So this is LGBT month. President Obama signed the proclamation yesterday officially making June 2016 Pride month. It’s not the first time, of course … Pres. Clinton was the first to mark Pride month waaaay back in 2000. (Back then, it was just Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.) And then we didn’t mark it for eight years (not pointing any fingers here, but a different party was in office during that period), until Obama got it going again in 2009. His proclamation yesterday included this:
I urge the Congress to enact legislation that builds upon the progress we have made, because no one should live in fear of losing their job simply because of who they are or who they love.
This is paramount, in my mind. It’s about more than bathrooms and who can marry whom. Those are important topics, for sure, and I’ve blogged about them plenty. (Actually, I haven’t blogged so much about marriage equality. Look for that topic coming soon.) But that particular sentence … “fear of losing their job simply because of who they are or who they love” … that one kicked me in the gut.
Of course we’ve all heard about the military’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. In my naivete, I didn’t think much beyond the military when it comes to those who choose an alternative lifestyle. Someone you know is LGBT. Maybe it’s family, or a friend, or a co-worker, they’re gay or trans. So what? It has no impact on how well they perform at work or whether they’re capable of carrying out their duties. Why in the world should they fear being without a paycheck because of being gay, lesbian, or trans?
I’m glad that we have a month to celebrate LGBT Pride. I also hate that it’s necessary. If we could just accept each other for who we are, we could all feel pride all the time and wouldn’t need a special presidential proclamation to mark it. When I rule the world… 😉
Until then, I’ll just be glad I have a good job. And because I’m straight and CIS, I’ll thank my lucky stars I don’t have to worry about losing it based on who I am or who I love.