Tag Archives: lesbian

America the Beautiful is Still America in Multiple Languages

By now you’ve probably heard about the controversial Coca-Cola ad that aired during the Super Bowl. The spot featured “America the Beautiful” sung in various languages and displayed images of various American families, including a gay couple (yes, that’s apparently still scandalous).

You’ve also probably seen the lists of tweets from people rebelling against it and threatening to boycott Coke products (Good luck with that – they are everywhere). The outrage over the commercial sparked the hashtag #SpeakAmerican. Are we really surprised? That sort of backlash is to be expected whenever a company or campaign tries to embrace the “otherness” that America was founded on.

What is inspiring though is the amount of people that have stood up in support of the ad, toasting it for it’s depiction of America’s core values of diversity and togetherness. One noble newswoman added her two cents that sum up the situation very nicely:

Her line about the Statue of Liberty not saying “give me your English-speaking-only-Christian-believing-heterosexual-masses” is especially applaudable. What’s even more ironic is that the song’s lyricist Katherine Lee Bates lived with her female partner in Boston for 25 years.

When controversies like these occur, one has to wonder if some of us received a different course on American history. Were some of us not told that America was a country founded by foreigners? The Puritans came from England to escape religious persecution and thus our forefathers created a Constitution that intended to give a religious safe haven and a fair chance to anyone that came to America’s shores. That’s not to say that America has been perfect at embracing diversity. In fact we’ve been far from it – you only have to look at the Civil Rights Movement or the current fight for marriage equality to see that. But does the sound of America the Beautiful being sung in the languages of America’s people – all kinds of them – really still enrage us? Why does that feel so unnatural to some of us?

Tolerance will never develop overnight, and we may never see a day of universal acceptance of religion, race and sexual orientation. Yet we can ask to move forward. The advertising gurus at Coke seem to appreciate that, and so do people like this news anchor and all those that supported this ad.

Get involved: Your Holiday Mom

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I went to high school in North Carolina. Being located at the heart of the United States Bible Belt, my home state isn’t known for it’s hospitality towards the LGBTQ community. However, my last two years of high school I went to a public residential magnet school which became sort of a liberal bubble set apart from the conservative influence of our outside community. Our head of residential life actually made a promise that he’d lose his job before he ever made a student come out of the closet to their family, so besides being a place where nerds could actually live at school, it was a safe place for those teens who felt persecuted or unsafe identifying their sexuality in their home schools. Thus, we had a much more vibrant LGBTQ teen community at our school, with alliance clubs and leadership positions created specifically to create healthy dialogue for students questioning or coming to terms with their sexualities.

It created a unique experience that most southern kids don’t get to have. Of course, growing up in a “Will & Grace” era I did horrifying things like try to collect gay friends like Pokemon cards – because to my 16 year old mind having gay or lesbian friends was a novelty and I hadn’t fully figured out that people are people, no matter who they like to sleep next to at night. I am so thankful for the experience and the open mindedness it provided me going into adulthood and that I now have many great friends that just happen to be gay.

However, we still live in a world where that kind of attitude isn’t adopted by everyone. And the other day when I was scrolling through my own blog dashboard I was reminded that there are thousands of kids out there who don’t have a home or school to go to that encourages, and embraces, them to be who they are. Each year we hear of teens who feel so outcasted and lonely because they’re LGBTQ that they self-harm or worse – take their lives. The pressure and depression over this can get even worse around the holiday time when these young people don’t feel safe or welcome in their own homes.

Then I discovered “Your Holiday Mom” – an outreach effort by moms and supportive LGBTQ allies from the internet who are trying to give those teens something to make them feel warm this holiday season. The virtual support group collects letters from moms and allies alike from the internet with messages of love, acceptance and hope and publishes them for anyone struggling this holiday season around family members or friends who don’t support them. The letters each remind the reader that they are loved and they have the place in more progressive hearts, so they’ll know someone is thinking about them and caring about them during the season.

I love this idea because it’s a small thing that can mean the world to someone in trouble. Sometimes charity or giving isn’t always about dollar bills, but opening our hearts to help others. Last year the campaign posted over 40,000 letters. This is the second year and they hope to get even more. Will you help? Here are the submission guidelines. Tell a stranger that you love them this holiday season and you could save someone’s life.

Texas Judge Orders Lesbian Couple to Split “for the Sake of the Children”

url4No, you didn’t read that headline wrong. Judge John Roach Jr. of Collin County, Texas has ordered Page Price to move out of her house where she lives with her partner, Carolyn Compton, and Compton’s two children. Is that even legal, you may be wondering?

