Arts & Entertainment
Parenting, religion and remembering Adrienne Rich
Compiled by Howard Israel
Originally printed 4/5/2012 (Issue 2014 - Between The Lines News)
"The idea that I would be immediately disappointed/angry/suicidal that my son identifies as gay offends me, both as a father and simply as a human. It seems the further we all move along into the 21st century in terms of technology, the more some parts of society regress to the 1950s - or the Victorian era - when it comes to ideas of social mores and attitudes on certain subjects: Ward Cleaver would have been angry if the Beaver had come out of the closet, so surely a father 60 years later would have the same reaction. I mean, come on, that's only common sense! Excuse me while I roll my eyes for an hour or two. I don't see how a father, or any parent, can look at their son, the one they've loved since before the child was even born, and upon hearing him say, 'Dad, I'm gay,' turn their back on him."
-Dave, husband of Huffington Post blogger, Amelia, who has blogged about their 7-year-old son identifying as gay, in his blog posting titled "A Father's Reaction to His Very Young Gay Son," http://www.huffingtonpost.com, Mar. 29.
"#2. The church's stance on homosexuality: The second most cited reason for leaving the church was that former worshipers felt homosexuals were unwelcome in the church. As recently as March 9, Pope Benedict XVI denounced what he categorized as the 'powerful' gay marriage lobby in the U.S. When those surveyed were asked if there were any religious beliefs in the Catholic Church that troubled them, a number cited views on same-sex marriage. 'The church's view on gays, same-sex marriage, women as priests and priests not marrying, to name a few,' said one respondent.' 'Hypocrisy,' said another. 'History of discrimination against women, anti-gay stance, unwelcoming attitude.' "
-Dan Merica, co-editor, CNN Belief Blog, in his blog posting titled "7 reasons Catholics leave church," about a survey of lapsed Catholics in Trenton, NJ, that asked why they are leaving the church, http://religion.blogs.cnn.com, Mar. 30. The #1 reason given by survey respondents was the church's inadequate response to clergy sex abuse.
"The devout Muslims who gathered in a Washington, D.C., conference center seemed like they could have come from any mosque. There were women in headscarves and bearded men who quoted the Quran. But something was different. While mingling over hors d'oeuvres, they discussed how to change Islam's future. A woman spoke about fighting terrorism; she had married outside the Islamic faith, which is forbidden for a Muslim woman. A Pakistani man mentioned his plans to meet friends for drinks, despite the faith's ban on alcohol. In a corner of the room, an imam in a long gray tunic counseled a young Muslim with a vexing spiritual conflict: being gay and Muslim. The imam, also gay and in a relationship, could easily sympathize with the youth's difficulties."
-Jaweed Kaleem, Huffington Post national religion reporter, in his article titled "Progressive Muslims Launch Gay-Friendly, Women-Led Mosques In Attempt To Reform American Islam," about Muslims for Progressive Values (MPV), a progressive and inclusive Muslim organization, rooted in the traditional Qur'anic ideals of human dignity and social justice, founded in 2007, http://www.huffingtonpost.com, Mar. 30.
"Adrienne Rich, a poet of towering reputation and towering rage, whose work - distinguished by an unswerving progressive vision and a dazzling, empathic ferocity - brought the oppression of women and lesbians to the forefront of poetic discourse and kept it there for nearly a half-century."
-In the obituary of Adrienne Rich titled "A Poet of Unswerving Vision at the Forefront of Feminism," one of the country's most honored and influential poets, whose finely tuned poetry explored her identity as a feminist, a lesbian and an agent for political change, http://www.nytimes.com, Mar. 28. Rich died at age 82, of complications from rheumatoid arthritis and is survived by Michelle Cliff, her partner of 36 years.