So…with all the news swirling around about inequality and inequities shown to our fellow man (or woman), I want you to ask yourself…Are you proud of you? Think about that question before you jump in, because being proud of yourself is an important thing today, but many think it has to deal with some major accomplishment. It doesn’t. It can be something as simple as being proud of yourself for treating all people with kindness, understanding and respect. The lesson in that idea, is life changing, and a life skill that can be handed down to your next generation. Some times it’s hard to change your views, especially if those views have been very important to you or you’ve had them for a very long time. But you have made the decision to open your heart and understand people that are different than you, and that is commendable. Good job!
Well…Gay Pride month has kicked off in cities around the country. The purpose of the commemorative month is to recognize the impact that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals have had on history locally, nationally, and internationally. This wonderful celebration is chock full of parades, costumes, great food and great fun! It celebrates the liberation of people, some who have lived in the shadows for decades, whose major goal has been the right to love.
Now what in the world is wrong with that?
In the United States, same-sex marriage is recognized by the federal government and has been legalized in 36 U.S. states. More than 70% of the population live in states that recognize same sex unions. Well we’ve come a long way from Brokeback Mountain, and it is heartwarming to see older, loving couples, who have had to hide their relationships for decades in fear of public retribution. Times are a changing!
While many of us are embracing the evolution, there are still folks that don’t mind their manners on the matter…Iggy Azalea cancelled her Pittsburgh Pride concert, just last night, based on the uproar against her recent percieved homophobic and racists tweets.
But with major sports figures like Michael Sam and Bruce Jenner or power people like Ellen DeGeneres or Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO revealing their true selves, it helps to offer strength to the rest of LBGT community.
So we wanted to offer some ways to show your manners in the midst of diversity.
- Don’t make assumptions… Forget about stereotypes; they almost always do not apply. Not all gay men know how to cook, wear tight clothes, and love to shop or sing along with old show tunes. Not every lesbian has short hair and drive a Subaru. People present in all kinds of way so asking open ended questions can help ease awkward moments.
- People are forgetful by nature, so once again, don’t assume malice or disinterest if something is forgotten. Help out by reminding people who you are.
- If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all… my mother brought me up with this mantra. So many people in the 4G world have forgotten this simple kindness.
- Learn that gay men and lesbians are no different from any other group of people. They have dreams and goals, and want to be happy and lead productive lives. The more time you spend around gay and lesbian people, the more you realize that they’re just people, the same as you.
- Do not out your gay friends to others, respecting their privacy at all times. Outing them may put them in harms way, or make them vulnerable to discrimination from others whether it be in the workplace or for housing or other basic services
- Maintain and open mind and open heart! Attend a Pride parade. My dear friend and I happened on the Pride parade in New York City a few years ago…it was festive, irreverent, educational, loving, peaceful and really fun!
Come together for the better!
Lisa and Demetria
Co-Founders Mother, May I… Etiquette Experts