Believe it or not, corporate America is changing policies regarding “Same Sex Marriage”.

By Isis Win

Disclaimer: English is my second language and regardless of all my efforts, I fall short to master it in a way that I make myself easy to read. Please, be patient and hopefully you get the idea at the end of my text. However, feel free to leave any criticism, suggestion and comment. That will help me and expedite my learning of your wonderful but no so easy language. Thanks!


No so long ago, there was no clear positive participation from the mainstream to support LGBT issues and realm. Today, this panorama differs drastically from our recent panorama but corporate America is making a grand difference and a dent in the mind of the mainstream. During the past decade several one 100 corporations incorporated policies in the work force, hiring, provided perks, etc, to serve equally to LGBT people. These actions had been implemented by hundreds of them and now, they are supporting Same Sex Marriage. Since corporations cannot change the existing legislation to this unconstitutional denial, they not only opened their doors to LGBT workers and new employed people, but they are enacting policies that provide to their gay and lesbian workers equal services from their providers. Today, several of these corporations allow a gay or lesbian workers to include their beloved on in their health provisions package and benefits. It does not validate the civil right that according to the US constitution every single American should receive, but this is a mighty good start. Although gay and lesbian American workers expect more regarding their right to marry their chosen one, this corporate move very likely will mimic part of the desired goals based on a rightful wish. At this point, LGBT advocates and the related organizations, such HRC are only waiting for the Supreme Court to revise the constitutionality of this demand, the opposition movement, etc, in several states. Experts believe, the Supreme Court will rule out denial of this right based on the value of the constitution. The question will be if this becomes a federal mandate or states are allowed to choose how they will enact this policy.
It is clear the several organizations involved in denying this right will continue to invest their multimillion contributions to campaigns against it. Mostly religious organizations that ironically ignore the fact that separation of church and state does not allow them to attempt to “guide” the government and American people to deny such basic right and based on the Sacred Scriptures. However, candidates at the brink of elections, present their support to this religious battle and clearly to gather the support of their constituents that do not support marriage between the same-sex. This is prevalent on the republican party side but there are a few democrats politicians that oppose to this right as well. The Supreme Court and the White House have a package in their hands to either observe this constitutional right or delay it. On the long run, there will be a day in which this right is observed and no longer is a political issue in the platform of those no scrupulous politicians.
Same sex marriage has been on the table for many years now in the USA. It has created one of the most radical polemics among their opponents and supporters to a point that, when testifying to the media, their arguments fall right away through the cracks when confronted with the civil aspects of this issue. I’ve heard in many talk programs arguments on their part that do not present any other notion but the believe that marriage, “natural marriage” as they call it, can only be allowed between a man and woman. A notion that right away lose the shine they pretend to present in their effort as a part of God’s design, because the religions they use to support their position, as well states clearly, according to their very own interpretations: God intended to seed in his human children forgiveness compassion, generosity, love and acceptance to every one of his children, that would be allowed to enter “Heaven” if repented of their sins. And this cannot be a sin. Being born as God’s design and being incongruent with the established role by humans is an issue between humans, not God’s will. This regardless of the hostile antagonism represented through history, at large, and coming down to the loss of beloved family members, peers and friends and suicide to many. This to a point that, although it is federally and state illegal, LGBT people are harassed, bullied, destitute, physically and emotionally punished. This clear sign not only represents that lack of ability to exercise compassion and generosity to those that in their view lack what life only accepts and support, but as well, the mean streak represented against LGBT through history as the recent disease that killed thousands of people in our nation as the result of HIV and AIDS when they celebrated this disease and deaths. Up to date, thousands of people point this disease as a deserving punishment from God to gay people and consider it appropriate punishment to the case. However, we as well have many more folds numbers of compassionate people who have work constantly to find the means to treat the disease and find a cure. Today, more people survive this disease than ever before.
Corporate America recognizes the fact that LGBT people are as good contributors to the working force as any other human being. They recognize it is of utmost importance that they acquire the very same rights and benefits in their working force as anyone and several businesses include this initiative in their policies. Perhaps one of these days, this right no longer is denied anywhere at anytime, to any deserving member of this minority. Meanwhile, every month dozens and dozens of people and their businesses are moving to that place of support and that reflects the vision of our founding fathers. As well, it represents a higher state of human consideration among the supporters of LGBT people. This contribution of corporate America brings a tremendous positive outcome to our nation, same that at some point will reflect the evolution of our race. Although we are far superior to all other species, for some strange reason, we humans are troubled by this and ignoring the fact that animal life in hundreds of species – exhibit this very same homosexual behavior. Even theologians from all walks of life, beliefs and cultures, attest that marriage between a man and woman is not contemplated in the Sacred Scriptures but it is the result of a bad and manipulated interpretation. In my part, I believe that whatever this is for one or the other side of this issue, one greatly overlooked fact is that no one is entitled at any level, whatsoever, to make themselves the judge, jury and enforcement on the lives of law-abiding members of our society. This a phenomena speaks very eloquently of the poor moral, ethic and legal state of mind of those that not only oppose to this right, but as well desire to force the rest of the world to comply with their own view. The day the stop minding the business of others, as LGBT people actively have represented no to mind others issues through this polemic issue, we may reach a plateau in which we can mingle together and peacefully. Regardless of the differences of opinion, beliefs and lifestyles between us. Overall, we will perform better as citizens, human beings, brothers and sisters, when we exclusively remain faithful to our own choices and allow others to do exactly the same.
Thank you and congratulations to corporate America for taking the right position in this polemic issue and the very same to every individual that supports LGBT people or refrain from participating in a controlling and belittling way against them. These times are a clear indication of what we need the most: To gather our efforts and support everyone towards their well-being, peace and harmony and regardless of who they are. LGBT people care for others without making any distinction of others lifestyle, beliefs, status, etc.

