This is for Susan.

“leave the giraffe alone….the giraffe has nothing to do with your LGBTQ+ community. leave all animals out of your agenda….they don’t deserve your treatment.”

A Facebook comment received on a story covering efforts in the town of Orono to celebrate Pride month that serves as a stark reminder that while we have made great strides in the push for equality, there are still many who can’t see us for the perfectly diverse, beautifully queer people we are.

So we decided to do something about it.

You can have your giraffe back when calls for equal treatment and civil rights are no longer met with comments like yours.

You can have your giraffe back when black trans women are no longer murdered and their killers are brought to justice.

You can have your giraffe back when police stop beating and killing black folks in the streets, in broad daylight, and on camera, then claiming discrimination when we demand they face justice for it.

You can have your giraffe back when I stop hearing about CHILDREN who have died by suicide because their peers and the adults in their lives refused to see and support the amazing, queer people they were growing to be.

You can have your giraffe back when I can stop depending on 9 people in black robes to protect my right to exist, to work, to love, and to seek competent healthcare while old white men seek to remove every legal safeguard that those who came before us spent their lives fighting for.

Until then, we’re keeping the giraffe, Susan.

All proceeds from sales of this design will be split between MaineTransNet and a fund which will be dedicated to supporting future events and programs centering social justice and diversity education in the town of Orono.

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