Updated: Jun 28
There isn’t a time that I recall not being gay. Most of my youth — like way too many Queers in my era — was spent in fear of what being gay meant for my future. I’ve watched attempts throughout my life that shaped the fear, such as the AIDS crisis.
Television is an interesting barometer of our culture. It checks the pulse on what most people can handle. It was in our living rooms, and we were talking about who shot JR, Ellen’s coming out, and Monica’s turkey. And of personal importance, Will and Grace normalized Queerness into a path for me to come out of the closet.
Today, gender is represented with shows depicting Trans people as more than victims, same-sex love stories in mainstream primetime, and many other incredibly positive depictions. Hell, RuPaul has been on for like 13 seasons now, with Emmy awards under her belt.
Are queer people, like, normalized ?
At the same time as all of this progress, slacktivism is literally a share away, and being woke went from a badge of honor to being canceled. Queer rights are used for political meandering, and most people neglect to talk about the crisis with black trans women being murdered. In Minnesota, 40% of homeless youth are people that identify as LGBTQ.
Businesses are making commitments at Pride while simultaneously supporting anti-LGBTQ acts of hate through lobbying and political partnerships, and not developing inclusive spaces for their staff.
The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion™ industry has not done enough to center queerness in its work. I’m not calling out anybody here; I’m just saying there is room for Dorothy. We start with the groups at the back of the metaphorical line; the ones that have been most othered. Placing their challenges and successes at the center of our convo is what celebrating queerness is all about.
I realized that much of the DEI work I was doing didn’t activate people; instead of the workshops and trainings being a springboard, people perceived “doing the work” being the actual workshop. The framework we’ve designed for Dorothy is to make workshops a foundational time together and for organizations to set and share clear objectives for where they want to grow. We want activism to embed itself as an outcome, one that gets people involved in any way possible.
I founded Dorothy to recalibrate convos in an approachable, pragmatic, and practical way. The workshops are admittedly non-Western in their learning style, allowing people to grow peer-to-peer.
Dorothy is a partnership, a collaborator, and a place to question the decisions that we’ve made (individually and collectively) to see how we can do better.
We can’t wait to meet you. Drop us a line and let's talk about changing the world :)