A brief interruption in our already scheduled program. No more deportations of young people!

By Isis Win

In the middle of a busy end of spring, I heard president Obama announcing his command to Homeland Security Agency to halt deportation of the children of undocumented immigrants younger than 30 years of age, law-abiding and engaged into education.

Right away, right-wing politicians, including Romney, use this presidential action to attack Obama and to represent themselves as the good guys we must keep and oust Obama. Some are already talking about a “political move from Obama, to gain Latin votes”. Well, if so, good for him because Latinos were an important part of his election in 2008 and many were disappointed for no immigration reform as he promised. Obama simply said: That is the right thing to do. Indeed! Latinos that incorporate themselves into American customs, work hard to better themselves and family and feel rooted in this country as their own, deserve the right to stay and make their case in the court of law. Additionally, the law must allow them to become legal residents with a chance to become naturalized citizens.

But not all undocumented immigrants are entitled to have this same treatment.  My take about this, I would be glad to see many Latinos go back to their country if they are not law-abiding, respect the customs of this country and do not care for changing their ways. The court of law will take care of them. Sadly, there are many of those individuals in the nation and those bad apples misrepresent the good ones because Americans tend to believe that all Latinos are like them. But as well, why add more danger and risk in this country, specially from undeserving people. But what about those that are law-abiding and hard-working undocumented Latinos? It seems this is like a miniseries and in order to see the next episode, we must make sure the same characters stay in the play. Reliable sources have told me Obama’s team has been diligently working on that reform that Latinos have been waiting for. No cigar yet because this effort is considering many of the interest and views of state authorities that are more affected than the rest of the nation. States like California, Texas, etc. Can you imagine if all undocumented Latinos in LA would be deported? The thousands of vacancies that no others want to fill nor get hired for them because the work is harder than the pay they can get for. Ask most undocumented Latinos if that position is unfair between pay and the required labor. I’ve done so anytime I get a chance and they say: Gimnme the job now! And they take it and will keep it forever! I’ve met dozens of undocumented workers at Universal Studios theme park. Of course, they are “legally” in this country! Yes, so far there is no mechanism that forces employers to verify Gestapo style that they are indeed undocumented. But ask their bosses and they will say: Undocumented? They are not and if they would be, we would make them legal! Well . . .  The part of the second episode that Obama will deliver in his next period.

But I am painting the “Rosie version” of this story. The blue version says that thousands of legal Latinos will not vote for Obama, even though they did in the past election. Why not? Well . . . They fully disagree with the gay issue and Obama’s support to same-sex marriage rights. Go figure! Latinos are and have been by excellence the countries with the most macho attitude and ultra religious views! So, Obama sabotaged himself and the election by showing his support to this right. Oh! Do you know that last night he had dinner with several gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people to celebrate gay pride month? I see arrows encrusted in his chest, arms and legs by nothing else but our Latin brothers and sisters!

The news this past Friday was definitely good news, Coming from our president, this rule is to be observed by all government agencies even if the republicans demonstrate against Obama or throw tantrums in both chambers! And for those that do not read the papers often, most Americans are behind civil human rights favored by Obama! But by no means, this represents that Obama will have his chance to another presidential period. The facts on that side are that many of the very important states that supported Obama in the past election are going through an impasse because Obama’s support for many of those issues. Polls are showing that the gap between Romney and Obama had been closing in the recent weeks and those states that are not fully defined at this point, if they go GOP or the contrary can unbalance the rest of the nation. Therefore, we all that still believe in Obama or those that give him the benefit of the doubt not only will have to vote for him but we need to contribute to his campaign. Remember, we are only 5 months away from election day! So the balance should be more defined by now. But as is, there is a change we cannot take at all. Electing Romney would be the worse that could happen at this juncture, for our nation and the world! A very delicate balance of the economy in the European nations, a crisis ready to explode with Syria due to Russia protecting their military interest in that nation and the unbalance in the Persian and African nations that are threatening the balance of the world if theocratic regimes take over such is the no so good-looking situation in Egypt! We need a president with guts, a vision about political balance and not ruled by fear but justice and fairness! If Obama makes it to the White House this coming period, we have a chance but if not, it has been clear that Romney not only will be a redundancy of Bush’s regimes but will increase the gap between the 1% and the rest of the population. Something that we cannot afford at all.

Latin brothers and sisters, allow me this occasion to represent my unconditional support for Obama and inquire you to do the same. Not because we are part of the LGBT world, not because we are Latinos, but because we are conscious of what our nation, families and world need now! We cannot afford a “trial” period in which the chief sitting at the White House is trying to figure out how to make sure he would rule for a second period in 2016. Lets give Obama that chance and be behind him all the way through because that this nation needs the most, is that we all remember that whether we are LGBT, Latinos, black, Asian, whatever, we are the people who pulls the world forward and we need no more fear and instability and we can conquer that goals because, yes we can!

Reprinted from: http://xqsimagazine.com/2012/06/16/a-brief-interruption-in-our-already-scheduled-program-no-more-deportations-of-young-people/

 

Presidential Equality.

By Isis Win

This past Sunday, I watched Vice President Biden candidly say on “Meet the Press” that he has no issue about gay couples and their desire to marry.

