I often think back to the lunch hour Lisa, Karl and I spent in Merrion Square with Senator David Norris discussing the LGBT rights movement. That the Senator was so forthcoming about his personal experiences coming out of the closet was definitely a highlight of our shoot.
Whatever walk of life we come from, politicians or otherwise, we are each faced with the choice of living and speaking our personal truths or living and speaking what is more likely to appease others.
Mr. Norris had yet to officially announce his candidacy for president of Ireland at the time, but the option was certainly on the table. The Senator could have chosen to play a potential candidate during our session, but he instead played himself and proudly bared his humanity.
In doing so, he set an example for people not necessarily even old enough to vote that the greater risk comes from being dishonest and one day having to face the consequences. Speaking candidly about his sexuality may cost Senator Norris some votes but what is more important – lives or votes?
History will show that the people Senator Norris inspires to follow in his footsteps will have a more positive impact on the world than any person he might have tried to appease by keeping his truth quiet.
Thank you to An Lár TV for broadcasting our segment with Senator Norris and for turning up the volume of the conversation about the global nature of the equal rights movement.