Today in My History
IN MY OPINION
DMTC at 25 (feature)
Main Stage Theatre/Dance Festival
Books Read in 2009
"Sundays at Tiffany's"
Recipes for Cousins Day Drinks
VIDEO OF THE DAY / WEEK / WHATEVER
and on You Tube
22 April 2009
The print news and especially video news is all abuzz with Miss California's loss of the Miss U.S.A. title, presumably because of her answer about gay marriage posed by one of the judges, Perez Hilton.
The Noble Pig, a site more noted for its photography and recipes than political controversy, posted an entry entitled "Should Personal Biases Be Allowed?" which has, not surprisingly, sparked a number of entries regarding the whole brouhaha. The reaction seemed to be mixed among those who felt that Miss California had a right to express her opinion and that it shouldn't be considered in the vote of the judges (then why do they ask questions of the candidates? She wasn't the only one to be asked a political question), those who felt that it was right that they deny her the crown because of her opinions, and those who felt that Hilton shouldn't have asked it in the first place.
Some of the more intense comments included:
It's the one time I wish I had actually watched the show so I could remember the other political questions that were asked, since so many seemed to feel Hilton was out of line asking the question. (Apparently he had cleared the question with the powers that be beforehand, however.)
But, as always, the lack of empathy for gay people who are the victims of this country's short-sighted opinions about equal rights came to the fore.
Whenever I'm confronted with people who want gay people to disappear, or who want to put them in a box, without the rights that straight people enjoy, or who dismiss the whole issue as an immoral "choice," and thus not worth talking about, I think about Bill Clayton and all of the other gay kids who chose to end their lives rather than face a lifetime of discrimination and possible violence.
And then this morning I was sent a link to a story by Sacramento News and Review reporter, Kel Munger about eleven-year old Jaheem Herrera.
Young Jaheem Herreras parents say he was called
gay and a snitch (for reporting his abuse) on a daily basis as
part of the harassment that led him to take his own life. His death comes just a few weeks
after the similar bullying-induced suicide of 11-year-old Carl
Jaheem Herrera and Carl Walker-Hoover and Bill Clayton are the reason why it's important to take the answers of a silly beauty pageant contestant into consideration. Because if it's OK to set aside the ideas of someone who believes in dividing us into "us" and "them," making it OK to harass, bully, and beat "them" because they aren't as good as "us," then we are minimized, yet again, as human beings.
The sooner straight America understands that there is no "gay agenda" other than gay people wanting to live their lives in peace like their straight neighbors, the sooner we can get on with the more serious business of this country.
In one of those serendipitous bits of coincidence, as I was writing this, I received an e-mail informing me that congress will vote next week on the hate crimes bill that would give LGBT people the protections they need and deserve, and honor the memory of Matthew Shepard, murdered in Laramie, Wyoming ten years ago. During committee hearings, some lawmakers will be trying to derail the bill with "poison pill" amendments.
Here is a page where you can find a video made by Judy Shepard and a place where you can send a letter to your Congressperson asking for their support for the hate crimes bill. Do your bit to protect kids like Jaheem Herrera and Carl Walker,
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Naptime. It always amazes me that these 4 puppies
MILES TO NOWHERE: 104 miles