I’ve been hiding from all the controversy lately. Well, not so much hiding as just ignoring it, or trying my best to anyway. I had a huge realization on my drive home from work today. I recently had a friend tell me that they are liking animals much more than gay people lately. Even though it was said about a week ago, it really hit me today. I guess you could say the profoundness of it finally sank in.
In this lovely valley that we call home, there has been a lot of drama, for lack of better terminology. Whether it be about chicken, kissing, organizations splitting, fundraisers, what have you. I’m so done with all of it. I seriously want to walk away from my life as a gay activist and become a more avid animal activist. It would appear to be time better spent. Let me explain.
First point: With as limited as funds are, have you ever seen an animal shelter tell the public to donate to them instead of a person who rescues animals from there home? Um, no. Why? Because they believe in the act of saving lives, educating the public about animal responsibility and general animal welfare. Who cares who’s getting the money as long as the greater good and ultimate goals are being accomplished. Different groups do different things and would have strong points and abilities others might not. Individuals should be encouraged to spread their money around for a more diverse way of helping their cause or community. Who cares who’s a non-profit, not for profit or even a for profit? The bottom line is, believe in the work that whatever group does and support them, regardless.
Secondly: Have you ever seen animal shelters fighting over who gives the best care to the animals? Have you ever seen animal shelters competing for all of the animals? Again, no. In a world that has so many different shelters, rescues, groups etc. They ALL completely work TOGETHER. Why is the gay community so opposed to this mindset? Within the animal world, you have no kill shelters, high kill shelters, breed specific shelters and so on. Are we really that different? We have groups that are gay, lesbian, transgender, bears, political, social and so on. Why do we find it so difficult to communicate, get along and work as one cohesive unit for all of our greater good? It baffles me. I was at the shelter the other day and saw another shelter loading their truck with a ton of dogs to transport and try and help. This happens so rarely in our community and if it does, there’s a clique and sometimes that means others are left out. We should be embracing EVERY organization, person or group who is wanting to lend a hand. Period. Stop acting like “your kind” are the enemies, we have much bigger foes and injustices to fend off.
Third point: You will never find an animal complaining about helping them or the manner in which you helped them. If you stood on a corner and kissed for hours, even if you accomplished very little, that animal would have nothing but gratitude for what you tried to do for them. They would never chastise you, degrade you, harm you, etc. You would be greeted with enthusiastic, unconditional love. You will never find an animal complain about being stuck bored in a cage the entire day but not leave its cage when allowed. You can bet that animal would be bursting with energy and appreciation. An animal never takes a human for granted. They appreciate the small things, even something as simple as tossing a ball can mean the world to them. I think we can often get caught up in life and so many things are taken for granted. I hear people all the time complaining about how there is never anything going on. They just so happen to be the same people I never see out at community events. There are some great organizations in the valley that do great things for this community. Take advantage of that, support that. I also don’t think the general public is aware how much work is involved in putting on those events, protesting for that cause, etc. There are countless hours involved. Time away from family, loss of sleep, frustration, stress and so much more. I’m not specifically talking about me, there are so many people that do so much for the gay community. So many organizations and groups who work countless hours to make our lives a little bit better, a little bit safer, a little bit brighter. Let’s not forget those people. Say thank you now and again. Remind them why they do what they do.
Lastly, I think there is a lot we can learn from the animal kingdom and those who support it. We need to have MORE togetherness and LESS infighting. We all care about the same thing, we just have different ways of doing it. Respect that. Show appreciation for all that is done for this community. Get out there and help. Volunteer, bring new ideas to the table, get involved and make a difference. Animals don’t have a voice but you do. Don’t take that for granted.
With love, respect, admiration and hope…