Coming from the second highest office, this is something that cannot be taken lightly. As well, he mentioned that he believed President Obama has been supportive of LGBT people, although Biden did not compromise and assert Obama’s position. This was followed by all the news services and of course, the questions about: “A political mistake? Compromised the upcoming vote? Political maneuver?” popped wildly. However, the press had no clue in regard to the presidential take and position on this issue that had become almost as important as the economy in recent days. Previously, the press reported Obama does not support Marriage Equality.

See excerpt of this interview here: http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/video/obama-sex-marriage-legal-16312940

It is extremely hard to know what is the true level of general support for this effort and as well, the counter movement. Even after the many polls and the numbers skewed to figure the true numbers, there is no true statistic.  This is an issue that covers a spectrum much larger than left-center-right political views. Religion, moral beliefs and the personal state of mind, and as well the feelings of each person have weight in this issue. Homosexuality has been such a stigmatized issue since the earliest days of our history. Although archeological findings have much to say as to how and what changed in certain times, ostracizing homosexuality has grown on its own for centuries.  Homosexuality has been associated mostly with superstition, bad interpretations of the Bible and other sacred scriptures, but as well, through times in our history homosexuality has been considered decadent and sinful, creating a strong animosity against it. Mostly during times when homosexuality was not closeted, many high rank figures were gay and what was considered marriage in those times was common. But as well, those times were times of major tragedy and famine, such as the events during and after the fall of the Roman Empire, both abroad and their country itself. Superstition was used to justify many of those tragedies as well as many of the natural disasters of the times. The “Wrath of God” at work, and of course, religion took part in these times. However, homosexuality before and during those times, if not accepted, it wasn’t fought and committed gay relationships were allowed.

Today, after Obama’s announcement in support of same-sex marriage, this panorama has changed somehow. There is a positive joy going on around not just because the importance of the first US president supporting Marriage Equality, but as well, it is believed that this news will help the movement for LGBT equality. I have a very different take on this and trust me, I am not a cynic in this regard. The very same way discrimination against LGBT people seemed to be fading, discrimination against African-Americans seemed to be a thing of the past.  The reality is that political correctness and politeness were abandoned by many people who in theory were OK with racial equality. Something that somehow changed post Obama’s election. Something that, to my own disbelief, I’ve witnessed personally in many realms walks of life: Many voters despise Obama because he is black. The reality is, while African-Americans were accepted “across the board”, that didn’t include having a black president. A president with different ideology (socialist as alleged by many conservatives), opposition party, etc, is one thing but an African-American that will determine the future of the entire nation? That is unacceptable by many. People do not express openly their views in this regard, unless in the presence of others who they know are in the same place. I heard things such as: The trust and importance of the White House in the world will be severely demerited by a black president. A black person lacks the necessary quality and style of an American president. I even heard people calling him a monkey. The same is the case with homosexuality. Prior to President Obama’s Pro Equality announcement, a lot of people refrained from sharing their opinion openly about same gender marriage. But today, many are infuriated that our president, a Democrat, who in their view “has done nothing for the country and themselves”, has made many serious mistakes and now is supporting something that most people believe is immoral and against the biblical beliefs. I find the hatred against Obama exhibited in many of these conservatives now is a combo of hate against Obama with homosexuality. People seem to fear change more than any previous time in American history and their fear, becomes unproportional to reason and logic. It is no more than shutting the door to both issues, as much as any issue that represents change and tradition that seems threatened.

I liked Obama’s interview and what he said. Particularly when he mentioned the “Golden Rule”: “Don’t do to others what you don’t want to be done with you”. Exactly! Where would the president be if he realizes that one of his daughters is a lesbian and desires a committed and legally supported marriage? What many people fail to see, is that compassion and generosity are some of the most positive and influential forces that make everything better, for everyone. People seem to overlook the fact that freedom is a necessary and mandatory state of life to achieve the best possible growth in life. Denying legal marriage to gay and lesbians, is a form of denial of this freedom. Something that perhaps didn’t matter to them much before, but today is a vital need. Regulations and laws do not permit couples out of legal marriage to benefit from federal and state perks that come along with the accomplishments of their obligations and the necessary requirements to claim legal rights when the partner is unable to decide for her/himself or deal with the legal and necessary rights in case of death, child custody, and divorce. But all unjust civil issues take their place in the roster of what needs to be addressed at some point. Many racial issues somehow have been worked out and only time will decide how much gain comes from it. So far, African-Americans have been able to achieve higher education, predominant places in all industries and fields, including the military, and so having a president of African-American origin definitely changes that perspective for them by many folds. Black people today, especially young generations, increased their aspirations and confidence because America elected one of them.
I’ve heard educated and upper (or more) middle class people wondering if allowing same-sex marriage rights at some point will allow having a gay or lesbian (and couples) elected as an US president. This is a terrible miss and a short-sighted view because what a nation really needs and can benefit from, is having capable people in charge that are willing of giving their very best to the nation. Lincoln was not fully accepted when running for the White House chair because his education and social status. But his mind and heart were much more than brilliant and with his “limited” resources, not only saved the nation in one of the most difficult times in American history, but he pushed the nation better than what many presidents had done. Those shoes will be hard to fill for a long time.
I really hope that this testimony from the President does not do any more harm to his effectiveness and re-election goals, and helps many to persuade themselves that denying a basic civil right to a few – that is supposed to be granted to everyone, does not treat anything or anybody fairly or justly.
Apparently many people opposed to Obama and LGBT rights now – out of the blue – became very vocal and are taking initiative to broadcast their views to fight LGBT equality and president Obama. Perhaps before president Obama’s testimony supporting LGBT people and marriage equality, people who never cared nor believed this right would be granted are reacting to this news, but Obama’s support “awakened” their animosity and in just a few hours past this testimony, they became quite vocal and active to show their true sentiment. The irony of this case is: God didn’t invent marriage. Marriage is a human invention that through centuries and millennia had changed about the reasons to exist. For instance, at some point it was used to halt women from seeking relationships out of marriage and if doing so, they would be executed by law. Men were allowed to do exactly that. As well, during some history periods, this was the tool for fathers to make any claim about their children. Gay and lesbians care for legal marriage simply because they care of having the exact same legal rights all other couples do. Legal rights that will not exist for as long as their marriage is not legally recognized and granting Civil Union rights is not the same. Still is a form of control and discrimination and there is no true reason within the human realm that can justify such aberration. As well, religious beliefs must be left in the hands of the parishes the very same way the government doesn’t have the right to state, regulate, etc, them. The will of the church is free from this. Government and religion are two different and separate entities that by any means should not be mixed, as the US Constitution states. So why do people fight marriage equality as an item of biblical reasons?

