Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Movie List

The Movies that mean a lot to me:

The Fellowship of the Ring (Peter Jackson)

The Two Tower (Peter Jackson)

The Return of the King (Peter Jackson)

The Hunt for Red October

Gone with the Wind (for its study of classic female archetypes)

The Orginal Star Wars film (which ushered in an era and brought closure to my grief over losing a friend in a car accident)

The Other Side of Heaven (Best film ever made about Mormons)

A Christmas Story (How the rest of us really live and celebrate Christmas)

Obsession (Hitchcock)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Another Question Regarding Organizations such As Evergreen and Journey into Manhood

Every so often, a letter arrives from Church Headquarters to be read over the pulpit. One of those letters was read last week and dealt with the topic of therapeutic, social service agencies/non profits that loosely claim or present themselves as having an affiliation with the church. This is the don't do it letter that seems to come out every four to five years. With the recent publicity of Journey Into Manhood's program, I could not help but wonder about the timing of this recent letter and it would seem that Journey into Manhood is exactly the kind of suspect organization doing all the same things that the other suspect programs and organizations have done in the past with a gay focus.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Two Sides of the Same Rhetorical Coin

I find myself wondering if the gay community's readiness to blame that person's family of origin and the church when a GLBT LDS person commits suicide (or dies in any way that could be suicide)isn't very much the same as the readiness within certain segments of religious communities to blame the family or the gay person (i.e. his or her parents for not providing appropriate role modeling) and the gay community (i.e. the culture, the recruiters, etc.)for a person's expression of sexual identity or acknowledgment of same sex attraction.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Colt Hansen-Updates you may not have read . . .


"#1 – The fight between Colt and his Father the night before. It was originally told to PRIDEinUtah that the fight was over the Mormon (LDS) religion. It looks like this has been disproven, and the fight was over some private family matters which I don’t think I should post here.

#2 – Was his death a suicide? This is mostly likely going to be a grey area permanently. Half of Colt’s friends (including the ones who initially spoke with PRIDEinUtah last week) are saying it was a suicide, but the other half are saying his overdose on depression and surgery medications was an accident. The simple fact is we may not ever find out which it was. We are still trying to see the coroner’s report, but we are told the cause of death is still undetermined. However, after speaking with several health professionals we have been advised that even if it was suicide, the cause of death will almost always still be listed as accidental.

#3 – The parents do not want friends to attend the funeral. This was both true and false it seems. The family initially announced that it would be a family-only affair, prompting our story on Friday. Since then however his family has come out saying that they only did that because they didn’t think anyone would come. Any friends of Colt who would like to attend will be more than welcomed by the family. However this still doesn’t change the facts of how they handled the obituary, or that they are asking for donations to the Mormon Mission Fund in Colt’s name.

When it comes down to it though folks, none of this really matters. What matters is that we have lost an incredibly wonderful person in our community. The outpouring at his memorial at Try-Angles last night was incredibly beautiful, so many of Colt’s friends and co-workers shared personal stories about how he brightened their lives. I was in tears by the end, and was reminded of what’s really important. It’s not the details of someone’s death that count. It’s remembering who they were, and renewing your personal pledge to be the best friend you can be so that hopefully one day we can end these senseless deaths.

Rest in peace Colt, you will be dearly missed and you were dearly loved."

Saturday, November 6, 2010

An Emancipation Story

Ahhh, Freedom from Oppression on the new Underground Railroad for unhappy GLBT youth. Moho Hawaii blogs about a 29 year old cousin who intends to insist his 16 year old cousin in fleeing from oppressive Utah. I must say I can't wait to hear how this one plays out(Adult gay male relative lures Utah teen from his home-wait till the homophobes seize on that one).

As a parent, I do not support this kind of meddling from well intentioned outsiders and we had quite an issue with one of our hetero kids with it. With the Kid, he also wanted to move out early and I blocked it. Kind of. But not really, because here was the deal, "Kid, you meet all the requirements the court would have, i.e. show that you are capable of managing your financial affairs, etc. and I WILL HELP you fill out the paperwork for your emanicipation petition and support you before the court in getting it."

This is an issue that pops up in my professional life from time to time. There are adults who are happy to provide other people's children a place to sleep on a couch or with their child, to have unprotected sex, drink, use drugs and not go to school. I've not seen the gay version of this, but I've certainly seen it with hetero kids. "Oh, and Mom, me and her have a paper route, and her Mom can get extra food stamps if I come live with them and extra money from the state." And, in all fairness there are others who are just willing to help otherwise mostly responsible teenagers with real or perceived problems.

In our later case, the Kid didn't like the offer to assist him in becoming emancipated. At all. And the funny thing was as eighteen neared, he was not quite so ready to go and needed some ever so gentle motherly nudging to launch from the nest. We are all happy now and he has completed high school, which he would not have if emancipated or "moved out," is furthering his education and ability to support himself, and, I think is relatively happy NOW.

GLBTQ youth NEED their parents. They need them for access to Medical Care. Does 29 year old cousin have the ability to ensure that if there is a serious organic component to depression of teen cousin, he can get treatment for that? Some more than others need them for the structure and responsiblity. Is 29 year old cousin really ready to enforce some reasonable rules or is it going to be party hardy central in his apartment day and night? Hell, is he ready and financially able to feed the typical older teenage boy? And, I could go on.

If it is really that oppressive, then the local child protection agency would be involved and placement with the cousin may indeed be an option, but, interfering with the parent child relationship when that point has not been reached is indefensible. Adult cousin should offer to help in anyway he can, but if rebuffed should stay out of state and mind his own business until cousin is eighteen.