I Was Discriminated Against. Now What?

A few weeks ago, I sent an e-mail to a fellow blogger. In the e-mail, I asked her if I could write a guest post for her blog. A day later, I got an e-mail response from her telling me that I couldn’t be featured on her blog because… I was gay.

I know.

I was shocked, too.

Now, for the sake of convenience, let’s call this individual “A.” (In case you were wondering, “A” is not anywhere near this individual’s actual initials. I am not interested in calling this person out, but, unfortunately, I am going to have to still use her gender because it’s very confusing if you write in English without referring to a person’s gender, as you might know.)

Anyways, I had asked to write a guest post for “A”’s blog. Finally, I got a response from “A” and, as I said, she told me that I couldn’t be featured on her blog because I was gay.

Yup. Still shocked.

She didn’t explain exactly why she thought featuring an openly gay man on her blog would be a problem. (I didn’t say I was going to talk about being gay in the guest post, nor was I secretly planning to do so.) She just said she didn’t feel “comfortable” with me writing a guest post for her blog.

I don’t know. Maybe “A” feared that if she featured an openly gay blogger on her blog that a disco ball would immediately drop from her ceiling, rainbow confetti would shoot out from her laptop, and scantily clad gay muscle men would try to dry hump her while “Born This Way” by Lady Gaga played in the background.

I have no idea.

But that was it. That was her reply to me. Yeah. Still shocking.

Now, on my blog, I don’t keep it a secret that I’m an openly gay man. In fact, I think I’ve made it pretty clear in every way possible way that I’m an openly gay man without actually stating that I’m an openly gay man. I do this because I’m not particularly interested in shoving my sexuality in people’s faces every day.

The reason I’m not interested in consistently stating that I’m an openly gay man on my blog (other than the fact that I really shouldn’t have to constantly state that I’m an openly gay man on my blog) is because being gay is only a part of me. For me, it’s just a matter of fact. It’s not really a big deal.

You see, I am a very complex, multifaceted individual. Being gay, although it’s a very cherished part of who I am, is not all of me. It’s only a part of me.

I’m not just a gay man, I’m also a Latino. I’m also bilingual. I’m also a Californian. I’m also 26. I’m also a fiction writer, a blogger, a freelancer, a film lover, a former member of a High School Parliamentary Procedure team that won second place at Nationals (Future Business Leaders of America, HOLLA!), a Stanford graduate (go THE COLOR RED!), a former drama geek (go CHEKOV!), a wisdom seeker, a colleague, a friend, a brother, a son, a grandson, a proud citizen of these United States, a guy who ran a 5k and keeps postponing running a 10k because (let’s face it) he’s lazy, and most importantly a Battlestar Galactica superfan.

And even all of that still covers only about ¼ of who I am!

But I realize that all that “A” saw of me was that I was gay. For her, the incredibly complex human being I was had been immediately eclipsed by my sexual preference.

The fact that I was a good, compassionate fellow human being didn’t matter to her. What mattered to her was that she was “uncomfortable” with a part of me, and so she decided to reject, and humiliate, all of me.

Yup. Still shocking.

Well. What can I say? Her reply hurt. It still hurts. It was painful. Humiliating. It has made me feel very paranoid.

After I received her reply, I immediately shared this incident with family, friends, and even fellow bloggers. They were all more outraged than I was. They thought I should call this person out, have people boycott her and her blog.

But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that this was just not my style.

I received an outpouring of love, support, and understanding from these friends, family, and fellow bloggers, and I respected and understood why they would want me to call this person out.

But I knew that, in the end, I had to deal with this incident in the way that best suited me.

So, I decided that, rather than focus on “A” and the hate her and others may harbor towards gay people, like me, I decided to, instead, focus on fostering more love and acceptance in our community.

Now, this discrimination incident may have happened to me, but I believe it should concern everyone in our community because it threatens the kind of loving, open, and accepting environment the vast majority of us are trying to create.

This incident should concern you because if I can be discriminated against because of my sexual identity then what can stop other people from discriminated against you, or someone else you care about, simply because of who they are?

There does need to be some sort of response to this incident—at least in order to make sure no one else in the community is discriminated against for who they are. But we don’t have to fight hate with hate. We can fight hate with love.

Therefore, I am going to do two things today to help address this incident, and help spread the message of love and acceptance into the world:

  1. I’m going to introduce my new non-discrimination policy. (Actually I’ve always had this policy, but the good thing is that now it’s written down and will be on my About page so that everyone can see it):  “Courage 2 Create is committed to the principle of equal opportunity when it comes to choosing its guest bloggers and choosing who gets to engage in discussions. Everybody is welcome to share and read the content provided here. This blog does not discriminate against individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, ancestry, national or ethnic origin, or whether or not you are a Battlestar Galactica fan. Although, if you are not a BSG fan, you may never fully understand my consistent usage of the word “frak” as a suitable replacement for profanity. But that’s okay. I accept you as you are, and love you as you are.”  That’s it. That’s my non-discrimination policy. I invite you to write up a similar policy of your own and put it up on your own blog so that it’s clear that your blog is a loving and accepting environment for people of all stripes.
  2. Start a discussion: This is a blog, after all, and part of the way we deal with these types of issues in the blogging world is through a good ol’ community discussion. So, I wanted to ask you: how did you feel now that you’ve learned about this incident? Have you experienced a similar incident yourself? Or have you experienced another type of discrimination, or insensitivity, in the writing or blog world? If you did, how did the experience feel? What did you do about the incident? And finally: what steps do you think we as a community can, or should, take in order to make sure that this kind of thing doesn’t happen to anyone else?

I invite you to enter this discussion in the comments below.

Please, after you’re finished, I invite you to address this issue on your own blog and then ask your readers to join in on the discussion. (If you do this, please let me know so that I can then link to your post in this post.)

These two actions, I hope, will demonstrate that our community is one full of love and acceptance—a place where hate and bigotry are simply not welcome.

One thing before I end this: I want to give a special thanks to my family, my friends, and my fellow bloggers who have really helped me through this one. Their love and support gave me the strength and perspective I desperately needed.

I also would like to make it clear:  the vast majority of bloggers I have come into contact with over the past two years are amazingly inclusive, supportive, and very loving individuals. They would NEVER do what “A” did. The vast majority of them don’t have a hateful bone in their body.

So please don’t feel as if there are many “A”‘s out there. “A,” I have come to learn, is in a very small minority.

But I do have to say that, in the future, I will personally be looking out for non-discrimination policies on blogs to make sure where I am welcome and where I am not.

