Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Guest Post: 8 Things You Can Do to Support LGBTQ Rights

From the tremendous Jessica Rosenberg:

Angry About Prop 8?
Take Action: Eight Things You Can Do to Support LGBTQ Rights

1. Contact your mayor, governor, school bard, congressperson, senator, your post master general, and tell them you're mad about 8 and ask them what they're doing to support their LGBTQ constituents. Can you imagine, Monday morning, if we all called?

Got Money? Give it. To PFund, which gives scholarships to LGBTQ students, for instance, or to any of the excellent organizations working everyday for LGBTQ equality. Use it to support Queer business (not just the bars) and Queer artists (The LGBTQ reading series at Intermedia Arts, Outward Spiral Theater, One Voice Mixed Chorus, so many more).

Got time? Even better. Use some, one hour a month if you have it (and I know you do) to volunteer at District 202, Outfront Minnesota, the Rainbow Health Initiative, Pride Alive… so many to choose from!

Call your local high school, and see if they have a Gay Straight Alliance and what you could do to help. Think creatively. Queer Career Night, anyone?

Write a letter to the editor telling them why you went to the Prop 8 protest. Post a blog about it on Facebook, bulletin on MySpace, or start your own blog. Be the media! Age-old activist riddle: If a rally happens in a city, and no media covers it, did it really happen?

Call your family members, tell them where you were today and why, and engage them in serious discussion about this issue. Get people of every age on board.

Organize a discussion lunch at work, at church, at the bar with your friends. Yes, this can be a terrifying topic to talk about. No, nothing will ever change if we don't reach out to people who don't already agree with us, really listen to them, and talk to them with love (even if it is love that they do not return). Come out for equality.

Build an alliance. If you are part of any group (a well funded nonprofit or a knitting collective or a baby clothes store) that either works for or believes in full rights for LGBTQ people, find another group that also believes in that, see where your goals, strengths and strategies align, and where they differ. Figure out where you overlap, what you can do to help each other, and to, together, further LGBTQ rights. Yeah, this is a hard one. But damn, the imaginable rewards are endless, almost unimaginable.

{It is possible for straight people to do all of these things. It is even better when straight folks do these things! They're not expecting it from you!} --Jessica

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