Salt Spring Island Pride

Salt Spring Island Pride! Sept 10th - 11th Meet the stars!

Salt Spring Island is exploring a new paradigm at its first-ever gay pride festival September 10-11. The adult group Gays and Lesbians of Salt Spring Island (GLOSSI) is cooperating with youth from the local high school's Gay-Straight Alliance to present a unifying community celebration. We hope that GLBT folks and their straight allies from around the area will join them at Artspring Theatre in Ganges on Saturday evening, September 10th for Visions and Voices, a panel discussion on the future of gays and lesbians in our community and the world.

Panel members include well-known figures Mary-Woo Sims, Svend Robinson, Charley Beresford, and Salt Spring Island based author, Evelyn White, along with two articulate young members of the Gay-Straight Alliance and their sponsor, GISS teacher Bill Turner. The panellists will share personal stories and discuss future goals and challenges.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for youth and are available from the Artspring Box Office: Phone: 537-2102; Toll-free: 866-537-2102. There will be a cocktail reception before and after the event, and a dance party following at the Glass Onion in Ganges. There will also be a Gay & Lesbian Film festival shown at ArtSpring on Saturday from 2-5 pm in Ganges.

The annual Salt Spring Island Potluck will be held on Sunday Sept 11 from 12-5 pm at Ruckle Park on beautiful Salt Spring Island. Bring a friend and a dish make a day of it!

If you want more information about the event, you can check out the GLOSSI website at www.saltspring.com/glossi or contact glossi@saltspring.com

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Gays deserve place to live and work

“I don’t think homosexuals should be granted a special minority status,” he told the paper. However, he said that gays, including teachers, should not be denied jobs solely because of their sexuality.

“As long as a person obeys the law and doesn’t recruit a student to a certain lifestyle, they shouldn’t be prevented from teaching. Every American should be allowed to work wherever he or she wishes as long as they obey the law.”

Jerry Falwel, August 25, 2005 365gay.com


The end justifies the means

A lawyer in the United States is attempting to have the his country de-recognize the Holy See (Catholic Church) over sex-abuse within the church. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who was the head of the doctrinal office as well as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith stand accuesed of involvement in the conspiracy to cover up sexual assaults against three boys by a seminarian in Texas in the mid-1990's.

Read what the Christian right activists have to say ...

"This is not the first time radically dissident "Catholics" have attempted to undermine the international legal status of the Holy See. The last attempt was made by the bogus group, "Catholics" for a Free Choice, when in 1999, they launched a postcard campaign to have the Holy See delegation ousted from the UN. The presence and prestige of the Vatican diplomatic corps at international conferences such as those on population at Cairo and Beijing have long been a thorn in the side of groups working to promote abortion and sterilization." - Lifesite News

The end justifies the means... These people will even defend the Catholic Church's concerted attempts to cover-up sex abuse cases and to find "good" jobs for the abusers. A few years ago this defence of the Catholic Church by the Evangelical set would not have occured. It is another clear example of the unification of social conservative christians and the ever more "evangelical" bent of the catholic leadership.

For more information on social conservatives, Stephen Harper, gay rights, same-sex or equal marriage, James Dobson, evangelicals, Focus on the Family, Bishop Henry, The Pope, use the Technorati search box in the side bar here and at Politics in BC.

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I wake up and I'm a boy

The Boston Globe has this interesting article...
Boston Globe: What Makes People Gay?

His mother's heart sank. She could tell that he wanted more than anything to please her. "Basically, he was saying there must be a miracle - that one day I wake up and I'm a boy. That's the only way he could imagine it could happen."

The article is online at the Boston Globe and here.


Safe Schools Campaign

Egale Canada

Press Release

For immediate release - August 11, 2005

On International Youth Day,Egale launches safe schools campaign
Targets provincial ministers of education

Ottawa--This Friday, August 12 is the United Nation's International Youth Day. Egale Canada has chosen International Youth Day to officially launch its safe schools petition campaign. Egale has circulated the petitions across the country in recent weeks,
gathering several thousand names.

The U.N. International Youth Day focuses on the World Programme of Action for Youth, which in turn seeks to increase the "opportunities available to young people for full, effective and constructive participation in society." Education and human rights are two of the key focus areas. Section 20 of the Programme calls on governments to promote non-discrimination, tolerance and respect for diversity. Section 8(e) says every state should ensure "young people are informed by accurate data on their situation and needs." See www.un.org/youth for details.

"Schools should be safe for all children, regardless of personal characteristics like race, sex, religion, sexual orientation or gender identity," said Laurie Arron, Egale's Director of Advocacy. "While it is generally agreed all children deserve protection, all too often lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans-identified (LGBT) youth, as well as children of same-sex couples, are left out in the cold. That's why provincial and territorial governments must take action to explicitly provide for their protection."

"Egale's petitions ask provincial and territorial ministers of education to take concrete action to provide a safe, caring and inclusive school environment for all students, staff, and families, including those who are or are perceived to be lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans-identified, as well as children of LGBT people," indicated Egale President Gemma Hickey. "Teaching acceptance and respect is always age-appropriate."

