Category Archives: homophobia

Racism in the LGBT world

Now Is the Time to Start Talking About Racism in the LGBT Community

The LGBT community endorses — marriage equality for all — perhaps the next major issue to address: LGBT representation has been dominated by cisgender gay white men.
Gay black men like my husband experience racism as a “double-minority” in stores, clubs, and work. Our “Gayborhood” includes West Hollywood but is bereft of black and queer folks,

In the Huffington Post Ernest Owens (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ernest-owens looked at the problem that people of color are often portrayed as drag-ballroom performers or hyper-sexual eye-candy.

He goes on to say: “take the fight for marriage equality for example, where have people of color been individually called on to take up that fight? Who sets that agenda? And where are LGBT allies when it comes to the racial injustices we face outside of queer politics. When other human rights groups were at Ferguson or Baltimore — many LGBT organizations said nothing about the queer people of color who might have been afflicted”.

Yes, the black community has homophobic views. But the current LGBT movement lacks recognizing variety and sympathy for people of color in general. And this does NOT distract from other social causes we are trying to achieve.

As the Supreme Court consiiders marriage equality and perhaps ends the fight we should move on to the next LGBT movement which ismore diverse and colorful.

Because the constant recycling of Dan Savage and many other white, cisgender men like him turns off aspiring LGBT members of color to come out and align themselves within the movement.

That means more queer events fundraising not for white queer but, for example, black transgender atrocities or the “Undocuqueer” people of color denied citizenship.

As Owens says “It’s time to start addressing the racial setbacks in the current LGBT movement. If we don’t now, we are never going to obtain that pot of gold equality on the other side of the diverse rainbow”.

The Supreme Court, Marriage Equality and the Church

We are anxiously awaiting oral arguments this week, committed gay couples seeking the right to marry will take their case to the Supreme Court.

Religious groups are on their side, including my welcoming Unitarian Universalist Church, have signed briefs to legalize same-sex marriage.
The faith traditions supporting marriage equality are telling the court that religions, like American families, are diverse. Even some Bible-based faith communities have an inclusive attitude toward gay families and marriages.

This is another example of changes of public attitudes and then the law change. Before the Civil War, many Mormons and Southern Slavery for persons of African descent was justified by Bible interpretations. Then when slavery ended, then churches read Scripture to require segregation and to bar interracial relationships.

Inevitably, this overt discrimination was renounced with new readings of the Bible after landmark civil rights legislation in the 1960s. The Mormons abandoned formal racial segregation in 1978. Scripture rarely speaks with one voice about how to define civil marriage.

If the Supreme Court interprets the 14th Amendment to mean that states can’t exclude gay couples from civil marriage. I hope that churches which are adamantly opposed to same-sex marriageshow a tolerant path eventually.

With greater tolerance and acceptance of gay married couples, more religions will, slowly, modify doctrinal discourse to match social discourse — exactly the way they did for their previous disapproval of marriages between two people of different races.

Source:
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/26/opinion/sunday/its-not-gay-marriage-vs-the-church-anymore.html?ref=todayspaper

Podcast-BMISJ Program

podcast

Podcast on BMI Proposal for the West coast

Ken and Mack Scott Baron have always been a fan of the Bush Mallon Institute for Social Justice since it addresses our core hopes for the elimination of racism and homophobia. We were encouraged by the recent collaboration on the the ” Reflections of A Shattered Mirror Project” and anticipate further great work for the BMISJ

We would like to propose a few ideas that Mack and I develop programs under the auspices of the BMISJ. This should have no impact on the Committee budget and would strive to complement the work you are doing.

Our focus would be concentrated in the West and South West of the US and would use the talents of BWMTSC, MACT PHX and members at large in the area.

In brief, the directions we plan to take involve the communities of Los Angeles and Long Beach and perhaps Phoenix to network our chapters successes in the following areas:

1. The continued online exposure of the BMISJ past present and future work.

2. The “New Jim Crow” challenges to communities of color from the prison-industrial complex

3. The plight of undocumented workers fighting discrimination and racism using skills gained in the Long Beach Immigration Rights Coalition

Subsets of this are the “Undocuqueer” and binational LGBT partners needs

Current networks include (amongst others):

1. The Unitarian Universalist Church with a 100 years of Social Action and active programs related to the above
2. The partner group of MACT PHX: UGIMA (United Gay Informed Men of African Descent)
3. The Center Long Beach

Current resources include (but not limited to):

NA Podcasts
NA Videos
NA Video Histories
BWMTSC “Gabfests”

Mack and Ken Scott Baron
Founders, BWMTSC
Former NA Co Chairs
Developers, MACT PHX

Bruce Jenner: Transgender and Olympic Hero

Just out: Bruce Jenner. is reported to be preparing to come out as a transgender woman.

As a predominantly gay organization we have looked at the homophobia issue related to the T in LGBTQ and it needs more attention, for, as Vice President Joe Biden said “transgender discrimination is the civil rights issue of our time”.

Many feel uncomfortable at this subject and there are snickers, and most people have binary view of gender (male or female), but there is no doubt a continuum of sexual identity. However, transgender identification is a path that no one would choose unless it is an authentic need, given the family rejection and hostility.

So far this year, at least three transgender people have been reported murdered in the US. And according to the Human Rights Campaign 13 transgender women were murdered in 2014: They were shot, strangled, burned and beaten.

