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Today is International Women’s Day and there is a false idea that you have to ‘celebrate’ it. No sir, this is not a day to be celebrated. This day is to remind us of the importance of women in the world and her contribution, but more than anything it is to remember their rights as people, remember how many are violated every day and die of abuse. That is why this day is for us as men to reflect and learn to respect, understand and begin to know how to be ALLIES.
We have the false belief that being an LGBTQ person makes you an ally immediately and it is not like that, they are two terms that do not usually come together.
In terms of sexual diversity, we say that an ally is that heterosexual and/or cisgender person who believes in non-discrimination, equity and inclusion. It is that person who usually knows someone LGBTQ first-hand and has been able to share experiences, listen to stories, closely observe the life of this person who, due to their condition or sexual orientation, is classified as “different”.
With these parallel life experiences, he can better understand the situations we are going through and when he has the opportunity to do something for another LGBT person, he does it.
These allies run the risk of being branded lesbians or closet gays, traditionally this has been the case.
Being an ally implies responsibility, it is not a title that stays forever due to an isolated event. You have to work on it on a daily basis, you have to educate yourself, express yourself correctly, give voice to those who still decide not to have one, attract attention to important issues, act as a group, build trust and safe spaces.
In the best of cases, an ally is that person who raises their voice when they witness some injustice, an act of homophobia, harassment, or hear discriminatory references towards another person.
For us and us in general it is difficult to come out of the closet about our sexual orientation or gender condition. Being visible on this subject in 100% of our life can take many years and consume a lot of energy. And for most LGBTQ people, coping with everyday life is a challenge in itself.
And for this reason, not every LGBTQ person is an ally of women. No one was born knowing everything and having a mere sexual orientation does not make you an expert in the matter, socially, politically, or professionally speaking. There is a long way to go and a lot of awareness to bring to all spaces.
“You don’t have to be the cause to defend the cause.”