Friday, April 10, 2009

Please be on the lookout around campus

There are still several flyers being torn down around campus at a very high rate, and this activity is not just isolated to a few buildings, but rather it is campus wide. The latest flyer created is the "Peeps" flyer, which is a picture of two 'peeps', and it says "Some Peeps at ETSU are Gay Get Used to It!"

As you are around campus, please take time to look for these flyers. The flyer (.pdf) can be both viewed and downloaded to be reprinted by you at:
http://www.4shared.com/file/97779018/4effbd81/peepscolor.html

Each floor of each main building around campus should have at least one to three copies, mostly in black and white although the Culp Center's are in color.

Also, we are beginning the process of documenting grafitti, hateful messages, anti-gay messages, etc. If you see anything fitting this description, please send an email to lgbties@gmail.com with a description of the item, and also a picture (.jpg) if you are able to.

Thank you for your continued support of our organization at ETSU. This is our campus too!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A Christian Responds to the LGBTieS part 2

This is an update, the following was the response that I have received from my previous email which was my initial response:

"I have taken a look at the heretical document of what Mr. Mel White used as a defense for a supposed justified sin. Here is a question If anyone needs to justify their sin with the word of God and without Jesus then why do people justify their sin with the word of God? I mean where is the conviction that comes with it. I mean does anyone read the Bible for what it really is. A convicting tool for sinners instead of a comfortable play land of sin. Does anyone ever realize what they really are when it comes to sin? Does anyone realize they have a need for a savior instead of a need for sin? Does anyone realize when people use explanationism, excusism, avoidism, and any other isms as a relative means as well as logical reasonability to say if the words are not there that it is okay to do anything? How about Christ there may been clear indications of what he was to do but lets say he didn't see the words for what they really are. If that was the case for Him then would he glorify Himself or not? If Mr. Mel White needs logical reasonability and relativism and specified words to specifically talk about homosexuality then he is pretty much with the group of people in John 2:23-25.This is where Jesus did a miracle and afterward people was willing to believe in Him only because of the miracle and not Him personally. If you want to talk I am open to talk to you but you better believe as I sit and type this out I am going to share with you a story that you are familiar with but just don't know that well. I will continue to look at Mr. Mel's heretical docuement and I will even use the verses he used as well as others that will be used to tell the story. Until we meet [...] let me know where you want to meet and we can have a one on one conversation. I will say this I don't believe that homosexuals should be harmed as far as physical contact is concerned. I will say this though what I will be sharing with you you may find offensive. If you do find it offensive, or use it as a defense as a suggestion I would read Genesis 3:15 and Genesis 6:5. Why did I suggest that because whether or not you want to believe it we are all born in enimity. Which means those who have no conviction of their sin or regenerative heart according to Ezekiel 36:26-27 then people without God will hate God. Well here ya go. [...] By the way in case of no "suprise" I am a student at ETSU."

A Christian Responds to the LBGTieS

The following is an email that we received through our lgbties@gmail.com email address last week from someone who has seen our flyers around campus, perhaps a student although I am uncertain. I have included it here with the text unedited and with the bold lettering as it was received. My response is also enclosed below:

"Dear LGBT,

It is with kind regards to say hello. I could not help but notice a verse of scripture. I love how people can justify their means through precarious wording. I mean the Bible does state in Matthew 7:1 " Judge not unless thou be judged." But what about verses 2-5 which state the following in the NKJV, " 2 For with what judgement you judge, you will be judged and with the measure you use it will be measured back to you. 3 And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, ' Let me remove the speck from you eye'; and look, a plank is in your own eye? 5 Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye." I am not the least bit suprised for those that have a supposed justification for what they are. It hurts me that when people take the Bible for just a crumb here and there that those without a regenerative heart is not willing to take the full context for what it is. Verses 2-5 are indication for judgement and the crtiteria and responsiblity for people that do and will judge. Specifically Christians. Christians that have a heart of flesh and not a heart of stone surrounded by bones. The heart of stone I am referring to you can find in Ezekiel 36:26-27. You ladies and gentlemen try to justify your homosexuality with even explaining SIN away. It hurts me greatly to see this. If it did not hurt me I would have no reason or regenerate heart to even share with you your predicament and your situation. I want to share with you a story that you may or may not be familiar with. This story involves the entire human race as we know it in this story. "

My response was as follows:

"To Whom it May Concern,

I apologize for not responding to you sooner, as your original email happened to be routed into the spam box of the lgbties@gmail.com email address.