"Schools are one of the best ways to reach youth, as well as adults," stated Joan Beecroft, an Ontario teacher and co-chair of Egale's Education Committee. "This is why Egale is asking provincial ministers of education to be more pro-active in addressing discrimination and bullying at school. While there are encouraging steps being taken by some school boards, much more needs to be done and by a greater number of boards."

"Schools must no longer be breeding grounds for intolerance and hatred," declares James Chamberlain, a B.C. teacher and co-chair of Egale's Education Committee. "Bullying of all types has a detrimental impact on learning and self-worth. Ministries of education must play an active
role in ensuring safe learning environments for all students, free from harassment."

Egale Canada advances equality and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans-identified (LGBT) people, and their families, across Canada. Founded in 1986, Egale has over 4,000 members including people in every province and territory of Canada. Its work includes political action, legal interventions and public education and awareness.

tags: , , GLBT, , , Society, ,


Cheer on Texan Bulldyke blog

I came across a post on the yahoo Rural Gay group (mostly Americans, but some Canadians members too) indicating the writer was starting a blog. It caughty my eye as I have been thinking of late about my blogs and just how much I have changed in this effort since it all started.

Queer Thoughts was the first blogging effort. I started with personal stuff and gay news. Yikes then I couldn't stop talking about other things like the war in Iraq and politics in general.

Focus seems to be the key to success in blogging. I decided I needed another blog that would deal with all the other things spinning in my head as a political activist. I started Politics in BC. Queer Thoughts is now 90% all gay news, activism and personal stuff.

As I started this post I was telling you about the a new blog started by a self described "BullDyke". She says on her blog that she has been referred to as a most cynical person. I plan to follow this sister's effort and hope to read some interesting stuff on being gay in the rural world.

Check out Rural, Gay, & Libertarian. Welcome her to the blogging world with a comment or two!
My background is that of an ex-army sgt, leather dyke, over-educated (grad school in biology), semi-hermit, wanna-be farmer on my on little 5 acres in hell, errr, Texas. I have been called the most cynical person you will ever meet that isn't an ex-cop, a white knight in black leather, and a whole lot more. All of which are un-printable on a family web site. ~ Bulldyke


Homophobic attitudes come from insecurity

Imagine that ...
"I found that if you made men more insecure about their masculinity, they displayed more homophobic attitudes, tended to support the Iraq War more and would be more willing to purchase an SUV over another type of vehicle," said Robb Willer, a sociology doctoral candidate at Cornell. Willer is presenting his findings Aug. 15 at the American Sociological Association's 100th annual meeting in Philadelphia.

Real men will or could, (better be sure you feel okay then) read more here

a nod to Doucheblog for the link
, Gay, , , , , Psychology

Gay and Bi Men's Coffee night "Kelowna"

Gay and Bi Men's Coffee night starting August 17, 2005

A couple of us gay men have been looking for a place to hold a gay men's coffee night in Kelowna since the regular drop in at the Bean Scene was closed down. We now have a place to start this. We are not associated with any group or organization, just some guys that wanted to bring gay men together over coffee.

You can join us beginning Wednesday, August 17 from 7 to 9pm. The location is the Kelowna Drop In, 467 Lawrence Avenue, Kelowna. We will do this every Wednesday for six weeks to determine if there is enough interest!

Our coffee night in not affiliated in any way with the Kelowna Drop In other than our thanks to them for making the space available to us. For more information you can email me here.

caribookidca (at) yahoo (dot) ca

Watch Gay Okanagan for regular information on this event and others in the Okanagan!



Friends don't let Friends go to Hell

I was all over the internet this evening and came up with this, I thought some of you would find it interesting. The quote you read below is from Butch Hancock and i have had in the recesses of my brain for some time. Oddly enough tonight I found it on Losing my religion.com with the following essay titled Sex.

The site offers up supportive works and information on christianity... "Our issue is not with God, nor the behavior of Christians. God is who he/she/it is, and Christians misbehave just like everyone else. Rather it is evangelical Christian doctrine that we focus on, and its rational and moral implications." - Home page of Losing my religion.com

Life in Lubbock, Texas, taught me two things:

One is that God loves you and
you're going to burn in hell

The other is that sex is the most awful, filthy
thing on earth

you should save it for someone you love.

~ Butch Hancock

by Emery
Losing my religion.com

Christians, like everyone else, are obsessed with sex. This I can understand. What I don't understand is why God should be so obsessed with it too. Few things bring Christians out in greater numbers than a gay rights march, or any group promoting sexual behavior that they do not approve of. And judging by the signs and banners righteously paraded during these rallies, nothing interests God so much as humans having sex.

