We All Deserve Equality – How to be an ally
We All Deserve Equality
How to be an ally
Everyone can support lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQ+) people, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation. Understanding LGBTQ+-related issues, including rudimentary terms and definitions, can assist you in providing support to LGBTQ+ identified people. In the context of LGBTQ+ issues, you may have come across the term “ally.”
Know Your History:
If you are not sure what the difference between sex and gender is, or what the current LGBTQ+ issues are, try educating yourself. If you have attended a Pride gathering as an ally in previous years, you could be forgiven for assuming it began as a party and proceeded as such. This could not be farther from the facts. Ask the questions, do research, and do not be ashamed to confess that you do not know some things. Give yourself a clear understanding of what it all entails by consulting Google, Twitter, LGBTQ+ media, or an online guide. It might sound like a lot of terms, but all identities are real and come with specific challenges. Many LGBTQ+ activities and marches were organised in Dublin until the word Pride became common in the 1980s. A yearly picnic was arranged in Merrion Square in the 1970s to spread awareness of the Stonewall Riots by Dubliners. This was the beginning of Pride in Ireland.
Stand Your Ground & Support:
Many causes lead to people struggling to take action when they hear something disrespectful, such as “that’s so gay.” It can be uncomfortable when people are uncertain whether to say or do not want to aggravate the situation. When you speak out, you are teaching people, letting them know that their words are not appropriate, and probably encouraging others to do the same. It’s convenient to mark yourself as an ally, but that’s not enough. Oppression should not enjoy a holiday. You must be able to be clear with your defence of LGBTQ+ rights and protect LGBTQ+ individuals from bigotry in order to be a good ally. Anti-LGBTQ+ remarks are hurtful; it is okay to tell your peers, relatives, and colleagues that you find them insulting as an ally.
Support measures to protect LGBTQ+ people from harassment at school, work, and other areas. Even if the concerns seem to be trivial, they may have a major effect on people’s lives. When you witness or hear an unjust remark at school, work or at home, speak to a trustworthy individual about your thoughts and what you can do to fix it. Although it’s understandable to want to protect your LGBTQ+ friends if they’re getting threatened, make sure you don’t interrupt or strip away a queer person’s ability to speak up for themselves.
Almost all of us possess some degree of privilege, whether it’s based on race, class, income, or being cis-gendered, able-bodied, or heterosexual. Being privileged does not indicate that you haven’t faced problems in your life. It simply means that because of the way you were born, you would never have to think or stress about some things that those in the LGBTQ+ community will. Understanding your own rights will help you understand and sympathise with marginalised or oppressed communities.
Don’t jump to conclusions that all of your peers, colleagues, or even roommates are straight. Don’t make assumptions on a person’s identity or pronouns. LGBTQ+ individuals don’t have a distinct appearance, and a person’s new or former relationship has little effect on their sexuality. Someone near to you could be in need of your assistance. Having no judgments would allow them the right to be their true selves. Even if it’s tough to communicate at times, strive to be compassionate. Members of the LGBTQ+ culture face obstacles that heterosexual people may never face. Strangers, states, and even family members may have discriminated against LGBTQ+ persons. It took a lot of guts for them to come forward.
For people in a minority, finding someone to speak to can make a huge difference, and you should be honoured that someone considers you as a trustworthy ally. Don’t believe that only because they told you everything, they expect you to share it with others. It is their duty to share their story. Developing a true appreciation of how the world sees and treats LGBTQ+ people is an important aspect of being respectful of your LGBTQ+ peers and loved ones. It may seem obvious, but in order to understand, you must be eager and open to really hear. Pay attention to your friend’s individual stories and politely raise questions. You can help to influence the shape of the future if you acknowledge the past. Explore the ongoing conflicts and the problems that the LGBTQ+ community is faced by now. Discover different projects that appeal to you so you can get engaged and concentrate your support on making a positive difference. It’s vital to get out there and participate in the communities if you truly want to support the cause. It’s easy to find LGBTQ+ activities near you that welcome allies. Display your support for the LGBTQ+ community.
Submitted by a DkIT student