Our mission is to instill pride, celebrate unity, and embrace diversity and inclusiveness in our LGBTQ* community and allies, and to provide a support network and educational advocacy group dedicated to increasing awareness and acceptance.
Why the Asterisk?
Early in the founding of Fayetteville PRIDE, we needed to define ourselves and our community for our official paperwork. This led to a dilemma on the appropriate acronym to represent our community. Writing LGBT or LGBTQ felt like we were excluding part of the community, and went against our stated goal to be inclusive. Yet, it was impractical to write the currently recommended 12 letter LGBTQQIP2SAA. And what if we add to or change the acronym again in the future? Is someone always going to feel excluded?
It was suggested that we could use an asterisk in our mission statement and official documents, with an added footnote acknowledging the missing letters and welcoming everyone. This seemed like a way to move forward, and the focus shifted to the wording of our statement. But through this process, the definition of the asterisk symbol itself stood out.
The asterisk is used “to represent that which has been omitted or left out,” and it acknowledges that omission and makes it visible. It struck us that the asterisk not only symbolized our acronyms’ missing letters, but also characterized our community. We are too often left out of the cultural and political conversations about sexual preference and gender identities. We have too long been omitted from legal protections and equal rights.
The asterisk represents us all. Let people see the asterisk and have the courage to ask what it means.
We will be seen.
We will be represented.
We will be *.
Fayetteville PRIDE is a non-profit organization as described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.