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For Matthew Shepard and countless others, the work to erase hate continues

Sunday, October 12, 2014
Matthew Shepard, in a family photo carried in his father’s wallet.
Sixteen years ago, on the night of October 6, 1998, two men lured Matthew Shepard, a 21-year old college freshman at the University of Wyoming, from a bar in Laramie. He was kidnapped, robbed, brutally beaten, tied to a fence and left die on the cold Wyoming prairie. Matthew was discovered 18 hours later, and for the next five days, the world held vigil while Matthew lay in a coma in a hospital in Colorado. And on this day in 1998, at 12:53 a.m., Matthew died — his family by his side.

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Coming Out – Yes, it still does matter

Saturday, October 11, 2014
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I didn’t come out until I was 50. In those 50 years I lied, cheated on a husband, denied who I was and tried desperately to be the daughter, sister, wife, cousin, friend that I was expected to be. It didn’t work – it never works. And those who believe that to be gay is a choice we make, well, they will never, ever understand the struggle that takes place within most of our souls....

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The memory and meaning of Matthew Shepard, 16 years later

Monday, October 6, 2014
Matt
On October 7, 1998, Aaron Kreifels was riding his bike through a field in Wyoming. He wasn’t expecting that day to be different from any other beautiful sunny afternoon in the vast plains surrounding Laramie, but that day would change many lives. Aaron spotted what he initially thought was a scarecrow next to a fence. Then he noticed a glisten of blood...

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A letter to the ‘Christian’ mom wishing death for her disabled lesbian daughter

Sunday, October 5, 2014
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Public disapproval over who could marry whom was an issue for Kelly’s family early on. Her father is black, and her mother is white. Kelly and her brother were bullied frequently in the small town in Alabama. They were the only mixed race kids in town. Kelly was quiet and shy and kept to herself. When she was 16, Kelly found a name for the identity that had been growing within her: lesbian....

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Imagine thinking that all it takes to eradicate love is to say, ‘I’m gay.’

Saturday, September 27, 2014
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It is very difficult to accurately describe the terror, trepidation and insecurity that accompanies a “coming out” moment. Especially if that “moment” is to a parent. The only way I can describe it is: Imagine all the things your parents love about you, all the things they admire and all the things they are proud of when they talk about you to their friends. And imagine feeling that there are two words you might say that could destroy all of that.

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Soldier of Change: From the closet to the forefront of the gay rights movement

Saturday, September 27, 2014
Stephen Snyder-Hill
I really hated my life. I hated living like I was in prison. It was hurting my relationship. And it was all so fucking stupid. Was this a “special privilege”? Was this about sex? I was not asking to have sex in the military. If given the chance of a rebuttal after Mr. Santorum answered my question with his “sex has no place in the military” and “gay people want special privileges” rhetoric, I would have told him that story.

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A letter to the ‘Christian’ grandmother advocating homophobic books for teens

Saturday, September 20, 2014
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Laurie Higgins is a Christian grandmother with a limited professional background (according to her bio). She has worked as “cultural analyst” for The Illinois “Family” Institute for six years, and before that was employed in the “writing center” for a high school. I am not exactly sure what the job qualifications are to be a “cultural analyst” but whatever they are, they have not won Ms. Higgins many friends...

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Religious oppression and abuse still pervasive in the LGBTQ South

Sunday, September 14, 2014
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Those of us living in the South are very aware of the multi-generational religious oppression and abuse that many LGBTQ people face coming from our Christian families, churches, and communities. For many LGBTQ people living here our hopes, dreams, and fears are the product of generations of religious traditions and expectations. We know that the religious oppression ...

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A dad’s surprising response to his gay son’s heart wrenching ‘coming out’

Saturday, September 13, 2014
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My name is James Alexander. I’m 20 years old and reside in a conservative area of Texas where I was born and raised. Throughout my childhood I could tell that I was different. I was quiet, unsure of myself, socially anxious at most times. Before I even connected the word “gay” with two men liking each other, the other kids already had made it part of their vocabulary and readily let me know that I was.

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The NFL is still not ready for an openly gay player

Friday, September 5, 2014
Dallas Cowboys practice squad player defensive end Michael Sam smiles as he speaks to reporters after team practice at the team's headquarters Wednesday, Sept. 3, 2014, in Irving, Texas.
If history is any guide, Michael Sam should be getting ready for his first NFL game. Instead, he's stuck on the practice squad with the Dallas Cowboys. The league, it would seem, isn't quite ready for its first openly gay player. We're not talking about his teammates, either. There was never any indication that Sam was a distraction in the St. Louis locker room, as so many had predicted...

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