What a Privilege to Call them Friends

Already, tt has been a topsy-turvy week–some real highs and then several lows.

But I have noticed that even within low moments in life there often are wondrous moments. Here’s an example.

On Tuesday, several MCC Richmond members joined me and about 1oo others at a meeting of a Virginia General Assembly submcommittee. Our purpose: to urge the subcommittee to recommend passage of SB 747, offered by State Senator Donald McEachin. If passed, discrimination against state employees based on sexual orientation and gender identity would no longer be legal. Not surprisingly, the subcommittee killed the bill again this year.

But as part of our effort to change their minds, I was privileged to listen to John Poarch, Darlene McDaniels, and Arthur Dewey speak about their experiences as former and current state employees. What a blessing!

I was so proud of each of them–and proud of others who also offered support. It takes courage to go into a pressure-cooker environment like the General Assembly and speak your truth, especially when you are pretty sure those who are paid to listen will not do as you wish.

I was sorely disappointed with the outcome, and irritated at one of subcommittee members who always seems dismissive of those of us who advocate for LGBT equality. For a while, I got caught up in that negativity.

Then, I remembered the courage and grace of John, Darlene, and Arthur. What a blessing! What a privilege to call them friends.