compiled by Howard Israel
“I there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer. It’s the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Latino, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled – Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been a collection of Red States and Blue States: we are, and always will be, the United States of America.”
– President-elect Barack Obama, in his victory speech in Chicago’s Grant Park, http://www.marketwatch.com, Nov. 5.
“If we could get it together and learn to accept one another, we could change the world. Think about it. In every race and in every culture there are those like us and even within our infighting we come together blind to race and fight to purge the male/female stereotype. We bring together not only the male and the female but also the various races and cultures. Almost as if we are the one constant in the diverse peoples of the world that make them all essentially the same. They all have us and most all of them despise us as freaks.”
– Nick, commenting on an online open forum titled “Do We Have a ‘Gay Lifestyle?’,” http://www.QueersUnited.blogspot.com, Nov. 1.
“To the Utah-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to the New Haven, Conn.-based Knights of Columbus, to the Tupelo, Miss.-based American Family Association, to the Washington, D.C.-based Concerned Women for America, to the Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Focus on the Family, and to all the rest of those warped little minds that incessantly whine that what plays in California would never play on Main Street, USA, I say who cares? Get the Hell out of California! Pack up your hate-money, your lies and your Bibles and head back to your own dried-up little wastelands, where you can inflict your Bronze Age pettiness on people who share your so-called values.”
– Mike Tidmus, on his blog, in comments addressed to out-of-state conservatives and the radical religious right groups who have poured money into the campaign to ban same-sex marriage in California, http://www.MikeTidmus.com, Oct. 20.
“The suffering of gay people who had been bullied is one of Ireland’s untold stories. Realizing you are gay and feeling like there was something wrong with you could be a diabolically lonely experience. Celebrating and respecting diversity among young people is at the heart of this important forum. Homophobic bullying continues to be a society-wide issue, including in our schools, and the link between it and suicide sends a clear message that this trend must be reversed. By working together, by refusing to go along with loudly-voiced prejudices, we can overcome the bias and hostility experienced by many young gay people throughout the country. No one should have to suffer on account of their sexual orientation.”
– Irish President Mary McAleese, in an address during a gay youth forum that was organized by Belong To, an organization which supports LGBT young people between the ages of 14 and 23, IrishTimes.com, Oct. 31. LGBT groups from around Ireland traveled to the forum to meet President McAleese.
“One reason I favor marriage equality is that the simple public fact of gay married couples will in itself teach something about the reality of gay people and our lives – without any school or parent having to say a thing. It gives us a way to talk about gay couples for the first time in human history without talking about sex acts. Now, there’s nothing wrong with sodomy, in my view. But it no more defines gay people than it defines straight people (and straight people’s sex lives are now overwhelmingly sodomitic in nature – i.e. non-reproductive).”
– Andrew Sullivan, writing on his blog, The Daily Dish, about gay marriage as a powerful force in changing perceptions about gay people, titled “The Right To Discriminate,” http://www.andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com, Oct. 29.
“It’s a particularly emotional issue, where both sides say the quality of children’s lives is at risk. Advocates of gay adoption, joined by child welfare groups and the American Academy of Pediatrics, argue that it’s a moral imperative to provide more of the nation’s 500,000 foster care kids with stable homes. No credible evidence shows that having gay parents harms children, they say, and a ban only prevents judges from taking the child’s best interests into account.”
– In an article about gay adoption titled “Emerging Gay Adoption Fight Shares Battle Lines of Same-Sex Marriage Debate,” U.S. News & World Report, Oct. 31.
“Prop 8 rests on the same logic that prohibited interracial marriages, a premise that the California Supreme Court cited in its ruling in favor of legalizing same-sex marriages. Slavery and antebellum patriarchy were rooted in rigid definitions of family and marriage aimed at preserving property rights, lines of descent and white purity. This legacy continues to influence the gender hierarchies underlying so-called traditional family structures and to police families that aren’t nuclear or heterosexual. As a black atheist and parent, I want my seven-month-old daughter to grow up in a culture where – gay, straight or bi – her entire range of personhood, love and commitment to another human being is not legally bound by the Paleolithic mores of religious fundamentalism.”
– Sikivu Hutchinson, in a commentary titled “The Moral Choice: Blacks, Homophobia and Proposition 8”, asserting why blacks should oppose California’s Prop. 8 that would ban same-sex marriage, http://www.BlackFemLens.org, Oct. 27.
“This reduced action of the male sex hormone may have an effect on gender development in the womb. We think that these genetic differences might reduce testosterone action and under masculinise the brain during fetal development. There is a social stigma that transsexualism is simply a lifestyle choice, however our findings support a biological basis of how gender identity develops.”
– Lauren Hare, researcher at Prince Henry’s Institute of Medical Research in Australia, commenting on a recent study that has identified a significant link between a gene involved in testosterone action and male-to-female transsexualism, BBC News, Oct. 26.
“It just so happens that I’m straight (not that there’s anything wrong with that), and yet I think it’s crucial that same-sex couples enjoy full marriage equality – and not just “civil unions.” Why the unyielding stance, given that the whole thing will never affect me directly? It’s the underlying principle at stake that’s so important. Either the law treats all citizens the same, regardless of race, sex, creed, how they identify themselves or whom they happen to love, or it doesn’t. If it doesn’t, then my own rights are in no way secure.”
– Joshua Holland, in a column titled “Why Straight People Need to Get into the Fight for Marriage Equality”, http://www.AlterNet.org, Oct. 28.