There is much more to our community than might initially meet the eye.
For many years, media portrayals of LGBTQ people focused on one type of experience -- that of the white, gay, urban man living a fabulous life in a coastal city. While people living that experience are an important part of our community, many other voices and stories haven't been consistently heard.
It's (beyond) time for that to change.
While we've come a long way, we still have farther to go until every member of our community has the equality, dignity, safety and justice we deserve, no matter where we live or how we identify ourselves. Important issues remain unresolved or, even worse, unaddressed at all.
Many among us are still exposed to discrimination, hatred and abuse -- especially people of color, trans people, youth, women and those living at the intersection of oppressions in places with unequal laws and less accepting cultures. We must hear those voices in order to shape a brighter future for every LGBTQ person.
To achieve that ambitious yet essential goal, we need to know what's happening in the real lives of people throughout our nation.
Launching today nationwide, Our Tomorrow is a campaign to engage LGBTQ people across the country in a conversation to shape the future of a bigger, bolder movement that leaves no one behind.
SHARE YOUR VOICE: CLICK HERE!
Want to make your voice heard? You can join the conversation by visiting the campaign's website here. It just takes a few minutes to express your hopes, fears and ideas in your own words. You'll also be able to read and share posts created by others.
- What challenges are facing the African-American trans woman in Memphis?
- What hopes does the gay, genderqueer youth in Salt Lake City hold for his future?
- What fears or doubts does the undocumented queer woman in rural Oklahoma harbor about tomorrow?
- And what ideas does each of them have to address their own concerns and meet the needs of their communities?
To truly begin shaping a brighter future, we need to hear answers to questions like these--and we need to hear from everybody.
That's where Our Tomorrow comes in.
Supported by more than 90 organizations and foundations, the campaign will reach out to people online and at events in more than 50 locations nationwide. Our goal is to offer every member of our community the opportunity to share your hopes and fears for the future -- and your ideas for making tomorrow better for all of us.
This campaign is an opportunity for every LGBTQ person to share their voice -- and ensure this important conversation about our future reflects the full diversity of our communities.
And it's also an opportunity for our LGBTQ organizations -- from local community centers to large national organizations -- to shape their future work and investments around your needs.
As we stand in this historic moment, with so much accomplished and so much work ahead of us, let's take our next steps into the future together -- lifting up all of our voices and leaving no one behind.
Masen Davis is outreach director for Our Tomorrow and the former executive director of the Transgender Law Center.