Saturday, July 24, 2010

Via JMG: Sen. Harry Reid Prompts Standing Ovation For Dan Choi At Netroots Nation, Choi Presents Reid With His West Point Ring


"Sen. Harry Reid's opening remark at his keynote address at Netroots Nation recognized Lt. Dan Choi, who was sitting next to me in the front row. The entire room gave Choi a standing ovation. Later during the question and answer session, the moderator presented Reid with Choi's West Point ring. Reid promised to return the ring to Choi upon the official repeal of DADT, prompting Choi to leap to the stage and salute Sen. Reid (and also sending a couple of Secret Service men scrambling to protect Reid.)

The two then hugged on stage in a moment that will surely live on in LGBT activism history. It was a great moment. (Most of the queer contingent at Netroots had rushed to the tables at the front of the room immediately upon the opening of the doors, as we'd heard rumors that Choi might "do something.") The video below is by Good As You's Jeremy Hooper, who was further back in the room, so the audio is a bit low. That's me in the blue shirt up near where Choi jumps to the stage."

[Top three photos are mine, bottom photo by Pam Spaulding.]

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Via JMG: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Speaks About ENDA At Netroots Nation

Obviously referring to GetEQUAL's protests, Pelosi said, "I would target [politicians] in a positive way. This is America, show your appreciation to those that are with us." More about Pelosi's speech at LGBT POV.

(Video by Good As You's Jeremy Hooper.)

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Via JMG: Obama Addresses Netroots Nation

With a mention of DADT.

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reposted from Joe


By ThosPayne

St Sergius and St BacchusA Kiev art museum contains a curious icon from St. Catherine's Monastery on Mt. Sinai in Israel. It shows two robed Christian saints. Between them is a traditional Roman ‘pronubus’ (a best man), overseeing a wedding. The pronubus is Christ. The married couple are both men.

Is the icon suggesting that a gay "wedding" is being sanctified by Christ himself? The idea seems shocking. But the full answer comes from other early Christian sources about the two men featured in the icon, St. Sergius and St. Bacchus,2 two Roman soldiers who were Christian martyrs. These two officers in the Roman army incurred the anger of Emperor Maximian when they were exposed as ‘secret Christians’ by refusing to enter a pagan temple. Both were sent to Syria circa 303 CE where Bacchus is thought to have died while being flogged. Sergius survived torture but was later beheaded. Legend says that Bacchus appeared to the dying Sergius as an angel, telling him to be brave because they would soon be reunited in heaven.

While the pairing of saints, particularly in the early Christian church, was not unusual, the association of these two men was regarded as particularly intimate. Severus, the Patriarch of Antioch (512 - 518 CE) explained that, "we should not separate in speech they [Sergius and Bacchus] who were joined in life". This is not a case of simple "adelphopoiia." In the definitive 10th century account of their lives, St. Sergius is openly celebrated as the "sweet companion and lover" of St. Bacchus. Sergius and Bacchus's close relationship has led many modern scholars to believe they were lovers. But the most compelling evidence for this view is that the oldest text of their martyrology, written in New Testament Greek describes them as "erastai,” or "lovers". In other words, they were a male homosexual couple. Their orientation and relationship was not only acknowledged, but it was fully accepted and celebrated by the early Christian church, which was far more tolerant than it is today.

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