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The Consciousness-Raising, MILITANT GAY CHRISTIAN Blog that Rebukes both Bible Bigotry and RadiQueer Extremism! Featuring Controversial Faith-Based Essays BANNED by Yahoo! Contributor Network!

Updated: 2018-04-09T08:10:53.624-07:00


Life During Wartime (Part One)


This Ain't No Party . . .Christ, The Gay Martyr will cease being an active blog soon. Before that happens, I'd like to put some final thoughts on record.On Super Bowl Sunday 2010, the CBS network telecast the big game. The commercials that ran between plays are worth taking note of: CBS reversed a long-standing ban on issue-advocacy commercials and aired an explicit anti-abortion message from Focus On The Family. Most Gay people should know Focus On The Family as a vicious anti-Gay propaganda organization which portrays us as child predators and funds "ex-Gay" movements. CBS had worked extensively with the group to refine the ad and finesse its ideological message, At the same time, the network rejected an ad from a Gay couples matchmaking website. In its place ran a highly offensive commercial featuring two effeminate men engaged in "b*tch slaps".I take three lessons from these facts. 1) That CBS has no respect for its Gay viewers. 2) That CBS respects and wants to court Right Wing viewers. 3) That if I respect myself, I must never watch the CBS network again. I grew up with the network of "The Evening News with Walter Cronkite," "The Ed Sullivan Show", "Perry Mason" and "I Love Lucy". It is now as much a part of my past as those shows are!  This is an action I must take for the sake of maintaining my dignity as a Gay man.Some would accuse me of overreacting, of being "politically correct." Well, if my politics aren't correct, what's the point of me engaging in the political process? LGBT Americans need to draw a line in the sand, and incidents of brazen disrespect are where we should draw it. I'm not OK with disrespect! Are you? If so, why? Nobody should be OK with disrespect, especially the kind that fuels ignorance, misogyny and heterosexism! We've got to start taking disrespect seriously! When it's intense enough, disrespect can escalate into disturbing problems like vilification, disenfranchisement, violence and genocide. Don't look now, but that's already happened! It's been happening for a long time.If you're Gay, you can be legally deprived of housing and employment in most parts of the United States. The international picture is even more grave. You can be executed in Iran. You can be murdered in México. You can be flogged in Nigeria. You can be fined in Burundi, banned in Cuba, detained in China, imprisoned in Malawi, denounced in Poland and censored in Lithuania. You can be chased by mobs in Kenya, stoned by mobs in Jamaica, beaten up by police in Russia, and tortured to death by Muslim extremists in Iraq. You're sure to be legislated against in Uganda, rounded up in Egypt, deported from the United Arab Emirates, and sent to a labor camp in North Korea. Your human rights are protested in Spain, Zimbabwe, and India, and your existence is criminalized in more foreign countries than I can count; not to mention escalating rates of anti-Gay violence in the United States. And believe me, horrific things can happen to you anywhere if you're Transsexual! Very few countries in the world are safe for you to live in. Check out this State Department report.Among the many issues important to LGBT folk, there are none that need be prioritized over others. They're all pressing concerns, and they demand acting on simultaneously. Each Gay, Pansexual or Transsexual person prioritizes issues according to his or her own personal needs. That's the way it should be; I've always said so.However, I do believe there is one overarching issue that unites us all, regardless of ideology, gender, class, color, or national origin: Safety! The right to be secure in your LGBT person. The right to live, work, study and play without being beaten up, raped or killed! Freedom from endless threats and taunts. Freedom from hearing yourself denounced as a menace to society. Freedom from pressure to marry, produce children, identify as male or female, dress in a certain way, or join an "ex-Gay" program. Freedom from the indignity of seeing your citizenship downgraded to second-class! In other words, we need a world in which our basic humanity [...]

Life During Wartime (Part Two)


This Ain't No Disco . . .The word "Transgender", as I explained in my essay titled "The Angel Gabriel" has acquired an importance to me that I never could have predicted. I now recognize its meaning, its true meaning, as the key to LGBT identity! Transgender refers to people who transcend biological gender. It has nothing to do with the idea of being "born in the wrong body", although people who feel that way do fall under its definition. So do I, a Gay man who has never strongly identified as male.Ironically, had I been thinking about it back then, I could have gleaned the truth about gender from my high school Spanish books. In Spanish, nouns have gender. Those nouns with the prefix of "la" and that end in "a" are feminine. Those with the prefix of "el" and that end in "o" are masculine. However, there are exceptions to that rule! Some words have blended gender: la mano (the hand), el día (the day), el alma (the soul). Therefore, there are three genders in the Spanish language: Masculine, feminine and neutral. These three genders also exist in nature; LGBT existence is proof of that! It's time for people of binary gender (heterosexual men and women) to stop denying reality. We need to stop denying it, too!Science has no definitive answer to the question of why some people are homosexual, pansexual and transsexual. However, Scripture does provide an answer. Care to join me for some Bible study? I promise you'll be surprised. What I have to say might even rock your world!Correctly translated, the Book of Genesis tells us that God created humankind in His own image/In the image of God He created him/Male and female He created him. This passage establishes that God is a Transgender entity! The lower case “him" refers to Adam, whose male and female elements were split into separate bodies so that procreation could start. Men and women are two parts of a whole that long to be united; that's the reason for heterosexual attraction! So this teaching doesn't explain homosexual attraction . . . or does it? Jesus Christ revisits the creation story in the Gospel According to Matthew:MATTHEW 19: 4-6(Jesus Christ said) "Have you not read that the One who made them at the beginning made them male and female and said: 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh?' So they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, let no one separate.Incorrect translation ("them" substituted for "him") has resulted in a failure of most readers, even Bible scholars, to fully grasp what this Scripture means! Mandated heterosexual marriage isn't the objective here! Men marrying women is the means to reach the objective. The goal is to "become one flesh" as they were "at the beginning". In other words, men and women must become like Adam was in the beginning. Through marriage, they approximate the blended gender that Adam possessed before Eve was created. At that time, he was modeled precisely in God’s transgender image; so the ultimate goal of marriage is to make men and women more like God!That same chapter in the Gospel of Matthew identifies a special group of people for whom teachings on heterosexual marriage are irrelevant. Jesus Christ calls these people "eunuchs who have been so from birth” (Matthew 19:12). He also mentions eunuchs created by man-made means (castration), but born eunuchs are the ones important to this particular discussion. The word “eunuch” means “castrated man” today, but that was not so in the ancient world! Individuals believed to be of a third gender, a unisex gender, were accorded eunuch status. They also had a reputation for same-gender sexuality (one last time, let me direct readers to Faris Malik's excellent Born Eunuchs web pages for more info).Significantly, the Savior implies that eunuchs have a connection to Heaven. Now, let’s tie all these loose strands together.!Science and religion agree that humanity evolved from a single life form. Christianity calls th[...]

Life During Wartime (Part Three)


This Ain't No Foolin' Around!What I'm about to say I've said many times before. People haven't paid much attention in the past. Pardon me, then, while I hit the repeat button!We must develop a sense of outrage at our own persecution. Without it, the equality movement cannot succeed! In particular, we must stop tolerating "faith-based" organizations that siphon our tax money while banning and condemning us! If we cooperate with our enemies when they subject us to injustices, they will do so eagerly. We must own up to our part in this state of affairs, and change our behavior accordingly!One way to effectively fight back against organized religion would be a Truth Commission. This commission would stage hearings similar to those held in post-apartheid South Africa. We would give public testimony about how demonizing church doctrine has pushed us past the brink of suicide, torn our family bonds apart, vilified us at our own funerals, excluded us from fellowship, and done everything possible to sever our relationships with God. The Truth Commission would travel around the country soliciting testimony from LGBT Americans. In addition, religious leaders of conscience would be invited to offer apologies on behalf of their faith traditions. Naturally, the hearings would be webcast. Putting our collective victimization on record in this way could be enormously compelling! We could deal a crippling blow to the "Ex-Gay" movement, and seriously compromise the undeservedly squeaky clean image of evangelism.Also, why don't we have a Gay Tea Party movement? Why aren't we targeting Federal and State laws that discriminate against us with the threat of taxpayer revolt? Jeanne Phillips, the advice columnist known as Dear Abby, suggested years ago that hefty tax breaks for LesBiGay citizens was a fair trade-off for discriminatory public policy. It's time to explore her idea in earnest!Fighting bigotry is both an external and an internal process. We must check our own behavior for evidence of internalized homophobia. For example, a lot of Gay-interest blogs and websites publish photos of professional sportsmen hugging or patting one another's butts after scoring a goal. These photos are accompanied by snarky captions to the effect of that's so Gay, or snide jokes that question the players' sexual orientation. This is reprehensible! What makes this kind of ridicule any different from the scornful f*g-baiting that heterosexual males engage in? I scolded the staff of for doing this, and much to my surprise, they removed an offending post. It's the first (and probably the last!) time any Gay activist website listened to me.Whether I'm listened to or not, facts are facts: Adopting the oppressor's methods of talking and thinking about ourselves empowers nobody but the oppressor! "Reclaiming" the hateful habits of our enemies is a monumentally foolish act, akin to hugging a venomous snake to your breast. The most vicious bite is the one you invite! I've posted this quote from the late Lesbian author Audre Lorde in countless comments sections, but it seems to resonate more strongly every time I use it: "The master's tools will never dismantle the master's house." Drop those tools, dammit. Drop them now!The most alarming effect internalized homophobia has on us comes in the form of lethal sexuality. Millions of young Gay and Pansexual men, especially those of color, risk their health with shame-based sex practices like "fisting", "sounding", "bare-backing", double penetration, auto-erotic asphyxiation and promiscuity. Alcohol and drugs tend to flow freely during these activities, distorting sound judgment. It's fatalistic hedonism, a mindset that Madonna chillingly captures in her song "Revolver": My love's a revolver/My sex is a killer/Do you wanna die happy?/Do you wanna die happy?* Massive death by orgasm is as effective a way as any to halt the progress of Gay Rights; but would we really die happy, knowing we had rendered the Stonewall riots meaningless? Please think abou[...]

