May 31, 2012

East Harlem: Joel Morales, Age 12 Ended His Life

Joel Morales, a very bright East Harlem 12 year old with a seemingly brilliant future ahead of him, ended his life late Tuesday night. News accounts report that Joel was 4 feet 9 inches tall, and because he was short and smart, he was a frequent target and victim of bullying, enduring constant taunts, harassment and threats. NBC New York reports:
"A 12-year-old East Harlem boy harassed by school bullies about his intelligence, his height and his deceased father hanged himself in the apartment he shared with his mother Tuesday night, according to multiple reports.

Joel Morales transferred from P.S. 102 to P.S. 57 after enduring incessant taunting for months, but the bullying persisted at his new school, the fifth-grader’s family told the Daily News.

Kids chased Morales, threw sticks and pipes at him and teased him for his smarts and his 4-foot-9 stature, the boy’s aunt Angelica Babilonia told the paper.

Morales’ anguish reached a breaking point when bullies taunted him about his father, who died when he was four years old, relatives told the News and The New York Post."

I have to emphasize that bullying in itself does not cause an adolescent to attempt suicide. There are other co-factors that contribute to an individual deciding to harm themselves. 

Depression, or a major depressive disorder, is almost always present, and if you are a parent, that’s what you need to be looking for. Your child will be depressed before they consider harming themselves. Get your child medical help, because depression is treatable. Don’t tell your child to deal with it, or get over it, or work through it. Get them professional help.

Observe mood, sleep patterns, and any changes in your child’s daily routine. Is your child spending more time alone than he or she normally does? Are they sleeping more? Sleeping less? Are they staying home from school more to avoid the bullies? Watch for the symptoms so that you can get your child help and treatment, if necessary.

Depression and suicide is treatable and preventable, and it’s up to parents and family members to intervene and prevent a child from taking their life or harming themselves.


Joel - you and your family are in my heart, my thoughts, and my prayers.

RIP Joel Morales.



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© 2012 JIVEINTHE415.COM

Wackadoos: Another Baptist Pastor Says All LGBT People Should Be Killed

Baptist pastors Curtis Knapp, Charles Worley, Sean Harris, and Bryant Wright preach anti-gay hate.
Seneca, Kansas Baptist Pastor Curtis Knapp: Kill The Gays


The latest Baptist blunder comes to us from Seneca, Kansas, and the “homosexuality is disgusting and vile so the government should kill homosexuals” Baptist church. In his Sunday sermon from New Hope Baptist Church - Pastor Curtis Knapp went on a 60+ minute anti-gay tirade in his sermon, The Curse Of Homosexuality. Like the Reverend Sun Myung Moon, Pastor Knapp has NO LOVE for his neighbors, and doesn’t even pretend to.

He begins by saying “homosexuality is a filthy perversion, a degrading passion, and an indecent act, and an abomination.- which means it’s nauseating to God. It’s sickening, disgusting, evil and vile.”

He said “homosexuality is a filthy perversion, a degrading passion, an indecent act. and an  abomination.which means it’s nauseating to God. It’s sickening, disgusting, evil and vile.”

The Baptist Pastor also calls on the government to execute all homosexuals, as he claims that it’s prescribed in scripture.

