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NEWS -- 2007.06.01.Friday

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  • James Martin
    1) Pride Month Television Programming Highlights 2) Toyota 3) Musician Canned for Focus on Wrong Organ 4) Pope Praises Anti-Gay Protestors 5) Officers and
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 1, 2007
      1) Pride Month Television Programming Highlights
      2) Toyota
      3) Musician Canned for Focus on Wrong Organ
      4) Pope Praises Anti-Gay Protestors
      5) Officers and Counterprotesters Disrupt Gay Rights Rally in Russia
      6) Dr. Laura's son linked to lurid Web page
      7) Utah's Episcopal diocese calls shunning of gay bishop 'hurtful'
      8) Religion, Gays, Suicide
      9) VP's lesbian caption ignites 'sinful' fury
      10) Conservative Christians Least Likely to Admit to Knowing Gays
      11) Anonymous -- Floating around the Internet


      1)
      Pride Month Television Programming Highlights

      GLAAD.org

      June 2007: Pride Month Television Programming Highlights

      http://www.glaad.org/eye/June2007Programming.php


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      2)
      Toyota
      Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NqY55EMquh8&NR=1


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      3)
      Musician Canned for Focus on Wrong Organ

      http://www.salon.com/wire/ap/archive.html?wire=D8PETU4O2.html

      May 30, 2007 | NEW FRANKEN, Wis. -- A Catholic priest has removed his church's organist and choir director from her duties saying her sale of sex toys was not "consistent with Church teachings."

      Linette Servais, 50, played the organ and sung with the choir for 35 years. Much of her work as choir director and organist was done without pay. When her parish priest asked to meet with her, she thought it was to say thank you.
      Instead, she was told to quit her sales job with company known as Pure Romance or she would lose her position in the church.

      Pure Romance in Loveland, Ohio, is a $60 million per year business that sells spa products and sex toys at homes parties attended by women. It has 15,000 consultants like Servais.

      She said her decision was not hard: She began working with Pure Romance after a brain tumor and treatment left her sexually dysfunctional. The job allows her to help other women who have similar problems.

      "After I got over the initial shock, I prayed over this a long time," she said. "I feel that Pure Romance is my ministry."

      The Rev. Dean Dombroski felt differently, removing her from the choir loft just before Thanksgiving and gradually taking away other church duties. Servais can no longer take pictures during First Communion services or lead the committee planning St. Joseph's annual late-summer picnic.


      Dombroski said he couldn't discuss the situation because it involves personnel. But in a letter to his rural congregation, he wrote: "Linette is a consultant for a firm which sells products of a sexual nature that are not consistent with Church teachings. Because parish leaders are expected to model the teaching of our faith ... she could stay on as the choir director/organist or she could continue to be a consultant but she could not do both."
      Servais responded with her own three-page letter to church members, saying she felt compelled to help other women, especially those suffering from problems caused by cancer.

      Many choir members quit in support, she said, and some have gathered at her home on occasional Thursdays to sing hymns.

      "Father Dean made it sound so sinful," she said. "There is so much more to this business than toys."

      -------

      Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com



      Salon provides breaking news articles from the Associated Press as a service to its readers, but does not edit the AP articles it publishes.

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      4)
      Pope Praises Anti-Gay Protestors

      http://www.365gay.com/Newscon07/05/052407pope.htm

      The Associated Press
      May 24, 2007 - 9:00 am ET

      Pope Praises Anti-Gay Protestors

      (Vatican City) Pope Benedict XVI on Thursday praised a recent demonstration in Rome against proposed legislation granting legal rights to unmarried couples, including gay ones, saying it showed that traditional family was at the core of Italian society.

      Benedict called the May 12 Family Day rally, organized by Catholic groups and family associations, a "great and extraordinary popular festival."

      Hundreds of thousands of people turned out for the demonstration to protest a bill that would grant legal rights to unmarried couples, including hospital visits and inheritance rights. The bill does not legalize gay marriage, as was done in other European countries, such as Spain.

