Pride Month has come to an end this year, but that does not mean that we should stop expressing our belief LBGT+ rights. Here’s a few dos and don’ts on how be an ally for your queer friends and colleagues!
Do be willing to listen.
Do be conscious of your subconscious biases. It is completely normal to have them but it’s crucial to recognize them.
Do learn more about the history and current situation of the community. The leap between being someone who’s kind of interested in the issue and being someone who is an active ally is an enthusiasm to learn.
Do the inner work to figure out a way to acknowledge how you participate in oppressive systems.
Do the hard work and figure out how you can help transform repressive structures.
Do make use of your privilege to elevate(digitally and in-person) suppressed voices. Your voice sends a powerful message that you’re advocating for your LGBTQ+ friends, family, classmates, and colleagues because you care about them.
Do learn to listen and take criticism with grace. As hard as it is to accept you’ll for sure will make some mistakes along the way. But when that day comes and someone provides you feedback take it and try to learn from it.
Do take advantage of the power of language. For some people, just saying words like “gay” or “bisexual” out loud and comfortably is a big step. Using equality language around people makes everyone mor acquainted and comfortable with it.
Do try to be willing to have difficult conversations rather than hope someone else will.
Do put in the effort to become a better ally.
Do not expect to be instructed or shown anything. Take it upon yourself to learn and answer your questions using the resources available to you. Go online. Ask questions. Do some research. Reach out to other allies who might have grappled with the same challenge.
Do not compete in the „Oppression Olympics” for the gold medal (you do not need to compare how your battle is „just as awful as” that of another person).
Do not act as if you are the most knowledgeable.
Do not claim credit for the work done by those who are marginalized who did it before you came along.
Do not assume someone isn’t supportive of the community. Thesnap judgements were making are based on the little info that we have, and, importantly, our own biases, conscious or unconscious. As you put those assumptions in check, you’ll start to see that people will often surprise you.
Do not assume that every member of a community that is underinvested feels oppressed.