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We asked #AMPLIFY contributors
What is your greatest hope for the LGBTQ community in Western Pennsylvania?
Hope matters. It sustains us, it inspires us and it bonds us as a community. But hope tempered with truth is even more vital. We can’t dream or wish away the impact of racism on the LGBTQ community, the movement, the accomplishments and the day to day lives of our actual neighbors. I can’t offer you an analysis of what Dr. King would say about storytelling projects. I can offer you some responses to the question about hope that speak to the issue of an intersectional understanding of our community. These are not the only responses, just a handful to give you an idea. We encourage you to read through the archive fora more robust understanding how the hopes of the LGBTQ community manifest.
We have accomplished so much, I do have hope that we will be able to hold onto the advantages we have made. I would like to think that the community includes a lot of well meaning people who will help to fight the racism, classism, ageism, and otherisms that still separate us. – Jan, 67, Allegheny County
As more and more projects arise to address specific concerns – like the Garden of Peace Project and Proud Haven – we seem to be, slowly, recognizing the extent of work we have to do, and signaling a willingness to engage in difficult work. – Erik, 46, Allegheny County, formerly Clearfield and Crawford counties
That we all work together, accepting our individual differences, and that we realize that good things happen when we are visible and reach out. – Mike, 46, Erie County
That we can get to a point where everyone, regardless of race, social class, income, gender assigned at birth, or sexuality, has access to the resources that they need in order to live comfortably. – CJ, 26, Allegheny County (pt) and Alaska
Solidarity across color lines. – kelly, 55, Allegheny County
My greatest hope is that we can all live as fully ourselves everyday with no fear of harm based on who we are, and no shame based on what hate we have internalized. – Joy, 35, Allegheny County
intersectionality. – Sam, 40, Allegheny County
That we will include intersectionality when making space/events for each other. – Coley, 26, Allegheny County
That Western PA becomes a place where discrimination is illegal, where trans folks feel safe to exist, where black lives matter, and where the laws and the community are on our side. – Ashe, 29, Allegheny County
That we are represented racially in everything in our community. – Jazmine, 46, Allegheny County
That we can fight queer and trans oppression through an intersectional frame work including fighting racism, classism, ableism, ageism, and so on. And that we can make space for healing and for having fun while doing so. – Corvus, 33, Allegheny County
More Inclusiveness and Diversity. I wish folks could see past color one day and we fight this battle together instead of having so many battles within our own community. – Naheen, 29, Allegheny County
My greatest hope is that the community will acknowledge the racism and segregation that exists with in it and begin, or continue to, take steps to obliterate it. The hypocrisy of expecting people outside of the community to acknowledge discrimination and “otherizing” when it is prevalent in our own community needs to stop. Whether it is because of skin color or the label that one is comfortable with, i.e. bisexual, equality is necessary for us to really walk our talk. – Staci, 52, Allegheny County
That the stuff I just wrote about above isn’t what happens – that Pride is inclusive; that the LGBTQ community becomes more inclusive both racially and across the community as a whole (including letting people of color lead the way); that support networks develop and exist and thrive; that the LGBTQ community breaks the white privilege barrier down. – Rachel, 30, formerly Allegheny County now Bucks County
That we deepen our conversations and commitments to undoing white supremacy, hetero-patriarchy, imperialism and capitalism. Together. – Jay, 33, Allegheny County
My greatest hope for the LGBTQ+ community here in WPA is that we will continue to grow in the direction that promotes positive communication between one another, inter-sectionality, & inclusive safe spaces. – Emma, 28, Allegheny County formerly Beaver, Bradley and York
That we develop enough resources for our youth and elders as well as safe spaces for all of our community. We have to become more inclusive of people of color within our community, particularly as it relates to power. – Shari, 57, Allegheny County formerly Indiana County