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  • Where is the mandating? Straight from the mouth of Jesus, assuming you believe the words attributed to him are his and were not put in his mouth 50 odd years after the fact.

    Mark 16:15-16 (NIV)
    15 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

    That certainly reads like a mandate to me. It’s even called “The Great Commission” by certain sects of Christianity. And this mandate applies to all Christians, not just those that travel to foreign lands as full time missionaries.

    The issue here is the erosion of “christian privilege” which has enabled Christians to impose their faith on others through the force of law based on their majority status. Only in the last 50 years has this presumptive privilege been successively challenged and thus have Christians been “persecuted” in this country.

    The hypocrisy of this bogus privilege is seen most clearly in Christians claiming the right to act according to the dictates of their faith even when it puts them at odds with the law while shielding themselves behind the 1st amendment from similar acts by those of different faiths.

    P.S. Mormons are not Christians for the same reason Christians are not Jews.

  • ARC commented on the blog post Thoughts On Chelsea Manning’s Coming Out

    2013-08-27 09:06:57View | Delete

    First, let me say a hardy thank-you to everyone here who have picked up the torch that Pam was no longer able to carry for all of us in the LGBT+ community. I hope we can all maintain the civility that Pam always insisted on as the foundation of Pam’s House Blend.

    I have gained much respect for Autumn over the past few years as I watched her take a position on the front line with other truly brave people from our community in the fight to bring an end to DADT. Autumn always speaks the truth of her personal experience and I thank her for that even when I don’t always agree or am unable to relate to her experiences.

    To call her a coward (alia michelle August 24th, 2013 at 7:40 pm) reveals your ignorance of who Autumn is and how she lives her life. [GetEqual military veterans, including Autumn Sandeen, chain themselves to WH fence - ]

    None of us are in a position to speak to the totality of why Chelsea did what she did. I am sure no one ever does anything for a single monolithic – all encompassing reason. Our decisions are never wholly rational and divorced from our emotional and psychological disposition when we decide to act. In an ideal world Chelsea would have found the support she needed and that support would likely have precluded her taking the course she did.

    After the fact, her choices were limited and for the most part in the hands of others. I think she chose to take the last opportunity she’s likely to have to make her coming out statement in a public manner before she disappears from the minds of most of the American public. She kept her struggles with her gender identity out of the trial for the most part and did not play the martyr. I certainly think coming out as transgender on the door step of a 35 year prison sentence is courageous in the face of the obvious increased personal danger it represents. Only history and Chelsea herself can decide if her actions were worth the price she is only beginning to pay.

    The only other transgender voice I’ve found on the subject is from Andrea James at Boing Boing. It’s balanced and worth the time if you’re interested in another perspective from within the transgender community. I think the best the transgender community can do at this point is to use the opportunity Chelsea has presented to pick up the ball and keep transgender issues from slipping off the public’s radar as Chelsea is soon to do.

    Manning’s gender hell: Shades of gray in a black-and-white world – Andrea James

  • ARC commented on the blog post Book on anti-gay propaganda becomes number one online success

    2013-05-19 15:58:32View | Delete

    Thank you very much. And thanks for expending so much effort keeping tabs on those who work to keep us all down.

  • ARC commented on the blog post Book on anti-gay propaganda becomes number one online success

    2013-05-19 13:15:14View | Delete

    Is there a way/place this can be downloaded without having a Facebook or Scribd account? All the download buttons on Scribd bring up a sign in box and clicking the “Skip Login” option results in a pitch for the “Premium Reader” paid upgrade.
    Sorry, I know I’m one of the last Facebook Luddites.

  • Any way to download the booklet without having a Facebook account?

    (No, I don’t and have no plans to use Facebook. I thought Scribd allowed downloads without signing in but can’t seem to find one on the link listed.)


  • Sally Ride was openly gay? What does it mean to be openly gay? Has the meaning changed in the last thirty years?

    I agree that Sally Ride was an outstanding gay American and is a role model for all Americans.

    But it doesn’t seem accurate to me to refer to her as the “the first openly gay or bisexual person… to fly in space”. I appreciate the difference between the world we live in today and the one in which Ms. Ride achieved her place in history as the first female U.S. Astronaut. And while I understand her decision to remain closeted because to do otherwise in that time could have certainly precluded her from achieving her goals, I do not think you get to wear the title “openly gay” while only coming out posthumously.

    Or perhaps I need to rethink my definition of “openly gay” for this new century? Are you “openly gay” if you’re out to friends and family but closeted at work? I’ve always considered “openly gay” to mean out everywhere not just where it’s comfortable and safe. Have we advanced so far that being “out” is no longer a revolutionary act that can incur negative consequences as well as positive?

    The balancing of the positive verses the negative consequences of living openly has historically defined the Catch 22 for most members of the LGBT community. Some courageously chose to be out despite any and all costs while other were forced to make the more pragmatic decision to remain closeted in order to be able to live, work, and advance humanity from within a system hostile to the truth of who they are.

