At the Netroots Nation LGBT pre-convening on Wednesday we talked a bit about organizing in red and purple states. As someone who’s only lived on the coasts, I know I’m often guilty of forgetting about the south and middle of the country. And there’s certainly a stereotype that all the queers are on the coasts anyway. But take a look at this map from the Williams Institute (via the Family Equality Council‘s site) that shows the top states in terms of same-sex couples raising children:
I know that’s not the data I was expecting. The fact is, queer folks are parenting in states that are often ignored by LGBT organizing. This isn’t to downplay some of the great work that is happening in those states, but the national focus (and the national money) tends to be in places like California and New York. Clearly, we need to be telling the real story about same-sex parenting in the US. We need to uplift the voices and issues of the families in states that are often ignored, and we need to support their work. I imagine parents face some different issues in South Dakota than in San Francisco, but the best way to know what these parents actually need is for them to tell their stories at the national level.