Life During Wartime (Part Four)


The Revolution Begins At Home!I know all about going home alone. The Gay blogosphere and I have had a most difficult relationship! I've been banned from the comments section of the Ex-Gay Watch website, threatened with banning at Pam's House Blend, and savaged by patrons of Wayne Besen’s blog while the blogmaster remained silent. The last time I spoke to “Ex-Gay” ministry survivor Peterson Toscano, he called my writing "gunk." Blog trolls have threatened me physically. That’s just the negative stuff I can remember; there was lots more! What brought such stinging disapproval down on my head? Nothing but my message that Gay identity should be respected. That it should always be thought of, spoken of and treated with respect, and that the process begins with Gay people themselves!I really do believe that the revolution begins at home, and I desperately want it to begin. Accordingly, my goal has been to light a fire under the Gay blogosphere. If I felt it was necessary, I wouldn't hesitate to burn bridges! I've criticized the exhibitionism and frivolity that dominates Gay Pride celebrations. I've criticized the consensus idea that Gay = Sex. Repeatedly, I've criticized demeaning portrayals of Gay people in the media. I've criticized activists for not pushing Gay-related instruction in school curricula. I've criticized violent and racist imagery in Gay pornography. I've called out counter-productive and self-promoting Gay activism. I've scolded activists for their reluctance to directly confront the religious Right Wing. I've hammered home the point that Civil Rights struggles are about morality, not politics. Drama for its own sake never interested me, but there’s nothing like it for raising consciousness!I like to rip the bedclothes off retrograde thinking and expose idiocy in all its shameful nakedness! Gay organizations allying themselves with groups like NAMBLA (which has happened a few times over the years) is wrong, and I've said so. Denouncing marriage equality on Left Wing ideological grounds is wrong, and I've said so. Praising TV shows that treat Gay people like fetishes ("Queer As Folk", "Queer Eye For The Straight Guy", "The L Word") is wrong, and I've said so. Marginalizing LGBT history as "Queer Studies" is wrong, and I've said so. Exporting the label "queer" to Gay activists in the developing world is deplorable, and I've said so. Dialoguing with "ex-Gay" propagandists as if their arguments were reasonable is dangerous, and I've been penalized for saying so. I don't give a damn! I'm not afraid to get personal, either. I've laid into extreme butch/femme role playing, the equating of Gay sex with sado-masochism, and public sexual activity.My take-no-prisoners attitude proved unpopular, and I really shouldn’t have been surprised. Saying things nobody wants to hear or think about will make you unpopular, no doubt about that! However, the alternative is to STFU, go along to get along, and be just another dishonest pundit, pretending that the Emperor parading down the avenue isn't as naked as a jaybird. I find myself temperamentally incapable of being that kind of pundit!Dig it . . . I'm the guy who'll tell kids that Santa Claus is a myth! I'm the guy who'll tell Sinatra fanatics that their idol didn't sing so great in his later years. I'm the Black guy who'll disagree when Black folks deny skin color was a factor when they voted for President Obama. Lord deliver me . . . I just can't help myself! I've got an automatic bullsh*t detector that won't quit! Not only will I risk going home alone, I won't even dance to music that I don’t like. Guess I took the lyrics of that old Mama Cass song too much to heart:You're gonna be knowin'/The loneliest kind of lonely/It may be rough goin'/Just to do your thing/The hardest thing to do/But you've gotta make your own kind of music/Sing your own special song/Make your own kind of music/Even if nobody else sings along.*I still like that song. I like it because the lyrics ring so true. I[...]

Echoes From A Birmingham Jail (Part One)


CORETTA SCOTT KINGRev. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s April 1963 "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" is one of the defining documents of the American anti-segregation movement. Just about anybody who was alive in the early 1960s has heard of it. Dr. King wrote the Letter during a period of incarceration in Birmingham, Alabama. This was one of numerous occasions when civil disobedience on behalf of racial equality landed him behind bars. If the work MLK put into his "Birmingham Jail" essay is any indication, he certainly used his time in lock-up constructively! It was written in response to a public statement by eight White Alabama clergymen who opposed the confrontational tactics he used. They’d denounced him for leading street demonstrations, and argued that other, less disruptive means should be used to combat institutionalized racism.It should come as no surprise that Dr. King’s oratory was no less powerful on paper than it was in the pulpit. After publication in the 12 June 1963 edition of The Christian Century, his response stirred such a strong reaction that it was distributed more widely. Most people read the text when The Atlantic Monthly reprinted it later that month. The following year, the Birmingham Jail letter became the centerpiece of Dr. King’s best-selling book Why We Can’t Wait.After the passage of Proposition 8 in California, and many media stories about Black Californians supporting the measure by huge margins, an old debate flared up again: Are Gay Rights civil rights? Are Gay activists being arrogant when they answer that question in the affirmative? And is it wrong to expect President-Elect Barack Obama, an African-American, to identify with LGBT citizens fighting separate-but-equal provisions?To me, a Black Gay man who has endured both racism and heterosexism, and who sees no difference in the kind of discrimination they generate, this debate has always sounded silly! That said, I find it outrageous that some anti-segregation veterans would argue that Black folk have an exclusive claim to the term civil rights, and that no other movement dare use it. I beg your friggin' pardon? Have these folks never heard of the Women’s Rights movement? The Farm Workers’ movement? The Disabled Rights movement? I don’t recall hearing any objections when those groups adopted the language! I find it even more outrageous that some idiotic Lesbian and Gay pundits lend this argument credence!In the final decade of her life, Dr. Martin Luther King’s widow, Coretta Scott King, stressed repeatedly that Gay Rights was a civil rights concern! She was the “fierce advocate” President-Elect Obama now claims to be, but unlike him, she walked the talk! In 1998, she called for Civil Rights Movement veterans to support our struggle. In 2003, she personally invited the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force to participate in a 40th anniversary commemoration of her husband’s March on Washington speech. In 2004, two years before her untimely death from cancer, she shocked many in the Black community by championing marriage equality (something her colleague, Rev. Joseph Lowery, still refuses to do). Mrs. King also stated publicly that, contrary to what some religious reactionaries might believe, her late husband did have LGBT citizens in mind when he spoke of equal rights for all people!I knew this was true because an openly Gay man, Bayard Rustin, had been one of Dr. King’s chief organizers. But is an understanding that Gay people deserve equal rights reflected in his writings? While MLK never made any explicit references to LesBiGay Americans (nobody with a national profile spoke openly about us back then! Besides, his enemies were f*g-baiting him behind the scenes), I suspected his language was broad enough that support for LGBT equality could be inferred. I also suspected that a study of his writings would point up strong parallels between racism and heterosexism. My suspicions were confirmed almost immediatel[...]

Echoes From A Birmingham Jail (Part Two)


CORETTA SCOTT KINGDr. King shared my annoyance with those who counsel the disenfranchised to wait for justice. Wait until a court victory is certain! Wait until there’s less bigotry in the culture! Wait until the political winds start blowing in your direction! He heard all those kinds of warnings. MLK certainly wasn’t blind to the political realities of his day; but as a minister of the Gospel, he saw himself spearheading a moral crusade!He knew that a moral crusade couldn’t align itself to a partisan political timetable and retain its credibility! He also knew that African-American equality would never be a priority for politicians counting on the votes of racist constituents for re-election. In 1963, that category included John F. Kennedy, the man Barack Obama has frequently been compared to. Dr. King and his civil rights marchers couldn't count on President Kennedy to do the right thing. They had no choice but to crash his dinner party! They had to create tension in the Kennedy administration and lay groundwork for progress on racial issues. This is what LGBT "leadership" fails to grasp! Much of it blanches at the idea of protest rallies and marches. They seem to think the Democratic Party can and will do most of our work for us. Just when did "career politician" and "Gay Rights activist" become interchangeable terms? Far too many people are sold on this wacky idea, even though Dr. King yanked the rug out from under it nearly 50 years ago:Frankly, I have yet to engage in a direct action campaign that was "well-timed" in the view of those who have not suffered unduly from the disease of segregation. For years now I have heard the word "Wait!" It rings in the ear of every Negro with piercing familiarity. This "Wait" has almost always meant "Never." We must come to see, with one of our distinguished jurists, that "justice too long delayed is justice denied" . . .Dr. King also shared Rosa Parks’ impatience with life as a marginalized citizen (see my 2008 Christ, The Gay Martyr essay titled "Save The Country”, Parts One and Two). He didn't suffer segregation laws silently, and I doubt he would understand today's calls for Gay people to tolerate ongoing injustices like DOMA and the US military's "Don't Ask/Don't Tell" policy! The most important thing about his Birmingham Jail letter is that it made palpable for millions of White Americans the sting of bigotry’s lash on the backs of their Black compatriots. See if you don't feel it, too, all these years later:Perhaps it is easy for those who have never felt the stinging darts of segregation to say, "Wait." But when you have seen vicious mobs lynch your mothers and fathers at will and drown your sisters and brothers at whim . . . when you have seen hate-filled policemen curse, kick and even kill your Black brothers and sisters . . . when you see the vast majority of your twenty million Negro brothers smothering in an airtight cage of poverty in the midst of an affluent society . . . when you suddenly find your tongue twisted and your speech stammering as you seek to explain to your six-year-old daughter why she can't go to the public amusement park that has just been advertised on television, and see tears welling up in her eyes when she is told that Funtown is closed to colored children . . . when you have to concoct an answer for a five-year-old son who is asking: "Daddy, why do White people treat colored people so mean?". . . when you take a cross-country drive and find it necessary to sleep night after night in the uncomfortable corners of your automobile because no motel will accept you . . . when you are humiliated day-in and day-out by nagging signs reading "White" and "Colored" . . . when your first name becomes "n*gger," your middle name becomes "boy" (however old you are) and your last name becomes "John," and your wife and mother are never given the respected title "Mrs." . . . when you are harried by day and hau[...]