Finally, to conclude:

Although this incident has been painful to me, I will be fine. I always have been, and I always will be fine. I have plenty of people in my life who love and support me for who I am, and that’s what keeps me going strong, happy, and determined.

So, don’t you worry about me.

I ain’t going anywhere, and I never will.

much love,

Ollin

How do you feel now that you’ve learned about this incident? Have you experienced a similar incident yourself? Or have you experienced some other type of discrimination or insensitivity in the writing or blogging world? How did the experience feel? What did you do about this incident? 

And finally: what steps do you think the community as a whole can take to ensure that this kind of thing doesn’t happen again? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

>>> Update: Wow, what a tremendous response, readers! Thank you so much for all your love and support. For an update on this incident, please go here. Thanks!

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192 comments on “I Was Discriminated Against. Now What?

  1. How do you feel now that you’ve learned about this incident?
    I’ve learned you a good person and we need more ppl like you. People who don’t respond to hate with more hate and instead try to spread love and understand. Kudos to you! <3 I hope others take after your example because that's one way to ensure this doesn't happen to another.

  2. Ollin, kudos and more power to you. To my knowledge, as an openly gay woman, I haven’t had such an experience in the blogosphere. That said, the narrowness of some never ceases to shock; just as the openess of the many never ceases to amaze.

  3. Anne Kemp says:

    Wow. I am floored and hurt for you. This person has no class. Personally, I love your blogs and the insight you offer and sharing your journey as I make mine as well.

    Cause that’s what it is truly all about in the end. The journey we are all taking together and how we lift one another UP to reach our goals.

    You, sir, have CLASS.

  4. I am so angry I actually SCREAMED so loud my mom came rushing in. When I told her about what happened, she was so furious (my mom worked in a high school most of her life, so she hates any kind of discrimination and has seen what it can do to people, especially teens).

    I can’t believe this happened. IT IS ILLEGAL to discriminate like this. It is awful. I’m so angry I can barely type.

    Forget about disco balls and confetti popping out of her computer, a big old hand should come out and flip her off and hopefully that would get some sense into her.

    I’m so happy you’re okay now, and I admire you for being so calm and reasonable about it. I would have advertised her name in neon letters so that her blog followers find out what type of a person she is. I hope I don’t read her blog. I really do.

    Be brave, fight hate with love, and we’re all with you.

    • Ollin says:

      Thank you Christina. I’m sure if a vast majority of bloggers today address this issue on the blog and participate in the discussion I think that she’ll get the message loud and clear. I hope this happens. Thank you.

  5. shelley says:

    I embrace you regardless. Shame on that fellow writer who didn’t want your lovely presence on her blog. You’re right about fighting hate with love….it just takes too much energy and time to hate another.

    • Ollin says:

      I don’t wan’t to spread any negativity. It’s just not my style. Let’s show we’re an open community instead.

  6. I usually comment as Christina but for some reason I need to log in to my wordpress account now, so I’ll show up as Christinamarch

    I can’t believe this! I’m so angry that I SCREAMED so loud my mom came running in. When I told her what this woman did to you she got so angry and horrified (my mom worked in a high school most of her life so she has seen the horrible effects of discrimination, especially on teens).

    I’m so angry I can barely type!

    THIS IS ILLEGAL. I can’t believe that woman had the nerve to do this and then act like it’s alright.

    Ollin, I’m so happy you’re okay and are so brave. Keep fighting hate with love (although in your shoes I would’ve told everyone her name and what she did in a big neon banner so that her blog followers know how awful she is. I hope I’m not a follower. I’ll scream all over again if I am).

    Keep being the awesome person you are, and we’re all with you:)) we all love you. Forget about the idiots out there.

  7. Mary says:

    It sickens me to realize that there is a need for a statement of non-discrimination on a blog.
    What in the name of heaven does anyone’s sexuality, nationality, race, etc. have to do with their ability to create? I always look forward to your e-mails, Ollin. I very often skip others to see what you have to say — not because you are gay but because I like your style.
    After the first paragraph of this post I decided to write my own post about the topic. If it’s okay with you I’d like to like to this post.

  8. SpiderGoddes says:

    Wow! I cannot tell you how much that hurts my heart to know that people can behave so poorly. It is shocking. I am also sorry that you experienced that sort of rejection. No one deserves that.

    Unfortunately, I do not see how we can guard against such incidents. Bigots will be bigots, but I do think that informing the readership of such behavior is one way to let others make informed decisions on which blogs to follow. I respect you greatly for not blasting that person on your blog, but I hope that anyone who shared her ideas would not be part of my blog roll.

    Wow! I am still shocked!

    • Ollin says:

      I think that spreading the message of love and acceptance on all of our blogs today, or in the twitterverse or facebookworld, it would send a clear message to bigots that their hate is not welcome here. Let’s hope that happens.

  9. Ollin Morales, I accept you as you are, and love you as you are (even though you are a BSG fan)! You are one hell of a blogger and I always look forward to your posts. So I have just one single advice for you: keep on blogging and make this world a better place!
    Warmest hugs from Amsterdam!
    -Mina

  10. Lake Lopez says:

    I think I know what A stands for and it’s fitting. Sorry you had to deal with this foul creature. Keep the faith. LL

    • Ollin says:

      Haha! Honestly I just picked the first letter in the alphabet. But you can fill in what it means for you. I shall keep the faith. Thank you.

  11. zenhabits says:

    Great post & discussion. Fear of people who are different than us is unfortunately a pretty widespread thing, and discrimination is not going to end very soon. I think this discussion is a great way to help the process along, but in the meantime, an important question is: how do we deal with discrimination, fear, hatred when we are confronted with it? Do we internalize it and let it ruin our week, or can we forgive and return hatred with love? It’s not an easy thing in any case. Great work, Ollin!

    • Ollin says:

      Great question Leo.

      I know personally it took me some time. I had to take a breather for a while. Contact friends and fellow bloggers to see their perspective. That really helped. I took my time and waited until I was ready to address it.

      I think it’s good to take a breather, be present, feel the emotions. And wait until you can respond with love instead of hate. I’m a big believer that love is far more effective and powerful than hate–and giving hate only fuels it.

      Although I’m not sure I would judge someone else if they couldn’t respond with love. It is a very difficult thing to do.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this Leo!

  12. Here’s hoping Lady Gaga flies out the butt of everyone this ignorant.

    My response will be posting on my blog Wednesday along with a link to my own anti-discrimination guidelines, so stay tuned!

