I need a future to be present.
"When I came out, my mom said "Duh! Now did you finish your homework!" Tina Garcia, age 16.
"When I realized I was gay, I assumed I would either be killed, shunned or silent...that's just how it was back then." Gary White Feather, 68.
"I intend to live, not just exist" George Takei, 81
It is often said that to move forward we must first look back. This could be debated, but we are reminded of those who took tremendous risks to rattle social norms that suppressed the life and love of people across our country and the world. Now, more than 50 years after the historic Stonewall Rebellion, LGBT folks have a collective and individual voice. Yes, there are places in this country where homophobia and transphobia are rampent, but our overall place in culture is stable and recognized...a BIG difference from 1969! There is no irony though that some, within each of the groups that were represented on Christopher Street as bottles flew and guns discharged, are degrading, suppressing or segregating. Maybe history/herstory/thestory is leading in that direction but we can change the course. We all share similarities and differences. If we search for and engage with the parts that alike, we have the opportunity to connect and be more cohesive. Jus' sayin'.
"Adaptability is not imitation. It means power of resistance and assimilation."
Growing up, some/many of us experienced great prejudice, violence and separation. These experiences stay with us and hopefully, in time, integrate into our lives. In 2018-19 we look forward to a shift in consciousness around sexuality, gender expression and families where people can live, love and express their lives in a healthy, accepted way. Cultures are like kids...it takes them awhile to grow up. Grade-schoolers are notoriously mean and often times create more of a clique culture in high school. However, as these kids graduate and go into jobs, families or college, they begin to see the benefits of more inclusive environments. Priorities change and the need for more community emerges as responsibilities begin to mount. So how does this relate to LGBTG folks or any of us here in Santa Fe?
PRIDE Santa Fe has the radical notion that we are actually more similar that we are different and celebrates the MANY ways we all express ourselves (culturally, through sexuality, family structures ect) and challenge our larger community to be more inclusive. There is ongoing debate that when marginalized communities integrate into dominant culture, they assimilate and loose their individual identities. Some folks disagree, saying that inclusion actually benefits the larger culture as these communities share their stories and their lives. This can help to create a richer, more diverse dominant culture and paving the way for acceptance of smaller communities that have struggled for recognition.
We at PRIDE Santa Fe embrace, cherish and cultivate the MANY lives and voices in Sante Fe, New Mexico.