Why I Installed a Rainbow Flag on my House
When my accomplice and I closed on our dream residence, the very very first thing we did was place an order for a flagpole and a rainbow Satisfaction flag. Due to some speedy transport, the day after we moved in—earlier than we had planted flowers, hung curtains, and even totally unpacked—we drilled into the porch and hung our first Satisfaction flag on the home.
Since I got here out 18 years in the past, I’ve lived in neighborhoods the place I knew it wouldn’t be secure to fly a Satisfaction flag, neighborhoods the place I’d hear homophobic slurs hurled at me and others. I spent a decade residing in New York Metropolis and dealing at LGBTQ nonprofits, and I used to be effectively conscious of the variety of hate crimes that occurred within the metropolis—and within the neighborhoods the place I lived. When my accomplice and I bought a home in conservative outer Brooklyn, we absolutely didn’t really feel secure placing a rainbow flag on our home. As a substitute, I positioned a rainbow Adirondack chair within the yard behind our six-foot privateness fence. I nonetheless fearful that the neighbors whose upstairs home windows peered into our tiny yard would see the rainbow chair and goal us.
However after we determined to depart the town and transfer to Portland, Ore., residing a progressive neighborhood was a requirement for us. Whereas touring homes, my accomplice and I deliberately took observe of the variety of rainbow flags and liberal political indicators we noticed. In the long run, there have been many causes we bought the home we did—like the way it met the wants of my canine—however it was essential how secure and welcoming the group felt for my LGBTQ household.
Ever because the day we hung our flag, we’ve acquired nothing however optimistic responses from neighbors. On a number of events, individuals have stopped to speak to me about how essential variety is, and the way glad they’re to see our Satisfaction flag. Typically the optimistic interactions don’t even contain me. Whereas gardening, I’ve overheard numerous conversations between mother and father or grandparents explaining to their youngsters about what our rainbow flag means. On just a few events, I’ve even heard youngsters correcting adults about its which means, explaining to them rainbow flags aren’t nearly “homosexual” individuals, however symbolize the entire LGBTQ group. The youth of immediately are fairly superb, they usually’re a giant a part of why we instantly put a flag up—and why I want we felt we may do it in previous neighborhoods.
In 2020, it’s simple to assume that it’s completely secure to be out as LGBTQ. Sadly, that isn’t all the time the case. LGBTQ youth are nonetheless 120 instances extra prone to be unsafe at residence and expertise homelessness than their heterosexual and cisgender friends. Shifting right into a neighborhood and placing up a rainbow flag isn’t about my must flaunt and even have fun my queerness. For me, flying a rainbow flag from my home is about celebrating my group, creating alternatives for dialog, and most of all, showcasing visibility. My flag presents hope to the individuals passing by who may not really feel secure to return out—but.
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