  13. Victoria says:

    Ollin: You are loved for exactly who you are and I know you know that. I am a PFLAG Mom with the most beautiful gay daughter so I am a fierce lion when it comes to discrimination of the sort you have just experienced. Blogger A is simply ignorant! My daughter has taught me so much and widened my world! Ollin, you too have taught me so much and widened my world but this has nothing to do with your being gay but because you are an incredible human being! much love, Victoria

  14. Hi, Ollin,

    Great post. I was shocked when I learned this had happened to you, and know that the other Top 10 Blogs for Writers winners will probably be rejecting any guest posts from this writer.

    I plan to do a post on the Renegade Writer blog with my own anti-discrimination policy when I have my thoughts in order. I have to say, I’m THRILLED that my blog attracts such a diverse readership.

    • Ollin says:

      Please do, and make sure to share the link with me so that I can share it on this blog. Thank you for your support, Linda. It means a lot to me.

  15. Laura says:

    I think this is very sad and upsetting; however, it’s not actually illegal, as many are saying here. A blog is completely up to each owner’s discretion. Completely– it can be about Hitler and how great he is or about some religion or other– or completely against some religion or other, race, person, etc.

    We, as readers, can make the choice not to support those that we feel discriminate, but we can’t police their choices. =/

    This particular blog post is a good way to spread your message and get the conversation started on equal opportunity blogging and guest blogging though.

    • Ollin says:

      I know, Laura. And that’s what’s incredible. But in the end, I wouldn’t have wanted to participate in her blog anyway if that is the way she felt. In the end all we can do is to have control over our own blogs and make it clear to readers that we foster a loving and supportive environment. That I think will send the right message.

  16. jess says:

    Ollin,
    I am very sorry to hear of your experience with “A,” though, perhaps unfortunately, not shocked. As a bisexual, Pagan, polyamorous woman, I have also come into contact with this kind of discrimination in my life. When I do, it can be hard to remember that those individuals are behaving FROM themselves and that it has not a thing to do with who I am nor is it an indictment of me as a person. I commend your decision to voice your experience in such a way that honors who you are (for everything that you are!) while transmuting that harsh and painful experience in order to foster love, acceptance, and understanding in the world. Keep on being who you be, darlin’ – your Presence in this world is healing in and of itself. I’ll be writing a post addressing this issue on my blog within the next day or two, as it relates to some stuff I’ve been working on healing lately myself. Much love and much gratitude to you, friend. :)

    • Ollin says:

      I’m sorry to hear you have experienced discrimination. You know this incident has made me realize that we should be able to talk about it. I know that even within those who have been discriminated against there is a feeling that you just don’t want to talk about it. I, myself, was reluctant to address this issue, because it caused me pain. But, we really do need to air out these kind of issues. As you said, at least so it can be healing for all of us.

  17. Janet Huey says:

    OMG-I am also floored. I have never thought of you as a gay, or male or anything other than a dedicated blogger/writer.
    I am sorry you are hurt, it is her limitation; as a mindless as if she turned you down for being a Californian..
    Ha, ironically she gave you great material for a terrific post!

  18. Hi Ollin!

    I absolutely LOVED this post. You did a great job in dealing with such a hard issue. I think what I love most about this post are the comments people have posted. It feels so great to know that you are loved and also to know how many of these bloggers will create their own discrimination policy. Thanks to you and thanks to your fellow bloggers because all this love just made my day :) Te mando un Abrazo hermano.

    Gil

  19. AnnieAlley says:

    Olin, like everyone else here, I am shocked and outraged by the way you were treated. What I will take away from this, however, is the exemplary way you are responding — with composure and class, and with a dedication to use this as a teachable moment.

    Thank you for sharing this experience, even though it is painful, and for doing it so well.

    And for the record, I’d love it if a disco ball popped out of my ceiling and my laptop spewed rainbow confetti… am I the only one here? ;-)

    Annie

  20. It made me upset for you–very–when I first heard about this, and it still makes me upset for you. For all of us who are open and honest people.

    Truth is, I didn’t know your sexual orientation when you guest blogged with Writer Unboxed–not the first time, not the second time. Now that I know, it won’t influence your ability to guest blog with us a third time or a fourth time either. We’ve never had to write a policy for WU, but Kath and I will definitely visit this issue as soon as we can and make clear that we share your views.

    Thanks for sharing this situation with us and for turning a definite negative into a potential positive for so many. I am happy–proud–to know the 1/4 of yourself that you share, Ollin. You rock.

    • Ollin says:

      Thank you so much Therese. It means a lot to me that you and Kath would address this issue on WU, seeing as the community there is so influential in the writing world.

      Thank you for your support!

  21. Larry Brooks says:

    What happened sucks on so many levels. Just be glad “A” is not family or your friend. Well done, Ollin.

  22. write2day says:

    I’m really sorry to hear that this happened to you. I appreciate that you maintained a positive outlook on the blogging world. Love your blog!

  23. April says:

    I am sorry you have experienced what a number of people I know have experienced: rejection, motivated by whatever registers as ‘reason’, for something that seems really shallow. As individuals, we are all really unique beings and it hurts to be singled out. It hurts to be treated in any way that feels devaluing. All I can say is…cyber hugs all around.

  24. Liana says:

    Sorry about that. “A” sucks, obviously, and you’re too good to guest on her blog. I hope she learns a thing or two from you about judging people. Thanks for sharing and being open about who you are.

  25. Hi Ollin,

    This makes me sad to think that someone would not accept your guest post because you are gay. Being a fellow Californian, I live such an open minded life that I find it hard to relate to this whole idea. My niche is addiction and there is plenty of stigma there as well. As you say you are a multidimensional person, and honestly the background you mentioned makes you sound so interesting. People miss out on talent when they put the blinders on. Just wanted to add you have an open invitation to do a guest post on my site if you are ever interested. You are clearly a gifted writer.

    • Ollin says:

      Thank you Cathy. Maybe you can come and guest post on the C2C and talk about addiction. That is a topic I haven’t covered on the blog yet and I personally would be interested in hearing more about it and how it appeals to writers. If this interests you, let me know!

  26. Wow. Part of me wishes you would tell us who this person was because I hope I am not following that persons blog! I understand the approach you have taken though. I think what needs to be done is to make an official draft of a “bloggers against discrimination” pledge and then create a logo that we can all put on our blogs to show we have agreed to this pledge. Then those that do not put the logo on their blog will stand out to the rest of us.

    I always feel really uncomfortable when all of a sudden someone outs themselves as fearful and small minded. Its weird, you think you know them and then bam they say something completely hideous to you. And then what do you do? Do you stand up in the room full of people and call them out for it? Making yourself out to be the aggressor in the process. Do you tell them off quietly? Again becoming a center of negativity and aggression. Or do you quietly find an excuse to slip away and do your best to avoid them in the future?

