Come one, come all

Come one, come all

Friday is National Coming Out Day. This is typically a homosexual celebration, though it is in no way limited to that small, albeit important group. It can be translated into a massive conglomeration of all of the coming out days that we North Americans celebrate, such as Valentine’s Day.

Did you miss Valentine’s Day this year? Do you want to celebrate it again? Or maybe there’s someone new in your life and you want to celebrate it with him or her early. Friday is the day to do it. Come out as a couple, come out as in love and just come out. It’s a fun holiday, whether you’re “involved” or not. I mean, hey, an excuse for chocolate. You can’t really beat that.

How about Easter? Many Christians will get up before the crack of dawn so that they can be to their places of worship and rejoice in the resurrection of their lord. They sing hymns together, whether they can sing or not. They read scripture and pray. But truly, anyone willing to get up that early has to be pretty comfortable in his or her identity. Every Easter Sunday you can witness the coming out of Christians everywhere.

Don’t forget about Independence Day. Every Fourth of July flags come out, fireworks are unleashed and multi-colored floats trundle down the streets. United States Citizens come out of their homes and their jobs and proclaim their nationalism. They come out and support their country. Patriotic movies hit the big screens. Red, white and blue become the colors of choice and fashion. On every block there’s a family having a barbeque and kids racing around with sparklers. It has become a huge national holiday where citizens all over come out in support of their country.

So why, with all these great coming out days, do we require another one? Because gays, lesbians, transgenders, bisexuals and everyone in between need a day to celebrate on their own, not over shadowed and drowned out by the rest of the crowd. This isn’t a “special right.” How can it be, when it’s only another coming out day and, as we’ve already proved, there are those aplenty? This is a time for silent voices to be heard and faces to shine. And if none of this convinces you, if you’re still unsure and doubtful, then look around our very own campus and see how few truly out students we have. This is a day for them, your friends, roommates and neighbors. It’s a gift.

Now you, yeah, you! The reader. Come out Friday. Celebrate with the rest of us. It doesn’t matter who or what you are. Every day, in some fashion, you are undoubtedly coming out as something, even if it’s just something as simple as a student. Coming Out Day is just a day to commemorate it.

As for my own personal coming out story? Yeah, I think it’s about time we step outside of the closet. Ladies and gentleman, classmates and peers, I, Jinya Elsner, am coming out. I am a Minnesotan.