The world is not going to become gay across the board because of same-sex marriage equality. There is no way that a straight man or woman is going to turn gay because nondiscrimination laws are in place. The very same way that a gay person cannot switch to being straight, heterosexual people cannot change their sexual or gender orientation; that is innate and unchangeable. Let history speak about this so people can see that homosexuality has existed through our entire presence in the physical realm and never produced any harm to anyone or anything. Nothing has changed, regardless of the many efforts through our history to fight them, and even to eliminate them, such as the genocide of homosexuals in many cultures through centuries. Middle east nations still do that!  Despite these oppressions, no one, absolutely no one is capable of changing what is built-in, what we are born with.

More importantly, it is evident that those who are allowed to be themselves, freely and without concern, have been individuals that fulfilled their role in life and often for the benefit of many others of all ethnic backgrounds, walks of life, social status, etc. regardless of all the limitations and denial of their rights. In fact, this denial is so unfair, unjust, stupid and non-sensical because many of the best contributors in all realms to the American life were (and are) people that had been ostracized by society and their obsolete rules. These people never focused on the unfairness that was imposed in them. Instead, they focused on the talents they were born with and poured all their dedication to render their best to all. And because of their pride of being, they survived all. But no one is “cut from the same cloth”, nor has the same abilities as anyone else. Some need to be supported in order to explore their gifts of birth and to not deal with a lifestyle that needs to fight everyone and the establishment. Let them live freely and join the battle of moving from our ankylosis and bring fortune and well-being to themselves and everyone. Let everyone be free! Everyone must have the right to choose whatever they wish!

I thank President Obama for taking a stand in this issue, although the possibility of making him to lose this coming election now is larger, judging from this reaction. What President Obama has done is to be himself; an honest, fair, compassionate human being and a President to all, including the underdog. Something to celebrate forever.

I know the absolute truth but you . . .

By Isis Win

It is so interesting how some of the aspects in a democratic society and process, somehow fail to deliver what originally was intended as a the main purpose of a nation that serves, supports and entitle every single citizen of the exact same rights. Those rights that were extensively examined by the founders of our nation and became the constitution of the USA. Since its inception and the following amends, the constitution aims towards the deserving freedom that every single contributor to the nation earns by abiding the law and regulations that will preserve the peace and harmony of each citizen, same that become the order and progress of the nation. Therefore a free and happy society, brings what the country needs to ensure that prosperity and the well-being of all will be. The results go both ways: to the components of this society and the nation that holds them.

Law abiding citizens that comply with their responsibilities and obligations are deserving of those liberty rights and any other provision the government creates, which will be served equally and without any distinction to ethnicity, gender, lifestyle, belief, origin, social and cultural status, etc. The constitution does not provide any “special favors” to any group, person, organization, etc. All – is about every individual that independently contributes to the positive formation and progress of the entire nation.

Jefferson, considering the measurable and important value of public happiness included in the United States Declaration of Independence the right to “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” . Which is considered one the best crafted and most influential sentences in the history of the English language. He recognized these three rights as an “unalienable rights” or sovereign rights of man.
George Mason wrote:
“That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.”

But it is interesting that one of those perks offered by democracy, has been used at large, when a legislation that has been passed to protect and provide those constitutional rights to a minority lacking of those – becomes a matter of “popular” consensus by a referendum and only to deny that passed legislation.
Nothing wrong with that mechanism, for as long as the same doesn’t violate the basic principle of granting – indiscriminately – those rights to everyone, no exception. But referendums created and presented to override the right to legal marriage to gay couples should be questioned before posted. The interesting part of all this, is  that there is no substance when it comes to any legal or reasonable principle to deny a right – that already was granted by the higher office of a state and based on that constitutional right. Religious, moral or anything beyond the scope of the legal realm doesn’t suffice to derail something that has been established as a constitutional legal right. But those referendums keep coming and attempting to override that passed legislation. I am not a constitutional lawyer and sadly my ignorance in that department will not help me to present the necessary legal arguments that are violated with such referendums. But just common sense tells me that they are way wrong and out-of-place.
 
Looking a little beyond this constitutional and legal aspect, we can see the main issue at stake, somehow, most miss to see it or address it: There is no individual, organization, law or regulation that entitles anyone to decide how others may live their own life. But somehow those that are against those rights for that minority of the minorities, feel that somewhere marriage between a man and a woman, is written in stone that and that kind of marriage, is exclusively the only one that can  take place in our society. Is it that those religious minds suspect that if this constitutional right is addressed and federally enforced, those gay couples may seek for religious marriage? Give me a break!
 
