I came out on my blog publicly on my blog May 19, 2008. I wish I never came out.
This past weekend was the yearly Pride celebration around most parts of the world. It’s a time where the LGBT community is supposed to come together to celebrate; celebrate our fellow members, the rights we’ve won, the bonds we share, and love. This is a sham! No one in the LGBT community has love in their hearts, but rather are fueled by hatred and live to tear the community apart.
Before I came out I would meet fellow LGBT members by driving 100 miles each way from Tampa Bay over to Orlando, Florida on the weekends. I thought that I was safe there and around people who shared my thoughts and values. Little did I know that it seemed greener on the other side, but that’s the sales technique they use to draw you in so that they can chew you up and spit you out.
I can’t even begin to write out every single horrific thing that members of the LGBT community have done to me since I decided to live my life out and in public. Coming out was the worse decision I have ever made. I’ve had death threats, been physically assaulted, spit on, mocked, laughed at, been lied, been the target of an organization whose sole purpose was to get me out of Seattle, had my family’s private information (address, names, phone numbers) published, been stalked, almost filed a few different restraining orders, and physically been manhandled by mobs of my fellow LGBT members and thrown out onto the street. I don’t want to be a part of a community with so much hatred. There is no love. It doesn’t get better. The LGBT community is filled and fueled by hatred.
I came out while living in San Francisco, CA. I remember that not too terribly long into living there and making what I thought were friends, I let a friend in on what was one of the biggest things to ever happen to me. I let him in and told him because I felt I could trust him and that he had gone thru the same experience. I told him in the strictest of confidences only to find out the next day that everyone I knew had been told by him and people would use that against me for the rest of my life.
When I moved to Seattle from San Francisco, I was told by several people that there were Craigslist posts warning the residents about me. When I came here, I was instantly greeted by others who had been told by their friends half truths and flat out lies about me and my past. Within the first week being here there was already people messaging every single person I befriended or tagged on Facebook attempting to warn them against being my friend. Almost a year after living here, Brian moved to Seattle and people were still messaging the new people in my life about me. They warned Brian and thank God he was one of the only people who decided to make up his own mind and get to know the real me. We got married last month and he’s made me happier than I ever expected I could be.
This past weekend was the yearly Pride celebration. When I moved to SF I didn’t even know what it was or anything about it, but I wanted to be a part of it. I thought I wanted to be a part of this community, so I started to try to fit in. I began by dropping weight. A little over 40 pounds between January and June 2008. I did have what I thought at the time was a good time, but a year later was stricken with depression so bad that I ended up in the hospital the day before Pride 2009. It was members of my community who drove me to feel so badly about myself. The worst part of it all is that nearly every single time someone has formed an opinion of me is because of something I’ve said on social media.
Last time I went to R Place, a gay club in Seattle, was June 22, 2012 to see Latrice Royale, Jujubee, and Jessica Wild, 3 drag queens who had appeared on RuPaul’s Drag Race. We bought VIP tickets, sat and had a great time. Gave some money to the drag queens as they paraded up and down the isle. Minded our business and had a great time. Never have I had an issue there, caused a scene, been out of line, or violated any rule or law therein. The next time Brian and I went we were told we weren’t allowed. No reason was given. We came back 2 years later assuming that time had passed and there was no reason that we had given in the past at the venue to not be allowed in. We went in and within moments were rushed by security and thrown out. Came back the next day to speak with the owner and he told us that he had no reason as to not allow us in, he just didn’t want us at his establishment. Love is love. LGBT inclusive. No hate allowed the sign says at R Place, yet for no reason we aren’t allowed to celebrate with our LGBT brothers and sisters.
Neighbours Nightclub in Seattle, another LGBT club was one of the places that I would frequent nearly nightly when I first moved to Seattle. Unfortunately one of the people who worked there, Chris Beisenherz, started what he called Project GNOOS aka Project Get Nick Out Of Seattle. I went to go to Neighbours for a friend’s wedding reception which was being hosted there and turned away at the door, to this private event I was invited to, by the general manager who refused to give me any reason as to why, only that it was his right as a private business. There had not been an incident involving myself which would ever justify this.
The past few weeks I made a joke online, it didn’t go over well. It was a joke that was the entire purpose of it. Not malice, not hate, just to make people laugh. Some people did and messaged me that they were able to see thru and find the humor. A lot more didn’t.
It was 108 characters. This past week because of those 108 characters, I wasn’t allowed at @Purr Cocktail Lounge. A bar where on my first day moving to Seattle I sat with friends (from SF) and watched President Obama announce they had killed Bin Laden. A bar where I had been to and spent upwards of $4k a year at at one point. A bar where Brian and I signed our marriage certificate on our wedding night. A bar where I was supposed to be part of the community members the bar was meant to be there and serve. All because some people can’t take a joke.
Shortly after I move to Seattle I met Michael Sean John Jouver and his drag persona DonnaTelle Howe. We saw each other a few times and I spent the night a few times at his place. Nothing further came of it, but ever since then he’s come out against me both online and in person. This past weekend we, Brian and I, went to a Pride event. We were quiet and sat by ourselves keeping quite and peaceful. Brian went up to get us a drink and the manager came over and asked us to leave. DonnaTelle began inciting the crowd shouting about not wanting me there, shouting lies and misinformation about me. She riled the crowd up so much so that they literally backed me into a corner and began assaulting me. Stealing my phone, and eventually picking me up and throwing me out onto the street.
This is my community right? The one I so loudly and at the time proudly came out and stated I was a part of. The same community which has now left me lying on the street and moments ago were about to punch the life out of me. Why would anyone want to be part of this sort of mob?
The manager said that, “Wherever you go, Nick, that an incident happens and I don’t want one here.” There was no incident which I would had caused. I was there for an event and to enjoy myself with my husband. We were quiet and didn’t cause a scene. The manager and DonnaTelle are the ones who riled the crowd up, who most didn’t know anything about me. They were the ones who caused a mob scene and forced me into a corner, literally, where I was about to be beaten to a pulp. Don’t blame me for the incident which you started. I was there for a good time and to quietly enjoy the night.
I noticed as well as others that the local LGBT bars don’t march in the parades. They charge huge cover charges all weekend long for the same service they provide year round, but they don’t participate in any of the Pride day official events themselves. In a world post Pulse Orlando, LGBT nightclub, incident you would think that other clubs and bars would be out with a visible message that they stand with us and celebrate LGBT Pride. Nope, they are busy counting how much extra money they made in the past 72 hours. These venues are not what we should want as part of our LGBT community. They exclude the members of the community on a whim and don’t ever give reasons why. How can you exclude the people who WANT to spend money at your venue and have never done a single thing to justify non-admittance?
I remember a time in San Francisco where there was a video screen where you could tweet messages that would show up on the screen. People began tweeting hateful, hurtful, things about me. The things were available on the company’s website as well. Fortunately I was able to get them removed by messaging the management, but the damage was done and I ran out and home. My night was ruined and the damage was done.
I’ve been bombard with people saying how they want to curb stomp me, deck me, hit me, punch me in the glasses, and even kill me for YEARS. Every single one of these messages has come with within the LGBT community which I am supposed to call my family.