First, on a serious note. Early last Sunday morning, a gunman burst into a popular gay bar in Orlando and opened fire with an AR-15, killing 49 people and wounding 53 others before being killed by the police. This is the worst mass shooting in American history by a single gunman, and LGBTQ people, specifically LGBTQ people of color, were explicitly targeted. All people were struck by the scale of this tragedy, but personally, it has hit me hard. Mass shootings are always more terrifying when you can see yourself in the people who were killed.
It can be hard and scary to be visible. A lot of queer people spend much of their adolescence, and sometimes much of their lives, hiding a big part of their identity. For me, even now that I'm fully and totally out, I'm faced with a lot of daily situations in which I have to make a choice between hiding a part of myself and coming out to a person I don't know very well. Sometimes I don't have the energy, sometimes I genuinely feel it's none of their business, and sometimes I feel I have reason to fear for my safety.Read More