Unfinished Lives

Remembering LGBT Hate Crime Victims

Happy Queer New Year 2012! Time to Be Yourself!

Petty Officer 2nd Class Marissa Gaeta (l), and Petty Officer 3rd Class Citlalic Snell (Brian Clark, Virginia Pilot)

“Be yourself no matter what they say!” ~ Sting, lyrics from “An Englishman in New York.”  In the New Year 2012, our wish for all our loyal supporters of the Unfinished Lives Project is for each and everyone of us to be ourselves–in hope and joy, need or plenty, LGBTQ and GenderQueer and Intersex, from every walk of life, ability or the lack thereof, and in the audacity of the queer imagination.

It has been a tough, heartbreaking, wonderful year, as the photo of the first official lesbian kiss for the U.S. Navy post-DADT testifies. Virginia Pilot photographer Brian Clark caught on the the most striking LGBTQ images of the year when Petty Officer 2nd Class Marissa Gaeta kissed her girlfriend, Petty Officer 3rd Class Citlalic Snell December 21 at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek in Hampton Roads, Virginia.  Petty Officer Gaeta had just completed a tour of duty that took her and the crew of the USS Oak Hill to Central America.  Officials acknowledged that the kiss, an iconic tradition in the Navy, is the first done by a same-sex couple in U.S. naval history.  The couple won a raffle to decide who would get the opportunity to carry out the tradition when the ship docked. From the Virginia Pilot:

Until September, when the military’s ban on openly gay service was lifted, they worked hard to keep their relationship secret. When Snell came home from her last deployment in August, kissing on the pier wasn’t an option.

“This is the first time we can actually show who we are,” she says.

Adds Gaeta, “It’s nice to be able to be myself.”

Yes.  It is nice.  And groundbreaking.  Every time LGBTQ people act according to their power, no matter what others may say, the world changes just a little bit more in favor of diversity.  That is worth celebrating!  From all of us at the Unfinished Lives Project Team to all of you, a wish for an authentically, joyously, fulfilling New Year!

December 31, 2011 Posted by | DADT, GLBTQ, Lesbian women, LGBTQ, U.S. Navy, Virginia | , , , , , | Comments Off on Happy Queer New Year 2012! Time to Be Yourself!

   

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