Posts tagged ‘LGBTQ’

November 4, 2010

What have I done?

by f

Remember that I had a brilliant series about gay teenagers that I absolutely had to share with all of you?

I had it all figured out. I was going to write emotionally and at length about the issue. There was so much for me to talk about, a trail of injustices to chronicle. And then… the world happened. The It Gets Better project has since skyrocketed — even President Obama made his own “It Gets Better” movie — throwing a million diverse experiences into the mix. There isn’t one great standard to which to these stories can be held. So I’m going to watch all of them.

Yes, you’re right. Each and every goddamn one of them.

I’ve seen around two hundred so far. At times they are tough to watch. I can’t believe that we tolerate this prejudice as a society. Talking about wanting gay students to commit suicide is almost acceptable. “I don’t want to be a homo,” is the last accepted bigoted phrase there is.

So after all of my writing and thinking and feeling and grasping, I’ve only found that the issues are more complex than I’d ever imagined. The recent ouster of judges from Iowa is further evidence of this — and a huge setback for gay rights in this country. Not since 1952, since the system was designed, have judges been voted out of power.

The House is in very Republican territory now. Republicans are not known for their powerful stance on gay rights. In fact, their powerful stance is an unequivocally negative one. If they must exist, they must remain like children — seen and not heard. This is the basis for countless legislation against gay marriage and in support of DADT. Laura Wood, our favorite housewife, sums it up best; she says what most Republicans say off camera (unless you’re Carl Paladino, and then you don’t care):

Our president is a bully who flagrantly violates his mandated role. The U.S. Constitution did not appoint him therapist to the nation’s children. The voters did not elect him to be dad. This is an outrageous assertion of power. He is a bully to parents in their own homes and a bully to children as well, exhibiting shocking insensitivity to the dilemmas and conflicts of adolescence and feeding them blatant lies. This president is a bully and a sentimental idiot all at once. He is an embarrassment to everything good this country represents.

What is everything good this country represents? Oh, you mean the exclusionary bullshit that we’ve had to apologize for over the course of two and a half centuries?

October 16, 2010

Religious Hatred Redux: Dan Savage is a Genius.

by f

 

Dan Savage

 

I’m sorry I’ve been away. Though my stomach problems have continued through the week, I think I’m starting to recover now. (Knock on wood — I was bad and had a limoncello mousse with graham cracker crust, though, so my progress remains to be seen.)

I’ll get back to the business of writing about things in earnest.

Before the hour strikes midnight, though, I want to share two important things with you.

Three days ago, Dan Savage answered a question from a Christian reader who claimed that although he condemned homosexuality, he did not support violence against gay teens. Savage’s response was swift, brutal, and awesome.

A question: Do you “support” atheist marriage? Interfaith marriage? Divorce and remarriage? All are legal, all go against Christian and/or traditional ideas about marriage, and yet there’s no “Christian” movement to deny marriage rights to atheists or people marrying outside their respective faiths or people divorcing and remarrying.

Why the hell not?

Sorry, L.R., but so long as you support the denial of marriage rights to same-sex couples, it’s clear that you do believe that some people—straight people—are “better or more worthy” than others.

It gets better from there. Savage also says that considering gay people as “unworthy of full civil equality” is equal to the claim that gays are unequal and therefore less worthy than straight people (countering an assertion made by the OP in the last line of his letter).

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October 14, 2010

It Gets Better

by d

Dan Savage is one of my favorite people. I never miss a Savage Love column.

He is a gay man, in a long-term relationship with his partner. They have a son. They are a happy, stable, loving family.

But their lives weren’t always so pleasant.

And that is why Dan has founded the It Gets Better Project, to reach out to young people who feel hopeless. It is for LGBTQ kids, but also for anyone who has suffered bullying or public shaming. The message is simple, and heartfelt. It gets better. You won’t always in middle or high school, you won’t always live with a family that doesn’t understand. The plea is wrought with emotion: Stick around, don’t give up on life before it can get better!

Below the cut are embedded videos, amazing videos submitted by people who want to tell kids that it gets better. Or, watch them all here: http://www.youtube.com/user/itgetsbetterproject

http://www.itgetsbetterproject.com/

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October 11, 2010

Clementi and the World, Part 1

by f

 

It takes a village to bully a child.

