In this interview, Miss Universe 1997 Brook Lee talks with me about how straight people can be allies for LGBT rights. She also explains how her diverse heritage led her to become a strong supporter of the LGBT community.
Aside from remarks here and there, I had never directly taken up this issue with my mother. I had never had the provocation to do so until just last month, when a gay relative contacted my sibling to share that my mother had written him with a heavy-handed dose of spiritual advice.
My passion for being an LGBT advocate as a straight-identified person came from my personal journey and recognition from a very early age that equality was important because it could affect me, someone I care for or any other human being.
"Mom, I am evil, I am dirty, I am a liar." I am in shock. Why is she saying these horrible things? Did she kill someone? Did she steal money? Why is she in so much pain? Her words fill the room: "Mami, I am in love with a girl."
It is said that seven out of 10 people know someone who is LGBT, which means that the ally circle of reach will have a greater circumference if those allies can move beyond once-a-year support and be an ally every day.