What does my bedroom have to do with anything?

I am so tired of listening to the religious right argue that what goes on my bedroom justifies their attacks on my personal freedom and the right to be treated like every other American. What exactly is it about my life that is so scary to them? I mean, do they think that I lay around naked all day long having sex and trying to think of ways to turn little heterosexuals into gays or lesbians? Get real.

I’m a travel nurse. I work away from my home for months at a time. I do this to try and build a life and financial freedom with the person that I love, who happens to be a woman. I work in Emergency departments from California to New York, and have had to trade being at home with my family for making a living that can pull us up into the middle class. My partner is a police officer. She spends her time at work protecting the people that live in our community and risking her life to do it.

Our intimate times consist of conversations on the telephone for the most part, and then two or three times a year we get to spend a few weeks together. Even then, she’s working and I’m either working locally or preparing to leave on assignment again. We pass each other in the hallway between shifts, and when we’re lucky, we may actually catch an hour or two to sit on the couch and watch a movie or even talk face to face. When we do get to actually occupy the bed at the same time, we’re usually too tired to do anything other than sleep.
On the rare occasion when we do manage to have a sexually intimate moment, it’s behind closed doors and not at all like they make it look in heterosexual porn movies, which by the way seem obsessed with lesbian sex. We work hard. We pay taxes. We support our community. We watch out for our neighbors. So when the religious right says that we don’t have the right to have our relationship protected and respected the same as theirs, what does my bedroom have to do with it? If you ask me, they’re the ones who are obsessed with my sex life, not me. Why is that? I mean, honestly, I couldn’t care less what Falwell or Dobson do in their bedrooms. I don’t even want to know. Let’s face it, Jim Baker’s and Jimmy Swaggart’s sexual escapades were way more information than I needed in my busy life.

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Mohler’s Little Moment of Acceptance

Changing you own opinions about something is at best, difficult. In some cases, where the opinion is a part of a deeply held belief system, it’s more than hard. It can challenge your views of the world, how you see yourself fitting into that world, and even your faith in God. It rarely occurs in one giant leap, where you cast aside beliefs that you’ve grown up with and latch on to an entirely new way of looking at something. Change happens in tiny moments of acceptance. These tiny moments build until you are faced with an obstacle of belief that no longer makes sense and can’t be justified based on what you know to be true. In that instant, you have to make a decision. You move forward, accepting that your views must change in order to include these new facts or beliefs, or you deny them and fall back on your old ideas.

We are beginning to see evidence of change even in the deepest recesses of our opposition. For such a long time, the conservative right has made a stand against science on many issues. They maintain that man emerged on the planet just a few thousand years ago, against all scientific evidence that man has evolved over the ages. They demand that creationism be taught as a SCIENCE in schools, not satisfied that it be discussed as a religious belief. They deny the evidence of the age of the planet and the universe itself, again in order to reconcile their belief that the biblical account of the creation of the heavens and the earth is fact, rather than a religious belief.

But recently, one well known conservative leader took a giant step of acceptance. The Rev. R. Albert Mohler Jr., one of the country’s pre-eminent evangelical leaders, admitted in an article earlier this month, that scientific research “points to some level of biological causation” for homosexuality. Now when those of us who are gay and lesbians read the full text of this article, it’s wildly offensive. He asserts that he would endorse prenatal hormonal treatment, if such a technology were developed, to reverse homosexuality. However, you can get past the abrasiveness of that statement and look deeper, this article is actually a step forward in conservative thinking. It’s a moment of acceptance in a long road toward change.

Conservative religious groups have long maintained that being gay was a matter of choice, and that homosexuality could be “overcome” with counseling and prayer. Even when every respected psychological, psychiatric, and medical organization stated that not only was sexual identity not a matter of choice, but denial of ones identity was destructive to the person – the religious right ignored the science and found fringe practitioners to back their own views. This acceptance that sexual identity is a biologically predetermined part of every human being is a giant step toward change, although I doubt he sees it that way.

What will their justification be for persecuting us, when even they have to admit that we are exactly as God made us? If I am as God made me, how can what I am be something that God does not love? When they accept that I can’t change the fact that I was born a lesbian, have always been a lesbian (even before I knew exactly what that was), and have no more control over that part of myself than I do the color of my eyes and hair – then maybe they’ll accept the idea that I shouldn’t have to be treated as less of a human being because I accept who I was born to be.

Don’t get me wrong! I hate the comments he makes about treating fetus’ prior to birth in order to make them heterosexual. I hate it the same way I hate hearing people talk about predetermining fetal sex, or trying to genetically enhance a fetus. But, I do acknowledge that even his acceptance that there MIGHT be a biological basis for sexual identity is a step in our direction. No matter how much back stepping he’s trying to do now.

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Ann Coulter (Can I use the “B” Word?)

If you ever wanted to know just how deeply divided this country really is when it comes to the rights of gay and lesbian Americans to live their lives without discrimination, just do a google news search with the name “Ann Coulter” in it. You’ll see hundreds of items pop up with view points from both sides of the fence and a few that ride the fence as well. What’s interesting about this issue to me, is that it doesn’t represent a specific “issue” at all, it addresses how gay and lesbians are treated at a more basic level. It isn’t about our right to work (which many of us still don’t have – you can still be fired for being gay in a lot of states). It isn’t about our right to be at our partner’s bedside when they are ill (which many states have no provision for). It isn’t about our right to the same tax breaks that heterosexual couples get (even if they aren’t legally married). It isn’t about our right to anything at all, except respect as human beings.

Look recently at the use of the “N” word by a popular comedian in a club during his stand up routine. You didn’t see anyone defending his use of that word. But wait, the conservative right says that we aren’t allowed to compare the use of degrading terms used to humiliate a black person, and a degrading term used to humiliate a gay person. They say that Ann Coulter calling someone a faggot, can’t be compared to someone being called the N-word. The conservative right works very hard making sure no one publicly notes any similarities between the civil rights of a black person, and the civil rights of a gay person.

The American Daily web site has an article on it’s site by J. Matt Barber today. This article says “By comparison, homosexuality is rooted in disordered, unhealthy and changeable behaviors that have – prior to the onset of social post-modernism – been considered both immoral and repulsive. Being black is rooted in, well, being black.” That’s the kind of reasoning we’re dealing with. He’s basically saying that you shouldn’t discriminate against black people because they can’t help being born black, not because they are no different from him and deserve the same respect and dignity of life as he does without having to be compared to others as a measure of their worth. If you’d like to read the entire article you can find it at http://www.americandaily.com/article/17916. It would be a pretty funny read except for one thing, he’s not joking.

The conservatives are circling the wagons, with excuses that range from “it was only a joke” to “they call themselves faggots all the time.” Let me tell you something right now. I have never called myself or a friend a faggot. Never. Not once. I never would and I won’t put up with you calling me one either.

I hope these ridiculous, right wing, nut jobs just keep talking because no one can point out their bigotry better than they do themselves. It just amuses me at how upset they get when all we do is point it out to them. It’s a shame that using the “B” word to describe Ann Coulter isn’t an insult to her at all (No, not THAT “B” word) – Bigot!

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Ann Coulter’s “Faggot” Comment

John Edward’s may be too nice a guy. When asked about his take on Coulter, Edwards replied: “Don’t have one. Don’t have anything to say about her.” I respect his ability to keep his opinion about her to himself, especially when she called him a “faggot”. Of course she did it in a setting where she knew it was acceptable – The Conservative Political Action Conference. Making a gay or lesbian slur in that room is about as risky as using the “N” word at a KKK meeting. Not only did no one inside the room stand up and denounce the statement immediately, but there was laughter throughout the room. If there was ever any doubt in anyone’s mind about how far away from a real understanding between the LGBT community and the conservative right, there shouldn’t be now. The laughter in the room demonstrates the kind of people that the Conservative Political Action Conference respects enough to have presenting to them, and the kind of people they represent – Hate filled biggots

I on the other hand am not a particularly nice person in the face of comments that are directed at me with that kind of hate, and her use of the term may have been AIMED at Edwards, but it was directed at all of us in the Gay and Lesbian community. I find Ann Couter to be a fine representative of the CPAC, which is about as big an insult as I can think of. Now I want to watch where the CPAC throws their support, there my friends, is where the real story is. Where does all the money and influence that CPAC has to offer go? Which candidate or candidates share their “sense of humor”?

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