 

My experience with bullying,
programming notes,
or a prologue

Though I’ve wanted to talk about Tyler Clementi for a long time, I’m unsure at to how. This is my attempt to piece together some kind of truth. I will start by sharing my own high school experience. This has been very difficult for me to write. I hope it helps someone.

In an age of widespread connectivity it’s taken on a different form that what I’ve experienced. I’m very grateful for this. I can’t imagine coping with the mob.

Though I consider my experiences very negative on the whole, I am also not LGBT or Q. So I acknowledge that things could be much, much worse. But this is what I have to go on when I put myself in another’s shoes. I’m always stuck imagining myself a thousand times just before the jump from a precipice. Each time I’m horrified at how close I came to jumping.

Before I start, I need to make a confession.

I made it before (subtly) but I’ll make it again now. I am a Rutgers alum. I graduated a few years ago. My experience might be dated, but I still have connections to the campus so I speak from some experience. (I’m confident that this confession does not blow my cover. More than twenty nine thousand undergraduates attended Rutgers when I did, and the number is constantly growing.)

I can’t say what Tyler Clementi’s problems were before he went to Rutgers. We only know of his roommate Dharun Ravi and the moments that led to his suicide. But I can say that bullying is an epidemic. It’s killed at least five teens in the past month: Jaheem Herrera, Carl Walker-Hoover, Eric Mohat, Billy Lucas and Tyler Clementi. There are even more names, reported and unreported — but that I can even list one is a tragedy.

As Ellen DeGeneres points out, this is an epidemic.

For the past two weeks I’ve been doing the multiplication in my head. If it was bad for me, it was a thousand times worse for Jaheem, Carl, Eric, Billy, Tyler and the unnamed LGBTQ youth.

So I am writing the following for those of us who never experienced being bullied — do those people exist outside of Hollywood movies? — or those of us who have successfully repressed it enough to deny its impact. I’m writing this because the worst three words in the world are “Get Over It.” And after I’m done, you will know why fifteen thousand words are just not enough.

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September 27, 2010

Deliribint (n) – see Ann Coulter

by d

She's their Judy Garland!

bint (n) – a woman or girl, derived from the Arabic for “girl” or “daughter.” May be used derogatorily, but typically is more affectionate than slanderous.

delirium (n) – a temporary state of mind characterized by confusion, disorientation, anxiety, and hallucination. AKA madness.

deliribint (n) – a woman or girl who has gone so far off the deep-end her fellow females are anxiously awaiting the end to her screeching. Hypocrites who think their gender/peers should be oppressed in ways that prevent them from spreading this very message.

This is a term coined by my mother, who is an absolute genius. “Deliribint” sums up what I think of women who inspire in me an astonishment that, before now, went beyond words.

Deliribints are women who make your jaw drop down to your tits and hung there for minutes on end. They hold views that run completely counter to the way they themselves are living their lives, and insist that others should, too.

For instance, Anna of Domestic Felicity is arguably not a deliribint because she actually practices what she preaches. She is living the life of a homemaker, which she feels all women should do. But she does not climb on soapboxes to proclaim this. She blogs about it, but is not an activist.

Now, Ann Coulter, on the other hand, is the original deliribint. She has insisted that women are too dumb to vote. In fact, she is a raging misogynist.

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September 20, 2010

Psychological Aspects of Human Sexuality, Class Reflection

by feyruhan
Sexuality confusion

Image via Wikipedia

I expected a woman.  As a professor, that is, for my Psychological Aspects of Human Sexuality class.  My friend, who had taken the class at another college, a large university in fact, had told me exciting tales of learning and enlightenment and surprise, in which the professor was a grandmother who brought the text’s author’s twelve-year-old daughter to class once as part of an oral presentation.

I expected a proud, upfront, female professor who would tell us that we were about to embark on a wonderful journey that some of us may not be interested in, because we were studying the psychological aspects of human sexuality–not anatomy, nor the Kama Sutra.  A few students would leave, and we’d get going.