      The bill has angered the Vatican, which under Benedict has been conducting a fierce campaign to protect traditional family based on marriage between man and woman.

      In a speech to Italian bishops, Benedict said he respected the distinction between the church and politics. But he added that the church cannot ignore "what is good for man ... what is good for the common good of Italy."

      He said the Family Day rally "confirmed that the family itself is profoundly rooted in the heart and life of Italians."

      Benedict's speech came as the government opened a conference on the family in Florence to help it create family policies that are, according to organizers, "more European and more modern." The conference was organized by the two Cabinet ministers spearheading the legislation on legal recognition for unmarried couples.

      In a keynote speech, Italian President Giorgio Napolitano urged lawmakers to listen to the church and not create an artificial confrontation between Catholics and laity. But he said that de facto unions were "a reality" that had to be taken into account.

      The number of official marriages celebrated in Italy has declined steadily since the early 1970s with an ever increasing number of de facto unions taking their place. The national statistics bureau, Istat, estimates there were about 592,000 such unions in Italy in 2005, or about 4.1 percent of all heterosexual couples.


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      5)
      Officers and Counterprotesters Disrupt Gay Rights Rally in Russia

      http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/28/world/europe/28moscow.html

      The New York Times
      May 28, 2007

      Officers and Counterprotesters Disrupt Gay Rights Rally in Russia

      Representatives from gay rights groups, however, seemed undaunted
      by the violence and vowed to continue organizing demonstrations.

      By MICHAEL SCHWIRTZ

      MOSCOW, May 27 — Police officers and riot troops quashed a gay rights rally in Moscow on Sunday, detaining organizers as well as at least two European lawmakers, while members of Orthodox Christian and nationalist groups badgered the demonstrators with insults, eggs and fists.

      Barely had Nikolai A. Alekseyev, the event’s main organizer, appeared in front of City Hall when the police pushed him and several other demonstrators into a police bus.

      Skirmishes between gay rights protesters and counterprotesters broke out across from City Hall along Tverskaya Street, Moscow’s main thoroughfare. The general disorder made it hard to determine the number of people actually participating in the demonstration. Mr. Alekseyev had predicted that 200 people would participate.

      A man in camouflage clothing struck Peter Tatchell, a British gay rights campaigner, in the face as he tried to speak to the news media. Officers arrested the man who threw the punch and took Mr. Tatchell to a police van for his protection, a police spokesman said.

      Later, Marco Cappato, a European Parliament member from Italy, traded blows with another man wearing camouflage as riot police officers looked on.

      The police detained Mr. Cappato, along with Volker Beck, a member of the German Parliament, but later released them. It was unclear what happened to the man who had been fighting with Mr. Cappato.

      In all, the police detained 31 people, though it was unclear how many of those would face charges, the police spokesman said. Speaking by phone from a detention center, Mr. Alekseyev said that he had been charged with disobeying police orders and that he would spend at least one night in jail.

      Representatives from the nationalist and radical Orthodox groups arrived shortly before noon, when the rally was to begin. The attempted rally, skirmishes and arrests were over within an hour.

      Sunday’s protest was the second effort by organizers to hold a gay pride demonstration in Moscow. A similar event last year ended in bloodshed when more than 100 ultranationalists and radical Orthodox Christians attacked gay rights demonstrators in Moscow.

      As was the case for last year’s protest, organizers of this event had not won government approval to hold the rally. But organizers said protesters faced less violence this year.

      Still, many protesters, some holding rainbow flags, others chanting slogans, faced antigay remarks from representatives of the radical Union of Orthodox Flag Bearers and a group calling itself the Black Hundreds.

      A group of people surrounded one demonstrator shouting, “Sodom will not stand!” Several protesters were hit by eggs.

      In contrast with some Western European countries, there is little public acceptance of homosexuality in Russia, where prominent public officials have made disparaging remarks about homosexuals.

