To Google or not

There is lots of talk of people boycotting google due to its agreement to block access to sites on the internet the chinese government wants stopped. I may be missing something here but doesn't every company operating inside China comply strictly with Chinese law.

Think about the reason to boycott google. Wouldn't that also mean boycotting Wal-mart the biggest retail financial contributor to the government of China. We might also look closer to home. BC Hydro is very active in exploiting China and being well paid by the Chinese government to do it. Canada is seeing lots of Chinese interest in our coal and the tar sands. Perhaps Alberta Premier Ralph Klein should tell China to butt out until you clean up your human rights.

Anytime you buy something made in China (try to avoid it, I bet you can't unless you are well off) you support the Chinese government and its poor human rights and censorship agenda. Google is no worse than the thousands of American and Canadian companies that have worked out deals with China to outsource work from here. At least the google stuff won't mean job losses in North America while we pay the Chinese government for the priviledge.

I suspect there are a few more reasons to boycott google, doing business with China should not be one of them, unless of course you want to address the others that do it as well.

China, Google, ,


Republicans hiding behind gays for re-election

The United States is set for another round of elections. Many have written off the republicans as being toast afte the the last year where the President has seen his numbers reach the levels of unpopularity never seen by any other, perhaps Richard Nixon another Republican went lower.

Gays again will be important to the Republican campaign. Senate Majority leader Bill Frist (R-TN) will attempt to bring the marriage amendment forward this year for a full vote in both houses of congress. It is a political move to move the agenda away from that of George Bush and Iraq, the Republicans scandal in fundraising and of coursr the trouble former House Majority leader Tom DeLay is having.

Likely one of the most corrupt congresses in years and they have a way out. All they need to do is convince enough Americans that gay people getting married is far worse than the trampling of civil rights, forget about the war in Iraq and the absolute failure of the Department of Homeland Security in dealing with the Hurricanes.

The plan worked last time. The effort to get bans on gay marriage into state constitutions brought people out to vote, people that may not have otherwise. Will it work a second time? It could.

, Politics, President, Republicans, , Religion, Gay, Current events

spoof Brokeback Mountain

spoof Brokeback Mountain
Uploaded by caribookidca

This is the topGun spoof of Brokeback Mountain. I like it and its a good laugh. If you like Tom Cruise as much as I have over the years, ever since Kokomo and Cocktail, then you are going to like this spoof by the good people at ebaumsworld.com.
You might also want to check out Nashville comics Travis and Jonathan do their good ol' boy version of SCTV's Bob and Doug McKenzie while reviewing Brokeback Mountain.

Oklahoma Cowboy - Keep up the fight!

You may have heard the story of the gay rancher, Sam Beaumont in Oklahoma that lost the ranch he had with his partner fo 24 years when his partner died and his will was missing a witness. If this couple had been man and woman, he would have received the ranch with no problems. His deceased partner's family contested the will and won. Our gay rancher was kicked off the ranch that had been his home for 24 years. See news coverage of the story here.

If you want to know what keeps me in this fight for equality, it is stories like this one. It goes back to the 80's when friends were dying from AIDS. Many partners were refused the right to attend the funeral of their partners. Families of the deceased came in and took everything, leaving many men that had lost their partner with nothing, and not even the chance to say good bye.
"They took the estate away from me," said Beaumont, who said he put about $200,000 of his own money into the ranch. "Everything that had Earl's name on it, they took. They took it all and didn't bat an eye." - Partner's death ends happy life on ranch, Indy Star

In some cases their partner would be dying in hospital when the family showed up and would deny them the right to visit. I really don't care what your religion is, when you do this to someone, you are acting out of extreme cruelty.

This is still happening in places in Canada and in the United States. Imagine, countries that proclaim to be free, that celebrate the freedom of individuals. Yet more so in the United States, a land that proclaims itself the greatest and most democratic nation in history, they treat people like this.

It was only today, January 27, 2006 that the State of Washington passed a bill prohibiting discrimination agaist someone because they are gay. What kind of protection has finally come to Washington State? The same protection any other American in the State has. Sadly, Washington State is not the last place to recognize that discrimination against gays is wrong.

Here in Canada, the province of Alberta has long fought against gay rights of any kind. They have failed to institute any gay rights except by force of court order.

Many in the gay community have become complacent. Many of our friends and allies have as well. Political friends have jumped on an above ground railroad, joining the hysterical ride away from freedom. Remember when churches silently lent a hand to escaping slaves on the underground railroad. Many of those churches today are putting up thick fences, attempting to keep alive a bigotry that tears in to the hearts of families, friends and communities. Choosing instead to raise the spectre of fear. Creating an enemy to build loyal and devote followers, not out of respect and devotion to a kind and caring god, but out of tearing someone else down.

I know many Christians do not accept this kind of action, I know many do not even know they are doing this, they are but loyal sheep, following the dictates of men on earth that choose to live in wealth taken from a fearful mass of devotees. These leaders live for glorification of themselves, driving expensive cars, living in extreme luxury. I suspect they have not read that it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than a rich man to make it to heaven.

Just throwing back their own at them here.

Brokeback Mountain is not rare even today. Each day that goes by, I find it harder to listen to those that wish that on anyone. The words and actions of a society ready and willing to force someone into being what they can't be. It is hurtful not only to these gay men and women, but to their families as well.
"Last year, Beaumont moved to nearby Wewoka, Okla., to a one- bedroom place with 350 acres for his horses, white Pyrenees and Great Dane to roam. He said he was continuing to fight the cousins, who are suing for back rent for the years he lived on the ranch." - Partner's death ends happy life on ranch, Indy Star

Seeing the news clip I linked to at the top of this article has proven to me again, we have so far to go and I expect to make it one day.

Washington State finally made a significant step today, 30 years after the fight began in earnest. Its a big step, now we have to keep going.

I do not accept that my rights of citizenship are special when all I want and deserve are the rights to be me, just like you have.

