Thursday, August 6, 2015

Via JMG: More Corporate Support For Equality Act

From the Human Rights Campaign:
Four new major American companies have become the latest to endorse the Equality Act, federal legislation that would establish full, federal equality for all LGBT Americans. In doing so, these leading companies - IBM, Oracle, Orbitz, and Symantec - made clear that they believe all LGBT Americans should have the protections from discrimination in federal law that they deserve. They join American Airlines, Apple, The Dow Chemical Company, Facebook, General Mills, Google, Levi Strauss & Co., Microsoft, and Nike as part of a national business coalition supporting comprehensive, federal LGBT non-discrimination protections. Additionally, Hewlett-Packard in Fortune recently announced its support for the Equality Act.

STATEMENT BY IBM: “IBM’s workplace culture is built on the principles of non-discrimination and equal opportunity for all. We established a corporate policy on equal opportunity more than a decade before the Civil Rights Act. We championed an industry-leading policy of non-discrimination based on sexual orientation over 30 years ago, and expanded it in 2002 to cover gender identity and expression. IBM is proud to support the Equality Act and maintains our steadfast support for all employees to experience equality in the workplace."

STATEMENT BY ORBITZ: “At Orbitz we’ve been advocates of equality and inclusion since our founding in 2001. Our support for the Equality Act is consistent with our other actions, such as signing the amicus brief calling on the Supreme Court to find gay marriage bans unconstitutional.”

STATEMENT BY SYMANTEC: “At Symantec, we are proud to support full and equal rights for the LGBT community. We believe having a diversity of perspectives ensures we make better business decisions and the products and services we offer meet the needs of the broad spectrum of people we serve worldwide, which is why we couldn’t be more proud to support the expansion of legal protections. We unequivocally support the Equality Act – for the future of our business and society.”
As I've mentioned before, the Equality Act will see little traction in the current GOP-dominated Congress, but this early groundwork is critical to what most consider to be the "heaviest lift" in our movement's history.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

WELL-STRUNG - Blank Space (feat. Johann Sebastian Bach)

The Real Queens and Kings of Stonewall

HRC & Jim Obergefell Ask Candidates to Defend Marriages of Same Sex Couples Across The Nation

Via Huffington Post: Want to Know if Being Gay Is a Choice? Let Me Tell You the Answer

Last night when debating equal marriage someone asked on Facebook "What is it that the LGBT don't have?" So I decided to put together a comprehensive little list for those who are 'getting tired of all this equality sh*t' as they have put it.

Until I can hold my partner's hand in the street of the city that I live in, pay taxes in and work in and not be told that I'm a faggot, that I'm going to get my head kicked in or that I'm going to die of AIDS (as my boyfriend and I were told on Saturday) then we don't have everything that those people keep telling us we already have.

Until I can walk out the door on a night out and not hear that little voice in my head tell me that I might look too gay, that I might want to not hold my boyfriend's hand in certain bars, that I should probably not wear that flamboyant t-shirt, that maybe I should tone it down in case a guy gets offended by my gayness and decides to crack a bottle over my head. Until I can be sure that I don't need to 'straighten up' when I get in the back of a taxi, talk to someone new at work, go into a non-gay bar or even talk on the phone on the bus then we don't have everything that those people keep telling us we already have.

Until I can turn down an invite in work to donate blood at the blood drive and not have to out myself to random strangers in the office because unlike the rest of the UK sexually active gay men cannot donate blood in Northern Ireland. Until I can walk into a blood bank and not have to lie about who I am in order to donate blood...Until I can walk into a blood bank and not feel like I am dirty, disgusting, shameful and a constant reminder of a time when gay men and AIDS shared the headlines then then we don't have everything that those people keep telling us we already have.

Until I can say the word marriage when talking to my gay friends who are engaged and not follow it up with "well you know, not a real marriage" and accidentally remind us all that despite being law abiding, tax paying citizens that we still don't have the right to marry the person we love and spend the rest of our lives together in Northern Ireland then we don't have everything that those people keep telling us we already have.

Until I can look at the gay news section of BBC and not read about another trans young person that has taken their own life because their church, their family and their teachers told them they were unnatural or sick or until I no longer have to read about the latest young gay man that has been beaten to death, stoned to death or locked up because they sent a text message to the guy they crushed on or because they just wanted to be happy and treated as a human being and not a walking sex act, pervert or something to be pushed away until they feel that they can't come back then we don't have everything that those people keep telling us we already have.

Yes I am angry. And you should be too. This is the life we have to live day in and day out as LGBT people. You think it's a choice? Read back over what I have written and ask yourself why anyone would choose this.