As someone who’s been living in quite a closed minded place when it came to most things liberal socially, I was not exposed to homosexuality until I was around 10 and I was on a flight to Singapore. I watched an episode of Glee and within the first 3 minutes there was a male character kissing another male character. That was how unexposed I was to the LGBTQ+ community. Flash forward 7 years later and I am proudly an ally of this beautiful community.
As the years grew, the acceptance and exposure of the LGBTQ+ community grew as well. I always think those who have struggled to come to terms with their identity because it opposed the norms of society are some of the bravest people in the world. Challenging norms isn’t easy because you face backlash, stigma and possibility of being ostracized by not only society but from your family as well. I’ve always thought of people who weren’t heterosexual having to come out is ridiculous. Why do people have to seek approval for being who they are? Sexuality is not a choice.
12th June 2016, 49 people were killed in Orlando inside Pulse; a gay nightclub. They were hosting a latino night so most of the victims were latino gay men. Not only were people targeted for their sexuality but for their race as well. What kind of world do we live in where people aren’t free to be who they are and love who they want. This attack happened almost exactly a year ago and several of the 49 parents of the victims were asked how they would like to see love and kindness shown on June 12 and despite it being June 13, it is never too late to act out of love and kindness especially in remembrance of those who lost their lives during the night of the shooting.
For those who aren’t entirely sure what the acronyms of LGBTQIA+ are, here they are:
Q: Queer or Questioning
A: Aesexual and/orAromantic (includes the grey-asexuality, demisexuality etc)
The “+” includes all other queer identities that have not already been mentioned, such as pansexuality and polysexuality
Recently Taiwan is the first place in Asia to recognize same-sex marriage and could possibly become the first Asian country to enable same-sex marriage in 2 years time. I can only hope this will set a precedent for the rest of Asia.
When I envision the future I envision a place full of peace. I imagine oppression and terrorism were words left in the past and I imagine a place full of happiness and empowerment. A place where people get equal opportunities based on their capability not factors such as gender and sexuality.
love wins xx