    I hope you don’t let this get to you for too long. You have a great blog and don’t deserve to be treated with such disrespect. If it makes you feel better you can guest post on my blog any day–with its all of 9 followers LOL. I am sure there are plenty of other bloggers out there, with more followers, who would also extend that offer.

    • Ollin says:

      All great questions Amanda! And a great suggestions. What does everyone think of Amanda’s suggestion?

      As far as how to respond to these things: I’ve learned to pick my battles. It can be exhausting to always have to be the brave one that calls someone. In the end, meeting this people love is the best response–it doesn’t take any negative energy to do so. Although, either way, thinking about this kind of thing is painful. I don’t know.

      Thanks for such a thoughtful response!

      • I would happily place a “non-discriminatory” logo on my blog. One concern is that it may do harm to those who don’t follow this blog, or to those who come into the blogging world after the memory of A’s response has passed into the hole of despicable behavior where it belongs.

        Nothing wrong with making it a positive statement. I would caution against making the assumption that the lack of the badge suggests a bigoted or biased blogger. They may simply be uninformed.

        At the risk of sounding like the old “some of my best friends are…”

        My circle of friends would not be as enriching, vibrant and robust as it is if I didn’t embrace all ethnicity, religions, sexual orientations, weights, heights, careers, hair color, social standing, dress quirks, harmless fetishes, genre reader/writers, extro and introverts…

        Wonderful way to handle yourself and this issue, Ollin.

        • Ollin says:

          Great point, i don’t want to make it a default that people who don’t have the badge are bigoted or biased. But how else could we make it clear that we are loving and accepting? All tough questions but that’s what the discussion is for, right?

  27. Mary Jaksch says:

    Well done for standing up and speaking out, Ollin. As you know, I was shocked when you told me about this nasty incident, as I strongly condemn any kind of discrimination.

    Your readers may like to know that I’ve since asked you to be a regular contributor to WritetoDone.com

    Mary Jaksch,
    Chief Editor, WritetoDone.com

  28. Olin, thanks for sharing your experience. I’ve never understood why anyone would care what I do behind closed doors, as long as I don’t hurt anyone or involve children in activiites they’re too young to decide about. I mean really.

    at the same time, I take great exception to people necking in the park or at the fair or wherever. hetero, gay or lesbian – take it inside because i don’t want to see it. In the same way that i don’t want to watch you go to the bathroom. sheesh –

    sorry you had to experience this. thanks again for sharing

  29. I’ve recently started following your blog and I think it’s amazing! Amazing, insightful writing like this can only come from an amazing and insightful soul, Ollin. Which is why I almost feel sorry for “A.” She clearly lacks what you have, and probably has a long, painful road ahead of her. Perhaps you’ve given her the opportunity to do some soul-searching, who knows… All I know is that YOU ROCK! Thanks for sharing this. Soldier on, my friend. :)

  30. melissadonovan says:

    It breaks my heart when people treat other people with hatred, indifference, and ignorance. I admire your strength and ability to take the high road by turning a painful experience into a positive message. Writing Forward will be adding a non-discrimination policy to its submission guidelines. Thank you for sharing your story, Ollin. This is something we all need to be more aware of.

  31. Sad really, that “A” is so afraid that she can’t look beyond her own fear and misses an experience of meeting new people.

    I commend the way you handled this situation. The world does need more positive than negative actions/reactions when confronted with discrimination.

    This- “So, I decided that, rather than focus on “A” and the hate her and others may harbor towards gay people, like me, I decided to, instead, focus on fostering more love and acceptance in our community.” Made me smile and think and release the initial anger I felt from the beginning of your post.

    Thanks Ollin for being the person that you are. I also greatly appreciate your inspiring post today.

  32. Ollin, I am so sorry this has happened to you. Seriously, it boggles the mind to know there are such closed-minded moronic human beings like this on this planet. They’re not worthy of your time, and I’m glad you’ve decided to speak about it, but sorry you had to go through this.

  33. marcia4d says:

    I suspect your blogger is an evangelical Christian, as I am. If she’s a professional in the Christian publishing industry, she may be concerned about backlash from the gatekeepers (publishing companies, booksellers, and the like), regardless of what her personal opinion is. I hear this so often that I’m used to it, even though I think it’s ridiculous…especially since many evangelical Christians have loved ones who are gay, don’t think being gay is a big deal, or are gay themselves. If I ever get my blog back up and running, I would be honored to have you as a guest blogger.

    • Ollin says:

      You know, I always am surprised: didn’t Christ teach love and not hate? I wonder if one day the lightbulb will switch on for these people and they’ll wonder: “how could we have ever gone against the very teachings that our highest spiritual teacher believed in?”

      Well, I appreciate you sharing your thoughts with us. And thank you for your support!

  34. [...] Ollin Morales at Courage To Create – Love the message in his post today. A must [...]

  35. A. Victoria Mixon, Editor says:

    Ollin, I applaud your courage. Boy, it takes a big person to look bigotry in the eye and respond, not with outrage, but thoughtfulness and good heart the way you have.

    There’s no room on this crowded planet for the ego and self-righteousness behind discrimination.

    If you love and are loved–whoever your beloved is–you’re carrying a candle in the dark for all of us.

    • Ollin says:

      Haha. It helped that I took some time to compose myself. I think my initial anger was anger. But as I’ve said, love is a better way to deal with hate.

      Thank you for your thoughts. What a beautiful sentiment that I’m sure we all agree with.

  36. Well, I posted about it on my blog. I was shocked, but not surprised. People astound me. I pointed folks to this post. So check it out if you would like.

    • Ollin says:

      Thanks! Make sure to provide a link to the post.

    • Apologies…I am apparently having one of those days. You have definitely handled the situation with more human-ness than most would, including me. You have also made me take stock of how I am putting myself out there.

      The blog post you can see if you go to my blog (Disrupted Harmony – just click me, I think.) If that doesn’t work, I will be happy to give you appropriate info. Thank you.

  37. Rights, Respect & Recognition are not given, but earned.
    The 3 R’s? Adding the ‘s’ is for Sharing.
    Thanks for sharing.

  38. It seems like you have made the very best out of a potentially negative situation. Very impressive.

  39. cnnevets says:

    There’s often an image of writers as being somehow elevated and about the run-of-the-mill rednecks of the world. It’s humbling and saddening, but not surprising, when we’re confronted by the disgusting part of their human nature. I’ve been shunned out of some writer subcommunities, but always so far for the content of my writing (e.g., the use of profanity or my choice of topics). While those reactions have really been less about critical analysis and more about knee-jerk, discrimination-like responses, they don’t approach the sort of gut-level discrimination that cuts off a person because of factors that don’t pertain to his work or his contribution to your work or in any way to his interaction with you. I appreciate the level-headed tone of your response to the situation. I’m impressed. I find myself hoping that A will be embarrassed into an apology or a public comment of some sort. I suspect that is highly unlikely.