There was I time I could believe this–before I had sex. As a young college student with raging hormones and a strict religious injunction to abstain from all physical and mental activities pertaining to sex, I was very much aware of how one could be so obsessed with it. Since I wasn't planning on getting married any time soon, sex was completely off-limits to me. So naturally, I could think of little else. It was a daily struggle to fight off thoughts about sex. Yet the more I disallowed them, the more they would come to mind. It really did seem like there were demons in my head, ready to pounce anytime I let my mind wander. So it was easy for me to join in this Christian condemnation of sex. It justified my struggle, and gave me a platform from which to hurl my indignation at the weaknesses of my own will. And that is the reason I do not believe that God’s attitudes toward sex would be the same as Christians’. All the arguments Christians use against sexual practices that they do not approve of are couched in emotion, suppressed desires, and unsound reasoning. I do not believe God's attitudes toward sex would be driven by such human attitudes. Take homosexuality, for example.

Christians believe that your sexual preference is a choice, that somehow you can choose to be gay or straight. This is a necessary assumption, for how can being gay be a sin unless it is something that can be chosen? That is why there is so much Christian opposition against the notion that you can be born gay, or that the choice is somehow out of your control. That would remove the activity from the realm of choice. And sin by definition is a choice to disobey God, so any activity that cannot be chosen loses its ability to be classified as a sin. Since being gay is a sin, then it must be a choice.

Yet it doesn't take much self-awareness to see that this cannot be true. For example, most of the people reading this are probably straight. So to the straight folks, here is a simple question to ask yourself: did you choose to be straight? In other words, was there a time in your life that you said,

"You know, I could go either way. But I think I'll choose to be attracted to the opposite sex?"

Read the rest of the essay here

For more on Gay rights, Evangelical, Christians, Social conservatives, James Dobson use the Technorati search box in the sidebar here and at Politics in BC

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Mark Morford on Mega Churches

American writer Mark Morford has an interesting take on Big Box Churches. Have a look here for yourself.

Who Loves Creepy Megachurches?
Stadium crowds, thousands of rabid devotees, all chugging Jesus like Kool-Aid. Should you be afraid?By Mark Morford

I have never been to a big creepy megachurch. This is my first confession. I have never been to, say, Lakewood Church in Houston, the biggest glossiest megachurch of all, which just dumped a staggering $75 million to renovate the former stadium for the Houston Rockets and turn it into a massive pulsing swaying arm-raisin' eye-glazed weirdly repressed House o' Jesus.

I have never been to World Changers in Georgia or New Birth Missionary Baptist in Texas or Calvary Chapel in Costa Mesa or the Potter's House in Dallas or the Phoenix First Assembly of God, et al., all of which claim well over 15,000 regional followers (some 20,000 or even 30,000) and most of which operate much more like careening multitentacled corporations than humble homes of spiritual connection and love. But, you know, quibbling.

I mention all this because megachurches are the latest phenomenon, the hottest trend in the Christian godfearin' biz, arena-scaled piety polished up and bloated out and aimed like a giant homophobic cannon straight at the gloomy face of a new and improved God, one who apparently truly loves the fact that these tacky sanitized enormo-domes are raking in an average of $5 million a year each, depending on size and girth and magnetism of their glossy preprogrammed pastors and depending on how many CDs and syrupy self-help books and movie production companies and proselytizing Web sites and recording studios and hateful radio brainwashin' programs and malicious teenage abstinence seminars they have to go along with the nearly naked virgin car-wash fund-raisers they offer up to Jesus on warm summer Sundays. ...

(click here to read the rest)

(Full URL: http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/gate/archive/2005/08/03/notes080305.DTL&nl=fix )

Not Gay - But sex with guys is cool

An Exploration of the Down-Low Identity:

Nongay-Identified Young African-American Men Who Have Sex with Men

There are not many studies on this issue. It is an interesting area to explore further. Currently I am involved in a survey of Nongay-Identified Men Who Have Sex with Men in BC.

The survey will hopefully add to the degree of knowledge we have on people and their sexual behaviour with respect to prevention of STD's (STI's) and HIV. The survey is being conducted for the BC Centre for Diesease Control by Interior BC agencies. The lead agency is Living Positive Okanagan.

Check out Man 2 Man.

We expect to have our initial results out later this year and I will post that information on Queer Thoughts.

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Canadians want Fred Phelps extradited

With the Americans managing to have Canada arrest pot activist Marc Emery and others, some in the blogging world have decided Canada should attempt to extradite the Reverand Fred Phelps.

Rev. Phelps produces a great deal of hate literature which he makes available to canadians to download from his website. The material includes demands that "all nations outlaw sodomy (homosexuality) and impose the death penalty. "

That constitutes a hate crime in Canada and he freely makes this information available for downloading and distribution in Canada. Your thoughts can be left here or at Extradite the Reverand Fred Phelps.

For more on the US Government's attempt to extradite Marc Emery and his colleagues...

5 Minute Action - No to US Drug War in Canada
Bail for Prince of Pot
Emery, The Political Prisoner
Marc Emery, unlikely poster boy for sovereignty

Tags: , Drugs, Politics, News, Current Affairs, Culture, Weed, POT, Hemp, , USA, , ,