Save The Country (Part One)


ROSA PARKSFor the benefit of LGBT folk who know little or nothing about Christianity (and there are quite a few of you out there), here, taken from Scripture, is a parallel between the treatment of Jesus Christ thousands of years ago and our treatment in modern times:LUKE 23: 1-5, 13-24Then the assembly rose as a body and brought Jesus before Pilate (the Governor). They began to accuse Him, saying: "We found this man perverting our nation . . . saying that He Himself is the Messiah, a king." Then Pilate asked Him, "Are You the King of the Jews?" (Jesus Christ) answered: "You say so." Then Pilate said to the Chief Priests and the crowds: "I find no basis for an accusation against this man." But they were insistent and said: "He stirs up the people by teaching . . ."Pilate then called together the Chief Priests, the leaders and the people, and said to them: "You brought me this man as one who was perverting the people, and here I have examined Him in your presence and have not found this man guilty of any of your charges against Him . . . He has done nothing to deserve death. (But) they all shouted together, "Away with this fellow! Release Barabbas for us!" (This was a man who had been put in prison . . . for murder.)Pilate, wanting to release Jesus, addressed them again, but they kept shouting: "Crucify, crucify Him!" A third time he said to them: "Why? What evil has He done? I have found in Him no ground for the sentence of death. I will therefore have Him flogged, and then release Him." But they kept urgently demanding with loud shouts that He should be crucified, and their voices prevailed. So Pilate gave his verdict that their demand should be granted. He released the man they asked for . . . and he handed Jesus over as they wished.Like Jesus Christ, we speak and live the truth of our lives. Like Jesus Christ, we are condemned for telling our truth! We are told that we spread perversion. We are judged for transgressions that our enemies fail to articulate convincingly. Like Jesus Christ, we are found blameless by a judiciary (most State Supreme Courts). The judiciary sees no wrong in what we do (seek legal recognition of our committed relationships). Like Jesus Christ, we then stand by and watch the judiciary cave in to political cowardice! We see judges abdicate their duty as jurists and throw our fates to a hostile electorate. If nothing else, this infamous incident shows how outrageously unethical putting justice up for popular vote is. Anyone can see that Jesus Christ was railroaded! We’re being railroaded, too! And the worst part of it is, we’re helping to steer the train!Why do we validate ballot initiatives designed to legally marginalize us? For the past twelve years, we've suffered the passage of "marriage protection" amendments in State after State, all bankrolled by religious denominations who are as hostile to us as the Hebrew hierarchy was to Jesus Christ. (Don't doubt that many of them would eagerly impose the death penalty on us if they could!) We decry these evil campaigns to disenfranchise us of our citizenship rights, but at the same time, we lend them credibility by launching counter-campaigns.We decide that voting on marriage equality as if it were a proposed tax increase is a perfectly acceptable thing to do, as long as we win! We don’t win, but we still play the game. We willingly play a political crap game with our dignity that we're certain to lose! What other outcome could there be, given centuries of superstition and misinformation about Gay identity? Not to mention daily reinforcement of such ignorance by modern religious ideologues? Jesus Christ had good reason for playing a losing game: The salvation of humankind. What’s our excuse?After these odious ballot initiatives inevitably pass (twenty-nine so far), some of us get to brag about having added another high-profile political fight to our activist resumes. That's [...]

Save The Country (Part Two)


ROSA PARKSA lot of people criticized San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom for sounding too defiant in a “No on 8” campaign commercial. He told California voters that, whether they liked it or not, the time had come for marriage equality! Too defiant? Compared to what? Would that most of us could be even half as defiant as he was! If Conservatives get offended by strident denunciation of discriminatory public policy, tough t*tty! Lord knows, they've offended us often enough! Mayor Newsom's righteous indignation inspires me and reminds me of Rosa Parks. When she refused to give up her bus seat to a White man in 1955, she demanded of the policemen who arrested her: “Why do you push us around?” She put herself at risk of a beating, but she was too angry to care! Years later, she reflected:It’s not that I was fed up (that day). I was fed up all my life, as far back as I can remember, with being treated as less than a free person . . . as long as we continued to comply with these rules and regulations that kept us crushed down as a people, then the power structure would always say: "Well, they are not complaining, and they accept this, so they (must be) satisfied with it.” Mrs. Parks wasn’t satisfied! Mrs. Parks was cheesed off! Mrs. Parks felt entitled to equal treatment as an American citizen, and she wasn't shy about saying so. Neither are the Black, Latino and Asian advocacy groups who have filed Friend Of The Court briefs on behalf of Lambda Legal, the ACLU, and others who are challenging the legality of Proposition 8. Per Reuters News Agency reporter Pete Henderson, one of those briefs reads as follows:The entire purpose behind the Constitutional principle of equal protection would be subverted if the Constitutional protection of unpopular minorities were subject to simple majority rule. This case is not simply about Gay and Lesbian equality. The history of California demonstrates with sobering clarity the potential for disfavored minorities to be subjected to oppression by hostile majorities. Indeed, it does; the mass internment of Japanese Americans during World War II immediately springs to mind! (Wouldn't it be ironic if the same groups some White Lesbians and Gay men are blaming for Prop 8's passage end up supplying the legal arguments that convince California's Supreme Court to reverse it?)Let me clear up a misconception here, one that has been given currency by a host of misguided Gay bloggers and op-ed writers: It is not necessary for a majority of Americans to approve of equal rights for LesBiGay citizens in order for us to exercise those rights! When women won the right to vote in 1920, did the majority of men approve? I seriously doubt it! And I know for a fact most White people weren’t thrilled when the Civil Rights Act passed Congress in July of 1964; White backlash against that legislation partially explains why the Republican Party took control of our southern States in subsequent decades!As long as Pat Robertson and his ilk are allowed to ply their Bible-based heterosexism openly, we will continue being vilified by a sizable number of our fellow citizens! This doesn’t mean that their hatred will always be reflected in the laws that govern us, though. As proof, just look at current realities for women, Latinos and African-Americans. Social progress can and does occur despite lingering prejudice!It’s not group popularity that wins struggles like ours. It’s perseverance! If you really believe your cause is just, then you won’t let legal or political setbacks stifle your activism. You use the courts whenever possible, civil disobedience whenever necessary, and you press your issue constantly until you achieve your goal or something close to it!The incremental victories of the anti-abortion movement ought to teach us that much; three decades ago, the odds were stacked against "pro-life" activists, too![...]

The Pervert Mentality (Part One)


What is the Pervert Mentality? It’s something that my friend, Rev. Jerry Maneker and I often discuss when we exchange emails. Jerry describes it as "a counter-revolutionary mindset that reflects and projects selfish hedonism". I describe it as a regressive mindset that reflects and projects internalized shame. We both agree that it fetishizes Gay people as "queers" or sex perverts, much in the same way a racist mentality fetishizes Black people as primitive and subhuman. The main difference is that the Pervert Mentality is as prevalent among its victims (LGBT folk) as it is among their oppressors!I could go into further detail, but rather than try to abstractly describe this phenomenon, let me show you what it is instead. Jerry recently sent me a perfect (and perfectly disgusting) example. Check out the following excerpts from a syndicated column that appeared in the May 15th edition of LA Weekly; it's called “Ladies Love Gay Male Porn”. With a title like that, you’d expect a column to be provocative, right? You wouldn’t necessarily expect it to be offensive, though.  Well, there’s a way to offend with excessive provocation. Author, lecturer, columnist and pornographic film producer Tristan Taormino shows you how it’s done!I just got back from a weekend at the University of California at Santa Barbara, where I attended "Console-ing Passions: An International Conference on Television, Audio, Video, New Media, and Feminism". . . it was three days of geeking out with academics about TV, the Internet, and various kinds of media studies . . . naturally, the first panel I went to was all about porn, with four scholars presenting papers on Lesbian identity politics and pornography . . . a bunch of women stuck around afterwards to continue the discussion that the panel had, um, stimulated, and we began talking about the kind of porn we all watched . . . (someone) chimed in: "Do you like f*g porn? All my queer (sic) female friends do." Hers wasn't a surprising question. I know Lesbians who dig it more than any other kind of hardcore fare.Somehow, I don’t think she’s talking about average, every day, garden-variety Lesbians!I briefly dated a genderqueer (sic) d*ke who just loved Gay male porn . . . (especially films) which feature young, hairless European lads (think the boy-on-boy version of the Straight barely-legal genre). The boys are very pretty and androgynous, and some of them could definitely be mistaken for d*kes with their clothes on. But other girl-loving girls love über-butch men, leather daddies, and big hairy bears, so it's not always about androgyny. By now, I think it's commonplace to accept that queer (sic) women love queer (sic) male porn . . ."Commonplace?" “By now?” Methinks the lady doth exaggerate! I patronized adult video stores for many years, and never did I see so much as half a Lesbian couple browsing Gay or Straight titles! Granted, Ms. Taormino could be referring to mail order business, but her claim that all homosexual women consume pornography is ludicrous! Historically, Lesbian feminists have taken a dim view of X-rated films.. . . some d*kes can get their fix of queerness (sic), both the lust and the cultural aesthetics, via Gay porn, even though it features people of a different gender . . . queer (sic) is often attracted to queer (sic) first and foremost, like when the guy I lusted after in high school turned out to be Gay . . .Hot damn! That’s ironclad scientific reasoning she’s using there.. . . plenty of Lesbians identify with various forms of masculinity . . . they may like to fantasize and play with gender and sex. Gay porn gives them a range of masculine desires to relate to or lust after. For those d*kes who themselves identify as f*g, or who like butch/butch, boi/boi (sic), or Transman/Transman sex, they can see a hyper-masculine version of t[...]

