We Are All Part of the ProblemPosted by Anamchara Books on October 27, 2010
Ellyn Sanna is the Executive Editor at Anamchara Books.
In Gareth Higgins' October 7 blog, he indicates that inclusivity must also mean the acceptance of responsibility. We cannot separate ourselves from the horrible events that happen in our world (like Tyler Clementi's suicide), claiming that WE are too kind and too Christ-like, too liberal or too conservative, to be part of the situation that caused those events. We cannot draw those boundary lines. Instead, we must accept our own culpability -- and then see what action we are required to take as a result. By identifying with the problem's cause, we can become part of the problem's solution.
Higgins speaks of the term "ally" that has been added to the LGBTQQI acronym (making it LGBTQQIA -- an obvious conclusion occurs to me: maybe we should just give in and include the entire alphabet!). He defines "ally" as:
anyone who cares enough to commit themselves to be educated about the structures of injustice faced by people whom the dominant culture defines as sexual minorities.
Higgins goes on to distinguish between the sort of inclusivity that patronizes, that sets up one side as the kind and generous benefactor reaching out to the lowly and needy "other," and a more genuine inclusiveness that requires that I step across a boundary line and take my place at the other's side, allowing myself to be transformed in the process. This act asks me to recognize my own neediness -- and it means I may receive far more than I give. In Higgins' words:
We may all have been stigmatized because of our sexuality, especially those of us raised in the church. We are not sure how to make sexuality "fit" with spirituality. And so we live in a constant state of struggle or denial. Those of us who are straight could learn from those of us who are gay. Those of us who are straight might indeed yearn to be invited into a world where sexuality has been such a source of struggle that its stewards have had to learn to transform it from an invitation to suffering into a source of strength. E(veryone) belongs here.
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