Friday morning came and went. I was resigned and ready to take a nap.
My phone rang.
“I thought best to call you now and let you know…
“After careful deliberation… “I just want you to know that…
“If you want the job, it’s yours”
I could not contain my joy.
“Thank you, thank you your Honour!”
Oh man. What a good feeling.
I am gay and I am Asian. He had sense and he chose me.
Was I supposed to be proud of that fact? There’s no doubt I should be proud. I should be proud of my achievements. I should be proud that he saw talent in me. I should be proud of my enthusiasm. But should I be proud of having overcome some deficiency or defect inside me? That I thought these characteristics were some defect reveals something about our society. There is a stigma attached to difference. You begin to recognise the power structures in society and you begin to accept, subconsciously, that some part of you exists to your detriment.
No matter how good you are you are still different. Different and lesser.
It is hard to hear these thoughts being spoken of so plainly. If I read someone else’s self doubt my stomach would wrench in empathy.
But this is a good story. We should not turn this story about success into a reason to grieve. Quite the opposite. This story vindicates all the progress society has made. As our straight allies cast away their prejudices we cast away our own self doubt. Thereby we can march together step by step into a society that accepts diversity and difference as virtues. Today I have reason to celebrate. Tomorrow I hope another young queer person has reason to celebrate too.
By Nathan Li