Improving both ourselves and our community in the new year
I can’t help but feel a sense of excitement whenever the new year rolls around. My jaded, world-weary self gets put away and the world feels full of possibilities (for a few weeks, at least). So in that spirit, here are some resolutions I hope our community can undertake in the coming year.
Let’s celebrate and reconcile our past
The opening of the new Michael Phair School in Webber Greens is bittersweet for me. Don’t get me wrong, I am thrilled beyond words that Phair’s extraordinary efforts have been recognized in this way and that generations of children will get to learn about the struggles of lesbian and gay Edmontonians (assuming any of them pay attention during assemblies).
I use “gay rights” very consciously, it’s not new to suggest that the winners of the gay rights campaign have been predominantly (but not entirely) white, cisgender, and male. But this doesn’t change the fact that early activists risked their careers, reputations, and lives to make space for a time when we can comfortably name a school after an early crusader.
Let’s get healthier
I am beyond thrilled that a resource like QUEERFLEX exists in our city.
QUEERFLEX is Canada’s first non-profit fitness facility for queer, trans* and non-binary people. Can you imagine if every fitness facility took a similar approach? This is what revolution looks like.
Go to the Pride Centre
Have you visited the new Pride Centre space? It’s beautiful. Upstairs from their old office (and still physically accessible) the space is full of light, wood and magic. If, like me, you haven’t been to the space for a while, it might be time to ask yourself why not? I know this idea exists in the community that the Pride Centre is only for those who are just coming out, new to the city, or in crisis, but it’s so much more than that. If you have the money to spare, consider donating. Who knows, one day you might find yourself in need of the space.