  40. inkspeare says:

    I am sorry you had to go through that; you are an amazing person and have always given the best of you to all your readers. Unfortunately, there are people who only pay attention to labels and cannot appreciate a person for what they have to offer. Discrimination of any kind will always exist, and it is painful and hurtful. I know it is a cliche but I always keep this in the back of my mind – “What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.” I know you can only get stronger and keep offering your readers the best of you, today and in your brilliant future as a writer as well. Blessings :)

  41. Linda says:

    You are one of the bravest people I know, Ollin. Thank you for speaking out so that others can do the same. <3

  42. I’m so sorry you had to go through that hon :(

    xx

  43. Patrick says:

    All I gotta say is… “Word!!”

  44. Keith Hobman says:

    Ollin wrote: “…disco ball would immediately drop from her ceiling, rainbow confetti would shoot out from her laptop, and scantily clad gay muscle men would try to dry hump her while “Born This Way” by Lady Gaga played in the background.”

    I’m an openly hetereo person, but I would IMPLORE you to guest blog (if I had a blog) just to see this…

    Too funny.

    Seriously, I dropped into your blog for the first time via ‘Simple Links’. I’m impressed when a person takes a negative incident and makes something positive out of it. I’m not condoning ‘A’ at all, but I am so impressed with your response I just had to write.

    • Ollin says:

      Welcome, Keith. This is a pretty out-of-the-ordinary post for me to write. Most of the time I just write about writing and life and wax philosophical, lol. But I hope you enjoy the blog!

  45. menwithpensteam says:

    Coming from Canada, I find it hard to wrap my head around this sort of discrimination. That said, I didn’t change my name from my clearly-female given one to a man’s name for nothing.

    You called it out, you called it well, and you go, Ollin. Walk tall and proud, because you’re a better person for facing adversity like this… and shining through.

  46. Anyone who slaps a label on someone else and decides “Well, that’s all there is to this person” shortchanges that person … AND themselves. I’ve been discriminated against because I’m a woman (and I was very fortunate that so many men – and women – helped me in my radio career that was dominated by men when I first started in 1977) … and because I’m older. We all bring something to the table. Ollin, you’re welcome to grace our family’s table any time. Ignore those who don’t value “all” of you. They’re missing out on the great advice and insights you offer.

    • Ollin says:

      That’s terrible Judy. I’m so sorry you had to go through that. But I am more glad that you didn’t all that stand in your way. I admire you for that. It can be a struggle. Thanks for your support!

      • As I was growing up, a popular expression I learned was: “The same fire that forges steel also melts butter.” You just can’t let the nattering nabobs of negativism (former Vice President Spiro Agnew coined this for the “press”) get you down. Stay strong.

  47. I dunno man, what happened doesn’t surprise me in the least, otoh I’m not sure I could have risen above it and not named names.

    It would be super cool to think things will change will change by taking the high moral ground, but will they or does this woman need to know that her reaction was way out of order?

    • Ollin says:

      You know what Tim? I’m sure most people would probably have done what you suggest–and I personally would have supported that. I think it’s up to people. If this happened to someone else, I hope they feel free to do what they think suits them best and is in their best interest. Maybe they do call the person out, I don’t know.

      But I have a different way of going about things. I don’t know. I just don’t want to waste any day on hate if I can help it. And I can help it today, so I say: let’s focus on the love.

      Trust me, I’m pretty sure she’s gotten the message. (Probably already.)

      But thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. Certainly I’m not proposing everyone handle this situation the way I did. It’s up to that person–certainly.

  48. Ollin

    I share your shock. I never thought I would have to even consider a non-discrimination policy in this community…isn’t openness a given?

    And I love your approach. When you call hate out of the closet, it looks so small and stupid in the light. You humble me with your graciousness and bravery.

  49. Chihuahua0 says:

    Ouch. This “A” really needs to be careful. If you wanted to, you could’ve said his/her name and possibly hurt his/her chances of writing a guest post, but that wouldn’t be the right thing to do.

    Hmm…I think a couple of people should read this.

  50. Paul Jun says:

    Not calling her out? That is so un-gay of you. ;)

    How you handled this is shows your level of maturity and professionalism, so good for you man. I saw the headline of this and was shocked by the story — I didn’t know bloggers had it in them.

    Keep up the good writing, and pay no mind to those trolls. It’s a sad story to see this, but I’m glad you brought this to light. It’s definitely a topic that the community should be aware of.

    (I literally just wrote a post, too, on The Art of Non-Judgement . . . sigh -__-)

  51. Sunshine says:

    Hey Ollin,
    Sorry to read your heart ache but with great obstacles also comes sweet growth and wisdom. I don’t always make it over here but when I do, your writings are always so helpful.
    I’m still learning about this blog world but so far, I’ve realized, it’s not much different from our real lives. We must carry on in love and peace regardless of the chaos that swirl around us.
    ~Abundant blessings to you . . .

  52. Ollin, I totally didn’t know you were gay until a while after following your blog, and I was like, “meh.”
    Meaning,.. I didn’t care!!!! People are so hung up on stuff they needn’t be hung up on.
    So you’re gay, so what?
    I am an alcoholic/addict clean & sober six years this May. I know people look down on me for that (some not all) and you know what? That is their problem. .
    You’re an awesome human being, Ollin!!!!!!!

    • Ollin says:

      I’m sorry to hear people look down on you for being an addict. That’s awful. One day we will live in a more compassionate, loving world. I know we will.

  53. “How do you feel now that you’ve learned about this incident?” I am stunned that this level of bigotry exists. I know it does of course – one only has to read the papers – but to hear of such targeted attacks is very confronting to my (possibly naively optimistic) world view. What makes this bizarre and cruel is that she would be unaffected by your presence on her blog. Still, after a strange and unexpected encounter with a very angry woman in the supermarket the other day, I see that in the midst of all the ‘normal’, good-hearted people out there, there are some who are doing life the hard way. ‘A’ is clearly one of them.

    • Ollin says:

      It’s hard, because optimistic people tend to avoid negative people and so we often forget that not everyone is like us. But they do exist in the world, sadly.

  54. This is rather shocking Ollin, as I too have found the blogging world to be very much a world of love and acceptance.
    That said, I wouldn’t waste too much more effort on one misguided person. They will always exist and we just have to work around them.
    I think that my blog’s concept of Love Others, Love the Earth, Love yourself is probably anti-discrimination in and of itself but there will always be those who are too fearful to get it.
    It is after all fear that causes us to discriminate and I cannot be tempted to pray for all of the A people of the world that they find a way through their fear and learn to love…
    So sorry you had to go through this.