      Representatives from gay rights groups, however, seemed undaunted by the violence and vowed to continue organizing demonstrations.


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      6)
      Dr. Laura's son linked to lurid Web page

      http://www.sltrib.com/ci_5934072

      The Salt Lake Tribune
      Salt Lake City UT
      Wednesday, May 23, 2007

      Dr. Laura son linked to lurid Web page

      Site contained violent, sex-oriented images one official called 'repulsive'

      By Matthew D. LaPlante
      The Salt Lake Tribune

      The soldier son of talk radio relationship counselor Laura Schlessinger is under investigation for a graphic personal Web page that one Army official has called "repulsive."

      The MySpace page, publicly available until Friday when it disappeared from the Internet, included cartoon depictions of rape, murder, torture and child molestation; photographs of soldiers with guns in their mouths; a photograph of a bound and blindfolded detainee captioned "My Sweet Little Habib"; accounts of illicit drug use; and a blog entry headlined by a series of obscenities and racial epithets.

      The site is credited to and includes many photographs of Deryk Schlessinger, the 21-year-old son of the talk radio personality known simply as Dr. Laura. Broadcast locally on 570 KNRS, "Family Values Talk Radio," the former family counselor spends three hours daily taking calls and offering advice on morals, ethics and values. She broadcast a show from Fort Douglas, in Salt Lake City, last week.

      Military leaders have long grappled with how to balance positive publicity and operational security with technological opportunities for troops to tell their personal stories.

      The Pentagon last week shut down access to a variety of video-sharing and social networking Internet sites, including MySpace, on its computer systems worldwide. Officials said the change was made to enhance security and protect a strained bandwidth, but critics worried that it might close a public window into the lives of deployed U.S. troops, some of which can be raw, frightening, violent and revealing.

      "Yes . . . F---ING Yes!!!" said one blog entry on the Schlessinger site. "I LOVE MY JOB, it takes everything reckless and deviant and heathenistic and just overall bad about me and hyper focuses these traits into my job of running around this horrid place doing nasty things to people that deserve it . . . and some that don't."

      Deryk Schlessinger joined the Army in 2004, telling a crowd of Santa Barbara, Calif., Army reservists gathered for an appearance by his mother that he resented the way Americans criticize the war without recognizing soldiers' sacrifices.

      "Real people were fighting, and I wanted to be part of that," the younger Schlessinger said, according to The Associated Press.

      Since Deryk Schlessinger deployed earlier this year, his mother's talk show increasingly has been focused on the battles being waged in Iraq and Afghanistan and the wars' effects on families back home. Meanwhile, the radio host has taken to referring to herself as "the proud mother of a deployed American paratrooper" and speaks frequently about her soldier son before military audiences nationwide.

      Deryk Schlessinger did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment from The Tribune.

      Mike Paul, spokesman for Laura Schlessinger, released a statement which said, in part, "We hope all news media outlets will respect his privacy for his safety and the safety of those serving with him." In an interview with The Tribune, Paul suggested that the page could be a fake.

      That was a contention echoed by Army spokesman Robert Tallman, who said "it may be possible that our enemies are actually behind this.

      "Our enemies are adaptive, technologically sophisticated, and truly understand the importance of the information battlespace," Tallman continued. "Sadly, they will use that space to promulgate and disseminate untrue propaganda."

      MySpace is an online social network in which users link pages together through like interests and shared friendships. The Deryk Schlessinger page included nearly a dozen "friends," including a number of soldiers in Afghanistan, several of whom were linked back to Schlessinger's page and some of whom had additional photos of, and comments from, Schlessinger on their sites.

      Deryk Schlessinger's Web site indicated the 21-year-old soldier is stationed in Kandahar, Afghanistan, where, the site's author writes, "godless crazy people like me," have become "a generation of apathetic killers."

