Thursday, June 19, 2003

Is Lakewood Really a Haven for Gays?

The recent brouhaha over Mayor Madeline Cain's decision to fly a rainbow flag (on a separate pole) outside city hall calls into question Lakewood's alleged gay-friendliness.

From the protests outside city hall to Lakewood's lack of either civil-union recognition and protection from discrimination, Lakewood offers all too little in concrete terms to the LGBT community. Mayor Cain's pathetic attempt at compromise in the creation of a "separate but equal" flagpole exposes her as one of the gutless wonders of Ohio politics.

Contrast the situation in Lakewood with Cleveland Mayor Jane Campbell's decision last year to proudly fly the rainbow flag high above city hall for all to see; with Cleveland's anti-discrimination policy; or with Cleveland Heights' recognition of same-sex civil unions.

Is Lakewood really gay friendly simply because a higher than average percentage of gays live there, and non-gay residents are content to "put up or shut up" until rainbow flags are flown? Is this yet another case of style over substance?

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Amusing Gay Quotes

If homosexuality is a disease, let's all call in queer to work: "Hello. Can't work today, still queer." ~ Robin Tyler

In response to a reader who complained to "Dear Abby" that a gay couple was moving in across the street and wanted to know what he could do to improve the quality of the neighborhood, she replied: 'You could move.'
~ Abigail Van Buren

The one bonus of not lifting the ban on gays in the military is that the next time the government mandates a draft we can all declare homosexuality instead of running off to Canada. ~ Lorne Bloch

You don't have to be straight to be in the military; you just have to be able to shoot straight. ~ Barry Goldwater

Why can't they have gay people in the army? Personally, I think they are just afraid of a thousand guys with M16s going, "Who'd you call a faggot?"~ Jon Stewart

Soldiers who are not afraid of guns, bombs, capture, torture or death say they are afraid of homosexuals. Clearly we should not be used as soldiers; we should be used as weapons. ~ Letter to the Editor, The Advocate

Why is it that, as a culture, we are more comfortable seeing two men holding guns than holding hands? ~ Ernest Gaines

Drag is when a man wears everything a lesbian won't. ~ Author Unknown

When Millionaire Horace Appley found out his son was gay, he asked him, "How can you be this educated, talented, good looking, rich, healthy, speak several languages, and be gay?" Son's reply: "LUCKY I GUESS."

If male homosexuals are called "gay," then female homosexuals should be called "ecstatic." ~ Shelly Roberts

My mother took me to a psychiatrist when I was fifteen because she thought I was a latent homosexual. There was nothing latent about it. ~ Amanda Bearse

The Bible contains six admonishments to homosexuals and 362 admonishments to heterosexuals. That doesn't mean that God doesn't love heterosexuals. It's just that they need more supervision. ~ Lynn Lavner

My lesbianism is an act of Christian charity. All those women out there praying for a man, and I'm giving them my share. ~ Rita Mae Brown

The only queer people are those who don't love anybody. ~ Rita Mae Brown

It always seemed to me a bit pointless to disapprove of homosexuality. It's like disapproving of rain. ~ Francis Maude

My own belief is that there is hardly anyone whose sexual life, if it were broadcast, would not fill the world at large with surprise and horror. ~ W.Somerset Maugham

Monday, June 9, 2003

But what does Jerry Falwell think?

From the news ticker, with my commentary in parentheses:

During an open-air mass Sunday in the port city of Reijeka in Croatia, Pope John Paul II issued his strongest condemnation to date of same-sex unions, urging Catholics to defend "traditional family values." The pontiff's entire sermon to the 100,000 who gathered on a very hot day to hear him speak was devoted to attacking gay families. (The entire sermon? Didn't he have anything more relevant to talk about, like the neverending war in Iraq?) He told Catholics they must defend traditional family values against gay marriage (but not priests who molest children) and put a "tragically fragmented" society back on track with God's wishes.

