Welcome to Unabridged Andra's LGBT Tuesday!
This is a weekly meme designed to foster discussion about books that have LGBT main characters, or prominent side characters, and have LGBT themes in them. It is my hope that by reading about of LGBT people, a better understanding, empathy, and compassion will start to exist in the mainstream culture. Each week, there will be a discussion post that deals with issues from the LGBT community, some info on what's going on in the real-world with LGBT issues, and reviews of a book that I've read that has something to cool to bring to the table. I also have a few of my awesome gay friends popping in from time to time to make their fabulous presence known. Rcmember to link up YOUR reviews of LGBT books, and I will go check them out!Hi guys, so for this edition of LGBT Tuesday, I'm going to get up on my soapbox a bit. I typically try to stay off it and let the books do the
I'm not hating on my brother-in-law, but this kind of behavior is SO ignorant and very destructive. The "head in the sand" style of parenting is not helping Sarah at all. By not speaking openly in their home about gay people and topics, my dear family is accidentally turning the concept of gays and lesbians into a taboo subject. When something is taboo and just not talked about, it makes children view it as bad or wrong. Just like a teenager who isn't allowed to talk about sex and relationships at home views sex with a combination of fear, anxiety, and guilt-- when being gay, or just gay people in general are declared "improper topics", that also sends the message to a child that gays are people who are "different" and "improper". Instead of having someone's sexuality being a simple trait, like I am blonde, or Josh has hazel eyes, someone who is gay is to be feared, ostracized, and in general viewed as something "not normal". Although I was really uneasy when all of this was taking place, I didn't speak up for fear of getting my head bitten off and getting the whole lecture about, "Don't you tell me how to raise my kids...yada, yada, yada..." So I just bit my tongue and just watched Modern Family with my headphones in...
Also, it's worth noting how much more widely accepted gay people are in pop culture. In two weeks, there were three different shows that had prominently featured gay characters, and we BARELY watched TV while we were in DC. That's the fact about gays and lesbians. They exist! Just because you don't talk about LGBT issues at home doesn't mean the kids aren't assaulted by visuals on a daily basis. If they don't get an understanding about what it means to be gay from their parents, they are going to pick up on what other kids say, and that puts them at risk for picking up homophobic tendencies like my niece got from her friends and school. If you support gay rights, why in the WORLD would you want to leave it up to a ten-year-old to tell your child about effective and productive marital relationships? What do you think is going to happen if someone in their school comes out as gay? Will they welcome him or her with open arms because being gay is fine...or will they say, "Ewwww" and make that child feel bad? Or even worse, will they bully him or her because she is different? And on another level, what if Sarah is actually a lesbian? What kind of message is ignoring her questions sending to her at a such a young age? She is being taught to shut up, to keep her thoughts to herself, and not be "weird". This is the kind of treatment that would eventually lend itself to depression, even suicide if she were a lesbian and didn't feel like she could talk about it even to those who are closest to her. It's just that, in today's modern world with all kinds of new families springing up, no parenting option, different types of marriage, etc should be taboo.
If I have ruffled any feathers, please smooth them back into place. I am entitled to my opinion like anyone else, and hope that maybe this article has delivered some clarity or food for thought. I had some thoughts on the subject and I thought it would be a good discussion to have with readers and followers. I will now gladly get down from my soapbox, and open up the floor for discussion to anyone who chooses to do so. Remember that only kind words, or constructive criticism is accepted here.
Next week's Topic of Discussion: Favorite Gay Characters is Movies and TV! :)
Are you an author of a really AWESOME LGBT themed book? Are you a reader or follower who has read a groundbreaking LGBT novel? Let me know! Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, because I am ALWAYS looking for new books to read! If you have written a book with LGBT characters or themes, you can be featured on LGBT Tuesday in an interview or guest post. Just let me know what you would have time for, and we will get things rolling!