Posts tagged gay
Scouting for boys
Memo to BSA: All forms of homosexuality is a sin against God…looks like it’s time to re-write the century-old oath.
Boy Scout Oath
On my honor, I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight.
“And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.” Romans 1:27
From AP: GRAPEVINE, Texas (AP) — The Boy Scouts of America threw open its ranks Thursday to gay Scouts but not gay Scout leaders – a fiercely contested compromise that some warned could fracture the organization and lead to mass defections of members and donors.
Of the roughly 1,400 voting members of the BSA’s National Council who cast ballots, 61 percent supported the proposal drafted by the governing Executive Committee. The policy change takes effect Jan. 1.
“This has been a challenging chapter in our history,” the BSA chief executive, Wayne Brock, said after the vote. “While people have differing opinions on this policy, kids are better off when they’re in Scouting.”
However, the outcome will not end the bitter debate over the Scouts’ membership policy.
Liberal Scout leaders – while supporting the proposal to accept gay youth – have made clear they want the ban on gay adults lifted as well.
In contrast, conservatives with the Scouts – including some churches that sponsor Scout units – wanted to continue excluding gay youths, in some cases threatening to defect if the ban were lifted.
“We are deeply saddened,” said Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s executive committee after learning of the result. “Homosexual behavior is incompatible with the principles enshrined in the Scout oath and Scout law.”
The Assemblies of God, another conservative denomination, said the policy change “will lead to a mass exodus from the Boy Scout program.” It also warned that the change would make the BSA vulnerable to lawsuits seeking to end the ban on gay adults.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry also expressed dismay.
“While I will always cherish my time as a Scout and the life lessons I learned, I am greatly disappointed with this decision,” he said.
The result was welcomed by many liberal members of the Scouting community and by gay-rights activists, though most of the praise was coupled with calls for ending the ban on gay adults.
“I’m so proud of how far we’ve come, but until there’s a place for everyone in Scouting, my work will continue,” said Jennifer Tyrrell, whose ouster as a Cub Scout den leader in Ohio because she is lesbian launched a national protest movement.
Pascal Tessier, a 16-year-old Boy Scout from Maryland, was elated by the outcome.
Tessier, who is openly gay, is on track to earn his Eagle Scout award and was concerned that his goal would be thwarted if the proposed change had been rejected.
“I was thinking that today could be my last day as a Boy Scout,” Tessier said. “Obviously, for gay Scouts like me, this vote is life-changing.”
The vote followed what the BSA described as “the most comprehensive listening exercise in Scouting’s history” to gauge opinions.
Back in January, the BSA executive committee had suggested a plan to give sponsors of local Scout units the option of admitting gays as both youth members and adult leaders or continuing to exclude them. However, the plan won little praise, and the BSA changed course after assessing responses to surveys sent out starting in February to members of the Scouting community.
Of the more than 200,000 leaders, parents and youth members who responded, 61 percent supported the current policy of excluding gays, while 34 percent opposed it. Most parents of young Scouts, as well as youth members themselves, opposed the ban.
The proposal approved Thursday was seen as a compromise, and the Scouts stressed that they would not condone sexual conduct by any Scout – gay or straight.
“The Boy Scouts of America will not sacrifice its mission, or the youth served by the movement, by allowing the organization to be consumed by a single, divisive and unresolved societal issue,” the BSA said in a statement.
Since the executive committee just completed a lengthy review process, there were “no plans for further review on this matter,” the group added, indicating it would not be revisiting the ban on gay adults anytime soon.
Among those voting for the proposal to accept openly gay youth was Thomas Roberts, of Dawsonville, Ga., who serves on the board of a Scout council in northeast Georgia.
“It was a very hard decision for this organization,” he said. “I think ultimately it will be viewed as the right thing.”
The BSA’s overall “traditional youth membership” – Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts and Venturers – is now about 2.6 million, compared with more than 4 million in peak years of the past. It also has about 1 million adult leaders and volunteers.
Of the more than 100,000 Scouting units in the U.S., 70 percent are chartered by religious institutions.
Those include liberal churches opposed to any ban on gays, but some of the largest sponsors are relatively conservative denominations that have previously supported the broad ban – notably the Roman Catholic Church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Southern Baptist churches.
While the Southern Baptists were clearly upset by the vote to accept openly gay youth, the Mormon church reacted positively.
“We trust that BSA will implement and administer the approved policy in an appropriate and effective manner,” an official LDS statement said.