Knapp is yelling “They should be put to death. Oh, so you’re saying we should go out and start killing them, no?. I’m saying the government should. They won’t, but they should.”
“You say, ‘Oh, I can’t believe you, you’re horrible. You’re a backwards neanderthal. of a person.’ Really? Is that what you’re calling scripture? Is God a neanderthal, backwards in his morality? Is it His word or not? If it’s His word, he commanded it. It’s His idea, not mine. And I’m not ashamed of it.” 
“He said put them to death. Shall the church drag them in? No, I’m not saying that. The church has not been given the power of the sort, but the government has. But the government ought to kill them. You got a better idea? A better idea than God?”
His tirade continues non-stop, and you can hear young children in the congregation responding to his sermon. If I had a child I would drag my kid out of there.
“Homosexuality is a choice. Anyone who tells you anything else --- is lying.” 
“They are violent aggressive people, and they won’t stop until all the people are converted. They infiltrate classrooms, they infiltrate the news media, they infiltrate the  legislatures, and they infiltrate Hollywood. They legislate hate crimes so you can’t even speak against it in some places.”  
“They are pushing, pushing, pushing, and use fear and intimidation.” 
“They can have a gay pride celebration in your church, and if you don’t, you’ll be sued. Hutchinson Kansas - Lawrence of course has it.” 
“Dan Savage --- you heard of him?  The anti-bullying speaker who’s homosexual? They had a national journalism conference with all kinds of high school students. He ridiculed the bible repeatedly, he insulted Christians, he laced his speech with vulgar sexual innuendos, and said I hope you are all using birth control, and ignore blankety blank in the Bible.” 
That’s your friendly....’just want civil rights’ community.” 
“We’ll all be dead, or we’ll be in jail, because we can’t say one word against them.” 
“We need a national revival  - our nation has been given over to filth.”
What Dan Savage said at the journalism convention was absolutely correct, and this blasphemous wackadoo is illustrating Dan’s point perfectly.

Just a few weeks ago I wrote about the current president of the Southern Baptist Convention, who gave a sermon entitled “When Homosexuality Is A Big Issue.”

Georgia Pastor Bryant Wright, from the “homosexuals are nazi’s” Baptist Church said [bold emphasis mine]:
"If someone says homosexual desires are God given, and they can't change, it's one of those common lies of the devil that is repeated over and over again, that now the American public believe it is true. We learned from the Nazi's in World War II that they believed if you repeat an outrageous lie over and over again, it becomes more believable, and the public will finally embrace it."
Of course Pastor Wright neglects to explain that if God doesn’t want “homosexuals” around, why does he keep producing us?

I think that Wright, who tears a page out of the Bryan Fischer and Scott Lively history books, since he conflates “homosexual propaganda” and “nazi propaganda,” is more than pissed that the American public has accepted the truth, that homosexuals are born gay.

North Carolina Pastor Sean Harris, from the “beat the gay out of your children” Baptist Church, anointed his congregation with special dispensation to physically attack their child if the child acts “gay.” Pastor Harris said [bold emphasis mine]:
Dad’s, the second you see your son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist. Man up. Give him a good punch. Ok? "You are not going to act like that. You were made by God to be a male and you are going to be a male."
We have North Carolina bigot of the year, Pastor Charles Worley, from the “round up the queers and lock ‘em up” Baptist Church, who stood before his congregation less than two weeks ago, to say that all LGBT people should be imprisoned and confined to an area protected by an electric fence, so that we will all die out. [bold emphasis mine]
"I figured out a way to get rid of all the lesbians and queers, but I couldn't get it passed through Congress. Build a great, big, large fence.....150 or 100 mile long.....put all the lesbians in there, fly over and drop some food. Do the same thing for the queers, and the homosexuals, and have that fence electrified so they can't get out…And you know what, in a few years, they'll die out."
Should the gay community start to fear the Baptists?

Or should the Baptists be afraid of themselves?

VIA Good As You


straight talk in a queer world.     jiveinthe415.com         
© 2012 JIVEINTHE415.COM
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Video: Religious Extremism in San Francisco



In San Francisco we have our religious extremists too. Here is Mark Trout at a recent Board of Supervisor’s Meeting, speaking to the elected politicians about their being minister’s who are promoting homosexuality (which is punishable by death).


The footage is real - and this occurred just about 5 weeks ago.





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© 2012 JIVEINTHE415.COM

The Catholic World Report: Gay Marriage Has Been Around Forever


The Catholic World Report has an article dated May 22, 2012 by Benjamin Wiker that is bound to stir up some controversy. Entitled “Gay Marriage—Nothing New Under the Sun,” the article gives some historical context for marriage equality.

The article is clear thatgay marriage and homosexuality were part of the moral landscape faced by the first Christians in Ancient Rome.”

Given that the gay marriage agenda will be increasingly pressed upon Catholics by the state, we should be much more aware of what history has to teach us about gay marriage—given that we don’t want to be among those who, ignorant of history, blithely condemned themselves to repeat it.