The Pervert Mentality (Part Two)


Now, there’s nothing wrong with expressing your opinion in print about adult films. I recently did so myself in a post called “The Big Nasty”. However, Ms. Taormino is doing more than just sharing her feelings about pornography. She’s also revealing how she feels about LGBT folk, and that revelation is most disturbing! The objectifying tone and denigrating vocabulary she favors scream out the presence of a depraved Pervert Mentality! Let me direct your attention to:1) Her eagerness to disparage Gay identity. Pervert Mentality sufferers consider so-called political correctness (otherwise known as respect for another person's dignity!) a crime akin to aiming a pistol at someone and shooting him down. Yet they see no problem in aiming murderous epithets at a minority group! Since they claim membership in the same group, wouldn't that qualify as murder/suicide? Pervs ridicule those of us who object to slurs, disregard the damage they do to Gay self-esteem, and refuse to consider what impression their (dare I say it?) queer acts of verbal self-annihilation leave on heterosexual Americans. At best, Straight folk are confused about who and what we are; normalization of sex and gender insults only worsens that state of confusion!2) Her eagerness to identify with oppressors via use of the aforementioned ugly pejoratives. When Pervs cut loose on LGBT folk with filthy labels, they come across as either mischievously ignorant or arrogantly ignorant. I would definitely characterize Ms. Taormino’s demeanor as the latter; her brandishing of sexual slurs has a decided swagger to it. Reading her copy, it was hard not to think of a leering, foul-mouthed male chauvinist pig! In fact, I'd like to have filed a sexual harassment complaint against her. That she'd crave unequal power dynamics in her erotic encounters comes as no surprise to me: Her love of heterosexist language suggests an inner desire to subjugate Gay people!3) Her eagerness to fetishize Lesbians and Gay men. She and her “f*g-loving” lady friends objectify us to the point where we almost seem less than human! She describes our “culture” as orgasm-based. If you judged Gay people solely by her characterizations, you’d never guess that we we eat, sleep, go to school, earn a living, care for loved ones or do anything but have sex! This is so typical! Pervs define LGBT folk exclusively in sexual terms, which, of course, is no different from what uninformed Straight people do! They take our image and narrow it down to a crude, pornographic stereotype. The parallels to racial objectification are very strong.4) Her characterization of homosexual orientation as a “sexually fluid” identity. Pervs scoff at the idea of LGBT folk having unique sexual orientations. No, we merely "play with gender and sex", and when we do that, it's called "queerness"! They insist that, dammit, despite their inborn attraction to women, Lesbians do lust after men! Especially men “who could be mistaken for ‘d*kes’ with their clothes on” . . . never mind that the context here is porn flicks, where clothes invariably come off. Pervs are notorious for deliberately confusing homosexuality with bisexuality; it jibes with their omni-sexual worldview! Unfortunately, it also feeds into the myth that Gay people just need the "right" opposite sex partner to jump-start their dormant heterosexual attraction. Claims of homosexual "fluidity” are even more alarming when they include lechery for “barely legal” boys! Holy potential pedophilia, Batman! Approval of underage sex often forms part of the Pervert Mentality (see my earlier series of posts titled “The Pleasure Seekers”).5) Her idealization of Gay porn to the point of making misleading statements about it, or in this case, allowing such statements to pass without correction. It has neve[...]

Whatever Happened To Mary Tyler Moore? (Part One)


It's time you started living/It's time you let someone else do some giving/Love is all around, no need to waste it/You can have this town, why don't you take it?/You might just make it after all.Excerpt from "Love Is All Around," theme song from "The Mary Tyler Moore Show"Words and Music by Sonny Curtis.Copyright 1970 by Mark Three Music (BMI)Every year around this time, LGBT folk all over the world commemorate the Stonewall rebellion. On 28 June 1969, the patrons of a Greenwich Village Gay bar reacted violently to police harassment. Joined by loiterers outside the bar, they started a riot that lasted for three nights. At that time, Gay identity was still a criminal offense and heavily stigmatized. Closeted Lesbians, Gay men, Pansexual and Transfolk sought fellowship in seedy bars that the police frequently raided. Frequent victims of unfair prosecutions, public humiliation and Bible-based discrimination, they suffered silently, accepting pariah status as their lot in life. However, by the late '60s, a sense of outrage was manifesting itself. Inspired by the social activism of other minority groups, urban LGBT folk were no longer willing to accept the more blatant forms of heterosexist oppression. Gay Pride was born out of this defiant new attitude! The first Pride parade took place along New York City's Sixth Avenue in late July of '69. They became annual events in New York, and over the next two decades, they spread to major cities around the country, and the world.Now Gay Pride parades are huge tourist attractions, drawing thousands of spectators in US cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, New Orleans, Miami and Washington DC, as well as in foreign metropoles like Paris, France, Sydney, Australia, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. They've evolved into elaborate pageants that culminate in Mardi Gras-style orgies of public revelry. Stars of stage, screen and records serve as grand marshals for them, TV and radio stations cover them as entertainment news, and in some cases, they even receive corporate sponsorship. We've certainly come a long way from the four hundred brave LGBT pioneers who dared to march through the streets of Manhattan singing "We Shall Overcome"!Lately, though, some LGBT activists and their allies have begun asking whether Pride parades haven't outlasted their usefulness. They question the time and expense lavished on these spectacles. They worry about the wild image these events present of a minority group that increasingly craves mainstream respectability. Most of all, they wonder why we put so much energy into celebrating when our battle for equality hasn't been won. Not only hasn't it been won, it's not even close to being over!We have so much work left to do! We still can't marry in most places. We still can't adopt children in most places. In some jurisdictions, we're not even allowed to raise our own offspring! We still can't safely express public affection in most places. We still aren't protected from adverse job actions based on sexual orientation. We still aren't protected from co-worker harassment on the job. We still can't serve openly in the military. We still can't join or serve as troop leaders in the Boy Scouts. Most churches still won't let us serve openly as administrators. Some of them will excommunicate us upon discovering our status.Our history still can't be taught in most schools. Our youth still suffer horrendous bullying in school. Most of us who work in government or in the news and entertainment media are still afraid to leave the closet. Lies and distortions about us are still rampant in the media. Our tax money is used to support "faith-based" organizations that can legally refuse to hire us! Preachers of color are increasingly joining forces with White Fundamentalists to oppose our Rights agenda. [...]

Whatever Happened To Mary Tyler Moore? (Part Two)


Pride Parades no longer serve their original purpose. They're clearly not political statements now. They're nothing but festivals! They feature celebrities and comedians and Pop singers. They provide sales and advertising venues for vendors. They've become little more than excuses for people to dress up in crazy costumes, feed their faces, guzzle beer and gyrate to dance music!Over the years, they've grown increasingly decadent, too. Today, the typical Gay Pride parade features lots of banners emblazoned with the word "queer", contingents of leather and discipline fetishists in full regalia, drag performers (usually not Transpersons) dressed strictly for flamboyance's sake, sexually suggestive float themes, and frequently, more nudity than can legally be gotten away with! Some parades feature a Lesbian procession billed as a "d*ke march"(sounds similar to a death march, doesn't it? Whenever I hear about this event, I can't help but imagine the Cherokee Trail of Tears)!Every now and then, you might see a voter registration booth on the sidelines. Overwhelmingly, though, the organizers of Pride celebrations value entertainment over empowerment. Hedonism over activism. Frivolity over profundity. Shock value over shared values! They couldn't care less about stereotypical imagery and behavior. What message are they sending to Straight society? That Gay people are all about parties and sex? Unfortunately, our enemies are sending out the very same message, and it works to their advantage much more than it works to ours!The current generation of Gay activists doesn't understand that stereotypes are a double-edged sword. Sure, they're entertaining (up to a point), but they also limit the upward mobility of a minority group! They make very powerful first impressions. When we constantly present ourselves as hedonistic and frivolous, guess what? Millions of Americans who know nothing else about us think we're hedonistic and frivolous! What we consider edgy and exciting they often find threatening and contemptible, and they act out those feelings in the most inconvenient places, like the voting booth!Back in the 1950s and '60s, African-Americans understood the great harm stereotyping can do. They knew better than to embrace negative characterizations at the same time they were fighting a battle for equality! Do you think they'd have tolerated a Black equivalent of "Queer Eye For The Straight Guy", "The L Word" or "Queer As Folk"? Get real! They wouldn't have, and they didn't. Organizations like the NAACP attacked demeaning images of Black women and men wherever they found them. They successfully drove stereotypical comedies like "Amos And Andy" off the networks, and demanded more dignified TV portrayals.Half a century later, some people argue that those shows don't look so bad in retrospect. What they fail to consider is the historical context! Fifty years ago, African-Americans were legally segregated, systematically discriminated against, and lynched with shocking regularity. All the while, White Americans viewed them as sources for amusement. They laughed at rampant media images of grinning Uncle Toms, folksy Aunt Jemimahs, and lazy, irresponsible n'er-do-wells. Neither the Black community nor its entitlements of citizenship were taken seriously. The situation was very similar to what LGBT Americans face now!Oh, I can hear some of you squealing like stuck pigs! Political correctness sucks, you fume. Free expression rocks! Freedom of expression is an important thing to have, but having dignity is important, too! Sometimes, you have to forego one to achieve the other. Sometimes, you need to command respect!We haven't learned how to prioritize! Do we want to better our standing in society or not? Do we want to be taken seriously or not? I[...]

