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LGBT Activism

Survey: 2.3% of Americans Are Gay or Bisexual

 

Via the Washington Post:

Less than 3 percent of the U.S. population identify themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday in the first large-scale government survey measuring Americans’ sexual orientation. The National Health Interview Survey, which is the government’s premier tool for annually assessing Americans’ health and behaviors, found that 1.6 percent of adults self-identify as gay or lesbian, and 0.7 percent consider themselves bisexual. The overwhelming majority of adults, 96.6 percent, labeled themselves as straight in the 2013 survey. An additional 1.1 percent declined to answer, responded “I don’t know the answer” or said they were “something else.” The figures offered a slightly smaller assessment of the size of the gay, lesbian and bisexual population than other surveys, which have pegged the overall proportion at closer to 3.5 or 4 percent. In particular, the estimate for bisexuals was lower than in some other surveys.

We all know what “I don't know the answer” means :)

Meanwhile, anti-gays like Bryan Fischer uses such statistices to substantiate discrimination. Via Gay Star News:

US pundit Bryan Fischer is confused why Christians permit a 'tiny little minority' of gay people to have so much power.

According to Right Wing Watch, the director of issues analysis for the American Family Association discussed yesterday, 15 July, the data released by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) that 3.4% of those over 18 identified as something other than heterosexual.

'They are belligerent, they are intolerant, they are bullies,' Fischer insisted as reported by Right Wing Watch.

'And we have been meekly capitulating to this tiny little cluster of belligerent bullies now for a couple of decades and it's time that we stop with all of that,' the activist continued.

Fischer urged Christians to put a halt to 'sexual deviancy' by telling the LGBTI community to 'turn yourself over to God.'

“It's almost comical that we have allowed these people to have so much power in our culture where they can force their deviant lifestyle into the public sphere and compel so many sectors of society to recognize this and to celebrate it as some kind of normal lifestyle,' he added.

More to come.

 

Watch: Gay Teacher Shows Anti-Bullying Film, Becomes a Victim Of Faith-Based Bullying

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Jeremy Rhoden

Following a spate of fights in his school this Spring, an openly gay teacher in the small conservative community of Palatka, Florida ignited controversy when he showed anti-LGBT bullying film “Love Is All You Need?” to his students.

“Love Is All You Need?” is based on the premise of a “reversed world” where social roles are inverted – “gay” is “straight” and “straight” is “gay”: a twelve year old girl is bullied for liking a boy in her school.

Outraged parents claimed the film would make their kids gay and called for the teacher’s firing. Local pastors went ballistic. “That video had nothing to do with bullying. … It had to do with a militant sodomite agenda,” said John Iskat, pastor of Faith Baptist Church, who was among a half-dozen pastors who spoke out against the film at a March 4 county School Board meeting. [read the full Florida Times article here.]

The Palatka High teacher, Jeremy Rhoden, lost his job: the city did not renew his contract. The school’s principle, Mary Beth Headstrom, is currently on suspension without pay for supporting the film; her contract is under threat of not being renewed for next year.

“Love Is All You Need?” was released as a 20-minute short in 2011. Since then, “Love Is All You Need?” has racked up more than 30 short film accolades, including 13 film festival awards, been translated into 15 languages, and – as a viral video sensation – has been viewed (on various platforms) by over 30 million views to date. (Watch the original short film here.)

“Love Is All You Need?” has the support of GLSEN (Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network) – marking the first time the organization has partnered with a production company.

Encouraged by the success of the short, writer and director Kim Rocco Shields is raising funds and resources via crowdsourcing platform Indiegogo (deadline July 2) to make the feature film version of “Love Is All You Need.” “We’re hoping by making a feature we can go theatrical and hit more audiences and effect more people worldwide,” she says.

Shields has pledged to dedicate a percentage of the film’s proceeds to anti-bullying programs in Palatka.

Donate by July 2 at www.icanstopbullying.com.

Watch below…

 

Columbia, Kellogg, and Ross Win Awards for Most LGBT-Inclusive Business Schools in Annual Friendfactor MBA Ally Challenge

Columbia Business School

Columbia Business School

As an MBA holder myself, this news is good news but where is UCLA (my alma mater)?

Friendfactor, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality organization for straight friends, today announced the winners of its 2nd annual MBA Ally Challenge. Columbia Business School came in first place, with the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan earning second and third respectively. The Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia received the Most Improved award.