Contrary to the popular view—both among proponents and opponents—gay marriage is not a new issue. It cannot be couched (by proponents) as a seamless advance on the civil rights movement, nor should it be understood (by opponents) as something that’s evil merely because it appears to them to be morally unprecedented.

Gay marriage was—surprise!—alive and well in Rome, celebrated even and especially by select emperors, a spin-off of the general cultural affirmation of Roman homosexuality. Gay marriage was, along with homosexuality, something the first Christians faced as part of the pagan moral darkness of their time.

What Christians are fighting against today, then, is not yet another sexual innovation peculiar to our “enlightened age,” but the return to pre-Christian, pagan sexual morality.

I highly recommend reading the article, as it’s another tool in our arsenal.


Benjamin Wiker, Ph.D. has published nine books, with another coming out this fall with Scott Hahn, Politicizing the Bible: The Roots of Historical Criticism and the Secularization of Scripture 1300-1700. He is currently working on a book on the Church and the secular state. His website is www.benjaminwiker.com.



straight talk in a queer world.    jiveinthe415.com         
© 2012 JIVEINTHE415.COM

May 30, 2012

These Companies Earned A Spot In Anti-Gay Hall Of Shame

Corporate Hall of Shame


Boycott Schmoycott? Boycott these Stores!

It’s hard to believe that it was 10 months ago that I called for a boycott of retail stores, who were supporting anti-gay organizations through affiliate marketing. I have not updated the boycott information here in quite some time, though it's all updated as of today. While I’ve kept an eye on things, I haven’t closely  monitored any developments at the Christian Values Network/CBGB/Charity Give Back Group, in quite some time as things have been rather quiet.

In a rather interesting development, the number of charitable organizations that you can kick some money to has increased, and now includes a number of cosmetology schools, Berlitz language schools, a number of different trade and vocational colleges, as well as some community colleges and universities like Delaware State University and Northern Michigan University. There are also hundreds of churches included on the list of charities.

For some reason, the Family Research Council (FRC) and Focus on the Family (FOF)   are no longer on the list of charities. While they aren’t on the “official list” - that doesn’t mean that they are no longer part of CVN/CGBG.

Summit Ministries, the anti-gay Colorado church, is still included on the list of charities. New to the list is the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, and the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification of Tennessee, the “church” founded by the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. Reverend Moon claims that “homosexuals and fornicators are like dirty dung eating dogs.” For a man who claims he’s a “Christian” - “love thy neighbor” is not in Moon’s repertoire. He also claims:

That is what is called free sex. What is the meaning of lesbians and homosexuals? That is the place where all different kinds of dung collect. We have to end that behavior. When this kind of dirty relationship is taking place between human beings, God cannot be happy.

As if that’s not bad enough, when he was trying to convince Jews to convert to his religion, he said:

Who are the Jewish members here, raise your hands! Jewish people, you have to repent. Jesus was the King of Israel. Through the principle of indemnity Hitler killed 6 million Jews. That is why. God could not prevent Satan from doing that because Israel killed the True Parents. Even now, you have to determine that you will repent and follow and become one with Christianity through Rev. Moon.

Right. Repent and follow you? Let me run for the hills first, or I’d rather watch paint dry, than follow and become one with you Mr. Moon.

While many of the retail organizations I worked with directly, to sever affiliate ties with CVN/CGBG, have not re-established a business relationship with CVN/CGBG, some of them have.

ESPN Shop, The NHL Shop, The NFL Shop, Macy’s, Petco, PetSmart, and Walmart are all retail organizations I worked with, who are supporting these organizations again. Walmart likes to have it both ways, and they reneged on their commitment to equality, so that isn’t a surprise. The others are a surprise. 

Barnes and Noble is a new retailer who is a part of the affiliate network, as is Starbucks, Dockers and Levi’s. I will be contacting each of them before the week is out. Delta Airlines removed themselves again, and Sprint, and Target - who I bugged the crap out of, and recruited San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee to my cause so that he could do the same, have removed themselves.

How legitimate businesses, and global brands, can financially support these anti-gay homophobic groups is unfathomable to me. Either a company doesn’t perform the due diligence they should, or they simply don’t care.

