Happy National Coming Out Day!

Ladies and gentlemen, gays and straight allies, transgendered peers and everyone in between – today is the day to celebrate the beauty of genderless love, and proclaim our support for equal rights; it’s National Coming Out Day.

While most readers are familiar with my adoring boyfriend, Niko, you may not know that I came out as a lesbian about five years ago. It was a difficult process, made a thousand times easier because of my gracious and supportive parents. I remember my first coming out story: My dad and I went out for lunch at Sushi Rock in Miami, and I spilled everything to him about my relationship with my then-girlfriend Caytlyn. After a rough break-up with Caytlyn, I met Jenny, who would become my partner for the next three years.

During this phase of my life, I grew to wholly embrace homosexuality and gay pride. It is a beautiful community, full of love and passion and understanding for others. It also bears a dark underbelly of abuse, discrimination and harassment. According to the Human Rights Campaign, 90% of LGBT students have faced harassment due to their sexual orientation. I can sympathize with this statistic. I was never a social outcast, and always fit in with the crowd, but upon coming out to my high school, I was seemingly shunned by many ‘friends.’ Suddenly, I wasn’t Katie Boue anymore – I was ‘the lesbian.’ How could my choice of partner ultimately alter my entire image?

We need to band together, LGBT community members and straight allies alike, to ensure that this nation becomes a more accepting place, where kids can go to school without feeling threatened because of who they are. Only five states and Washington DC have legalized gay marriage or civil unions in some form. In 29 states, you can still be fired based solely upon your sexual orientation. More than 14,000 dedicated servicemen have been discharged from the military based on the legislation of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” This is a disgrace to our nation, and a sad reflection of the misconstrued message that people have taken from what our Constitution is really trying to tell us. We have the power to change this, and we must act now!

Stand up, come out, support your peers and celebrate this beautiful holiday! I have included some of my favorite photographs from over the years, all of which celebrate gay pride and the LGBT community. I may not be participating in homosexuality at the moment, but I am still a dedicated supporter.

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Categories: Current Events, Stories & Odes

Author:Katie Boué

Katie Boué is the voice of TheMorningFresh.com - a travel lifestyle blog focusing on climbing, Airbnb life, and the outdoors.

One Comment on “Happy National Coming Out Day!”

  1. dena harrington
    October 11, 2010 at 9:01 pm #

    Well said dear. Once again, I am very proud of you!

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