Thursday, October 23, 2008

Brush with fame

Last night(10/22) I came to Columbus to see the So You Think You Can Dance tour with my friend Erika. It was fun to see all my favorite dances from the TV show and to hang out with Erika.

Today(10/23) I went to the Wexner Center on campus to see the Andy Warhol exhibit. As I was looking around I saw a blonde girl with a black ski cap on who looked famous(she had movie star good looks). I looked at the girl next to her and I realized these were dancers from the SYTYCD dance tour! It was Kherrington, Chelsi Trail, Gev and Jessica. I was soo excited. I said I saw your guys' show last night and I thought it was great! I started shaking their hands and telling them their names and they asked me my name. I told Gev that I was from Orem and asked where Chelsie Hightower was. She didn't come, but wanted to meet up later tonight, Chelsi T. said. She was like, I'm the only Chelsi here! I said oh it's fine I'm from Orem so I wanted to give a shout out to my fellow Oremite. Then Gev asked if I grew up there and was just here for school. I said yeah I grew up there went to BYU then here for med school, I'm graduated now and am back for homecoming. I should have told them that I came here for the show which is true(as well as for Julie's birthday). Somehow it came up that they're glad they had the show last night and could spend the day here. I told them again that I loved the show and that I'd let them get back to the art show and that it was nice to meet them. There were probably some other things said but I can't remember them now. I was so nervous and star struck I was just trying to from words into sentences. I sneaked a couple of pics on my camera phone as they continued looking at the art. Kherrington came right by me again when I was reading the Andy Warhol booklet.

I wish I would have had my real camera, but I left it at my friend's house for the day while I was out. I should have gotten their autographs or gotten my photo with them with my camera! I should have asked them where they were going out tonight and invited them to Union which is where I'm headed tonight. My friend Dave knows Thayne from SYTYCD but he doesn't have his phone number anymore so I can't get a hold of him.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Email from the AMSA LGBT Listserve on Proposition 8

I think this email was very well written and since I don't think I could do a better job, I've copied the email for you all to read:

"Dear Friends,

Like many of you, I’ve been captivated by the excitement of this year’s presidential race. What some of you may not be aware of is that another measure will be put to the voters on November 4th, one of utmost importance to the nation. I am speaking of Proposition 8 in California, the proposition which will write discrimination into the California State Constitution, eliminating the right of same-sex couples to marry.

As many of you know, gay marriage became law in California on June 16, 2008, when the Supreme Court of California overturned the ban on same-sex marriage. In his ruling, California Chief Justice Ronald M. George (who happens to be Republican and first-appointed by Ronald Reagan) said:

“retaining the designation of marriage exclusively for opposite sex couples and providing only a separate and distinct designation for same-sex couples may well have the effect of perpetuating a more general premise – now emphatically rejected by this state – that gay individuals and same-sex couples are in some respects "second-class citizens" who may, under the law, be treated differently from, and less favorably than, heterosexual individuals.”

It was this same court that first overturned the ban on interracial marriage in 1948 in the Perez v Sharp case – a case the held that “marriage is a fundamental right in a free society.” At the time, that decision was labeled as an act of “judicial activism” and was overwhelmingly unpopular in public opinion polls of the day. Yet, 60 years later, the idea of a ban on interracial marriage is inconceivable
to the average American.

Many of us (myself included) have assumed a discriminatory effort to deny gays and lesbians a basic right, like Prop 8, would be easily defeated. Confident in the progressive politics of California, I’ve focused on the horse race of the presidential election.

Meanwhile, the extreme religious right has identified Prop 8 as THE MOST IMPORTANT ELECTORAL ISSUE THIS NOVEMBER. Funded largely by the Mormon Church in Utah, a massive national fundraising campaign has been organized with one purpose: to distort public perception about what Prop 8 means. The airwaves and billboards are flooded with deceiving ads about children being forced to learn about gay sex in school, churches losing their tax exempt status, and the “degradation of our society” that will ensue if Prop 8 is not passed. To date, this campaign
has raised $25 million from over 60,000 contributors – most of whom live outside of California. We are $10 million dollars behind and will surely lose this election without at least matching them dollar for dollar.

While initial polls showed the voters were likely to defeat Prop 8, the religious right’s campaign of hate is working. Public opinion polls have shown increasing support for Prop 8 (the most recent showed
47% in support, with 42% opposed), and its passage looks increasingly likely.

But the battle is still winnable.