The National Catholic Committee on Scouting responded cautiously, saying it would assess the possible impact of the change on Catholic-sponsored Scout units. The BSA, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2010, has long excluded both gays and atheists.
Protests over the no-gays policy gained momentum in 2000, when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the BSA’s right to exclude gays. Scout units lost sponsorships by public schools and other entities that adhered to nondiscrimination policies, and several local Scout councils made public their displeasure with the policy. source – AP
NEW YORK (AP) — The number of gay and bisexual characters on scripted broadcast network TV is at its highest-ever level in the season ahead, according to the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. The total on cable television is also going up.
The 17th annual “Where We Are on TV” report, released Friday, found that 4.4 percent of actors appearing regularly on prime-time network drama and comedy series during the 2012-13 season will portray lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender characters. That is up from 2.9 percent in 2011, which saw a dip in what had been a growing annual trend.
The study reviewed 97 scripted TV programs scheduled to air in the upcoming season on the broadcast networks, counting a total of 701 series regular characters. The study found that 31 of them are LGBT characters.
ABC has the highest amount, with 10 out of 194, or 5.2 percent, of their regular characters identified as LGBT.
After leading last year, Fox ranks second with six LGBT characters out of 118 total series regulars, or 5.1 percent.
CBS was saluted as much improved, with four out of 142 LGBT series regulars, or 2.8 percent, up from 0.7 percent last year. Among CBS’s new fall series is “Partners,” a comedy about two childhood friends and business partners, one of whom is gay and in a relationship. The network’s lineup represents “an authentic and conscious effort by CBS to improve its diversity,” the study said.
Regular gay and lesbian characters on what the study termed “mainstream” cable television has also risen this season to 35, up from 29 last season.
Among those networks, Showtime leads with 12 LGBT characters. The study also cited HBO, FX, Adult Swim, ABC Family, MTV, Syfy and TeenNick. The HBO drama “True Blood” remains cable’s most inclusive series, featuring six LGBT characters.
After leading last year, Fox ranks second with six LGBT characters out of 118 total series regulars, or 5.1 percent.
On broadcast TV, male characters (64 percent) continue to outweigh female characters (36 percent, including the transgender character Unique on “Glee”). Compared with last year, African-American representation has grown from 9.9 percent to 12 percent, while Hispanic representation has decreased from 5.6 percent to 4.1 percent.
“It is vital for networks to weave complex and diverse story lines of LGBT people in the different programs they air,” said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick. “More and more Americans have come to accept their LGBT family members, friends, co-workers and peers, and as audiences tune into their favorite programs, they expect to see the same diversity of people they encounter in their daily lives.” source – CBS Washington
The Few, The Proud, The Gay
RELATED STORY: Click here to read about ‘The Ordinance of the Amorites’…
An openly gay marine has caused a stir online after sharing the traditional home-coming first kiss with his boyfriend in Hawaii. Sgt Brandon Morgan of Oakdale, California, was captured as he jumped into the arms of boyfriend, reported by International Business Times to be called Dalan Wells.
The pair embraced and locked lips as they were reunited following the end of Morgan’s Afghanistan tour with the US Marines. They join a longstanding tradition of military personnel vying to share the ‘first kiss’ with their partners on returning home from operational tour.
The picture went viral after being posted on the Gay Marines Facebook page and popular gay blogs Joe.My.God and Towleroad, receiving more than 18,000 ‘likes’ and almost 4,000 comments since Saturday.
‘Welcome home and thank you for your service!’ wrote one commenter. ‘This is an awesome picture! Love knows no gender, race, creed or sexual preference.’
‘Welcome home Marine!’ wrote another. ‘Thank you for your service! As a veteran of the U.S. Army it brings tears to my eyes to see you be able to express your love without fear. God bless you and your BF. May you have many more years together!’
During his deployment Morgan recorded a Christmas message dedicated to ‘all my friends and family’ but without mention of Wells.
Responding to Facebook comments he described Wells as ‘the giant in the photo’ and quipped ‘can’t believe how many shares and likes we have gotten on this’. He added: ‘To everyone who has responded in a positive way. My partner and I want to say thank you.
‘We didn’t do this to get famous, or something like that, we did this cause after 3 deployments and four years knowing each other, we finally told each other how we felt.’
