'Left Out' protesters throw counterparty outside HRC gala

Solomese hosts another million dollar baby inspite of the queer

When Joe So speaks the lemmings listen

The bruises suffered by a LESBIAN woman at the hands of HRC GOONS at the S.F. Black Tie. DO YOU SUPPORT THIS?
Cross posted from Boycott HRC Blog click title for original post

Some from Joe Solmonese (HEad Dick of HRC) speech at S.F. black tie;

"Has it been without sharp disagreements about how best to move forward?" referring to the entire San Francisco GLBT community protesting, "No, as evidenced by the people protesting outside tonight."

FYI solmonese "those people" you are dismissing as "those" IS US THE QUEERS!

He went on to say;

"In any struggle for civil rights in this country, there have been occasions when different groups of people have marched down different roads. What is important to our ultimate success is that each of those roads ends at the same place"

You know this fool is really pissing me off. We QUEERS REJECT you solmonese. Yo are a charlatain and have lied and mislead us for long enough.

We have asked YOU solmonese, we have PLEADED with you Solmonese and now we are TELLING you Solmonese WE REJECT YOU AND YOUR HOMOPHOBIC AGENDA.


Unitarian Universalist

To locate a Unitarian Universalist Fellowship click the title

The sanctuary of the Denton Texas Unitarian Universalist Fellowship was filled and the voices sad but proud. We sat and listened as person after person recalled the wonderful life experiences that they had with the victims of the shootings at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church.
The one sentiment expressed by all was that if the perpetrator had just once came to learn who we are, just once asked with a open mind, he would know he is loved. His hate would melted like ice and love over fill his cup.

Denton Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

Our Principles

Guiding Principles and Sources

We covenant to affirm and promote:

The inherent worth and dignity of every person;

Justice, equity, and compassion in human relations;

Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;

A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;

The right of Conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and society at large;

The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;

and Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

The living tradition we share and the tapestry of sources upon which we draw for our communal and personal religious life emerges from:

Direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of the spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life.

Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love;

Wisdom from the world's religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life;

Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God's love by loving our neighbors as ourselves;

Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit.

Spiritual teachings of Earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.

Grateful for the religious pluralism which enriches and ennobles our faith, we are inspired to deepen our understanding and expand our vision. As free congregations we enter into this covenant, promising to one another our mutual trust and support.


Mission statement of the Denton Unitarian Universalist Fellowship

We, the members and friends of the Denton Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, join to declare the following purposes:

To affirm the principles and purposes of the Unitarian Universalist Association;

To create a loving fellowship, caring for each other across generations and through joys, sorrows, and concerns;

To inspire and nurture personal growth for all ages in their search for meaning and a loving, joyful life;

To be an open community, practicing tolerance and respect for diversity;

To encourage ethical action in both individuals and the Fellowship as a whole, by supporting responsible beliefs and values, and by fostering commitment and courage, in service to our larger communities;

To grow creatively toward greater truth and beauty, while respecting the value of tradition;

To deepen our love of the earth and our understanding of interdependence.


Protesters Among the Gay Tuxedoed Crowd

Cross posted from BeyondChron click title for original post
by Tommi Avicolli Mecca‚ Jul. 28‚ 2008

This is one for the history books,” said Robert Haaland, a longtime San Francisco transgender activist. He couldn’t be more on the money. A coalition of groups, including Pride at Work, And Castro 4 All, and the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club, called a boycott and managed to get not only local politicians, but also the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) dinner’s keynote speaker to cancel at the last moment. In the end, HRC, the national gay group that last Fall dropped transgenders from coverage in the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), learned the power of the queer and transgender communities in San Francisco.

Queer issues take a global stage at the United Nations

By Emily Geminder

29 July 2008 [MEDIAGLOBAL]: Of the more than 3,000 non-governmental organizations holding consultative status to the United Nations, only a handful address gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and intersex issues. This week saw an incremental but significant step towards change: two groups, COC Netherlands and the State Federation of Lesbians, Gays, Transsexuals and Bisexuals of Spain (FELGTB), gained admittance to the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
The impact of United Nations policy bears far-reaching implications for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex individuals everywhere, and the community’s marginalization within the international framework has come under increasing scrutiny. According to South Africa based Gender Dynamix, Africa’s first transgender rights organization, discrimination against individuals who do not conform to conventional gender expression places them at high risk for HIV infection, compounding the impotence of national and global policies that fail to take sexual and gender minorities into account.

Peace One Day

Peace One Day - A Short Video Explaining Peace One Day.

Jeremy Gilley is an actor turned film maker, who in the late 1990's became preoccupied with questions about the fundamental nature of humanity and the issue of peace. He decided to explore these through the medium of film, and specifically, to create a documentary following his campaign to establish a day of ceasefire and non-violence.

In 1999, Jeremy founded Peace One Day, a non-profit organisation, and in 2001 Peace One Day's efforts were rewarded when the United Nations unanimously adopted the first-ever day of global ceasefire and non-violence on 21 September annually - Peace Day.

In 2007 according to the UN, over 100 million people were active on Peace Day, in 192 countries. There were life-saving initiatives in 14 countries, and over 80 activities in Afghanistan alone where 1.4 million children were vaccinated against polio.


Make your commitment now click title for


Protest ROCKS Human Rights Campaign Nationwide

Documented HRC protests since the 2007 ENDA catastrophe.

Chicago 2007
D.C. 2007
Austin 2008
Atlanta May 2008
Chicago 2008
Philadelphia 2008
San Francisco 2008
Houston 2008
New Orleans 2008
New York City 2008

There will be a public show of outrage at the Dallas Black Tie 2008

Austin TX 2008

Transgender Advocates of Central Texas participated in the recent Human Rights Campaign Austin Black Tie Dinner by staffing a table at the event intended to give attendees the opportunity to learn about and discuss gender expression issues, according to TACT officials.

Austin Texas is the first protest I Kelli Busey participated in against HRC. Prior to that I volunteered at HRC events.

Windy City Times

Last week there was a wide range of events calling attention to transgender issues, from a protest held at an HRC-Chicago event, to a vigil for victims of anti-trans violence, to a rousing trans celebration, and a forum following the screening of the film The Gendercator at the Reeling festival. Images here, of the vigil Sunday night, are by Kat Fitzgerald. Protesting outside the HRC Chicago event, and the HRC panel inside. Photos by Amy Wooten
Activists from all across the US descended on the HRC fundraising dinner in Washington DC on Saturday, October 6 2007. They were protesting the HRC decision NOT to oppose a newly introduced version of the "Employment Non-Discrimination Act" (ENDA) that was stripped of the language which would have protected transgender people.



