Rebirth of Sharky Hitchens
Yesterday, I attended our local library board meeting to speak out against hate and speak up for our local library for growing up and being brave in a community so full of hate and ignorance.
I also did it because I feel like I failed other groups (BLM) over the past year. Our little town had a BLM march and I didn’t go to it- I really wanted to- but it was in the middle of Covid and I’ve regretted it ever since- I fell like I let folks down.
I wasn’t saying that my life was more important than anyone elses…but I was saying the life/health of my wife and son were and will always be; I didn’t feel it was a safe time to be in large groups so I stayed home and watched live feeds and posted my support as much as I could.
It’s a different situation now- my wife and I are fully vaccinated and my son has had his 2nd shot so I felt it was time to wake up Sharky again…it was time to get out and be heard and support what I truly believe in.
Our little local library had it’s first Pride display and a local preacher wanted to cause some issues- so what better time to get to work?
I created an event and invited everyone I could to go to the board meeting and be heard- I messaged people, I called people…I called the local news, I got mini pride flags and stickers ready but I had no plans to talk.
The day of the event- that changed- because I heard that several members of a hate group would be there to voice their opinions so I took a few notes.
Those notes turned into a quick 2 page speech that would take about 2-3 minutes. I spent the day rehearsing what I wanted to say and making sure I had it nailed.
The meeting came and I handed out over 50 mini pride flags and about 60 rainbow heart stickers- there were clearly more there to support our library than the hate group had and you could tell that by the flags, shirts and speakers.
I was number 13 to speak and, by the time it got to me, I was so mad I was literally shaking, sweating and felt light headed. I walked up, blacked out and spoke…I’m not 100% sure what I said but I know it wasn’t what I had written- not even close. After I finished I stayed and listened to members of the LGBTQIA+ community talk about how they have been treated by the people in this little community and it was devastating…then I had to listen to the members of the hate group compare love to bestiality and try to turn the meeting into a church service.
I give credit to the board president for not allowing that to happen…she took control of the situation and handled it amazingly.
I will include the actual speech I had planned as I’ll be emailing it to the library director and board members to be sure my thoughts are actually heard since I failed to get them out in person.
As we walked out of the meeting- members of the hate group were there, with signs, yelling at us and telling gay kids that they weren’t Christians and trying to get a reaction…so I did what love told me to do- I offered him a mini rainbow flag.
Sadly he refused.
Then I explained to him that his book is full of murder, violence, incest and supports slavery and his response was “what’s wrong with slavery?”
That was his honest response…my left hand tightened around the flags I had left as I stood there in my tracks- stopped by pure ignorance. A buddy was there, a black guy, and he gladly said “I think I’ll take this one” and I stepped back- noticed the cop and forced myself to leave the situation. This is the exact reason why I ended my thoughts of running for the school board. I have a very hard time dealing with hate and ignorance- my first thought is to knock the shit out of someone and I had to walk away out of respect for the library and the folks that were there to spread love.
I will stand here and tell you that Sharky Hitchens is back…I plan to go out and be seen and heard (hopefully much better) in the future for all the things I believe and to fight the hate and ignorance that fills this town.
Above all of that though…I plan to write. I’ve always said that I have a face for the radio but a voice to be a blogger….blogger…what a Gen X thing to say.
Anyways…I may not be pretty and I may speak like a nervous 7 year old but I think I’m decent at writing and I love doing it and now I’ve found my purpose to start back up.
I’m as safe from Covid as I can be so it’s time to get out there and fight.
And with that…here is my speech that would have surely won me several awards. 😉
I moved to this town 18 years ago and quickly learned that it’s a diverse community and many of the residents here hate that fact. I also learned, as an outspoken atheist and liberal that many hated the fact that I was here and I was shown that by having a letter to the editor published in The Slanderson News stating that I wasn’t welcome, I didn’t belong and it was great that I would burn in hell. The letter was so bad that my wife’s boss told her to apologize to me on her behalf.
The library is the only shining light in this town- the library is this towns only hope. I would like to thank the library for being there for me for the last 18 years- to provide me reading material on atheism without judging me or making me feel unwelcome.
It is this boards job to make sure the library remains that shining light and doesn’t allow the darkness of hate and ignorance to snuff it out.
The hate group here tonight doesn’t like seeing the Pride display- as an atheist, I don’t like seeing the Easter display or the Christmas programs but I’m adult enough to realize those aren’t for me- they are for other members of this community- which is why you’ve never received a complaint from me.
The hate group here tonight has or will talk about how they feel kids should not be allowed to see this display due to the type of books on the table- these aren’t books for kids due to their content…yet they will be carrying and promoting a book full of violence, hate, murder, rape, incest and that is pro-slavery and anti-women and they are 100% on board for kids reading that.
Kids should not be allowed to read about two people of the same sex being in love but should be able to read “she remembered her lover with the penis like a donkey and a flood of semen like a horse.” It’s in their books…Ezekiel 23:20.
That makes total sense…right?
I will close with this, if this board bows to this hate group and removes a display simply because they disagree with the content…simply because it goes against their beliefs- how long before I’m not allowed to use the library my taxes pay for? You see, one of their 7 deadly sins is gluttony and, as you can see, I’m full of gluttony- and Oreos- and that is against the one book they read…so when will you start removing books with fat main characters?
They are coming for a group of people this time and while I don’t belong to that group, I must speak up because I belong to several groups on their hit list and, while they have already come for me before…they will surely come for me again.
Love, Peace and Sharkyness