Whatever Happened To Mary Tyler Moore? (Part Three)


The seminars could be divided up into any number of educational components. Here are fifteen potential topics and two suggestions for forums. Each seminar need not include every topic; components could vary from year to year.History Component: Presentations on the history of Gay Rights activism in the Western world, and discussion of what direction our activism should take in the future.Science Component: Exploration of current scientific research into findings about the nature of LGBT identity. Presentation of evidence refuting the notions that gender is binary and that human beings can choose their sexual orientation.International Component: Presentations on the repression LGBT people suffer outside the USA, and discussion of how to best combat injustice in non-Western countries and cultures.Legal Component: Discussion of legal issues pertinent to LGBT folk. Identification of areas where class action lawsuits might be useful. Resource linkage.Physical Health Component: Identification and discussion of physical health needs specific to Lesbians, Gay men, Pansexual and Transsexual persons. Resource linkage. Could be split into gender-based subcomponents.Psychological Health Component: Identification of mental health needs specific to Lesbians, Gay men, Pansexual and Transsexual persons, with special emphasis on traumatization and internalized shame. Discussion of how and why LGBT folk internalize shame. Targeting of shame-based behavior. Resource linkage.Youth Component: Identification and discussion of concerns specific to LGBT children and teenagers, with special emphasis on hostile school environments. Resource linkage.Senior component: Identification and discussion of concerns specific to LGBT elders, with special emphasis on social networks, health issues and retirement options. Resource linkage.Marriage Component: Presentations on the planning and execution of Lesbian and Gay weddings, Holy Unions and civil unions, and discussion of issues pertinent to married couples. Discussion about the dynamics of long-term same-gender partnerships. Resource linkage.Parenting Component: Identification and discussion of concerns specific to Lesbian and Gay parents.Religious Component: Identification and discussion of specific challenges facing Gay Christians, Muslims, Jews and others, and how best to respond to them. Facilitation of direct action tactics. Deconstruction of Right Wing theology.Integrity Component: Debate about the wisdom or folly of maintaining the collective closet from an activist point of view. Discussions may involve identification of closeted LGBT individuals in positions of power and influence!Political Component: A vehicle for communication between Gay leadership and grass roots activists. Identification of local and national social justice priorities. Discussion of strategies for pursuing them. Faciliation of direct action tactics. Resource linkage.Media Component: Identification of anti-Gay propaganda sources in local and national media. Discussion of strategies for combating them. Facilitation of direct action tactics. Would include a mandate to revive the Fairness Doctrine in Federal Communications law, which would require broadcasters to give us equal on-air time with our demonizers!Military Component: Identification of needs and concerns specific to LGBT veterans and enlisted personnel. Discussion of strategies for stopping unjust discharges and abolishing the US military's "Don't Ask/Don't Tell" policy. Resource linkage. Long overdue honors ceremonies for Gay veterans!Since people do get hungry at events like this, the seminars would need to take a mid-day break for food and (non-alcoholic!) refreshments, hopefully provided by LGBT caterers. Music should be a part of [...]

Whatever Happened To Mary Tyler Moore? (Part Four)


Naturally, these seminars would be open to the general public. Just imagine what a different impression Straight people would get of us! Instead of flamboyant revelers, they'd see serious people, concerned about their history, their future, their health, their families, their military veterans, and their access to societal institutions. They'd learn more about us than they ever could watching us flash bare nipples, pierced penises and tattooed butt cheeks! They'd discover that we're not carnival freaks or sex-obsessed anarchists. They'd come to know that we're life partners, fathers, mothers, children, grandparents, taxpayers, voters, soldiers and people of faith. They'd understand that Gay identity has depth.After a few years of these kinds of events, I think the public would begin to view us in an entirely different light. I believe this would result in them treating us in an entirely different way. I also believe an emphasis on education would radically change the way we think about ourselves! However, I'm aware that some LGBT folk have a concept of Gay identity that's already as radical as it can get, and nothing's ever going to change their minds.Sooner or later, there'll have to be a split in the Gay Rights movement! It's time to admit that there are some in our ranks who aren't committed to achieving equality and never will be. Just like our adversaries, they believe being Gay, Pansexual or Transsexual is all about sex, and the kinkier it is, the better! They use the movement as a vehicle for their pursuit of decadence! They scorn anything that even looks like mainstream values. They couldn't care less about marriage equality! Big friggin' deal about open service in the US military! Who needs legal adoption and parenting protections? It isn't even important to these "activists" that we be open and honest about our status. Closetedness is a just another way to be "queer", after all, and it's only about the kind of sex you enjoy, isn't it? Therefore, hiding your gender-neutral status in the closet should be respected like any other "lifestyle choice." Never mind that it's the antithesis of pride!In order to appear politically sophisticated, these jokers write up and sign supremely pompous documents like the "Beyond Same-Sex Marriage" Manifesto . . . . . radical Left-Wing screeds which absurdly pit marriage equality and other Gay Rights goals against the need to address societal problems like poverty, inadequate health care and exploitation of illegal immigrants! Self-identified "radical queers" mirror our Fundamentalist enemies by seeking to wall off LGBT folk from their citizenship rights and their faith! They tend to "combat" religious fascism by flashing the rude middle finger and shouting obscenities at Bible bigots (usually far from view and earshot).  As a group, they've got about as much maturity as a bunch of college frat boys running wild in a beer garden! The festival atmosphere of Pride parades is pretty much all they're suited for.We'll never be able to make that "queer" contingent disappear. However, we can reject their sex-intensive concept of Gay identity, their reactionary language, and their impotent politics!  We can snatch the helm of our movement out of their fumbling hands and steer it back in the right direction! The struggle that Stonewall launched will soon be forty years old. WTF are we waiting for? It's high time those of us who are serious about Civil Rights really got down to business. The first order of business should be eradicating ignorance about LGBT people! Education-oriented celebrations would be a great way to start. Now, I'm not so naïve as to think such a fundamental change co[...]

The First Holy Union (Part One)


JOHN 7: 24(Jesus Christ said) "Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment."Sprinkled throughout the New Testament Gospels are little bits of wisdom from the Savior. At first glance, they don't appear pertinent to a discussion of Gay identity, but with closer examination, you discover otherwise. The one referenced above is perhaps more pertinent than any other!In my essay titled "The Book Of Punishment," I explained why Levitican laws from the Old Testament don't apply to modern society. In summary, I used Scripture itself to prove that those restrictions only applied to the ancient Israelites. Regardless of time frame, a prohibition from God against "males lying with males as with females" could never have been addressed to homosexual men; if there's one thing I'm absolutely convinced of, it's that the Lord sees Lesbians and Gay men differently than the world sees us! In this new essay, I'll explain why I feel that way, and I'll also fulfill a promise I made a long time ago to change the way you think about so-called Gay marriage.I'm going to talk here about the mystery of the Beloved Disciple. Most mainstream Christian theologians accept the Biblical assertion that one of Jesus Christ's followers became especially dear to Him. Actually, Scripture indicates that there were several He had special regard for. Simon Peter and the brothers James and John formed an inner circle that the Savior often counseled privately with. Clearly, Simon Peter was particularly close to Him; this is obvious from their frequent exchanges. Peter wasn't the Beloved Disciple, though.Based on my reading of Scripture, I believe there were two people who deserved that title. One of them was female, and the other, male. The woman was undoubtedly Mary of Magdala, whom the Savior loved as a daughter and a protegée. The man is widely believed to have been the Apostle John. Only in the Gospel of John does Scripture speak explicitly of a beloved male disciple. That book's author and narrator claims that he himself is the disciple in question, and as its title indicates, ancient theologians attributed its authorship to John.However, modern scholars tend not to agree. They believe this Gospel was written by an acolyte of the Apostle John. Who might it have been? Some scholars point to Lazarus, the young man Jesus Christ raised from the dead. Consider this passage from the eleventh chapter of John:JOHN 11: 1 - 3Now a certain man was ill: (It was) Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. Mary was the one who anointed the Lord with perfume and wiped His feet with her hair. Her brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent a message to Jesus: "Lord, He whom you love is ill."Others point to the rich man spoken of in several New Testament Gospels whose great wealth threatened to become a stumbling block to his Divine salvation:MARK 10: 17 - 22As (Jesus Christ) was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before Him and asked Him: "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" . . . Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said, "You lack one thing. Go, sell what you own, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in Heaven. Then come, follow me." When he heard this, (the man) was shocked and went away grieving, for he had many possessions.Still others point to the mysterious young man who was present in the garden of Gethsemane when Jesus Christ was arrested by Roman soldiers:MARK 14: 51, 52A certain young man was following Him, wearing nothing but a linen cloth. They (the soldiers) caught hold of him, but he left the linen cloth and ran off naked.There are even scholars who assign the Beloved Disciple's identity to Juda[...]