“This year we’ve seen some of the most creative and effective initiatives ever among our competing schools,” said Joanne Sprague, Re-Founder and CEO of Friendfactor. “Columbia’s standout results, with over 60% of their student body engaged as active allies to the LGBT community, have placed their school’s ally initiative at the top of the list for the 2nd year running. We congratulate Columbia on this year’s stellar performance and all 12 of our participating programs for fostering an open and welcoming campus environment for all students.”

The Friendfactor MBA Ally Challenge is a friendly competition among business schools to build the largest and most impactful ally initiatives they can over the course of the school year. Participating schools are evaluated on three criteria including percentage of the student body participating, number of ally-focused events or campaigns executed, and outcomes of a campus inclusion survey that measures LGBT awareness and campus climate. Twelve of Businessweek’s top 20 US business schools participated in the 2013-2014 Challenge, engaging over 4,300 MBA students and generating more than 100 events and campaigns.

As a result, campus culture improved such that 62% of LGBT students at the participating schools reported feeling comfortable being out to everyone on campus at the end of the year – an increase of nearly 50% from the 42% who were fully out at the beginning of the year, and far above the national workplace average of 47% as reported by the Human Rights Campaign.

“An overwhelming plurality of straight people support LGBT equality, but very few turn that support into action to bring about change and acceptance in our culture. The participants in the MBA Ally Challenge are turning these passive supporters into active allies, and they’re ushering in a new generation of campus and workplace culture that will enable every American to bring their full self to work,” concluded Ms. Sprague.

The winners of the MBA Ally Challenges will be honored, alongside the winners of Friendfactor’s new Workplace Ally Challenge, at the first annual Ally Challenge Awards Dinner in San Francisco on July 26. The Workplace Ally Challenge winners will be announced in mid-July. Additional information and tickets for the awards dinner can be purchased at www.friendfactor.org/awardsdinner.

 

Gay Pride: California Assembly Honors George Takei and Other LGBT Leaders

Social Star Awards Day-1

The California State Legislature held a ceremony today that was sponsored by the California Legislative Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Caucus honoring a number of leaders in the LGBT community:

The 2014 LGBT Caucus Pride Month honorees include:
Azature, Fashion and Jewelry Designer
Donna Brown and Colleen Foster, Stockton LGBT Leaders
Todd Gloria, San Diego City Council Member
Kate Kendell, Executive Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights
Jewels, Long Beach LGBT Community Leader
Bernard Mayes, Founder of the San Francisco Suicide Prevention Hotline and LGBT Advocate
Tracie Jada O’Brien, Transgender and HIV/AIDs Activist
George Takei, Actor, Writer and Civil Rights Activist
Rick Wells, President and COO of Golden State Warriors Team
Tom Ammiano, Assemblymember (17th District)
John A. Pérez, First Elected Gay Speaker of the Assembly (53rd District)

It is also interesting to note that Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins is the first lesbian to lead a house of the California legislature and was sworn in in May.

June has been declared LGBT Pride Month by President Barack Obama and Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. This month also marks 45 years since the Stonewall protests, which triggered the modern civil rights movement for the LGBT community.

Via CA.gov press release

Lord John Browne: Confessions of a Gay Ex-CEO

Former BP CEO Lord John Browne

Former BP CEO Lord John Browne

Former BP executive John Browne has written an article at Fortune about his life in the corporate closet. He is a former CEO of BP sand author of the book Glass Closet: Why Coming Out is Good Business:

Looking back now, I wish I had been brave enough to come out earlier. Here’s how companies can encourage a culture of openness.

Over the course of my career at BP, from trainee to chief executive, I was frequently asked whether I had a girlfriend or whether I was married. People assumed that I was a bachelor who had not yet met the right woman. It was a fair assumption, for an obvious reason: Most people are straight. But for those who remain in the closet, the assumption of heterosexuality can be highly damaging. It reinforces their feeling that being gay is something out of the ordinary, something that would put them at a disadvantage in their personal and professional lives, and something that is probably best kept hidden.

The assumption of heterosexuality is one of the reasons that many people in business and in other sectors continue to lead hidden lives. I have spent the past 18 months conducting interviews for my book, The Glass Closet: Why Coming Out Is Good Business, about the risks and rewards of coming out in business. I encountered men and women who, despite living in an age of diversity targets, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender corporate networks and equal marriage, are still afraid of the consequences of coming out. Young executives in their 20’s should be free of the fears that plagued me for over 40 years, but the evidence suggests that many of them are not.