      The site indicated Schlessinger's team has survived numerous mortar, rocket and roadside bomb attacks. It also included several graphic cartoons. In one of the stick drawings, a top-hatted man laughs as he rapes a bound and bleeding woman in front of her family. In another depiction, a man forces a boy to perform oral sex at knifepoint as the child's mother pleads for her son's life.

      It's unclear who created the cartoons, but Army spokesman Robert Tallman said the drawings "are repulsive and not anywhere near being acceptable," for a soldier's personal Web page.

      The Tribune learned of the Web page earlier this week from a former schoolmate of Deryk Schlessinger. Army officials said they were unaware of the site until alerted to its presence by the newspaper Thursday.

      David Accetta, public affairs director for the 82nd Airborne Division in Afghanistan, said the Army "will investigate thoroughly and impartially."

      In an e-mail to 82nd commanders, Accetta asked to see "how the site is being administered and if we can shut it down." By Friday morning the site was offline, but officials didn't immediately respond to questions about who took it down.

      Accetta said the pictures and writings he reviewed from the site were inconsistent with the values of Army special forces soldiers.

      J.P. Borda, who administers an online index of thousands of personal military Web pages, said military guidelines and common decency are respected by "the overwhelming majority of military bloggers in Iraq and Afghanistan."

      "There are a few bad apples and they have soured the whole bunch," said Borda, who began his site - www.milblogging.com - during his first tour of duty in Afghanistan in 2004.

      Laura Schlessinger's appearance in Utah last week included a visit with Army families at Fort Douglas. In an interview with The Tribune, she said, "We raised our son to be a warrior."

      After her Utah visit, Schlessinger received criticism for telling The Tribune that she didn't want to hear the complaints of military wives whose husbands are deployed. "He could come back without arms, legs or eyeballs, and you're bitching?" Schlessinger said. "You're not dodging bullets, so I don't want to hear any whining."

      Schlessinger later wrote on her Web site - www.drlaura.com - that she was trying to communicate her belief that military spouses shouldn't complain to war-deployed family members, who have more pressing concerns. "I never whine to my son when he is able to call between missions," she wrote.


      mlaplante@...

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      7)
      Utah's Episcopal diocese calls shunning of gay bishop 'hurtful'

      http://www.sltrib.com/ci_5991614

      The Salt Lake Tribune
      Salt Lake City UT
      Friday, May 25, 2007

      Utah's Episcopal diocese calls shunning of gay bishop 'hurtful'

      By Jessica Ravitz
      The Salt Lake Tribune

      The Episcopal Diocese of Utah weighed in this week on news that the first openly gay bishop of the Episcopal Church is, at least for now, off the invitation list for a worldwide Anglican Communion conference.
      The Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, who heads the 77 million-member Anglican Communion (which includes the Episcopal Church), issued more than 800 invitations to the 2008 Lambeth Conference, a gathering of bishops that happens once every 10 years. Not on the list: Bishop V. Gene Robinson of the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire.

      Robinson, who is openly gay, was consecrated in 2003, and the move by the Episcopal Church fueled ongoing tensions within the Anglican Communion.

      Bishop Carolyn Tanner Irish of the Episcopal Diocese of Utah has been a strong supporter of Robinson. Irish was out of the country and could not be reached for comment, but a statement issued Wednesday by the Utah diocese called the shunning "an extremely rare historic occurrence" and "deeply hurtful."

      "To single him out because of his sexuality shows a regrettable lack of respect for his diocese," the statement read.

      The Rev. Mary June Nestler said that of the more than 200 bishops in the United States, she knew of no other who was excluded from the invitation list.

      In a statement Robinson issued, he said: "At a time when the Anglican Communion is calling for a 'listening process' on the issue of homosexuality, it makes no sense to exclude gay and lesbian people from that conversation. It is time that the Bishops of the Anglican Communion stop talking about gay and lesbian people and start talking to us."

      Utah's Nestler said there remains a chance that Robinson will be invited to the conference as a guest, but not as a full participant like other bishops.

