wlotus: (Eyes Wide Open)
LGBT and suspected LGBT young people have been completing suicide in astounding numbers in the past few weeks. They were driven to that extreme step after being systematically bullied, humiliated, and assaulted by their peers. Where did their peers learn it was okay to bully people based on their (actual or perceived) sexual orientation? There are a few answers to that question.

They learned it from you family members and friends of family they heard mocking LGBT people.

They learned it from you ministers who claim being LGBT is "sinful" or "an abomination".

They learned it from you politicians and community organizers who successfully pass discriminatory legislation that denies same-sex couples the right to legally marry.

They learned it from you federal legislators who do not recognize sexual orientation as a protected status in laws against hate crimes.

They learned it from you military people who force LGBT women and men to choose between openly acknowledging the person they love and serving and protecting the country they love.

You may not mean for your participation in any of these activities to be taken as a license to humiliate, assault, and murder LGBT people. You may say you do not have a problem with the LGBT person as a fellow human being, just with their sexual orientation being "sinful", "an abomination", or "unnatural". But the kids who bullied, humiliated, and assaulted their peers are not able to make that distinction. They hear you say those things, pass those laws, and preach those sermons, and they feel validated in bullying, humiliating, and assaulting whatever peers they perceive as LGBT. In their minds, if who the LGBT person is warrants your words and actions, who the LGBT person is warrants their abuse. They know their behavior is nothing more than the physical manifestation of your words and laws.

Why don't you?

Those mocking statements, those sermons, those laws, those federal silences all have nurtured an environment where LGBT youth are not safe to live their lives in peace and with all of the respect due to a fellow human being.

So, what are you going to do to put to rest the monster you created?

I'll tell you what I've done. Because, I am ashamed to say, I helped create that monster in years past, too.

I repented of the many times in my youth when I participated in mocking conversations about my fellow human beings who were or were thought to be LGBT.

I no longer affiliate myself with organizations, religious or otherwise, that are not open and affirming to all people, regardless of their sexual orientation.

I support marriage equality for same-sex couples.

I support the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell, so all military personnel and their families can have their humanity AND their dedication to our country acknowledged and respected.

I respectfully speak up when I hear people mock and use slurs in reference to LGBT people.

Whenever possible, I support organizations such as GLSEN: the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (www.glsen.org), to affect positive change in schools.

Your turn.
wlotus: (Eyes Wide Open)
Bullying in the workplace is an ongoing problem America has failed to address, which puts us 20 years behind some European countries on the issue. Right now workplace bullying is, in most cases, completely LEGAL in America. We need to work to change that fact. The Workplace Bullying Institute is promoting legislation that will bring about that change.



I need to keep abreast of this issue in New York State and do what I can to help get this legislation passed. I am grateful I have not encountered bullying in my current workplace, but I have encountered it in the past. I wish I had known then what I am learning now from reading The Bully at Work: What You Can Do to Stop the Hurt and Reclaim Your Dignity on the Job, a book I bought while dealing with a toxic workplace that actively protected bullies. I would have gotten out much, much sooner than I did.
wlotus: (Headache)
CNN reports Arizona's economy is taking a massive hit, now that they've chased out many illegal immigrants. Some lawmakers even want it both ways, now: they want the people to do the work and pay the taxes, but they don't want to extend legal citizenship and the ability to bring family. I am having trouble seeing past the flaming hypocrisy to have sympathy for Arizona's economic plight.

I guess the immigrants aren't stealing jobs from Americans, after all, eh?


wlotus: (Fallen Angel)
Whenever I listen to Americans talk about their fellow human beings as "those people who come here from other countries and take jobs from American citizens" I feel dirty. I want to validate their frustration and anger at not being able to find a job, at being passed over for raises and promotions, or at being looked down upon by some of the immigrants they have encountered. They have that mentality because of their very real experiences; they didn't wake up one morning and randomly say, "I would like to be a xenophobe." But that "Us versus Them" mentality that leads them to say, "Go back to where you came from!" makes me sad.
wlotus: (Rainbow Heart)
From Queerunity on Twitter: "Demand that Lesbian Student be Allowed to go to Prom"

Date: 13 March 2010
Subject: Teaching Our Children Hatred


By canceling the senior prom rather than opening it to same-sex couples, you have taught our young people a valuable lesson. You have taught them they can use whatever power and authority they gain as they enter adulthood to practice hatred towards those who are different from them.

Is that the lesson you want these young people to take away from their senior year?

On the other hand, you can choose to teach them that sometimes people in authority make mistakes, own up to their mistakes, and reverse their mistakes. The ball is in your court.

Sincerely,
[livejournal.com profile] wlotus
wlotus: (USA Flag)
On Tuesday, a military board told Lt. Dan Choi -- an Iraq War veteran and Arabic linguist -- that it was recommending his discharge from the Army for "moral and professional dereliction" under the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.

Despite this setback, Lt. Choi is not giving up. Dan is taking his fight to repeal the discriminatory "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy to Congress and he needs your help as soon as possible.

I just signed the letter below to Speaker Nancy Pelosi that Lt. Choi is going to personally deliver to her. The letter is being launched on Lt. Choi's behalf by the Courage Campaign, Knights Out and the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network.

We need Speaker Pelosi to take leadership now and speak out publicly in favor of current legislation in Congress that would repeal the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.

Will you join me in signing Lt. Choi's letter and urge your friends to do the same? Just click on the link below to add your name:

http://www.couragecampaign.org/RepealDADT

Thanks!
wlotus: (A Woman's Place)
It seems David Letterman and CBS are beginning to pay a price in the market of public opinion for his "jokes" about Governor Palin looking like a "slutty flight attendant" and her underage daughter being raped by Alex Rodriguez.
*******
Hello New York Area PUMAs! It's time to stand up for women's rights and take action to let the MSM and their sponsors know that jokes at women's and girls' expense will not be tolerated!

FIRE DAVID LETTERMAN RALLY

When: Tuesday, June 16, 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm.

Where: Outside the Ed Sullivan Theater, 1697 Broadway @ 53rd and 54th Streets, New York City.

Bring your own signs (be creative but PG rated!)

Keep telling your friends on the internet and in person to sign the letter to CBS asking them to fire David Letterman at http://www.firedavidletterman.com.

Progress is being made:

1. CBS has received so many negative comments about Letterman they have shut down the comments section of their website.

2. A leading New York State Legislator, Brian Kolb, publicly called for CBS to fire Letterman.

We hope you can make it. Some of us will join in after work. Let's turn it out!
wlotus: (Happy)


The funniest part is that SHE'S RIGHT!
wlotus: (Rainbow Alert)
Not safe for work or homophobes. :-)

wlotus: (Rainbow Cross)
wlotus: (Jesus Called)
The new archbishop of New York says he will oppose Governor Patterson's same-sex marriage bill. I understand and respect the fact that the Roman Catholic church does not support same-sex relationships. I am not asking them to change their stance. Neither does the marriage bill. The Roman Catholic church would not be forced to perform same-sex marriages. All the bill means is that the state would give same-sex couples marriage licenses and would consider such couples married in the eyes of the law, with all of the legal protections offered any other married couple. It wouldn't affect the Roman Catholic church in any way. So why the opposition?

It's interesting that while those of us who support same-sex marriage are quite happy to allow those who oppose it to peacefully live out their private lives according to their convictions--live and let live--those who oppose it intend for the rest of the world to live under the weight of laws that support their opposition. That doesn't seem at all "righteous" to me.
wlotus: (Rainbow Alert)
I tip my hat to [livejournal.com profile] balmofgilead for posting this in her blog.

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