Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day in America, and as we all know, that means eating turkey and side dishes drenched in butter until you're too comatose to argue with your relatives anymore.
One hopes that's not all it means, however. As the main harvest holiday in this country (though why it comes so much later than Canada's Thanksgiving which, in mid-October, makes much more sense for a harvest holiday, boggles somewhat), Thanksgiving is a great time to take stock, and of course, give thanks. In that spirit, here are a few things that I'm thankful for this year - and wishes for other things to change. I invite you to come up with lists of your own.
I'm thankful that I live in a country whose citizens can no longer be formally prosecuted for whom and how they (mutually consensually) love. The last ten years have seen the downfall of sodomy laws, the adoption of gay marriage or civil unions in several states, and a growing acceptance (or at least visibility) of alternative lifestyles including polyamory. While the religious right in this country shouts the loudest, here on the ground the forces of rationality and freedom keep quietly - and at times not so quietly - trucking along.
I look forward to the day when gay marriage - and even multiple marriage - are recognized as legitimate forms of relationship and given the same rights and protections that heterosexual married couples enjoy in every state in the union. And more importantly, to the day when these things will not only no longer be prosecuted, but will no longer be persecuted, either.
I'm grateful that just north of us, our neighbors in Canada are fighting the good fight to have loving polyamorous families protected from prosecution and jail. I look forward to the day when governments get out of our bedrooms once and for all.
I'm profoundly grateful to be living in a world with people in it who do such incredible, thankless work to spread a message of joyous, free, responsible eroticism as a birthright, and of education about sexuality to all who seek it. I look forward to the day when children are sanely protected from molestation and abuse, and 13-year-olds aren't jailed and labeled sex offenders for having sex with 12-year-olds.
I'm so thankful for the It Gets Better Project - and its offshoot, the Make It Better Project - and their message to queer teens that life is worth living, even if the right now is really, really hard. I pray for the day when no child will be so bullied and abused that he or she feels that it would be better to die than to see it through.
I'm thankful and moved, daily, by the amazing community I have around me in Boston - the poly folk, the kinky folk, all the beautiful freaks and allies that make this a safer, happier place to live for those of us who dwell outside the norm. I wish this kind of supportive and loving community on people everywhere, regardless of how you live.
And I'm endlessly blessed by all the loving people in my life, who nurture me and hold me up every single day.
I wish such blessings on all of you. Happy Thanksgiving.