Interesting! for a lack of a better word, theologians, historians, anthropologists and archeologists had found no sound evidence to such in the sacred scriptures. Not to mention the fact that the basic principle of all religions establish – that every single human being must be loved, accepted, supported and forgiven when wrong. To make this case even more compelling, there is no evidence in the sacred scriptures that presents that homosexuality as wrong, unnatural or a matter of personal choice. So where does this come from? The undeniable fact here is, that some people strongly believe to know the only truth, even if such goes against their own religious principles and as well is a total denial of equal liberty rights to all. We can go even deeper in that regard, when we ask: why those individuals tend to believe that they are the only holders of such truth? But frankly, that is not of my business as much as it is not theirs to analyze, judge, ostracize and sentence those that they are unable to recognize and accept. However, from the civic point of view, it is rather revolting that those uptight and judgmental individuals fail to recognize that gay people seeking for the right to marriage – are as good contributors to the well-being of the nation – as perhaps they are. They work, pay taxes, respect the law, are loving people, etc. And all they ask is the acknowledgment of being who they are: equal to all and entitle to legal marriage that will provide them the same rights their opponents receive. But it is not just the civil right what they seek for. Anyone who desires to commit into legal marriage, desires to do so because, they like the rest of the population, they aspire to help with the foundation in which society has been built on. They want to participate in the well being of the nation with every single aspect of the established, working and organized society they live in.
Their love for each other will note impaired by this denial and their commitment always existed since the moment that they committed to each other. But that “doesn’t suffice” to validate their commitment and the recognition they aim for, which is for the well-being and benefit of our nation and society. How ironic this is, when at least 50% of the heterosexual couples are already divorced, the majority pregnancy cases in the US are in single women under 30 years old, the numbers of family less children sky rocketed in the last few decades, thousands of children lack of any nurturing family and most crimes, come from those that never had an opportunity to become law-abiding citizens, because they are unrecognized and lack of all opportunities.

Same gender marriage will pitch in – tremendously – in addressing and correcting some of those problems. In fact, more than half of the gay families opt for adoption. And there is no evidence of any sort, that kids growing up in a same gender couple family are dysfunctional, less human, disrespectful of the law and much less, not loving people. Many of the kids from gay couples I’ve met through my kid’s events, schools, etc, are some of the most loving and compassionate kids I’ve known. But those that propose these referendums, as well those that vote for them, seem to know the truth better than the rest of the American people. Even better than those gay couples.

More ironic is the fact that not everyone is against same gender marriage. The majority of the people under 30 yo are in favor of same gender marriage rights. But today, baby boomers , the flower generation, are much older and they’ve forgotten what they learned, when they were young as their kids are today. As well, it is overwhelmingly clear – that the advocate efforts of some religious groups (#1 the Mormons) are the reason this legislation has been threatened and defeated before (Prop8) and possibly legislation in those states that already passed this constitutional legislation, will be defeated again and again, until this case goes to the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court will not have any other saying but to speak in favor of the constitutional rights of every American. Just the very same way that inter-racial marriage became protected.

But I have another point in this regard, that is as valid and solid as the previously mentioned. We are not in the middle ages. Science, sociology, history and many other fields had proven consistently that homosexuality is a natural event in our species , records existed since our early days of history, there is nothing wrong with it and going against it, reflects a deep lack of compassion, understanding, fear and plain ignorance. And that doesn’t match our needed progress in any field or history. Or is it human nature to always have an issue to go against and a certain group of people? Specially a minority? There is no evidence to this notion but that the individual that feels, thinks and acts that way, have an internal and very personal issue about what they are against. And their issue has nothing to do with the people they are against, because there is no foundation or evidence to their sentiment. The reason they have no other argument than to use something that is not even proven, such as the Sacred Scriptures they assert. However, it seems “they know the truth and the only truth” but those are against to it, in reality, know nothing. They are just holding their sentiment based on their very personal opinion. A Freudian projection of some sort? Therefore, they feel obligated to fight them at any cost. Also, they take the law in their own hands. They police the order they believe should be, they try to enforce it and they do whatever it takes to keep it that way. And the cost of this illegal efforts is a tremendous waste of money, time, and it damages the establishment, the uneducated and fearful society because it plainly disseminates discrimination towards those that never have done anything to deserve such. This is nothing different from what today is not illegal anymore, such as interracial marriage, rights for women, desegregation, religious freedom, etc, etc, etc, The same items that  were removed from our unspoken “laws” of our ancient past and were nothing less than a disgraceful violation to humanity and harmonious order.

Nevertheless, the most of all annoying aspects of this discriminatory initiative of some religious groups, is that the only argument they present to advocate against gay couples, is nothing else than their moral and religious views. Same that had not be proven by any means in terms of any biblical validation and the separation of church and state suppose to go both ways. No one is advocating about any of the above beliefs or religions, so what is the excuse those jealous have to make their case, out of what has been clearly legislated and protected by our constitution? These referendums that attempt to derail any constitutional right, do not deserve to become a matter of democratic process, because no one has any negative evidence proof this attempt. And is a violation to the liberties that all Americans deserve and are granted. Civil union is not the proper measure to be granted by state governments because such is not a validation of that right and as well, for as long as this right is not federally addressed and corrected, gay couples will continued being unrecognized as law-abiding and deserving people, as the constitution and the law states should be.