, , , Gay, , , ,


Washington State Legislature passes Anti-discrimination bill

From: Pride Foundation

Today the Washington State Legislature approved HB 2661, the Anderson-Murray anti-discrimination bill. This is an historic day for all of Washington State's citizens that believe in fairness and equality! Thanks to the courage of our legislators, our Governor, and the tireless work of so many organizations and individuals, every lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender person in Washington will finally be treated fairly under the law. Washington State now joins 15 other states and the District of Columbia by prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Specifically, the legislation modifies the state's discrimination law to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in employment, housing, public accommodations, credit, insurance and commercial transactions. Previous to passage of this bill, the law provided protection based on race, creed, color, national origin, sex, marital status or the presence of any sensory, mental or physical disability but held no such equal protection for LGBT people in Washington.

First introduced in 1977, the bill made it to the Senate for a full vote only last year, where, after heavy lobbying from it's opponents, it was narrowly defeated. This year, however, Sen. Bill Finkbeiner (R-Kirkland) changed his vote on the bill, after releasing a statement saying that he has come to "more fully understand the level of discrimination against gays and lesbians." The bill was then introduced by Governor Gregoire herself, who has promised to sign it when it comes to her desk.

Why is this landmark so important? Here at the Pride Foundation, we frequently hear from LGBT people from every corner of our state how difficult it has been to hide who they are at work, or even at home, when not protected by law. This isn't just about those that have been actively discriminated against over the years, but the many-fold more who have lived in fear of discrimination without recourse from their co-workers, supervisors, and landlords.

Passage of HB 2661 finally lifts that unfair burden from the shoulders of LGBT people who have lived with it too long. Just as Sen. Finkbeiner's change of heart has proven, the key to changing opinions about LGBT people is to better understand them. The passing of this legislation marks an opportunity for everyone in Washington State to learn more about their LGBT friends, family and neighbors. I encourage you to use this opportunity to begin a dialogue with someone close to you. We have reached a historic landmark with this bill, but there's more work left to be done.

Today, however, we should give thanks to the countless individuals who have worked selflessly to make all Washingtonians equal under the law, including the many community members who have testified, lobbied, given donations and supported this legislation over the past 29 years. We especially want to thank Rep. Ed Murray for his dogged determination and leadership. He picked up the torch from Senator Cal Anderson, Washington's first openly-gay elected official, who championed the bill from 1988 until his death in 1995. Also Representatives Jim Moeller, Joe McDermott and Dave Upthegrove have played a crucial role in supporting this legislation and by serving as openly-gay legislators in our state.

Let this day be a celebration and acknowledgement that none of us have labored in vain.


Team USA includes Zimbabwe, Sudan and Iran

The following countries have very dubious Human rights records; Cameroon, China, Cuba, Iran, Pakistan, Russian Federation, Senegal, Sudan, and Zimbabwe. Most of us would look at that list and agree with my statement.

Guess who has joined this elite group ...

The United States of America has aligned itself with countries that have a long history of Human rights abuses, to stop gay organizations from participating in UN discussions on social policy. Of course people of faith are more than welcome as long as they don't represent faith communities inclusive of queers.

I suppose there is nothing stopping a country like Canada from sending a delegation made up of queers. Then again its not likely our next Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, will be embracing such an idea. It was just a thought.


It was always there

Brokeback Mountain has opened up another discussion for the wider community, that of gay cowboys. Now many of us have known them, there are many stories to be told here. In small towns, in the interior of BC, Montana, Alberta and even Texas, they play their desires secretly, in silence, "don't say Hi to me on the street or in the bar if you see me."

Before now, elders have told me of the old days, of being on the ranch, out rounding up the cattle and then some. It was of course an unspoken thing. Men alone together. The nature of it all lent to its silence. Men taking comfort together, getting close ...

I found a piece of the following story linked too by Washington Blade. (You will see I have added their headlines to the sidebar. I hope you find it a worth while resource.)

"Homoerotic on the range" is the title of a newspaper article in the St Petersburg Times.
The reporter reviews the subject with Chris Packard, author of the recent book Queer Cowboys.

"Queer Cowboys uses excerpts from authors such as Mark Twain, Owen Wister and James Fenimore Cooper to make Packard's case that homoerotic bonds in the Old West were common and socially accepted. Vintage photographs depict men
romantically touching or dancing together while women stand aside. Frederic Remington's sketches of cowboys sharing a haircut and exiting a tent are suggestively posed."

The article contained a portion of this poem, The Lost Pardner. I found the full version of it here at History Matters

The Lost Pardner

I ride alone and hate the boys I meet.

Today, some way, their laughin' hurts me so.

I hate the steady sun that glares, and glares!

The bird songs make me sore.

I seem the only thing on earth that cares

Cause Al ain’t here no more!

And him so strong, and yet so quick he died,

And after year on year

When we had always trailed it side by side,

He went—and left me here!

We loved each other in the way men do

And never spoke about it, Al and me,

But we both knowed, and knowin' it so true

Was more than any woman’s kiss could be.

What is there out beyond the last divide?

Seems like that country must be cold and dim.

He’d miss this sunny range he used to ride,

And he’d miss me, the same as I do him.

It’s no use thinkin'—all I’d think or say

Could never make it clear.

Out that dim trail that only leads one way

He’s gone—and left me here!

The range is empty and the trails are blind,

And I don’t seem but half myself today.

I wait to hear him ridin' up behind

And feel his knee rub mine the good old way.

Source: Badger Clark, Sun and Saddle Leather, 3rd ed. (Boston: Richard Badger, Gorham Press, 1919). Reprinted in Jonathan Katz, ed, Gay American History: Lesbians and Gay Men in the U.S.A (New York: Avon Books, 1976), 769–70.

This is only one example of the stuff out there, missed or buried by the main stream and many in the queer communities. I will be posting more of these examples. If any of you have a favourite email me and tell me or post a comment with a link.

