Tonight I hosted the (ever so fancy) Stonewall Dorchester fundraiser. And the tickets cost loads* and it’s not a cheap gig – and I’m grateful, as ever, to my dear friend (and fine writer) Val McDermid for having me on her table – and because I was hosting, I spent the night in a state of ever so slightly nervous ‘is-this-ok-ness’? (Because I’m not a standup – at least not since 1991 – and those gigs always terrify me) …
And, mostly, because the work Stonewall does is huge, and it matters to me to do it justice, to be a good host, to encourage people to care and contribute to the cause.
From the marriage I WILL have, to the brilliant in-schools work**, to the heartbreaking and really vital work with Age Concern re LGBT elders …
Yes, for some people, Stonewall’s work is ‘mainstream’ and therefore not radical enough. For me, as an out lesbian for the past 30 years, I no longer need to accord with anyone else’s view of what ‘radical’ is. I already did it, in my day to day life, since I was 16 (or younger). I am gay and out and grew up working class (before it was fashionable with the politicos) and am ginge and freckled and I am a short, not-thin woman working in the arts who comes from a family where no-one had ever been to university, no-one had worked outside of a ‘proper job’ – and all that entails – before me. I have ALWAYS been radical.
And, tonight, radically, proud to host for Stonewall.
Lovely to be asked.
* in order to fundraise for ever such good stuff
** also, very good other in-schools work from Diversity Role Models for whom I am proud to be a patron
ps – I am, however, contrary to the one person’s belief on twitter, and the one woman in the ladies (why is it always in the loo??) NOT Carol Ann. Really, not.
One day – and I hope it’s one day soon – we won’t need to be radical about gay equality. Until then, huge thanks to those people who, thanks to having a high profile like Stella, are prepared to make a stand. It is seen and it does have an impact and it matters so much. But also thanks to non-famous folk who come out almost daily to someone new – radical in a small way perhaps but still such an important part of the larger push. When you can celebrate your marriage Stella we will all dance with with delight! Thank you for your work!
Oh yes, always thanks to those unseen who do so much. Said so while hosting …
I too am a short, ginger, freckled, lesbian – aint nothing more radical than that ;o)
Great post. How much I long for us to have true equality. In the US, that means Social Security benefits, not having our partners taxed for putting them on our health insurance…etc. When when when?
Your books are amazing. Thanks for so many wonderful stories and words.
I was wondering if you would be interested in doing a guest post on my blog – please check it out and if you’re interested,it would be an honor to have you write for it – http://www.outoftheshadowsofhistory,com
Don’t want to put a dampner on things and know how important stonewall is/has been and will continue to be in supporting and promoting gay rights etc, I am just very disappointed and amazed that they refused to do something when I wrote and complained to them about Mark Walcott’s disgusting homophobic 50 minute rant to the previous staff of Performing Arts at Newham College! I wrote to them some 5 weeks before the tape on you tube miraculously came to light. I took over from the staff who had secretly taped him, I was treated very badly as a woman, by him, telling me I was a mental case etc. As a collective department together with our boss and also our line manager, we resigned on ethical grounds…it was in the pub at Stratford where we discussed what had just happened, that I learned from my gay colleague, about the missing tape….absolutely horrified I spoke up for them, by sending this and other appropriate information about Mark Walcott, to stonewall, who told me it was not their concern. This from a company who awarded Newham College for being one of the top one hundred best work places for promoting a positive gay practice!
ah, thanks. you realise this is a really old post, so people are unlikely to see your comment?