The photo of Sgt Morgan and his partner comes five months after the military’s ban on openly gay service expired. Their ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy that had banned openly gay men and women from serving in the US military ended last September. source – Daily Mail UK
Rewriting Genesis: Adam and Steve
“Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed [them] all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.” Luke 17:28-30
From MSNBC: Senators voted 28-21 to approve a bill to legalize gay marriage in the state. The measure now moves to the House, which has enough support to pass. Governor Chris Gregoire says she will sign the bill if it makes it to her desk, Seattle TV station King 5 reported.
The Senate adopted a series of amendments intended to clarify religious exemptions in the legislation, the Seattle Times reported.
Legislators debated the measure for two hours Wednesday night at the capitol in Olympia before voting.
Opponents promise a referendum in November if the bill is signed into law. source – MSNBC
INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana’s first specialty license plate that benefits gay causes is now available for purchase. Bureau of Motor Vehicles spokesman Graig Lubsen said the Indiana Youth Group plate has been available since Dec. 28. The plate bears a logo with hands in rainbow colors reaching up.
Some $25 from sales of each $40 plate goes to the group serving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth. The Indianapolis-based organization operates an activity center, helps develop Gay Straight Alliances in high schools and assists communities in forming youth services. The group serves about 1,400 youths and young adults ages 12 to 21, The Indianapolis Star reports in a Wednesday story.
“All the money will go directly for services to these young people,” Youth Group Director Mary Byrne said. She said Indiana is the second state in the nation with a specialty plate benefiting gay youths. Maryland was the first, she said.
“It’s an incredible way for people to support IYG; for people, especially youth, to know about IYG; and for people to show their pride in who they are,” Byrne said.
The Youth Group sued the state in 2010 after the BMV turned down its request for a specialty plate in 2008 and 2009. The Youth Group alleged the BMV used arbitrary and unconstitutional standards in deciding whether to approve plates for nonprofit groups. Lubsen said the Youth Group was rejected because of concerns that it did not have statewide impact and did not ensure that funds from plate sales would not be used for salaries.
Both sides later reached an agreement and the lawsuit was dismissed. The Youth Group then applied again and the plate was approved. The Youth Group is one of 10 organizations approved for specialty plates for 2012, bringing the total number of Indiana specialty plates to 104, Lubsen said.
More than 420,000 specialty plates were sold last year, generating more than $11 million for the sponsoring organizations, he said. source – Courier Journal
The Ordinance of the Amorites is now official policy
Click to read Homosexuality vs. God’s Holiness by end times author Dr. John McTernan…
WASHINGTON — The United States will begin using American foreign aid to promote gay rights abroad, Obama administration officials said on Tuesday.
President Obama issued a memorandum directing American agencies to look for ways to combat efforts by foreign governments to criminalize homosexuality.
The new initiative holds the potential to irritate relations with some close American allies that ban homosexuality, including Saudi Arabia.
But Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton underscored Mr. Obama’s remarks, in a speech delivered in Geneva in connection with International Human Rights Day on Dec. 10.
“I am not saying that gay people can’t or don’t commit crimes,” she said. “They can and they do. Just like straight people. And when they do, they should be held accountable. But it should never be a crime to be gay.”
The directive comes after the Parliament in Uganda decided to reopen a debate on a controversial bill that seeks to outlaw homosexuality, a move that could be expanded to include the death penalty for gay men and lesbians. That bill had been shelved earlier this year amid widespread international condemnation.
“I am deeply concerned by the violence and discrimination targeting L.G.B.T. persons around the world,” Mr. Obama said in the memorandum, referring to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, “whether it is passing laws that criminalize L.G.B.T. status, beating citizens simply for joining peaceful L.G.B.T. pride celebrations, or killing men, women and children for their perceived sexual orientation.”
Specifically, Mr. Obama said in the memorandum that the State Department would lead other federal agencies to help ensure that the government provides a “swift and meaningful response to serious incidents that threaten the human rights” of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people abroad.
It was not immediately clear whether that would mean a cut-off of American aid to countries that target the gay community, but it suggests that American agencies will have expanded tools to press foreign countries that are found to abuse the rights of gays, lesbians and others.
(Click here to read about the radical Far Left’s plan to destroy the US military…)
Based on findings in the State Department’s latest annual human rights report, several countries, including several vital American allies, could face increased pressure over their treatment of gays and others.
The report said that in Saudi Arabia, under Sharia law as interpreted in the country, “sexual activity between two persons of the same gender is punishable by death or flogging. It is illegal for men ‘to behave like women’ or to wear women’s clothes and vice versa.”
