Justice Department to Stop Defending Federal Law on Gay Marriage

It’s about time. let’s keep the calls and e-mails going to congress too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

New York Times: February 23, 2011

WASHINGTON — President Obama, in a major legal policy shift, has directed the Justice Department to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act — the 1996 law that bars federal recognition of same-sex marriages — against lawsuits challenging it as unconstitutional.

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr.sent a letter to Congress on Wednesday saying that the Justice Department will now take the position in court that the act should be struck down as a violation of same-sex couples’ rights to equal protection under the law.

“The president and I have concluded that classifications based on sexual orientation warrant heightened scrutiny and that, as applied to same-sex couples legally married under state law,” a crucial provision of the act is unconstitutional, Mr. Holder wrote.

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NOT ANOTHER SUICIDE BECAUSE OF BULLYING

Bullying is learned and learned in the home, in the religious institutions, in the schools, and in the streets. It’s called “One-upMANship,” competition. I’m OK if I put you down. It’s the way Demo crazy (democracy) works. And worse, it is tolerated. It’s called: “Don’t you have a sense of humor?” It’s called: “Boys will be boys”…for a lifetime? Everyone can make fun of gays and lesbians since the “Bible Tells Us So.” I thought we were all made in God’s image.

And even if you aren’t lesbian or gay but fit the non-sensical stereotype (since we are everywhere and have many different “lifestyles”), you are still bullied. And if you are an LGBT youth and have been bullied but have not come out to your parents, how the hell are you supposed to go home and tell them you have just been bullied for being gay?

We call upon the LGBT communities across the US to begin to develop self-defense and self-esteem programs for our youth (boys and girls) so that if they are bullied, they can protect themselves. Make it on-going and affordable. Our motto is not only “It Gets Better,” but “NOT ANOTHER SUICIDE BECAUSE OF BULLYING.”

We owe it to those who CAME OUT before us and made changes, to those on the front lines today, to our youth, and to future generations to come.

Lovingly, Ruthie and Connie

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A great description of the documentary: Ruthie and Connie Every Room In the House

A Letter from a fan!

How does one measure a life? By the courage to take risks? By the insistence on loving?

By the urgency to work for social change? By the devotion to parents, children, friends?

By a faith in the spiritual? By any measure, both Ruthie and Connie, two extraordinary ordinary women are in full stride in such a life.

It is exhilarating to see two Jewish women in their mid-sixties, proud and out lesbians devoted mothers, and grandmothers, loyal friends, teachers without portfolio, because it would be filled to overflowing.

Ruthie and Connie engage in the on-going struggle for equal rights for the L/G/B/T Community, for women, for old people and for Jews. Their urgent passion for justice informs each moment of their lives with ribald humor, tenderness, patient listening and political outrage.

They are a team, indomitable and singular. They became national heroes when they (and two other couples} successfully sued the New York City Board of Education for spousal medical and dental benefits for all New York City employees. And they won!

The film is an intimate, personal story of their lives together and their ultimately successful struggles against convention and homophobia.

Producer, Donald Goldmachner, and a talented production team of women shaped this film. Twice nominated for an Academy Award, producer-director, Deborah Dickson, worked closely with cinematographer, Ferne Pearlstein and editor, Rachel Kittner in making the film. Lynda A. Hansen, marketing strategist and producer, is co-producer; Sandra Butler, author, is co-producer; Sharon Wood is conceptual consultant and grant writer;

Looking to change minds about Homosexuality? Order a DVD for yourself, friends, family, your school, church, synagogue, organization. And — invite Ruthie and Connie to a Q & A.

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Fear…Less

What I am about to share with you is a thought I take very seriously.  A thought that deserves my attention and yours and theirs.  I have learned, on a very personal level, not to live in the closet.  This closet that I have decided not to live in is overrun with shame, fear, guilt, embarrassment and is very crowded with people.  People of all shapes and sizes, all accents, all experiences, all colors, all frame of religious or non religious backgrounds, all levels of income and handouts and all opinions.  I live in a world of commercials, advertisements, newspapers, magazines, labels silk screened or otherwise, the Internet, Facebook and the like, texting, cell phones, all means of media available and public.

We publicize our products, we use methods of meeting life’s partner.  We share our thoughts about a movie, its effects and defects. We share our hopes and our dreams, the food we like or dislike, the music we move to and brings us to a peak experience.  Did I miss anything?  And yet when I share who you are, I am not sensitive, that this is personal, this is a process. When I share who I am, I’m flaunting. When I name me and identify myself I am told to look both ways. You and I would not hesitate to give away how we make a  living, we might get a new client, a new customer, a new patient, a new buyer, a new gig, a new opportunity.

