Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Callous or Ignorant

In the recent months, State legislatures have been working a lot on civil unions and same sex marriage. Some states are voting to give rights to homosexuals and some are voting to take them away. In the case of the State of Indiana, to REALLY take them away.

What strikes me as either stupidity, ignorance or just plain callous is that the people who are fighting against equal rights hope they are not offending anyone. One Representative in Indiana went so far as to say that "no one is getting hurt...." This came out in the Indianapolis Star written by Heather Gillers

Eric Turner, R-Marion, who authored the measure, said the language of the ban had been thoroughly reviewed by lawyers.

A co-author of the measure, Dave Cheatham, D-North Vernon, said the resolution "is not against anyone; it's not trying to hurt anyone."

He said lawmakers were being asked to consider a single question.

"Do you believe that marriage is between one man and one woman?"
The amendment was rejected 60-32.

Does Mr. Cheatham really believe that this is not against anyone, because I kind of think that it is against people who are of the same sex wanting to some day get married in the state of Indiana. I really think that it is hurting those of us who are not heterosexual who want the same benefits as those who are heterosexual. It is against us and it does hurt us and those we love.

Next we have the Maryland folks:

Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Maryland's GOP Senate Leader hopes gay colleagues don't take debate 'personally'

Posted by Timothy Beauchamp at 2/23/2011 08:17:00 AM

As we've noted, the Senate in Maryland will start the debate today on the "Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Act" -- and it is expected to run into Thursday. Our side has the 24 votes needed to pass the bill, but the debate could get ugly. The top GOPer in the Senate doesn't want gay legislators to take it "personally":

Minority Leader Nancy Jacobs, a Republican leading opposition to the bill, said she believes "only a handful" of GOP members will stand up and speak against the bill. She said she's expecting speeches from a small group of Democrats who oppose the bill.

Like others, she expressed a desire for the debate to be civil.

"We all love our gay friends in the House and the Senate," Jacobs said. "I hope and pray that this does not get personal and does not get taken personally."

Now why would the gays elected to serve in the House and Senate take it personally to have their colleagues claiming they shouldn't be able to share in the same rights? How typical and sickening for a Republican to smugly argue they want to continue to discriminate but hope "the gays" don't take it personally. Another thing I'd like my Republican "friends" to know. If they don't want me to have equal rights, they can "love me" all they want but I won't be "loving them" back. I just don't believe in that form of "love" that is strangely synonymous with what would otherwise be known as hate. In fact, that is a very funny definition of love for them to deny us our basic human rights.

Actions speak louder than words, Ms. Jacobs.

The big news breaking today is that the Department of Justice will no longer defend The Defense of Marriage Act in court.

I guess we can call this a small victory. When I can marry my sweetheart, call her my wife, and she can legally immigrate to the United States of America with no fears, I will call that a victory. Until then, I will continue my daily onslaught of contacting Congress and asking them to pass the Uniting American Families Act.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

and Still We Wait......The History of the Uniting American Families Act

In the year 2000, the Permanent Partners Immigration Act was introduced into the 106th Congress by Representative Jerry Nadler (D-NY). It had 59 cosponsors. It died in House Subcommittee on Immigration and Claims.........and still we wait.

It was re-introduced into the 107th, 108th and 109th Congress by Representative Nadler and again buried in subcommittee.....and still we wait

There are currently 19 countries with gay immigration policies that allow sponsorship of same-sex partners. These countries include:

Czech Republic
New Zealand
South Africa
United Kingdom

.........................and still we wait

In the 108th Congress, the Senate finally got involved and it was introduced by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and re-introduced into the House by Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY). By this time the bill in the House of Representatives had 129 cosponsors yet both bills died by being buried in sub committee.

The 109th and the 110th Congress saw huge increases in co-sponsorship for these bills, but again, it was buried in subcommittee...............and still we wait

During the 111th Congress, the bills came out on February 12th with 135 cosponsers in the House and 25 in the Senate. They both died in their respective Judiciary Committees.
Represenitive Michael Honda saw the huge injustice being done to US citizens, and tried again with HR 2709. This bill was introduced on June 4th and again died in committee.