  55. Oh, Ollin, I had a visceral reaction when I read your post. I am so sorry to hear of your unfortunate experience with “A”. My first thought was that her reaction says so much more about her than you. We are all a composite of many features. The fact that you are gay has absolutely no bearing on your worth as a human and your talent as a writer. You’re a wonderful person who does so much to touch the lives of others in a positive,compassionate and meaningful way. I would jump at the chance to have you do a guest post on my blog so let’s talk :-)
    Blessings,
    Kathy

  56. You are welcome to come on over and guest blog on my blog any time!

  57. Sorry to hear about your having such an unpleasant experience. Good for you that you are not “hating” on this person as that is like giving them free rent in your head. She is the one losing out as she has summarily cut many wonderful people out of her life with this judgement.

  58. danezeller says:

    Ollin, I, too, am uncomfortable about your status. I never knew you were…how can I say this straight out… “a former member of a High School Parliamentary Procedure team.” Now, some of my best friends have been on Parliamentary Procedure teams, but we prefer to keep quiet about that. Just like “A,” I’m sorry to say, you will not be able to guest blog for me. It’s my policy. I hope we can remain writing friends.

    • Ollin says:

      Discrimination against Parliamentary Procedure! But it’s the way to run business and government meetings. Congress uses Parli Pro… oh wait, that probably is not the best example, haha!

  59. P. says:

    You are AMAZING Ollin! I admire your candor and your elegant style. You teach me a lot, and I’m twice your age! “Consider the source!” This woman is living in a psychological “ghetto” without real heart if she is comfortable saying that being uncomfortable with your sexuality is in any way a legitimate reason to not have you post.

  60. Min says:

    I’m sorry to hear about what you’ve experienced but very heartened to see your reaction to such discrimination. Fighting hate with hate will only perpetuate more of that dreadful stuff and well, the world has too much of it anyway. Kudos to you Ollin! :)

    Coming from another perspective, I think the misconceptions (for lack of better words) goes both ways. My gay friends also see me in a single facet and refused to come out to me because they feared that I’d judge them for being gay. I had to drop bombshell hints (because if they had other reasons for not telling me, that’s their prerogative) before they realised that their “secret” changes nothing in our friendship. It kind of hurts to know that people think I’d refuse to be friends with them just because they’re gay.

    • Ollin says:

      You know it’s difficult. The truth is gay people have more to lose if they trust the wrong people. In some states we could be physically abused, constantly taunted ridiculed and humiliated (aka mental and emotional abuse), lose our jobs, or even be killed for being who we are. This is a sad fact, but it is still very much the reality.

      So you cant blame a gay person for being overly cautious. You shouldn’t take it personally. Just say you love Lady Gaga. It takes care of everything. We’ll know right away that you’re supportive of us. :)

  61. RD Meyer says:

    Ollin,

    It honestly never occurred to me to think of you as gay, straight, bi-linguil, or even afraid of dwarves(I don’t know about you, but dwarves make me have bad bad thoughts), b/c it’s your writing that has drawn my attention. You’ll never please everyone, and so I wouldn’t waste effort trying. Those who care are those who don’t matter, and your talent speaks for itself.

    Still, I’m not sure we could hang out. After all, you are from California, and, well, it’s wrong to be Californian. ;-)

    Russ

  62. Manali Shah says:

    Straight or not, you have my full support, Ollin! :)

  63. It’s a real shame that in 2012 you (or anyone really) has to be subject to such discrimination and very narrow mindless attitude.

    I for one say carry on doing what you do best…being you – that’s what I appreciate about you and your writing.

    Steve.

  64. I’m so shocked (and sorry too for you that this happened…). And this made me angry. I do hope you’ll change your mind and call “A” out because then other bloggers (like me) would be able to avoid her blog, like we should. Maybe then she’d feel the heat of her really bad judgment. (And if it was a paid writing gig then it may not be bad judgment but illegal — certainly if she was an employer, and maybe the same is true for freelance…) In any event, purely selfishly, It really disturbs me that I may be supporting anyone who does this! Aside from the discrimination, “A” is also cutting herself off from the best part of blogging: being able to be friends with and embracing the multi-faceted-ness we all have.

    • Ollin says:

      No it wasn’t a paid gig. If that was the case I would call her out because that is illegal. But unfortunately as far as I know there is nothing in the books to discriminate when you’re just a blogger. But if you do find some legal grounds, let me know!

  65. [...]  I Was Discriminated Against, Now what?  [...]

  66. Jodie says:

    You do not need to call someone out who’s own negativity will do it for her, eventually. :) So Bravo for how you did handle the situation, and your hurt. :) I’m sorry you had to experience it, but you did write a fabulous post, and you have brought this issue to my attention at least. I now plan on writing a nondiscrimination policy for my blogs, something I had not thought I needed to do before.
    Bravo, and thank you. :)

  67. erikamarks says:

    Ollin, the outpouring of love that is coming from this horrific experience is all the proof you need that for every one of the “A”s in the world, there are ten times as many of us here to encourage and support. I echo Victoria in saying that by taking the higher road and using this as an opportunity to open a dialog was a tremendous thing for you to do–and will bring such a wealth of positive, loving energy into the world, which as we all know, is the best weapon against discrimination. Hugs to you.

    • Ollin says:

      Erika, it has been TRULY AMAZING. The response to this post has been one of the best experiences of my life. I have renewed faith in blogging, bloggers, and humanity in general. I know that we, together, will one day beat all the haters of the world. I took a bet that love would be more powerful than hate in my response to this incident, and my bet paid off big. I am more confident in the universal laws of love because of this. Thank you.

  68. Thank you for writing this. Thank you for sharing this. Thank you for the reminder that fighting hate with hate will get us nowhere. My initial reaction was boycott A’s blog, but you are wise. This is an incredible community. We have the right to chose how we interact on this community. I suppose that includes only welcoming opinions from people who think the same as you do, but what a waste of time then. If someone is not willing to be open and learn from the ideas posted in the world of blogging, then they shouldn’t be blogging. Last year (in October) I was attacked for supporting a fellow blogger who chose to not publish hateful and hurtful comments on his blog. I was called and idiot and a liar, among other things. It hurt and was scary and made me doubt putting myself out there anymore. I kept going, but I still occasionally have my doubts. But, reading people like you makes me feel brave.

    You have gained a follower.

