I am Proud to say, “I Vote With People of Color, I Vote with LGBT/T People”

I live in a northeast Dallas suburb.  The development where we live is racially and ethnically mixed, struggling to stay in the middle class or what is left of the middle class.

Tina and I are progressive Democrats.

We have a vested interest in LGBT/T equality and human rights.

We are also strong supporters of anti-discrimination laws that protect all.

We support Women’s Rights, including access to abortion and contraception as well as anti-discrimination measures.

We are environmentalists opposed to  tar sands oil extraction, mountain topping and whale murdering.

I voted for Obama in 2008 after voting for Hillary in the primary.

I am disappointed that he hasn’t been able to do more.

Health Care Reform was a baby step in the right direction.

I wish he would end most measures put in place by Bush that are supposed to make us more secure.

I wish we were already out of Afghanistan.

But I’m supporting him and voting for him again this fall.

Yesterday we went to vote in the Texas primary.

In the 1960s I was about five years too young to have taken part in the Civil Rights Movement.  My big movement was the anti-war in Vietnam Movement.

Yesterday we had a Primary Election Run-off here in Texas.

The Republi-Nazis were trying to figure out which candidate was the craziest and hated people of color plus Teh Gayz, the most.

We went to vote and it was like a journey back in time.  The right wing crazy Republi-Nazis officiating their primary were all lily white and folks officiating the Democratic primary were all African American.

I’ve rarely felt more pride in voting than yesterday when I walked up to those wonderful folks who volunteered to officiate the election and voted Democratic.

While we were voting another old white woman came in and also voted Democratic.

When one looks at all the things that can make one an oppressed minority one finds there are far more people who are part of one or several minority categories than there are privileged white people.

The most foolish thing a member of a minority group can do is vote Republican.

Not voting is the same thing as voting Republican, this is why the Republicans are trying to suppress the vote with voter ID laws, and the purging of voter rolls.

Obama and the Democrats are far from perfect, one might argue they barely measure up to good enough, but there is much to be said regarding voting for the lesser of two evils.  Each time you do that you move closer to where you want your government and the people who represent you to be.

Every anti-discrimination law or ruling moves everyone closer to equality and respect for all.

Like a wind blown grain of sand or water continual small steps move us closer to the goal of freedom, equality and human rights for all.

Yeah…  I’m proud to be a Democrat, I wish they were further left but that is up to you and me moving them further left.

I am also proud to say I vote with people of color, LGBT/T people and other progressives.

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‘Matrix’ Director Reveals Transition To Lana Wachowski

This is kind of one of those revelations many of us have known about for several years.

From Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/matrix-director-sex-change-larry-wachowski_n_1720944.html

By
07/30/2012

The director of “The Matrix” and the highly-anticipated film “Cloud Atlas” has become the first major Hollywood director to publicly come out as transgender.

Lana Wachowski has revealed her transition while promoting her new film, the New York Post reported. Though the Post claims she has undergone gender reassignment surgery, this appears to be unverified.

Lana, formerly known as Larry, has been transitioning from a man to a woman for years now, the Post also reported. This new clip for “Cloud Atlas,” starring Tom Hanks and Halle Berry, appears to her first public appearance since transitioning.

In the trailer, Lana introduces the film with her brother, Andy Wachowski, and director Tom Tykwer.

“Hi, I’m Lana,” she says with her hair styled in pink dreadlocks.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/matrix-director-sex-change-larry-wachowski_n_1720944.html

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Start Early: Addressing Gender-Based Bullying in Elementary School

From Huffington Post:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/elizabethe-c-payne/start-early-addressing-ge_b_1715644.html?utm_hp_ref=gay-voices


07/31/2012

Kids learn the gender rules very young, and elementary schools are key sites for the construction and affirmation of culturally patterned gender relations. They learn that biological sex, gender, and sexuality are interrelated pieces of who we are and how we see the world, and they quickly learn that there are “normal,” expected ways for these three things to fit together and “normal” ways to present themselves as boys and girls. Education sociologist Deborah Youdell argues that this relationship between sex, gender, and sexuality works to create possibilities and set limitations on who children are “allowed” to be in schools. These rules of social interaction, expression, and identity are intertwined with the traditional gender roles associated with heterosexuality — even in the Pre-K and early elementary years.

It has become all but impossible to find gender-neutral spaces or toys in most stores. The girl aisles are the pink aisles, and toys there are miniature pink plastic replicas of cooking utensils, cleaning equipment, home décor, fashion (including bridal wear), child-rearing supplies, and dolls. On the boy aisle, one is likely to find trucks, guns and cars, and toys associated with “masculine” vocations, like fireman or superhero. There are no small blue plastic vacuum cleaners, ironing boards or high chairs on the “boy” aisle, no baby dolls that pee and cry. You may perhaps find a brightly colored lawn mower. This division in toys and the expected accompanying play mirror gender roles associated with “traditional” (1950s) heterosexual marriage — women cook, clean and raise babies, men work away from the home and mow the lawn. Women are primarily in the home. Men are outside the home, making an impact on their environments–through building, bulldozing, fighting, or saving the world with their superhero feats. Together in couples, men and women get it all done. So, though childhood play is usually gender segregated, it is often based upon heterosexual coupling and normative gender roles.

