Friday, June 24, 2016

Commentary on U.S. Catholic Bishops and "Religious Liberty" Crusade As "Fortnight for Freedom" Begins: "Fair to Say Religious Liberty Has a Damaged 'Brand' These Days"

This week, the U.S. Catholic bishops began their latest "Fortnight for Freedom" shindig, whose purpose is to drive Catholic voters to the polls to vote Republican (as they claim) to defend a "religious liberty" now under siege because gay people have the legal right to marry civilly, because the Obama administration is mandating contraceptive coverage in its Affordable Care Act, because denying rights, goods, and services to targeted others while claiming that one has a religious warrant to discriminate is increasingly distasteful to more and more Americans, etc. 

Droppings from the Catholic Birdcage: Online Discussions of LGBTQ Lives at Catholic Blog/News Sites Following Orlando — "A Pastoral Failure of Monumental Proportion"

Three instructive comments by Catholics discussing the Orlando massacre at Catholic news and blog sites:

NCR and Commonweal Make Editorial Statements About Orlando: "Wrong to Downplay or Ignore the Fact That Mateen's Victims Were Murdered for Being Gay"

Two leading U.S. Catholic journals have now published editorial statements about the Orlando massacre — National Catholic Reporter and Commonweal. I'm recommending both of them to you with the following excerpts, and making a note of particular gratitude to Commonweal, which I had initially criticized for its anemic response to this anti-LGBTQ act of mass murder.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

A Day in May: Testimonies of LGBTQ Irish People About Marriage Equality Vote — "I Believe God Did Work Through Us on That Day"

In two postings a month ago (here and here), I pointed you to a book by Irish journalist Charlie Bird — A Day in May (Newbridge: Merrion Press, 2016)— about how the marriage equality battle was won in Ireland. The book came out in June, and I've just finished reading and wanted to share some notes about it with you.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

On Being a Straight Ally in the Movement for LGBTQ Rights: Lessons I Learned in Fifteen Years at HBCUs

In the past week, as we discussed the Orlando atrocity and the response of faith communities to it, we had good discussion here of the role that straight allies play in the movement for LGBTQ rights. That discussion has had me thinking about the decade and a half I spent working in historically black universities — as a white ally in the struggle for rights and justice for people of color. To be specific: I've been thinking about lessons I learned in those years about being an ally in the struggle of another group of people for rights and justice.

Paul Harvey on Recent Southern Baptist Convention Meeting: Media Get It Wrong, Ignore Continuing SBC Commitment to Culture War re: Gender and Sexuality Issues

Paul Harvey reports at Religion Dispatches about how the media have spun the recent Southern Baptist Convention meeting to suggest that Southern Baptists turned some major corner in their wars with contemporary culture, when they passed a resolution condemning display of the Confederate flag. As he notes, the culture wars remain alive and well among Southern Baptists (and conservative white evangelicals in general, hence the continuing strong support of conservative white evangelicals for one Donald Trump).

Monday, June 20, 2016

Historical Footnote to Orlando Discussions: 19 June 2013, World's Largest "Ex-Gay" Organization Exodus International Announces It's Shutting Down

Jim Burroway reminds us that yesterday in 2013, the world's largest "ex-gay" organization, Exodus International, announced it was shutting down operation: as Jim states,