.....................and still we wait

The bills have yet to be introduced to the 112th Congress.............and still we wait

Some wait in exile in different countries waiting for the day when they can return with their spouses to their home. Some wait separated from their loved ones unable to join them for different reasons. Some wait here in the United States illegally and live in fear that they will soon be forced apart.

We have been told that the borders need to be secured, yet, experts agree, that passing the Uniting American Families Act would help secure the borders.

We have been told that we need to deal with the economy first. Again experts agree that by passing the Uniting American Families Act, the economy would be helped and billions would flow into our economy.

How can the great, freedom loving, justice for all United States of American allow this grave injustice to be done to it's citizens? How is this good for our country? How is this liberty and justice for all American citizens? It is not.

We have been waiting for years. The Congress has had plenty of time for debate. Let's bring this to the floor of Congress, let's get this passed. The time of waiting needs to end. There is no need to deny us the basic right of being able to be with the one we love because we are different.

Please, Pass the Uniting American Families Act!!

.................and still we wait

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Bird Behind the Bar "Happy Valentines Day"

Used with permission. Thank you. This story is a powerful & different look at a story that I have followed in my blog (A Love Story & I am My Beloved's) I appreciate the opportunity to post it here in my blog.

bird behind the bar

Rants, wise words and stupid conversations
Thursday, 17 February 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

With the commercial con of Valentine's Day over, this Bird's heart can now turn without cynicism to thoughts of true love. I want to share the story of a friend of mine, a big-hearted and loving woman who deserves the best from life. Philippa has wife in the States, who's daughter from a previous marriage knows her as 'Mum', but under US federal law, unlike a heterosexual couple, her wife is not permitted to sponsor her to move to America. They are both fighting tooth and nail to change this heart-breaking and discriminatory law, with endless brave interviews, campaigns and lobbying.

The link below will tell you more than I can of this perplexing legal situation, but the story I want to tell is the one I have seen with my own eyes. This Bird has the esteemed honor of playing in a band with Philippa. She is passionate, talented and full of life. She lives much of this life, however, via webcams, mobile phones and 'facebook'. Her relationship with her wife, Inger, is so real and present I already consider Inger a friend, although I have never met her. Philippa regularly rings her during band practices, and we will play a new tune to the phone to see what Inger thinks of it. We have group phone conversations full of laughter. She also chats regularly with her daughter, helping with homework on the web cams, and even checking that she's tidied her bedroom.

I also see Philippa on the bad days: the days when all she wants in the world is to hold her wife in her arms because she has had a bad day; the times when her daughter has her first day at a new school and she cannot be there to see her at the school gate; the times when she comes to band practice bleary-eyed because the time differences mean that if she want to talk with her wife after a full day's work she has to wait up until 4 a.m.; the times when, despite the soul-deep love she has for her family, she wonders where she can find the strength to carry on. She does carry on, and I have the utmost admiration for Philippa and her wife for their courage and commitment. Even when the fight for legal change is won, Philippa will face a move 5000 miles to another continent, away from family, friends and the life she has known, to be with her family. This alone would be an act of tremendous courage for anyone, but for Philippa this would be the happy ending to the story, a sobering thought.

This Bird cannot help but wonder that, if the US government is so afraid that family values are becoming a thing of the past, surely anyone willing to make such a determined effort to keep a family together should be heralded, not discriminated against. After all, what couple could show more commitment to love and family?
Click on the title of this blog,or here, watch the short film, and I challenge you not to shed a tear.

Happy Valentine's Day x x x x x x
Posted by bird behind the bar at 11:08

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Prayers for Equality: An interview with Sigourney Weaver

By Jamie McGonnigal • Sunday, February 13, 2011 •
Cross-posted at

In our struggle for equality, we are so often met with the question “Can people really change?”

