“The fight for LGBTQ rights” always sounds grand, and—as grand, sweeping phrases often do—its bravura obscures the grittier, more complex reality. The core of any civil rights movement is brave individuals first realizing, then questioning whatever prejudice has been visited upon them, then rousing themselves to do something about it. Those are very personal and piercing decisions to take.
Then those people may reach out for help, advice, and support; they may ally themselves with others. A case is formed. How far such a case goes depends on luck and a lot of hard, often thankless work by activists, lawyers, and campaigners from organizations like the ACLU, Lambda Legal, the Transgender Law Center, HRC, the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and GLAAD. Support may come from smaller organizations, and local chapters of organizations; from volunteers working and canvassing.
This mostly invisible toil is important to underscore. The population-at-large may only see the results of this work on TV in news bulletins at the end of months and years of work they do not know about. The ticker-tape parades, swelling orchestral music, cheers, applause, and slow-motion rainbow flags flapping in the wind occur as a culmination—and not frequently enough. Do not let colorful Pride parades, and all those LGBTQ characters on TV, lull you: in reality, LGBTQ people, and their rights, are under attack. LGBTQ people need your active support, now urgently.