S/he said: Theodore B. Olson, Rhianna, Joe Solmonese

By |2018-01-16T09:00:12-05:00January 21st, 2010|Opinions|

Compiled by Howard Israel

“Has anyone noticed that now that lesbians and gay men have left the closet to assert their equal rights as citizens, their adversaries seem to be running for a closet of their own?”
– Linda Greenhouse, in her blog titled “Into the Closet,” about the success of opponents of same-sex marriage in persuading the Supreme Court to bar cameras from the courtroom where Proposition 8 is on trial, and the efforts of anti-gay marriage groups challenging the disclosure of financial contributions, http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com, Jan. 14.

“Many of my fellow conservatives have an almost knee-jerk hostility toward gay marriage. This does not make sense, because same-sex unions promote the values conservatives prize. Marriage is one of the basic building blocks of our neighborhoods and our nation. At its best, it is a stable bond between two individuals who work to create a loving household and a social and economic partnership. We encourage couples to marry because the commitments they make to one another provide benefits not only to themselves but also to their families and communities. Marriage requires thinking beyond one’s own needs. It transforms two individuals into a union based on shared aspirations, and in doing so establishes a formal investment in the well-being of society. The fact that individuals who happen to be gay want to share in this vital social institution is evidence that conservative ideals enjoy widespread acceptance. Conservatives should celebrate this, rather than lament it.”
– Theodore B. Olson, high-profile conservative attorney challenging Proposition 8 in the Perry v. Schwarzenegger trial, in an opinion column titled “The Conservative Case for Gay,” http://www.newsweek.com, Jan. 9.

“Continuing racial disparities in HIV infection more than two decades after the identification of the virus and availability of an accurate test are an indictment of the U.S. response to the epidemic. Existing interventions have failed to control the epidemic in African Americans in part because critical features of (socioeconomics) promote behaviors that transmit HIV and increase the risk of HIV infection, even among those who do not have high-risk behaviors. While individuals’ sexual behaviors can contribute to the disparity in HIV prevalence, these differences in individual behaviors do not fully explain the marked racial differences in HIV infection prevalence.”
– Adaora Adimora, professor of infectious diseases, University of North Carolina School of Medicine, in an article titled “Simply Black & White?,” about her study that examines factors responsible for the racial disparities in HIV infection in the U.S., http://www.hivplusmag.com, Jan/Feb 2010 issue.

“I’d love to be an assassin. Either that or a lesbian. Maybe both! Hey, a gay assassin, there’s nothing hotter than that.”
– Rihanna, pop singer, in an interview about her desire to play a provocative role in a movie, http://www.shewired.com, Dec. 8.

“Sounds ridiculous, but the venerable ‘gay panic’ defense is being tossed about surrounding the murder of an Indiana University professor, Don Belton, who was stabbed in his own kitchen at least six times with a ten-inch military knife. The assailant, Michael Griffin, is a 25-year-old ex-marine. In 2010, one might think ‘gay panic’ is as much an oxymoron as ‘jumbo shrimp’ or ‘fighting for peace.’ After all, let’s call ‘gay panic’ what it really is – an act by someone so self-loathing or insecure that they annihilate a person because they can’t come to terms with their own issues. As a friend of mine put it, yeah, that may be panic. But defensible? Hardly.”
– Michael A. Jones, in his blog titled “Why Hasn’t the “Gay Panic” Defense Died a Miserable Death?,” about the recent fatal stabbing of Indiana University Assistant Professor Don Belton, http://gayrights.change.org, Jan. 4.

“Social justice is never a march that ends on a single day, with a single decision. It is a long, hard slog that has many victories and defeats. As we started the last decade, no one could have imagined that we’d have marriage equality in Massachusetts, the first of five states to legalize same-sex nuptials.”
– Joe Solmonese, president, Human Rights Campaign, quoted in an article titled “Gays Feeling Jilted After Tough Battles for Rights,” about recent events in the epic battle over LGBT rights, http://www.sphere.com, Jan. 14.

“On Facebook, teenagers list their relationship status in many ways. Girls say they are ‘married to’ other girls, but not only are they not married (in the literal sense), they are not necessarily gay either. Sometimes a girl will list that she is married to another girl, but ‘looking for’ men. Some even insert the other girl’s surname into theirs as a middle name. It’s confusing – but then, every generation has its own rules and views of love. It made perfect sense to (my daughter), but not to me or my husband. How, then, did they differentiate between teenagers who listed, on Facebook, that they were interested in ‘men,’ interested in ‘women,’ and sometimes interested in ‘men and women’? My teenager rolled her eyes at me.”
– Candy Schulman, in her blog titled “The vocabulary of love – My 15-year-old daughter talks about marrying girlfriends on Facebook. I don’t get it, but maybe I’m not supposed to,” http://www.salon.com, Jan. 6.

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BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.