    Ms. Ride’s decision to remain closeted while alive in no way diminishes her contributions to the space program or to her efforts to advance science education and to encourage young women to pursue lives outside of roles traditionally chosen for them. But to claim that she was openly gay or bisexual seems to me to deny the hard choices she was forced to make in order to gain access to the opportunities that her talents and abilities equipped her to pursue and in which she excelled.

  • Re: “Satan is a Christian deity.”

    I sometime wonder if Satan rather than being “a” Christian deity is THE Christian deity. A friend recently wrote something and I’m still mulling over in my head exactly how to read it.

    Satan lives only,
    In the deceit
    Of man.
    Penned as
    God’s word
    By his hand.

  • Do they care? Of course they care.

    They care enough to see that it is codified into secular law. They care enough to see that it is exported, expanded, and perpetuated. They care enough to bend and distort facts and science; enough to tell lies and to defame those who dare to live authentic lives honestly and openly even in the face of their persecution.

    What they don’t care for are the doctrines of their religion or the words of the one they claim as their savior. Jesus said “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me.” (Matthew 5:11)

    If Christians are called to live and act in all things as “unto Christ”, how are they able to persecute anyone other than “in His name”? Does this not mean that by their very acts of persecution they cause those they persecute to be blessed? Or am I confused in my efforts to apply logic and reason to that which sheds both logic and reason like water from the back of a duck?

    Persecution cannot be called forth from a heart filled with love. Their actions betray what lies in their hearts and by the fruit of their hearts, they are known.

  • Recruitment Opportunities?

    Sounds to me like this person wants to be a school counselor so that she can recruit kids into her chosen lifestyle.

    This is a special right that most christian mythologians insist is exclusively theirs to claim.

  • @EarthquakeWeather

    You are correct. Tammy turned herself around with respect to gay rights post Jim Baker. She became so vocal in her support of gay rights in fact that they held a memorial service for her in a suburb of Atlanta after her death. The loons from Westboro Baptist Church even drove in from under their rock in Topeka to hold a protest at the memorial service.

  • Oops, sorry. That should be $35K – I transposed the 5 and the 8, that makes it all better. LOL…

  • OMG.
    Pam, you’re usually so very good about posting a “Protect your keyboard warning” but I think you missed it on this one. But maybe not, the sinking feeling in my gut may require a reach for the trashcan instead of reaching to shield my keyboard.

    I guess we all know where the Pres can find at least one GayTM that’s back in full working order, if this particular location was ever out of order.

    I can’t claim to be naive enough not to know what the score is in our political system but somehow it still knocks me for a loop to see it spelled out so clearly. How many people do we all know for whom $38K would represent all or the better part of a year’s salary? No wonder most of us, in and out of the community, feel so poorly represented. We are literally too poor to be represented.

    I wish I had seen this last night cause I really feel like I could use a stiff drink.

    Thanks for sharing this. I don’t know if I had received it in my email if I would have been flattered that someone thought I had the bucks, or insulted that they knew better and were just rubbing it in my face.

  • Margaret,

    Very moving diary post. Thanks for sharing your story.

    As a GWM, I have given some thought to the long standing difficulty of the T’s in our community and to the undeniable short shift that you receive even from within the community.

    I haven’t come up with any answers, only the observation that some combination of education and an in your face/too loud to ignore presence, a la ACTUP, seems to be the only thing that’s going to have an impact. To many people, T’s are still perceived as “men in dresses” and to too many LGB’s seem to see T’s, drag queens and any other non-gender conformists as a bridge to far in our path to equality.

    We have and will continue to be faced with the solomonesque choice of refusing to compromise on equality for all or taking what we can get now while leaving others behind. And while I have a hard time condemning those who grab the victories that most never thought they would see in their life times, I also recognize that our shared humanity suffers when we don’t insist that human equality must be shared with all.

    It’s also important to note that the repeal of DADT does not mandate nondiscrimination for LGB’s but only that LGB status is not grounds for discharge. To the best of my knowledge, the repeal will not prevent bigots in the chain of command from exercising the same type of religious based bias that you experienced against LGB’s in the future.

    Alvin’s call back to the cold reality of the incompleteness of this, none the less historic, victory is important because there are still many gaps of all types and too many ignorant and self righteous opponents to equality for us to remain distracted by jubilation for too long.

    There are no easy answers and the path ahead will not be any easier than the path thus far. We cannot relax, we must push forward using this victory as fuel rather than respite. And you – our brothers and sisters who carry the T part of out banner must continue to make your voices heard and refuse to be ignored either within the community or without.

    One thing has been true throughout all phases of all civil rights struggles. Allies are great and indispensable to the fight, but ultimately we must each make sure that our voice is heard and that we are not marginalized or ignored.

    Thanks for doing your part.

  • ARC commented on the blog post What passes for a professional libertarian viewpoint in my state

    2011-09-17 11:56:19View | Delete

    Libertarianism is the “if you own it you control it – no questions asked” philosophy. Which is why if a national Libertarian Party had been in control during the 1960′s, we would all still be living under Jim Crow. Whenever I’ve pointed this out to a libertarian and stated that this laissez-faire attitude towards racism is why I can’t accept libertarianism as viable political position, I always get the same lame response.