For more on Brokeback Mountain or Gay Rights use the Technorati search box in the sidebar

lgbt, , , , ,


Broken Back Mountain

A young pastor sees brokeback mountain and finds god's message. He says ...
"While God doesn’t make a blatant appearance in Brokeback, except for a church-going reference and a wedding in a church, I do see God’s heart as a heart for people who struggle. All humanity struggles on some level, and God is in clear solidarity with human suffering. These men and their wives spend the entire movie trying to figure out what it means to exist with other people and trying to figure out who they are as individuals in the midst of difficult relationships. Here is where I think God shows up the most clearly. God understands broken relationships. Part of me identifies with this movie on a very deep level. It helps me express my dependence on God. It helps me to realize that the “Christian” world is just as broken as everyone else. It helps me share my hope in Christ." - Andrew Seely, Relevant Magazine.com

I don't know where I am in "god's" world or if I believe in god. Part of me wants to the other part says it can't be.

I am not a practising christian if that makes sense. I suppose it also means I am not a Christian.

How can I deny who and what I am. How can anyone? How can others tell me what I know is so true to me is not me. I am who I am, I didn't wake up and become who I am. I did not have a choice to be gay or straight. The right wing evangelical christian leadership does not know me, they don't want too. If they did, they would have to acknowledge I really was who I say I am.

Brokeback Mountain is the first mainstream media piece in a long time to tell it like it is. To say this is how it happens for so many. How many more lives are going to be destroyed due to an effort of the Christian Right's leaderships to make criminals of all of us.

Here in Canada we will elect today 130 to 150 such people. People that have decided themselves I am not who I am. I am a deviant, pervert or at best a lost soul.

It use to bother me alot. I recall when I was in grade 10, realizing I was different from the other boys. I did not want to date girls. I did not know if I was gay, I did know I was different. I went to the library that day, looked up homosexual in the dictionary. It said I was a deviant.

I scoured the Library for more information and guess what, not much was there. I was alone in the world. I had this big troubling thing to discuss, this huge weight. I wanted to tell my best friend, but that seemed unwise. I know today I could have but then it was way too risky.

Telling the counsellor at school was also risky. Would they tell my parents? Would they send me to a doctor? What words of wisdom would they fill me with? Send me to church?

I was a little lost. I met up one day with these mormon recruiters. They were likely 20 or 21 and god awful cute. I was hooked and still did not know really why I was. They were kind, considerate, compassinate and they liked me. Better yet I loved the feelings that emananated from them. I was dunked in Vanderhoof at 18 years of age. A Mormon.

From there life changed, the more I read, the more I heard, the more they drove me away, quietly.

We are who we are. I can not change who I am and there were a few girls that tried. I was scared to death! Brokeback Mountain could easily have been Broken Back Mountain. In respect to so many in the queer communities that have had to change, to be different, to hide who they are. The end result is a broken society, a place where no one can be themselves, living up to someone elses pre ordained role.

Today we vote in Canada for a new government. I appreciate a leader like Jack Layton of the NDP. He knows who I am, he doesn't want me to choose. Stephen Harper doesn't want to know me, if he can make an abstract argument of it, he can tell himself and others they don't need to know me either. Paul Martin uses me. He abuses who I am. Sometimes when he speaks it feels like he is raping me. He doesn't want to know me either. He wants my vote. Oh sure he likes gays, and has a few in important positions. If he knew me why would he have so many that don't know me run for his party?

My words above are not meant to single out Liberal members or voters. I focused on the leaders and how they make me feel as a gay man. I know may in the lIberal party that do support gay rights and want me to be who I am, even a few in the Conservative party. Still if Paul Martin did not need votes, last time, he would not have changed the law yet. No he campaigns again, shame.

, Movies, Films, Gay, , , , , , , Election


Larry King on Gay Marriage

I have just read Larry King script for last nights show that included Chad Allen who plays Nate Saint, one of five missionaries killed in 1956 by a tribe they were trying to reach with the Gospel. The newly released film "End of the Spear," which opened last night in 1,200 theaters nationwide.

Chad Alan is gay and his role as a star in this movie has aggravated a great number of the Christian Right. Larry King also had on the show Rev Albert Mohler, Jr the President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

King discusses the movie Brokeback Mountain, gay sex and marriage with his guests. Its a great read.


KING: Reverend Mohler, if you believe that being gay is a choice, did you choose to be heterosexual?

MOHLER: Well, in some sense yes but when I say it's a choice and I would have to go back before that to say there are desires and even what we might call a sexual or erotic profile that goes back beyond when any of us ever knew we made a choice.I don't doubt for a minute, Larry that there are millions of people who struggle with attractions to the same sex or other kinds of attractions that they don't even know they ever chose.

They may never have and as they know themselves would never have chosen them.But the big issue for all of us is how we find out what our creation was all about and what we were made for and why this incredibly powerful thing called sex is such a big part of our lives and how we are to bring it into a right alignment. In other words, there are heterosexuals who struggle with all kinds of desires that are just not right desires and when it comes right down to it I, as a Christian, believe that we are also deeply affected by sin that we don't even know ourselves well enough to know why we desire the things we desire.What I hope for is that persons, heterosexual and homosexual, will come to know the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, would come to know new life in him, would come to understand that sinners can find the only help that is -- that is worth finding and the only salvation and solution to our problems by coming to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and then understanding that God, our creator, has the right to define every aspect of our lives including our sexuality.

KING: Do you know why if it's such a beautiful thing that it's a sin to do it?

MOHLER: To do sex?

KING: Sex, why is it a sin to have sex if it's so beautiful?

MOHLER: Well, I don't think it is a sin to have sex within the confines of marriage.

KING: I mean outside of marriage, gay sex, outside of marriage sex. It's a beautiful thing. Who does it harm?

MOHLER: Well, you know, that is the problem. I can't say it's a beautiful thing. It may be something the world finds attractive. There may be pleasure in it that is passing but I think the only thing that can genuinely be beautiful is that which is also good and true and that means just as the creator intended it for us.

KING: Right but that's what you think. You don't want your thoughts to be his thoughts. The creator doesn't say because I say it everyone must do it because you have free choice right?

MOHLER: Well...