The First Holy Union (Part Two)


After His Second Coming, the Savior will join in spiritual marriage with all the human souls which have been saved (AKA the new city of Jerusalem). Therefore, I contend that earthly marriage was impossible for Him. For Jesus Christ to wed would've been something akin to an adulterous act! What's more, it would've been at the very least inconsiderate to take a wife, knowing that her wedded bliss would soon be cut short by your crucifixion! So it's highly unlikely that the Christ married, but the Gospel of John suggests that He did fall in love. The object of His love was apparently male. We'll never know for sure if it was the Apostle John, or Lazarus, or another man whose identity was deliberately concealed. What we do know for sure is that the Messiah's bond with this man was so incredibly strong, He was moved to seal it as even as he writhed on the cross in His death throes! With his aunt and Mary Magdalene as witnesses, He performed an impromptu ceremony that was conceivably as close to marriage as He could have come:JOHN 19: 26, 27When Jesus saw His mother and the disciple whom He loved standing beside her, He said to His mother: "Woman, here is your son." Then He said to the disciple, "Here is your mother!" And from that hour, the disciple took her into his own home.What I've already said here will be objectionable to any Bible Fundamentalist who reads this blog. What I'm about to say will offend many liberal Christians, too: I don't believe marriage is truly possible between two Gay men or two Lesbians! I doubt that it's possible for a reason similar to the reason I believe Jesus Christ couldn't marry: We are already married!As crazy as it sounds, I'm persuaded that it's marriage, spiritual marriage, that makes us who we are. Here, again, is the amazing explanation from Gnostic scripture for how LGBT babies are created; I first quoted this passage in my essay titled "Why Gay People Exist, Part Three":GNOSTIC GOSPEL OF PHILIPUnclean spirits are male and female in form. Males have sex with souls that are female in form, and females cavort promiscuously with souls that are male in form. Souls cannot escape them if the spirits seize them, unless they receive the male or female power of the Bridegroom (Jesus Christ) and the Bride (Jerusalem). These are received from the mirrored Bridal Chamber (a special kind of ovum). When foolish females see a man by himself, they jump on him, fondle him and pollute him. Likewise, when foolish males see a beautiful woman by herself, they seduce and violate her . . . but when they see a husband and wife together, the females cannot make advances on the man, and the males cannot make advances on the woman . . . if the image (of God) and the angel are joined, none can dare to make advances on the male or the female.This passage isn't easy to interpret, but I believe God has enabled me to understand it: The reference to "a husband and wife together" refers to an androgynous soul. According to this text, heterosexual males and females can't seduce a human being who possesses this kind of soul, because he or she lacks heterosexual desire. What makes that happen? It's the "female power" that keeps the Gay man "faithful" to it, and the "male power" that likewise compels sexual fidelity in the Lesbian. In other words, there's only one heterosexual relationship that feels natural to homosexual men and women, and that's the one that exists inside of us. We're not even conscious of it, but it seems to manifest itself sometimes via the "butch" and "femme" mannerisms we're widely known for.So, from a Gnostic standpoint, homosexuality must be understood as a kind of wedded state! Heterosexual babi[...]

Their Worm Never Dies


Top Vatican officials, including the future Pope Benedict XVI, did not defrock a priest who molested as many as 200 deaf boys, even though several American bishops repeatedly warned them that failure to act on the matter could embarrass the Church, according to Church files newly unearthed as part of a lawsuit. The internal correspondence from bishops in Wisconsin directly to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the future Pope, shows that while Church officials tussled over whether the priest should be dismissed, their highest priority was protecting the Church from scandal. The documents emerge as Pope Benedict is facing other accusations that he and direct subordinates often did not alert civilian authorities or discipline priests involved in sexual abuse when he served as an archbishop in Germany and as the Vatican’s chief doctrinal enforcer.-Laurie Goodstein, The New York Times, 24 March 2010People are talking about a new YouTube video that satirizes the Catholic church's sex abuse scandal. In it, parents treat their children with a canned spray product called Priest-Off, designed to repel pedophile priests. A split screen comparison shows what happens when a child isn’t treated (he is cornered by a group of lustful clergymen) to what happens when he is (perv priests back off, like vampires fleeing from a crucifix). Thanks to Priest-Off, Catholic families live happily ever after . . . The End. The video is super campy, which means Gay web surfers are a sizable portion of its target audience. "LOL! Funniest thing I ever saw!" is a typical response to this dubious attempt at humor. Sorry, but I don't get the joke! Child predators are not pests; they're monsters! Priest-Off? How about Priest-In-Custody? The topics of pedophilia and pederasty don't tickle my funny bone, and they never will! Mothers who discover that their sons have been sexually abused do not smile, as the actress does in this video. I found the scene where pedophile priests pounce on the “untreated” boy especially disturbing. What profound moral deterioration our society suffers from, to ever consider child victimization a legitimate source of giggles and guffaws!I was equally disturbed by a telecast of "Larry King Live" last night that featured a panel discussion on the scandal. As often is the case, King overloaded a too-short segment with guests, effectively reducing the conversation to a series of sound bites. His panelists included several male abuse victims, two priests, and for that all-important celebrity appeal, Irish Catholic singer Sinéad O'Connor. Also on hand was an apologist named William Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. If you want to see the ugly face of Catholicism, look no farther than this reactionary bully!To a man, the abuse victims all called for the Pope's resignation; they believed that, in his previous job of Doctrinal Prefect, he had failed to adequately discipline pedophile priests. The consensus was that there may have been a cover-up on Joseph Ratzinger's part. Some years ago, Sinéad O'Connor sharply criticized the Pope during a notorious “Saturday Night Live” guest spot, but here she adopted a disappointing, overly conciliatory position. She seemed to buy into the idea that there was a conspiracy to smear the Pope, and naïvely recommended that all abusers come forward and turn themselves in. The priests also struck a conciliatory tone, suggesting that a Papal apology should suffice to diffuse the uproar. As if!Then it was Mr. Donohue's turn to speak. Almost shouting at the top of his lungs, he bellowed the Pope is being slandered several times. He d[...]

It's All About Veronica


I am a Left-leaning Independent voter, but I have little respect for the political Left. Strange as it may sound, I feel a stronger connection with the rural Conservative voter who predominates in my home state of Missouri. Mind you, I don't share his narrow-minded views, and I harbor no illusions about him: This voter can be extremely xenophobic, sexist, heterosexist, even racist, and he falls for just about any candidate who comes along waving a flag and brandishing a Bible!Yet, he is truly passionate about his moral values and the issues that affirm them: Small government, strong national defense, gun rights, frequent tax cuts, and blending of church and state, which dictates his feelings about Gay Rights and abortion. For sure, he's a stone reactionary, but he's for real! Politics is serious business for him. Seldom is he swayed by a photogenic face or a list of made-to-order promises. His loyalty is triggered by slavish fidelity to his core issues, and he’ll kick to the curb any Republican politician who doesn't honor them. He will make a litmus test of a candidate's voting record in order to justify or deny him support at the polls. Presidential nominee John McCain failed to pass the test, and as a result, he never secured the Republican base. The rural Conservative brings a passionate commitment to voting his beliefs! He has unquestionably changed the face of American government, and for that I respect him. By contrast, the urban Progressive voter (who lives in the suburbs as often as not) isn't terribly passionate about anything! He can make you believe otherwise, though, by the fired-up way he talks (Liberals love to give and listen to stirring speeches; that's one of the main reasons they supported Barack Obama). Yes, there are issues that he somewhat cares about: Unjust war, the environment, corporate greed, immigration reform, minority rights, women's rights, jobs, health care . . . but he will readily brush them all aside so that the "right" candidate can be elected. What makes a candidate the right one for an urban Liberal isn't his position on issues, but merely his opposition to whoever is on the Republican ticket! Often, the Democrat will be almost as Conservative as the Republican! Party affiliation matters most in the end, not ideology. It's almost a snob thing. My observation has been that urban Progressives look down their noses at Conservative politics; they think of the constituency as "dumbasses", while they dismiss the candidates as "idiots". Never mind that these idiots won the balance of national elections during the last century; the means used to get them elected, like concentration on a single issue, religion-based campaign appeals and unabashed patriotism, are too crude for a Progressive to even consider emulating. Liberals pride themselves on being politically sophisticated. Yes, indeedy! Wanna know just how sophisticated they are? They'll justify returning an ineffective or double-crossing politician to office over and over again by arguing "he's the lesser of two evils" and/or "sometimes, you just have to hold your nose and do what's practical". Political sophistication notwithstanding, urban Progressive voters are far more gullible than their Conservative counterparts are. Their elected officials hardly need to ply them with jingoistic rhetoric before sneaking off with a corporate lobbyist. Truth be told, they don't have to sneak! Democrat politicians cuckold their constituents fairly openly, confident that their incumbency is secure no matter how often they bed down with Right Wing special interests. When urban Progressives lea[...]