    “Libertarians are not OK with racism, we just think that government is too blunt of a force to use to deal with it. The free market is more than capable of responding to racism. If a restaurant refuses to serve one minority or another the market will respond, people will go elsewhere and the restaurant will either change their policy or go out of business”.

    The one hundred years between the Civil War and the Civil Rights Act of 1964, during which the free market either failed or chose not to act on the injustice of Jim Crow, is inadequate proof to justify the blunt hand of government intervention with respect to protecting the rights of U.S. Citizens from the abuse of their civil rights.

    Libertarianism is little more than lipstick on the pig of “might makes right” anarchy.

  • ARC commented on the blog post F Is For Female: Part One Of Many

    2011-09-08 00:10:09View | Delete

    Courage is Beautiful

    Your courage makes you beautiful.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • I think it should be a trans person. It’s just been reported that Chaz Bono will be on the next season of DWTS so trans visibility will be on the rise.

    The HRC’s as well as the greater LGB community’s history of discounting the T in LGBT is well known. It is based on fear and echos the general populations fear and ignorance of trans people. It’s past time that we work to bring the trials and tribulations of trans folk to the attention of those who still tremble at the thought of “men in dresses”.

    Does this comment in reaction to the Chaz Bono announcement sound familiar?

    “…when I heard that Chaz Bono was going to be on, I was sick. Not that I have anything personally again her/him, I just don’t want that lifestyle choice continually flaunted in the media…”

    We need to bring Trans Pride up to the level of Gay Pride so that not only will they not be thrown under the bus, but can move from the back of the LGBT bus to the front with the rest of us.

    I think putting a talented and articulate trans person the the helm of the HRC would be the best way to ensure that our trans brothers and sisters have a meaningful place at the table. I have no names to put forth, but I’m sure there’s at least a dozen worthy candidates within the community.

    The question is will the powers that be within the HRC step up to the challenge.

  • It’s important to remember that none of the four gospels were written for at least fifty years after the life of Christ. It’s entirely possible that the concept of hell was not put forth by Jesus himself but was added later by one of his followers, someone whose love was as strong as Spriggs and as equally blind.

    It’s not just today’s believers who cherry pick particular portions of the bible that they prefer to elevate above others. The entire Bible was assembled in much the same way. It was pieced together to shore up established doctrines and to turn those who disagreed into heretics.

    Homosexuality is on more a sin than being left-handed. Both are minority orientations determined in utero by factors beyond the control of the individual and both have a long history of misunderstanding and persecution by the Christian church.

    Even our modern use of the term sodomy is based on ignorance of the Bible. Ezekiel 16:49 (NIV) “‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.’” That sounds more like the average republican than the average homosexual.

    I try to hold my tongue in most situations when it comes to faith-based ignorance. But when it encroaches on my Constitutional rights, my equality under the law or when the intent is the use of tax funds to further that ignorance; I will call the mythologians on their BS. Ignorance cherished in private can be ignored, bring it into the public square and it’s fair game for exposure and ridicule.

  • ARC commented on the blog post My Primary Care Says I’m Recovering Well From My Orchi

    2011-08-31 03:19:55View | Delete

    Congrats on following your path, Autumn. Glad to hear that everything is going well post surgery. I’m happy to hear that at least some of your care is covered by the VA. You earned it through your service to the nation and to all of us. Thanks again.

  • Maybe it’s time to point out to Bam Bam that before the Nazis came for the Jews, they came for the mentally and physically handicapped, the Roma, and the gays.

    If you compare this to the current GOP positions and goals, it sort of puts things into perspective. Especially if you remember that it was saint Ronnie Ray Gun who emptied the mental hospitals by handing all the patients a bottle of meds and shoving them out the door.

    Add in the fact that divorce rates correlate closely with religious fundamentalism and the “traditional marriage” claim falls by the way. Newt boy can explain further if you have any doubts on this point.

    Sociologist have shown that the number one factor that enables families in developing nations to pull themselves out of poverty is….(drum roll, please) – Giving women control of their own reproductive destinies. We all know where that falls on the fundies list of goals.

    The only thing I’m not sure of is when we’ll return to the tradition of persecuting left handed people as the minions of Satan. The Catholic church taught this as recently as fifty years ago. The same mythologians who are so sure that no one is born gay were also sure that only Satan could make someone switch from right hand dominance to left handiness. It was the churches duty to force the left handed to give up Satan and their left handedness.

    It’s the fundamental tool of magicians, thieves, and capitalists – misdirection. Keep the masses poor, hungry, and ignorant; give them someone to focus their anger and hatred on and you can steel them blind.

  • ARC commented on the diary post Drug Testing for Welfare Recipients? Why Stop There? by RogerShuler.

    2011-08-29 22:44:56View | Delete

    Forgive my cynicism, but the surest way to end marijuana prohibition would me to equalize the arrest/conviction rates as well as the sentencing between African American/Hispanic and Caucasians.

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