A Human Rights Campaign gala Saturday in Washington, D.C., didn't turn out quite as planned as transgender activists rallied outside and trans guests turned their backs in protest of HRC's evident behavior toward a trans-inclusive rights bill in Congress.
Between 50 and 75 transgender activists and their supporters protested outside of the Washington, D.C., convention center on Sat., Oct. 6,—the site of the Human Rights Campaign’s ( HRC’s ) annual dinner—in response to the HRC’s strategy on the inclusion of transgender rights in the recent ENDA ( Employment Non-Discrimination Act ) legislation currently being considered in Congress.


Phyllabuster: HRC goes petty: directs security to escort educators out

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) just got more petty and immature in responding to protests of its actions last fall that clearly divided a once united GLBT community.

As we arrived at the site for the Houston protest of the HRC fundraiser this Saturday, April 12th afternoon (reposts below for those new to this saga), we were told by hotel security that HRC had changed its mind about our attempts to educate.

We would be allowed to enter (without signs or banners, which we had never planned to bring inside). If we went directly to the event located on the second floor, we could hand out our lapel stickers that read, "GLBT & ENDA: United, Not Divided: I Support FULL Transgender Inclusion." And we could engage in conversation and educate those people who wanted to listen and learn.

So we walked around, outside the hotel for over an hour, carrying signs and visiting with each other. It was very festive.

L. A. Observed
Mayor backs out of gay rights event
Kevin Roderick

I received an email statement from Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa this morning that announced he would skip tonight's banquet in San Francisco for the Human Rights Campaign, a mainstream gay community group that raises and donates a lot of money for gay-friendly candidates. Villaraigosa was supposed to be the keynote speaker, but cited a boycott of the event by the San Francisco Labor Council. That seemed kind of curious. Now an AP story has moved reporting "intense lobbying from transgender activists angry over the group's stand on a federal gay rights bill." The labor council had planned to picket, and future candidate Villaraigosa tries to avoid crossing picket lines. Here's the mayor's statement:
The Human Rights Campaign is on the frontlines of the fight for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights and I fully support its important mission at this critical moment in history.
It has come to my attention that the San Francisco Labor Council has voted to formally boycott HRC's annual fundraising gala and regretfully, I cannot attend this years event.
As Mayor of the largest city in California, I am committed to creating a world in which no member or group in society is denied full and equal rights. It is my hope that this time next year will find us all united by victory in the fight against Proposition 8 and ever more determined to establish equal rights, with no exceptions, for every one of us.
Here's also a release making the rounds of gay media that claims Villaraigosa was successfully pressured.




On July 26 at the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco, there will be a party and protest in front of the HRC Gala.

HRC has a long record of endorsing war-mongers and republicans like Joe Lieberman, weak and shameful support of transgender, genderqueer/gender variant communities, and focusing their attention and money on the needs and desires of the most well-off members of the LGBT community.

As queer activists it is our responsibility to let the donors to HRC know just what they are giving to. They are contributing to an organization that endorses pro-life, and anti-war candidates. And an organization that does not fully support the trans community.

There are thousands of good hearted contributors to HRC who simply need to be made aware.

Join us on July 26, to demonstrate in front of the Westin St. Francis, San Francisco."
Marraige Equality Blog
The self proclaimed largest gay rights organization in the United States continues to draw fire from LGBT people around the nation.
Andrew Sullivan, one of the most respected and most read gay bloggers slammed them in his post: HRC Busted.
Log Cabin Republicans issued a statement denouncing the HRC's YouTube video of John McCain.
Organizers of Atlanta pride refused money from the HRC.
Forget about political maneuvers and electoral games; ignore the platitudes and moralisms of extremists. Leaving members of our community behind isn't acceptable, and that's what most people remain upset about.

What else can go wrong for them? Plenty! This is hot off the press:

As gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people prepare to celebrate gay pride in San Francisco this weekend, many of them also are organizing a boycott and protest of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC).

Activists plan to be on the streets during the festivities to inform people of the boycott and protest of the Human Rights Campaign's annual fundraising dinner in San Francisco next month, a major event that raises tens of thousands of dollars for the organization.

Similar actions took place at fundraising dinners in Philadelphia and New York City earlier this year.

The controversy stems from the Human Rights Campaign's decision last fall to support a bill in Congress that would bar employers from firing a person because of his or her sexual orientation. The bill, which passed the House but has stalled in the Senate, did not include the same protections for transgender people. More than 370 gay rights organizations condemned the bill for that reason.

On Tuesday, San Francisco Supervisors Tom Ammiano and Bevan Dufty introduced a resolution at City Hall calling for a bill that includes transgender people and recognizing the boycott.

"The Human Rights Campaign should not be human rights cowards," Ammiano said at a news conference at the San Francisco Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Community Center. He said the organization seems uneasy with transgender issues.

Dufty said he will skip the fundraising dinner for the first time in 23 years and instead will make dinner at his home for people protesting outside the event.

The city's two LGBT Democratic clubs support the boycott, as does the San Francisco Labor Council. Assemblyman Mark Leno and state Sen. Carole Migden, both of San Francisco, also are not attending the event.Matt Foreman, who was executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force when the congressional vote took place, called the actions of the Human Rights Campaign "a monumental betrayal."

Foreman said it raises questions about the effectiveness of the organization, which raised $28 million last year.

"What is going on here is an emperor-has-no-clothes moment," said Foreman, who said he will be outside protesting but is "pained" to be doing so. "We still don't have one single federal law that protects gay people, let alone transgender people."

Theresa Sparks, who is president of the San Francisco Police Commission and is transgender, said she returned an award she received from the Human Rights Campaign.

Sparks, who attended the news conference with Dufty and Ammiano, noted the contributions of transgender people to the LGBT movement. The 1969 Stonewall riots in New York that sparked the modern LGBT rights movement were promulgated by transgender people, she said.

She dismissed the political argument that the nondiscrimination bill was more likely to pass Congress if it didn't mention transgender people.

"To me, this is less about strategy and more about integrity," Sparks said.
Queer Today
Bay Area Reporter
Queers Without Borders
What do the fat cat publicity hounds and fund raisers of the HRC have in common with Bill O'Reilly and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad? They all got nominated to recieve a Pink Brick by the Bay Area Reporter. And, they’ve all added notes to the steady drumbeat of hatred and bigotry.
Trevor A gay mans blog
Sadly, I'll be out of town. But that shouldn't stop you from heading down to the Westin St Francis and joining my friend Mark Snyder @ QueerToday.com:
My Husband Betty
OPINION On July 26, the Bay Area's gay and lesbian elite will gather at the posh Westin St. Francis to raise money for the Human Rights Campaign in the name of securing and protecting LGB rights.
Queer Today
Channel 5 CBS TV
Left Out coverage


San Fransico Bay Guardian

Outside the HRC dinner
HRC's failed strategy on ENDA has needlessly divided our community at a time when we are poised to make great gains in civil rights
Wednesday July 23, 2008


Boston Edge

San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera has confirmed that he will boycott the Human Rights Campaign’s gala dinner scheduled for July 26.





