We all need, even crave, a way to make sense of our lives
and to bring unity to our daily existence. It is the Quaker
principles of equality, honesty, and reasonable living, and the
fundamental belief that the Light of God is in every human being
that sustain me whether I am tracing my own footsteps or moving
These principles helped push me beyond my initial fears of
coming out as a lesbian, of choosing to be out and true to myself
and others. They ground the struggle against condemnation and
misperception. In the words of African-American lesbian poet
Audre Lorde, ôWhen I dare to be powerfulùto use my strength in
the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important
whether I am afraid.
CAROL H. GAUNTLETT, 27, is a free-lance writer living in
Washington, D.C. She attends Friends Meeting of Washington and
her influences include Minnie Bruce Pratt and Cornel West.
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