Monday, February 16, 2015

Q & A With Slade Childers



 
Slade was born and bred in Dallas, Texas as Steven Childers. When he moved to California, he legally changed his name to Slade. On March 11, 2015 he has been with the  United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for 30 years. He is a proud member of PFLAG Tulare/Kings Counties and the Visalia Pride Lion’s Club.

How long have you lived in the Central Valley? 

I lived in the Central Valley for 39 years.

Married or single?

I am in a long term relationship for 39 Years (as of Jan. 12th)  so the answer is ‘neither’. 

When did you come out to the first person in your life, or are you a straight ally?

I have lived on my own and have known I am gay since I was 17.  Coming out to my mother after I turned 18 was the ‘official’ announcement.

Something you like about yourself?

Being spontaneous and the ability to change. Ever evolving.

Something you dislike about yourself?

Honestly, sometimes I can be too hard on myself. Hey, I am only human.

Character trait in others that you most admire?

Those who get up and stand up. Those who stand up for their rights.

Character trait in others that you most dislike?

People who will not register to vote and yet complain about our elected officials and our government.

What is your biggest regret?

Taking 4 years of Spanish in High School and not being able to speak Spanish today.


What are you most passionate about?

FULL EQUALITY for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender + (LGBT) people.  Whoever you are in that plus (+) category are often times ones that I learn to become passionate about as well.

Favorite thing to do in your free time?

Lately it’s artwork. The medium is flowers and peacock feathers.

What aggravates you the most?

People who refuse “to agree to disagree”. You know, the ones who always know they are right and you are wrong. 

What makes you the happiest?

Being in love with the Love of my Life. His name is Ralph Josephs.

What are you, quite frankly, over?

Being around people who are constantly negative.

What is your biggest challenge?

Working and having to wait for full Transgender, Bisexual, Lesbian and Gay Equality. 

What was your favorite decade so far?

It’s always the Decade I am living in. The 60’s. 70’s, 80’s are decades where I have “been there, done that”.

Who is your favorite person to talk to?

The LOVE of my life – his name is Ralph Josephs.

Name a person you know personally who has had the biggest impact on you?

Rev. Troy Perry, Founder of the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches (www.ufmcc.com).  Honestly without knowing it, Rev. Perry saved my life. 

Name a person you don’t know who has had the biggest impact on you?

Alan Turing (google him).

The most important lesson you’ve learned so far?

“The #1 Law of the Universe is Self-Preservation” tied with “You shouldn’t mimic Heterosexuals, you should develop a Life(style) of your own”. 

Besides a phone, what piece of technology can you not live without?

Microwave

What superpower would you most like to have?

To travel as fast as Superman.

Who would you like to play you in a movie about your life?

Elton John. Elton would have to learn how to talk in a Southern type of Texas Accent to speak like me.

What is the best part of your day?

Hugging, kissing, holding hands and loving Ralph Josephs.

What is your proudest moment?

Watching and listening to “SAM AMM – AT LAST” on You Tube.  www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWGvKpIveM4   (Recorded in our home).

Who did you overlook in your past?

In being a rebellious teenage I feel I didn’t show my Dad how very much I loved him before he passed. I was 17 and he was 54.

What have you overcome?

A lot of loneliness and rejection by the Gay Community during my lawsuit against The City of Dallas Police Department (story on Queer Landia by Jim Reeves).  http://queerlandia.com/2014/09/10/while-scotus-ponders-marriage-equality-in-2014-a-look-back-at-dallas-1981/ Gay people were afraid to openly support me.

Where your ideal place to live?

I love Visalia. Home is where the heart is.

What words do you live by?

Actually I wrote them in a song which you can find on You Tube.  “Slade’s Yodi Yodi Song”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TI0AGw-Qrw4
** What is your favorite new quote? “It’s a SLADE thing. You wouldn’t understand.”

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