We so frequently run up against the wall of having a conversation with someone who seems unmovable. And sometimes, the sad truth of the matter is that some people are indeed unmovable.

In the case of Mary Griffith, it wasn’t until her young gay son took his own life that she saw the repercussions of her ignorance.

Mary’s story, “Prayers for Bobby” by Leroy Arons, tells the story of life with her son, Bobby. And most importantly, it tells the story of how someone can change when presented with irrational fears of what they don’t understand.

The book was made into a film last year by the Lifetime Network and it garnered several recognitions including Emmy nominations for Outstanding Made for Television Movie and Outstanding Leading Actress in a Miniseries or Movie, for Sigourney Weaver.

The film won the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Miniseries or TV Movie and Weaver took home a Trevor Life Award from the Trevor Project for her portrayal of Mary Griffith.

On the occasion of the DVD release, Weaver took a few moments to chat with Talk About Equality about the film, on playing Mary Griffith and how things can get better.

T.A.E.: Talk About Equality is devoted to telling our stories and we believe that these stories are what will help us win our equality. In your travels, have you had the opportunity to see or hear about the impact your telling of Mary’s story has had on someone?

Sigourney Weaver: A young person had confided in her mother a few days before that she was gay and her mother had freaked out and taken her phone away and grouneded her. Then they Saw the movie together and the mother started the process of being able to talk about it with her child and it went from impossible to…let’s start this dialogue. And it was such an immediate heartening result from watching the movie together. It [the movie] takes you through people coming out with such disastrous results.

Mary Griffith
I thought my friends surely didn’t have that big a problem but the four people I talked to had such terrible stories to share with me.

One of them, who goes out in drag quite a bit — his grandmother actually helps him get ready, but they’ve never discussed it … it defies logic … so there’s a real need for more stories like this to be told.

T.A.E.: The transition Mary had after the loss of Bobby is one that so many kids fantasize will happen with their own intolerant parents. Speaking as a parent, what would you tell these intolerant parents and how did you personally handle Mary’s transition from intolerance to pride?

S. W.: The main thing to remember is that you love your child and we as parents must love and respect our children and listen to them.

I think the one thing I feel was so tragic about what Mary did was not her belief or her ignorance, but that she refused to listen to Bobby. She just refused to, and that actually is what cost him his life. If she’d been able to listen, if she had been able to keep that door open, then things might have worked out differently.

Sigourney Weaver and Ryan Kelley in
Prayers for Bobby
As a parent we all have a tendency to want our children to lead very safe regular lives. Lives that are protected somehow — It’s really a fallacy. Its not what any of us did and we have to be brave enough as parents to trust our children and encourage them to be who
they are and all that they are.

It takes such incredible courage to be gay in
this society, in this world right now and your child really needs your support — really needs you to be there for him or her. It’s the most important way you can express your love to your child – by listening and supporting.

T.A.E.: You’re an actor who never shies away from a challenge when it comes to the roles you choose — from the big commercial hits like “Avatar” or “Aliens” to smaller releases like “Prayers for Bobby” or “Snow Cake” — and each of these characters I’m sure brought something new to your life.

Did you have a “seeing the world with new eyes” moment with this character and movie?

S. W.: I definitely did. When I read the script I was a little of horrified by Mary — I thought there was this huge chasm between myself and her. My immediate thought was she must live in this kind of place that’s far away from a metropolis, where there might be a big gay community. And then of course when I visited her — she’s about 30 minutes away from downtown San Francisco.

I realized that we can be closed-minded wherever we are — even in a big city. I think I had used that geographical idea to sort of marginalize Mary and once I realized that she was in a city and I met her — mother to mother — I realized how much she loved Bobby, how much she loved all her children.

Bobby Griffith
Her house is filled with things he made — his dolls, his drawings, his little attic room is just as he left it. We just met as mothers. She is so courageous and so honest and so candid about who she was then and what the repercussions had been of her prejudice and ignorance.

And after a day with Mary, I felt — ya know, that I get fearful for my daughter when I think of her doing things and I found the Mary in myself.