KING: So you're not making a judgment are you?

MOHLER: Well I am making a judgment...

KING: You are?

MOHLER: ...in saying that what Al Mohler thinks about this really isn't all that important but what the creator thinks about it is determinative. It's absolutely important.

It's the criterion that will be used even on a day of judgment that I firmly believe is coming when heterosexuals and homosexuals will be judged for all of our sin. And, yes, God will hold us accountable. We have free choice in terms of free agency deciding whether we're going to obey or disobey but we are accountable.

KING: But it's not in the Constitution. Jesus isn't in the Constitution of the United States. So, we're going to get into laws now.

You can read the whole article transcript here
or here if not there!

, , , , Movies, Films, lgbt, , ,

Same-sex marriage ban discriminates - Maryland

The State of Maryland has had a judge rule the state's 33-year-old law banning same-sex marriage discriminates on the basis of sex, violating the 1972 Maryland Declaration of Rights, referred to as Maryland's Equal Rights Amendment. The jJudge's ruling is the result of a case brought to the Courts by the American Civil Liberties Union.

Judge M. Brooke Murdock wrote in the decision: "The court concludes that the prohibition of same-sex marriages is not rationally related to the state interest in the rearing of biological children by married, opposite-sex parents."


"unable to find that preventing same-sex marriage rationally relates to the [sic] Maryland's interest in promoting the best interest of children."

and then

"the General Assembly may have assumed that opposite-sex marriages less frequently end in divorce, that opposite-sex couples are better parents, or that opposite-sex couples focus more on their children's education." But, he said, "these assumptions are not rational speculation; they are broad unsupported generalizations that do not establish a rational relation between same-sex marriage and the state's interest in promoting procreation, child-rearing, and the best interest of children."

Of course this decision has ticked a few poeple off, like Mathew D. Staver, the president and general counsel of the Christian Right organization Liberty Counsel, said it was "outrageous for a judge to morph into a legislator."

Liberty Counsel is endorsed by none other that Christian Right mega star Jerry Falwell, he states "I can think of no greater work being done right now in America for the sake of our religious freedom and Christian heritage than that being done by Liberty Counsel and its founder and president Mathew Staver. - Dr. Jerry Falwell, Chancellor, Liberty University

From the release ACLU has posted on their site we have this
The court ruled, “When tradition is the guise under which prejudice or animosity hides, it is not a legitimate state interest.” The opinion further noted, “The Court is not unaware of the dramatic impact of its ruling, but it must not shy away from deciding significant legal issues when fairly presented to it for judicial determination. As others assessing the constitutionality of preventing same-sex marriage note, justifying the continued application of a classification through its past application is ‘circular reasoning, not analysis,’ and that it is not persuasive.”

Finally a Judge in the United States has made rational argument against the tradtional marriage garbage of the Christian Right leadership. Just think, the Traditional case against treating Blacks equally also relied on two things, one the Bible and second the will of the majority.
“This is truly an historic moment for the State of Maryland. Same-sex couples across the state just came a giant step closer to the day when they won’t have to worry that life partners will be ignored in discussions about emergency medical care, or about the hurt and confusion their children feel when forced to explain why their parents can’t marry.” - Dan Furmansky, Executive Director of Equality Maryland.

The Washington Post reports that Nineteen gay men and women filed a lawsuit in Baltimore arguing that the state's ban on same-sex marriages violates the guarantee of equal rights under the state constitution. The state passed a law in 1973 specifying that marriage is a union of one man and one woman.

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Yours are badder than mine!

"They've been very clear about their commitment to the concept of free votes," said an operative in the xxxxxxxxx Ottawa war room.

"The socially conservative religious right has been pretty effective at recruiting a good chunk of candidates for this election. If they're a large enough bloc they're going to demand something in exchange for their support."

Is this newspaper referring to the Liberal's or the Conservative's War Room. Of course its the Liberals saying Harper's social conservatives are scarier than ours. And the difference is? I guess is its true that Harper has more. In BC however the Liberals are running third most places. Those scary Conservatives can be trumped, but it isn't the Liberal's that can do it.


true-believing Christians - It Humbled me too

Brokeback Mountain is a beautiful movie. A great story, but then I see myself in the movie, or friends, or the gay men I have met that have gone through this, or are still in the closet, scared, alone ...

"... It's been four days since I saw the film, and progressively, day after day, I have been forced to admit that I am ashamed of the way I felt about homosexuals. I literally had no concept of what life is truly like for these individuals, and must continue to be. In my heart I know that good, wholesome, long-standing friends of mine - true-believing Christians - have made life horrible for these people when they go out of their way to bad mouth them behind their backs (no one I know I think would get in someone's face), tell their children homosexuals are going to Hell, etc etc. ..." - I'm a Conservative Christian and This Film Changed My Mind

I wasn't expecting the movie to be such a success at the box office. I wasn't expecting it to win golden globes. I wasn't expecting it to do this stuff. I too am humbled.

Note: The posting by the Conservative Christian above is in dark contract to this article on Lifesite.net
Hollywood ‘Homosexualizing’ America.

Thanks to the Green Knight for pointing me to this post on the Daily Kos site.

Use the technorati search box in the sidebar for more on Brokeback Mountain here at Queer thoughts.

, Movies, Films, Gay, heath ledger

Washinton State close to Gay Rights

Washington State is looking at providing protection to Queer communities using legislation. The issue has been on and off the agenda in the Evergreen State for almost 30 years and it has never quite got there. I have many fond memories of Washington and have often wondered how it is they have never been able to pass legislation protecting gays, lesbians, bisexuals and trans folks prior to this.
The measure would add "sexual orientation" to a state law that already bans discrimination in housing, employment and insurance based on race, gender, age, disability, religion, marital status and other factors. The bill has been introduced -- and rejected -- annually for nearly 30 years in the Legislature. - Kiro TV report

In so many ways the State is progressive, at least in so far as you compate it to many other American states. The other is that many of us in British Columbia have an affinity to Washington. Its likely people in this state are more informed on Canadian issues and US Canada relations than any other American state. We see so many visit our province and we are pretty happy to have you do so.