I am not attempting to state that (as they like to think and act) I own the universal truth about this issue. Therefore I know better than they do. I am just expressing my own view based on a little more educated place. I am not seeking myself to marry anyone, same gender or the opposite. I do not have a family member that wishes to receive this right. Yes, I know of people who wish to be able to do so but my investment is not based on my own belief or wish. I am just expressing something that once taken care of, for good and enforced to the dot, will deeply and positively affect an area in our world and nation, that has been for the longest neglected and unspoken. And that only is because those against this, are extremely vocal and proactive to enforce their own set of beliefs and the rest of the people prefer not to get involved because – for starters – this is not a business that belongs to anyone but those that wish, aim and aspire to get it legally granted. The very same right that you and I receive and most take for granted. Marriage is about commitment into a monogamous, steady and loving establishing of a family. It is recognized as a right to one of  the basic principles that establish a positive future of a functional and progressive society that up-keeps a nation. Nothing more, nothing less. Those referendums should be denied by the local governments and they should use their resources in something that offers true promises to our democratic process, state and nation.

Shoot, shut, fear, hate but it will change nothing

By Isis Win

“Marriage is an institution that builds character, dedication, trust and love. Everyone should be welcome to commit!” IW

Over the last 20 years, the US has been witnessing the extremes of the spectrum between LGBT intolerance and activism. It didn’t start just 20 years ago. New York City faced the Stonewall Riots in 1969, a quick and decisive start to fighting bigotry, stigmatization, and violence perpetrated against gay, lesbian and transgender people in the city. Those same protests triggered a national movement.
At Stonewall, what supposedly was another moment of harassment, repression and arrests against LGBT people turned into several days of violence in the physical and political realms. Gays and lesbians joined the victims of the New York Police Department, which was protected by all the city authority figures of the time. But the mainstream as well joined the revolts in anger at the unjust, illegal and unconstitutional efforts of the authorities in the Big Apple. The authorities were overwhelmingly outnumbered by the crowds who supported the LGBT resistance.  With the Stonewall Riots, LGBT people had changed their tactics from assimilation and concealment to open protest and rebellion, tactics that, in the long run, stopped the LGBT harassment in that city.
As well, in 1966 at the Compton cafeteria in San Francisco, California, the same situation took place and City Hall was, at some point, surrounded by thousands of people demanding justice and freedom for the victims.
But those riots didn’t stop the many acts of violence against gay and lesbians, and as well, discrimination was rampant in most cities across the US. In rural areas being gay or lesbian was the equivalent of wearing a sign asking to be a victim of a crime of hate, therefore for the longest time, gays and lesbians were heavily closeted.
As well, during those days, the American Psychiatric Association labeled homosexuality as a mental/pathological disease and only after a long study and a voting process, was it removed from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders list.  Homosexuality went through diagnostic changes in 1974 and 1980, and in 1987, sexual orientation was finally removed from the DSM.  Sexual orientation is no longer considered anything else but a natural fact of Mother Nature. Today, science has been able to reliably establish: the causes for homosexuality and gender incongruence are physical, neurological and bio-chemical events that take place during pregnancy and intrauterine development. It is all part of Mother Nature, and there is nothing to be understood, but rather, it is something to be accepted, respected and honored. It is interesting that a few ancient cultures not only honored them, but placed them high in the hierarchy of human nature.

At the time of these riots, activism started to take new heights and several organizations, strong in both numbers and capital, started to address issues of discrimination and violence directed at LGBT people at a legislative level. The issues were illegal, violating Civil Rights protected by the Constitution. In a few words, those issues were primarily a violation of the Separation Clause of the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution (and consequent amendments) that protect freedom. Freedom, that for some strange reason, bigots ignore, based on their personal beliefs, conflating moral and legal issues, and as well ignoring that the separation of church and state goes both ways. The state cannot mind the church’s business and the church cannot mind the state’s business. But the church is blatantly ignoring this, and in the last 10 years, their money and members have been actively advocating against those rights granted by the Constitution.
Clearly, the Victorian actions of Anthony Comstock  (1873 Comstock Law) and its consequences prevail, even during this age of amazing technological and industrial progress. It is ironic that the US has actively defended civil rights in many countries for so long, but here in the US, LGBT people, their families, and activist organizations have to advocate and work really hard for those denied rights, rights that were granted in the Constitution, but “removed” by intolerant and fearful vigilantes of morality. It is a clear fact that there is no other option at this point but to seek state and federal legislation that explicitly protects those minorities and their rights. But there is a true and dangerous enemy to those efforts. Considering the fact that gay, lesbian and transgender communities are far outnumbered by close-minded bigots, the battle has been taken to a new arena: the judicial world. If and when these issues are brought to the mainly conservative Supreme Court, legislation either will be created to insure LGBT protection or to see that existing Civil Rights based on the First Amendment will be observed, enforced and protected.

In several states, especially California, a group of the Mormon church worked nonstop to derail the right to same-sex marriage and they won, a right that previously was signed and passed into law by the authorities in that state. Legal same-sex marriage came to an end because those rights that took decades of efforts were unsurprisingly fought by the Mormons. It has been established that the propaganda payed for by them cost more than 10 millions dollars. Now Massachusetts is looking at the same scenario in the upcoming weeks. A referendum will be held, and who knows what the outcome will be. Somehow, I am optimistic because that state is more progressive than California.

