Last Tuesday Rosie and I had the opportunity to check out The Out List at the NYC premiere – it was great!
I was honored and pleased to be part of a human tapestry of stories that tell the stories of LGBTQ Americans.
And there are many more that need to be told – that is certain.
The next day, I woke up to a sobering reality (uhh, a little late here Wazina) that the documentary would be seen not just by people in my circle or just the folks at the premiere… but by people all over. And more than that, it would be viewed by people who, let’s put on pause the part about never having met someone (out) about a sexual orientation other than hetero – they may have never interacted with a black person before and in my case, a Muslim or an Afghan person.
I mean, really, that is possible.
It boggles my mind and really, it doesn’t at all either.
The limited caricatures of us (whoever we are) on CNN or Fox News… or whatever a person’s source may be all they have to go with. We cannot let that be. We must alter realities to match the truth!
I’ve been remarking with Laura Marie (or LoMo) that there is a need for an Out List in 2013.
And then, I am reminded that there is a need.
…on Tuesday night (June 18th) I started scribbling this down before the premiere. I wanted to elaborate, work on it more/differently but I figured I should get it out because I’ll just keep sitting on it:
tonight is a benchmark
in our collective struggle
striving & thriving
because an Out List is still necessary.
a point for me
for the parts of me that are palatable,
We need a ___ List
because brown people darker than me
more Muslim than me
get looked at stone cold and hard.
because there are men behind walls who look like them
and having nothing to do with them
are behind gates with no end in sight.
with no one to look warmly and lovingly their way
please don’t forget what a loving smile feels like.
peoples living out sentences that have never been issued
within false borders
so that we
in new york city/baghdad/istanbul/west bank/chicago/-istan
are still enemy:
surveillanced as enemy
internalized as enemy.
this moment is a benchmark.
With this said, I will say, I am proud and I am not done.