Tag Archives: sexual orientation

We Won’t Be Erased

Alex Patchin McNeill, Executive Director of More Light Presbyterians, has written a powerful post responiding to “the ways in which the Trump Administration is working to ‘define transgender people out of existence.'”

Read the article. Read the whole article!

But here are some suggestions on how to support trans people and to make sure no one is erased.

 

  • If you’re looking for some more education to increase your confidence in engaging around trans inclusion, we recently released Connecting the Dots Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation as a two-part video series. It’s a great way to learn more so you can help push back against transgender erasure. Check it out here: https://mlp.org/connecting-the-dots-gender-identity-and-sexual-orientation/

  • Worship can be a great way to be sure people in your congregation know that God loves trans people just as they are. This weekend, consider naming trans and non-binary people in the prayers of the people, or in your sermon. You could even read part of the GA overture “Affirming and Celebrating the Full Dignity and Humanity of People of All Gender Identities” as part of worship:

    • Standing in the conviction that all people are created in the image of God and that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is good news for all people, the 223rd General Assembly affirms its commitment to the full welcome, acceptance, and inclusion of transgender people, people who identify as gender non-binary, and people of all gender identities within the full life of the church and the world. The Assembly affirms the full dignity and the full humanity of transgender people, their full inclusion in all human rights, and their giftedness for service. The Assembly affirms the church’s obligation to stand for the right of people of all gender identities to live free from discrimination, violence, and every form of injustice. Making these affirmations, the Assembly acknowledges that the church has fallen short of these commitments and obligations. In the world and in the Church, transgender people too often experience and suffer discrimination and violence.  The church has failed to understand fully and to celebrate adequately the full spectrum of gender embodied in God’s creation. As a result, we have participated in systemic and targeted discrimination against transgender people, and we have been complicit in violence against them. The Assembly affirms the scriptural obligation to work for justice for all God’s children, and particularly here to work for justice for people of all gender identities. We have fallen short of this obligation, and – by the grace of God – commit ourselves to do better.
  • Support transgender led organizations working hard to preserve and promote trans lives. Most transgender led organizations run on a shoestring budget, whether you support them with your dollars or even sharing about them with people in your life, a little goes a long way.

    • More Light Presbyterians: Yes! We are a trans-led and run organization working to center the voices of those often silenced in churches.
    • Trans LifeLine, fighting the epidemic of trans suicide and improve overall life-outcomes of trans people by facilitating justice-oriented, collective community aid
    • Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement founded at the beginning of 2014 by trans and queer immigrants, undocumented and allies, youth leaders and parents which organizes, educates, and advocates for the issues most important to our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) and Latino communities
    • Sylvia Rivera Law Project: SLRP works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine their gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination, or violence. SRLP is a collective organization founded on the understanding that gender self-determination is inextricably intertwined with racial, social and economic justice.
  • Immerse yourself in positive representations of trans and non-binary folks to explore the big, beautiful world of trans-created art.

    • Them: I’m currently getting inspiration daily from this incredible Instagram account and trans-led media/news company

    • We Are Transilient: A traveling photo and interview project featuring the daily lives of trans folks

    • To Survive on This Shore: a photo and interview project of transgender and gender non-conforming older adults. It’s a beautiful project you can experience online or as a hardcover book!

 

We are all God’s precious children. God delights in us as we are. Nothing can separate any of us from the love of God.

See you along the Trail.

Leave a comment

Filed under Current Events, Family, Friends, Human Rights, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

Thank you, Brittney Griner

Check out a related post on Jason Collins.

As with pro basketball, I do not follow college basketball on my own. I pay enough attention so I can  hold conversations with my wife who rather avidly and faithfully follows both the women’s and men’s teams from a university in Durham, North Carolina. The result is that I do know who Brittney Griner is – although I could not run down the details of her amazing career.

Earlier this evening, I posted about Jason Collins coming out of the closet.

I am grateful to my friends Margaret Aymer Oget and Shaya Gregory Poku for reminding me that Brittney Griner left the closet on April 17.  In doing so, they helped me realize that I should have posted about her actions as well.

The words I wrote about Jason Collins apply to Brittney Griner as well:

But as of today – and that today should have been April 17, Brittney Griner is one of my heroes. 

I give thanks for the witness and courage and faith and grace of Brittney Griner. I pray that her actions will make life better, safer, fuller, more human, and more humane for the people I know and love and for all the LGBTQ members of the human family.

A number of questions need discussion as we ponder the different reactions to the same act of coming out by Brittney Griner and Jason Collins. For starters:

  • What role does sexism play?
  • What role does patriarchy play?
  • Are female athletes stereotyped as lesbians?
  • Do female athletes who come out fuel male fantasies while male athletes who come out fuel male fears?
  • Does a greater level of tolerance related to sexual orientation exist in the WNBA and women’s sports than in men’s sports? If so, why is that and what role does it play?

No doubt we need to address other questions – many other questions. For now, those make a good beginning.

And for me, one part of the answer lies in thanking Margaret Aymer Oget and Shaya Gregory Poku for raising these questions for me, no matter how poorly I have addressed them at the moment. And another part lies in saying:

Thank you, Brittney Griner.

See you along the Trail.

3 Comments

Filed under Current Events, Sports

Jean-Claude Roger Mbede – Cameroon

Letter two in Amnesty International’s Write for Rights Global Write-a-thon was written and sent today. Today’s letter went to the President of Cameroon on behalf of Jean-Claude Roger Mbede.

Amnesty International reports that Mr. Mbede is serving three years in prison on charges of homosexuality based on his perceived sexual orientation. My letter asks for his immediate and unconditional release. It further calls the President of Cameroon to ensure the safety of Mr. Mbede in prison. Finally it urges the President of Cameroon to work for the repeal of the section of the country’s Penal Code under which Mr. Mbede has been imprisoned.

Sign up to participate in the Write-a-thon.

Find resources for the Write-a-thon, including sample letters to adapt.

Learn about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the international human rights framework.

See you along the Trail.

4 Comments

Filed under Human Rights