Seattle is not just a coffee city, or wet though we know all about the wet in coastal BC. It is a progressive city, King County has long promoted anti-discrimation policies and supported education and peer projects for the Queer communities.

My first visits to Seattle involved the Marshall's Office Saloon, a gay bar in some part of the city I can no longer recall. It was a friendly place and I felt at home, arriving most weekends. Of course one of the reasons I felt at home was that I was seeing the guy that owned the place. That always helps. I was nicknamed Lil Bud as at the time Bud came out with the small beer cans. If I wasn't the lil bud I was Canadian Bacon. I learned what a Canadian hot dog was one day down on Pier. No not that, it was the large hot dog and until that day had no idea that is what a big hot dog was called.
House bill 2661: State law bans discrimination based on race, sex, religion, marital status, disability and other categories. The bill would add sexual orientation to that list. Democratic leaders expect the measure to pass the House by the end of the week. That would put the issue before the Senate.

So now Washington State is looking at legislation protecting us. I hope it happens this time. I hope and call upon all of the queer community, whereever you live in your state to take this issue up, call your local state member and local state senator. Tell them you support equality. I am sure you all know other people, from queer communities or the straight world. Call them, get them to make a call too. Don't wait another 30 years to correct this injustice.
OLYMPIA — The lawmaker tapped to speak for Senate Republicans opposing gay-rights legislation is an affable, soft-spoken man who believes gays will go to hell unless they change their ways. - Seattle Times, January 18, 2006

Local state members and senators that are supporting us with this effort rely on you to act. They are doing the right thing. Get a hold of them and those opposed to equality, be heard be seen, they deserve your support. This is not a special right, this is a human right you are asking for. Nothing less than being considered a full fledged American citizen. Take your citizenship.

Also contact Microsoft, tell them you are happy they support Washinton's effort to pass legislation for equality.

, Current events, lgbt, ,


Real Brokeback Mountain story - He cried

"... watching Brokeback Mountain - a controversial Oscar-tipped film about a gay
romance between a ranch-hand and a rodeo cowboy - he wept.

For Chuck went through the same struggle as the movie's characters when he realised it was the cowboys, not the cowgirls, he was attracted to.

The critically-acclaimed film, which opens nationwide next weekend and has been a
surprise hit in the States, brought back memories of gay-bashing.

So strong was the homophobia that it cast a shadow over Chuck's upbringing on a
Wyoming ranch.

"I thought it was an incredibly beautiful movie and very realistic," says Chuck. "And because it was set in the time and place where I grew up, there was a lot of things I could relate to. I knew I was different as a child, I just didn't know why.

"There were no gay role models in Wyoming back then."

Chuck runs his own ranch - the Five B - in Arizona with his long-term 32-year-old partner, Jay Barker."

see the story here ...

Thanks to The Binary Circumstance for this.

, Movies, Films, Gay, heath ledger

Gold on Brokeback Mountain

Updated: Brokeback Mountain takes Best Drama award!

"Brokeback Mountain" takes best screenplay at Golden Globes tonight. The screenplay was written by Diana Ossana and Larry McMurtry.

Ang Lee gets "Brokeback Mountain's" third Golden Globe award Monday night for best director of a feature film. The film won for Original Song: "A Love That Will Never Grow Old."

The lyrics to Emmy Lou Harris' song...

( Santaolalla/Taupin)

A Love That Will Never Grow Old

Go to sleep, may your sweet dreams come true
Just lay back in my arms for one more night
I've this crazy old notion that calls me sometimes
Saying this one's the love of our lives.

Cause I know a love that will never grow old
And I know a love that will never grow old.

When you wake up the world may have changed
But trust in me, I'll never falter or fail
Just the smile in your eyes, it can light up the night,
And your laughter's like wind in my sails.


Lean on me, let our hearts beat in time,
Feel strength from the hands that have held you so long.
Who cares where we go on this rutted old road
In a world that may say that we're wrong.


More Brokeback when I have it....

, Movies, Films, Gay, heath ledger

Brokeback Mountain Lifts me up

With the commercial success of Brokeback Mountain all manner of stuff is coming out of the closet into the mainstream including this little poem recorded in the 1880's. I post it here to take a moment away from the election here in Canada.

My lover is a cowboy
He’s kind, he’s brave, he’s true
He rides the Spanish pony
and throws the lasso, too
And when he comes to see me
And our vows we have redeemed
He puts his arms around me
And then begins to sing:
Oh, I am a jolly cowboy,
From Texas now I hail,
Give me my saddle and pony
And I’m ready for the trail.
I love the rolling prairie
Where we are free from care and strife,
And behind a herd of long-horns,
I will journey all my life.

Unnamed poem written in Texas in the 1880s and recorded by Charlie Siringo, a cowboy in the 1870s

Brokeback Mountain is up for the Golden Globe awards tonight. It does not really matter if it does achieve a golden globe, though it is likely to do well. The major bonus of Brokeback Mountain for its makers is its huge commercial success. For gay men in America, its commercial success means more people now get it.

The movie tells the story staright ahead. No beating around the bush. It does not apologize for telling us this love story. A movie that lifts the hearts of people who have been there, of people that can now see its not just sex! Now that is a new concept to many straight folks.

, Movies, Films, Gay, heath ledger

Some others on Brokeback Mountain ...

'Brokeback' becomes unlikely date movie DesMoinesRegister.com, IA - Jason Walsmith stunned his wife last weekend when he told her that he wanted to see ‘‘Brokeback Mountain.’’. "I heard a story ...

It seemed to us that "Brokeback Mountain" captured universal truths about love. It vividly reminded us of the tragic losses and injustice that stem from our cultural prejudice against homosexuality. - Spokesman Review

Bare-knuckle uncle was gay role model: Ledger Brisbane Courier Mail, Australia - HEATH Ledger's acclaimed performance as a gay cowboy in Brokeback Mountain was inspired by the personal experiences of his own uncle, Australian tough guy Neil ...


