Dear, Sham. Sincerely, Mississippi

In light of the recent legislation our government is attempting to put into effect, I must take a moment to express my opinion on an issue that, though it may never actually affect me, has been made possible to affect me, if needed.

Dear Sham,

We have been reviewing your application for equal rights and inclusion for quite some time, and although your qualifications are impeccable, we have chosen to consider other candidates.

We, not we the people, but we the lawmakers, have decided to place you in a box, place you on the top shelf, and pray to God, because of our strongly upheld religious beliefs, that you stay there. Quiet. Unmoved.

It is not that we feel you unqualified for these rights, but rather over qualified. You posses traits and characteristics that are….different. These characteristics are not what we are accustomed to and although we thank you for paying taxes for all these years like a 1st class citizen, we have decided to make the decision for you to be a 2nd class citizen.

Best of luck in your endeavors!

Sincerely, Mississippi.

Dear Mississippi,

While I appreciate the time you took to redesign the template that was used to justify slavery and call it “law”, I am not flattered nor am I impressed with your ability, or rather lack there of, to make sense of the biggest nonsense my generation has seen.

You, our government, better known as Phil Bryant and the Lawmakers (sounds like a trashy rock band), has distastefully let the citizens of this great state know that we nor our efforts are good enough.

I am now a visitor on the very ground where I took my first breath.

James Bevel, Ruby Bridges, Curtis Conway Bryant and all of the 1955-1965 Civil Rights participants: good job, but not good enough.
Elvis Presley and BB King: thanks, but not thanks enough.
Charles Evers, Medger Evers, Myrlie Evers, Fanni Lou Hamer: we applaud you, but the applause stops here.
Eudora Welty, Tennessee Williams, Richard Wright: good reads, but not good enough.
C.L. Franklin: we appreciate Aretha, but not good enough.
Brandy Norwood and Oprah Winfrey: nice try, but not nice enough.
James Earl Jones, Robin Roberts, Robert Pittman, Clarence Otis Jr., Fred Smith, Zig Ziglar: thanks for putting Mississippi on the map, but there isn’t a map big enough to chart the hatred and bigotry and discrimination that our home state spreads.

Do not make the deaths of James Chaney and Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner be in vain.

With Sympathy, Sham.

This is far more than a gay issue. This is a people issue. The LGBT community just happens to be the target of the era. Sixty+ years ago it was African Americans. Who knows who it will be tomorrow. It is a sad time for Mississippi and the collective community. We continually elect people into office who want to keep us shackled under bipartisan agendas and fear of religion (I use that term very loosely). They are using our own “beliefs” and “morals” against us and it is made possible by the fact that we have allowed government to define those things for us. We have allowed lukewarm, perfunctory, noncommittal “Christians” to tell us what parts of the Bible are relevant for our lives, which they don’t live; for our shoes, which they don’t wear; for our hearts, which they don’t supply the beat for.

Wake up! A house divided will never stand, yet we continue to stay divided while they continue to play church and continue to play democracy against us. And in our silence we continue to play nice. My heart hurts for this state. It hurts for the silence that some think doesn’t further add to the problem. It hurts for the crippling economy that our children are living in. It hurts for the label that the government has forced me to become.

Repeal HB 1523.



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