Friday, 29 November 2013

The value of Straight Allies ...

I was recently asked to comment on a piece of writing about reforming the Church's views on the LGBT community, and replied as follows.  I thought I'd offer it on here as an encouragement to stay involved.

As a gay person in the Church, I find that it becomes so tiring fighting for the right to simply be, that it often becomes fairly impossible to engage in any useful way in theological discussions about the matter.

People forget (or, if I'm being generous, don't know), that this is an issue of human identity; that sexual identity issues are at the very core of who you are, not a simple matter of "keep it in your trousers".  It's about who you love, how you interpret your place in society, your gifts and talents, what influences your interests and decision-making, and how you express yourself, and so much more ... that to be reduced to a mere extension of your genitals is dehumanising, devaluing, and robs you of the opportunity to engage as an equal partner in discussions about your place in society.

So, to be caught on the back foot all the time, defending your right to participate in the discussion, is exhausting, and can leave you too exhausted to play any useful part.  For this reason, the value of allies of the LGBT (and Q and I) community cannot be overstated, and we desperately need more.

You don't have to be Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual, Queer, Questioning, Intersex or indeed even Asexual to be engaging in the discussions about bringing change and equality in our communities and institutions.  Thank you to all the straight allies that are engaged ... please keep it up.  We need your voice.

Image from this page.

Here's a link to download the Stonewall guide about Straight Allies.
A link to download the PFLAG guide about Straight Allies.
The Wikipedia article about Straight Allies