      With the conference more than a year away - it's scheduled for July 2008 - Nestler said it's too soon to say how Episcopal bishops, including Irish, will respond as the date draws nearer. She did say she's heard "a number of bishops float the possibility that if Gene were not invited they would not attend." But, at the same time, she said many are saying they should make a point of being there to speak out on Robinson's behalf and about issues of discrimination.

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      8)
      Religion, Gays, Suicide

      http://www.nyblade.com/2007/5-25/viewpoint/opinion/suicide.cfm

      The New York Blade [lgbtq]
      Friday, May 25, 200y

      Religion, Gays, Suicide

      By CAROL LYNN PEARSON
      May 25, 2007

      Lights come up. A cemetery. An unfilled grave. A Mormon mother who is relieved that her gay son who killed himself is now free from sin and safe with God. A father who realizes that he never knew his son and insists on conducting another funeral, “here, where there are trees, random, struggling, maybe some imperfection—not in a cookie cutter brick chapel.” The partner of their son, whom they chose not to meet and who unexpectedly shows up at the gravesite.

      What would they say to each other? Would there be any surprises, any insights into this awful event—for them?—for us?

      As a playwright and a person deeply committed to these issues, I wanted to know. I listened. Soon the three characters began to speak to me. And before long they had a story in “Facing East.”

      The story consumed me. I had a unique platform from which to speak. My Mormon temple marriage to a gay man, and the many experiences that came from publishing a book on our life together and his death from AIDS (“Goodbye, I Love You”), had filled me with a realization of how badly we—society and especially religious communities such as mine—deal with homosexuality, and how condemnation and hopelessness too often drive gay people to suicide.

      The suicide attempt of a gay man who had become a dear friend still haunted me. And I knew that Utah’s statistics on suicide—now placing the state first in the nation for suicides of men 15–24 (probably close to a third of those gay men)—was itself a cry for help. I knew too that all conservative religions share the same guilt, doing incredible violence to our gay people and their families when we speak so glibly of how God views homosexuals.

      WHAT IS BETTER EQUIPPED to examine our guilt and point to a better way than drama? Nothing else I know of has the immediate magic that invites one person into the heart of another, the magic to shine that much-needed light through the darkness. Surprisingly, Brigham Young, soon after arriving with his pioneers in the Utah territory, said, “If I were placed on a cannibal island and given the task of educating that people, I would straightway build a theater for the purpose.” That the theater can educate, as well as entertain is, I think, why I love it. The lights on a stage—illuminating story, character, idea, failure, tragedy, triumph—can brighten the darker corners of our own minds and hearts.

      “Facing East” premiered in November of 2006 in Salt Lake City with Plan-B Theatre and ran for three weeks to sold-out audiences. The Church-owned Deseret Morning News gave the play its award for the year’s “best drama.” It is scheduled now for an off-Broadway run in May/June of ’07 and a San Francisco run in August (see www.planbtheatre.org).

      Toward the end of the play we see that the characters have learned something.

      ALEX: We stand guilty, Ruth. I was the priest and you were the Levite, and we came upon the Jewish man who had been beaten and left by the side of the road. Our son.

      RUTH: No!

      ALEX: We were the thieves too, that stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead…The only binder of wounds I see standing here...is this despicable....outcast....unclean.... homosexual Samaritan....friend, who saw nothing but God in our son! We crossed the road and let him suffer. And the awful thing....the truly awful thing is....we are better than that!

      I love that line. “We are better than that!” In the darkness of a theater that ray of light enters our minds and invites us to behave better—Mormons, Catholics, Evangelicals, Jews, people of all religions and of no religion. The conflict many families face over religion and homosexuality makes great stuff for drama. And hopefully drama can help solve those conflicts for the individuals and the families whose suffering is all too real.


      Carol Lynn Pearson is the author of many books and plays, including the recent “No More Goodbyes: Circling the Wagons Around Our Gay Loved Ones” (www.nomoregoodbyes.com). “Facing East” is now playing at Atlantic Stage 2, 330 W. 16th St., 212-279-4200, www.planbtheatre.org/facingeast.

