The Black community continues to serve as a beacon of hope for all marginalized communities. Even when being subjected to ongoing and unwarranted violence and persecution, they continue to find the strength to pave the path to equality for all people. This is a heavy and unfair burden that we must all share together.
The LGBTQ+ community’s ability to live openly with Pride is the direct result of the revolutionary actions of Black trans people, such as Marsha P. Johnson and Miss Major Griffin-Gracy. The It Gets Better Project serves to share these powerful stories of the LGBTQ+ community, both past and present, for the purpose of uplifting, empowering, and connecting all LGBTQ+ youth around the globe.
Moments of Power is a collection of stories and resources intended to uplift Black LGBTQ+ youth and highlight the direct services available to them. It also includes information on how allies can be better informed and get involved in the fight for equality.
Listening to stories from leaders in the Black LGBTQ+ community, educating yourself and your community on revolutionary pieces of media, and supporting organizations that support the Black community are just a few of the ways we can all fight for the liberation of Black people. The It Gets Better Project will work tirelessly to ensure Black voices are heard, concretized, and celebrated for the power and light they bring to the human experience.
Black lives matter. Black lives matter. Black lives matter.
Black LGBTQ+ Voices
Stories have the power to educate, influence, and connect us to the experiences of others. Below are some of our most powerful stories from Black artists, activists, and leaders.
It Got Better Featuring Laverne Cox
Laverne Cox shares her life and experience as a trans woman. She explains what her childhood in Alabama was like as well as what it was like to be bullied by those who would police her gender.
“I remember the first time I just went full on femme, I just felt so liberated. It was liberating because I wasn’t fighting anymore. And I was like “This is who I am.”
“Good Trouble” Stars Zuri Adele and Sherry Cola on Representation
Zuri Adele and Sherry Cola from the Freeform show “Good Trouble” discuss the importance of showing diverse storylines on TV.
It Got Better Featuring Janet Mock
Janet Mock is thankful to have grown up in Hawaii and the cultural space called Mahu, a space beyond male and female.
“I think what I would tell a young person that’s struggling with difference or with their identity is to not listen to anyone but yourself, to be unapologetic in your own voice, in your own experiences of what’s authentic and real to you.”
MUA Kenneth Senegal & Blair Imani | Highlighting The Story
MUA/YouTuber/Entertainer Kenneth Senegal gives Author Blair Imani 60s makeover while discussing all things queer, Black history. During the makeover, Blair shares some of her favorite Black history facts and discusses the queer, Black folks she looks up to.
UK: AJ from RuPaul’s Brit Crew
Brasil: Yasmin Vitória
Resources for Black LGBTQ+ Youth
The It Gets Better Project maintains a curated list of Get Help resources for LGBTQ+ youth at ItGetsBetter.org/get-help.
Below is a list of direct services providers offering support specifically to the Black LGBTQ+ youth. https://itgetsbetter.org/blog/initiatives/organizations-serving-black-lgbtq-community/
Resources for Educators
The It Gets Better Project offers free-for-download materials as part of its education program It Gets Better EDU. Below is a selection of It Gets Better EduGuides designed to complement stories focused on the Black LGBTQ+ experience.
Moonlight – www.itgetsbetter.org/Moonlight
Moonlight is a 2016 coming-of-age film from A24, written and directed by Barry Jenkins based on Tarell Alvin McCraney’s unpublished semi-autobiographical play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue. It became the first film with an all-black cast and the first LGBTQ-related film to win the Oscar for Best Picture.
Check It – www.itgetsbetter.org/CheckIt
A group of bullied ninth graders in D.C. have finally had enough, and form the first LGBTQ+ gang called Check It that soon attracts over 200 members. But building a feared reputation is tough. When four key members are offered a way out of the violence, they set their eyes on something that unifies them instead: fashion.
Bayard & Me – www.itgetsbetter.org/BayardandMe
Walter Naegle looks back on his intimate relationship with the great American leader, Bayard Rustin, in a time when gay marriage was inconceivable. He reflects on the little known phenomena of intergenerational gay adoption and its connection to civil rights.
Finding Pride – www.itgetsbetter.org/FindingPride
Shortly after the first It Gets Better video was uploaded to YouTube, the campaign went viral. By now, over 70,000 videos have been shared. Finding Pride takes a look at 33 of these compelling stories divided into six themes or lesson plans. Lesson 3 specifically features stories at the intersections of pride and race.
Resources for Allies
It is everyone’s individual responsibility to remain informed about the world around them. Grounding yourself in the facts is a vital first step to establishing how you plan to get involved.
Out has published an in-depth report on the 2020 Black Lives Matter Protests. They have also compiled a list of five ways to support the 2020 protestors, an incredibly helpful resource for people who are looking to get involved.
Advocate has reported on the many peaceful demonstrations that have happened all over the country.
The Trevor Project has published an incredible guide on how to support Black LGBTQ+ youth.