Through four decades at BP, I kept my private life separate from my business life. As a young professional in the oil industry, my career was going in the right direction, and I saw absolutely no purpose in coming out. The corporate ladder was slippery enough on its own, without complicating things by throwing oil on the rungs. By the time I was chief executive, I was worried that any disclosure would damage critical business relationships, particularly those in the Middle East. In countries where homosexuality is illegal, my public profile probably would have protected me, but my sexuality could have had unknown and unlimited consequences on BP’s businesses.

Looking back now, and with the enormous benefit of hindsight, I wish I had been brave enough to come out earlier. The reactions of friends and colleagues have shown that my worst fears would not have come true. But my desire to keep my private life led me to make some terrible errors of personal judgement, and I had no choice but to resign from the company that had structured my entire professional life. I was not a victim, and I made some bad choices that had traumatic consequences.

Browne’s article outlines steps for straight leaders can take to transform LGBT lives in corporate America, including setting the right direction with equal treatment, sending positive messages, and participating in programs that encourage straight employees to give their own support for LGBT inclusion.

And a note to the religious right – this isn’t indoctrination – it is acknowledgment that we exist.

Read the full article here.

 

Barbwire: Believes It Has Nailed How Homosexuals Harm Children

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If you haven’t checked out Barbwire, wing nut Matt Barber’s new anti-everything-not-Christian site, it is worth a review to brighten your day and make you chuckle. Unfortunately, there are people out there who likely believe that the site is a news source. Stories like this one debunk that belief:

“12 WAYS HOMOSEXUAL ADULTS ENDANGER CHILDREN”

Of course, it is by Linda Harvey about whom we write often here at DanNation:

I write this article with great sadness, because every day that goes by means more vulnerable children are deceived, corrupted and enticed down roads that take them far, far from their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Yet America’s attitude, even that of the Christian church, seems to be, “Oh, well– as long as they play the right sports and have lots of friends on Facebook!” But what happens to our sons and daughters when we don’t confront and expose this danger?

Every time I think of quitting this difficult battle, the Lord gently reminds me about the children. Libertarians act as if all humans are over the age of eighteen, but every behavior we tolerate as adults trickles down to impressionable children. The public debate about “gay rights” often forgets the youngest victims of the deception and the impact on their unfolding lives. We have to keep trying to expose the problems presented by homosexual political activism even as we try to rescue those caught up in this behavior.

Harvey continues by listing her own ‘top 12′ debunked and/or opinionated list of reasons:

  1. Adults proudly living a homosexual life are disastrous role models (EDITOR NOTE: Yes – I have an Ivy League education, MBA from a top school, a long relationship and a great career in tech – that makes me a disastrous role model)
  2. Children living a home headed by homosexual adults are exposed to the same poor examples in triple intensity and intimacy (EDITOR NOTE: I don’t even get this one)
  3. Transvestite men or “drag king” women are deeply disturbing to children (EDITOR NOTE: I thought clowns were deeply disturbing to children)
  4. Students are sometimes blank slates for the indoctrination plans of homosexual political activists, teachers and others (EDITOR NOTE: Does anyone know when the next indoctrination training camp takes place?)
  5. Now to the dynamite question: yes, some homosexually-identified adults do have sex with underage teens and even children. (EDITOR NOTE: yes, some heterosexually-identified adults do have sex with underage teens and even children – your point?)

My fingers are tired. You can check out the other seven endangering traits here.

 

RIP: Legendary Author and Poet Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

mayaangelou

The world will miss poet, author and activist Maya Angelou, who passed away today at her home in North Carolina.

The 86-year-old was a novelist, actress, professor, singer, dancer and activist. In 2010, President Barack Obama named her the recipient of the Medal of Freedom, the country’s highest civilian honor.

