(Home-My Story)....... True, Tragic and Unnecessary Gay Youth Suicide Stories...................... (Español)
PART 2 (page 20 of 34)
What The Bible Says For All His Children Today - Is The Homosexual Our Neighbor?
President Signs Repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
Gary Lynn's Declaration
Technical Sergeant Leonard Matlovich (1943–1988)
The Wedding Between Tech Sgt. Erwynn Umali and
Hebrews 6:10 (New Living Translation) "For God is not unfair. . . . . ."
Acts 10:34-35 (New Living Translation) Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God doesn’t show partiality. In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right.”
Matthew 22:39 (New Living Translation) A second (commandment) is equally important: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Romans 13:8 (New Living Translation) ". . . . . If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill all the requirements of God’s law."
Is the homosexual and bisexual our neighbor?
President Signs Repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
President Obama signs the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell on Dec. 22, 2010. (Photo NPR)
Washington (CNN) -- President Barack Obama brought the long political struggle over the military's controversial "don't ask, don't tell" policy to a close Thursday, signing legislation that will bring an end of the ban on openly gay men and women serving in the armed forces. [The law took effect after the President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certified that repeal would not harm military readiness, which was followed by a 60-day waiting period.]
The president signed the bill repealing the 17-year-old law in front of a jubilant crowd of supporters at the Department of Interior. Vice President Joe Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, were among those in attendance. Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen also was present for the occasion.
The repeal "will strengthen our national security and uphold (America's) ideals," Obama said. "No longer will tens of thousands of Americans in uniform be asked to live a lie."
"I believe this is the right thing to do for our military," he added. "It's the right thing to do, period."
This is a moment "more than two centuries in the making," the president said. Over the course of U.S. history, "gay Americans fought just as hard (and) gave just as much to protect" the country as anyone else. "We are a nation that believes all men and women are created equal."
Passage of the repeal was a major political victory for Obama and congressional Democrats. Obama promised to repeal the ban during the 2008 presidential election.
The crowd chanted "Yes we can" as Obama was introduced before the bill signing -- a reference to Obama's campaign slogan.
Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank, an openly gay Democrat, called the bill's passage "the biggest single thing" in terms of the progress of gay rights in the United States.
"To see the president today put ink to paper and sign
this into law, its been a tremendous day," said Air Force Lt. Col. Victor
Fehrenbach. "He made a promise to me a year-and-a-half ago. He looked me in
the eye and said, 'I'm going to get this done.'"
Air Force veteran Jeff Cadavona said Wednesday's signing was a long time coming. "When I was in the military in the '60s -- that hammer over you for being openly gay," he said. "If they found you out, they'd kick you right out." Click Here to read the Wikipedia for the history of "don't ask, don't tell".
Gary Lynn's Declaration: The time is now; no more waiting, no more closets and hiding who we are, no more feeling ashamed because of how we were born, no more insults and jokes about our orientation, no more fearing for our safety at the hands of bullies and homophobes, no more anti-gay religious intolerance which only makes us want to kill ourselves, no more 2nd class citizenship by denying us our civil right to have our long-term monogamous unions legally recognized, and finally one more thing. If for nothing else let's do it so that gay teens have beautiful possibilities to live for just like everybody else. After hundreds of years of homophobic terror, if not thousands, enough already of pain, destruction and death! (1) Picture is a Van Nuys Junior High school photo of me, Gary Lynn, taken in 1955 when I was 14. Sigh.
Technical Sergeant Leonard Matlovich (1943–1988) was a Vietnam War veteran, race relations instructor, and recipient of the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star. Matlovich was the first gay service member to fight the ban on gays in the military, and perhaps the best-known gay man in America in the 1970s next to Harvey Milk. His fight to stay in the United States Air Force after coming out of the closet became a cause célèbre around which the gay community rallied. His case resulted in articles in newspapers and magazines throughout the country, numerous television interviews, and a television movie on NBC. His photograph appeared on the cover of the September 8, 1975, issue of Time magazine, making him a symbol for thousands of gay and lesbian service members and gays generally. In October 2006, Matlovich was honored by LGBT History Month as a leader in the history of the LGBT community.
On June 22, 1988, just a month before his 45th birthday, Matlovich died of complications from HIV/AIDS beneath a large photo of Martin Luther King, Jr. His tombstone, meant to be a memorial to all gay veterans, does not bear his name. It reads:
“When I was in the military, they gave me a medal for killing two men and a discharge for loving one.”
Matlovich's tombstone at Congressional Cemetery is on the same row as that of FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover. To read more of the life story of this LGBT hero click here. (2)
I found this moving entry on the Huffington Post, December 17, 2010 (Gary Lynn)
One of my former students served two
tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan as a Marine. Between his first and
second tour he told me that there were two of "them" in his unit. No one
bothered them but it was clear that they were not fully accepted. He did not
think the two guys had a sexual relationship, but they would go off to
"their" bars when the unit had leave.
I saw him again after his second tour in Iraq. He told me that one of "them" had been killed in Iraq, He was laying down covering fire so his "buddies" could withdraw from an ambush. Just as he was ready to pull back himself, a rocket landed on his position and he was killed. He received several posthumous commendations and a medal. He was called a hero.
After that my former student told me that the attitude changed toward the other guy. He was no longer one of "them", he was one of "us" just as the marine who was killed defending his buddies had always been one of "us."
