Gender Neutral Pronouns: They’re Here, Get Used To Them

Description:
http://tomscott.com – @tomscott – Grammatical gender is a silly concept. So I’m about to go against my vow of descriptivism, and risk being run over by the Linguistic Mafia’s bus, and say this: it’s a silly idea.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Stephen Fry – Humanist Answers To Four Questions

How Do We Know What is True?

How Can I Be Happy?

What Makes Something Right Or Wrong?

What Should We Think About Death?

This is a series by the British Humanist Association that poses four questions commonly asked of Humanists. Narrating the answers is the great Stephen Fry, (I should be clear that great is my opinion of Stephen who would be too modest to describe himself in such lofty terms). I hope this will give you some insight into why the philosophy of Humanism is so appealing to people like me.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

WATCH: Travis Wall Brings Same-Sex Couples to ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ | Advocate.com

This was a potential watershed moment on So z You Think You Think You Can Dance. This beautifully choreographed and danced segment shows that same sex couples have every right to complete and power and beauty are not confined to dances between opposite genders.

For me the piece is particularly powerful as the music was featured at funerals of friends lost to AIDS. It symbolized for me the strength, love and commitment shared by lovers, friends, caregivers and other members of the wonderful family of choice that banded together to support those living and yes, dying, from that dreadful disease. Here’s the story by Lucas Grindley writing for the Advocate

The piece is believed to be the first featuring same-sex partner dancing on the Fox dance competition.

image

Out choreographer Travis Wall is getting praise for bringing the first same-sex partner dance to So You Think You Can Dance this week.

Wall teased the choreography on Twitter before it aired, promising “This piece is so special to my heart.” And after the live show, praise poured in from activists and even Jason Collins, the NBA’s first out player, whocalled it “an amazing opening” to Wednesday’s show.

Wall, wearing a “Create Love, Destroy Hate” T-shirt, thanked the four dancers who performed.

Watch the video below:

See more here at the Advocate

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gay Georgia teen, who has received over $90k in donations, explains how video came to be | Gay Star News

This is a follow up to the video and story that went viral last week of a family appearing to reject him after he came out. It now appears that this was actually an “intervention” staged by his religion obsessed family. This makes it all the worse because this rejection was a planned event and not just a hasty reaction to news that the teen was gay. Here’s the story from SYLVIA TAN at Gay Star News..

Teen says he had come out last year, and he did not ambush his parents and then record their reactions

image

Photo: Screen capture of video by 11Alive NBC


Earlier this week, Daniel Ashley Pierce, from Kennesaw, Georgia posted a candid video of himself having an argument with his family members and being beaten by his stepmother. In it, she can be heard saying that she ‘cannot condone’ his homosexuality.

‘I believe in the word of God and God creates nobody that way. It’s the path that you have chosen to choose,’ she said.

He responds saying he believes that ‘scientific proof trumps the word of God.’

She then told him, ‘You will need to move out and find whenever you can to live.’

The 5-minute  video, which was posted by a friend on YouTube, has since attracted over 4 million views.  His GoFundMe page was set up by his boyfriend and has raised over US$90,000 in just days to help the college student with his living expenses.

He says he has had no contact with his parents since that moment caught on video.

He wrote on the page, ‘I was basically beaten and thrown from my home of 19 years. They took everything including my college text books. I intend to use this money to get the basic things I need such as a bed, text books, medical stuff and transportation.’

He has also pledged to give a ‘certain precentage’ to ‘help kids that are in the same situation as me including including Atlanta-based ‘Lost and Found Youth.’

In an interview broadcast by Atlanta’s 11Alive NBC station on Saturday, he revealed that he had actually came out in October last year and that the video footage was of his father, grandparents, step-mother and her sister staging a ‘pray the gay away’ intervention on his behalf.

He believed at the time that his stepmother was supportive when he came out.

‘I thought for myself, for my own protection if something were to happen it would be best to have it on video. I just hit record. I just hit camera and hit record. I just know that I did it for my protection and it kind of all went from there, and the video really speaks for itself.’

‘What I hope people take away from watching that is it still happens. A lot of people don’t realize that it happens. They see all the positive videos and the negative video never gets seen so if one family maybe watches it and maybe changes their mind in how they are going to handle it about their son or daughter coming out, one family and I will be happy. I want to education people on the issue because it is something going on,’ Pierce said.

Pierce says the video was not posted for people to attack his parents, and hopes that his family will come to see what they have lost.

‘I wouldn’t want it to happen to me. I wouldn’t want it to happen to them. They are still my family and they are in my heart but what happened in that video is very hurtful.’

- See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/gay-georgia-teen-who-has-received-over-90k-donations-explains-how-video-came-be310814

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Zozobra – Burning of Old Man Gloom

image From: somewhereinnewmexico:

Old Man Gloom, Santa Fe, NM

One of Santa Fe’s hottest traditions… This happened Friday Night: Santa Fe’s annual ritual of burning up all the troubles of the past year along with “Old Man Gloom” aka Zozobra. This year they used an old 1920s era design of this messenger of gloom. Hipsters note this predates “Burning Man.”