    Lisa

  69. christine says:

    Bravo, Ollin. I, too, believe that my gender and sexual preference constitute only a tiny fraction of who I am. Now, I apologize that I am not a Battlestar Gallactica fan (I am sure I would love it if I saw it…), but you sound like a damned fine human being. Thanks for the terrific post and the candid manner in which you tell your story. This story needed to be told.

    Cheers!
    Christine

  70. I am sorry that you were hurt by A’s comments. Not all conservative straight married women embrace her narrowmindedness. I haven’t had guests post a blog post on my blog, unless they were an author spotlighting their book. However, if you want to guest blog, I’d love to have write a piece for my blog. The only criteria I have IS that a disco ball appear and confetti fall from the sky. Oh, and we need music!! However, I’m partial to ” It’s Raining Men”….is that possible??

  71. Dan says:

    Ollin, may the gods bless you. I work in public service and I am an openly gay male. I also have a few other quirks that make me unique as well. I don’t shove my “gayness” or my “new age beliefs” in the faces of others, nor do I hide who I am either. However, I do still got comments and weird looks at work sometimes, based on overheard conversations I have with coworkers and it hurts sometimes. I was born and raised in the “Bible Belt” and the “Coal Fields” of southern WV and still live in the “Bible Belt” in NC. It still hurts that even though we are in the 21st century, people still live as if we are in the Inquisition. You handled the situation very well and are to be commended. You and your blog have inspired me to delve into my own inner desires of writing and for that I thank you. I would have told her to kiss my FRAK! Nevertheless, you showed who the bigger person was and should be commended. Not implying anyone is or isnt a Christian, I am not, however. Nevertheless, I find it curious how most NON-Christians follow the Christian beliefs more than Christians: Love they neighbor and thyself and judge not lest ye be judged. Okay, I come off my soap box now. You are to be commended and blessed be!!!

  72. [...] when I read of one of my new favorite blogger’s recent experience with discrimination, I was not surprised. Sadly, “A” has not yet come to learn what I recently have. I have [...]

  73. As usual your response to a problem was extraordinary. I’m glad you didn’t go after ‘A’. Let her be in her small world.

    I remember you read Gandhi’s autobiography (right?) You took those lessons to the heart. Proud to know you!

    • Ollin says:

      Yes, I did Keshav. And I’ve seen, firsthand, just how effective Ghandi’s approach is. He was a true, spiritual genius.

  74. [...] Of course, this freedom the Internet gives us can be used for good or ill. I recently found this out when a writer friend of mine was discriminated against by another blogger because he’s gay. [...]

  75. Cege Smith says:

    I bumped over from Carol Tice’s blog. It is upsetting to see that this type of behavior still exists, and I think it is a wonderful thing that you are doing by bringing it out in the open and encouraging people to talk about it. I can only hope it will help open the eyes of some of those who still carry these types of sentiments around inside of them. Thank you for sharing this experience so openly and eloquently.

  76. [...] Blog Update: Due to the overwhelming response to Monday’s post on discrimination, and the incredibly rich and thought-provoking discussion we had in the comments, [...]

  77. Kathleen says:

    Ollin,

    I have just started reading your blog and I am enjoying it very much. You are an excellent writer. I amazed at the level of “anti” present in this country at the moment. I am sixty years old, white, female, straight and try my best to act like a Christian. I am blown away by all the hate I perceive toward…almost anyone who is “other” in any way: gay, “not white”, Muslim, educated, female, etc. I think it is fear-based but that doesn’t make it any easier to listen to or swallow. Nor does that excuse it irrational as it may be. You are to be commended for taking the high road. It must have been tempting not to. As for me, while I suspect I am not your audience, being neither young or “cool”, I will keep you bookmarked because I love your blog. Keep up the great work.

  78. You know, I hadn’t thought of putting an anti discrimination policy on my blog but today I will. Seems like in this day and age we should be past that kind of stuff. But your experience has had far more impact in the world than this nasty creature and her outdated prejudices. We as writers (of whatever specialty) have a unique gift and a responsibility to turn over the rocks and expose these ugly things to the light — and the internet does make it easier for us to use our powers for good! Great blog, and great for you that you put this whole experience out in the world.

  79. W says:

    I almost wish you had called out ‘A,’ although I understand why you didn’t.

    Unless she runs a blog that’s exclusively about campaigning for Rick Santorum or picking up hot chicks, it’s just a bizarre reaction.

    Clearly, you got a lot more out of this than a bit of traffic from some bigot’s site. Good on ya.

  80. I came here from Carol Tice’s site, and I’m glad I did. I love that you took a negative situation and responded in such a positive way. I will be writing non-discrimination policies for my blogs, too.

    P.S. I love that you refer to the blogger in question as “A.” Pretty Little Liars fan?

    • Ollin says:

      Haha. You know, it’s amazing how people have taking the “A” to mean so many things I did not intend. I literally just wanted to replace her name with something far from her initials, and I usually refer to people in my life on my blog with letters, not full names. So I say “my friend P and I” “my friend E” and I. Usually that makes it so that only the person I am talking about knows I’m talking about them.

      In this case, I just picked the first letter of the alphabet. But it seems the name has taken on a life of its own!

  81. Jo Pro says:

    You are a REMARKABLE person and I can attest to this because I personally know you!!! =D You’re definitely an inspiration to us. Continue to love and fight for what you believe in! Love ya!!!

  82. dali0707 says:

    Well OK, I hope I didn’t miss my chance here. I have been woefully behind in following my blogs and when I saw this post I said to myself this sucks.
    I cannot believe that in the year 2012, that this stuff still happens. Maybe it’s even getting worse. I read that when the movie “The Hunger Games” came out this past weekend there were tweets from people who were upset that some of the characters are black. Totally disgusting.
    You really spelled it out well in your post in the paragraph about who you are. I only care that you are a good writer and have a great blog. You know on one level, I wanted to know who A was so that I could go there and tell her what I thought. But another great thing about you is that you are a class act and it was a classy thing to do not to reveal her identity. As for me, it goes without saying that all are welcome, just be a good person with something to offer (not matter how big or small) or a question and you are very welcome. Nothing else matters. You can be who you are it’s always OK. We are all different in some way aren’t we? Thanks for a great blog.
    David

  83. Pinar Tarhan says:

    This is utterly crazy. How does your being gay have anything to do with what you are writing in the first place? It is not like you wanted to marry her daughter – then she could have a reason to reject you:D Seriously, though. I can’t believe what she did. I know the world is full of all sort of discriminations, and I hate that.
    But what I find interesting is that she knew you were gay- which would mean she read your stuff continuously. Which would mean she is a follower of yours. So it makes it even more ridiculous that she rejected your writing. Or she doesn’t read you, but she just googled your name, typed “gay” in the find tab because that’s what she does with all potential guest posters.
    I wish you were mean enough to out her….I’d hate it if I were one of her twitter followers or something… :)

    • Ollin says:

      I think it’s important that we all make an effort to show that we are loving and accepting people, and the rest will take care of itself. I know it.