Vigil to be held for LGBT Rights and to protest the actions of the Human Rights Campaign at the HRC Annual Dinner.
Where: Outside the Lowes Hotel on the corner of Market & 12th Streets in Philadelphia.
When: Saturday February 9, 2008 at 5:30 pm.
We will be holding a vigil outside of the dinner to focus attention on the exclusion of transgender Americans from the federal Employment Nondiscrimination Act and on the Human Rights Campaigns’ reversal of policy in agreeing to accept a bill that does not cover the entire LGBT community. The HRC not only worked towards this exclusion of the transgender members of the LGBT community from this bill, they misrepresented their intentions in this matter to Philadelphia’s LGBT leadership and to the transgender community on this extremely important issue.
Transgender people are the most vulnerable group in the LGBT community. Transgender people experience employment discrimination at rates that are orders of magnitude higher than the general population. In Philadelphia – over 60% of transgender woman are unemployed as are over 30% of transgender men (Kenagy 2005 – in Health and Social Work). The human and social costs resulting from such levels of discrimination negatively effect the entire community. The Baltimore Homeless Census released this September reported that 7% of homeless children identified as transgender. These children are often forced to leave their homes after their gender identity becomes known. The Southern Poverty Law Centers Special Report on Transgender Hate Murders “Disposable People” notes: “While the FBI reported a total of 11 U.S. murders motivated by racial, religious, or sexual-orientation bias in 2002, the Intelligence Report has documented 14 murders of transgendered people in the U.S. in that one year.”
Our common goal is passage of a fair and inclusive employment nondiscrimination statute. Any version of this law that fails to securely protect the LGBT community against workplace discrimination is a law not worth having and we urge you to oppose it. Several elected officials are being asked to help educate HRC on transgender issues and the need for legislation that covers the entire community.
We ask you join us at 5:15pm to show your support for equality for the entire LGBT community. Please consider wearing the attached sticker to the vigil and to the HRC Dinner if you will be attending. It can be printed on a standard Avery name badge (Publisher file for printing labels and JPEG for printing on standard paper) – or just printed and pinned to your clothing. They will also be available at the vigil.
Kathy Padilla
Co-President, OutFront!

Stephen A. Glassman, Chairman
Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission
Michael Hinson
Michael P. Williams, Esq.
Co-President, OutFront!
Stacy L. Sobel, Executive Director
Equality Advocates Pennsylvania
Rue Landau, Co-Chair
Liberty City Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Democratic Club
Ray Murphy, Co-Chair
Liberty City Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Democratic Club

Hudson Valley Gay News
Faced with a boisterous picket line that drew a crowd of more than 50 and with the absence of every lesbian, gay, and bisexual elected official from New York City -- indeed, every other prominent city Democrat as well


Boy In Bushwick

Roskoff added he and others plan to ask members of New York’s Congressional delegation to withdraw their support of the current version of the bill.

"HRC has taken away the fight and drive for equality by compromising our goals and selling the community short," he said


Pams House Blend
Why do Trans people hate HRC
Monica Roberts
In 1995 Elizabeth Birch took over as Executive Director of HRC at a time when there was an epidemic of gays and lesbians cutting transpeople out of civil rights legislation.

In many cases gay people who sat on various HRC boards either nationally or regionally led the efforts. In 1999 Dianne Hardy-Garcia, who was the executive director of the Lesbian Gay Rights Lobby (now Equality Texas) at the time and an HRC board member, led the successful effort to cut transpeople out of the James Byrd Hate Crime Bill (to mine and TGAIN"s vehement opposition). That bill was eventually killed in the GOP-controlled Texas Senate but passed in 2001 as a GLB only bill and was signed into law by Gov. Rick Perry.

Elizabeth Birch for a while eclipsed Janice Raymond as Transgender Public Enemy Number One when she was quoted at a Chicago GLBT event as stating that transinclusion in ENDA (the Employment and Non Discrimination Act) a top legislative priority of transgender leaders would happen ‘over her dead body’.


Citizen Crain

Pink Brick
The Human Rights Campiagn is taking hits on both coasts for its decision to support Barney Frank's gay-only version of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. In both cases, the extremism of the critics only reinforces how removed these intolerant ideological purists are from the real lives of lesbian and gay Americans.


Wahington Blade

HRC spokes idiot Luna contends that HRC is working for full inclussion


wrote a letter to HRC telling them to get stuffed and they sent me a reply telling me that they were fully behind the trans community... rubbish.

Boston Edge

Roberts Provides A Brief History of the Trans / HRC Schism
by Kilian Melloy
EDGE Contributor
Tuesday Oct 9, 2007


Boy In Bushwick

Roskoff added he and others plan to ask members of New York’s Congressional delegation to withdraw their support of the current version of the bill.

"HRC has taken away the fight and drive for equality by compromising our goals and selling the community short," he said



We have a big problem here


Bolycott HRC

In a fine show of solidarity, several gay and lesbian members of the Chicago Gay Liberation Network joined our small but sincere cadre outside of the hotel where this lavish affair was about to commence


AZ Transgender Alliance shares their feelings about HRC's stance on ENDA and failure to join the rest of the LGBT community in standing united for an inclusive ENDA (version 2015)


Bolycott HRC

In a fine show of solidarity, several gay and lesbian members of the Chicago Gay Liberation Network joined our small but sincere cadre outside of the hotel where this lavish affair was about to commence


AZ Transgender Alliance shares their feelings about HRC's stance on ENDA and failure to join the rest of the LGBT community in standing united for an inclusive ENDA (version 2015)


"Security" goons oust older lesbian from HRC dinner

Cross posted from Happening Here Blog
pleaseclick title for link

Shooting At Unitarian Universalism Church

Please click title
Cross posted from NGblog

Church services were disrupted today at a gay-affirming church in Knoxville when a lone gunman opened fire in a sanctuary of Christians.


On Saturday, July 26, the Human Rights Campaign held a stuffy dinner auction and fundraiser at the Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco. In a show of solidarity with trans folks, the local LGBT community threw a "Left Out Street Party" for everyone who got left out of the HRC's Employment Non-Discrimination Act.


Lawrence King I will remember you

There is a strong movement which is being supported by our most staunch advocates and allies to lessen the punnishment that Brandon McInerney, the killer of Lawrence King may receive.

IN memory of all hate crimes I offer my life experience,

I opened my eyes not knowing where I was, where I lived, or even my name. All I knew was absolute terror and my nearly dead body’s unrelenting scream of agony.

For hate crime survivors the world becomes a place where you hold all your life experiences in comparison to being beat to death.

A rose, a sunrise, a friends hug.

That’s what it is like to "survive" hate crime.

I pray that Lawrence’s experience was not as horrific. I pray as he transitioned to life with our creator, he found love and peace.

Brandon McInerney is among us on this planet, sharing our lives's in my opinion Brandon should willingly ask for the maximum penalty to dissuade others from parroting his life.
This action would set into motion for Brandon a process that will allow him to forgive himself and eventually find freedom that no prison bars can contain.