Saw him last week, just back from Afghanistan. No casualties in his unit. He told me that all the guys in his unit were hoping the Don't Ask, Don't Tell rule would be repealed for everyone's sake.
And then read "A Gay Soldier's Letter Before Leaving For Afghanistan"
Will and Erwynn met at church and fell in love. But they had a big problem—“don’t ask, don’t tell.” The unlikely story of the first gay military union. By Katherine Goldstein|Posted Tuesday, July 17, 2012, at 6:30 AM ET in SLATE
Tech. Sgt. Erwynn Umali (right) and Will Behrens (left) at the McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst
chapel, where their civil union was held on June 23, 2012. See more photos of
their wedding and lives here.
by Jeff Sheng
It’s almost Christmas, and I’m eating lunch with Tech Sgt. Erwynn Umali and his fiance Will Behrens at a Cracker Barrel in New Jersey. Erwynn, 34, is an active-duty serviceman in the Air Force. Will, 35, is a branch manager for a financial firm. There are six months to go until Will and Erwynn get married at McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, a joint military base in Wrightstown, N.J. It will be the first publicly announced gay civil union or wedding ever to take place on an American military installation. But today is about family, not planning for the big day. With us are Will’s children from a previous marriage, his 11-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son. When the country fried steak and chicken and dumplings arrive, everyone joins hands in prayer. Will thanks God for our food and prays that I’ll make it home safely. We say amen and eat.
Little about the couple’s biographies would suggest that they would become gay rights trailblazers or find themselves on the progressive side of a culture war. Will was born outside of Chicago in 1976. His mother was a teacher. His father, a marine-turned-fundamentalist-minister, spent most of the year on the road through his work with Fairhaven Baptist church in Chesterton, Ind. Will’s father was its youth pastor and vice president of the church’s small Christian college.
Fairhaven Baptist was founded by Dr. Roger Voegtlin, a firm believer in corporal punishment. Will recalls Dr. Voegtlin giving spanking demonstrations and instructions during church. Will’s parents followed Dr. Voegtlin’s example, imposing strict discipline on Will and his three siblings. Will ran away from home twice, in fifth and sixth grade, because he was so fearful of punishment from his father.
Will attended Fairhaven Baptist Academy, the K-12 extension of Fairhaven Church. Last year on Anderson Cooper 360, former students of the academy alleged that they were subjected to a host of abuses, including violent public beatings and humiliation for minor infractions at the hands of teachers and school administrators. In the CNN interview, Dr. Voegtlin admitted that public paddlings meant to humiliate children had taken place, but he denied knowledge of other incidents of abuse that the students alleged. Will describes Fairhaven as “not a place I want to remember,” and says he’d never send his own children to school there.
As a kid, Will was passionate about music, particularly orchestra and piano. But the community preferred sports as a hobby for boys. Will wrestled and eventually became co-captain of the soccer team in high school. He couldn’t allow himself to ask, even in his own mind, whether he might be gay. He believed, as he later explained to me, that “God knows your thoughts, and if you even think something like that, God could strike you dead and send you to hell.” He also feared what might happen to him if people suspected he was gay. “Kids got shipped off to homes,” Will recalls. “There was a girls home and a boys home. If a girl got pregnant in high school, or someone suspected you were gay, they sent you away.” His sister, Jo Ann Trout, says that to Will’s parents, being gay was “like never being born to the family.” (Will’s parents did not respond to repeated requests for comment on this article.)
Will stayed true to the teachings of his parents and his church. He attended Fairhaven Baptist College, earning a degree in pastoral theology and music. He married his wife, a childhood friend and college classmate in 1998. Then they moved to New Jersey so Will could pursue a career in business. They had two children.
Around that time, Will’s parents left the Fairhaven community. According to Will, they had become disillusioned with Dr. Voegtlin’s harsh teachings and methods. They moved to a different fundamentalist Baptist church in Pennsylvania. Will and his wife found a new congregation, too. They joined Solid Rock Baptist church, where Will became the choir director. Anti-gay sermons were common at Solid Rock, but Will never dared speak up. You “could never disagree with what the church taught,” he says. Click Here to continue to read this very captivating article in Slate.
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(1) Based on a comment submitted by — rlk, chappaqua, ny, to an article entitled “La Cage aux Democrats” By Op-Ed Columnist: FRANK RICH – 24may2009 – NY Times
(2) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
A Gay Teen Short Story ♂♂
Church is so confusing for Zack. His new pastor preaches nothing but hate and condemnation of gays and lesbians, but no matter how carefully he reads his Bible, he can’t find where it says God hates him. Will things change when Zach's boyfriend Billy suggests that they all go to his church instead? Click Here or on the icon to read the story.
Click for Page 21
What Does The Church Need To Do To Make Things Right
With The Homosexual and Bisexual Community?
Gay Marriage and Gays As Leaders In The Church
Achieving and Maintaining An Attitude Of Forgiveness
Cartoon by Danziger - The Case Against Gay Marriage
below to go to:
The Anti-Gay Religious Right's Really Cruel and Idiotic Argument
Their Message to a Gay Person is: Be alone. Live alone. Die alone.
Click for Homosexuality is neither a Choice nor a Sin - Table of contents
Click for Gary Lynn's Home Page