"God's authentic plan" for the family, the pontiff said, was founded on "the stable and faithful union of a man and a woman, bound to each other with a bond that is publicly manifested and recognized." The traditional family, he said needs "special consideration and concrete policies aimed at promoting and protecting its essential nature, its development and stability." (In other words, the Pope is trying to stick his nose in the business of government, while he would take offense at the government prosecuting priests who molest children). To cheers, the pope added that the fact that society is so divided "is the reason why it is so desperately unfulfilled." He urged the crowd not to be afraid of publicly defending traditional family values in modern society.

A few thoughts:

Every day in every way, the church becomes less relevant. Attendance at Catholic churches, as a percentage of population, falls every year. And the lack of priesthood candidates means more churches will close. In Poland, the Pope's homeland and a Catholic stronghold, the population voted by an overwhelming majority this past weekend to join the European Union, even though it will mean dilution of the Church's power over social issues such as homosexuality and abortion. Even a member of my family--a youth counselor for the church--has told me some of the Pope's positions on sexuality are way off base.

Friday, June 6, 2003

Horowitz ReDiscovered

High voltage pianism...

OK, Gay Republicans, Rationalize THIS...

Like I said before, How many times do you have to hit yourself on the head with a hammer before you realize you'll feel better when you STOP?

The U.S. Justice Department has barred its employees from holding their annual gay pride celebration at the department's headquarters in Washington, D.C., The New York Times reports. Gay activists say it's the first time any federal agency has blocked a pride event. According to the employee group DOJ Pride, which includes several hundred gay and lesbian Justice Department employees, members were told by department officials that they couldn't hold their annual celebration this month because the White House does not formally recognize Gay Pride Month with a presidential proclamation.

"This sends a real chilling message to Justice Department employees who are gay and lesbian," said David Smith, a spokesman for the gay rights group Human Rights Campaign. "This says, 'You're not welcome.... It says that employees can celebrate Asian-American Heritage Month and Hispanic Heritage Month and so on, but you cannot."

According to a statement released by the American Civil Liberties Union, this new policy regarding pride violates an explicit promise Attorney General John Ashcroft made at his confirmation hearing. The policy also violates the department's own antidiscrimination policy, the ACLU said. At his confirmation hearing on January 17, 2001, and five days later in writing, Ashcroft assured the Senate Judiciary Committee that he would not discriminate against the department's pride group and that he would not change the department's policy on how the group was treated.

"The only group apparently excluded under this new policy is the gay group," said Matt Coles, director of of the ACLU's Lesbian and Gay Rights Project. "That looks like discrimination to me."

Monday, June 2, 2003

At Last, He's Come to His Senses...

Former Republican joins Stonewall Democrats caucus

The National Stonewall Democrats, a gay political group, on Monday welcomed New Hampshire state representative Corey Corbin of Rockingham as the newest member of the NSD Elected Officials Caucus. Corbin, who was previously a Republican, changed party affiliation last week in the wake of the well-publicized antigay comments made by U.S. senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania.

"Being a gay man and, up until this week, a Republican, those comments truly summed up for me the attitude of the GOP toward the millions of gay men and women who work, raise families, pay taxes, and contribute to our society," Corbin said. "We are hated, we are marginalized and are basically unwanted by a party that has forsaken the principles of Abraham Lincoln and become dominated by a right wing that falls far short of representing mainstream America."

Corbin was first elected to the New Hampshire house of representatives in 2000.

"We're excited to welcome Corey into our Elected Officials Caucus," said Dave Noble, NSD executive director. "As a former Republican, he is able to vocalize the strong differences that exist between the two major parties on issues of equality."

My Comment:

Personally, I have never been able to understand why some gay men and (fewer) lesbians insist on voting Republican and supporting Republican candidates, some of them anti-gay. It's analagous to being a Jewish Nazi, especially in light of President Bush's appointments of wackos like John Ashcroft and the Republican party's alarming concessions to their own extreme right-wing elements. I also took notice that during Bush's recent trip to a concentration camp in Poland, he mentioned the Jews persecuted but not the many other groups, including homosexuals. Bush is in Egypt as I write this, and I have no illusion that he will mention the present-day persecution of homosexuals in Egypt.

What good is a tax cut if you're not truly free?