Positive LGBTQ letter to the editor

Woke up a bit early this morning and had a nice surprise.  Ian Price of Friendship took the time to write in with his thoughts on the impact of the Pittsburgh LGBTQ Pride March.

In the spirit of Pittsburgh's 250th anniversary, we stop and reflect on the great things Pittsburgh has achieved and on the wonderful things that continue to grow. One of these needs to be the lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender community and its contribution to the civil rights movement. Forty years after the Stonewall riots, pride is not only about the “gay” movement, but the rights of all Americans to conduct their lives according to their own consciences. Forty years ago, we asserted that we would not live in a police state, that we would not live double lives, and that American society would be a wonderful blend of differences.

Pride celebrates, supports and welcomes all people, not only the ones under the LGBT banner. Pittsburgh should be proud that it has cultivated and grown such a robust community dedicated to this fundamentally American ideal.

Ian is the first person I've seen put Stonewall into the context of Pittsburgh's 250th Anniversary and how very apt that is!  Pittsburgh continues to boast a thriving gay community with the welcome addition of the Gay & Lesbian Community Center's relocation to Grant Street — just a few steps away from the City-County Building.

His “pride” contrasts sadly with reports of a police initiated invasion of a gay bar in Ft. Worth, the significant number of closeted homosexuals (including many Western PA politicians – hello!) and continued gay-baiting from communities of faith intent on imposing their world view on the conduct of other people.

Still, we thrive. Ian mentions Dan Onorato's speech at PrideFest and yesterday an unknown number of local gays and allies flooded his office with calls about the Human Relations Act.  Openly gay individuals around the nation are coming out and running (and winning!) for elected office, including our own City Councilman Bruce Kraus.  The Independent (formerly Santorum supporting Republican) candidate for Mayor, Kevin Acklin, announced his support for marriage equality. So did Fred Honsberger. 

Outrage, the movie exposing hypocrisy in the gay community, did well enough for the Pgh Filmmakers to extend its run for another week or so.  NetRoots Nation, a conference with a huge amount of progressive attendees, comes rolling into town in August. 

Work continues on the Allegheny County Human Relations Act. The media is watching.  A statement on the most recent updates is expected early this afternoon.  Tomorrow night we could take a huge step forward. 

Keep the calls going, my friends.  Show your dedication to the fundamental American ideals.

  • A few days ago, in the New York village of Lily Dale, members of a Baptist church from Florida protested outiside of the gates of the little enclave, the home of three Spiritualist Churches, denouncing the inhabitants and visitors as “damned,” “witches” and “necromancers.”
    The Christian Right denies the Christianity of disssenters from their world view, denies the legitimacy of other religious viewpoints.
    The LGBT community needs to make common cause with those faiths and churches denounced by the Right.
    Conversely, we do not need laws with exceptions that enshrine homophobia as an “acceptable prejudice”
    Nor do we need State Senators that quote Dr Wilhelm Stutkart's statement about the “Nuremberg Laws” to justify denying us citizenship
    “We allow them to exist” can be found in Stutkart's statements during the “Wannsee Conference”

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