My old friend, Rev. Michael Piazza, wrote this on his blog this morning. It touched me deeply so I’m sharing it now:
I wish I could say I was shocked by the Philando Castile verdict, but, unfortunately, it seemed entirely predictable. What does a black man have to do in this country to get justice against the police? As you know, Castile’s girlfriend livestreamed the aftermath of his shooting. Despite the whole world as witnesses, the officer’s own words, the fact that Philando was unarmed and had done nothing wrong, the police officer still was not held to account for killing an innocent person as his girlfriend’s four-year-old daughter watched from the backseat. How many of our brothers must be executed and their killers exonerated before ALL white Americans understand the need to do more than affirm that “Black Lives MATTER”? That they live in fear of the people who white people assume will protect them is just plain wrong. That white people don’t even try to understand this is evil. It is the evil of people who have had the privilege of power and position endowed on them by their race, without any reflection. If we don’t start singing loud songs of protest this will never change, and that makes us complicit with those who kill innocent black men and with those who refuse to hold the killers accountable. If this doesn’t break your heart then perhaps it has turned to stone … or a burning cross.”
Speak, no, SHOUT out: Black Lives Matter. Until everyone is safe and free in this country, none of us are safe and free.
Today in LGBT History – June 19
1312, UK – Piers Gaveston (1284 – June 19, 1312) is killed. He was the 1st Earl of Cornwall and an English nobleman of Gascon origin, and the favorite of King Edward II of England. It was alleged by medieval chroniclers that Edward II and Piers Gaveston were lovers, a rumor that was reinforced by later portrayals in fiction, such as Christopher Marlowe‘s late 16th-century play Edward II. This assertion has received the support of some modern historians, while others have questioned it. According to Pierre Chaplais, the relationship between the two was that of an adoptive brotherhood, and Gaveston served as an unofficial deputy for a reluctant king. Other historians, like J. S. Hamilton, have pointed out that concern over the two men’s sexuality was not at the core of the nobility’s grievances, which rather centered on Gaveston’s exclusive access to royal patronage. Two Welshmen ran him through with a sword and beheaded him.
1566, UK – King James I of England and Ireland and VI of Scotland (June 19, 1566-March 27, 1625) is born. Responsible for the version of the bible that bears his name, some of James’s biographers conclude that Esme Stewart (later Duke of Lennox), Robert Carr (later Earl of Somerset), and George Villiers (later Duke of Buckingham) were his lovers. Restoration of Apethorpe Hall, undertaken in 2004, revealed a previously unknown passage linking the bedchambers of James and Villiers. (James’ father was murdered in bed with his lover.) King James confined his love to “heterosexual” men.
1790, France – Jean-Baptiste du Val-de-Grâce, baron de Cloots (June 24, 1755 – March 24, 1794) is better known as Anacharsis Cloots, a Prussian nobleman who was a significant figure in the French Revolution. He was nicknamed “orator of mankind”, “citoyen de l’humanité” and “a personal enemy of God”. On this day, he led a delegation of 36 men to declare allegiance to the Declaration of the Rights of Man. He believed there should be no sexual offenses except rape, adultery, seduction, or abduction.
1900 – Laura Zametkin Hobson (June 19, 1900 – February 28, 1986) is born today. She was an American writer, best known for her novels Gentleman’s Agreement (1947) and Consenting Adult (1975).”Consenting Adult” is about a mother dealing with her son’s homosexuality and was based on her experience with her son Christopher.
1971 – The first gay pride week in Ann Arbor, Michigan begins. It had been decreed by the city council.
1975 – The American Medical Association passes a resolution urging all states to repeal laws criminalizing homosexual acts between consenting adults.
1976, Canada – The largest gay demonstration in Canada to date is organized in Montreal by Comité homosexuel anti-répression ( Gay Coalition Against Repression) to protest pre-Olympic “clean-up” raids on gay bars and baths.
1983 – Rapper and song writer Macklemore (June 19, 1983) is born. Benjamin Hammond Haggerty, known by his stage name Macklemore and formerly Professor Mack Lemore, is an American hip hop recording artist from Kent, Washington. His stage name, originating from his childhood, was the name of his made-up superhero. He has significantly collaborated with producer Ryan Lewis as Macklemore & Ryan Lewis. Macklemore voiced his support of LGBT rights and same-sex marriage in the song “Same Love” which condemns homophobia in mainstream hip-hop, society, and mass media.
1983 – In Lynchburg, Virginia, hate-monger Jerry Falwell told his followers that AIDS is a punishment from God, and that no medication could halt the judgment of God. Episcopal Bishop Paul Moore of New York criticized Falwell for using an epidemic as a political weapon.
1995 – On this date, the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Hurley v. Irish-American Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Group of Boston unanimously votes to allow Boston’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade organizers to ban gay groups from marching in the city’s annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Hurly is considered a landmark decision regarding the right to assemble and for groups to determine what message is actually conveyed to the public. The Court rules that private organizations, even if they were planning on and had permits for a public demonstration, were permitted to exclude groups if those groups presented a message contrary to the one the organizing group wanted to convey.
2014 – Presbyterian Church votes to allow pastors to marry same-sex couples.
Let your voice speak out and change the world!
(Historical information obtained from a variety of sources including QUIST at facebook.com/quistapp, Back2Stonewall.com, Lavender Effect, DataLounge.com, Arron’s Gay Info, All Things Queer, RS Levinson, and/or Wikipedia. If you wish to edit an item or add an item, please send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!)