashed to myself: 15 and in love but both of us too scarred to admit that it was anything more than harmless experimenting, too scarred to do anything that would label us and make us targets. I flashed to my friend; cornered and scared in that ally, fighting for her life.  I think of these things and all I can think is when.

When will it get better?

When will the hatred and cruelty and Dehumanizing end? When will LGBT couples be recognized and afforded the same rights as heterosexual couples? When will LGBT people be allowed to live freely and openly no matter what their profession? When will the ‘alternative’ LGBT lifestyle be awarded more consideration and respect than flamboyant pantomimes on prime time?

When will cowardice men stop hiding together in allies waiting to extinguish all that they have been taught to hate about themselves? Which generation will it be that finally breaks free of the learned hate & teaches the next to be peaceful and accepting?

The bullying, unfortunately, doesn’t end at the doors of high school. It is institutionalized, it is engrained, it is everywhere. Maybe our capacity to deal with it gets better, maybe we find a little more power in our lives, more independence and control and feel a little more at home in our own skins. But the bullying doesn’t end with high school.

We keep saying it will get better but people are dying and I am tired of waiting.

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Entry filed under: cyber bullying, LGBT.

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Malcolm+  |  October 6, 2010 at 00:46

    Evil will not triumph.

    http://simplemassingpriest.blogspot.com/2010/10/when-will-it-get-better.html

    Reply
  • 2. JCF  |  October 6, 2010 at 16:13

    Hella tired.

    God, bring us JUSTICE! (Well, and mercy, too)

    Reply
  • 3. Malcolm+  |  October 6, 2010 at 22:02

    A link from the Mad Priest – very impressive. But caution, sweetie. He usually uses that adjective to refer to women he thinks should become bishops.

    Reply
  • 4. jimB  |  October 7, 2010 at 10:22

    I want to say something like, “Jesus and justice are changing the world” but I am not sure anyone including me would believe it.

    Things will get slightly better in the US if Congress manages to repeal “don’t ask don’t tell.” But I am not holding my breath.

    Things are already slightly better in Europe, but the dark night of sharia law is looming there.

    About all we can do is keep working for better. We do not know when or how it will come. But we can make things a little better where we are if we cry justice to power. It is not enough but it is what we can do.

    FWIW
    jimB

    Reply

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