Teen's killing a hate crime, Police Searching For Her Car

El asesinato de 18 años Angie Zapata - who' el nombre del nacimiento de s era Justin Angie y vivido pues una mujer - era probablemente un crimen de odio, dijo a un portavoz para la familia de Zapata. La policía cree que el sospechoso ha robado Zapata' coche de s, un crucero oscuro 2003 de Chrysler pinta del verde de bosque con el número de matrícula de Colorado 441-ORN.
Hay un hubcap que falta en el neumático delantero del pasajero-lado, y hay pintura que falta en el tope delantero en el driver' lado de s, debajo de la linterna. Cualquier persona con la información sobre el coche se pide llamar la policía de Greeley en 970-350-9600. Angie' la vida de s snuffed hacia fuera en un acto violento del odio. Ella sufrió heridas múltiples a su cara y cabeza. Detenga por favor a nuestra hermana en usted corazón y ofrézcala en rezo y la meditación. La encontraron asesinada por su hermana en su apartamento. Angie' la familia de s está pidiendo que nuestra comunidad ayudara a encontrar a los autores de este crimen atroz. Las donaciones en el honor de Angie Zapata hecho quizá en el banco de la academia en Wal-Mart, el carril de 60 W. Bromley o los cheques hechos pagaderos a Mónica Murquia se pueden enviar al programa de la Anti-Violencia de Colorado, caja de P.O. 181085, Denver, CO 80218.

The murder of 18-year-old Angie Zapata — who's birth name was Justin Angie and lived as a woman — was probably a hate crime, said a spokesperson for the Zapata family.

Police believe the suspect has stolen Zapata's car, a dark forest green 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser with Colorado license plate number 441-ORN. There is a hubcap missing on the front passenger-side tire, and there is paint missing on the front bumper on the driver's side, under the headlight.

Anyone with information about the car is asked to call Greeley police at 970-350-9600.
Angie's life was snuffed out in a violent act of hate. She suffered multiple wounds to her face and head. Please hold our sister in you heart and offer her in prayer and meditation.
She was found murdered by her sister in her apartment. Angie's family is asking our community to help find the perpetrators of this heinous crime.

Donations in Angie Zapata’s honor maybe made at Academy Bank in Wal-Mart, 60 W. Bromley Lane or checks made payable to Monica Murquia may be mailed to Colorado Anti-Violence Program, P.O. Box 181085, Denver, CO 80218.

July 31, 2008

Transgender victim referred to as "it"

Cross posted from the Denver Times

Article Launched: 07/31/2008 12:30:00 AM MDT

Angie Zapata's murder may be prosecuted as a hate crime, prosecutors say. Related Articles
Jul 30:
Date arrested in Greeley transgender murderJul 24:
Kin believe transgender teen's killing a hate crimeJul 25:
Transgender teen's murder possibly a hate crimeGREELEY — Allen Ray Andrade never referred to his alleged victim as a she or he. Just "it."

That alone speaks to the brutality of the crime committed against 21-year-old Angie Zapata, said a group that has been speaking for Zapata's family.

"You get the sense that maybe he wasn't seeing Angie as a person," said Crystal Middlestadt, director of Training and Education for the Colorado Anti-Violence Program. "Then you get an idea of the violence behind this act."

Zapata, a transgender woman, was born a male named Justin Zapata. Police allege that an enraged Andrade beat Zapata with his fists and a fire extinguisher after he discovered Zapata — who had performed a sex act on him the day before — was physically a man, Greeley police said Wednesday.

Andrade told a Greeley police detective that he thought he "killed it," referring to his alleged victim, a police affidavit said.

Andrade, 31, was arrested in Thornton early Wednesday and faces a charge of second-degree murder and aggravated motor-vehicle theft in connection with Zapata's death.

Weld County District Attorney Ken Buck said Wednesday that a review of the case will determine whether Zapata's death will be treated as a hate crime. Regardless, the case against Andrade will be pursued aggressively, Buck said.

"It doesn't matter who the victim is," Buck said, ". . . a crime like this cannot be tolerated at any level."

Zapata's family is relieved that an arrest was made, said Kelly Costello, family spokesman and director of victim services for the Colorado Anti-Violence Program.

"There is a whole range of emotions they are dealing with," Costello said.

Zapata's body was found July 17 in her Greeley apartment by her sister. The discovery of her stolen car led to Andrade, police said.

Andrade told detectives that he met Zapata on the Mocospace website and that they were in regular contact before the slaying. Zapata drove Andrade to her apartment July 15 and later that day, Zapata performed oral sex on him, the affidavit said.

"However, victim Zapata did not allow him to touch Zapata sexually or otherwise," the affidavit said. They slept in different rooms that night.

The following day, Zapata left the apartment and Andrade stayed there by himself. Andrade saw photographs in her apartment and began to question their encounter, police said.

That night, Andrade confronted Zapata about whether she was male or female. Andrade told police that Zapata responded, "I am all woman."

Andrade then grabbed Zapata's genital area. Angered, Andrade struck Zapata with his fists, police said.

She fell to the ground, and Andrade grabbed a fire extinguisher in the apartment and hit her twice in the head. He covered Zapata with a blanket and began cleaning up the apartment. After he noticed Zapata sitting up, he hit her again with the fire extinguisher, police said.

Andrade gathered Zapata's purse, keys, cellphone, the fire extinguisher and his personal belongings and fled in Zapata's 2003 Chrysler PT cruiser.

A early-morning noise complaint from the Thornton neighborhood where Andrade lived led officers to find him sitting in Zapata's car on Wednesday.

Monte Whaley: 720-929-0907 or mwhaley@denverpost.com


Protest at Crews Inn Dallas a show of UNITY

July 24th 2008 was another of a dozen 100+ Texas scorchers turned frigid 90 deg. evening. The dozen protesters gathered together to support the two "drag queens" David Moore, co-owner of the Crews Inn, described as offending his clubs ultra high moral standards were flabbergasted to meet Celeste(R) and Sierra(L) the "offending" transgender woman.
I had attended this protest as because I wanted to support a part of our culture and stand up for "Drag Queens", well honey I struggle by with only 1/4 of the charms of these gals!

This show of support quickly became a matter of passion as we began to know our lady friends and listen to the sincerity in there voices.

The shouts from our community turned many around as they walked towards the Crews Inn entrance. We became more emboldened as our community waved and happily walked over to ZIPPERS where owner John Miles welcomes everyone, even on Trashy Tuesday!

We have decided to return to our little stonewall on Tuesday until such a time as the offending words are amended and reconciliation begun. As Michael Doughman Director of the Dallas Tavern Guild noted, "I have never known David(Moore) to be prejudiced toward any group of people, so I can't imagine that it is just because they are guys in drag."