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      9)
      VP's lesbian caption ignites 'sinful' fury

      http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=55933

      WorldNetDaily [ far right-wing ]
      Thursday, May 31, 2007

      VP's lesbian caption ignites 'sinful' fury

      White House calls Mary Cheney, Heather Poe 'parents' of new baby


      It was just a few words in the fine print under a news release photograph of Vice President Dick Cheney, his wife Lynne and their newborn grandson, Samuel David Cheney, but it has Christian organizations praying for the sins of the administration.

      The caption included the words: "...His parents are the Cheneys' daughter Mary, and her partner, Heather Poe. White House photo by David Bohrer."

      "I say shame on the White House, shame on the president and shame on the vice president for allowing such a caption to be 'officially' added onto the White House website and such a beautiful photo of two happy grandparents and their new grandchild," said Stephen Bennett, founder of Stephen Bennett Ministries, which advocates for those who choose to leave the homosexual lifestyle.

      He also works with The Parents Group, a subscription service that offers counsel to parents and other family of those who have chosen the homosexual lifestyle.

      "I guess we can tragically and officially say both the White House and the Bush Administration have officially recognized the sinful sexual unions of homosexuals, as well as recognized and embraced the tragedy of the social experiment of homosexual parenting," he said.

      The actual caption of the photo read: "Vice President Dick Cheney and his wife, Lynne Cheney, welcomed their sixth grandchild, Samuel David Cheney, Wednesday, May 23, 2007. He weighed 8 lbs., 6 oz and was born at 9:46 a.m. at Sibley Hospital in Washington, D.C. His parents are the Cheneys' daughter Mary, and her partner, Heather Poe. White House photo by David Bohrer."

      But Bennett wondered, "Since when have two homosexual women been able to naturally procreate?"

      "Fact is Mary Cheney, the vice president's daughter – in one way or another – received a male's sperm. She is the biological mother, parent number one, and some man, somewhere out there, is Samuel David's real biological father, parent number two," he said.

      "Unlike the official White House photo caption, a man and a woman, a Daddy and a Mommy, are Samuel David Cheney's REAL biological parents," he said. "Then who is Heather Poe?"

      Simply "Mary Cheney's live-in lesbian lover," he said.

      "Everyone knows there can only be one REAL biological Mommy. We are all grown adults. Playing 'house' is a game for children, not for The White House or the vice president and his wife," he said.

      Bennett, who lived in the homosexual lifestyle for 11 years – with more than 100 partners – until he left in 1992, said what is even worse is the double standard for the Bush administration.

      "President George W. Bush held several presses conferences calling for a Federal Marriage Amendment to protect the God-ordained institution of marriage between one man and one woman, while homosexuals pushed for the union of two men or two women to be equally recognized as real 'marriage,'" Bennett said.

      "However, … Cheney clearly rebels against his superior, makes a public mockery of the president and the current administration he is supposed to represent, and clearly holds to a different set of moral standards and beliefs," Bennett said. "When President Bush stood on the victory stage several years ago after being elected into office by values voters, Mary Cheney was on stage as well with her lesbian lover, Heather Poe. It was a slap in the face to the values voters who had just elected the duo into office. That wound has never healed."

      Bennett, now married for 14 years with two children, advocates for the traditional family and the protection of children from the homosexual lifestyle.

      In a separate e-mail to his ministry supporters, he said the issue had to be addressed.

      "Please know, as commanded by scripture, we pray for our president and leaders over us and are called to submit ourselves to authority. However, if this authority is promoting SIN – are we to obey God – or man?" he asked. "We love, honor and respect our president and vice president. However, now is the time to join in fervent prayer … as pressure from homosexual groups NO DOUBT [is] influencing even the smallest of things – as a photo op. and caption placed on the photo."

