LGBTQ Support, Politics

How to be an ally?

I have never hidden my views on gay marriage. I am in support of it strong and proud. I keep up with the legal actions (and non-actions) surrounding the fight for the right to marry at Then today? I saw at This is Not Over that someone is selling Rainbow Bracelets to raise money for the cause. They are just like the Livestrong bracelets (which I wear) but they are rainbow colored (of course).

So, this is my question to all my Gay and Lesbian readers. Can I wear one of those?

Can I take a stand simply because I believe in it? Even though I enjoy the luxury of a marriage unquestioned by the government? Is it enough that I want LilZoot and any future children to grow up knowing that marriage is for two people who love each other – regardless of gender?

If you don’t want to leave a comment, feel free to email me at I’d like to purchase one of these, but I dont want it to appear that I’m standing for a cause of which I have no connection. And if you DO feel I shouldn’t wear it – they how can I show my support? I live in a conservative state and I feel like I NEED to show my support SOMEHOW, just so that no one assumes otherwise.

Thanks All!

13 thoughts on “How to be an ally?”

  1. Of course you can wear it. I choose to view these things as part of a larger fight for human rights, of which we are all part.

  2. Of course you can wear it. I choose to view these things as part of a larger fight for human rights, of which we are all part.

  3. As a lesbian, (and long time reader first time commenter – hee!) I have to say no. Your support of the cause is much appreciated and there are so many other ways to show your support – but the rainbow colors are specifically meant for “gay pride” – as in I am so proud to be gay. Straight people wearing rainbow attire just isn’t done. How about visiting,, or or better yet, write your local congressman or woman? You are too cool – we need more people like you on our side. Thanks!

  4. Heck yes you can wear one. 🙂 I think the fight for marriage rights needs straight allies. I’ve always seen the rainbow as symbolic of “gay pride” and “gay friendly.” However, if we were ever in the place at the same time and it meant that the cute women were hitting on you instead of hitting on me then I might make you take it off. 😉

  5. I’m not gay, so I probably don’t count in terms of an answer to your question – but in my local gaybourhood (Vancouver, BC) businesses fly the pride flag as a show of their support – whether the proprietors are gay or not. There are even city-sponsored rainbow flags lining the streets, and the local transit authority has painted the neighbourhood’s bus stops pink. Everyone flys the flag as a show of support and acceptance. Period.

    I think wearing the bracelet as a sign of support for the cause is A-Ok. You’re not wearing other pride gear, and the bracelet was designed to give a specific message of support, not necessarily self-gay-pride.

    Are only cancer-survivors supposed to wear LiveStrong bracelets? As for the rest of the rainbow issue, if it’s indeed for “gay pride only,” then the pride people have a whole lot of daycares to start re-painting!

  6. Zoot, I have no idea if you can wear one or not, but I agree with Jennifer that wearing rainbow items typically seems to signify that you are homo- or bisexual. But like Jen, I also live in Vancouver, where even the nation’s largest, most secure and conservative-seeming bank pastes rainbow-stickers on the doors of their gay-area branches as a “yes you are welcome and yes we acknowledge you” kind of way. I think there’s a difference between a sticker on the door of a proprieter and wearing the paraphanaleia oneself.

    Surely there’s a bumper sticker or other way you an show your support. Is there a “Straight Persons for Gay Rights” group? Perhaps there should be.

  7. As a card-carrying lesbian (currently in a 7 year relationship), I say, “BUY THAT BRACELET, GIRL!” I think it’s great that you want to support gay rights. If nothing else, someone may ask why you’re wearing it or what it means, giving you a chance to share your pro-gay marrige point of view. I agree that the bracelet is intended as a show of support, not a declaration of your sexuality. I have cancer, but don’t think twice when others wear the Live Strong bracelets. What if only women fought for a woman’s right to vote? What if it was only Blacks marching for civil rights? When AIDS was becoming an epidemic and knowledge was scarce, it was the wearing of the AIDS ribbon by people from all walks of life that got people talking… thinking… changing. So I think it’s fabulous! Now aren’t you sorry you asked?

  8. Delurking to comment. I’m a lesbian in a long-term relationship who would love to be able to marry my girl. Now, with those credentials out there, I completely agree with Charlotte. Buy that bracelet! It’s great to give money to causes you believe in, but another important aspect of support is visibility. GLBT people are everywhere and so are their supporters. The burden of ending any kind of discrimination cannot lie in the people who are subjugated. You may not have the same hardships of someone who is a lesbian, but to stand with me in solidarity is very moving and an important step in opening people’s minds.

  9. Not to drag this thing out…but I stand by that if you want to show support for the cause…go to and order one of the t-shirts. Gay pride flags outside a business can indicate gay establishment OR gay friendly establishment…but to me a person wearing rainbow indicates he or she is homosexual. If I saw Zoot wearing a gay pride bracelet I wouldn’t think she was wearing it in support of same sex marriage…I would think she was an adorable lesbian! I agree with everyone that visibility and solidarity are FAR more important issues than the meaning behind rainbow colors. And maybe the distinction is so slight that it is minor…I am just sharing thoughts with ya’ll. Anyway it got us all talking and that’s the cool thing!

  10. A local GLBT group was recently selling purple bracelets that said equality… maybe something like that would be better? I want one myself. Either way it’s your choice.

  11. This is interesting and I’ve been puzzling over it a bit.

    On the one hand, you don’t have to “be” anything to support a cause. You don’t have to have a heart attack to support heart research, or have breast cancer to support that research. My son wears a “prevent child abuse” wristband and as near as I can tell he has not been abused (although he thinks withholding PS2 time until after homework is finished is a form of abuse).

    On the other hand, I think there are traditions in the gay / lesbian community that can not be easily dismissed, especially related to wearing of certain colors or items. I guess it probably depends on who you talk to since there is probably a lot of variation there, as well.

    So, um, I’m no help at all. Good luck with it. You would make a very cute lesbian, though.

    I’m just saying…

  12. I’m in a lesbian relationship and I say yeah why not? I’ll take all the support we can get!

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