Daniel Williams, operations Director of the Dallas Peace Center composed his signs from his heart and they best represent the "back story".
Among our group of protesters were Straight allies, Lesbians, Gay men, Transgender and MANY members of HRC. These HRC members did not come to grandstand or steal the spotlight. I did not even known they were HRC members until I asked them.
This is Indeed is a community solid in commitment, willing and able to sacrifice for the common good.

By Kelli Busey
July 24,2008


A Jihad for Love

In Western media, the concept of 'jihad' is often narrowly equated with holy war. But Jihad also has a deeper meaning, its literal Arabic being 'struggle' or 'to strive in the path of God'.

In this film we meet several characters engaged in their personal Jihad's for love. The people in this film have a lot to teach us about love. Their pursuit of love has brought them into conflicts with their countries, families, and even themselves. Such is the quandary of being both homosexual and Muslim, a combination so taboo that very little about it has been documented.

In a time when Islam is under tremendous attack from within and without, "A Jihad for Love" is a daring documentary filmed in twelve countries and nine languages. Muslim gay filmmaker Parvez Sharma has gone where the silence is loudest, filming with great risk in nations where government permission to make this film was not an option


Petition Asking Bishop Robinson Not to Attend Dallas Black Tie.

WE, a coalition of gender diverse people who identify as Transgender or Intersex people (including people who are also known as transgender, transsexual, intersex, and several other terms used to classify people based on being born with a condition where the gender of their mind, psyche, or soul differs from their anatomical sex at birth, or, their anatomical sex at birth was ambiguous) hereby ask that you do not lend religious credence to HRC's discriminatory and violence enabling agenda by attending or accepting the Elizabeth Birch award at the Dallas Black Tie 2008.

Petition asking that The Right Reverend Gene Robinson, Bishop of the Diocese of New Hampshire, not attend the Black Tie Dinner Dallas Texas on November 22, 2008.
It is he belief of the signers that the discriminatory policies of the main benefactor of the Dallas Black Tie, the HRC, propagates violence against all of Womankind, Intersexed and gender diverse to include but not inclusive of, Transgender Men, effeminate gay men, masculine presenting Woman, Natal Woman and Transgender Woman.

It has been documented that gender discrimination has placed the United States among the leaders of gender bigotry world wide. Sexual Violence is enabled by a conception of the perpetrator that the consequences of rape and murder committed against the gender diverse is minimal or non existent.

This perceived vulnerability in the United States recently was reinforce by HRC's inexplicable and morally reprehensible betrayal as the self proclaimed advocate of the of the gender diverse during the ENDA debacle of 2007.

HRC's position, which has not been amended constitutes a daily reinforcement of this horrific policy.

It begs a question in these days of failing church attendance and disconnect, what can people of faith do to help?

By your not attending you will signal loudly to HRC that policies which are beneficial solely because of monetary gains and political expediency at the expense of the most vulnerable, are not acceptable.

By your not attending you will elevate the Anglicans standing in the eyes of the GLBT community and the entire world.

By your not attending you will contribute to the fight against violence transmitted
AIDS/HIV and other STD.

By not attending the self esteem of the gender diverse will rise and the need to validate threw risky sex will decrease.

By you not attending, those who have been cast aside by their faith will be given a ray of hope.

By not attending you will signal lawmakers to take courage and follow their moral consciousness to enact laws to protect the entire Lesbian, Gay, Intersexed, Bisexual, Asexual and Transgender community.

By your not attending the Dallas Black Tie the world's diverse community will recognize your commitment and sigh in relief and bask in the glow of an affirmative, welcoming and loving Anglican Church.

Bishop Robinson, The weight of social progress now rests on your shoulders.




Do you know...........................................................................................................................?......................................

Queers United: Open Forum: Queer-Positive Role Models

Queers United: Open Forum: Queer-Positive Role Models

Queers United asks you, "Is there anyone in your life that is Queer-positive that has been a good role model for you?".


Gay bar bans drag queens on ‘Trashy Tuesday’

David Moore, co-owner of the Crews Inn, claims he can legally keep transgender people out of his gay bar on Fitzhugh Avenue in Dallas if their appearances don’t match their photo IDs.


However a GLB and T friendly bar down the street doesn't seem to have had this problem according to manager John Miles "I have not noticed any difference in the behavior of drag queens from our other customers," he said. "They behave themselves very well and do not cause problems. They will always be welcomed at Zippers."

A demonstration of solidarity from the community is planned for the 26th of July in front of Crews Inn at 10:00pm. Stonewall anyone?

I will be there. I love our Super Drag Queens!!

To read Dallas Voice article click title.


LGBT Activists March, Pull off Masks in India

Cross posted from Reproductive Health RT Reality check
Click title for original post.

Deepali Gaur Singh on July 17, 2008 writes..

"This day was chosen by representatives of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall riots of 1969 in New York, sparking the gay rights movement nationwide. In possibly the largest display of gay pride of its kind in India, LGBT activists chanted for their rights, to end discrimination and push for acceptance in a society where intolerance is widespread and where homosexual acts are illegal"

More click title....
Kelli Busey comments on July 17, 2008...

Because I am a vocal opponent of discrimination I would like to point out in India, as in America, transgender people play a lead role in bringing to acceptance the homosexual experience.

There has been in America a effort to exclude transgender people from legal protections by the leading gay and lesbian advocacy group, Human Rights Campaign, (HRC). The entire GLBT community formed UNITED ENDA to educate HRC, but sadly HRC has not changed it's discriminatory policies. Policies that are harmful to all womankind.

read more click title......



Tommi Avicolli-Mecca explores the fallout of the Human Rights Campaign’s (HRC) inexplicable unanticipated and morally reprehensible actions as it acted in collusion with Congressman Barney Frank to remove gender expression as a protection under the doomed House Resolution 2015 (HR)2015 while simultaneously claiming to be supportive of a gender inclusive ENDA (HR)2015.


"Queers United" The real McCoy

Yes my friends I have posted a positive article about HRC (see below HRC ROCKS TO WIN post) and here is why;

To Queers United,

This is a tribute to your vision!
This is a tribute to your passion!
Thank you for finding ways to click!
This is a tribute to your love for the whole GLBTAIQ !

Your selfless friendship and support of my RADICAL transagenda has at times brought you controversy, sometimes a shitstorm even.
I'm here to say.
IF YA NEED ANYTHING YOU JUST CALL ON ME!!! We will together as all queer folks must, weather all storms, survive any attack and do it in style, together. As one family.
QUEERS UNITED. You are the Real McCoy!!


Please visit our allies at Queers United by clicking the title!!!

Human Rights Campaign\'s \"Rock to Win\"

Human Rights Campaign's "Rock to Win"

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Boston Herald "TRANNIE" is what a 16 year old calls a gear shift. Not a HUMAN.

