Saturday, October 16, 2010

does it get better?

Is the It Gets Better project anything more than a feel-good panacea, diverting energy away from real activism for BGLT rights? Alana Smith blogs that for some (too many!), their lives will likely *not* get better. Smith also links to Zoe Melisa's ten points against the Dan Savage-inspired YouTube channel, where many different people and groups encourage bisexual, gay, lesbian and transgender youth to refrain from suicide, and soldier on, because "it gets better."

Smith decides that this "activism or encouragment" is a false choice; that we need to do both. She concludes, "The hard truth is that whether we are fighting an oppressive social system or struggling with an oppressive psychological problem, it is going to take a lot of hard work for things to get any better – but a diet of hard truths and tireless struggle must be supplemented with gentle compassion and hope. Political victories are absolutely essential, but no less necessary for our survival is something as simple as an occasional hand on our shoulder and someone saying, 'I know just how you feel.' It Gets Better found a way to collectivize this personal gesture, and without mistaking it for a political program, I’d like to say that I’m grateful for it."

So, let us contine the struggle. And in the meantime, may we draw strength from such performances as the Chicago Gay Men's Chorus' It Gets Better.
So may we be.


At 12:00 PM, Blogger Chalicechick said...

IMHO, it does get better in almost every case. These videos are directed at High School kids.

When you're out of high school, if the people who surround you are jerks, you can make friends on the other side of town or leave town entirely. If your parents are rough on you, you can move out and live with roommates or work your way through college. If you can't get a job doing something satisfying, you can get a job and then do something satisfying in your off-hours and no one gets to tell you when to go to bed. You can go to the church you want to go to and don't have to listen to guff about it. If you don't like your asshole brother, you don't really even have to ever see him and you certainly don't have to live with him.

Note that none of the above necessarily has anything to do with being gay. It has to do with having the power to run your own life, power gay kids get as well when they get older. IMHO, anyone who even questions whether it gets better has forgotten what it is like to be 15 and live with your parents.



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