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Holiday Allies 

Society’s hegemonies negatively construct dominant notions of sex, gender, and sexual orientation. Although, the gay community is an original thread in society’s fabric, paradoxically, this community encounters enormous difficulties with inclusion. If you know anything about the LGBTQIA + community, they do not need to fit in. We are one people. They are our society members, our brothers, sisters, sons, daughters, and every other iteration of relational connection. Research shows because the LGBTQIA + community does not fit into heteronormative norms they face a higher rate of rejection, loss of employment, violence, homelessness, harassment, stigma, abuse, and daily oppressive dehumanization. Can you imagine these experiences are happening to your family members? The number of individuals reporting suicidal ideation based on the way they are treated in their neighborhood, school, place of worship, and community environment, are consistently increasing.

 This communication aims to promote allyship. Most all of us understand oppression in some form as oppression is a complex and multi-dimensional process. It involves the lack, or denial of resources, rights, goods and services, and the inability to participate in the normal relationships and activities, available to most people in a society, whether in economic, social, cultural or in political arenas. We do not have to be modern-day oppressors. Despite your position on the community, respectful inclusion should be our collective aim. We do this, on a larger scale, by encouraging critical thinking, cultivating free and open inquiry, and fostering ethical values. Outside of this, every day, you can choose to take responsibility for your thinking and the direction of your kindness. Your allyship can begin within your family, your LGBTQIA + family, and their families. This year invite them to have a seat at your Thanksgiving table and remain open for them to make space at theirs. We are all wrapped up in layers of disappointment and hurt which makes it hard to see the kinship and legacy trail we are leaving behind. 

Do not wait until it is too late to offer that olive branch of inclusion and equality. I am truly thankful for you. Please take the time to learn more about how to customize and practice allyship.

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