Letter To The Editor And Staff Writers, Boston Herald

Kevin Convey
Editor in Chief
Boston Herald
(617) 619-6403

Joe Dwinell
City Executive Co-Editor
(617) 619-6177

Jessica Van Sack
City Reporter
(617) 619-6437

Sunday July 13, 2008
Letter To The Editor And Staff Writers, Boston Herald

I find the Article written by Jessica Van Sack, "Undercover 'John' takes on trannies, pimps" July 7, 2008 to be offensive and demeaning to the Transgender Minority it grievously denigrates by continuously calling transgender people "trannies".

This term at very best was used on Jerry Springer shows as a sensationalistic slur and at it's worst as the last thing a terrified transgender victim hears before our life's are ended in horrific acts of violence.

I have faced that violence Ms. Sack. I have been left for dead by a person who felt enabled by attitudes expressed like yours from the media, religious and government figures.

I am reminding Ms. Sack that while she may beleave herself to be personally immune from the fallout of this article, genetic Woman suffer as a consequence of denigrating transgender woman because they are seen as equally venerable as a transgender woman.

Ms. Sack. Lets take this to a new level of awareness.

This perceived vulnerability applies to you mother, sisters and close friends as they walk down a Boston street today.

I demand that the writer of this article issue a public apology for the intentionally insulting language contained in this article.

I demand that the Boston Herald offer a public retraction of this story.

I demand that Jessica Van Sack be removed from her position with the Boston Herald in the event she refuses to comply with the above demands.

Kelli Busey
Transgender Advocate

cc; Paul Karr, Director of Media Field Strategy, GLAAD,
Gunner Scott, Director, MTPC



A open letter to Bishop V. Gene Robinson

Open Letter to The Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson
Bishop of New Hampshire

HRC's billion dollar baby has begun to stir.

As I was leaving my LGBT youth group I made a mention of a up coming protest of the HRC Celebration of gold in November 2008 at Dallas Texas to a paid staffer at YouthFirst.
I up to this moment had viewed this paid staff member as a somewhat distant person friendly enough, but in as a non committal offhanded sort of way.
I had attributed this to her being a very busy woman and I had admired her dedication to the LGBT youth.
But this void had made my commitment to continue volunteerism a matter of personal dedication because of a seemingly lack of concern by the leadership of this group. I had up to this point accepted this as my personal sacrifice so that I may satisfy my need to be of good to the community I Love so much.

Her first response before realizing the gravity of the situation was to say " Just make sure you are not wearing your YouthFirst Hat while you are protesting." Becuse I am a writer of the goodness and potentials of our LGBT youth.

I had seen the response by the staff to the youth if they even suggested that they were gender variant. Always concentrated looks of disbelief with grins, followed with a comment like " ya right." This results in the youth looking down in embarrassment and shame. I have come to the point where I openly defend their right to gender expression and am quickly put down and ignored by the staff.

Judith stood suddenly between me and the door and asked, sudden concern clouding her eyes "what protest?" I began to tell Judith about the protests I had participated in since being denied by HRC. Her worry began to deepen as she asked what it was I thought might happen at Dallas in November.

I replied Bishop Robinson was scheduled to accept the ELIZABETH BIRCH EQUALITY AWARD at the dinner. I was asking my faith community to stand up for us and for Bishop Robinson to deny this award on solidarity with transgender people who have been unjustly and unfairly removed from being a part of ENDA in spite of the unanimous outcry of 350 LGBT groups that HRC decided to ignore and caused untold sorrow and pain. We are a community on the verge of self destruction because of HRC.

Judith first response knowing that I wrote for the RMN blog, a Methodist affirming outreach group was to say" Oh but the Methodist church in Dallas gets money from this." THIS response made me physically ill. Judith was attempting to use my faith against me, as a club to beat me down with. I responded" I attend this church as a guest not because it is a recipient for HRC funds, which I was previously unaware of , but because of my experience at the Methodist Conference that summer I had fallen in love with the Methodist faith. I will talk to this church about this I said, but my love for them is about trying to help in their struggle to become free to worship, free to Minister and free to marry as I am in AGAPE MCC."

Judith was now HORRIFIED. I asked her why she had turned so pale she told me "I am on the Black Tie Marketing committee." Oh I said. I am so sorry things have come to this point and told her I was interviewed by The Dallas Voice, a local LGBT paper, and had answered the question of protest at the Dallas black tie. We at that time were committed to finding a way to Educate and form a solid coalition and not wanting to detract or degenerate the Dallas Black Tie. WE LOVE OUR COMMUNITY and only want to do good. So we asked the Black Tie Committe if we could hold a Educational Initiative at this Black Tie but were once again denied.I told Judith that we are not asking Bishop Robinson to refuse this award out of spite, but becuse HRC has forced us into a corner and left us no options.

Now Judith's BILLION DOLLAR BABY was in mortal danger. She was horrified by the pureness of my heart, the intent of my soul, in fact my love for our community and Christ. She was protecting a gold jewel encrusted inanimate object which has no soul, no consciousness, no hopes and dreams. It does not have faith.

To Judith, protecting this baby which HRC has been holding in front of it's Dallas Black Tie to shield it self against dissent, was not unlike a mother who relized her child was now in danger of being pried from her loving hands.

Never once did the matter of my faith in the episcopal church ever become a matter of concern for this HRC fund raiser. Never did my struggle to remain employed EVER become a matter of her concern. Never has the DEATH of Lawrence KING ever become connected with the struggle of the gender variant, or become important to Judith. UNTILL NOW when her BILLION DOLLAR BABY became endangered.

Judith and HRC are worried and horrified not because they care about Christianity. Not because they are worried about Trans peoples faith, health or well being. Not because of any concern for gender expressive children like Lawrence King.

They are Praying to their GOLD GOD. The Billion Dollar BABY. Baby HRC.

I am asking you Bishop Robinson not to attend the 2008 Dallas Black Tie. I am asking you to put into practice the inspiring sermon you gave at All Saints Church that brought me out of the shadows, out of fear into a strength and belief that GOD and CHRIST love me and spoke through you.
You see, I forsake my Episcopalian church which I grew up in for 20 years because of a man, who while representing this church had done me such grievous harm.

Because of your sermon at All Saints opened my heart again, to beleave again.

I am asking you to reject HRC. To be the protector of the Gender diverse yet unborn, alive and dead. HRC has thrown transgender people away. Sacrificed For pieces of gold.

Kelli Anne Busey
Gender Advocate
Believer in Christ the redeemer

Petrelis Files

Petrelis Files


Episcopal Priest Beaten While Protecting Homeless Transgender Youth revisited

Queens Residents Speak Out Against Violence On Transgender Youth
NYC Transgender Shelter Says Director Attacked
Father Braxton in a telephone interview shortly after this incident, told me that his site was unable to accept donations because of a technical problem. I promised Reverend Braxton I would return and try to help. Here we are.
Please make a Donation to Carmens Place

NEW YORK (AP) -- A priest who runs a shelter specializing in outreach to homeless transgender youths was beaten with construction equipment and paint cans by a group of teenagers in a possible hate crime, authorities said Tuesday.