Harper's message to gays

Finally proof Stephen Harper doesn’t want gays to vote for him.

This Hour has 22 Minutes plays Conservative ads withdrawn at the last minute by some nervous nelly that thought they might still get some gay like Canadians like the log cabin republicans to vote for them.

These were hidden secretly within the Video Vault of CBC. Not anymore, time to tell your friends! They even dated them January 28, 2005. ummmm

Con ad 1 We’re not gays

Con ad 2 They want to hurt Families all the time

Con ad 3 Wants you to leave your Wife and marry a man

For more on Paul Martin, Stephen Harper on gay marriage and gay rights, use the Technorati search box in the side bar here and at From the Heartlands

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UnReformed Conservatives - Rob Anders

An unReformed Conservative...

"[Honouring Nelson Mendela is a] total political-correctness poster-boy thing... He was a Communist. He was a terrorist... The Liberals always deprive us unanimous consent on all sorts of provisions. They wouldn't allow us to honour the Duke of Edinburgh and the Queen with regard to their wedding anniversary..." - Conservative MP Rob Anders, explaining why he voted against a resolution to make former South African president Nelson Mendela an honourary Canadian citizen, June 6th, 2001.

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UnReformed Conservatives - Cindy Silver

An unReformed Conservative...

"...I would want to pose the question to the Senate on this issue: How would sexual orientation be protected? I have three children between the ages of 13 and 5. If this bill is passed, what we teach them at home will be different from what they will learn at school. Already, there are pamphlets dealing with homophobia. Homophobia is everyone's problem.

The fact is that I am not homophobic. I happen to believe that homosexuality is wrong. If that makes me homophobic, then these pamphlets are telling my children that their mother is homophobic and putting a very nasty name to something which I feel is a deeply held conviction." - Cindy Silver Conservative Candidate, then Focus on the Family Lawyer appearing before The Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs, to which was referred Bill S-2, to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act (sexual orientation). April 19, 1996

Did I read that right, she doesn't want her children to think she is homophobic because she has deeply held homophobic views?

"I'm not far right in my policies," she says. "People who know me are not scared." Cindy Silver in North Shore News article. The only trouble with that statement is that Cindy's best friends are located at Focus on the Family and Real Women. I am Scared!

Hiding Agendas (5): Cindy Silver's appearance before the senate

Cindy Silver worked for five years as a Legal Consultant (Public Policy) for Focus on the Family Canada. She was a (may still be) Christian Legal Fellowship member and past CLF executive director.

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Everything created by God is good

“By means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods, which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, as long as it is received with thanksgiving” - 1 Tim 4:2-4

There it is... in yellow! If you are a Christian, you believe god created man. I am one of his creations... by the way you will never find me in one of those polyester suits, that would be a sin according to Leviticus and Calvin Klein.

Now I know some of you Christians will think I am making this up. I really don't need a Bible to tell me its ok to be me. And some of you will respectfully disagree with me but then you will leave me be as it should be. Still others, they want to impose their religious beliefs through the courts, the laws. To you I will be here to help rally the good in people until you can no longer get elected Dog Catcher in the deepest darkest corner of Southern Baptist country...

I suggest you look at this post at the WarBicycle.

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UnReformed Conservatives - Art Hanger

An unReformed Conservative...

"...the consequences have been disastrous (Gay marriage in Europe). More than 60 per cent of children in Holland are now born out of wedlock. People are simply not bothering to get married anymore because marriage has ceased to have importance or even general definition." Art Hanger, Conservative MP speaking on March 31, 2005 to the Canadian Alliance for Social Justice and Family Values Association fundraising dinner that raised $15,000 for Defend Marrage Canada, an organization fighting gay rights and gay marriage. Link to Hanger's speech is in newsletter pg 18

Okay he has proof, gay marriages are causing all the straight folks to say the heck with marriage and are now living in sin. I wonder if there is any truth to the rumour that the earth is round...

UnReformed Conservatives - Darrel Reid

An unReformed, Conservative...

"foresees a day when Focus Canada drives Canada's social and moral agenda." - Darrel Reid B.C. Report (April 13, 1998)

“I think every Christian's under an obligation to change laws to reflect biblical values. Different Christians are going to try to change different laws, according to the call God gives them. You see Christians in all political parties. That reflects different understandings of what God's call is to us. That's a healthy thing. If the yeast congregates in one part of the loaf, it makes for pretty bad bread." - Darrel Reid, Then executive Director of Focus on the Family Canada.

Darrel Reid was previously Chief of Staff to Reform Party leader, Preston Manning, left the party in 1998 to become Executive Director of Focus on the Family Canada, the branch plant for James Dobson and his highly right wing Christian organization in the US, Focus on the Family. That organization was very instrumental in the re-election of George Bush. Prior to being Chief of Staff, Reid was director of research and policy for the Reform Party.

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UnReformed Conservatives - David Sweet

An unReformed, Conservative...

“There's a particular reason why Jesus called men only. It's not that women aren't co-participators. It's because Jesus knew women would naturally follow. Men, on the other hand, had to be called.” - Conservative Candidate David Sweet former President & CEO of Promise Keepers Canada - Rick Mercer's Conservative Cabinet

David Sweet is the Conservative candidate for the riding of Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale near Hamilton. Last time out he won a sharply contested nomination there before the last election; this time, it was by acclamation.

When he sought the nomination the first time, his website underscored his six-year presidency of the Canadian chapter of Promise Keepers. This time, his website says only that he headed a "national non-profit organization." Promise Keepers, a huge and growing movement in the United States, describes its vision "to challenge Canadian men to discover the incredible life quest that God has for them as revealed by Christ and the Holy Scriptures." - from Valley Skeptics

I don't have a problem with the scriptures, just the way some people like to read them. Then again, seperation of church and state eh.

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UnReformed Conservatives - David Chatters

An unReformed, Conservative...