      "Every child deserves a Daddy and Mommy. We understand, sometimes through death or divorce, that unit is broken – and parents do the best they could to raise and nurture their child or children. That's where we as the Body of Christ step in to help and be there for the family and child. We celebrate these individuals and families. Sometimes in a second heterosexual marriage, children are adopted. We praise these men and women who do all they could to raise these children. THESE ARE REAL PARENTS. This is NOT playing 'house,'" he said.


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      10)
      Conservative Christians Least Likely to Admit to Knowing Gays

      http://www.edgeboston.com/index.php?ch=news&sc=glbt&sc2=news&sc3=&id=20590

      EDGEBoston [lgbtq]

      Conservative Christians Least Likely to Admit to Knowing Gays

      by Kilian Melloy
      EDGE Boston Contributor
      Thursday May 24, 2007

      A new survey conducted by the Pew Research Center shows that people with openly gay family or friends are more likely by far to accept differences rooted in human sexuality than those whose relatives or friends are not openly gay.

      The survey further revealed that people with liberal Democratic leanings were more likely to know, or at any rate to admit to knowing, a gay friend or relative.

      The survey, conducted last December and January, included over 2,000 respondents. Forty-one percent said that they had a gay close friend or relative; 58 percent said they did not know anyone gay.

      "An analysis of survey results suggests that familiarity is closely linked to tolerance," the Research Center stated. "Overall, those who say they have a family member or close friend who is gay are more than twice as likely to support gay marriage as those who don’t--55 per cent to 25 per cent."

      In recent years, the topic of marriage equality has become a cultural bellwether, with deeply polarized sides taking up opposite stances, the article said, further indicating that marriage equality foes tend to belong to the Republican Party politically and Evangelical stripes of Christianity religiously. Whereas more liberal people see the issue as one of civil rights, Republicans categorize marriage equality as a danger to "traditional" family structures and mores, while Evangelicals take their opposition from Biblical passages condemning homosexuality.

      The Research Center’s statement was quoted as saying, "Percentages vary greatly by political orientation: conservative Republicans are the least likely to say they have a close gay friend or family member (33 per cent), while liberal Democrats are most likely to say so (59 per cent)."

      The survey also examined the role of race and ethnicity, reporting that white evangelicals, at 31 percent, were least likely of all to say that they had gay family members or friends. Hispanic Catholics, at 33 percent, ranked at the second least likely to say so.

      In terms of geography, Southerners saying they knew gay relatives or friends stood at 37 percent; the number was 44 percent in the west and northeast.

      Rural respondents claimed to know someone gay at a rate of 34 percent, versus 44 percent of urban residents polled.

      The overall margin of error for the survey was reported as plus or minus 3 percentage points.


      Kilian Melloy reviews media, conducts interviews, and writes commentary for EDGEBoston, where he also serves as Assistant Arts Editor.

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      11)
      Anonymous -- Floating around the Internet -->


      SOMETHING TO CONSIDER!

      A man whose family was German aristocracy prior to World War Two owned a number of large industries and estates. When asked how many German people were true Nazis, the answer he gave can guide our attitude toward fanaticism.

      "Very few people were true Nazis " he said," but many enjoyed the return of German pride, and many more were too busy to care. I was one of those who just thought the Nazis were a bunch of fools. So, the majority just sat back and let it all happen. Then, before we knew it, they owned us, and we had lost control, and the end of the world had come. My family
      lost everything. I ended up in a concentration camp and the Allies destroyed my factories."

      We are told again and again by "experts" and "talking heads" that Islam is the religion of peace, and that the vast majority of Muslims just want to live in peace.

      Although this unqualified assertion may be true, it is entirely irrelevant. It is meaningless fluff, meant to make us feel better, and meant to somehow diminish the specter of fanatics rampaging across the globe in the name of Islam. The fact is that the fanatics rule Islam at this moment in history.