Description of event from an old postcard:

The Burning of Zozobra. Santa Fe, New Mexico.“Since 1924, the burning of Zozobra has marked the beginning of Fiesta de Santa Fe. The ritual of burning “Old Man Gloom” begins at dusk. Zozobra’s ruin symbolizes the end of worry, sorrow and woe for the year past, and releases the spectators to begin their main objective: merriment.”

KOAT video of event:

From Wikipedia:

Zozobra (“Old Man Gloom”) is a giant marionette effigy that is built and burned every autumn during Fiestas de Santa Fe in Santa Fe, New Mexico. As his name suggests, he embodies gloom; by burning him, people destroy the worries and troubles of the previous year in the flames.[1] Anyone with an excess of gloom is encouraged to write down the nature of his or her gloom on a slip of paper and leave it in the “gloom box” found in the offices of the Santa Fe Reporterin the weeks leading up to the burn. Many people put legal papers in the gloom box as well. At the festival the papers from the gloom box are placed at Zozobra’s feet to be burned alongside him.

Fiestas de Santa Fe has been held since 1712 to celebrate the Spanish retaking of the city in 1692 by Don Diego de Vargas from the Pueblo tribes who had occupied the city since the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. The burning of Zozobra dates from 1924. Santa Fe artist and marionette maker Gustave Baumann came up with the idea of creating the effigy,[2] also called Old Man Gloom, and the ritual burning; and then conspired with his friend William Howard Shuster, Jr. to burn the first Zozobra. Zozobra means “anxiety” in Spanish. Baumann’s idea might have been influenced by Mexican cartonería (papier-mâchésculpture), especially the effigies exploded during the burning of Judas that takes place on Holy Saturday or New Year’s Eve, as a way of ridding oneself or one’s community of evil.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Top 10 Rock Songs of All Time

I rarely agree with lists like this but I think they got this about right. I might have subbed Smells Like Teen Spirit in for one of the songs or just made it top 15 but this is about as close as any list has come to my opinion. I remember jamming with a friend to the #1 song. I’m still not sure how I got away with it at a Christian school. Maybe they just heard the word heaven and thought I was singing gospel. Yes, I also like more stereotypically queer genres but I do love rock!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Trans refugee finds happiness in New Zealand | Gay Star News

This story highlights the trouble transgender immigration and asylum seekers have when trying to immigrate or seek asylum. It turns out that many countries, some you would classify as very liberal, require sexual reassignment surgery before acknowledging a person’s preferred gender. This needs to change, and hopefully it will, but until then it’s good to know that there is a country like New Zealand around that knows gender is between your ears not between your legs. Here’s the story from LIAM JOHNSON at Gay Star News

A transgender refugee who tried and failed to gain asylum in several countries, has described New Zealand as a ‘paradise’ where her gender identity is accepted

image

Image via Facebook


A transgender woman has spoken about her happiness at finally being allowed to live in a country where her female identity is accepted.

Eliana Rubashkyn, 26, from Bogota, Colombia, was granted asylum in New Zealand, where her certificate of identification has her gender stated as ‘female’.

She has described New Zealand as a ‘paradise’.

Rubashkyn has spoken about the ordeals suffered as a refugee seeking entry into countries such as France, Norway and Finland. She was consistently rejected because of regulations on gender reassignment surgery.

‘I have been through hell, and I am so appreciative and happy that I can start my life anew here in New Zealand as a woman,’ she said, as reported by the New Zealand Herald.

Immigration New Zealand said the former Master’s degree student was referred to them from United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

‘Prior to the immigration decisions, Ms Rubashkyn had made inquiries, through UNHCR, whether her gender of preference could be issued in her travel documents,’ said Marc Piercey, an immigration spokesperson.

‘At the time of processing her application, she had not decided whether she would or would not undergo sex change surgery.

‘During consultations with the Department of Internal Affairs, it was established that the documents could be issued in the applicant’s preferred sex/gender.’

The issue of surgery had been one of the reasons why Rubashkyn had been denied asylum in other countries.

‘I am afraid of surgery and I feel the gender is a cultural and social construction and it’s not a biological thing,’ she said.

‘Whether I have surgery or not should not be the business of governments, it is my own business.’

Earlier this year, Rubashkyn described her experience in Hong Kong as ‘hell.’ She travelled to Hong Kong in order to update her passport photograph as she was planning to study at Taipei Medical University.

However, she was refused entry at a Hong Kong airport and was detained, forcing her to find another country to seek asylum in.

In her blog, Rubashkyn describes herself as ‘a Colombian transgender refugee living a new start in New Zealand.

- See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/trans-refugee-finds-happiness-new-zealand300814

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment