A few months back I had a little run in with someone. It wasn’t anything but speculation on his part, but there was some animosity nonetheless. Here we are months later and he found out that I was never his enemy and that we have more in common than not.

So we sit together now at meal times when we are able, he is black and has been down his whole life in prison. I am white and very openly gay. We shouldn’t even be in the same seating row together by prison standards, but we eat together, which is unheard of on both our parts.

After a whole bunch of mud got slung around on people’s names and feelings got hurt, I sat back and wondered if all my hard work towards equality has been ruined by a few jealous accusations? I voiced my concern that now my beloved LGBT community is fractioned and I am worried, how do I proceed?

Strangely enough, this man who is also Muslim (I forgot that part), let me know that I still have a job to do. I still have this neutrality that I must maintain if I want to bind people together into community. Just because people fraction, this does not mean my job is over. On the contrary, my loving spirit and main objective is more important now than ever.

I have always maintained (always meaning since I figured out I was better off loving people instead of fighting them) that enemies serve you no purpose. Friendships do. Just because someone slings mud in your eye does not give you rights to not forgive them and give them the out they need to maintain your friendship, even when it hurts.

So glad I am loved enough to be given sound advice…

With Love
Jeff Utnage