OPINION — I was too much of a coward to put my Progress Pride and Bi Pride flags out this June.
It worried me that I might make my neighbors dislike me or make myself a target in some way. On the other side as well, there’s a type of erasure that can make me feel isolated from my community; scrutiny that makes me feel like an imposter. Both flags got left in their packaging, and I tried not to think of them at all, until August.
A genderqueer lesbian couple moved into my apartment complex this summer. They flew flags from their back balcony and painted their windows with drawings of rainbows and hearts. I was ashamed and felt so guilty, it made my body hurt. If they felt alone or singled out or unsupported, it was only because people like me are not as brave as they are.
The second half of September is full of activities and events by Pride of Southern Utah, and it looks like it’s going to be big. If you go to the Project Rainbow website, you can have someone come around and put a flag in your lawn for about $15. Those proceeds go back into other pride projects. There’s also the Trevor Project dedicated to suicide prevention.
Please, donate and show support if you can. We’re not alone, even when it feels like it sometimes.
Submitted by MIKELA CARTER DERBIDGE, St. George.
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