Diversity Guides

Brian McNaught's Gay & Transgender Issues in the Workplace Blog

Archive for September, 2008

Can You Hear Me Now?

Saturday, September 27th, 2008

As anyone who knows me or has read my book Are You Guys Brothers? knows, when Ray and I met back in 1976 I didn’t have a credit card. I was 28 years old and I figured that if I didn’t have the cash, I shouldn’t buy it. Ray, though fiscally conservative, told me that to establish credit, I needed to have a credit card, so, by the end of the year, I had thirty.

If a sales clerk asked me if I wanted to open an account with their store, I said "Sure. Why not?" My wallet couldn’t hold them all.

Seeing the enormous bulge in my back pocket, Ray pulled out the scissors and cut up every credit card except for the Visa and American Express. "That’s all you need," he insisted. Suddenly, when I walked, I no longer tilted to the right!

Today, my computer is bulging with Internet connections. Read more…

Living Without Armor

Saturday, September 20th, 2008

After spending four days in Austin with 2,200 gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people and our allies, being inspired by the personal stories of people such as former gay ambassador Michael Guest, laughing uproariously with Carson Kressley and Kate Clinton, and having a late dinner with Judy Shepard, my friend Bob Witeck, and wonderful gay executives from Wal-Mart and Disney, I packed my bags and headed to Atlanta for a meeting of former Surgeon General David Satcher’s advisory council on matters of national sexual health. It was there that I experienced feelings of depression, due in some part to the loss of my financial security with the collapse of Lehman Brothers, but more so, I think, by my need to put on armor in the presence of some heterosexual people with whom I don’t feel understood and therefore emotionally safe. Read more…

Our Relay Marathon

Saturday, September 6th, 2008

The Summer Olympics in Beijing were so spectacular in pageantry and thrilling in the competition for athletic perfection, that one could watch them and feel very small and insignificant as a result. I flirted with those feelings as I did while watching the recent Democratic convention where I was constantly reminded of the historic battles that have been waged by others in my behalf.

And yet, as I sit in the airport waiting for my flight from Boston to Toronto, preparing for my presentations on gay and transgender issues to banking executives, and as I think about the anticipated 3,000 global participants at next week’s Out and Equal conference in Austin, I feel a little less small and a tiny bit less insignificant. Read more…