To be excessively blunt, I expected a white woman—a white woman would have had the socially-granted lee-way to explore and express a curiosity and openness about human sexuality that, I thought, a non-Caucasian woman, or moreover, a non-Caucasian man, would (unfortunately) not be so easily granted.  As it turns out, socially-granted permission be damned.  This professor may actually feel strongly enough about his beliefs about the importance of understanding the psychological aspects of human sexuality to openly explore, express, and teach about it—regardless of or in deliberate opposition to rules and guidelines that (I assume, possibly incorrectly, based on his skin tone and accent) he was raised to follow.  I think I’m going to like this professor.

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September 17, 2010

New CO Supreme Court Justice Is An Out Lesbian

by V
Monica Marquez

via Law Week

The newest person to ascend to the Colorado Supreme Court is an out lesbian. She is also a member of a minority ethnic group. None of these things stopped her from making it to the Supreme Court of Colorado, though, and I think we should all take a moment to take note of her achievement.

It isn’t easy for minorities to get ahead, but here Monica Maria Marquez has made it to such a prestigious position at a young age despite being a member of at least two minority groups. It’s a good lesson for all women to learn. No matter who you are, where you come from, or what obstacles you think are in your way or society would have you believe are impossible to overcome, you CAN overcome them and you can make it to whatever position you want to make it to. That is, after all, the American Dream. You can be whatever you want to be, everyone has a shot. It’s up to you to get yourself there despite any obstacles put in your path. Shattering that glass ceiling for women is not impossible, and we’re seeing that more than ever.

“Today I am pleased to select Deputy Attorney General Monica Marquez to serve on Colorado’s highest court,” Gov. Ritter said. “Monica is an analytical and independent thinker. She has a wealth of personal and professional experiences, and a deep reverence for the role our legal system plays in the everyday lives of Coloradans, and in the inter-relationship between our courts and public policy. She respects the rule of law, is conscientious and will bring an unbiased and just perspective to the court and all the cases that it hears.

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September 17, 2010

Riding the Arc for LGBT Rights

by V
Danielle Girdano

via AdaEveningNews.com

Danielle Girdano is a member of the LGBTQ community who will make history. She is riding the Spirit Prairie Trail, a 1400 mile bike ride which she began on August 9th, in Minneapolis, MN and will end in Dallas, TX tomorrow. That’s right, tomorrow. So, what’s so special about this feat? Well, it is special for two reasons. One is the fact that she’s doing it to raise awareness for LGBTQ rights and to raise awareness for teen and young adult suicide, especially among gay youth, which is the highest among any demographic worldwide.

“One of my main reasons for doing this is to draw awareness to the high teen and young adult suicide in the GLBT community.  It’s the highest (rate) of any demographic, worldwide,” Girdano said.  “My number one goal is awareness and to generate dialogue.”

The other is that this trail has only been completed by two men. She will not only be the third person to complete this ride, she will be the ONLY woman to have done so.

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August 30, 2010

DeRossi to become DeGeneres – Feminism at work?

by d

Portia DeRossi hasfiled paperwork to take on spouse Ellen DeGeneres‘ surname. Feminists have objected to the practice of wives changing their names to those of their husbands, for good reason. It can be read as another way in which a woman sublimates her own identity for that of her husband.

via INFphoto.com

But how does that change when the marriage consists of two people of the same gender? What occurs then? I’m sure a new norm will develop over time, but meanwhile, Portia DeRossi gets to make her own rules.

Lori Sokol has written a column at The Huffington Post about the issue:

According to a European study published earlier this year entitled, “What’s in a Name? 361.708 Euros: The Effects of Marital Name Change,” women who took their partner’s name appear to be different from women who kept their own name on a variety of demographics and beliefs. A woman who took her partner’s name or a hyphenated name, for example, was judged as more caring, more dependent, less intelligent, more emotional, less competent and less ambitious in comparison to a woman who kept her own name.

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July 13, 2010

Pretty Little Liars: Reality biting who?

by d

We have chemistry. Get it?

Subterfuge reviewsABC Family‘s Pretty Little Liars, in all its designed-for-marketability guilty-pleasure-ness. Season 1, episode 6, “Reality Bites Me.”

For some reason my TiVo didn’t catch last week’s PLL, so I just watched it online. Two things stuck out.

1) Spencer’s dad’s country club still operates like it might have in the 1950s.

I spent a lot of nights watching Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie on Nick at Night, and a common theme was the Boss Is Coming To Dinner plot. Well, that same ‘Woman, perform in front of clients so I can get a promotion!’ attitude is still going strong.

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