During the last two elections, and even more so during this one, advocates against those constitutional rights guaranteed to everyone, including LGBT people, are making their voices heard by the political seekers for the official presidential nomination of the Republican Party. They know well that their monies can buy a lot of favors. But as well, two top contenders, Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman, are Mormons, and they’ve expressed their views against gay and lesbian people. It is amazing and revolting that this nation, which is known world-wide for its defense of constitutional rights, is ignoring the fact that the denial of gay and lesbian rights (much like the denial of the right to abortion), are plain violations of the American Constitution. But as well, no GOP candidate or their supporters have been capable of stating that those issues should not be of campaign significance, but rather, are only personal views of each individual. Because they are religious or moral views, the best of that those antagonistic members of our society can do is to discuss those problems that they see, but not to try to enforce their views through their financial, verbal, or voting power. This constitutional violation is as bad as it would be if those that support gay and lesbians rights were to take their complaints against those churches or religions that attack what is nothing else but the right to live accordingly to everyone’s preferences or choices to the government.  LGBT equality is a case of personal freedom granting every single civil right to every American without any exception.

The US constitution clearly states that every single American citizen is entitled to live freely, express themselves with the same freedom, and that no belief or creed can rightfully attempt to change that. Those that do make such changes should be made responsible and be taken to the court of law, because that vital and constitutional right should be protected at all cost. But instead, politicians make a mockery of that right by playing their cards in such a way as to gain the vote and financial support of those individuals that lack even the required common sense of being a voter. The very same way the government should respect religions, their members and the beliefs of those religious minds, religious or moralist vigilantes should respect our constitution, the same that is the cornerstone of this nation.

We’ve gone through decades and decades of horrendous crimes of hate against LGBT people. Crimes that are only comparable to the suffering and punishment that African-Americans faced before segregation was eradicated, and to what the Jewish people faced at the hands of the Nazis. But this is the second decade of the 21st century. We know way better about human and civil rights and yet we still are attempting to negotiate whether those rights will be observed and enforced? It is even worse, when those rights become part of the voting process to office. How blind must people be to fail to realize that these issues, for as long as they exist, will derail the basic principles of what this nation is about, and not just the LGBT people! In fact, those that are fighting same-sex marriage do so because they judge it immoral, but they are unable to present any substantive proof that such an assumption is correct, and do not even look at the fact that their efforts, by themselves are immoral and go against all the grain of their faith. Even theologians of all venues have consistently stated that there is no entry in the Bible that states such condemnation against homosexuality. Theologians, anthropologists and archeologists have a total different interpretation of Biblical citations, finding that they have nothing to do with pointing to gay and lesbians as undeserving creatures; not by God, Jesus Christ nor any of the apostles. There is no evidence for that. So, what entitles someone on that side of the fence, to take the lead and bring to the table antagonism against LGBT people and homosexuality when there is no true argument to fight it? No, they have no right to do so, therefore they buy favors from the politicians with their money and vote. After all, not even a president of the US can do anything against those rights, because it would be a violation of the Constitution and such can be heavily penalized, even for an US president!
But let’s not forget that marriage right is exclusively about a legal union of two committed people and such come with legal rights, as much as legal obligations, and that marriage was instituted for the preservation of a stable society that contributes to the well-being of their nation. Whether gay and lesbian people are granted that right, or not, they will remain as a couple and their contribution for the country will be alike. The difference will be that marriage rights, such as tax, legal, health and financial benefits are denied to them. So they have to contribute but get no benefit for their contributions? It simply makes no sense but as well, it is plainly unfair and illegal.

Candidates to legislative office will promise you, swear to you, you name it, that they will fight against same-sex marriage, fight the repeal of DADT, and block all rights to LGBT people but they will never achieve any of that. In fact, all they can do is to mess up this process so badly, that in the long run it will end up in the hands of the Supreme Court, which will have no choice but to defend the Constitution.

It is in the best interest of humanity to remove any traces of stigmatizing, discrimination and plain old intolerance. After all, we all have to share our world, nation, neighborhood, etc, but it works better if we all are amicable, rather than not. It is just a matter of time. Meanwhile bigots can spend their fortunes, lobby politicians, buy favors, even take a personal retribution against LGBT people but all their efforts are vain and futile because more and more people are becoming conscious about those issues that not long ago were under the veil of darkness. Not long ago, and for far too long, myths about homosexuality were propagated by those who are unable to find compassion, consideration, understanding and as well who are full of arcane ignorance. So, shoot, shut, fear, hate but it will change nothing. The natural course of human understanding, freedom and compassion will reach almost everyone sometime soon. And you if really hate it, just remember and vote for your favorite candidate and at the end, you will get what you truly deserve. More importantly, LGBT people will get their well-deserved rights.

A cornerstone has been achieved.

By Isis Win

A major cornerstone has been achieved with the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” – DADT. The compromise that President Clinton settled for after negotiations to halt expulsion and criminalizing gay and lesbian members of the armed forces in the military in December 21, 1993, has come to an end.

Before Clinton’s compromise, gay and lesbian soldiers were criminally prosecuted, sentenced, jailed and expelled from all the branches in of the military, just because they were homosexual. Many served long jail sentences and all were discharged with dishonorable records that made for them impossible to pursue a career as officers of law enforcement and as well, to collect the benefits they worked for during their years in the military. But DADT was far from being the right measure. The result forced gay and lesbian troops to hide their “sexual preference”, or rather, who they really are. However, for the first time in history, gay and lesbian people were able to apply to service without having to face criminal charges for joining the military. That is, as long as the kept their sexual preference secret. Nevertheless, they still were stigmatized if discovered and it wasn’t uncommon to learn that soldiers against homosexuality denounced them in exchange for benefits and favors. As well, victimization of homosexual soldiers was a fact of life in the forces. Many criminal acts against gay were ignored.

Many Americans considered DADT unjust, unfair and illegal. President Obama during his presidential campaign promised members of the military, their family members, friends and supporters to repeal this compromise and allow all gay and lesbian soldiers to serve the military without having to conceal their personal and intimate sexual preference.