  84. I *was* going to ask you to do a guest post on my blog, but if there’s no confetti or dry humping men, then forget it. I don’t see the point.

    I’m wondering. Would it have been as hurtful if “A” had turned you down because she said you weren’t funny or your writing wasn’t good enough?

    Your response was definitely classy. I admire that.

    • Ollin says:

      Well, in that case, I would just not work with her and leave it at that. Criticism is something COMPLETELY different from discrimination.

  85. Just dicovered your blog, thanks for giving me the courage to create and be who I am!

    Much love, brother.

  86. Just a quick note, and not directly on topic, either. FYI, I’m not gay/lesbian, or anything else someone might find controversial (I’m about as plain vanilla as you can get).

    As a good Christian woman, the daughter of a minister, I encountered the issue of “is being gay evil, or against God’s plan for mankind?” This was many, many years ago. I worried about that question for awhile. And then I realized that I knew one person who was gay — a young “Timothy” (potential young minister) in our church, as fine a young man as I’ve ever known. He was bright, funny, and I really admired him. Once I realized he was gay, I had a touchstone. It was impossible to think of Dick McAfee as a bad person in any sense of the word. If he was gay, how could there be anything wrong with it? And then I had an epiphany: figuring out the wrong or right of it isn’t my job! God’s the judge, not me. I’m just a poor human who doesn’t know the whole picture or really much of anything else, for that matter.

    Do I trust God? Absolutely. So I guess I don’t have to judge gays, lesbians, or anyone else on this earth. God gets to be the judge; my job is just to love the people He created and let go of the rest of it.

    That turned out to be an awfully easy decision, given how explosive the “issue” was in those days. And it works in all kinds of contexts, not just gay vs. straight. As a hetero woman, WHO CARES? Let people live their lives as they see fit.

    If I ever have a blog, you’ll be welcome to post there. And anyone else who has something to say that my readers will be interested in.

    “A” has just missed out on a great opportunity by cutting you out of hers.

  87. much love there Ollin, keep on rolling under the stars x

  88. akathryntrombly says:

    Ollin,

    I’m SO proud of your reaction and response to this experience. Instead of continuing that train of negativity and pain, you’ve chosen the opposite. By using this as a teaching moment, you are flipping this into something much more positive and healing. Bravo my friend, and THANK YOU for standing tall, for sharing your light with all of us, and for being who you are.

    Always,

    ~Kathryn

  89. 83October says:

    Reblogged this on Eighty Three October and commented:
    I wish we can all go past the labels and see the person. Ollin says it quite well, he may be gay, but that’s not who he is. I’m reblogging this because I think its something we need to be reminded about…

  90. smorehead says:

    Ollin, you are welcome as a guest blogger on my page anytime!

  91. [...]  read are more personal, some are more topic centered and some are somewhere in between. I read Courage 2 Create to remind myself that’s ok for life to get in the way of writing sometimes, my life does [...]

  92. AmandahBlackwell says:

    Discrimination

    Now that I think about it, I guess the only discrimination for me would be in my family. I was born in the Midwest and don’t agree with the opinions around family and earning a living. For example, when I moved to Arizona in 2007, you would have thought I did something horrible. I was quite happy in the “Valley of the Sun” and began my freelance writing career in Chandler, Arizona. However, some family members couldn’t believe I moved over 2,000 away from my mom and sister. They couldn’t understand why I wanted to be a freelance writer. One relative called me a few times during the week and on the weekends to voice her concern. It threw me for a loop. I’m a grown woman!

    I thank God my parents didn’t “coddle or shelter” me as a child. My mom and dad taught me to think for myself — not to follow the crowd or opinions of others. I should draw my own conclusions.

    Insensitivity in the blogging/writing world

    Sometimes, I feel like ‘seasoned’ writers, especially those who’ve been writing for 15+ years, are condescending towards younger/newbie writers. They come off as being helpful, but when you listen to their words and tone of voice, they have a snarky and snide tone. Maybe it’s their personality. Maybe it’s just me. I’ll meditate on it. :)

    Final thoughts

    I like what Jim Rohn said, “Success is doing ordinary things extraordinarily well.” I think the community could follow their hearts. Embrace who you want to embrace. If you have the courage to ‘call someone out’ on their actions, go for it. BTW: I believe a person’s actions/energy/words will come back to ‘bite them’ one day. Ouch!

    Peace!

    • Ollin says:

      Thank you for sharing your story with us, Amanda! Good luck to you, and I am glad you had the courage to be who you are, despite the lack of support. That was really brave of you.

  93. Rainamay says:

    Dearest Ollin:

    I have to say…I didn’t know you were gay…but I have never seen anyone in gender specificity, black or white, intimate relationship preference…or what-have-you…and I will tell you why. There are those who are LED and those who KNOW. The one’s who are led (and the ones who LEAD them are the ones to be forgiven…”for they know not what they do.” The ones who know are those who realize that the spirit and soul of EVERY individual created into human form is formless, sexless, raceless, moneyless…etc. WHO YOU ARE is not identified by ANY such appearance, and sorely, ignorance is really the culprit in any type of discriminatory belief and/or practice. This should not in any way make you paranoid, hurt you, or defame you. Though this is certainly something that should be attended to, my stance is that the only thing we have total control of is ourselves. Feeding into this ignorance only causes more strife. I have said “I would rather be part of a revelation than a revolution.” They have just as much “right” to their belief as anyone…though it doesn’t necessarily make it just. At the end of the day, they have their own reflection to stare at…and at some point, it is not going to be as pleasing to them as they may think. At the core, we are all the same…your writing comes from that core, that source, and is what is going to propel you to your destiny. Please don’t allow this bump in the road derail you. Beg to differ, respect her wishes, and just BE YOURSELF. We are not put here to please others in any way, shape, or form honey. You know who you are…let those who don’t worry about rubbing your dust out of their eyes. You are destined for greatness…she is destined for a little dark-pigmented Karma….Chin up!! You inspire me.

  94. [...] since I shared my story of discrimination with you all on Monday, I’ve had an overwhelmingly positive [...]

  95. Surabhi Naik says:

    Ollin,

    I really loved this post. Its very brave of you to have taken this entire incident in such a beautiful and positive manner. The idea of a non-discrimination policy is really good. Will have one for my blog soon.

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