We are parents who want to protect our children from things we don’t understand, things that frighten us.

I stopped being the East Coast judger. This can happen to any of us. It creeps up on us because we love our children and we think by loving them, we should keep them from being who they are. If I just say no, they can change their minds.

The more you talk to Mary — she thought he was making a lifestyle choice. It took her forever to understand that this was part of God’s plan for Bobby.

And that’s what the story is, of the terrible mistakes she made, and that he was perfect as he was. She just couldn’t see it. She didn’t have any help or support until she reached out to PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays). PFLAG saved her and made it possible for her to share her story with all the rest of us.

T.A.E.: I’m sure you’ve heard about Dan Savage’s It Gets Better Project, designed to reach out to LGBT kids who may be contemplating suicide. In that vein, if you could, if things were different, is there anything you would want to say to Bobby Griffith?

S. W.: Wow … I would say … ‘Dear Bobby, give your mother [a chance...]‘ … these are all things he did do because he loved his family so much. He tried so hard to give them the time to embrace him as who he was.

So it’s very hard for me to know what to say to Bobby except, ‘We’re going to do everything we can to make sure kids don’t feel that way.’

It’s so hard to say ‘go live your life’ and eventually your family will come around and you will find out that you can be this magnificent gay man with so much to offer, with a community and with a family you can have — a family of your own and eventually your family will hopefully meet you halfway.

And if not, you’ll have your own family and your own community and it will get better. What could be more painful than what you’re going through now? So just hang in there. And know there are people who love you and care about you and value you and you should be around, because you’re a terrific young person.

For Bobby, everything hinged on the approval of his family. I think there wasn’t The Trevor Project or all these other places where he could have, maybe had, more people reaching out to him.

Where he could finally get the message? It was a message he felt he didn’t have the right to accept. He couldn’t allow himself to love someone and be loved if his family didn’t love him first. That’s the lesson from this story really — it’s really hard for someone to love themselves without ever learning how to from their family.

Many thanks to Sigourney for taking the time out to speak with us about this incredible film.

If you have not seen it, you can order the DVD here. And if you have seen it, go buy a few copies of the DVD to give to friends and family who might be able to use it.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Don't need a Marriage Amendment...

When my friend, Eric, re-posted this on his Face Book page, I loved it. I messaged Jackie and asked her if I could use it in my blog. She graciously granted me permission and thanked me for enlightening her on the injustice being done to gay bi-national couples. The State of Indiana wants to put it in their Constitution that homosexual marriage is forbidden. Whereas it is already not legal, they want to put another nail in the coffin. Thank you Jackie for your words and your actions.

by Jackie Nytes on Monday, February 7, 2011 at 9:45pm

Now I am frustrated that I could not be at the Statehouse today to speak against efforts to pass a marriage amendment. I think that there should be a corresponding effort to outlaw divorce if they are so determined to protect marriage! Get real state legislature, you are looking pretty old school on this one. Younger folks get it and they will be voting for a long time, my mother gets it and she is 86 years old, business gets it--they made that clear in many hearings over the last few years, have you been under a rock or what? We need you to be working on our economy and our educational achievement, not this! Stop being so scared of a few fear mongering lobbyists who threaten your electability if you try to be really honest about this. I know maybe it is hard for you to talk about it if you have not had a chance to up to now, but really, anyone willing to commit to marriage deserves to have that chance...and its the 21st century in a country that talks about equal opportunity...


The Daily Kos: State of the Nation
reported the following poll.

Poll: 65% favor at least civil unions for same sex couples

by Jed Lewison
Tue Feb 08, 2011 at 11:28:04 AM PST

Public Policy Polling for Daily Kos. 2/3-6. Registered voters. MoE 3.1% (1/16 results)
Which of the following best describes your opinion on gay marriage: gay couples should be allowed to legally marry, or gay couples should be allowed to form civil unions but not legally marry, or there should be no legal recognition of a gay couple's relationship.

