The Department of Health and Human Services recently recognized the RISE project (Recognize, Intervene, Support, and Empower) in Los Angeles County for its work to fight "anti-gay and anti-transgender bias" in the child welfare system in the county:
To address the over-representation of LGBTQ youth in the foster care system, RISE set out to develop and evaluate a multi-pronged approach to helping LGBTQ youth find permanent and supportive families. Early research revealed that many LBGTQ youth in the foster care system question whether their environments are safe spaces. RISE engaged youth to design posters named “Brave Space” and other materials to let all youth know that caseworkers, offices, and other environments are safe places. Equally important is the message to others that anti-gay and anti-transgender remarks won’t be tolerated.
One of the posters features the rainbow colors now ubiquitous in LGBTQ literature along with a message to "embrace, encourage, celebrate who we are." The poster also discourages "homophobic, transphobic, racist, or sexist put downs and remarks."
The Q in the LGBTQ acronym employed by HHS stands for questioning. The even longer acronym LGBTQIA (adding "intersex" and "asexual," or "ally") has not gained widespread usage yet, although it has appeared on government websites from time to time, such as a 2013 Department of Education conference on bullying.
As the debate over gay marriage began heating up, supporters of the idea insisted that it was a matter of basic libertarianism. “Don’t like gay marriage? Don’t have one,” went the bumper-sticker-turned-rallying-cry. Of course, it was never going to be that simple with regard to something as foundational as marriage, and now we are starting to see there are real consequences to being publicly opposed to the practice.
Because of the prosecution of homosexual acts and imprisonment of Oscar Wilde in 1895, which ended a glittering trajectory through late Victorian English society, most people are unaware that Wilde was actually a family man, indeed initially and enthusiastically so.
In Chicago, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has told Chick-fil-A that the fast-food company is not welcome in his town because "Chick-fil-A’s values are not Chicago values." In other words, because Chick-fil-A ownership believes in traditional marriage, it shouldn't bother opening up shop in Chicago.
When President Obama came out last week in favor of redefining marriage, he couched his opinion in the context of federalism, saying, “I think it is a mistake to — try to make what has traditionally been a state issue into a national issue.” During that same interview, however, he declared that a bipartisan law designed to protect states from judges who redefine marriage in other states, is “unconstitutional.” It’s very hard to square these two statements.
President Obama made what's being heralded as a big announcement on same sex marriage. "I've just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married," Obama told ABC News in an interview broadcast this morning. Obama's the first sitting president to come out in favor of same sex marriage.
Vice President Joe Biden is at least part of the reason President Barack Obama came out in favor of same sex marriage yesterday, the president admitted in the interview on the issue with ABC's Robin Roberts:
This morning on ABC, President Obama said that he thinks same sex marriage should be allowed. "I've just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married," the president said.
But he also reaffirmed his belief that same sex marriage is a states' rights issue, and that it's therefore OK for states to ban the practice: