Dear discrimination,

My old friend, how are you? It’s not been but a few hours since you last reared your ugly head and still here you are, again, with your words like knives and venomous teeth that cut and slice and damage souls. Even the most malice of actions can be justified; murder by way of self-protection for example or theft by way of provision. Bigotry however, has no excuse for its actuality yet plain as day you come again red with hate and blue with fear.

I remember vividly the first day we met, on the playground in first grade when another boy of only six years old already knew well such hateful words as “fag” and “prick.” Since then your evil presence has loomed over my life and lives of other minorities that surround me. I have watched you draw targets on the backs of my African-American classmates, enforce stereotypes upon immigrants, and create stigmas about my sister, nieces, and female associates. Your spirit has never garnered feelings of hope, inclusivity, or love but rather it has spread hatred to all those who are different from you, including myself and the other 1500 queer Americans who take their lives yearly using the ammunition you provide them.

When human affairs directly and negatively impact the lives of others in the ways that you do they become dangerous. When religious, social, and economic groups are formed on the basis of hate and exclusivity these groups become advocates for everything that this country was built upon fighting. Freedom, equality, and self-expression are basic human rights but your design of suppression and supremacy have been advocates for the direct demolition of these liberties. The sad and unfortunate truth you don’t realize is that is you aren’t just attacking the rights of the people you subdue, but by extension you also besiege your own rights.

Every time a black man becomes another headline as a result of police brutality your safety at the hands of the law also becomes compromised. Every time a child ends their life at the hands of hateful and prideful words of peers your rights of self expression follow them to their grave. Every time a woman is treated as an object or incapable your credibility goes down the drain just like the thirty cents she isn’t making that her male coworker is. Finally, every time you rear your ugly head with hateful words and actions that literally kill, I feel nothing more but a great drive to strike you down and shut you out just like you have done to me for twenty-two long years, and who is to stop me from trying?

Sincerely,

—m.h.

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