Waking Up and Taking Action at HRC’s 2014 Equality Convention
March 21, 2014 by Guest contributor
The following post comes from HRC volunteer Mel Senecal:
I recently joined the HRC’s Membership Outreach team for Greater NY. By recently, I mean my enthusiastic and clever team invited me to a “fun” weekend in DC this past Friday, they handed me this and I sat in a lot of workshops. I might have been bamboozled into joining, but I am grateful for it. HRC woke me up from my “We just won a Supreme Court case, so we’re cool!” coma this past weekend.
At one point during the weekend, HRC President Chad Griffin told us a story of single mother of five being evicted in Alabama. Not because she had wild parties or because she wasn’t paying her rent, just because she was gay. I swear there were points during this story I thought he was lying to me. That’s how much of a NYC bubble I was in; I had no idea how ridiculous the rest of my country could be.
My team members failed to mention that crying into my food would be a part of this convention. There was a special panel on international LGBT equality, featuring Dane Lewis and Caleb Orozco, LGBT activists from Jamaica and Belize. Dane told a story about a young man who was stabbed, shot and run over by car and whose family wouldn’t claim his body. At one point the host asked Caleb why he even wasted his time being an activist if he knew the risk he was taking. He said he was “already being insulted, ridiculed and threatened for doing nothing,” so he might as well just do something.
I don’t ask my readers for much, except maybe helping me choose the color of wall paint. But after this weekend I ask this: please make a donation to HRC, so that maybe someday everyone can live in my bubble. It’s really nice in here.