Let’s extend Pride through November

Every year at about this time, our community enjoys the excitement and fellowship of Pride.

Pride celebrations across the country continue throughout the summer. The collective attitude and acceptance raise spirits, and raise awareness of our community’s strengths and, well, our fabulosity.

But do you ever wonder: How can we keep it going?

I do. And that question usually translates to year-round support for our community’s continued progress. Supporting one another. Fighting off ridiculous attacks on our civil rights, often disguised as the “religious liberty” of others.

If you could harness the positive energy generated during Pride festivals, and push it toward one or two goals, it’d move mountains. The hundreds of thousands of volunteer hours required to stage these Pride festivals can be leveraged to achieve much.

How to channel that energy? I’ll settle for this: Vote.

Vote for Hillary.  I can’t type or even purse my lips to form the words “Vote for Trump,” but if you’re so inclined, knock yourself out.

Because we’re incredibly lazy when it comes to civic responsibility. Our community worked hard to defeat a hateful Constitutional Amendment over two years ago – a hard-fought effort that barely escaped a statewide referendum. Then, within a short period of time, we won amazing court victories which fused hope and change into incredible results.

Yet, we seem to disconnect when it comes to active participation in the political process. You all know someone in this category: “I don’t trust the politicians.”  Or: “My vote doesn’t make a difference.”

There are examples everywhere that demonstrate the power of one vote. It gets a little tiresome to recite them, and you get tired of hearing them.

If you’re playing the home version of this game, you’ve already said to yourself, “Yeah, I know someone who thinks like that.”  Here are a few reasons your vote is important this November:

• Our Supreme Court is one Justice short because the current Senate won’t give the President another chance at SCOTUS.  A Justice died, and isn’t replaced, because over half of our Senators want to pout.

• We’ll also elect a President, of course, and while that process is almost finished with both major parties, at press time it’s not official yet. But it will be – soon. Your vote is needed.

• We’re also electing a governor, 100 state representatives and half the Senate. If you want four more years of RFRA religious-right pandering, then ignore your civic duty, stay home and tune out.

All the love and acceptance and energy you feel at one of our state’s Pride festivals – can you just harness that through November? I promise it won’t hurt.

Prod someone you know.  Drag them to the polls.  First, of course, make sure they’re registered.  It’s easy; so easy, that you can do it online. So there’s literally no excuse.

Spread and honor the Pride spirit by stocking your toe in the election stream. Jump in. The water’s fine.

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