Thursday, October 7, 2010
Citing the recent spate of suicides among LGBT youth, the "ex-gays" at Exodus International announced yesterday that they were ending their opposition to the Day Of Silence, an annual student-led protest of the bullying of queer kids.
"All the recent attention to bullying helped us realize that we need to equip kids to live out biblical tolerance and grace while treating their neighbors as they'd like to be treated, whether they agree with them or not," said Alan Chambers, President of Exodus International, the group that sponsored the event this year. Called the Day of Truth, the annual April event has been pushed by influential conservative Christian groups as a way to counter to the annual Day of Silence, an event promoted by gay rights advocates to highlight threats against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. The Day of Truth, held on the same day as the Day of Silence, "was established to counter the promotion of homosexual behavior and to express an opposing viewpoint from a Christian perspective," according to a manual for this year's event published by Exodus International.Focus On The Family said yesterday that they would continue to fight the Day Of Silence.
"Without question, Day of Truth is a loving and redemptive way students of faith can express their views positively in response to GLSEN's Day of Silence which only presents one point of view," Candi Cushman, education analyst for Focus on the Family, said in a statement. "In contrast to the whole idea of 'silence,' Day of Truth has encouraged students to exercise their free speech rights and have an open dialogue while respectfully listening to others," Cushman said.The Christianist-led Day Of Truth was created by the anti-gay Alliance Defense Fund, who handed over media responsibilities for the day to Exodus International earlier this year.
Labels: bullying, Day Of Silence, Exodus International, Focus On The Family, LGBT youth, religion, suicide
"The fire department did the right and Christian thing. The right thing, by the way, is also the Christian thing, because there can be no difference between the two. The right thing to do will always be the Christian thing to do, and the Christian thing to do will always be the right thing to do. If I somehow think the right thing to do is not the Christian thing to do, then I am either confused about what is right or confused about Christianity, or both.
"In this case, critics of the fire department are confused both about right and wrong and about Christianity. And it is because they have fallen prey to a weakened, feminized version of Christianity that is only about softer virtues such as compassion and not in any part about the muscular Christian virtues of individual responsibility and accountability." - American Family Association radio host Bryan Fischer on the Tennessee fire department that watched a family's house burn to the ground because they had not paid the annual $75 fire protection fee.
(Via - Right Wing Watch)
"I dream of a day where every gay youth in our country will have access to safe spaces, where no gay kid will live more than 100 miles from a space where LGBT youth can go to find community and support. But the creation of these life-saving spaces will require the passionate commitment and attention of the adult LGBT community. We need to pay attention to what is available to teens in our local communities. We need to raise funds and resources to support these spaces, and be aggressive in advocating that our tax dollars be used to support spaces where our teens receive the support they need.
"In the last eighteen months, in a city with as large an LGBT population as New York City, the Ali Forney Center lost funding for its emergency shelter, Green Chimney's lost funding for its foster care program, and Hetrick Martin and the LGBT Center lost funding for their after-school youth programs. Our youth need an adult community that is so committed to their welfare that such cuts to lifesaving services for LGBT teens could not occur without a tremendous outcry from our community.
"Too many of our youth are under attack in their homes, schools and communities. Homophobia creates environments that are deadly to our youth. We need to recognize the depth of this crisis and see the protection of our youth as a core responsibility of our movement. We need to build a support system that will save their lives." - Ali Forney Center executive director Carl Siciliano, in a response to the national epidemic of gay teen suicides.
Read Siciliano's four step program for protecting LGBT youth.
Dear Dr. Orey:
Thank you for writing to me regarding the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA). I appreciate hearing from you, and I share your strong support for this bill.
I am proud to be an original co-sponsor of the UAFA, which Senator Patrick Leahy introduced in the Senate as S.424 on February 12, 2009. This bill would amend immigration law to extend the same benefits to permanent partners as are currently afforded legally married couples under the Immigration and Naturalization Act. Americans in same-sex relationships would thereby be able to sponsor their partners for legal residency in the United States.
As you know, only opposite-sex couples are currently afforded the ability to sponsor their partners for immigration visas. This discriminatory practice has torn apart many binational families and denied American citizens equal opportunity under the law. The UAFA would correct this by adding "or permanent partner" to sections of the Immigration and Naturalization Act that apply to legally married couples.
Again, thank you for writing to me. Be assured that I am committed to a fair and just immigration policy, and that I will continue to fight for equal rights for all Americans.
United States Senator