We are getting together on Wednesday at 11am at the SLLU. If you cannot make you can also send your ideas for the group. It would be fun to have you there!
You do not have to be gay, lesbian, bisexual, or even transgendered. Advocates, friends, and family members are also welcome. Advocates for the community are always needed and welcome.
5 Quick things you can do to help.
1. This week do not laugh at that horrible joke the homophobic jerk at work tells that joke that makes you sick. Instead, call his butt out! Tell him how much damage that joke causes and how you are not going to listen to his humor anymore. But, feel sympathy for him. Chances are the reasons he is so angry is because he has not come to terms with his own sexuality. Perhaps that joke is the way for him to cover up the pain of never being able to be with the man he loves.
2. When someone is about to say something homophobic they often prelude the statement by saying "some of my best friends are gay..but I have to tell you." Stop them before they finish that thought and say something terribly sad...Debbie Downer sad such "you know, in the time it took you to say that two children died of hunger." Soon, they will be trained on a subconscious level when they start to say something homophobic they will get a sad response.
3. Put a rainbow bumper sticker on your car or if you are a supporter how about a PFLAG sticker on your car. This seems like something insignificant, but it lets people know the GLBT and PFLAG community is not ashamed because there is no reason to be. But remember there is a difference between tasteful decor and just all and out tacky. Do not wear your Gay Pride Parade clothing to work and do not paint your entire car with rainbow stripes.
4. Come out. I say this BUT there are exceptions to this and everyone has their own personal time line. If you truly feel that your life will be in danger from doing this, not a good idea. For instance, not a good idea if you live in Uganda where you are in serous danger from announcing you like to date those of the same sex. The thing is, the more of us that are out and proud the better. This does not mean you have to have a full on Gay Pride parade in your back ally or that you have to fly a rainbow flag from your front porch. Sometimes, it is good to be out there and just to be.
5. Spread the word! If individuals are not tolerant or hate the GLBT community find ways to talk to them, to reason with them, and to humanize those within the community to them. If they are tolerant of the GLBT community ask them to go further, ask them to be accepting. If they are on the boarder line then get them drunk and bring them to your local GLBT bar and show them a good time. KIDDING! The point is to always push ourselves and those around us to understand, empathize, and work towards being better people to ourselves and others.