Tuesday, January 27, 2015

VIa JMG: UTAH: LDS Church Backs LGBT Rights In Return For Stiffer Religion Carve-Outs

Via Salt Lake City's Fox affiliate:
In at least one big and bruising culture-war battle, the Mormon church wants to call a partial truce. Convening a rare press conference on Tuesday at church headquarters in Salt Lake City, Mormon leaders pledged to support anti-discrimination laws for gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people, as long the laws also protect the rights of religious groups. In exchange, the Mormon church wants gay rights advocates — and the government — to back off. “When religious people are publicly intimidated, retaliated against, forced from employment or made to suffer personal loss because they have raised their voice in the public square, donated to a cause or participated in an election, our democracy is the loser,” said Elder Dallin Oaks, a member of the church’s Quorum of Twelve Apostles. “Such tactics are every bit as wrong as denying access to employment, housing or public services because of race or gender.”
At today's press conference Oaks cited Houston's subpoenaing of pastors as a recent example of Christians being oppressed. In 2009 the Mormon Church backed an LGBT rights ordinance in Salt Lake City and while they say they still oppose same-sex marriage, today's announcement is meant to indicate support for similar legislation elsewhere. With one condition.

UPDATE: Openly gay Utah state Sen. Jim Dabakis just sent us a statement.
"I am proud that the LDS Church has seen fit to lead the way in non-discrimination. As a religious institution, Mormons have had a long history of being the victims of discrimination and persecution. They understand more than most the value and strength of creating a civil society that judges people by the content of their character and their ability to do a job. Since serving as a Senator, and as the only LGBT member of the Utah legislature, I can say one of the joys of the job has been to meet and enjoy the company of LDS officials. I know that together, we can build a community that strongly protects religious organizations constitutional liberties and, in addition, creates a civil, respectful, nurturing culture where differences are honored and everyone feels welcome. Now, lets roll up our sleeves, get to work and pass a statewide Non-Discrimination Bill."
Dabakis is the co-founder of Equality Utah. Hours after same-sex marriage became legal there in December 2013, he married his husband in a ceremony officiated by Salt Lake City's mayor.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: ABC Greenlights Dan Savage Sitcom

ABC has approved the production of a sitcom pilot based the life of Dan Savage. Via the Hollywood Reporter:
The untitled Savage comedy is a single-camera semi-autobiographical entry based on the LGBT activist/boundary-pushing columnist's life. It centers on a picture-perfect family that is turned upside down when the youngest son comes out of the closet. What seems like the end of their idyllic life turns out to be the beginning of a bright new chapter when everyone stops pretending to be perfect and actually starts being real. Savage is responsible fororganizing the It Gets Better photo campaign following the passage of Prop. 8 and numerous other anti-gay legislation. Galavant, Trophy Wife and Don't Trust the B alum David Windsor and Casey Johnson will pen the script. Savage, Hypomania Content's Brian Pines and DiBonaventura Pictures Television's Dan McDermott will produce.
The wingnuts will totally lose their minds.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

JMG POLL: 7% Of All LGBTs Oppose Marriage Equality, 19% Of Gay Republicans Do Too

Via the Washington Post:
If you thought everyone in the LGBT community wanted gay marriage, you would be wrong. It's much more nuanced than that. A new chart from Pew, based on 2013 data, shows that 7 percent of LGBT Americans said they oppose same-sex marriage. And another 18 percent said they favor it, but that they didn't feel strongly. Perhaps most striking, 39 percent of the LGBT community said the marriage fight was taking focus off other issues of import to them. Opposition to gay marriage in the LGBT community, such as it exists, is driven by three groups: LGBT blacks, LGBT Republicans, and bisexual Americans. While 12 percent of the black LGBT community opposed gay marriage, nearly one in five (19 percent) Republicans did, too. Only 45 percent of LGBT Republicans said they strongly favored gay marriage -- the lowest of any group. Fifty-eight percent of LGBT blacks said they strongly favor it.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Flor do Dia - Flor del Día - Flower of the Day - 27/01/2015

“É preciso compreender o significado mais profundo da palavra “iniciação”, pois seu significado foi sendo distorcido ao longo do tempo. Iniciação é um compromisso com a divindade que te habita e que pulsa em tudo o que é vivo. É um compromisso com a Verdade, pois significa romper com as máscaras, e com o falso eu. Iniciação é um movimento em direção à entrega; um movimento em direção ao seu coração.”

“Es preciso comprender el significado más profundo de la palabra “iniciación”, pues su significado fue muy distorsionado a lo largo del tiempo. Iniciación es un compromiso con la divinidad que te habita y que pulsa en todo lo que está vivo. Es un compromiso con la Verdad, pues significa romper con las máscaras, y con el falso yo. Iniciación es un movimiento en dirección a la entrega; un movimiento en dirección a tu corazón.”

“It’s important to understand the deeper meaning of the word ‘initiation’, since its meaning has been distorted over time. Initiation is a commitment to the divinity that inhabits us and that pulsates in everything alive. It is a commitment to the truth, which means breaking away from our masks and the false self. Initiation is a movement towards surrender, a movement towards our heart.”

Via Daily Dharma:

Highest Kind of Happiness | January 27, 2015

Neither the coarse feeling of unpleasantness nor the agitated feeling of pleasure, equanimity, the Buddha said, is one of the highest kinds of happiness, beyond compare with mere pleasant feelings.

- Shaila Catherine, "Equanimity in Every Bite"

Via LGBTQ Baha'is and Allies / FB: