shadowbird: (jeunesse)

Yesterday and Next Year
with gratitude to Alyssa Harley

Yesterday

was hard. The Supreme Court

decided I could marry

a man or a woman with impunity,

just three days after a Latina trans immigrant was booed out of the White House

for saying the struggle is not over

because she has bigger problems than a hers&hers wedding registry.

I did it too. I said to friends, to family, jesus, can’t we take one day to be happy,

can’t we let people celebrate and rest for a minute

and come back refreshed in a minute

ready to fight again?

Some people quietly agreed, and some shouted that thought down, and some quietly disagreed,

and I was angry. And I slept on it, and thought what do I have to be angry about?

Despite my intersectional identities I am sitting pretty high up on the privilege pyramid

(English as my first language, white skin, citizenship and

if I take it in any particular moment the ability
to pass as a straight cis man, if you don’t look under these clothes.)

I realized that yesterday I was angry because of my privilege,

the privilege even for a minute to feel that we have worked hard enough

that a break is coming, that I

will reach the top of that pyramid and sit in the sun.

There are people at the bottom holding me up,

holding you up. They are crushed under the weight

of good enough and not my fight and that must be so hard and next year.

They have fought the fights that were not theirs,

shown up for rallies and on picket lines,

paid their dues and listened to the promise of next year.

next year

you can stay in this country

your rape will be prosecuted

your name will be your own

your body will be safe in bathrooms and bars and the streets

next year

you can have privacy

you can make your own medical choices

your identity will be respected

next year

I’ll sign the nondiscrimination bill

next year

I’ll remember that Stonewall was a riot

next year

you can be proud too.
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