"When you go into the issue of homosexuals and lesbians, I think it’s in the interests of society to have the right to discriminate against that group of people. ... I think society has a right on that basis to discriminate against them". David Chatters, MP Conservative for the Alberta riding of Westlock–St. Paul.

MP Chatters was the MP that introduced Bill C-213: An Act to protect the institution of marriage. Chatters is the MP for the Alberta riding of Westlock–St. Paul. The Act was presented in October 2004 and if passed would have excluded gay marriages.

Mr Chatters picked up an endorsement two days ago from Vote Marrriage Canada who are endorsing candidates that are anti choice and want to roll back equality rights to marriage.

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Bush Wiretaps Catholic Masses

Catholic News dot org has some distressing news about Bush, here is a portion of the blog

"During wartime, we really don't need to hear about Jesus fussing at Peter after he cut the soldier's ear off," said one official. "We also don't need to hear about all that turning the other cheek mess, either. What we need to hear -- and what the American public needs to hear during wartime -- is more about Jesus dividing households and such. You know, the eye for eye, tooth for a tooth passages." more here

Last year Catholic News dot org also broke news of Rollback OfferingTM Wal-Mart satire?


Stand Up to Alito!

The polls are saying 40% of identified Democrats say dump Alito, 40% say let him in and the rest don't know.

The Washington Post gets a plausable response to this poll data from Celinda Lake, a Democratic pollster. The pollster told the WP, "three factors have helped defuse what many thought would be a huge fight: the holidays, the dominance of other issues, and the lack of an effective and overarching argument against Alito by Democrats."

I couldn't agree more. The Democrats should be leaders here. Sure it would be great to find the "smoking gun" and some have been found, certainly enough to justify to a Democratic Senator that he or she has to stop his confirmation.

"A groundswell of opposition hasn't arisen," said Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Research Center for People and the Press, told the Washington Post, his organization's most recent poll showed that the Alito nomination is attracting minimal attention. "You're going to have to really get some significant news out of these hearings to move the needle in a negative way."

Moving the needle should not be the goal for the Democrats on the Alito nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States. Moving Alito out of the way should be. Fail to do this and you the United States of America moves one more step toward becoming the United Theocracy of America, a place not so unlike Iran, where diviation from the official thought can get you into serious doo doo.

How hard a concept is this for the Democrats? I am sure they get it. I am sure some will fight his nomination. What I am getting worried about here is leadership. Do leaders decide all things based on the latest poll. Think about that. Some pollster calls some poor guy about to sit down to his dinner and the phone rings. The pollster says do you think the Democrats should support the nomination of some guy named Alito to the Supreme Court. All the guy wants to do is get back to his dinner.

The Editoral in The Nation says it best ...
And never in memory has a single nomination so threatened to redirect the Court as Alito's, which would replace the pragmatically conservative swing-voter Sandra Day O'Connor. Alito's opening statement before the Judiciary Committee is January 9, but his true testimony consists of fifteen years of rulings on issues from abortion to school prayer to immigration. That record demonstrates that Alito is at odds with the interests of ordinary Americans."

Killing the nomination is the best thing the Democrats can do for the future of America. Show you stand for something and what you won't stand for!

, Politics, Republicans, , , , , Current events, Reproductive Rights,


Are the Democrats nuts!

The Democrats need to stop Alito from a seat on the Supreme Court. Need a reason why ...
"What we've worked on for 30 years, to mobilize people of faith and value in this country, what we've done through these years is coming to culmination right now," Falwell said at a rally on the eve of Alito's confirmation hearing.

"Now we're looking at what we really started on 30 years ago, reconstruction of a court system gone awry," Falwell said.

The Christian Right and the Republicans fought darn near every appointment Clinton tried to make. They went after anyone that knew a gay person, read a book by a feminist, or said the world wasn't flat.

The Washington Post today in an editorial, "Democrats Ready to Go After Alito" suggest the "Senate Democrats are expected to attack Supreme Court nominee Samuel A. Alito Jr. on multiple fronts at the confirmation hearing that opens at noon today, but their strongest ammunition is likely to come from the nominee's own hand."

I will beleive it when I see it. Too many Democrats are sitting back hoping the Republicans will sink themselves. The attitude that people will complain or see Democrats as obstructionist if they hold up Alito's confirmation is bunk.

The whole point here is to stop these people from getting to the Supreme Court. If George Bush wants to nominate someone that is not already in the hands of the Christian Right then lets talk. This person has the endorsement of the people that don't endorse anything unless it accepts the making of a theocracy.

Yesterday Howard Dean showed Democrats how to take on the media, how to address issues. Lets hope the democrats will stand for something. Be brave, the world is counting on you as is this Canadian.

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The Christian Right is hot on the campaign trail

The Christian Right is hot on the campaign trail.

Pro Marriage (Pro Harper) Network and Vote Marriage Canada have endorsed former Liberal MP Pat O’Brien and Conservative MP Grant Hill.

Pat O’Brien added that Vote Marriage Canada was also endorsing Liberal MP Paul Szabo of Mississauga South, Dan Mailer of London—Fanshawe, and former NDP MP Bev Desjarlais of Churchill.

Vote Marriage Canada is dripping with former Conservatives like BC Co-Chair Reed Elley, Atlantic Co-Chair Elsie Wayne, Quebec Co-Chair Louis DeSerres and Grant Hill.

They have managed to highlight the Liberal connections as well given the endorsements to two Liberal MP's. Electing a Liberal is no guarentee that they will vote to keep marriage equality. In fact as many as 30 Liberal MP's and candidates are against marriage for gays.

Vote Marriage is well connected to a number of Christian Right evangelicals and Conservative Catholics. Never before have social conservatives been so active in an election campaign. They set out to get Conservative party nominations and they succeeded. They are supporting selected Liberal candidates as well as you can see from the endorsements.

On Tuesday David Mainse of Crossroads Ministry brings in Tristan Emmanuel as a guest on his evangelical TV infomercial, 100 Huntley Street, to discuss traditional marriage and I assume the federal election.

