Sunday, January 2, 2011


A CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT IN THE MAKING

Monday night is Brownsville's first gay rights meeting for Parents, Friends and Family of the community.  Click on the PFLAG link to the left for details.  Guys I am an old dog - I have lived  through a time when terminology is constantly changing  - I remember the debate when we went from colored, to black to Afro-American.  I remember when gay incorporated male, female and all other groups tied to the community.  I remember when queer was a bad word and then became a phrase of pride "I am here and I am queer." 

My point is - I hate this ever ending need to come up with new names and sub-groups - it divides and speaks to irrelevant differences - so I will just use the word gay to incorporate everyone.

TO THE PARENTS, FAMILY AND  FRIENDS:

A RESOURCE GUIDE FOR PARENTS

http://www.pflag.org/fileadmin/user_upload/Our_Daughters_and_Sons_Final_03.pdf

Spanish version

http://www.pflag.org/fileadmin/user_upload/NuestrasHijas.pdf

This link is a great library of resources.

http://www.pflagphoenix.org/quick_guides/quick-parents.html

http://www.ashastd.org/parents/gayteensupport.cfm

http://www.gayfamilysupport.com/gay-help-books.html

Try and go to this meeting.  I will say I was kind of relieved when I was reminded that I have a previous engagement for Monday night - so   I cannot attend.  This is a new guard and they need to be allowed to find their own way.

Brownsville is not Dallas 1993, when PFLAG was created - it is Dallas 1983 with competing voices all who believed they were  right and everyone else was wrong kept the Dallas community from moving forward.  This mentality held back Dallas for years.  It will hold back Brownsville if people decide their individual goals are more important than the mission of PFLAG.

http://www.pflagdallas.org/chapter.asp

Most of the stories in the above link are from people I grew with as PFLAG Dallas expanded.  We all understood - politics stated at the door - if some gay upstart tried to lecture the parents about religion we stopped them.   The PFLAG meetings were a safe house - you were not judged.  You were given access to educational material  to help you better relate to your son, daughter, nephew, niece, or friend.  We had grandparents trying to act as the link between the grandson/daughter and the rest of the family.

What made the group was short - very short meetings before we broke up into groups.  I loved leading a group.  No judgment - just listening and learning.  Parents, family and friends were allowed to express their feelings - even if they offended people in the group.  It was a process - they needed to deal with their ignorance - most eventually realized how stupid it was for them to try and preach sin while speaking to people whose only crime was loving their children.  People came around - we just had to be patient.

The key to PFLAG meetings is the circle discussions - no judgment  - just honest discussion.  Yes I remember times when a gay person would get upset because a parent would say learning their son/daughter was gay was like having them die.  So what? - since when is an honest emotion a bad thing.

These type emotions were important because they educated the gay people in the group about the real emotions of their parents - emotions they never heard because they were  to busy demanding immediate acceptance.

THE GAY CHURCH

http://www.valleycentral.com/news/story.aspx?id=561384

(Note:  you do not have to be gay to attend - the point is the church welcomes gays.  Here is the link to the church.  If you feel like you need to belong to a church and do not because of anti-gay rhetoric - give them a try

http://www.mtcalvarycc.org/)

My readers know I am not a Christian - I am a student of Joshua - they are not the same.  But some people need the church - and so what? - for many people the church reconnects them to family and what they enjoyed about their family.  It gives them a sense of belonging.

I remember radical anti-christian gays denouncing the first gay churches.  Such as the bigots in these so called Christian churches condemning everyone to hell these anti-christian gays decided you cannot be gay and Christian - they had become advocates of intolerance.

The gay community loves to say there is no agenda while pockets within the gay community demand absolute loyalty to their ideas.  I have never been good at the game.  I have always been on the outside because I embrace everyone - I understand humanity is simply too complex to fit into one cubbyhole.

I wish the church and PFLAG all the success in the world.  I hope as they move forward they learn success only comes when you accept everyone and not merely tolerate one another.  The concept of tolerance is an excuse to remain ignorant.

In both groups different people will have different ideas on how to move forward.  Both groups need to remember their mission, and embrace diversity of ideas as well as how we choose to live our lives.

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