In honor of Maya, here is a poem she wrote upon Nelson Mandela’s death last year:

And here’s a transcript of the entire poem:

His day is done.
Is done.
The news came on the wings of a wind
Reluctant to carry its burden.
Nelson Mandela’s day is done.
The news, expected and still unwelcome
Reached us in the United States and suddenly
Our world became somber.
Our skies were leadened
His day is done.
We see you, South African people
Standing speechless at the slamming
Of that final door
Through which no traveler returns.
Our spirits reach out to you
Bantu, Zulu, Xhosa, Boer
We think of you
And your Son of Africa,
Your Father
Your One More Wonder of the World.
We send our souls to you
As you reflect upon
Your David armed with
A mere stone facing down
The Mighty Goliath,
Man of strength Gideon,
Emerging triumphant
Although born into the brutal embrace of Apartheid
Scarred by the savage atmosphere of racism,
Unjustly imprisoned
In the bloody maws of South African dungeons.
Would the man survive?
Could the man survive?
His answer strengthened men and women
Around the world.
In the Alamo in San Antonio, TX
On the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco,
In Chicago’s loop
In New Orleans Mardi Gras
In New York City’s Times Square
We watched as the hope of Africa sprang
Through the prison’s doors
His stupendous heart in tact
His gargantuan will
Hale and hearty
He had not been crippled by brutes
Nor was his passion for the rights
Of human beings
Diminished by twenty-seven years of imprisonment
Even here in America
We felt the cool
Refreshing breeze of freedom
When Nelson Mandela took
The seat of the Presidency
In his Country
Where formally he was not even allowed to vote
We were enlarged by tears of pride
As we saw Nelson Mandela’s
Former prison guards
Invited, courteously, by him to watch
From the front rows
His inauguration.
We saw him accept
The world’s award in Norway
With the grace and gratitude
Of the Solon in Ancient Roman Courts
And the confidence of African Chiefs
From ancient royal stools.
No sun outlasts its sunset
But will rise again
And bring the dawn
Yes, Mandela’s day is done,
Yet we, his inheritors
Will open the gates wider
For reconciliation and we will respond
Generously to the cries
Of the Blacks and Whites,
The Asian, the Hispanic,
The poor who live piteously
On the floor of our planet
He has offered us understanding
We will not withhold forgiveness
Even from those who do not ask
Nelson Mandela’s day is done
We confess it in tearful voices
Yet we lift our own to say
Thank You.
Thank You, Our Gideon.
Thank You, Our David.
Our great courageous man
We will not forget you
We will not dishonor you
We will remember and be glad
That you lived among us
That you taught us
And
That you loved us
All!

 

This Young and HIV+ Gay Man May Run For Florida House

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While he doesn’t even look like he’s left his twink days behind him, Aaron Darr is ready to step up to the plate as he mulls a run for the Florida House.

“Young people have very, very powerful voices,” Darr says. “We just need to speak up.”

Queerty reports:

The 23-year-old Democrat has worked on campaigns for Hillary Clinton and Anthony Wiener. He’s currently living in Largo, Florida, where he’s weighing a 2016 run for the Florida House of Representatives in District 66.

If elected, he will be the youngest person, the third openly gay person and the first openly HIV-positive person ever elected to a district office in the state of Florida.

But, does he have a chance of winning?

You have to play a little more moderate down here. I was born and raised Baptist for 19 years of my life, so I understand the views and opinions of those with whom I disagree. I understand them and I respect them. But I find that the more you educate people on these things called math, science, and facts, I think you can persuade them to come around and swing to your view.

If I do run, I’m going to win. I really do think it’s possible. And I’m going to try my darnedest. I think that it’s very important that LGBT people run for office. My idol is Harvey Milk. Right now we do not have a Harvey Milk, and we need a Harvey Milk. Someone in the gay community needs to step up and step forward and speak on all of our behalves.

If I’m elected, I will be the third LGBT person elected to a statewide office in the state of Florida, I will be the first openly HIV-positive person, and I would be the youngest person elected.

Let’s hope this amazing young man can make a difference for his generation. Be sure to read the full interview at Queerty.

aaron-darr-hillary-clinton-360x480

Check Out These Interactive LGBT Rights Maps

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By popular demand, Equaldex has introduced United States maps showing the legal status of each LGBT issue, in addition to its global maps.

You can now view the status of gay marriage, same-sex adoption, discrimination protection, the ability to change your legal gender, and conversion therapy.

The feature also allows you to view the most recent law changes for each issue within the United States.

Note that the data entered by users is still being verified and edited by users. If you see something inaccurate or missing, please sign up to Equaldex and contribute!

Since Equaldex’s launch in February, this has been one of Equaldex’s most highly requested feature. Last month, Equaldex launched a new interactive visualization of the global opinion of homosexuality.

Equaldex will soon be expanding to other countries. Which countries would you like to see added?