The law in Afghanistan “criminalizes homosexual activity, but authorities only sporadically enforced the prohibition,” the report said. And in Pakistan, homosexual intercourse is a criminal offense, though rarely prosecuted.
Homosexuality is accepted in most of Europe. In India, the law permits consensual sexual activities between adults. In China, according to the report, “no laws criminalize private homosexual activity between consenting adults,” and “homosexuality was decriminalized in 1997 and removed from the official list of mental disorders in 2001.”
The annual State Department rights reports already provide one tool for influencing foreign treatment of gays and lesbians, through the “shaming” function of those reports. Mr. Obama’s memorandum called for similar, separate annual reports on treatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
With the 2012 presidential campaign already under way, Mr. Obama’s action was bound to be viewed through a political lens, and it drew fire almost immediately from one Republican candidate, Gov. Rick Perry of Texas. Saying he had seen news reports that the Obama administration “wants to make foreign aid decisions based on gay rights,” Mr. Perry said in a statement, “This administration’s war on traditional American values must stop.”
He added: “President Obama has again mistaken America’s tolerance for different lifestyles with an endorsement of those lifestyles. I will not make that mistake.”
Gay people tend to vote Democratic more than Republican, and have generally been supportive of Mr. Obama, with many praising his move to repeal the ban on gay people serving openly in the military. But he has faced criticism for failing to clearly support a right of same-sex couples to marry.
The presidential memorandum said that federal agencies engaged abroad had been directed to “combat the criminalization of L.G.B.T. status or conduct abroad; protect vulnerable L.G.B.T. refugees and asylum seekers; leverage foreign assistance to protect human rights and advance nondiscrimination; ensure swift and meaningful U.S. response to human rights abuses of L.G.B.T. persons abroad; engage international organizations in the fight against L.G.B.T. discrimination.”
Mr. Obama has frequently made use of presidential directives to protect the rights of gays and lesbians, particularly when political sensitivities might have made legislative action impractical. source – New York Times
Welcome to the church of Laodicea
MILWAUKEE (AP) — A man who left his Presbyterian ministry in California more than 20 years ago after telling his congregation that he is gay was welcomed back into the church leadership as its first openly gay ordained minister.
In a quavering voice ripe with emotion, 56-year-old Scott Anderson on Saturday told the hundreds of friends and backers who packed Covenant Presbyterian Church in Madison, Wisconsin for his ordination ceremony that he never thought the day would come.
“To the thousands of Presbyterians who have worked and prayed for almost 40 years for this day, I give thanks,” Anderson said. “And I give thanks for those who disagree with what we’re doing today yet who know that we are one in Jesus Christ.”
When he was presented to the crowd, audience members gave him a thunderous standing ovation and began roaring with cheers.
“That was very atypical of Presbyterians,” Doug Poland, an elder at Covenant Presbyterian Church, told the Wisconsin State Journal. “Usually our hands are in our laps.”
Anderson was closeted when he served as a minister in Sacramento, Calif., from 1983 until 1990. When a couple threatened to reveal his sexual orientation, he came out to his congregation and resigned because the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) barred homosexuals from serving as ministers.
But things changed last year when the church’s national assembly voted to remove the ban, clearing the way for Anderson’s ordination.
Nancy Enderle, the interim executive director of the Covenant Network of Presbyterians, told The Associated Press the ordination was a glorious celebration that touched everyone, especially Anderson.
“He’s a very dignified and poised person but you could tell he was deeply moved,” she said.
Anderson currently serves as the executive director of the Wisconsin Council of Churches in Sun Prairie, which is near Madison, where he lives. His ordination means he’ll be ordained to the specific job he already has. The only change is that he’ll now be able to administer sacraments such as communion. He could also become a parish minister, a role he said he might consider in three or four years.
Anderson chose the Rev. Mark Achtemeier of Dubuque, Iowa, to deliver the sermon Saturday. Achtemeier used to be one of the most vocal opponents of gay ordination, but he announced a complete turnaround after friendships with gay Christians prompted him to re-evaluate scriptural teachings about homosexuality.
He told attendees Saturday he hopes Anderson’s ministry will bring “healing good news” to all those who have felt “ostracized and alienated” from the church, the State Journal reported.
Supporter Bob Lorenz told WISC-TV the ordination was long overdue for someone of Anderson’s talents.
“Ordaining him is just recognition of the gifts God already gave him,” he said. source – Yahoo News