I’m going to revisit this in the weeks to come. If you see a retail organization where you shop, don’t hesitate to contact them to tell them what you think about them supporting these organizations. If anyone looks at the list of charities and sees an anti-gay, or anti-Semitic, or anti-women organization that I missed - please let me know.



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© 2011-2016 JIVEINTHE415.COM

Bible Scholar Accuses Piers Morgan Of Promoting Bigotry

Piers Morgan with Jonah Goldberg
Piers Morgan with Jonah Goldberg
If This Is The Standard - Most Print And Broadcast Journalists Are Guilty Too

I received a press release this morning from Bible scholar Dr. Joel M. Hoffman. In his press release he accuses CNN host Piers Morgan of promoting bigotry. His charge stems from the fact that during 2 interviews with Pastor Joel Osteen, the homophobic Osteen stated emphatically that “scripture calls homosexuality a sin,” and as any student of the Bible knows, the Bible doesn’t say that at all. Hoffman feels that because Morgan didn’t challenge Osteen directly, and failed to ask him to cite where in the Bible it says that “homosexuality is a sin,” that Morgan is promoting bigotry.

Hoffman, an internationally recognized expert in Bible translation, posted the entire letter on his personal blog after he sent it to Morgan and his staff.

The controversy stems from two on-air interviews Morgan conducted with Pastor Joel Osteen. During both, the religious leader told Morgan's television audience that "Scripture calls homosexuality a sin." Hoffman wrote to ask why Morgan didn't ask Osteen where the Bible says that.

"The Bible doesn't say that homosexuality is a sin," Hoffman wrote.

Hoffman elaborates in follow-up comments on his blog.

He acknowledges that "in some places the Bible seems to frown on certain homosexual acts," referring to often-cited passages in Leviticus, Romans, and I Corinthians.

But Hoffman also claims that other parts of the Bible actually encourage same-sex marriage.
In addition, he explains that the Bible uses the word "sin" frequently, but never in connection with homosexuality, and that furthermore, the Bible only addresses very specific aspects of homosexuality, not homosexuality in general.

"Why didn't you challenge Pastor Osteen on this basic factual issue?" Hoffman asked Morgan in his letter, adding that the "glaring omission is all the more surprising in light of [Morgan's] claim to be 'challenging.'"

Is Piers Morgan promoting bigotry, or is Piers Morgan just not doing a great job? Maybe he doesn’t do enough homework prior to an interview, or doesn’t feel confident about his knowledge of scripture, to challenge a pastor.

Piers Morgan interviewed homophobe Kirk Cameron, and Cameron said the same thing and he wasn’t challenged either. Morgan interviewed homophobic Congresswoman Michele ‘Bozo’ Bachmann, and she inferred the same thing. Morgan tried to draw her out to make an outrageous anti-gay comment, but she wouldn’t bite.

Piers Morgan is not homophobic, and is very gay friendly. I think that Morgan is much like his brethren in the press corp. Most television news personalities are not familiar with Leviticus, the Book of Romans, or Deuteronomy. They have no confidence about what the Bible says, so they never challenge the incorrect Bible interpretations.

Rather than challenge Piers Morgan, I would challenge all of the television news reporters and personalities about this issue. They are all guilty of not doing a very good job when interviewing these so called religious leaders, with the exception of Anderson Cooper and maybe Brooke Baldwin. Our community should be challenging all reporters.

I think that just picking on Piers Morgan is a little unfair and disengenuous, when this is a widespread problem in journalism.





straight talk in a queer world.    jiveinthe415.com        
© 2012 JIVEINTHE415.COM

San Francisco Celebrates Golden Gate Bridge Anniversay Like No Other City Can

San Francisco celebrates 75th Anniversary Golden Gate Bridge
  
San Francisco is a world class city, with a world renowned symphony, ballet company, and opera company. Home to storied sports franchises, the super bowl champ 49er’s, and the former tenants of New York’s Polo Grounds - our baseball Giants. We have great art museums, incredible shopping, and some of the best restaurants in the world.

If this city is lacking in any way, I’d say that we don’t have the iconic architecture that other cities have. The iconic victorians in our residential neighborhoods are wonderful and unique, and those drafty dames are hard to heat, and expensive to maintain, and they don’t build them anymore.