Right now there are many resources needed to fight this battle. Equality California has challenged fair minded people to raise $1 million dollars by Sunday at midnight. Philathropist Steve Bing will match dollar for dollar every contribution up to a total of $1 million dollars. Even $20 will make a difference.

Also,volunteers are needed to phone potential voters, and you don’t have to live in California to participate. You can find out more at and

Think about it. This is the moment that will define the LGBT civil rights movement for the next 50 years. If Prop 8 is defeated, the people of the most populous state in the Union will have upheld the right of same-sex couples to marry. The inevitability of equality begins with the defeat of Prop 8.

In twenty years, how will you answer the question, “what did you do to help defeat Proposition 8?”

Please spread the word and pass this on to your fair-minded friends and neighbors."

Jason Kauffman
Bryan Hopping

Friday, October 17, 2008

Horrific BYU(Mormon church) conduct again!

This time BYU has denied giving a degree to someone who completed all of his requirements just because the Mormon church excommunicated him a few weeks before graduation(for publishing a calendar showing returned missionaries shirtless).

Read the full article here.

This is why I wasn't out while I was at BYU. I was scared of getting kicked out and not getting my degree on time. (Now I'm kind of scared of them revoking my degree anyways).

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Response to a former friend(who's Mormon) about my support of gay marriage

I thank God every day that I had the courage to be true to myself even when everything I was taught growing up told me that I was less than a person for feeling the way I did. I am so grateful that I am gay because it made me realize how wrong the Mormon church is. Had I not been true to myself I would never have met my soul mate and been happy like I am now. I can't expect you to understand because you are not in my position and you have no reason to go against the church like I did.

Same-sex marriages should be allowed for the simple reason that everyone should be treated equally. Remember when the Mormon church was persecuted? Gay people are still being persecuted to this day when we are told that we don't deserve the same rights as straight people.

As for my parents, don't feel bad for them, they are kind, loving parents who are proud of Kip(my boyfriend) and my relationship. Of course it took time for them to reach this point but through our example their feelings on the matter have changed dramatically. I hope my example can help many more people see that there are many kinds of families and Kip and mine is one of them and is just as valid as more "traditional" ones.

Monday, October 13, 2008

How to find out who donated to Vote Yes on Proposition 8

To see a list of those who have donated to "YES ON 8, A PROJECT OF CALIFORNIA RENEWAL" go to the California Secretary of State page.

Click the "contributions received" bubble under the "View Information" section. Below that there's an option to download the Excel sheet of donors, so you can then alphabetize the list(I alphabetized the list by city).

I found out my uncle and brother that live in California both donated $100. How upsetting that they would donate money. I can only guess how much time they've donated. At least I know where they stand now.

Today HRC was doing 100% matching of donations, so I made a $100 donation and that was matched, so I've now donated more than my family members donated to "Vote Yes". I do feel a little better, but there's so many people against us.

This is a much more user friendly way to find out who has donated money to Prop 8:

I found out that my uncle has donated a total of $1000 dollars in support of Proposition 8. I can't compete with that kind of money.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Letter from the Obama campaign on GLBT issues

I'll admit I was offended/saddened by the segment on gay marriage in the VP debate. But I think this is a good time to share a message that I received from the Obama campaign when I asked them to share Obama's views on GLBT issues.

"Dear Friend,

Thank you for contacting Senator Barack Obama and Obama for America with your thoughts on LGBT rights. We appreciate hearing from you.

Senator Obama supports economic, social, and legal rights for gays and lesbians. He supports full civil unions, expanding hate crimes statutes, fighting discrimination at work and in housing and other places of public accommodation, and wants to increase adoption rights. He opposes any Constitutional ban on gay marriage, opposes the Defense of Marriage Act, and opposes the current “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on gays in the military, which weakens us in a time of global challenges.

Barack is a global leader in the fight against AIDS. He traveled to Kenya and took a public HIV test to encourage testing and reduce the stigma of the disease. In late 2006, Barack Obama worked to reauthorize the Ryan White CARE Act, one of the largest sources of federal funds for primary health care and support services for patients with HIV/AIDS.

Senator Obama has consistently supported LGBT rights, and will continue to work for an open, tolerant society where people of all sexual orientations are protected and their contributions are valued. Thank you again for writing.


Obama for America

Paid for by Obama for America"

So hopefully this cheers you all up as it does me, that under Obama there will be far more equality than under McCain.