The cultural assumption that girls and boys are essentially and naturally different also underlies the organization and pedagogy of many early years classrooms. There may be classroom activity centers such as a “building block corner,” kitchen or dress-up area. Children playing in these areas may be given clear gender appropriate messages from both teachers and peers: “Boys don’t wear dresses,” “Girls don’t like trucks.” Class activities often require “girls vs. boys” competitions, and many daily organizational tasks, like lining up to go to lunch, rely on gender difference: “Girls line up here, boys line up there.” These iterations of the gender binary visibly divide and categorize all students in the classroom into two distinct gender groups. Nothing in between.

Continue reading at:   http://www.huffingtonpost.com/elizabethe-c-payne/start-early-addressing-ge_b_1715644.html?utm_hp_ref=gay-voices

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Chick-fil-A Dustup Shows Freedom For Fundies is a One-Way Street

From Truth Wins Out:  http://www.truthwinsout.org/blog/2012/07/27537/

by Wayne Besen
July 30th, 2012

In his latest screed, New York Times columnist Ross Douthat implored thosewho are opposed to Chick-fil-A’s anti-gay views to, “Say what you really think: that the exercise of our religion threatens all that’s good and decent, and that you’re going to use the levers of power to bend us to your will.”

Well, let’s toss the idea right back at Douthat. “Say what you really think: that you and other fundamentalist Christians are superior and that allowing people with whom you disagree to have equal rights and opportunities threatens all that’s good and decent, and that you’re going to continue in the un-American business of using the levers of power to bend us to your will.”

Fundamentalist Christian authors George Grant and Gary North best summarized this view in their infamous book, Changing of the Guard:

“But it is dominion we are after. Not just a voice. It is dominion we are after. Not just influence. It is dominion we are after. Not just equal time. It is dominion we are after.

This is precisely what fundamentalists have been doing for as long as they could get away with it. When it was permissible, they would bully non-Christian students into reciting their sectarian prayers in public schools.

How about race?

Continue reading at:  http://www.truthwinsout.org/blog/2012/07/27537/

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Partisan divide over gay marriage continues to widen in US

From Gay Star News:  http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/partisan-divide-over-gay-marriage-continues-widen-us010812

New poll shows 65% of Democrats favor marriage equality with Republican support down to 24%

By Greg Hernandez
01 August 2012

The partisan divide over gay marriage continues to grow in the US with a new poll showing that 65% of Democrats now favor marriage equality while just 24% of Republicans do.

The numbers are from a survey of 2,973 adults taken between June 28 and July 9 conducted by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life and the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press.

The 65% figure is a rise from the 50% from just four years ago and is more than double the 29 percent of those Democrats who are opposed.

Complete article at:  http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/partisan-divide-over-gay-marriage-continues-widen-us010812

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Bush Appointee Strikes Down DOMA, Citing Historic Discrimination Against Gays And Lesbians

From Think Progress:   http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2012/07/31/617231/bush-appointee-strikes-down-doma-citing-historic-discrimination-against-gays-and-lesbians/

By Zack Ford
on Jul 31, 2012

Another court has overturned the anti-gay Defense of Marriage Act, ruling in Pedersen v. Office of Personnel Management that “no conceivable rational basis exists for the provision.” Judge Vanessa L. Bryant, a district judge in the Second Circuit appointed by President George W. Bush, therefore ruled that DOMA “violates the equal protection principles incorporated in the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution.”

The suit was brought by same-sex couples living in Connecticut, Vermont, and New Hampshire who argued they were unfairly denied access to various programs available to other married couples. House Republicans, under the guise of the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG) and Speaker John Boehner’s (R-OH) leadership, intervened at taxpayer expense to defend the anti-gay statute. In her decision, Bryant took BLAG to task for attempting to rewrite the past by claiming that gays and lesbians have not been subject to discrimination throughout history:

The fact that the concept of homosexuality as a distinct category or class wasn’t fully recognized until the late nineteenth century is not indicative of an absence of a long history of discrimination in light of the long standing proscriptions on homosexual conduct – conduct that is central if not tantamount in some sense to identity. Moreover, the pervasiveness of the “closet” in which homosexuals purposefully hid their sexualities could very well explain why it was only in the late nineteenth century that conceptions of homosexual identity emerged as gay Americans moved into cities and began tentatively stepping out of the closet. […]

Continue reading at:   http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2012/07/31/617231/bush-appointee-strikes-down-doma-citing-historic-discrimination-against-gays-and-lesbians/

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Scotland: Catholic Church challenged on reduced gay life expectancy claim

From Pink News:  http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2012/07/30/scotland-catholic-church-challenged-on-reduced-gay-life-expectancy-claim/

by
July 30, 2012

The co-convenor of the Scottish Green Party Patrick Harvie MSP has challenged the Scottish Catholic Church to produce evidence for its claim that gay relationships harm life expectancy.

The Catholic Church has said it will respond later this week.

Appearing on Scotland Tonight last week to discuss the Scottish government’s plans to legislate for same-sex marriage, spokesman Peter Kearney said: “There is a link between same-sex sexual practice and early death.

“That’s not something that the Catholic Church believes; there is an overwhelming body of medical evidence to suggest that. One study has shown that the life expectancy of a practising homosexual man will be reduced by something between 12 and 20 years.

“We only need to imagine the complex infections, diseases and illnesses that are caused. I think we’re all aware of it. We tend to indulge ourselves in a willful fantasy that there are no dangers, that it’s not harmful.

“That’s not a particularly compassionate response for a society to take.”

Now, Scottish Green Party co-convenor Patrick Harvie has called for Mr Kearney to substantiate his claims.

Continue reading:  http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2012/07/30/scotland-catholic-church-challenged-on-reduced-gay-life-expectancy-claim/

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