Letter to the Editor;
(I sent the following letter to the town of Antigonish's local newspaper, The Casket. It was not printed. Could you please print it in your newspaper.)
Reconciling yourself with where you grew up, being able to exist there, means you can live any where. Or maybe you just come to an understanding of it.
This town has high rates of alcoholism, and you wouldn’t know it to look at it. It is a “good place to raise kids”, but many people are repressed. The paradox is that people are happy and people are sad. Mostly, what you see is what people think they should show you. The veneer, the gloss. All that human stuff pushed back. The darkness ignored and put into the category of diabolical. The guts, the passion, the truth, hidden from view. So much so that you don’t know what you don’t know. Because, here, that’s all there is, that’s what you grew up in, and that’s what you see. The code of silence.
What do you do if you’re gay? lesbian? bisexual? transgendered? queer? These are usually words (and hence PEOPLE) the town, in general, pretends do not exist. And if you are, more than likely you mostly sit in the closet and rot. You blend. Or you get beat up, beat down.
There are good people here. This town is full of them. You see them in church and you don’t see them in church. However, the one thing I would change about this town is that people not be so afraid. That they let their light shine out, their individuality. And not be so caught up with keeping up appearances.A person shouldn’t have to leave, move to Toronto or Vancouver or San Francisco, in order to feel accepted, in order to find “community”. Accept the spectrum of human existence.