As many regular readers know, I’m an atheist; therefore, when I say this, please don’t take it lightly. It was after much contemplation that I decided to go public with this very personal moment in my life. Tonight, I spent many hours in the kitchen working on making some candy. It’s a long process and messy – so the clean up often takes as long as the making. Thereafter, I was a bit tired and stepped outside for some fresh air. I began thinking hard about things in the world – the economy, marriage equality, the criminal trial against the cop that beat Duanna Johnson, and other things relevant.
Although it is unlikely that the mainstream Assembly of God church will change their view that LGBT people are damned to hell and therefore, not worthy of civil equality (let’s face it, that’s the argument, plan and simple), one church, the Highland Assembly of God near Denver, CO, has opened its doors to openly gay and lesbian attendees. But when Pastor Mark Tidd proclaimed the church a welcoming place, he lost more than just a few members of the church.
But Tidd isn’t phased by the protests from the mainstream Assembly of God church against his inclusive ideas.
How many members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints does it take to make a movement? Apparently, the answer is 482, which at the time of this post is the number of signors to “A Plea for Reconciliation” from ldsapology.org. The group consists of LDS members, former members and others who believe in the equal value of every soul regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation or worldly condition. The Petition for Reconciliation begins:
“We the undersigned, in the spirit of love and peace, earnestly seek to create a climate for reconciliation between the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and gays and lesbians who have been affected by the policies, practices and politics of the Church.”
Marlin used to be a Church of Christ pulpit minister. Now, he’s an out and proud gay man. He left the pulpit, in effect, to “come out” of the closet he had been hiding in for 42 years. Marlin and I discussed the coming out process, he’s preaching about homosexuality, the effect of his coming out on his faith, conversion therapy/left handedness and religious arguments against homosexuality.
In the fight for equal rights for LGBT folks, gay activists are often confronted with religious groups who are anti-gay. Some of these groups are very vocal and have also poured a lot of money into convincing legislators and everyday citizens that our world will be destroyed if we give equal rights to gay people.
Obviously, I don’t believe this or I wouldn’t be here blogging on a gay man’s website. But it does raise the question: Are all religious groups like this?
I haven’t done a “Stupid Things People Say About Gays” in a while. Lots has been happening, but there’s certainly no shortage of stupid things people are saying. Here’s the latest from the AFA (American [heterosexual only] Family Association):
Congress is set to give legally protected status to 30 sexual orientations, including incest. Because of pressure from homosexual groups, Congress has refused to define what is meant by sexual orientation in H.R. 1913, the “Hate Crimes” bill. This means that the 30 different sexual orientations will be federally protected classes.
According to Mike (name changed to protect the innocent), a 17 year old senior at Grandfield High School, Ms. Taylor had been teaching The Laramie Project for about a month without incident. In fact, prior to teaching the story, Ms. Taylor was required to obtain approval for the play, and approval was given.
Benny & Rafi Fine (http://www.TheFineBrothers.com), one of the most popular internet filmmakers of all time, have released the first of five episodes in a web series against Proposition 8, which overturned same sex couple’s marriage rights and is currently back in the California courts. The series, entitled “Prop 8: The Web Series”, puts an irreverent comedic spin on the controversial proposition. Each episode presents various rights from the California Constitution, and presents a “What if?” scenario of what it would be like if those rights were taken away. Known for their sometimes controversial brand of satire, the Fine Brothers hold nothing back in making a bold statement for equality for all.
I’ve been trying to find a way to infuse truth into the statement, “Marijuana Cures Homosexuality.” The problem is, I haven’t hired the Anti-Gay Agenda’s advertising firm. What is it about their rhetoric that makes statements like, “homosexuals are the biggest threat to America” (uttered by Chris Buttars) so believable? Finally, I figured it out. God makes it believable.
Three men, two brothers and a cousin, shouted anti-gay slurs at patrons of Robert’s Lafitte and pelted them with rocks. One man, Marc Bosaw, required 12 staples to close the wounds. Another man was hit in the jaw by a rock.