We have some noteworthy buildings, like the Transamerica pyramid, Coit Tower, 555 California  (formerly the B of A building), and one of my favorites - the underappreciated César Pelli designed JP Morgan Chase building at 560 Mission Street. One of the reasons for this is that we live in a nanny state here in San Francisco. Everyone wants to have a say about anything and everything, from what the building looks like to the height and everything in between. As such, we have lots of nondescript buildings downtown.

There are good things about living in a nanny state, and bad things related to that, but the quality of life and the city services available to residents are second to none.

One unique characteristic unique to our small city - since we live at the tip of a peninsula surrounded by water on 3 sides, are the iconic bridges. 

San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge Eastern Span Construction
San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge Eastern Span Construction
The Bay Bridge connecting San Francisco to Oakland and the east bay stands tall, overlooking the embarcadero. The bridge opened to traffic 6 months prior to the Golden Gate Bridge, so like its more famous sibling, it’s 75 years old too. It’s really 2 bridges, consisting of the eastern and western spans. The eastern span is going to be replaced, and the construction work is nearing completion. It’s currently scheduled to open Labor Day weekend 2013. After the new span opens, the old span will be demolished.

The eastern span had a portion of the bridge collapse during the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, so a new bridge was desperately needed.

San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge Map
This past Sunday there was a huge city celebration for the Golden Gate Bridge and her 75th birthday, culminating in a fireworks show, and I must say they were fantastic. Despite the winter chill and fog for most of the day, the sky cleared in the evening, and the spectacular fireworks with the bridge in the background, was amazing.

There seemed to be lots of tourists, and when the fireworks started, it seemed that everyone was a San Franciscan. (A word to the wise - don’t ever call our city San Fran or ‘Frisco. Aside from marking you as an out of towner - it annoys the locals big time, myself included).

Our hometown paper, the San Francisco Chronicle described the celebration:

A waterfall of light cascaded from the Golden Gate Bridge and lit up the night Sunday as fireworks turned the San Francisco Bay and shoreline into a kaleidoscope of color.

Thousands of people from all over the Bay Area lined Crissy Field to see the show and celebrate the 75th birthday of the majestic span.

"It was beautiful how the city put together such spectacular fireworks," said Fernando Tercero, who came from San Jose with his wife, Jisselle, and son Fernando Jr. to participate in the waterfront celebration. "I've never seen anything like that. I've been to many events, but this is No. 1 on my list."

It was the culmination of a daylong party including live music, art shows, boat parades, tearful renditions of "San Francisco (Open Your Golden Gate)" and happy, enthusiastic crowds bedecked in fleece and sweatshirts.

"It's one of the most beautiful pieces of artwork in the world. What more is there to say?" said John Moore, an air-traffic controller from Rohnert Park, who walked across the bridge with his family Sunday. "We wouldn't miss this."

Golden Gate Bridge officials wouldn’t allow the crowds to walk across the bridge like they did when the bridge turned 50, but it was still fun nevertheless. If you can make it to the centennial celebration in 2037, I would highly recommend that you go. With any luck - I’ll see you there!

Do you have a favorite San Francisco landmark? If you do I’d love to hear what it is.





“San Francisco”
From the 1936 film “San Francisco”

Music by Bronislaw Kaper and Walter Jurmann
Lyrics by Gus Kahn

San Francisco, open your Golden Gate
You'll let nobody wait outside your door
San Francisco, here is your wanderin' one
Saying I'll wander no more.

Other places only make me love you best
Tell me you're the one in all the golden west
San Francisco, I'm coming home again
Never to roam again

San Francisco, right when I arrive
I really come alive
And you will laugh to see me,
Perpendicular, hanging on a cable car

San Francisco, let me beat my feet
Up and down Market Street
I'm gonna climb Nob Hill, just to watch it get dark
From The Top of the Mark

There's Brooklyn Bridge, London Bridge,
And the Bridge of San Louis Rey
But the only bridge, that's a real gone bridge,
Is the bridge across the bay to

San Francisco, I'm coming home again,
Never to roam again, by God
San Francisco, I don't mean Frisco
San Francisco, here I come!




straight talk in a queer world.      jiveinthe415.com         

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