I don’t know exactly what I said because I decided to work from an outline. I was asked to speak by Equality Utah in favor of H.B. 89 which would add “sexual orientation and gender identity” to the state’s anti-discrimination law. I began with a simple statement: “I am speaking today because ending discrimination is not only a political issue, but a moral one. Discrimination is morally wrong and against the values of Utahns, no matter their religious or spiritual background.”
I then talked a bit about being an openly transgender man and minister and how lucky I am to have found a congregation that is willing to trust me as a person and a minister. Not everone is as lucky as me and many people don’t feel that they can be honest about who they are without risking their job and their ability to provide for themselves and their families. Then I said, “Justice should not rely on luck. It should be a matter of legislation. Utah has an opportunity to be a moral leader in our nation by making it clear that discrimination of ALL kinds is illegal in our state.”
I ended by urging everyone to work for the bill by talking to friends, neighbors, and legislators and reminding them that they can make a difference.
All in all, I think it went well. I was satisfied with the job I did, especially since I did the whole thing without visible notes or a script. There were a few reporters and photographers there but no other media, which was disappointing. Still, it was a good event and I’m glad I participated.
UPDATE: Here is one sadly tiny article about the rally. Here is the text (pdf) of Rep. Chris Johnson’s remarks and a link to her video updating the status of the bill. And I was wrong. Someone saw me on TV last night…I’ll link here if I find the piece.