Monday, September 24, 2012

2012 OUT On The Hill-What Now, Black LGBT Family?

Another exciting edition of OUT on the Hill has concluded and our Black LGBT family has scattered to our various locales around the country until we gather inside I-495 next September.  

As we traveled by plane, train, bus and auto back to our hometowns with those conversations fresh on our minds, it's now time for the real work to be done that we discussed in the various sessions, conversations we had at receptions, in the hotel bars, over lunch and dinner and even our various hotel rooms.

As we got to Own Our Power inside the Beltway as Sharon likes to remind us to do, the big question now becomes what will we do individually and as part of our Black trans and SGL community to exercise the power that we spent time learning to own?  

The first thing on our Black LGBT Own Our Power list is a no brainer.   Get Trans and SGL people  registered and get your LGBT souls to the polls on November 6 (or sooner in my case as a Texas resident). We need to make sure that we get 4 more years for POTUS 44 and give him a Congress he can work with.  We also know beyond a shadow of a doubt that this president is the best ever on trans issues and has done some groundbreaking things for the SGL community as well.

We also have to not only continue to uplift trans people, but put our trans brothers in that leadership spotlight as well.  Remember some trans people are trans guys, and I was glad to hear that during OUT on the Hill 2013 the trans men will have a Town Hall like we did during this just concluded event.

I also challenged trans people in the Town Hall to run for office so that we can start writing the legislation we need and stop begging to be included in it.  Later that night LZ Granderson point blank asked me when I was going to lead by example and run for office in Texas, which is something my cousin asked me just before I left for DC.  That conversation LZ and I had falls under The Black Trans Revolution Will Not Be Televised territory.

Segueing into Black Trans Revolution items, since there's never been a trans themed forum at the CBCF-ALC, I'd love to see that happen as well in 2013 with trans men and trans women making up that panel along with allies. 

There's a thirteen city LGBT Economic Empowerment Tour cosponsored by the SBA and NBJC that is slated to hit Atlanta, Brooklyn, Chicago, Detroit, Ft. Lauderdale/Miami, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Newark, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Oakland/San Francisco, Washington DC and Houston that we'll need to get the word out about.   This 'Many Faces One Dream initiative to tap into the economic power of SGL and trans people and those budding entrepreneurs and business owners amongst us is going to be an important component for the Black LGBT community's ability to own our economic power.  .

We also need to do the work to ensure that when we have the next LGBT themed forum at the 2013 CBCF-ALC, it's not just us in the room attending it.

Finally, we need to in the eleven and a half months until OUT on the Hill 2013 arrives on the scene bigger, badder, better and Blacker than ever talk up OUT on the Hill at every opportunity and encourage our people to go and be part of the amazing experience of seeing and talking to trans and SGL leaders from 18-80.  

And yes, we need to continue to network, forge partnerships and uplift each other in order to help our Black LGBT community survive, grow and thrive.  

There's probably other things that people will come up with in the wake of this conference, but what needs to happen now Black LGBT family is that we roll up our sleeves and get to work accomplishing some of the short term and long term things thoughtfully discussed during OUT on the Hill 2012.

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