Don't get me wrong, I am pleased to hear this apology finally happen for lesbian and gay people. It is the throwing open of a door that makes me weep with relief and sorrow. It's time to out the hating.
I am thinking of all the friends I watched die as the AIDS epidemic destroyed my community while people stood by blaming those who were sick and doing nothing but finger point and blame. Thinking of all the beatings, deaths, and torture we have experienced. Thinking of the love I lost, the family I lost in the United States because I couldn't stay there, couldn't marry there - the loss and the impact that lasted for years of sadness and pain.
These wrongs have taken so much, so much from me and my sweet brother (RIP Chris Cornwall) who was forced into the torture called "aversion therapy." The cost is immeasurable and cannot be repaid; however, restitution would help folks like me and so many others to not live out our senior years in the poverty caused by those who held power over us and held us down.
Please listen to this entire speech and use it as a springboard for learning. We have been assaulted and shamed throughout our lives ...repeatedly. This speech by Prime Minister Trudeau is a start. The apology is a start.
From one who stayed despite the shame, abuse and suffering. I am still here. I am still here. My tears fall as I listen. To have spoken out for so long and to finally hear this, it's a point to rest for a moment on the path to healing.
-Gillian Cornwall, c. November 30, 2017