In my city there was an April 2010 attack on Cal State Long Beach transgender student Colle Carpenter attacked in a campus restroom by an assailant who carved “It” on his chest.

The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs report says violent crimes against people in the LGBT community rose 13% in 2010, and that minorities and transgender women were more likely to be targeted. Last year’s homicide count reached 27, up from 22 in 2009,  Of those killed, 70% were minorities and 44% were transgender women. 50% of the 2010 assault survivors did not make police reports, with minorities and transgender people the least likely to come forward.

So Bruce Jenner may have to handle, in the public glare, all of these issues and is willing to be a role model and help educate the world on transgender issues.

We salute those who come out under great stress and the families and allies who support them. The NABWMT has over 30 years of history fighting for civil rights and denouncing homophobia. There is still work to be done.

Source: Nicholas Kristof New York Times, Lee Romney LA Times

The NA Joins Crowdfunding of New Anti Homophobia Documentary

The NABWMT is providing funding to a UK based videographer Daniel Law to produce a documentary on the homophobia in Uganda. This is in keeping with our support of such work as pioneered by NA Director Kirk Gile and others.
NA Director Pat Carron sent the following to Daniel:

“Dear Daniel,

On behalf of NABWMT, we are pleased to support your documentary on Evangelicals and Uganda’s Anti-Gay law.  Your investigation of Mr. Shinners is very important and quite impressive. Like you, we have been following the influence of evangelical pastors, like Scott Lively, on Uganda for some time now. Thus, we are very happy to contribute to your project and we encourage you to continue on!

As an organization, we have numerous local chapters of Black and White Men Together and Men of All Colors Together across the United States. We have over 11,000 interested people following our Facebook page with discussions about Uganda. Our website (nabwmt.org) has published our statement on African Homophobia, with a reference to evangelicals, their dirty work, and their tax-exempt status. We are a kindred spirit to your efforts.

We would love to interact with you because we have so many questions like:
When will the film be complete and how many minutes will it be?
Have you produced other documentaries before?
Can we assist in promoting your film and efforts here in the U.S.? We would love to screen your film to our members through our national convention and local chapters.
When is your next trip to Uganda?
How will NABWMT be mentioned as a supporter of your project?

I hope we can build a collaborative partnership regarding your project.
We think this work is very crucial!

Respectfully,

Patrick Carron
Board of Directors, NABWMT”

Daniel acknowledged this in his response below 

Daniel Law 

To: 

Mark P. Behar, PA-C 

“Thank you so much for your support and kind donation. I hope to have the film finished by May at the latest, but sooner if I can raise the funds. I currently plan for the documentary to be around the 90 minute mark. This is my first documentary, but I do have a number of experienced filmmakers to turn to for advice where needed. I would be very grateful if you could assist in promoting the film in the U.S and screening it to your members. I hope to return to Uganda for additional filming as soon as possible. Ideally in the next few weeks if I can secure the funds. I will thank your organization in the credits for your support and kind donation.

While there is much publicity regarding US evangelicals like Scott Lively, there are many in the UK who fly under the radar. I plan to show that it is not just pastors from the US spreading this hatred and that this is an international problem. The Charity Commission in the UK had been deemed “not fit for purpose” by MPs and despite numerous complaints has allowed Shinners to retain his tax-free charity status despite a clear breach of their rules. Another UK preacher, Jacqui Green, from the UK just attended Bishop Kiganda’s anti-gay new year’s rally despite me bringing it to her attention in advance and pressure from numerous groups/newspapers. Paul Shinners is again in Africa spreading his dangerous lies and propaganda as we speak.

If you could reach out to your members or affiliated groups in whatever ways you can and ask them to also contribute to this project then it can be completed sooner and hopefully preempt the passage of the new anti-gay bill in Uganda.

Any further help and support would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again,

Daniel”

For Further questions and comments please contact Pat Carron (pjcarron@aol.com)

Oscar Contenders: Gay Hero and Civil Rights Hero

This is the season for Oscar Contenders and I am thrilled to see that “The Imitation Game” and “Selma” are in there.

So, go and see the former movie telling the tale of Alan Turing and his team who broke the German Enigma code and saved millions of lives during World War II. Rather than be recognized as a hero he was persecuted for being gay and chemically castracted, then committed suicide, He was a pioneer in every way and his work led the way to phones and computers. Our LGBT history has been suppressed but we must revive and celebrate it.

And the much acclaimed movie of the civil rights era “Selma” is now in wide release. Criticism of this movie for it’s portrayal of President Johnson as a laggard on civil rights has surfaced. History has to be carefully examined as it is shown in movies. For example, the film “Lincoln” was critizised by historians for ignoring the role African Americans had in their emancipation. However, historians claim that Johnson worked in the background to acheive the Civil Rights and Voting Rights.

Our organization prides itself in telling the whole story behind Black and White, Gay and Straight issues, so these movies help remind that these heroic strugles need everyone to tell theses tales from history.

Source: NY TImes, http://theimitationgamemovie.com

Apple’s Tim Cook Comes Out

qqAs an openly gay man and an unashamed Apple “Fan Boy” I was heartened yesterday when Tim Cook, the CEO of top Furtune company Apple came out. Although he came out from a position of strength (Apple just had the blockbuster quarter), and though it was not a secret, it is still noteworthy.

Many of our members have beem forced out and young LGBT people stilll suffer from societal and family ostracization, and hopefully this resonates and improves our image as loving and productive citizens.