Marry Civil unions Neither
All 31 (34) 34 (31) 34 (33)

Dem 46 (53) 30 (24) 21 (20)
Rep 10 (11) 34 (35) 55 (52)
Ind 36 (37) 38 (34) 25 (27)

Lib 67 (78) 20 (10) 11 (12)
Mod 37 (40) 39 (38) 22 (20)
Con 9 (8) 32 (32) 56 (57)

Tea Party 13 (17) 36 (30) 50 (52)
Non-TP 38 (42) 33 (30) 27 (27)

18-29 41 (52) 26 (13) 32 (33)
30-45 35 (37) 29 (31) 34 (29)
46-65 27 (31) 34 (36) 33 (31)
65+ 22 (23) 41 (34) 34 (42)

Not much has changed since kos wrote about our initial results on marriage equality last month:

We're going to be asking this question every four weeks, so over the next several years, we should have some fascinating trend-lines to look at. For now, this is our own baseline, and not surprisingly, it is conservatives/Republicans/Teabaggers who hate the notion of marriage equality. Also unsurprising -- opposition to equality is directly correlated with age, and as that older generation dies off, it is replaced with the infinitely more tolerant millenials. That's why the rightwing is desperately trying to codify their hate into law and state constitutions -- because they know the march of progress and the changing culture is headed toward a more tolerant future, not less.

One thing to note is that while the top lines haven't changed much, the numbers within groups have changed. That's largely because with sub samples, the margin of error is a bit higher. Fundamentally, not much has changed: an overwhelming majority of Americans support at least civil unions for same sex couples.

Another thing that is fairly interesting is that in all the age cohorts, one-third are opposed to any legal recognition, but younger people are more likely to support full equality than older folks. So it seems that those who are most committed to bigotry might be set in their ways, but within the two-thirds of the country that is more tolerant, there's some flexibility.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Economic Case for Inclusive Immigration Reform

by Steve Ralls

Steve Ralls is the Communications Director at Immigration Equality (please go to their website at

Thank you, Steve, for your amazing article and please keep up the good work at Immigration Equality.


In the State of the Union address, President Obama called on Congress, once again, to tackle the issue of comprehensive immigration reform. In his first remarks on the topic since the Senate voted down the DREAM Act — which would have provided young people a path to citizenship in return for service in our armed forces or obtaining a degree at a college or university in the United States — the President laid out the case for fixing a woefully broken system that hasn’t been reformed in decades.

It is no accident that the President included immigration as part of a speech that focused heavily on boosting our country’s economy. The two are inextricably linked, and smart reform can be part of the plan to put the U.S. further ahead on the road to economic progress. No matter where you fall on the issue of immigration, there is no denying that our immigration policy impacts our workforce, tax base and businesses, too.

In his remarks, President Obama specifically noted the absurdity of continuing to force talented young people, who are educated and trained in the United States, to leave the country once their education is complete. “As soon as they obtain advanced degrees, we send them back home to compete against us,” the President said. “It makes no sense.”

He’s right, of course. But there’s another piece of the immigration puzzle that makes no sense, either.

Current immigration laws are forcing some American citizens to quit their jobs, sell their homes and leave their own country. That’s right: American citizens. More than 36,000 of them, who happen to be lesbian and gay and have a partner from another country, face the unimaginable choice of leaving their country — and their jobs — behind, or tearing their families apart.

Last year, Immigration Equality worked with Steve Orner, an American citizen whose Indonesian partner lost his work visa when the economy went south and his employer started laying off workers. Steve’s partner, who is a structural engineer specializing in infrastructure projects, received his PhD in engineering right here in the United States. His degree was even funded by government scholarships. Our country recognized the extraordinary contribution he could make… but because of discriminatory immigration laws, he was turned away. Steve has now quit his job in the U.S., and the two are in the process of reuniting in Canada, where both of them will have their skills welcomed, and their relationship recognized.

