Wednesday, September 29, 2010

When Fiction Comes To Life

Straight Ally


The first time I’d seen that acronym, it stopped me in my tracks.  I was familiar with LGBT and knew it was also frequently written as GLBT.  I had seen the Q attached, and understood it meant “Questioning” and knew that was important to be included.  But that “A” touched me.  That was me; I was being included.  I am an Ally.

I still feel honored to be included.   Here was a group who has been fighting for centuries for the most basic of human rights and human dignity.  They were fighting for the things that were given me free of charge.  I had not earned any right to be included.  But there they were, open and accepting.
Straight ally is a colloquial term that describes a heterosexual person who supports equal civil rights, gender equality, and LGBT social movements.

Recently I participated in a Marriage Equality rally.  I seriously debated what kind of sign I wanted to carry.  Should I carry a common sign and just blend in, or a ‘straight ally’ sign?  I did not want to be seen as ashamed to blend in, because I wasn’t.  But in the end I decided to show that I was proud to be an ally.  Because I want the opposition to know that there really are straight allies.  And our numbers are growing.

Popular Straight Allies include:  Liza Minnelli, Ashton Kutcher, Jennifer Aniston, Cybil Shepherd, Paul Newman, Ben Affleck, Brad Pitt, Kathy Griffin, Seth MacFarlane, Sarah Silverman, Cyndi Lauper, Barbra Streisand, Dennis Kucinich, and Coretta Scott King.

Taking a stand recently, a straight couple - Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer and Elyse Buxbaum - were married in a civil ceremony in New Haven Connecticut rather than in New York.   The reason – gay marriage is allowed in Connecticut and not in New York.   They made a statement by boycotting discriminatory marriage laws in their own state.

Recently in an article in The Advocate, New Orleans Saints linebacker Scott Fujita voiced his unapologetic support for marriage equality and LGBT rights. When asked if he worries about losing fans over his pro-gay views, Fujita replied:

"I've found that every time I open my mouth about an issue that's unrelated to football, I alienate some people. But that's a risk I'm willing to take. Because for every piece of hate mail I've received for speaking out in support of gay marriage or for wanting to bring the troops home or for discussing the injustices of Japanese internment, there's a dozen people who either appreciate what I'm doing or who think about the issue in a different way... I also recognize that the platform I've been given as a professional athlete will be taken from under me once I leave this game, at which point no one will care to ask my opinion. So in the meantime, why not stand for something?"

How can you be a straight ally?  There are many ways.  

In addition, some ally, and some gay / straight ally, organizations include:

And here is PFLAG’s website for Straight Allies:

Be sure to sign the pledge!!

Fortunately almost all of our favorite slash characters have been surrounded by some very powerful straight allies.  The first one I met was Emmet in  All I Ever Knew by manyafandom
Emmet helped Jasper, accepted him as he was, and was there for him when he came out to friends.  In Equal & Opposite by Oh Jasper My Jasper  Jasper’s mother joined PFLAG.
Rosalie stood firm by Jasper through many trials in At The Deep End by Naelany , and Bella had been there for Edward. Those boys had a strong circle of friends who did not hesitate to stop a group bashing Jasper. In Marked by Whitlock-Masen Mike Newton repeatedly proves to be a very accepting friend. The list could go on and on, but I would rather hear from you.  

Which Fan-fiction allies have impressed you?  

How are you an ally?

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