Two 17-year-olds and a 16-year-old were awaiting arraignment Tuesday on charges of assault and criminal possession of a weapon, Queens prosecutors said. A 15-year-old was being charged as a juvenile in the Monday attack outside the Carmen's Place shelter, prosecutors said.

The four boys gathered in front of Carmen's Place around 10 p.m. and started harassing and taunting the residents with homophobic slurs and insults, people at the shelter said. The director, the Rev. Louis Braxton Jr., tried to intervene but was attacked with paint cans, a woodworking tool and other objects found along the street, they said.

Braxton, 52, was treated at a hospital for cuts and bruises. A shelter resident also was injured in the attack, which occurred on one of the main thoroughfares in the Astoria neighborhood.

Braxton spoke about the attack on Tuesday.

``Unfortunately, violent attacks against transgender youth is not unusual,'' he said. ``What made this incident so disturbing is that it occurred on a congested and busy New York City street.''

The incident was being investigated by the police Hate Crimes Task Force, and charges could be upgraded if it's found a hate crime took place.

Carmen's Place first was established by a missionary named Carmen Solis in the basement of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, where Braxton was pastor. The shelter provides beds and food for youths who have been kicked out of their homes or turned to prostitution.

When the parish closed in 2007 because of financial trouble, Braxton rented a nearby two-bedroom apartment for the shelter, which currently houses about a dozen transgender youths.

The nonprofit runs on a shoestring budget and relies on donations.

Shelter spokesman Reggie Johnson said residents there often are harassed and the attack on Braxton is the latest in a string. He said the shelter is working with community leaders and the local police precinct to help make the area safer for residents.

From Kelli~ I am contiuing to add articles as I find them to the original post to keep a thread intact~

July 08, 2008
NY1 News

Four teenaged boys were arrested for attacking the director and several residents of a transgender center in Astoria Tuesday. NY1’s Ruschell Boone filed the following report.

Father Louis Braxton, Jr., who leads the transgender center "Carmen's Place" in Astoria, Queens, says he was trying to defend a group of transgender teens who were being assaulted Monday night when four teenaged boys attacked him with belts and paint cans.

“I was standing right here looking that way and they kind hit me from behind,” said Braxton, who says the incident happened in front of the shelter where he and the transgender teens live. “I have a couple of knots on my head right now and a fat lip.”

Braxton said the boys struck him after yelling anti-gay slurs at the transgender teens, who were horsing around outside the shelter.

Carmen's Place has been a safe haven for transgender and gay youth for about three years.

“When they said what they said, I was shocked,” said victim Alessandra Carver. “I was like, ‘You feel good about what you're saying?’ and then that's when he was like, ‘Why you talking?’ So he went there and took a trash can and hit me with the thing upside with one of them.”

Police say four teenagers were arrested for their role in the attack -- 17-year-old Tyreek Childs, 16-year-old Travaughn Payne, 17-year-old Shara Mozie and a minor whose name has not been released.

The teens have been charged with assault and criminal possession of a weapon. Police say they are still trying to determine whether or not they will be charged with a hate crime.

In the meantime, Braxton and the transgender teens say the attack left them feeling unsafe at their shelter, and they are now looking for a new location.

- Ruschell Boone

Queens Residents Speak Out Against Violence On Transgender Youth

July 10,2008
Unknown Author

Some angry community members spoke out against violence in Astoria Thursday in response to an assault on a neighborhood priest and transgender youth earlier this week.

Father Louis Braxton, Jr. was attacked by four teenagers Monday night outside Carmen's Place, a homeless shelter for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth.

Police say the boys were assaulting a transgender teen in front of the Steinway Street shelter when Braxton stepped in to help.

"Unfortunately, violent attacks against transgender youth are not unusual,” said Braxton. “The thing that really upsets me is this happened here in such a nice neighborhood and such a nice community.”

“Transgender youth must walk down the street with their eyes over their shoulder because they never know what's gonna come their way,” said Daniel Dromm, co-founder of Generation Q Youth Services Program. “This type of violence is deplorable."

The attackers were arraigned Tuesday on weapons and harassment charges and are due back in court on August 13.


Kelli Busey

Bishop V. Gene Robinson's Passionate Appeal for Advocacy

This appeal for justice to commit to what we know is right and to willingly accept the consequences of standing up to powerful forces of evil was the inspiration I needed when I decided to include my faith in gender advocacy.


Somewhere over the Rainbow

In our world of LGBT rainbows we are blessed with a wonderful variety of colors, like Skittles showering our lives.
I was at a baseball game with my youth group enjoying one of these beautiful crazy happy, sad moments. "How are you?" I asked as the young man sat down beside me. I had noticed him before in passing he was a quite somewhat reserved youth. I always saw him in the company some of our most energetic and popular members so I assumed he was just, you know, O.K.
"Fine" he replied as one of the full time staffers, Judith, introduced us I looked at this person and wondered aloud "who are you?"
"Jesus" he said, "My name is Jesus". I smiled my curiosity piqued "That's my favorite name" I announced.
Jesus, as it turns out is a lanky suntanned young man. His long black hair curling gracefully down his back. He looked thoughtfully at me for a momment and offered,
"I live near here, not far at all". We sat in silence in la sol hermosa del sudoeste watching our team at bat. "Are you in school?" I inquired "Yes" he said proudly and added, "We have so great a diversity, we call it the Skittles Factory".
"I love that concept" I remarked and then asked "So Jesus what are you doing this summer?". He started to reply but Judith proudly piped in "Jesus is going to fly for the first time to attend an Advocacy training program, he was selected out of a list of 500 hundred aplicants to attend." I had been previously eves dropping and now I understand the reason for the laundry list Judith and Jesus had been working on. "Oh that's wonderful." I replied. "I beleave our greatest reward is to have our youth return to us, as they become adults to be the next generation of advocates."

Judith said, "I would love to find someone to write about Jesus." Beaming at the chance to write "I will Judith." I said "Since becoming a volunteer here I have wanted to find a way to contribute."
Jesus looked wistfully and lamented, "I have lived here since I was one year old but but my family has not received any citizenship papers yet."
So here we are. I am sitting next to Jesus, a caring and generous defender of the vulnerable, striving against all odds to become a highly skilled advocate and return to his community. Only one small glitch. If Jesus were to publicly announce himself, he would jeopardise not only his, but also his entire families safety and security in the only country he has ever known and loved. Kind of like a Superman predicament or maybe a Jesus you and I think about a lot.
I could not help but admire Jesus and began to wonder what can I do. And then it occurred to me. We are one in the same, Jesus, you and I. We maintain Anonymity as a thin Vail in the Methodist faith to protect our lives we share with our loved ones, with our church and community against the virtual deportation, excommunication and possible endangering of our mortal love we have for Jesus Christ.
To lose this connection is in many ways a spiritual death penalty for trying to commune with humanity, to help others as Jesus does. I then saw on a bright cloudless day ¡estamos en alguna parte sobre el arco iris!