In California, Judy Rickard took early retirement from her job so she could be with her partner, who is British, year-round. The two could only remain together in the U.S. six months each year, and that made it impossible to keep her job in place and her family intact.

A similar scenario plays out, all around the country, every day. In Vermont, Michael Upton, who has worked with injured veterans at a local VA facility, was forced to confront the same choice after falling in love with a partner from abroad. In Minnesota, a small business owner faces the possibility of shuttering her business — which generates approximately $1 million in tax revenue — because her partner cannot live here in the U.S. with her.

All of these stories — and the thousands of others like them — would be a thing of the past if Congress would simply amend immigration laws to grant lesbian and gay Americans the ability — as their straight neighbors have long had — to sponsor their life partners for residency here in the United Sates.

The Uniting American Families Act (UAFA), which would end the double standard some couples face under our current system, would allow Steve to remain in the U.S., and his partner to be part of rebuilding our infrastructure. It would allow Judy and Michael the opportunity to keep their full-time jobs, too. And it would give every employer a key tool they need to recruit and retain a skilled, talented workforce that is, increasingly, forced to take their talents abroad.

It’s no wonder that a growing list of Fortune 500 companies, including industry leaders like Pfizer, American Airlines, Cisco Systems, Nike and others, have signed onto a business coalition urging Congress to pass UAFA. Including this simple — but enormously important — provision in comprehensive immigration reform would help numerous businesses, both big and small. Currently, 59% of OECD countries — our main international competitors — offer the same for lesbian and gay couples. It is past time for the United States to do so as well.

The President was right to call on Congress to cross partisan lines and address immigration reform. Doing so makes good sense for businesses, families and the economy. But that reform must include UAFA, too, so that American businesses can retain American workers and have a key advantage in the race to remain competitive.

Just as it makes no sense to train workers in our own country and then force them to leave, it also makes no sense to force American citizens, and American workers, outside of the American workforce, either. It’s time, as President Obama said on Tuesday night, to “stop expelling talented, responsible people who could be staffing our research labs or starting a new business, who could be further enriching this nation.”

That includes lesbian and gay workers, too.

Bread Crumbs from the Table of the King

We are not asking for equality in marriage. We are not asking to be equal human beings as American Citizens. We are not asking for those opposed to homosexuals to move mountains. In truth, all we are asking for are bread crumbs from the table of the King. We are asking that we be able to sponsor our partners for immigration. We are asking, pleading, yea we are begging to be allowed to be with the person we love.

As much as that churns my proud American stomach and makes my proud American heart rebel against it, it is true. We are only asking to be allowed to sponsor our partners so that we can have the luxury of eating lunch with the person with whom we have fallen in love.

In your heart, can you look deep inside and find a little compassion to grant to us the passing of the Uniting American Families Act. Please.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Zack Wahls Talks About Being Raised by Two Moms!

As my spouse and I have two sons, I found this to be quite wonderful. It is a shame that the fight for people to be married and have equal rights has to have so much debate. Shame on the States for not supporting Same Sex Marriage. We don't want to take away the rights of anyone, all we want is the same rights.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Jesus, the greatest commandments and Homosexuality

There are a lot of things that Jesus talked about while He was here on this Earth. Jesus' favorite subject was Hell. He calls it "outer darkness", "everlasting fire" and Hell. The Lord Jesus Christ also spoke of the Greatest Commandments in the book of Matthew.
Matthew 22:36-40 (New International Version, ©2010)

36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Now Jesus was then asked the question, "who is my neighbor". Jesus then proceeded to tell the story of the Good Samaritan. If you remember from Sunday School, the Samaritans were hated by the Jews because they were half-breeds, not to be outdone, the Samaritans hated the Jews. And so what was the insightful Jesus really saying when he answered the question of loving one’s neighbor? The person you hate the most is your neighbor and is deserving of your love.

Did Jesus ever get angry at anyone when he was here on this Earth. You bet He did. This is one of my favorite passages. It is where Jesus is talking to the ruling religious body of His time on Earth; the Pharisees.

