I AM INTOLERANT OF YOUR INTOLERANCE
By Patti Digh
It hurts me, deeply, to know that my lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex friends face this kind of reality daily. Just as racism and sexism hurt. Every ism.
And I'm tired of getting hateful notes when I advocate for gay marriage and other rights for my friends who are as deeply, fully human as I am.
I'm not going to be polite about this issue any longer by acknowledging that you have a right to believe the awful, hateful things you believe--you may believe them but I don't in any way have to collude with them by ignoring them, being polite about them, making peace about them.
This is hate, pure and simple. Call it what it is. You can hide behind religion if you want, but no religion I want any part of is based on hate. if you disparage my gay friends, I'm not going to be silent about it, I'm not going to apologize for my point of view, I'm not going to take the HRC sticker off my car, and I'm not going to say "let's all just get along." No.
You are wrong. You are as wrong as people who insisted that black Americans drink from a different water fountain. You are as wrong as school districts that let black schools use old textbooks of white students, but handed out sandpaper at the end of the year so the little black kids could sandpaper their germs off of them. Imagine the lesson those kids learned as a result of that hateful action.
No, I won't participate in that wrong and I won't be quiet about it. Nor do I care if you don't buy my books if you feel this way, so stop threatening to boycott me. I don't care. If I care about that, I am truly lost. What I do care about is that my gay friends have families that they love. They have babies they adore. They live lives of great meaning and joy and commitment. They do mundane things like wash the dishes and get into arguments over housework and forget to put the milk in the fridge, like straight people. Just like people with disabilities and just like white people and black people and every other color of people. Just like Jews and Christians and Muslims.
What on earth do you fear? Don't write to me and discount the experiences of other people. Don't write to me and threaten to stop buying my books. Don't write to me and argue with me about this. It is non-negotiable. I am intolerant of your intolerance.