Thursday, May 17, 2012

Hop Against Homophobia


When I was in seventh grade, one of my best friends came out as gay. I went to a private religious school but for some lucky reason most people just took it in stride. The people who hadn't liked him before still didn't like him and the people who did like him, still liked him. We had a couple of openly gay teachers and an openly trans* person who worked in the office. For the most part, life went on as usual.

Then in ninth grade, he was the first one in our group of friends to get a significant other. I was excited for him and when I was visiting my Dad's house for the weekend, I mentioned it at dinner along with all the other things that had happened in the two weeks since I had seen him and my Step-mom. I was completely unprepared for their reaction. I had a vague notion that my Dad and Step-mom were stricter than my Mom and that their church was more conservative but mostly it hadn't really translated into any real life consequences. Hearing them talk about the evils of homosexuality was the first time I consciously recognized that my faith was not necessarily anything like the faith of my parents.

For almost a decade I struggled to reconcile my faith with the God I knew, a God who never hate someone for how they were born, a God who would never hate anyone. Period. Amazingly enough, the first M/M Romance (ish) book I read is what helped me to start understanding how I could reconcile the two. I worked at a Christian Bookstore at the time and they got a in a book called The God Box by Alex Sanchez. It is a bit preachier than I look for in my reading material these days but it was an epiphany at the time. I don't even remember the exact theological points from the book anymore, just that it started a new conversation in my mind.

Two years ago, in the course of my graduate school studies, I took a class called Eros and Civilization: Scripture, Society and Homosexuality. As a part of this class I did a project on the impact of religiously based homophobia. I put a survey up on the M/M Romance Group and asked for people to respond with their experiences. The response was almost overwhelming. My heart broke as I read over my survey results.

Homophobia, whether religiously motivated or not, is an evil that we can no longer tolerate. "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good [people] to do nothing."

In our M/M Romance community, there are over 250 authors, reviewers, editors, and publishers who have chosen to speak up by participating in this year's Hop Against Homophobia. Check out that link to read their stories.


Thank you so much for visiting today and I would love to hear from you. If you comment below, you will be entered for a drawing on Sunday, May 20th, 2012 for some cool prizes. Make sure to include a way to contact you (email preferred). Three winners will be drawn.

DRAWING CLOSED! Winners posted here.

PRIZES:
1 copy of an eBook I have rated or reviewed on this blog
1 free custom written ficbit
1 item under $15 from the Human Right's Campaign Store

23 comments:

  1. Hi Kathleen, thanks for supporting this cause. Please enter me in your contest. We know each other from the GR MM Romance Group. Great website.

    ~ Monica

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  2. thank you for sharing this with us today. I think this is an important cause that needs the spotlight shining on it.

    musings-of-a-bookworm@hotmail.co.uk

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  3. Thanks for sharing and support for the cause.

    melaniem54(at)msn(dot)com

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  4. I do think too many good people do nothing. They feel like it isn't their fight because they aren't GLBT. I'm not a lesbian but I believe everyone should have the exact same rights. Limiting rights of one group will only spread to other groups.

    geishasmom73 AT yahoo DOT com

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  5. Hi sister. You're a boss. That is all.

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  6. This is a cause that everyone must take part in...
    Yvette
    yratpatrol@aol.com

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  7. Thanks for participating in the hop. This is a great cause that I pray one day will not be needed.

    forettarose@yahoo.com

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  8. Thanks for participating in the Hop Kathleen!
    Like you, my faith isn't the same one my father seems to believe in, and that's ok!
    I'm a firm believer that one day, this will not be an issue anymore! I really hope it's soon!

    Doublemom2001(at)googlemail(dot)com

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  9. I'm the same way. I still don't know how my parents raised me and I turned out as accepting and open as I did. Just glad for it, however it happened! Doing my best to see that my nephew comes up the same way. :)

    lina7391(at)hotmail.com

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  10. Thank you for participating and showing your support.

    andreagrendahl at gmail dot com

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  11. I was lucky enough to set an example of love for my mother and changed her views as I got older.

    morris.crissy@gmail.com

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  12. Great post Kathleen, my dad was the same as yours and my parents would understand my choice of reading material. Stil it was a book about a gay couple which made me realise that actually while I love my parents, I don't agree with their views on certain topics.

    moonsurfer123 AT gmail DOT com

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  13. Thanks for all your comments and your support!! I was lucky, while Mom didn't necessarily think that it was not a sin to be gay, she has listened as I talked over the years and now she reads everything I write! And so did my Dad, to some extent, before he died. He went from gay people are evil,period, to actually talking to me about it and letting me coax him from his position. He wasn't there before he died but I have hope that I would have convinced him eventually. =)

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  14. thank you for participating in the hop :)

    raynman1979 at yahoo dot com

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  15. Thanks for sharing!

    burchills AT gmail DOT com

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  16. Wonderful. Thank you for participating in this hop!
    Bella
    bellaleone4 at gmail dot com
    www.bellaleonebooks.com

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  17. The evil triumphing because of the good doing nothing is so true. Thanks for taking part in the hop.

    lmbrownauthor at gmail dot com

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  18. Thanks so much for taking part, Kathleen :)

    Erica
    eripike at gmail dot com

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  19. Sometimes I still struggle with reconciling my faith, but I am a firm believer that no matter what, God is love. Thanks for sharing.

    ashley.vanburen[at]gmail[dot]com

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  20. Thanks Kathleen for taking part in the hop and for sharing your post.

    normanielsen@bigpond.com

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  21. Thanks for participating in the HOP.

    gisu29(at)gmail(dot)com

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  22. Thanks for the post. The hop was great.

    Peggy1984@live.com

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  23. Thanks for participating in this hop. I'm enjoying all the great blog posts.

    penumbrareads(at)gmail(dot)com

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