Matthew 23

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law, justice and mercy and faith; these you ought to have done, without neglecting the others. You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel! ... Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within they are full of dead men's bones and all uncleanness.

Mark 8 - When Jesus overturns the tables in the temple. Again, it is a rebuke to the religious people of this time.

On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry. And seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see if he could find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. And he said to it, "May no one ever eat fruit from you again." And his disciples heard it. And they came to Jerusalem. And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold and those who bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons; and he would not allow any one to carry anything through the temple. And he taught, and said to them, "Is it not written, 'My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations'? But you have made it a den of robbers." And the chief priests and the scribes heard it and sought a way to destroy him; for they feared him, because all the multitude was astonished at his teaching. And when evening came they went out of the city. As they passed by in the morning, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots. And Peter remembered and said to him, "Master, look! The fig tree which you cursed has withered."

Jesus has to correct his disciples when they try to chase away the little children from coming to Him. Might I say that the disciples were those closest to Christ.

Mark 10

And they were bringing children to him, that he might touch them; and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw it he was indignant, and said to them, "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it." And he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands upon them.

It can be seen here, that when Jesus got angry and was rebuking, it was at the religious people of the day. Too bad the religious people of our day don't learn from this. Who is their neighbor. Don't stop people who are trying to bring people to Jesus by hating them.

Jesus never mentioned homosexuality, but He did condemn all forms of sexual immorality:

What comes out of you is what defiles you. For from within, out of your hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and defile you. (TNIV, Mark 7:20-23)

So what is the reason we allow some people equal rights and not others. The reason being that this is a "sin" of which they are not guilty, therefore, they can make a big deal out of it. The Bible says that lying is an abomination, yet all kinds of liars have equal rights, can marry and can run for Congress. However, because everyone has lied sometime in their lives, it is not considered to be a "bad" sin. That is not what the Bible if we are going to use the Bible to condemn homosexuality (although Jesus didn't condemn homosexuality) we must also use it to condemn liars.

I believe that the United Methodist Church has a good stance on the subject:

Homosexual persons no less than heterosexual persons are individuals of sacred worth. All persons need the ministry and guidance of the church in their struggles for human fulfillment, as well as the spiritual and emotional care of a fellowship that enables reconciling relationships with God, with others, and with self. Although we do not condone the practice of homosexuality and consider this practice incompatible with Christian teaching, we affirm that God's grace is available to all. We implore families and churches not to reject or condemn their lesbian and gay members and friends. We commit ourselves to be in ministry for and with all persons.

Certain basic human rights and civil liberties are due all persons. We are committed to supporting those rights and liberties for homosexual persons. We see a clear issue of simple justice in protecting their rightful claims where they have shared material resources, pensions, guardian relationships, mutual powers of attorney, and other such lawful claims typically attendant to contractual relationships that involve shared contributions, responsibilities, and liabilities, and equal protection before the law. Moreover, we support efforts to stop violence and other forms of coercion against gays and lesbians. We also commit ourselves to social witness against the coercion and marginalization of former homosexuals.
From The Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church--2000, ¶161G, 162H. Copyright 2000 by The United Methodist Publishing House,

When did Jesus get angry at the sinners? Let me think, He got water from the woman at the well, He ate with Zacchaeus, He healed the woman with the issue of blood, he healed the Centurion's beloved male servant (which some believe to be the Centurion's boyfriend), He cast out the demons, He said to the thief, "Today you will be with Me in Paradise"...Jesus had compassion and love.

It is too bad that Christians today are following in the footsteps of the Spanish Inquisition, the Crusades, the Salem Witch trials and other misdeeds done in the name of God instead of following in the steps of the Lord Jesus Christ who said to the woman guilty of sexual misdeeds, "neither do I condemn thee...."

I am a woman who is in love with a woman. When we finally get the right to marry, I will marry the love of my life. We will quote from Ruth 1:16&17 and I believe that our marriage will be blessed by God Almighty.