Africa Screams (Part One)


STEVEN and TIWONGE,JAILED for LOVING EACH OTHERWarning: This post contains sexually explicit material that may not be suitable for younger readers.MATTHEW 5: 11-12(Jesus Christ said) Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on My account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in Heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.Without a doubt, Uganda's pending law to impose the death penalty on homosexual citizens is the worst case of African heterosexism I've heard about lately! Which isn't to say there aren't plenty of other cases! Let me tell you about a few of them. Reuters News Service reported this disturbing incident on 29 December 2009:Two men who became the first Gay couple to marry in Malawi were arrested and charged with public indecency, the police said Tuesday. The men, Tiwonge Chimbalanga and Steven Monjeza, publicly wed in a symbolic, traditional ceremony on Saturday and were arrested Monday night. Homosexuality is banned in Malawi and carries a maximum prison sentence of 14 years.The Chimbalanga-Monjezas have since been vilified in the local press, humiliated in the courtroom, beaten up in jail, and threatened with violation of their body cavities. The police want to brutally rape them with anal probes in order to find "evidence" of homosexuality! Can you even imagine the degree of suffering these defenseless men are enduring? If they can survive the cruelties of the Malawian "justice" system, they'll still have to endure unbridled scorn from members of their own community. May God protect them both!A few days ago, this ugliness was not only repeated but amplified in Kenya, the ancestral homeland of US President Barack Obama. This report comes from the website has become the latest African nation to generate headlines with anti-Gay actions. After last year’s proposal by a Ugandan lawmaker to put some Gays (sic) to death, and the arrest of a same-sex couple in Malawi for allegedly celebrating their betrothal, Kenyan officials acted to prevent a planned celebration that reportedly would have marked the union of a Gay couple. The ceremony was to have been conducted at a private residence not far from Mombasa, a resort town, reported the BBC in a February 11th article. However, local authorities stepped in following reports of the purported Gay union. Said Chief Hussein Swaleh, "I was shocked." Added the Chief, "I won’t allow it."In a second incident, an anti-Gay mob organized by politicians and religious leaders in the Kenyan district of Kilifi chased three men, a supposed Gay couple and another individual, through the streets of the town of Mtwapa. Police had to intervene to save the men . . . the vigilante action, called Operation Gays Out, was spearheaded by Sheikh Hussein Ali and Bishop Laurence Chai (who said) "We thank God for saving this town from being turned to Sodom and Gomorrah . . . we may (have been) doomed had (these) criminals managed to conduct their evil exercise within our neighborhood" . . . Chai and Ali publicly called for the government to close any night spots catering to Gays (sic), and Ali swore further violence against (them), urging residents of Mtwapa to attack them."Operation Gays Out"? Politicians and preachers leading a mob? Calls for random violence against same-gender-loving Kenyans? What barbarity! Mtwapa sure sounds like a modern Sodom to me, what with predatory townspeople menacing the innocent! If I were Sheikh Ali or "Bishop" Chai, I wouldn't start breathing eas[...]

Africa Screams (Part Two)


STEVEN and TIWONGE,JAILED for LOVING EACH OTHERWarning: This post contains sexually explicit material that may not be suitable for younger readers.In the December 2009 issue of Positively Aware, an HIV treatment and health bi-monthly distributed to hospitals and health centers, columnist Jim Pickett reported on the Fifth International AIDS Society Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention. Held in July 2009, the conference took place in Cape Town, South Africa. One of the main challenges to HIV/AIDS prevention that Mr. Pickett identified was culturally-enforced invisibility of LGBT African people.Contracy to rampant, pernicious mischaracterizations, fueled by structural homophobia that negates the existence of Gay (men) and completely devalues their lives, Gay men and other MSM (men who love men) exist in Africa! Hello! Despite official HIV/AIDS estimates that mostly ignore this fact, these men constitute a substantial percentage of people living with HIV/AIDS on the continent . . .After contextualizing the challenges faced by African Gay (men), including criminilization, stigma, discrimination, human rights abuses, lack of access to prevention and care, and limited HIV surveillance, (a colleague) shared some numbers from Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, Mauritania, Côte d'Ivoire, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Namibia and Botswana. The data revealed high burdens of HIV among Gay (men) across all these countries, significantly higher than prevalence rates among males from the general population in each country save South Africa, Botswana and Namibia . . .Let's have a bit more context here. The aforementioned Live Journal article confirms what Rev. Macaulay has said about African law:. . . in many African nations, homosexuality is illegal; only South Africa has extended marriage equality to Gay and Lesbian families.In addition, consider this older report which was posted to on 15 May 2008:Jackson Irungu is . . . among a tiny minority of openly Gay men in Kenya who face a constant barrage of verbal abuse on the street and even occasional physical attacks. "We live in fear," says Irungu, "There is a perception that being Gay is wrong, so it is a bit tricky . . . when you live in Kenya." Irungu says a friend of his was beaten so badly outside a nightclub in Nairobi that he had to be taken to hospital. There is no way to corroborate such incidents with the police because homosexual Kenyans are just too afraid to report them. (Kenyan) law books help create the ambivalence. Two separate penal codes relate to the Gays in Kenya, and the archaic laws can lead to a 5-to-14 year jail term.So it's established that criminalization of their existence is a given for most of the subjects in this study group. Let's go back to Jim Pickett's conference report. He elaborated on African HIV statistics:. . . let's take a look at Kenya, where (my colleague) told us the prevalence rates among Gay (men) is 15.6% in contrast to 7.49% prevalence among (heterosexual) Kenyan men of reproductive age. This means that about one in six or seven Gay Kenyans are HIV-positive. How about Sudan? (Heterosexual) men of reproductive age represent 1.26% prevalence (and) Gay (men) 8.8% in that North African country. Malawi? 21.4% for Gay (men), 11.46% for (heterosexual) men of reproductive age. In Senegal, the prevalence of HIV among Gay (men) is 21 times higher than other men. In Nigeria, seven times higher. Pretty dismal, yes?Hell, yes! And from those news reports I cited, we know the intensity of heterosexism that exists in Kenya and Ma[...]

Nobody's Queer In Big Eden


Celebrating the 10th Anniversary of Big Eden The Best Gay Film Ever Made!Earlier this year, I mailed the following letter to Judith Martin, the etiquette columnist known as Miss Manners: Please make a public statement in support of respectful reference to LGBT Americans! I am a Gay Black man who lives in the Bible Belt, and I'm appalled by the derogatory nature of the language I increasingly see and hear in the media. On a number of cable TV shows (MSNBC's "Keith Olbermann" is one example), I've heard LGBT people called "tr*nnies", "homos" and "f*ggots" in a "comic" manner. Popular sex columnist Dan Savage routinely peppers his columns and TV interviews with "f*g" and "f*ggot". NPR's "Talk Of The Nation" once gave comedian Scott Thompson several uncensored minutes of airtime to perform a song called "F*ggots On Parade." The community radio hosts of a local Gay lifestyle and newsmagazine love to apply the word "queer" to everything Gay-related. Ironically, Gay media often contains the crudest language imaginable: I've seen magazine covers with lurid headlines ranging from Blood, Sweat And Queers to Roller Derby D*kes to Yeah! I'm A F*g. The last straw for me came when I went online to buy a family-friendly Gay film from, and saw a product description describing the movie's characters as "bashful queers". I've had conversations with a number of people about how offensive I find these labels. I could not get my message across to them. I was told that sexual slurs have been drained of their toxicity by popular usage, and they encouraged me to use them myself! One guy compared it to casual use of the n-word, and since I'm African-American, he took the infuriating liberty of using the n-word with me! I've been attacked for supposedly being "politically correct." I've been ridiculed as "thin-skinned" and "immature". In the worst exchange I had, I was told: "You're nothing but a damned queer who thinks he's better than the rest." Of course, this came from someone identifying himself as "queer."When LGBT Americans are forbidden the right to wed in thirty states; when we're banned from open service in the US military; when we're forbidden to join the Boy Scouts; when we can and often are excommunicated from church membership; when serious films about us still have trouble getting produced in Hollywood, and Gay actors remain closeted out of fear of stigmatization; when we still face imprisonment and/or execution in numerous countries; when LGBT children are still regularly bullied in school; and especially when hundreds of us are still assaulted and murdered in hate crime incidents, atrocities that are usually attended by screams of "f*ggot", "queer", "d*ke", etcetera, I hardly think the time is right to start normalizing hurtful, pejorative labels for sex and gender difference. I doubt the time will ever be right for that!I regret that the polite terms used to refer to LGBT folk have origins either in popular slang (Gay) or clinical texts (Transsexual). I understand the desire for "umbrella terms" that simplify discussion of people like me. However, the ugly, ignorant slurs now gaining currency are unsuitable! "Queer" is not interchangeable with Gay. Hate speech still hurts! Why don't they understand?I don't know if Miss Manners understood; I don't know if she ever read my letter.  However, ten years ago, a man named Thomas Bezucha understood perfectly. In 1999, Bezucha, a writer and director of independent films, decided to make a 1930s-style screwball comedy with Gay men as hi[...]

Proving Me Right (Part One)


I'm so glad that I didn't vote for Barack Obama last November! I can't even begin to tell you. Don't take that to mean I'm happy, though! I'm not happy, and I'm not gloating. There's no pleasure in being able to say I told you so!From the first time I heard him in a presidential debate, I didn't simply trust the man! I wasn't impressed by his Colgate smile. I wasn't bowled over by his wry sense of humor. His personal charisma didn't do much for me. I thought his much-praised speaking ability was overrated. I didn't give a damn about his best-selling autobiography! I didn't drink his Kool-Aid. I don't like friggin' Kool-Aid! I never forgot, as many others did, that Candidate Obama was a politician. I viewed his rosy promises through that crystal-clear lens. Yet, after he was elected, I hoped against hope that my fears about him were misguided (see my November 2008 post titled "Proving Me Wrong").I no longer have any hope to hope against. My fears have been realized! Where strong, moral leadership is concerned, Barack Obama gets a failing grade!More and more, Progressive Americans are having their eyes opened to his deficiencies. Progressive LGBT Americans in particular have been opening their eyes. Frankly, we've had no choice in the matter! During his campaign, Barack Obama pledged to be a "fierce advocate" for equality. Before he even set foot in the White House, he betrayed that pledge! Now he's broken it so many times, I've lost count. The activists at have kept a tally of his betrayals. Let me share part of their list with you; it's pretty shocking, so you might want to sit down! Our current President is guilty of:Asking a religious Right activist who claims to have been “cured” of his homosexuality (Donnie McClurkin) to headline campaign events in South Carolina; then letting the anti-Gay bigot spend half an hour on stage, haranguing Gays (sic) at the (campaign) event.Refusing for months to interview with LGBT newspapers during the campaign, while his opponent did (so) repeatedly.Inviting anti-Gay activist Rick Warren, who helped pass Prop 8 in California, to give the invocation at the Inaugural.Abolishing the LGBT Outreach position (on) the Democratic National Committee and never re-instating it.Refusing to re-establish the White House Office of LGBT Outreach and the White House LGBT Liaison (which was a Special Assistant to the President at one point).Continuing to discharge two Gay service members a day, even though he could stop it immediately by issuing a stop-loss order.Asking for a study on “whether” repealing DADT would hurt national security, rather than a study on how to repeal it, as promised.Deleting his Gay Civil Rights promise from the White House Web site.Changing his commitment to “repeal” Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, to “changing DADT in a sensible manner.”Repeatedly defending DOMA in court, even though he didn't have to.Comparing Gay relationships to incest and pedophilia in a Justice Department brief.Joking about Gay protesters (who were) upset about the DOMA brief.Refusing to provide health care benefits to the partners of Gay (government) employees, and then claiming that DOMA precludes it, when it does not.Refusing to meet with Gay legal groups to discuss how to provide such health benefits within the confines of DOMA.Showing visible discomfort when asked about Gay Civil Rights.Suggesting he won't get to (repealing) DADT, DOMA or ENDA until his second term, if ever.Refusing to suspend implemen[...]

