This week's question is "How to deal with an anti-gay landlord?" Read my official answer here.
I want to share a personal story that I did not include in the article. When I was at UC Berkeley, I had an apartment that had floor to ceiling windows that faced out to Frat Row. My younger sister came to visit me one weekend from high school. She was a dancer & came to help me choreograph a show I was doing for National Coming Out Day. I was in drag rehearsing my routine in front of my sister when all of a sudden she screamed & pointed out the window. As I whipped around, I heard the entire wall of glass shatter and all I saw were shards of glass cascading all around us. We fled into another room & called the police. We huddled in a corner til they arrived.
Clearly it was a hate crime. (not to mention vandalism and assault!) I was in full drag on Frat Row, and some 'phobes were trying to cut me...literally! The policeman was not sympathetic whatsoever. "It was just a prank..there's nothing we can really do...blah blah" I felt ignored, ashamed, violated, unsafe (not to mention guilty for putting my little sister in danger & exposing her to the cruelty of the world outside her suburban cocoon). The only person who showed me any empathy was my landlord, who was very understanding and comforting. He said this was not my fault & that he respected me for being out and proud. That meant the world to an 18 yr old Herman. For every anti-gay landlord you encounter, there is a gay friendly landlord! There ARE people out there who care.