Last week I put out a call for help in finding author Rashid Darden and the call was answered. Thank you guys so much! Not only did I connect with Rashid but he was kind enough to send me an advanced copy of his soon-to-be released novel "Covenant" which I read in less than 48 hours. What an amazing read!
Covenant is Rashid's second book and is a continuation of the story from his debut novel "Lazarus". For those of you who have not read either book allow me to bring you up to speed.
Both books are set on the campus of Potomac University in Washington, D.C. and tell the story of Adrian Collins, an intelligent and highly respected college student who is coming to terms with his sexuality while pledging a traditional black fraternity, Beta Chi Phi. Amidst conservative and homophobic surroundings, Adrian is determined to be himself, experience love, and become a respected member of his fraternity.
The pledging process is not a cakewalk for Adrian as some of his brothers suspect that he might be gay. Adrian is frequently subjected to verbal and even physical abuse. But like Lazarus he continues to rise.
I know many gay brothers in traditional fraternities identify with the fear of coming out to or being outed by their brothers. Most black fraternities embrace Christianity as a foundation for their organization and have purposefully worked to exclude openly gay members.
So is there an alternative for openly gay brothers who don't want to retreat to the closet in order to experience brotherhood? Of course there is, actually there's hundreds of options. And I'm not talking about the MIAKA's. But here's just a few.
Take a moment and browse their websites to see what they have to offer. Remember there is always an alternative when you've been abused and rejected by traditional organizations. Be it a church or a fraternity, you should surround yourself with people who lift you up versus tearing you down.
A special thank you to Quan Rutledge, president of the Iota Chapter of Gamma Mu Phi in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Gamma Mu Phi Fraternity Inc.
Delta Phi Upsilon Fraternity Inc.
Kappa Psi Kappa Fraternity Inc.
And for my beautiful lesbian sisters- Beta Phi Omega Sorority Inc.