My name is Connie and I am a lesbian in or out of a relationship.  I call this sharing.  I was married to a man for 18 years.  I have 2 adult children, 13 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren (and still going). I call this sharing.  I made my living as a bookkeeper, a counselor and a business woman, and today I am an artist.  I call this sharing.  All in all what boundaries have I crossed, what secrets have I revealed, what embarrassment did I create?  Come to think of it  NONE.  Your telling or my telling I am and you are should not be denied.  When we are discrete, when we lie, when we fabricate her to him, him to her, we think we are protecting ourselves. What we are really doing is protecting the attitudes, the hate and the behavior of violence.  Our sexuality is so private so personal, so denied. We have an unwritten law, don’t mention names.  We use the alphabet to avoid spelling out the identity of the organization, the institution. Yes you are right I have no way of knowing how people will react.  Rejection, loss of love, loss of job, loss of children, still very real and in spite  of and because of these possibilities there is no time like the present to be and to be proud …   to  be in Every Room In The House.

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To the Judges of Prop 8, and those against Equal Marriage for Gays/lesbians

This is a wonderful definition of marriage .We bought a card by Barbara Cage, because it sounded like we have fulfilled this  definition of marriage for 36 years. It’s high time marriage was made legal  for Lesbian and Gay partners. Entitling us to receive the Federal benefits. We have been covering all the responsibilities for 36 years.
“MARRIAGE IS…..

A commitment. Its success doesn’t depend on feelings, circumstances, or moods – but two people who are loyal to each other and the vows they took on their wedding day…

MARRIAGE IS…

Hard work. It means chores, disagreements, misunderstandings, and times when you might not like each other very much. When you work at it together, it can be the greatest blessing in the world.

A relationship where two people must listen, compromise, and respect. It’s a arrangement that requires a multitude of decisions to be made together. Listening , respecting, and compromising go a long way toward keeping and harmony.

A union in which two people learn from their mistakes, accept each others faults and willing adjust behaviors that need to be changed. It’s caring enough about each other to work through disappointing and hurtful times, and believing in the love that brought you together in the first place.

MARRIAGE IS…

Patience and forgiveness. It’s being open and honest, thoughtful and kind. Marriage means talking things out, making necessary changes, and forgiving each other. It is unconditional love at its most understanding and vulnerable– love that supports, comforts, and is determined to triumph over every challenge and adversity.

Marriage is a partnership of two unique people who bring out the very best in each other and who know that even though they are wonderful as individuals…they are even better together.”

Any and every Gay or lesbian recognizes the above as their responsibility in a marriage. Millions of us have been in committed relationships  waiting, pounding the door  for the Federal government’s marriage benefits. We are demanding the same rights as any couple making  the commitment of marriage. It’s time you stopped the hate that continues to keep us from our full civil rights.

God has nothing to do with it.

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Dear Mr. President:

You weren’t born then, or even a thought about…When Harry Truman was President he took his power of executive priviledge and on about 1948.. said,

and I paraphrase:”” We don’t have two separate armies in the United States”” , and the Black soldiers and the white soldiers were no longer segregated.

President Truman did not wait for the courts, the Congress, the attorney general, the army,navy or marine’s opinions  or even your defeated apponent McCain, he took the power of the President of the United States and made  a decision for justice ,liberty and the American Way.

Why are you not taking your Executive Power and the power as the Chief of the armed forces and doing the same?

You have promised to do the same for Don’t Ask don’t Tell and it seems that you can’t move on what is yours to do as Chief of the Armed forces and President of the United State. and include in the repeal that no Gay person ,because of his/her sexual orientation receives a dishonorable discharge or is harassed in service.

How come Gay service members have won medals for killing in service and discharged for loving.

We deserve an answer Mr. President.

Call the White House and leave a message about repealing DADT,  for President Obama: 202-456-1111

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There’s Hope After This Election

The results of Tuesday’s election presents us with interesting happenings. Here’s Freedom To Marry’s Evan Wolfson’s take. We hope it gives you a lift.

It’s up to us in the LGBT community and our allies to become pro-active. That means write, call, demonstrate when called upon. Make your personal the political. Some of us may not want to marry. However, we should have the right to choose.  The legal benefits marriage allows are staggering.  Among them, sheer economics. Marriage legitimizes committed love. No one can interfere and grab what is rightfully yours: your money, your property.  Not ever. Not during your lifetime together, not during potential illness, not with the inevitability of life’s end.

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A Very Sad Statistic

So much has been said about bullying and we could add to it. However, we want to share with you this very sad finding. While looking at the You tube clips of our film, I went to the clip about me, Ruthie, wanting to commit suicide as a “way out” of the fear, the shame, and the thought of everyone knowing — especially my children and family — that I was a lesbian.  I then accessed You Tube’s viewer demographics. Get this: THE AVERAGE VIEWERS WERE TEENAGE BOYS BETWEEN THE AGES OF 13 AND 17!!! A very sad statistic.

Any suggestions as to why this might be? They may have Googled suicide out of curiosity, need, questioning??? However, it appears to parallel with the news: bullying teens (both boys and girls) — and suicide.

The sites It GETS Better, The Trevor Project, and many more are resources for you. Hopefully, in watching RUTHIE AND CONNIE: EVERY ROOM IN THE HOUSE, you’ll understand that athough, I, Ruthie, thought of suicide as a way out, I didn’t  do “it.”

And — instead, I CAME OUT!  Coming Out transcended my survival. It gave me my FREEDOM!

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