The fight to repeal DADT wasn’t an easy task to undertake. There was antagonism from all venues, particularly from the House of Representatives. Congressmen were concerned about losing their seats in the house because a large number of their constituents manifested opposition towards repealing this measure. It required a massive lobbying on the part of the average citizens who made thousands of calls and sent thousands of letters to the legislative body, The White House and the military authorities. As well, all advocacy entities invested millions of dollars to lobby at all levels for the repeal of this unjust compromise. I am extremely satisfied of being to be one of the millions of people who invested time in making this change to take place.

On the side of the White House, President Obama gathered the military brass to get involved in the making this change. The White House placed all their weight to the military members to make this possible. Prior to the repeal, the military went through a series of considerations to study the possibility and consequences of this change.

DADT never reached a plateau to be considered by the Supreme Court but a number of times it came quite close. Then, advocacy institutions and mainstream people at large, placed a lot of pressure to on the Congress. The Congress just did what they know how to do best: Promise to consider it and possibly vote in favor when the bill would reach the Congress. Personally, I witnessed during a HRC (Human Rights Campaign) visit to my local Congressman (I was one of the HRC advocates) promising to vote in favor of the repeal. But as well, he claimed being realistic, stating that if support from the brass wasn’t there, the bill would never pass. However, my Congressmen never hid his support for the repeal. Perhaps, one of the reasons he never reached reelection. How sad is that?

Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell now is a thing of the past. It is history and passing this repeal is not just a mere political maneuver. The brass, at the insistence of President Obama, considered the situation, studied it and passed surveys among the troops to assess their sentiment about the possible repeal. The surveys revealed 80% of the troops supported the repeal. As a result, the top brass opted for training the entire armed forces in regards of to how to deal with any possible scenario that could contradict the passing of the repeal. 96% of the troops passed through this training. Then, top military presented their results to the White House and the repeal was announced.

Leadership in all the military branches, were quite clear to the troops stating that any action against the repeal or gay and lesbian soldiers would not be tolerated. It became a top order and soldiers are to obey orders regardless of anything.

DADT now is history to be celebrated. One battle has been won and many others still are on the burner. The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) fights the exclusion of Federal recognition of same-gender marriage. A constitutional right denied to gay and lesbian people.  At some point, DOMA will be brought to before the Supreme Court, where it hopefully will be declared unconstitutional. Federally recognized marriage between persons of the same gender will become another gain in the realm of obsolete civil rights infringements against the people of the United States and gay and lesbian people. Until this happens, however, this is a sad panorama as is. For instance, many Post-operative transgendered people, have to remain legally under their born marker, otherwise their marriage becomes illegal and invalid.

Hopefully, we will reach this needed change soon but it is extremely difficult to predict it due to the actual political situation between Republicans and Democrats. More specifically, those Republicans who are campaigning against President Obama. Opposition to same-gender marriage has become a matter of propaganda against the President. Barring same-sex marriage recognition is based on an erroneous argument denying the validity such marriages as a constitutional civil right. Despite this fallacy, it is has been used as propaganda to stir the conservative population against this right. All based on obsolete and ankylosed beliefs that are no less than a pure reflection of ignorance and fear. Nevertheless, republicans use fear and fundamentalists’ beliefs to catapult their candidacy among the American people. This sad reality not only presents the poor panorama of the integrity of the patriotic obligations of any member in government, but as well, their manipulation of the facts to represent themselves as the best next president. It is evident, people at times tend to become blind and these campaigns, loaded with lack of intolerance and defamation, are clearly a sign of the breakdown of basic initiatives, politics, and policies that supposedly are for the best of the nation and represent the will of all the people of the United States of America. Nevertheless, just like in the era of segregation, they only serve a sector of the population and ignore the one that has been actively seeking for the right change.

It isn’t like the nation is not facing more important and detrimental problems that threaten the well-being of all Americans. In fact, one item that seems to be missed in this political arena of today, is the fact that rich people have paid much lower taxes for many years and republicans use President Obama’s initiative to increase their tax quota to attack him as an unpatriotic American or President. Looking back into our recent history, we can’t overlook the fact that the previous administration made a few vital and drastic mistakes during their administration. Mistakes such as poor planning post invasion of Iraq, the removal of Hussein and the placement of a legitimate regime that will conform to the will of the Iraqi people. These terrible mistakes have cost trillions of US dollars and the loss of thousands of lives. American and Iraqi lives. It is one of the main reasons we have a high deficit today. More importantly, the war in Iraq brought a lack of stability in the Persian region due to the presence of the American troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. As if all of these are not enough to concern any politician and American citizen, we are passing through the worst global financial crisis, the same that started right here, in our own land, under the watch of the previous administration.

So what will the presidential candidates do about that, instead of making charges against and throwing dirt on the current administration? It is time for every single conscious adult American to take the gavel in hand and let the presidential candidates know that it is enough of false rhetorical garbage and promises and it is about time to pitch into getting our nation out the hole we already are in. If they claim they can only do that once they are in the White House and cannot do anything before, why would we vote for them? These times demand contributing what we can – as we can, instead of invalidating what others do about it. However, the example from the competing republicans is clear and good enough to invalidate them as a possible next ruler. The bottom fact is that we are – where we are – and we need to change it.
But this is not just about the politicians and their politics. This is about every single individual because after all, we all are involved. Just like the soldiers that offer their own lives for the sake of us. I am glad for them since now, they have the right to be who they are as they are. 60 thousand gay and lesbian soldiers now can relax or better, feel being appreciated by all Americans. Today, we are a better America.