Christopher, I appreciate your post and especially where you mention that “educators must recognize that the ultimate goal is far more complex and has inclusive implications for all students, not just LGBTQ+ youth.” This is a framework that I try my best to come from in all my workshops and trainings. Examining the impact of binary perspectives of gender and orientation benefits all youth, not just queer youth. We know that cisgender and heterosexual young men are chased by rigid notions of masculinity (within the binary) such as “boys don’t cry”, or taunted by anti-gay slurs for doing anything that gets associated with femininity. And cisgender and heterosexual girls are impacted by extreme binary notions of femininity with an immense focus on their appearance- leading to 80% of 10-year-old girls on diets (Robinson, 2015), being steered away from sports, and STEM. A shift away from either-or thinking, from binary thinking about gender, expression, and identity is not only critical for queer youth but for all youth. Consider the reaction to queer identities and experiences are rooted in expectations of gender that are rooted in binary frameworks about who we get to be in the world.

Furthermore, and this is not as clear as I’d like it to be language but I think that by creating an LGBTQ+ anything while certainly empowering, needed, and vital at the same time it continues to other people. My questions are, what would it look like to have queer-inclusive pedagogy be just that- inclusive pedagogy (all-encompassing)? What would it look like to not be an add-on to curriculum, and policies, but naturally be a part of the language, conversation, and efforts? Patrice palmer a Black nonbinary DEI leader, and TED x speaker said it best, “It’s one thing to say all are welcome, it’s another to say I had you in mind”. (link to their amazing and powerful TEDx talk here

What does it look like to come from- I had you in mind, on topics of gender and orientation identities, as well as intersecting marginalized identities such as, ability, race, and class?