Pride Month is still in full swing. It is a time for the world’s LGBTQ+ communities and their allies to come together to celebrate the many battles they have won to be accepted for who they are and to be treated equally under the law.
Yet, while we celebrate, state legislatures across the US are attacking the LGBTQ+ community with astonishing intensity. Human Rights Campaign reports that during this current legislative session over 525 state bills have been introduced that attack the LGBTQ+ community. More than 70 of those bills have already become law and many of them focus on regulating curriculum in public schools, including discussions around gender identity and sexuality and prohibiting access to health care for transgender youth.
Dehumanization is the denial of full humanity in others and the cruelty and suffering that accompany it. It happens when we fail to see another’s humanity so that we don’t see the need to treat them as we ourselves wish to be treated. Dehumanization heralded the genocide of native populations throughout North America and in places like Australia and New Zealand. Dehumanization laid the foundation for the enslavement of millions of Africans over many centuries. Dehumanization fueled the fires of the Holocaust. Dehumanization turns our fears into hatred, prevents us from seeking truth and propels us to vile, despicable, inhumane speech and behavior. of hate crime is now motivated by anti-LGBTQ+ bias.
When we weaponize the law to deny members of the LGBTQ+ community their full humanity, we dehumanize them. When we fail to speak or be an ally we dehumanize them. We are human first. Whatever our backgrounds or our beliefs, perspectives or differences, if we start there, we can avoid much despair.
Stay abreast of LGBTQ+ legislative action/Find Resources
2 Parenting for the Future Episodes with 2 LGBTQ+ Parent Heroes
Mimi Lemay, author of “What we will become: A Mother, a Son, and a Journey of Transformation
Richie Jackson, author of Gay Like Me: A Father Writes to his Son