Wednesday, May 4, 2011

We agree God wants gay people around

Steve Simon is a Democratic Representative in the Minnesota House. He is on a committee debating whether a ban on same sex marriage should be placed in the state constitution. He gives a great 3 minute speech to his colleagues about why he is voting no. A paraphrase of his remarks: If homosexuality is innate instead of learned, and is a gift from God, how many more gay people does God have to create before we agree God wants them around? I'm comfortable with a society that bends towards justice, fairness, wholeness, openness, and compassion.

The bill passed out of committee on a party-line vote. The Minnesota legislature is controlled by the GOP.

Steve and Roger Ham, a gay couple, have adopted 12 children. They adopted one and then found the boy had 4 siblings in the foster care system. So they adopted them. They also served, for a while, as foster parents and every so often they encountered another case with siblings. However, 12 is enough. The adoption agency thinks Steve and Roger are fantastic parents. The state of Arizona doesn't like the idea of gay couples adopting, so Steve is the only legal parent. This is a wonderful (and long) story in the Arizona Republic.

Ricky Santorum, formers senator and wannabe prez. candidate (just Google the name and see what pops up), was asked why he is working so hard to deny adoption by gay people. His answer was that adoption is a privilege, not a right.

Sorry, Ricky, the 14th Amendment covers privileges too, or anything in which you say I'm better than you are and I get to decide what you are allowed to do.

Google's guiding principle is "Don't be evil." They topped that by doing quite a bit of good recently. They bought a 90 second ad on the hit show Glee (topping $800K) a show that has several prominent gay characters. The ad features their Chrome web browser. The cool part is the browser is showcasing the It Gets Better project of Dan Savage and his husband. Thank you, Google.

I wrote a while back about Pam's House Blend being whacked with a lawsuit by an organization whose income is from shakedowns of blogs for posting copyright material even though the blog follows fair use guidelines. That prompted Jim Burroway of Box Turtle Bulletin to declare he will no longer quote or link to any newspaper that has joined that organization. I'll let you read the whole list, I'll only note it includes the Detroit News, the conservative of Detroit's two newspapers.

Barbara Lenk has just been approved to join the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. It is news because Lenk is an open lesbian with a wife. The two were married when the state allowed gay marriage (wow -- that was seven years ago this month!).

Friendfactor is a new gay rights organization. We need another? This one is different. We may not do something if a big organization asks, but we would if a friend asks. So this group and accompanying website runs campaigns to influence legislation by guiding people to ask their friends to call legislators. Their first big effort is for marriage equality in New York.

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