San Francisco Califonia
The city by the bay has once again lead by example and is the consciousness and eyes of the American GLBT people in rejecting Joe Solmonese and HRC's unrepentant gender exclusionary policy.

If you would like to sign a petition to join this effort please click the post title.

Among the speakers was Donna Rose who said she joined HRC because she believes in Equality, Integrity and Principle. She then said she later left HRC for the same beliefs.
We in Dallas look forward to seeing Donna at the Dallas Black Tie and to hear her again express these outstanding Ideals.
In 2007 the Dallas Black Tie resulted in a $1.27 million net distribution, the largest distribution of any gay and lesbian fundraising dinner in the nation. A high percentage of the proceeds are allocated to local recipients but HRC does receive a very nice share.

It is understood by those of us who strenuously object to HRC's gender exclusionary policy that this opportunity to educate and inform the Greater Gay and Lesbian community cannot be missed.

I contacted Randy Ray, HRC member and CO-Chair of the 2008 Black Tie in a effort to conduct a Educational Initiative as we did in November of this year at the Austin Black Tie. Once again transgender people were turned down. Once again reasons were given as to why it was more important to raise millions of dollars for HRC than to build a working consensus for a gender inclusive ENDA. ENDA will save lives immedatly. It will give Transsexual sex workers a opportunity to compete for the positions they once held. It will give street transgender people a way out from under the bridges and hiding. It will help to curtail the suicides by Transgender people who are so ashamed of their condition and that they are helpless to change that KILLING themselves seems to be the only way to end the pain.

But once again we find ourselves being denied as we were in Houston and New Orleans and all across this nation at HRC events. When you drive up you will see me. Standing on the streets. Being harassed by police and security. Standing up for justice. Stand up for Trans rights.


US Military Don't ask Don't Gay

By Kelli Busey
July 02, 2008

A CBS special titled "Military Soft On Don't Ask, Don't Tell? 60 Minutes: Is Military More Tolerant Of Gay Members In Wartime?"

I am sure that the title of this series could easily lead people to beleave it's content would pander to the homophobic agenda. Instead it presents a human insight to the conundrum facing many of us who served. How can I serve my county faithfully as a LGBT person? To openly admit your sexual affinity to your commanding officer could set into motion a series of events that even the most loyal of officers can not stop. General Court Martial Article 15 of the United States Military Code. I know this code like a old friend, it can be used as a gentle nudge to remind a slightly errant soldier of minor infractions or as a trial by a General Officer where the people stand accused and convicted by a single person, only waiting sentencing.

As a non commissioned officer I was ordered to witness this mock justice performed on my section Sergeant.
What was once a brave and wonderful man was stripped of his dignity and reduced to a crying and pitiful shadow. I could not help but beleave that this show was performed in part for my benefit so I could pass what I had seen on to my fellow soldiers.

Instead what happened almost cost me my stripes, and freedom but I kept my self respect and the respect of my fellow solders to include the very people who where being forced to perform this mockery of justice.
My Sergeant and I served in units who's isolated mountain top operations requires it to be far from any official brigs. Our jobs required high levels of security and technical training, not a highly desirable position mainly filled by people like us. So in this capacity I was ordered to insure that my Sergeant remained in a barracks lock down under armed guard.
Since it was a weekend and I didn't want to burden my troops with this despicable extra duty I remained to stand watch.
My Sergeant and I had discussed our positions. He fully understood that I would honor my oath of allegiance and use all means at my disposal to prevent him from escaping. We also talked about the mock justice we were a part of. I cried when my friend cried. I felt the loss of belief in god and country as my sergeant did. So when he asked me if his girlfriend could spend the weekend with him before he went to Leavenworth I made sure they were not disturbed. When he asked me if he could have beer I sent my runner to fetch it.

My Sergeant was still drunk and laid silly come the Monday morning he was scheduled for movement. Now it was my turn to "stand on the carpet" and "see the old man".

I did not fear this because my Commander was a good man, and I felt the indiscretion was a fair treatment for a unfairly condemned man. I also took great pride in this blatant act of defiance.
My Commander asked me if I know of the brevity of the situation and I replied yes sir. I received a administrative Article 15, a slap on the wrist.
What we see in the Army's reaction to LGBT people is in fact a reflection of the strong race bigotry that is unofficially condoned. As a person who was "different" I became very close to others who did not exactly match the Aryan picture uncle wanted. These people became my life blood. Sometimes I would be questioned as to why white people acted so offensively and to this I can only shrug my shoulders. I was not born with a active bigot bone.

What we are witnessing in the different reactions that the population is demonstrating in IRAQ to the European approach and ours is not exclusively a demographically universal response of the indigent population.
It mirrors my response to intolerance. I too stood and waved my finger in a act of defiance as did my commander in his jurisprudence to my participation in the highly prosecutable weekend activities.

The military can help to end the conflict the politicians created by becoming participants in humanity. We can learn from the worlds inclusion of GLBT people into their military. Contrary to the US ARMY'S official response the consequence of allowing LGBT people to disclose their affinity will not be fatal to our soldiers and would not adversely affect a units readiness. Quite the opposite. My friends knew me much better than I did, but if anything my candor made our bonds of trust unbreakable. Dear Elgin, the man who patiently dragged me, a unwilling student into understanding friendship, Rufus my running partner, James my pudding head best bud and everyone. Thank you.

Reconciling Ministries New Blog Proactive Radical Inclusion

By Kelli Busey
July 1, 2008

The Reconciling Ministries Network is launching a new blog in accordance to it's mission of bringing ALL of God's children home. In following the teachings of our lord, this vision of radical inclusion has been shaped into action by Antony Hebblethwaite and the staff of of the RMN. Among the writers who are contributing are people who have known personally Dr Martin Luther King's struggle, people who have experienced South African apartheid, pastors who are living with the denial of their Church to minister because of sexual affinity and teachers who have dedicated their lives to the good of human kind. All are human rights activists who are now deeply involved with bringing us together in peace. And one transgender truck driver, thats me. I was so inspired to by what I saw in General Conference 2008 that I self promoted my application to contribute to this blog and to my amazement, was accepted. But I got cold feet after reading the biographies that the other writers submitted. I questioned myself about my abilities. How could I ever write on the level as these educated and wonderful people. And lets face it, I'm not the most pious of people. I'm more akin to the 250lb hot dog with mustard and relish eating 9th inning self appointed 3rd base coach! Antony wrote back to me and said "easy girl". This is what reconciling means. Inclusion. So we are all here. And this is the scoop of my life! This world is after all a place for me.

Reconciling Ministries Network is a national grassroots organization that exists to enable full participation of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities in the life of the United Methodist Church, both in policy and practice.