Living out loud: On being the epicenter of everyday change

I had the opportunity to interview Bishop Gene Robinson today and it was an interesting and inspiring conversation. For those who have never heard of him, he is the first openly gay bishop of the Episcopal church and the author of several books including his latest, God Believes in Love: Straight Talk about Gay Marriage.

Thinking about my conversation with Bishop Robinson, it occurs to me that the most radical thing we can do is to be an example to others. I don’t mean in a preachy, judgmental way. But just to live and be who we are can be a radical, brave, powerful act. When we live our lives openly — despite pushback or even danger — we are creating micro-revolutionary moments in people’s lives.

When LGBT people come out and live openly, it challenges the stereotypes and false “conventional wisdom” that hold some people back from acceptance and understanding. I see my work and life as an outspoken feminist in much the same way. I “came out” as a survivor of sexual abuse because I do not need to live in shame or fear. I speak for fellow survivors because I know how hard it is to speak and that we are not all ready to do that. When people meet me and hear my story, they can no longer say they have never met a survivor of sexualized violence.

I fight for my own equality to have access to all forms of health care, equal pay, and an end to oppressive systems that limit my life and experience because of my gender identity. I do that openly because living out loud causes people to reconsider what they hold to be true, just as others sharing their experiences with me continues to enlighten me all the time. Big events do shape the world, but I am more convinced than ever that it is the small, everyday life events that really create ground-level change.

Here’s to the courage in all of us to be hope for someone else.

One comment

  1. Stop Oppression of Women in the Third World

    We are a new organization that is committed to stopping the oppression of women in the third world countries.

    Women in the Third World suffer considerably from the following problems:

    -daily domestic violence

    -brutal rape and torture

    -patriarchal culture without any moderation

    -abusive men

    -honor killings

    -forced poverty and are unable to free themselves since women are considered as property, not human beings, in many third world countries

    We are committed to trying to END this oppression. One of our goals is to create a political lobby or organization that lobbies for visas for single or divorced women from third world countries, so that we can bring them to the West and help them escape the abuse, rape, poverty, and violence of the patriarchal system in most third world countries.

    If you are interesting in helping out by donating, or web designing, or campaigning for us, please drop me a line at sowtw1987 AT hotmail DOT com

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