For this year’s pride month, Socksmith partnered with @mileswhorales (he/they), an ally of the LGBTQ+ community.
We hope that hearing this story will help others to feel inspired, and proud of who they are.
Jonathan, how do you define Pride?
Pride means honoring the folks who came before us for being bold enough to stand in their truth and laying the foundations to liberation for us. Recognizing the Black trans women and trans women of color like Marsha P. Johnson who did the work then so we can keep it up now.
Recognizing that Pride™️ is more than targeted ads with rainbow patterns (no shade), but about the liberation of all queer and gender oppressed people and an end to white supremacy. Pride is a riot AND a party.
What does it mean to be gay/queer?
Queer to me is being able to exist outside the bounds and constrictions of our current oppressive reality. It’s being limitless and knowing that anything is possible when we allow ourselves to live and exist outside of oppression and fight against normativity.
I don’t know/don’t think that there was a specific time point I defined myself as gay/queer. Even though cognitively I may not have always recognized or registered the difference, I have always felt kinship with other queer folks and difference from the norm. I’m not sure what my “true self” is, but I definitely have not reached my final form. :)
It feels like being confused and happy and afraid and angry and loved and lonely all at once. And, it feels like knowing, intuitively, that it will all be okay even when all things point to the opposite of that truth.
There are those who may not know what their truth is, what would you like to say to them?
Take your time and be gentle with yourself and recognize that others are also often trying to do this same navigation. Allow yourself the space to explore, but also understand that it’s okay to just be and develop as you are at whatever pace you need. There need not be a specific destination or end goal to speaking your truth or reaching a true self. Life and identity are dynamic and that change can happen day to day over the course of your life. So just take it easy.
And to those who want to be allies?
Pay Black Trans People. Go beyond allyship and become a coconspirator. Disrupt white supremacy and cisheteropatriarchy. You don’t have to know what every term or theory means or have to be “woke” to know that the subjugation and oppression of others is wrong.
All it takes is for anyone to disrupt violence against queer and trans people in any way they can by any means possible anytime it happens. Period.
Trans and Queer Teen Resources: