Friday, July 27, 2012

Dear Buffalo Sabres, What the Fuck Are You Doing?

Earlier today I retweeted this link about a woman's experiences working with the Salvation Army, and then being dismissed for admitting to being bisexual (even though she is married to a male partner and has a child).  I'm not going to get into the particulars of the story, of which there are many, as it would take me significantly off course.  But there is one specific point I want to touch on.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The National Organization for Marriage's Call for "Corporate Neutrality"

If you haven't been keeping track, NOM has endorsed multiple boycotts of companies that have come out in support of the LGBT community (and in particular Marriage Equality), like Starbucks and General Mills.  NOM's position is that corporate entities, as they serve many people who hold a variety of viewpoints, should not take sides in the marriage debate.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Bigotry in Niagara Falls - The Response

Editor's Note: I write for other blogs that do not exclusively cover LGBT issues.  Occasionally there is some overlap and in those cases I like to post in as many places as are applicable.  This is one of those instances.

In case you haven't seen it (part II), the Niagara Falls Reporter has painted itself as a victim, an ardent defender of free speech, and released a response to their anti-gay article that went viral last week. (You can read the article as well as my initial response here.)

Thursday, July 19, 2012

A Beginner's Guide to Bondage

With 50 Shades of Gray's meteoric rise in popularity and this oft-ridiculed article from Cosmo, I thought I would write a real introduction to the world of BDSM (Bondage, Domination, Sadism, and Masochism), one coming from someone in the lifestyle that stands a chance of being useful to actual people.

I already did a big rundown of various BDSM terminology and aspects here, (note: you should probably tackle that after you read this entry) but I fear that might turn off some of the more softcore individuals that are intimidated by even just the term 'Bondage,' let alone actual implements.  It can be difficult, with the wide world of BDSM, to figure out exactly where to start.  That's what this is for.

Right away I will make the disclaimer that I have not read the aforementioned novel, so I can't speak directly to the scenes in the book, but I do live in a BDSM-lifestyle relationship and have accumulated a lot of experience, so I will be speaking from that.

Bigotry in Niagara Falls

If you haven't heard about it yet (and you will eventually), a Niagara Falls Reporter writer, Lenny Palumbo, has published an article containing some damning anti-gay language. Just in case the Falls Reporter wants to pull this article and pretend this never happened, I have taken the liberty of copying the text of the article and saving it here.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Shameless Self-Promotion for Those that Enjoy LGBT Fiction

A little over a year ago I wrote a short novel called Skankarella.  The premise was simple; what if a lesbian was trapped in the house of a brutal religious family like Cinderella?  I wanted to make sure I featured a title character that has positive attributes beyond beauty and blonde hair (good job Disney), like intelligence, artistic talent, nerdiness, and just so happens to be attracted to women.

Monday, July 16, 2012

The Curvy Movement

Sometimes I don’t know what our problem is in regards to physical attractiveness.  We all seem to have this narrow definition of what is attractive, and fuck anyone who has a different opinion, or anyone who lives outside that scale of attractiveness.  Which is screwed because a lot of us have a very narrow definition in what we like physically in another person.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

A Short Recap of the Rochester Pride Parade and Festival

Yesterday I marched in the Rochester (NY) Pride Parade with The Self Made Men a Rochester based group that Adam has been involved with that promotes equality through transgender education.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Hockey Player Cam Janssen Makes Dumb Comments

In case you missed it, a video was released of Cam Janssen, former Blue, current Devil, and St. Louis native appearing on the Thom and Jeff Show out of 105.7 The Point in St. Louis. I'd post video of the show, but it has been yanked off YouTube and other video sites, presumably because of some of the comments Janssen made.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The National Organization for Marriage and Marginalizing LGBT

Recently several companies have either made shows of public support for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered individuals or donated money to pro-LGBT causes.  Understandably this has raised the ire of groups that spend millions of dollars fighting against rights for LGBT individuals.  However, it has raised a very selective ire.  Allow me to explain.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

War of Words: Minnesota for Marriage’s Aversion to Truth

In addition to the religious right’s fight to get an anti-gay amendment passed in Minnesota, there is a second battle, this one over the official title of said amendment.  Two weeks ago Minnesota Secretary of State Mark Ritchie renamed the amendment “Limiting the Status of Marriage to Opposite Sex Couples,” much to the chagrin of those that would like to see the amendment passed.

The question I have posed to various groups like the National Organization for Marriage (who is pumping some serious out of state money into Minnesota for Marriage) is this: “what is the specific problem with Secretary Ritchie’s title?”  Unsurprisingly I haven’t received a direct answer, but the organizations involved are trying to direct their ire at what they perceive to be an abuse of power by Secretary Ritchie.  An abuse of power in changing no other language in the amendment other than the title.  Right.

The more likely theory is that the previous title, “Recognition of marriage solely between one man and one woman,” is more positive sounding than the new title.  This is a pretty common tactic of anti-gay groups, to make their cause sound less damning than it actually is.  They’re not stripping rights and status from LGBT couples, they’re protecting marriage.  They’re not archaic and outdated, they’re traditional.  They don’t hate LGBT individuals, they just work as hard as possible to make sure LGBT individuals cannot receive domestic partnership benefits, aren’t protected by anti-discrimination laws, and that their children are taught from a young age that their parents’ relationship is invalid in some way.  (Not italics there, it's just true.)

The fact that Minnesota for Marriage is so uncomfortable calling this amendment what it is shows that on some level they know what they’re doing is wrong.  Otherwise there is no need to “look better.”  And with the rash of LGBT suicides at Anoka still fresh on everyone’s mind, groups like Minnesota for Marriage aren’t looking very good these days.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

What To Do With ‘Hate’ Speech

Earlier today I posed the following question on Twitter: ‘What’s the opinion on ‘hate’ speech?  Do we need to be above letting mere words hurt us or more conscious of what we’re saying?'

Pretty much every response favored a middle ground, to which I agree.  As a writer, I am probably more comfortable around such language than most, seeing words as simple strokes on paper and understanding that there is a lot more, tone, context, background, that goes with them and gives them meaning and weight.

Still, it is undeniable that words like ‘nigger’, ‘faggot’, and ‘tranny’ are offensive and do cause harm, even if members within those cultures identify as those words.  In a world where none of the three groups associated with those words are equal to the straight, cis-, white majority (and we kid ourselves greatly on the first in this country), they’re too often used to hold those minorities at a disadvantage, to point out that there is something inherently wrong with whomever or whatever those words are directed at.  They’re more than calling someone black, gay, or transgendered, they’re also pointing out that there is something wrong with being those things.  It is for this reason that I have largely stricken them from my vocabulary.

IMEnough Submission - Adam

As Alex mentioned a few weeks ago here, we were invited to participate in Kye's IMEnough project which promotes visibility of transgender people and their allies. Check out my contribution to the project after the jump.