Showing posts from October, 2010

Freedom of press, speech, and religion

Juan Williams was fired from NPR this week because of comments he made on Fox News, where he’s a regular commentator.  His comments included the statement that he gets nervous when he’s on a plane with people who identify first and foremost as Muslim, as evident from garb.

I realized I have a particular perspective on this that might be different, and so is worth sharing. And I expect it is probably an unpopular opinion, as well. 

In this country we have a lot of freedoms, among them freedom of the press, freedom of religion, and freedom of speech.  Sometimes these freedoms come into conflict.  And sometimes we voluntarily choose roles that curtail these freedoms.  We’re free to not choose those roles and retain the full exercise of our freedoms, and usually we know in taking up these mantles that we are thereby giving up certain freedoms.

As a minister, I’m caught up by the freedom of religion that also requires churches, as non-profit agencies, to keep the government …

One More

Like a lot of other UUs, I got the message about "Spirit Day" and wore purple yesterday, and pink, too, since that was the color being used in my community.  Hopefully the national show of spirit helped someone, somewhere.  But we know it's not enough.  That point is made eloquently by Melissa Pope of Oakland University who said:
While the national press has picked up this issue over the last two months, we have been losing high numbers of LGBT youth to suicide for decades. In recent years, we’ve labeled the cause as bullying. But the root cause goes deeper – it goes to the very core of our society that discriminates against the LGBT community on all levels, including the denial of basic human rights that are supposed to belong to every person.This response from Pope comes following the news of the suicide of a young Oakland University student, Corey Jackson.

Meanwhile, I'm searching for answers after the death of this one young man that has hit close to home.…

It Gets Better/Coming Out Day 2010/Everything Possible

Tomorrow is National Coming Out Day, a holiday started over twenty years ago to mark a celebration for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth and adults who were coming out of the closet and sharing the fact that they’re gay. This year, the weeks leading up to Coming Out Day have been horrendous and sad as we’ve heard news after news of young gay people committing suicide because of despair in the aftermath of bullying or the accumulation of messages of hate they’ve received in their short lifetimes. Tyler Clementi, Seth Walsh, Asher Brown, Billy Lucas, Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase, Zach Harrington, and others before them and probably some other recent ones as well—a string of deaths of young boys who thought they had nothing left to live for.

It should go without sayingthat we do think their lives are meaningful and important, and cherished, and that whatever God there is or isn’t is a God of love. We think that people are born gay, and it’s not a sin, but a natural differe…