Thank you to all of the women who showed up on Saturday to March for women's rights. And LGBTQ rights. And for racial equality. And for the Climate. And all of the endangered animals. And for reproductive freedom. And healthcare. And religious freedom.
For standing up for the Human Race. Thank you for doing so, because I couldn't.
Thirty years ago, that was me. Me, marching for LGBTQ rights in the very first Gay Pride Parade in Denver. Me, marching and signing petitions and showing up in support of the E.R.A. Me, registering voters in the election when Reagan won every state but Massachusettes. Me, marching in Take Back the Night marches. When I was young I was fearless. I participated in everything. I marched and spoke and stood up for those who couldn't. I registered voters and attended rallies. I wrote poetry and got involved in local politics. I was willing to sacrifice for the good of the many. My mantra was "this is a good day to die".
But things change and life goes on and we grow into ourselves, into our lives. I've gotten used to living without fear, of going out in public and holding my wife's hand, of us parenting our child together, of what most people consider a normal life. Over the 37 years since I came out, I have grown into that life, that normal, not having to think about whether someone else's perception of me was going to result in bad things happening to me or my family.
This time around I couldn't go, as much as I might have wanted to in the past. I am almost paralyzed with fear: fear for my wife; fear for our bright, eloquent son; fear for this wonderful life we have created; fear that I will find myself on a list and then in a camp and then no more.
I can't seem to find my courage. I have no more brave. I have no more fearless. I want to go to ground, to find a place to shelter us all.
So, thank you to all those who could go, for you carried my voice with you. I was there in spirit, even if I couldn't be there in person.
Forgive me for being so afraid. I have so much more to lose, now, then I did when I was younger. I can't take the same risks. Losing this life terrifies me to the core.