Letter: Speak up for North Dakota’s LGBTQ+ community
It’s alarming that we, as a state, don’t seek to educate ourselves about the LGBTQ+ community or have the compassion to make our state a safe place for them to live.
The number of anti-LGBTQ+ bills in the North Dakota Legislature is astounding. The bills purport to “protect our youth” and ironically, they are deeply hurting our youth. Just listen to or read (www.ndlegis.gov) the countless testimonies given during the bills’ hearings by social workers, counselors, psychiatrists and doctors who work with them. These professionals are not “luring or perverting our children,” as some of the bills suggest. They are caring, ethical providers who have the best interests of their clients and patients at heart.
Listen to the testimonies of family members of LGBTQ+ youth who fear for their safety and sanity every day. It’s alarming that we, as a state, don’t seek to educate ourselves about the LGBTQ+ community or have the compassion to make our state a safe place for them to live.
I am an ally of the LGBTQ+ community and attend a Lutheran church that is welcoming and affirming of LGBTQ+ people. If you are an ally, too, it’s time to speak out. We can’t wait for “somebody out there” to do it for us. It takes a lot of courage for LGBTQ+ people to come out to their family and friends. Likewise, as allies, we need to find the courage to speak out on their behalf and support them in any way we can.