A Day Without A Gay – December 10, 2008
Hetherington said he has been careful to design A Day Without a Gay — he came up with the name after the film “A Day Without a Mexican” and liked it because it rhymed — so no one feels excluded or threatened.
How do you feel about this? Will you “call in gay” or “call in supporting equal rights for gay people” ?
I do think it would make a MASSIVE impression if every person who is gay or lesbian or bisexual or transgendered stayed out of work, spent no money and did volunteer work instead of working or spending money. That’s what is proposed by the organizers of this event.
The couple thought it would be more effective and less divisive if people were asked to perform community service instead of staying home with their wallets shut. Dozens of nonprofit agencies, from the National Women’s Law Center in Washington to a Methodist church in Fresno collecting food for the homeless, have posted opportunities for volunteers on the couple’s Web site.
Remember the movie A Day Without A Mexican? The designers of this event want to make the same point about the lgbt population in this country. Losing all the lgbt members of the population, workforce and shopping masses would put a huge crimp in the daily workings of the country. How huge? I don’t know. And, I don’t expect to find out.
I have mixed feelings about this idea. It came from people who have nothing to lose by “calling in gay”. But, what about all the not-out people who live in all the not-so-accepting parts of this country and work for not-so-open employers? I just can’t see it having the desired result.
Despite Hartzler and Hetherington’s attempt to fashion a positive approach, some organizers of the street demonstrations that drew massive crowds in many cities last month have been reluctant to embrace the concept, saying that it could be at best impractical and at worst counterproductive to “call in gay.”
I think the positive effect of this effort is already being seen. This plan has been picked up by the media, and it is gaining attention in the news. This is good. It is always good when we are reminded that not everyone is alike, and that’s okay. But, I fear for anyone who is not out at work who dares to “call in gay”. If a workplace is unfriendly enough that a person does not feel comfortable being ‘out’ at work, it will most certainly not be kind to the suddenly-out employee who “calls in gay”.
“It’s extra-challenging for people to think about taking off work as a form of protest, given that we are talking about people who may not be out (as gay) at work, and given the current economic situation and job market,” said Jules Graves, 38, coordinator of the Colorado Queer Straight Alliance. “There is really not any assurance employers would appreciate it for what it is.”
But, I could be totally wrong about this? What do you think? Should people “call in gay”? Will it make a difference in overall acceptance of non-heterosexual members of the workforce, society, shoppers?
Check out these websites. Give it some thought. And, come back and leave a comment.
Also, please answer my poll. Remember the poll allows you to write in an answer. Just don’t write anything you would not say to your mother. Thank you.
Will You Call In Gay?
[UPDATE: December 10, 2008 I’ve been looking at the two sites. You don’t have to call in. There is a lot you can do. The sites look really good. Be sure to check them out. http://www.daywithoutagay.org/ and http://jointheimpact.com/]
[UPDATE: December 11, 2008 5pm There are 16 responses to this poll so far. You are still welcome to participate, just answer with what you did. All answers beyond 16 responses include additional poll participants.]