Emmanuel was instramental in securing Conservative party nominations in Nova Scotia for evangelical members. Given his involvement one has to conclude he also has a Conservative Party of Canada membership.

The Canadian Christian Right is just too well connected to the Conservative Party for any reasonable person to deny it.

Failed Conservative candidate and former constituency assistant to Reed Elley, David Quist has recently taken the position of executive director at the The Institute of Marriage and Family Canada.
The Institute, being developed under the aegis of Focus on the Family Canada, will ultimately develop a staff of close to a dozen people, working out of a commodious office a three-minute walk from The Hill. Quist is currently looking for good communication and research people who are familiar with public policy issues, particularly in the marriage and family fields. - Sunday Magazine, January 8, 2006

This Institute will be the centre of the Christian Right's lobbying and political action in Ottawa. And given its connection to Focus on the Family Canada, you can expect it to be well positioned to take advantage of generous sums of funds from James Dobson and the American Christian Right. Their website is not fully operational yet as they direct you to something called Family Index.net.


Now some quotes stolen from Koby.... For your reading pleasure, please send these anywhere you want. Its important people know what the Conservatives have said and who they are.

Tiny Tory Thoughts

Myron Thompson: “I want the whole world to know that I do not condone homosexuals. I do not condone their activity. I do not like what they do. I think it is wrong. I think it is unnatural and I think it is totally immoral. I will object to it forever they attack the good traditional Canadian family unit that built the country.” (Hansard, June 15, 1995)

David Sweet: “men are natural influencers, whether we like it or not. … Its because Jesus knew women would naturally follow. Men, on the other hand, had to be called." (Christian Week November 27 2001)

Garry Breitkreuz: "In the 1950s, buggery was a criminal offence, now it’s a requirement to receive benefits from the federal government.” (The Leader-Post, March 3, 2000)

Darrell Reid: “The liberalization of divorce laws was the biggest disaster to hit Canada, short of common-law."

For more of the Conservatives, Evangelicals, Christian Right, Gay rights, Gay marriage, Stephen Harper, Tristan Emmanuel, Bishop Henry use the Technoratia search box in the side bar here and at From the Heartlands, Politics in BC, Canada and the USA.

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Soulforce finds more Hypocrisy - Lonnie Latham

In the wake of Pastor Lonnie Latham's arrest as the result of a police sting operation the issue of homosexuality and the Christian Right's hypocrisy is clear.

Soulforce is an organization trying to end spiritual violence against LGBT people. Robyn Murphy, spokesperson and director of public relations for Soulforce says, "Many people are attacking Rev. Latham for his hypocrisy, but instead we should be asking 'what informs that hypocrisy'?"

Murphy raises a good point. While Pastor Latham did in fact actively engage in supporting initiatives that denigrated and vilified homosexuality and gay people, he was obviously struggling with who he was against a monolithic brotherhood in the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).

The SBC is the second largest denomination in the United States. They have used their power and influence to roll back gay rights, to have marriage amendments made to state constitutions and to say it again, to vilify the gay community at any opportunity.

Latham of course participated in much of this. I am not sure he is gay, a few visits to a male prostitute hardly mean that. Of course this also brings up the matter of police sting operations.

I will have more on this later tonight. The experience of my partner, who spent years as Pastor in the church, in the the deepest darkest part of the SBC theocracy.

Update: My promised piece will not be available tonight. Trying for Sunday evening.

Here you can find, dripping with sincerity, links to the official statements of the South Tulsa Baptist Church, www.southtulsabaptist.org, Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, www.bgco.org and Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee, www.Baptist2Baptist.net

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Whitewash from Bush on Robertson

George Bush cleverly avoids taking on Pat Robertson and his million plus daily viewers of the "700 Club".

Bush needs help this November, he needs to re-elect Republicans to Congress and Republican Governors. The last thing he needs is a war with one of the factions that got him in the White House, the Christian Right. So what do you do when someone who speaks directly to one million plus social conservative Americans everyday and says something hateful? You send out the messenger.

American Presidents don't have to answer media questions everyday. Bush uses it to his fullest advantage. Evan Thomas and Richard Wolffe wrote in a Newsweek article of December 19, 2005...
"Bush may be the most isolated president in modern history, at least since the late-stage Richard Nixon."

And we all know how much Nixon liked answering questions.

Today when a prominant American makes comments that are as ludicrus as those made by the President of Iran, he can't issue a statement personally, you know something is up.
"Pat Robertson and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are probably beyond the point where they can be reached by embarrassment or shame. But they are not beyond the kind of strong condemnation that they have richly earned." - The Washington Post editorial

It was no accident that the Statement from the White House did not mention President Bush is right pissed off with Pat Robertson. Its the PR folks working overtime here. The White House spokes personTrent Duffy says ...
“Those comments are wholly inappropriate and offensive and really don’t have a place in this or any other debate.”

What debate are they talking about? They did not take Robertson to task for saying Sharon got what he had coming. They did not say these remarks are "unamerican" or even unchristian. The White House did not say President Bush was horrified that a Christian leader would say these kinds of things.

Now to hear NBC say it this was a stinging rebuke. They write ... The White House sharply criticized Christian broadcaster and former Republican presidential candidate Pat Robertson on Friday for suggesting that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s stroke was divine punishment for “dividing God’s land.” “Those comments are wholly inappropriate and offensive and really don’t have a place in this or any other debate,” presidential spokesman Trent Duffy said as President Bush traveled to Chicago for a speech.

Now I am no fool, I know such a statement has to have the approval of Mr. Rove. Mr. Rove is the White House. Just notice what was not said. No news clips of Bush slamming a Christian leader months before an election. At the same time the Rove White House points to the statement and say that Bush condemned the remarks.

Bush didn't even come close to condeming Robertson for his remarks. Not a chance, in fact years from now, you won't even know what the White House meant with those words. What debate were they referring to? The one on whether god is punishing Sharon or the middle east peace process?

Going into the 2006 elections Bush won't be taking shots at people who speak to the Christian Right congregation. That would be just stupid right. Why say something when you can White Wash it from the White House.

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