I’m done playing nice.

a reaction to the shooting at Pulse, Calum McSwiggan being gay-bashed, and familial bigotry

Re-posting here a Facebook post I made just now:

I woke up this morning to a number of tweets and a horrifying Instagram informing me that one of my favorite Gay YouTubers was gay bashed yesterday. A group of violent thugs targeted him through his social media, followed he and his friends as they went out for the evening, and then picked him off when he became isolated from the group. He has stitches, broken teeth…
And when the police finally showed up, they continued the victimization by treating him like he was subhuman.

I switched from Twitter to Facebook, because Facebook is generally where I connect with my friends and family. At the top of my feed I find a hateful article – shared by my own father – wherein the author laments that it’s no longer enough to avert his eyes and tolerate gay people (that’s code for ignoring violence against us, denying us housing, denying us employment and generally treating us like shit) – he now has to deal with trans and gender non-binary people, too!

This is what it is like being a member of the LGBTQ+ community. Every day, all around us, there are people questioning our right to live our own lives, questioning why they should have to treat us like human beings, questioning whether or not we need protection from the ones who will take it beyond questioning into overt prejudice and violence.

Most days, we just ignore them. Most days we just carry on, trying to prove them wrong by just being awesome, hoping that none of them get angry enough to actually lash out in some way. We isolate ourselves from as much of the world as we can, within a protective bubble of supporting friends and allies, in the few (theoretically) safe spaces we know (like Pulse in Orlando).

I’m done. I’m done trying to prove to everyone that I deserve to be treated like a human because I’m smart and hard working and fun. I’m done ignoring the subtle slights, the religious posturing, and the support for politicians who would make me and my people’s lives even worse than they are now.

Consider yourselves on notice. Every time you pull garbage like my dad, John Akins, pulled this morning, I will tag you in the comments of this post. I will call you out on your bigotry. I will call you out when you support politicians who will literally make me and my people’s lives less safe.

I suspect quite a few people will unfriend me. Some will block me. Some will argue with me, angrily, insisting that they are just exercising their rights to free speech and religion, when they’re really demanding freedom from the consequences of being a bigot. They’ll still get tagged here, in this public post, because I am done.
And because I’m not the NSA/TSA/FBI/CIA, a sincere apology will get your tag removed (but bigot-up again and you go right back on the list).