Technically, yes. Roach’s ruling calls upon a “morality clause” that Compton signed as a part of her divorce settlement two years ago. The clause states that anyone with a “dating or intimate relationship” with the parent, not related by blood or marriage, is not allowed in the house after 9pm when the children are present. Though neutral-seeming enough, many are accusing the ruling, and morality clauses in general, of particularly targeting LGBT families.This is made all the more insidious and problematic in a state like Texas where homosexual couples can’t even nullify morality clauses by getting married. Their only options? Split up, move to another state, or maintain a solely daytime relationship.

In response, Price and Compton are complying with the order while simultaneously launching a Facebook campaign to spread awareness around this issue and raise money for their appeal. Price writes:

Carolyn Lang Compton and I have been together almost three years and have a very happy and healthy home. Our children are all happy and well adjusted. By his enforcement, being that we cannot marry in this state, I have been ordered to move out of my home. Said Judge offered further information to our attorneys that if he could throw her in jail for being gay he would…

Judge Roach Jr. placed this “Morality Clause ” in their divorce papers with no end date at his will during their final divorce hearing stating that he did not like Carolyn’s “lifestyle”…

Now I realize there are those of you who don’t agree with my “lifestyle”, but the fact is that I wasn’t given a choice. I also know that those of you who know me know that I am a good person and would never hurt a child in any way. Tell me how this is just. Equal rights?

gavelbang_320x245Price goes on to describe Compton’s tenuous relationship with her ex-husband, which involves him having been charged with 3rd degree felony stalking, hiring a private investigator to gather evidence for his case against them, and visiting his children just “12 times in 3 years.” The unsettling ruling may have uprooted the Price/Compton family environment, but it seems to have at least galvanized their efforts in the name of a cause for non-discrimination and equal rights. Price writes:

We didn’t want to be the face for this movement, but it looks like God has bigger plans for us. We will stand up and fight this for our family and hope that it helps pave the way for marriage equality in Texas! The support we’ve felt has been incredible and has given us the hope and strength to push forward and hopefully put an end to this type of discrimination. We are strong and we will get through this TOGETHER!

Morality clauses are a tricky subject, in general. The idea is that a court, company, or agency has the right to dictate people’s behavior and lifestyle choices for the sake of propriety, children’s well-being, brand image, etc. But when “morality” presents such a hazy, variable standard for living, does the court have any right to legislate it?

What do you think? Do morality clauses seem acceptable to you, and, if so, what kinds of lifestyle habits should or shouldn’t be regulated? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below!

Give It Up For Beautiful Mother’s Day Cards Representing LGBT and Alternative Families!

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Mother’s Day is coming up this weekend, and you may be scrambling to get cards, gifts, and plan get togethers with those special moms in your life. But for many families in the United States, this holiday is more problematic. After all, does Mother’s Day representation in media and on greeting cards pay equal tribute to single moms, young moms, queer moms, incarcerated moms, or minority moms? And what about families headed up by two dads – should they just wait until Father’s Day and leave it at that?

One organization, Strong Families, is tackling this issue head on. This grassroots organization states that their mission is to help all families thrive regardless of race, class, age, sexual orientation, citizenship status, or any other marker of relative enfranchisement and alienation. Strong Families’ line of custom alternative Mother’s Day cards is as  beautiful as it is groundbreaking. Take a look at these amazing cards, and if you feel inspired, go ahead and create on for a special parent in your life:

Click here to make your own Mother’s Day card using one of these beautiful templates from Strong Families.

How will you be celebrating Mother’s Day this year?

 

Images from http://strongfamiliesmovement.org

Thursday Morning Melody: Same Love

We’ve all heard “Thrift Shop” about a million times on the radio, but equally catchy and much more poignant, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ “Same Love” will leave you in tears. The song is a ballad for equal rights and marriage equality, which the video captures with an entire dramatized tale of a boy growing up, falling in love, and struggling for acceptance. Even if you’ve heard the song, seen the video, and moved on from the Macklemore craze, take a moment to let yourself fall in love again with this gripping tune. And while you watch, keep in mind the incredible leaps our society has taken of late for love equality, and the road that still awaits for us to travel.