      It is the fanatics who march. It is the fanatics who wage any one of 50 shooting wars worldwide. It is the fanatics who systematically slaughter Christian or tribal groups throughout Africa and are gradually taking over the entire continent in an Islamic wave. It is the fanatics who bomb, behead, murder, or honor kill. It is the fanatics who take over mosque after mosque. It is the fanatics who zealously spread the stoning and hanging of rape victims and homosexuals.

      The hard quantifiable fact is that the "peaceful majority" the "silent majority" is cowed and extraneous.

      Communist Russia comprised Russians who just wanted to live in peace, yet the Russian Communists were responsible for the murder of about 20 million people. The peaceful majority were irrelevant.

      China's huge population, it was peaceful as well, but Chinese Communists managed to kill a staggering 70 million people.

      The average Japanese individual prior to World War 2 was not a warmongering sadist. Yet, Japan murdered and slaughtered its way across South East Asia in an orgy of killing that included the systematic murder of 12 million Chinese civilians; most killed by sword, shovel and bayonet.

      And, who can forget Rwanda, which collapsed into butchery. Could it not be said that the majority of Rwandans were "peace loving"?

      History lessons are often incredibly simple and blunt, yet for all our powers of reason we often miss the most basic and uncomplicated of points:

      1 -- Peace-loving Muslims have been made irrelevant by their silence.

      2 -- Peace-loving Muslims will become our enemy if they don't speak up, because like my friend from Germany, they will awake one day and find that the fanatics own them, and the end of their world will have begun.

      3 -- Peace-loving Germans, Japanese, Chinese, Russians, Rwandans, Serbs, Afghans, Iraqis, Palestinians, Somalis, Nigerians, Algerians, and many others have died because the peaceful majority did not speak up until it was too late.

      As for us who watch it all unfold; we must pay attention to the only group that counts; the fanatics who threaten our way of life.

      Lastly, at the risk of offending, anyone who doubts that the issue is serious and just deletes this email without sending it on, can contribute to the passiveness that allows the problems to expand. So, extend yourself a bit and send this on and on and on!! Let us hope that thousands, world wide, read this - think about it - and send it on.

      ***

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Gary
      I appreciate the news posts. They are very good and help me get a lot of important news. The article on religion and gay suicide reminded me of a recent
      Message 2 of 2 , Jun 3, 2007
        I appreciate the news posts. They are very good and help me get a lot
        of important news. The article on religion and gay suicide reminded
        me of a recent editorial @ Stop Homophobia -
        http://www.geocities.com/mattsmem/editorial41.html. The editorial is
        posted here with permission.

        Editorial 41 - Cost of Homophobia

        I realize there are homophobes who base their discrimination on moral
        positions. They may feel their morality gives them the undisputed
        right to voice homophobic rage. Well, in my opinion, health trumps
        religious beliefs. Health concerns have a higher priority than
        religious beliefs. You have a right to voice your religious beliefs,
        as long as those religious beliefs do not harm the health of other
        people. Homophobia harms the health of gay and bisexual people. David
        Scasta, Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Temple
        University writes, "Gay people who are able to affirmatively
        acknowledge their sexual orientation to self and others tend to be
        happier, healthier, and better able to bond and develop a social
        network than their closeted counterparts."(1)

        As I reflect on Dr. Scasta's comments, I cannot help but wonder what
        the social, health, and economic costs of homophobia. Health costs are
        obvious. The homophobia-related cost of counselling and psychotherapy
        is high. Some people feel closeted gay people are not as creative as
        gay and bisexual people who are open about their sexuality. Lost
        creativity in art, drama, music, writing, engineering, architecture,
        business, science, research, and public administration could cost
        society millions of dollars. How many prize-winning novels or films,
        gold records, scientific or technological breakthroughs, and medical
        discoveries have we lost due to homophobia?

        _________________________

        (1) David Scasta. "Issues in Helping People Come Out." Journal of Gay
        and Lesbian Psychotherapy. Vol 2 (4), 87.
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