After reading and re-reading your email, I have been pondering exactly what I might have to say to you, especially in light of the religious nature of your message. It certainly appears that like me, you also have devoted a great deal of time to the study of the Christian Bible. I myself was raised in an Independent Baptist and Pentecostal protestant tradition, and I have spent most of my undergraduate years in religious study at two Christian colleges, Warner University in Florida and Piedmont Baptist College in North Carolina, as well as many years throughout my college career of working in ministry.

It is obvious that we both have found justifications for the beliefs that we each hold to be true, so really it would most likely be an exercise in futility for either of us to get into a debate over specific passages from the Bible and what their meanings are, because I have genuine doubts that my arguments would be persuasive to you regarding the Bible and what it does and does not say regarding gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered persons, or for that matter whether or not any of what is written in it is even relevant.

Our organization will be doing more in the semesters to come to address the issue of homosexuality and the Bible, and you are more than welcome to attend one of those events and to hear what we have to present on the matter. In the mean time, I would encourage you to visit http://www.soulforce.org/article/homosexuality-bible-gay-christian and read the article addressing the subject written by Rev. Mel White.

I would also be more than willing to meet with you in person sometime, perhaps over coffee to informally share with you my personal experience of growing up as a young gay man in Southwest Virginia and of my religious experiences growing up."

Friday, March 27, 2009

'Gay Bashing at a Sports Bar: What Would You Do?' aires tonight at 10pm est on ABC

If you have yet to see the excellent series on ABC entitled "What Would You Do?", tonight's will be one that you won't want to miss out on. One of the segments deals with a scenario of a staged gay-bashing in a sports bar in order to see how the other patrons react.

Much of the segment is available online for viewing earlier at the program's website:

http://abcnews.go.com/WhatWouldYouDo/story?id=7152579&page=1

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

I have just received some exciting news that I wanted to share with you. If you haven't yet had the opportunity to view this website, please check out http://drivingequality.com/.

This summer, Chris Mason will be embarqing on a 100 day, 16,000 mile road trip with one goal in mind: advancing LGBT equality. During his travels, he will be interviewing LGBT community organizers, activists and citizens in order to "gain an understanding of the current political climates" and to "explore ways of combating discrimination." "The project will culminate with a documentary of [his] experience with the aim of activating a discussion about potential strategies for ensuring equality."

Chris will also be taking steps to reduce the carbon footprint of this trip through various means, which could give us an added opportunity for organizing and/or participating in some sort of community service project to help him to achieve this as well as to help us to promote both the tour and our locally supportive LGBT community organizations.

According to Chris, he will (as of today) be in Johnson City, Tennessee for a stop on his Driving Equality tour on Tuesday May 19th. If you are interested in participating in this important and exciting project, please contact me ASAP at lgbties@gmail.com so that we can establish a committee of local activists and supporters to help plan this event and raise awareness about it.

If possible I would like to be able to schedule a formal planning/brainstorming session for sometime within the next two weeks, most likely an evening or weekend where several of us are available to do this.

Thank you for considering this opportunity to help to advance the cause of LGBT equality here in the Tri-Cities.

lgbties@gmail.com
http://lgbties.blogspot.com/
http://twitter.com/lgbties
also found on Facebook groups and on MySpace

Saturday, March 21, 2009

For Immediate Release:

As many of you know, our campaign to advertise our organization on campus at ETSU has drawn mixed reactions. While the overwhelming response from the lgbt community and our allies has been quite positive, there has also been a serious and targeted effort on the part of some persons affiliated with our campus to either remove our posters entirely from view, or in the case of the latest released flyers, to remove our logo and contact information from the bottom half of them.

About a week ago, a student reported to me that in the music department, someone had taken down our original "I kissed a girl" flyers and replaced them with one depicting a picture of a banana smiling with the slogan "I took down [your] flyers and I liked it." Then today, on the third floor of Rogers-Stout Hall, someone had taken the time to print out and post the following:

"Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. - 1 Corinthians 6.9-10"

I am urging all members and supporters of LGBTieS at ETSU to come out as you are able to the meeting next Wednesday so that we can collectively discuss these and other incidents around campus affecting the lgbtiq community at ETSU, and so we can begin to plan and coordinate an appropriate response to the increased negative reaction that we are receiving from some of our fellow students.

One reminder, for those of you who are concerned about safety and anonymity issues, "what happens at TieS, stays in TieS." We will not disclose without your explicit permission that you attended or participated in this or any other meeting we have, and we invite all of you, both students and guests, to come out and join us in helping to make our campus community a safer place for all students, but particularly for students who self identify as being lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, intersexed or questioning.

Our meeting next week will be held on Wednesday, March 25th at 7:15 pm here on the ETSU campus. For directions or for more information about the LGBTieS at ETSU, please contact us at lgbties@gmail.com.