When I was in the third grade I thought that I was gay
‘Cause I could draw, my uncle was, and I kept my room straight
I told my mom tears rushing down my face
She’s like “Ben you’ve loved girls since before pre-k tripping, ”
Yeah, I guess she had a point, didn’t she?
Bunch of stereotypes all in my head.
I remember doing the math like, “Yeah, I’m good at little league”
A preconceived idea of what it all meant
For those that liked the same sex
Had the characteristics
The right wing conservatives think it’s a decision
And you can be cured with some treatment and religion
Man-made rewiring of a predisposition
Playing God, aw nah here we go
America the brave still fears what we don’t know
And God loves all his children, is somehow forgotten
But we paraphrase a book written thirty-five-hundred years ago
I don’t know

And I can’t change
Even if I tried
Even if I wanted to
I can’t change
Even if I try
Even if I wanted to
My love
My love
My love
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm

If I was gay, I would think hip-hop hates me
Have you read the YouTube comments lately?
“Man, that’s gay” gets dropped on the daily
We become so numb to what we’re saying
A culture founded from oppression
Yet we don’t have acceptance for ’em
Call each other faggots behind the keys of a message board
A word rooted in hate, yet our genre still ignores it
Gay is synonymous with the lesser
It’s the same hate that’s caused wars from religion
Gender to skin color, the complexion of your pigment
The same fight that led people to walk outs and sit ins
It’s human rights for everybody, there is no difference!
Live on and be yourself
When I was at church they taught me something else
If you preach hate at the service those words aren’t anointed
That holy water that you soak in has been poisoned
When everyone else is more comfortable remaining voiceless
Rather than fighting for humans that have had their rights stolen
I might not be the same, but that’s not important
No freedom till we’re equal, damn right I support it

(I don’t know)

And I can’t change
Even if I tried
Even if I wanted to
My love
My love
My love
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm

We press play, don’t press pause
Progress, march on
With the veil over our eyes
We turn our back on the cause
Till the day that my uncles can be united by law
When kids are walking ’round the hallway plagued by pain in their heart
A world so hateful some would rather die than be who they are
And a certificate on paper isn’t gonna solve it all
But it’s a damn good place to start
No law is gonna change us
We have to change us
Whatever God you believe in
We come from the same one
Strip away the fear
Underneath it’s all the same love
About time that we raised up

And I can’t change
Even if I tried
Even if I wanted to
I can’t change
Even if I try
Even if I wanted to
My love
My love
My love
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm
She keeps me warm
Love is patient
Love is kind
Love is patient
Love is kind
(I’m not crying on Sundays)
Love is patient
(I’m not crying on Sundays)
Love is kind
(I’m not crying on Sundays)
Love is patient
(I’m not crying on Sundays)
Love is kind
(I’m not crying on Sundays)
Love is patient
(I’m not crying on Sundays)
Love is kind
(I’m not crying on Sundays)
Love is patient
Love is kind

* * *

This post is part of  our Thursday Morning Melody series. Every Thursday we feature the music video and lyrics to a song that touches us deeply. If there’s a melody you wish to share with the Intent community, please share it with us in the comments below! Click here to listen to past Thursday Morning Melodies.

Are You Scared About Life Without Oprah? (VIDEO)

Did you know there is only one "The Oprah Winfrey Show" left? It’s hard to believe, but the queen of daytime TV will soon be leaving her throne, sending young women, mothers and housewives everywhere into a sheer panic.

If you find yourself to be one of these women (or men!) wondering if there really is life after "Oprah," don’t fret. With the parody song "Scared About Life Without Oprah," Maxine Lapiduss proves you are not alone.

Watch for a cameo by "Glee" star Jane Lynch and listen to Lapiduss lament about her upcoming life without a daily does of "O" in song.

Gay Rights are Human Rights

Author Kevin Mendez writes in Remnants of Higher Thought,“It is unimportant whether a man marries a man, woman marries a woman, or man and woman marry. Only the love between them is relevant.” Upgrading the teachings of the wise man Jesus, Kevin challenges readers in Remnants of Higher Thought to love others more than they love their self because as a San Francisco based Holistic Therapist he has found that many people do not love themselves very much. 

Our religious government

The United States has proven itself a Christian country, whose beliefs are firmly rooted in the God of the Biblical Old Testament. Interestingly enough, Jesus – the God of the New Testament taught to love others as you love yourself and makes no reference to Gay relations as sinful.   

Gay rights are human rights. Distinction results from ignorance and religious dogma.  Same sex marriage is still perceived as an alternative life style in San Francisco and throughout the world.

The beauty of San Francisco

Growing up in San Francisco same sex relations seemed perfectly normal to me. The city by the Bay is considered the Gay Capital of the world and rightfully so.  San Francisco is one of the few cities where same sex couples can comfortably live without fear.

Untold truth

Many young people today associate Aids to same-sex relations. This in my opinion is by design in an attempt to steer people away from gay relations. The Biblical Old Testament among other mythological texts speaks about the consequences that homosexuals faced when participating in same sex relations.  

Many experts are convinced Aids was synthetically created through secret US government programs directed at African Americans and homosexuals as part of a larger eugenics program.  As a Psychic and Remote Viewer I can say with certainty there is truth to this. 

Cures for cancer have existed for 50+ years. There is no disease known to man without a cure. In a capitalist country there is no profit in cure or peace so war and disease are here to stay – for now.

We perpetuate the problem by buying into religions and belief systems that encourage discrimination, hierarchies and separation.  There is nothing more important in life than fostering quality relationships with ourselves, others and our planet. 

The first thing that should be taught to children is self-love. Through this one teaching all good things will flow.  

 

understanding

I don’t understand my inability to back off of this relationship I’m having with this woman.  She is a friend, but since we are attracted to each other (both out lesbians, have no problems with that), that makes it hard to remain just a friend.  She is a substance abuser and has been in rehab 3 times.  She has been sober for long stretches of time, or so she says.  My other friends tell me to turn and run and normally I would have no trouble doing this.  I read about how manipulative alcoholics can be and narcissistic…how they’ll never be able to have a normal relationship because they’ll always be caught up in ‘recovery’.  I know all of this.  I am known for doing what is right for me…and here I am, confused as to why I can’t seem to stay over on the friend side of the boundary.  We connect in so many ways that I’ve never connected before with another woman…so many reasons I am drawn to her.  It feels dangerous, but I also trust her somehow, although everyone tells me I’m a fool to trust her. 

VIDEO: The Moment Prop 8 Was Overruled In San Francisco

If you didn’t happen to turn on a television, computer, radio or pick up a paper yesterday, then this may come as a shock: Prop 8 was overruled in California!

I don’t have much to say on the issue, as I’m sure we all know plenty, but I will say this is just one step closer to the equality of EVERYONE and this video, showing the exact moment when the crowd outside the Federal building in San Francisco found out Prop 8 was ruled unconstitutional, is very heartwarming and exciting. Not going to lie, I totally teared up.

 

What an amazing way to start your day right?

A big burst of freedom and love for all! Horay! 

Congratulations to all the couples out there who can now marry! 

 

Photo: CC Flickr//sigmanation

The Today Show’s Modern Wedding That Isn’t Really

The Today Show is hosting a contest,Today’s Wedding: Modern Love! “TODAY is throwing a modern day wedding! Whether your love blossomed over the Internet or you met the old-fashioned way, we want to hear from you!” touts its Facebook entry page. It’s a seemingly sweet idea- you and your significant other can enter to win a wedding on the Today Show and you get a free honeymoon! 

Awesome!

Right? 

Well, sure, if you’re heterosexual.

Apparently "modern love" still excludes the millions of gay and lesbian couples out there. 

According to fine print, winners must be heterosexual. 

 

GLAAD contacted the network last week to find out why its application listed only “bride” and “groom” as options for applicants since the Today Show welcomed same-sex couples to apply to its “Hometown Wedding Contest” in years past. Good As You blog alerted us to the application problem.

NBC sent GLAAD this statement regarding the 2010 Modern Day Wedding Contest:  

“For the TODAY show wedding, the couple must be able to be legally married in New York, which is where the wedding will take place."

This is not a valid argument since New York State legally recognizes same-sex marriages licensed in other states. Same-sex couples can now legally obtain marriage licenses in Iowa, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Washington D.C. NBC is mistakenly equating the marriage license with the wedding celebration. Same-sex weddings are entirely legal in New York State.  As long as the marriage license is conferred upon the same-sex couple by another state, New York State recognizes the marriage as a fully valid and legal one. NBC’s exclusion of same-sex couples from its contest is not motivated by the law, but bias against these couples.

GLAAD

 

Sounds REEEEAALLL "modern" to me, you know, just excluding millions of couples across the nation. Thanks for the LOL, NBC. Coulda sworn we were talking about The Today Show, not SNL here.

GLAAD goes on not only to make the obvious point that producers could very easily work with the winning couple to assure that they obtained legal rights in their own state but more importantly that the contest isn’t to win the legality of a marriage, it is to win the celebration of one. Although it is harder for the gay and lesbian communities to marry, the problem most people have with getting married isn’t going to get the paper, it’s being able to commemorate the event the way they would like to, especially in this economy.

The scary part of all this is the reach The Today Show has, with millions of viewers across the states everyday. If The Today Show doesn’t amend the contest rules, it it sending a very discriminatory message, even if it claims it is abiding by the New York State laws. By not allowing everyone to enter, NBC and The Today Show are basically taking a stance on a heated national debate. As a news source, NBC should take every opportunity to be neutral and this act is simply condoning the prejudice laws that are running ramped through this country and stealing the freedoms of innocent Americans everyday. 

Click here to see how you can help and take action with GLAAD to get the contest amended and help in the fight for equality for every man and woman, no matter their sexual preference. 

 

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