Proving Me Right (Part Two)


It's no accident that President Obama invited Bible bigots Rick Warren and Joseph Lowery to pray over his inaugural ceremony. Contrary to what you've heard, those invitations had nothing to do with political savvy! It should be obvious by now that President Obama shares those preachers' doctrinal disdain for Gay people! The cliché is valid: Birds of a feather do flock together. The feathers on Obama, Warren and Lowery look the same to me, and that's not all: When I look at them, I see a trio of vultures for whom LGBT Civil Rights are nothing but a form of carrion! Citizenship protections: It's what's for dinner, y'all!In the past, I've written that support for Gay Rights should be, must be, a litmus test for leadership. I said if a politician is bad on equality issues, other aspects of his policy agenda will be bad, too. Obama has proven me right; just look at his actions in regard to the economy! Progressive journalist Naomi Klein, writing for The Huffington Post on 21 December 2009, laid out the evidence. She listed a trio of missed opportunities to reverse the downward economic slide that began under the Bush administration:Blown Opportunity Number 1: The Stimulus PackageWhen Obama came to office, he had a free hand and a blank check to design a spending package to stimulate the economy. He could have used that power to fashion what many were calling a "Green New Deal": to build the best public transit systems and smart (power) grids in the world. Instead, he experimented disastrously with reaching across the aisle to Republicans, low-balling the size of the stimulus, and blowing much of it on tax cuts. Sure, he spent some money on weatherization, but public transit was inexplicably short-changed while highways that perpetuate car culture won big.Blown Opportunity Number 2: The Auto BailoutsSpeaking of the car culture, when Obama took office he also found himself in charge of two of the Big Three automakers, and all of the emissions for which they are responsible. A visionary leader . . . would obviously have used that power to dramatically re-engineer the failing industry so that its factories could build the infrastructure of the Green economy the world desperately needs. Instead, Obama saw his role as uninspiring Down-sizer-in-Chief, leaving the fundamentals of the industry unchanged. Blown Opportunity Number 3: The Bank BailoutsObama, it's worth remembering, also came to office with the big banks on their knees; it took real effort not to nationalize them. Once again, if Obama had dared to use the power that was handed to him by history, he could have mandated the banks to provide the loans for factories to be retro-fitted and new Green infrastructure to be built. Instead, he declared that the government shouldn't tell the failed banks how to run their businesses. Green businesses report that it's harder than ever to get a loan.In a nutshell, then, George W. Bush's economic policies remain largely intact under the Obama administration. Guess what? So do George W. Bush's military policies, including troop surges and government contracts with war profiteers. So does funding of "faith-based" agencies that discriminate based on religious doctrine. So do "renditions", CIA abductions and transfers of war prisoners to countries that practice torture. So does Executive Branch eagerness to snuggle up with corporate lobbyists (officially a bipartisan habit now). So do those controversial "signing statements" Bush was so fond of, whic[...]

You Can't Go Halfway (Part One)


DR. JOHN SHELBY SPONGMy dearest friend, Dr. Lester Earl Blue, Jr, recently emailed me an essay he came across while Web surfing. It was penned by noted theologian John Shelby Spong, no doubt in response to the ongoing turmoil over Gay issues in his Episcopal denomination. Reading it, I got the impression that a volcano of emotion has long been stirring inside Dr. Spong. I think he let it simmer below the surface for years, but the time came when only expressing a portion of that rage wasn't enough! Now he's finally let the top blow off, and the lava that's gushing out has taken the form of searing, incisive words. Blazing hot words, hot enough to burn away ambiguity and confusion!That's the kind of natural phenomenon I both love to see and love to share with my blog patrons! Have you ever seen an exploding Christian? Are you ready to witness an eruption to rival Mount Saint-Helens? Then dare to approach the smoke-filled crater of a soul aflame with fury! Peer over the edge, and train your eyes on these key excerpts from Dr. Spong's Manifesto: The Time Has Come! It was originally posted to the Web on 15 October 2009, and the entire document can be viewed here.I have made a decision. I will no longer debate the issue of homosexuality in the church with anyone. I will no longer engage the Biblical ignorance that emanates from so many Right Wing Christians about how the Bible condemns homosexuality, as if that point of view still has any credibility. I will no longer discuss with them or listen to them tell me how homosexuality is "an abomination to God," about how homosexuality is a "chosen lifestyle," or about how, through prayer and "spiritual counseling", homosexual persons can be "cured." Those arguments are no longer worthy of my time or energy.I stopped spending time and energy on them many years ago! During the height of Anita Bryant-fueled anti-Gay hysteria, I quit my church in protest of the heterosexist sermons my pastor had begun preaching. Believe me, I've never regretted that decision!I will no longer (listen) to the thoughts of those who advocate "reparative therapy," as if homosexual persons are somehow broken and need to be repaired. I will no longer talk to those who believe that the unity of the Church can or should be achieved . . . at the expense of Gay and Lesbian people. I will no longer take the time to refute the unlearned and undocumentable claims of certain world religious leaders who call homosexuality "deviant."I wonder if the reparative therapy-tolerant staff of will take these words to heart? They should.I will no longer listen to that pious sentimentality that certain Christian leaders continue to employ, which suggests some version of that strange and overtly dishonest phrase . . . "We love the sinner but hate the sin." That statement is . . . nothing more than a self-serving lie designed to cover the fact that these people hate homosexual persons . . . but (they) know that hatred is incompatible with the Christ they claim to profess, so they adopt this face-saving and absolutely false statement.How long I've waited for someone of Dr. Spong's stature to make this all-too-true observation! He phrased it just right, too.I will no longer temper my understanding of truth in order to pretend that I have even a tiny smidgen of respect for the appalling negativity that continues to emanate from religious circles . . . the Church has for centuries conveniently perfumed[...]

You Can't Go Halfway (Part Two)


DR. JOHN SHELBY SPONGI see no way that ignorance and truth can be placed side by side, nor do I believe that evil is somehow less evil if the Bible is quoted to justify it.Whoa, now! There's a sentence worth repeating.I see no way that ignorance and truth can be placed side by side, nor do I believe that evil is somehow less evil if the Bible is quoted to justify it. I will dismiss as unworthy of any more of my attention the wild, false and uninformed opinions of such would-be religious leaders as Pat Robertson, James Dobson, Jerry Falwell, Jimmy Swaggart, Albert Mohler, and Robert Duncan. My country and my Church have both already spent too much time, energy and money trying to accommodate these backward points of view when they are no longer even tolerable.Say amen, somebody!I make these statements because it is time to move on. The battle is over. The victory has been won.Ah, if only that were true! I fear that the battle has only begun to engage. LGBT folk are vilified from the pulpit, banned from public and private institutions, cut off from constitutional protections, harassed at school and in the workplace, and randomly beaten and murdered, but there are worse things that could happen to us! I don’t accept the general consensus that a Nazi Germany could never rise again. The intensity of hatred for human beings who don't fit binary gender standards is plenty strong enough to trigger a new Holocaust somewhere in the world! I find the degree of LGBT persecution in Africa and the Caribbean particularly alarming; just look at the unrestrained transphobia recently directed at South African athlete Caster Semenya (see my essays titled "I Am Caster Semenya", Parts One and Two)!There is no reasonable doubt as to what the final outcome of this struggle will be. Homosexual people will be accepted as equal, full human beings, who have a legitimate claim on every right that both church and society have to offer any of us. Homosexual marriages will become legal, recognized by the state and pronounced Holy by the Church. "Don't ask/Don't tell" will be dismantled as the policy of our Armed Forces.God willing, these predictions will come to pass, and during my lifetime! Pardon me, though, if I don't hold my breath waiting for these happy events to occur under Barack Obama’s administration! We’ll need a chief executive with the moral clarity of a Harry Truman or Lyndon Johnson, and sadly, those qualities do not appear to exist within our current President.We will and we must learn that equality of citizenship is not something that should (ever) be submitted to a referendum. Equality under and before the law is a solemn promise conveyed to all our citizens in the Constitution itself. Can any of us imagine having a public referendum on whether slavery should continue, whether segregation should be dismantled, whether voting privileges should be offered to women? The time has come for politicians to . . . abandon that convenient shield of demanding a vote on the rights of full citizenship . . . they do not understand the difference between a constitutional democracy, which this nation has, and a "mobocracy," which this nation rejected when it adopted its Constitution. We do not put the Civil Rights of a minority to the vote of a plebiscite.Will someone please tell me how to get otherwise intelligent Gay activists like John Aravosis, Joe Sudbay and Evan Wolfson to grasp this basic trut[...]