The right to keep quiet.

I took more than 61 years to abolish slavery. Historically brilliant figures like: William Pitt the Younger, Lord Mansfield and William Wilberforce fought to emancipate black people from the shackles they bore like bracelets.

It took us until 1928 for headway to be made to give women suffrage in the United Kingdom, a movement that like so many, claimed numerous lives.

We’ve been through two world wars, countless terrorist attacks and each time we rise from our knees, tea (cup of) in hand and keep going in honour of both the living and of the dead.

Yet, something still bothers me, a little worm niggling at the back of my head, burrowing deeper and deeper.

Despite all our policies and moralities we still have our flaws. Most of the time these are endearing, they make us unique but other times, they are nothing short of heart-breaking.

People talk about “Tolerance” of other cultures, “tolerance” of the LGBT community, “tolerance” of the youth as if we were something that you put up with but don’t really accept; like that damp patch on the bedroom ceiling that you put up with because you can’t solve the problem yourself but it’d be too expensive to bring a professional in to do it for you.

Ellen Page has just “come out” as a gay woman after feeling like she cannot hide it any longer. Why?

Why did she have to hide it in the first place? Why does a person have to announce to the world that they are gay?

I did not sit my parents down to tell them: “Okay, I’ve been wanting to tell you for a long time…so…here goes. I’m straight. I’m as straight as the day is long. There I’ve said it.”

It saddens me that, regardless of the gay marriage laws and the supposed equality between the LGBT community and everybody else, that there is still the distinction between the LGBT community and everybody else.

If we were all truly equal then surely the correct phrase would just be: everybody. A person should not have to hide who they are. We should be able to stand proud and wear our colours with pride, whatever colours they may be.

Diversity is a gift, and we’ve been staring into the horse’s mouth for far too long.


I don’t see a difference between the two. Each trio personifies love and who are we to deny ANYONE their basic rights as humans?


4 thoughts on “The right to keep quiet.

  1. No matter what one believes is the cause, healing and growth will come with change. Some may only tolerate our differences in race, sexual preference, faith or culture but many will grow and choose to accept. Perhaps following acceptance of others who are not so quite like ourselves is embrace. And once differences are embraced perhaps the lines, imaginary or otherwise, that divide us will fade completely away. Thanks for your thought provoking blog, Deanna.

  2. great post, and I couldn’t agree more! A while ago I was on the board of my local AIDS organization, and we were doing a visioning exercise. I shocked everyone by saying my vision was not one of acceptance, education, etc. My vision was one where it didn’t matter. That there was no special word, or rights or anything. What I was driving at is exactly what you have written about. It took me a while to make my point, adn it never made it inot the final vision, but I stand by it. we are all just people. Not gay people, white people, black people, people with AIDS or HIV. Just people trying to live life as best we can.

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