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The truth hurts.

May 25, 2006 1 comment
I drove the same route we biked to the coffee shop today to figure out exactly how far it was. The 25 km calculation was based on Google telling me the one way trip was 10 km and me adding 2.5 km because we were taking a circuitous route. 12.5 km X 2 = 25 km.
 
Turns out it was only 7.5 km so it’s only a 15 km ride.
 
I can’t believe I suffered that much for 15 km. My ride to the fort when I biked to work in Edmonton was 14 km and I had no problem with that! Although, I did estimate that distance from a map. Maybe it was really only 5 km. 
 
I’m a wimp. 😦 
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My mom’s speech.

May 25, 2006 1 comment
My mom sent me a copy of her award-winning speech. I actually teared up when I read it. I loved it. I’ve reprinted it here, with her permission.
 
(Note: She gave it recently but wrote a good deal of it before Christmas.)
 

Let’s Aim for Tolerance

 

Shortly after midnight on October 7, 1998 a young university student entered a bar and met two young men, later she asked if she could have a ride home.  She was robbed, severely beaten and left by the side of the road.  She was discovered 18 hours later alive but unconscious.  She had a fracture from the back of the head to the front of her right ear and severe brain stem damage.  She was taken to the hospital where she remained on life support until October 12 when she died.

 

Her murderers were caught and Police found a bloody gun, her shoes and her credit cards in their truck.  They attempted to get alibis from their girlfriends.

 

At her funeral, her devastated family, had to walk through picketers and people who shouted

 

‘ She got what she asked for

   She deserved it.’

 

Are you outraged? I am.

 

This is a true story. But it was not a woman this happened to. It was a 21 year old gay man named Mathew Shepard.

 

He is described as a small, frail, gentle young man.

 

During their trials his killers used various stories to defend their actions, most notable the “gay panic defense” saying they were driven to temporary insanity by Mathew’s sexual advances.  They are serving life sentences in prison.  Local Catholic Clerics garnered much publicity by opposing the death penalty.  While in prison they both tried to justify their actions by saying that they were dictated by the Bible

 

It was Reverend Fred Phelps and his supporters who picketed the funeral.

 

Phelps has since made attempts to get a city permit to build a monument of granite 5-6 feet in height which will be engraved with the words:

 

“Mathew Shepard, Entered Hell October 12, 1998, in Defiance of God’s  warning: ‘thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind; it is an abomination’ Leviticus 18:22”

 

That’s a good Christian attitude isn’t it?

 

This is my daughter Hobbes and her partner Stella.  Hobbes is 35 years old, a Civil Engineer, living and working in Mississauga, Stella is 28, with a degree in Social work and Arts (literature).  She works for a children’s publishing company in Toronto.  They are gay.

 

There are three points important when discussing Homosexual or Lesbians 

 

Rights

Religion

Nature or Nurture

 

Due to limited time I will only address the Rights issue. The Leviticus reference alone would take me 10 minutes to refute.

 

Rights

 

The Shepard case prompted President Clinton to try to extend hate crime legislature to include gay and lesbian people as well as women, and people with disabilities.  His efforts were defeated by a Republican majority in 1999.

 

These are minorities.  It is our job as a Society to protect the rights of minorities.  It isn’t a question of what the majority wants. It is a question of doing what is right. We must do what is right.  The majority was asked if should women be should be given the right to vote? The answer was no.  A law was passed and this wrong was made right.  Women were taken off the chattel list and put on the voters list.  The South was asked to abolish slavery. A war was fought instead. The Nazi’s were defeated but not before they murdered six million Jews who they considered unequal.

 

A law was passed recently in Canada that allows for gay marriage.  The Klein government is doing its best to undermine this right.

 

Some people are opposed to the term “Marriage”. To me marriage simply means, The  joining of two things, people, flowers, clubs, anything.

 

Some people don’t understand why they need this. Here are some reasons:

 

They need inheritance rights.  If Hobbes was to die intestate her estate would come to me and her Father.  Not Stella.

 

If Hobbes was incapacitated we would be her guardians and would make all decisions for her. Not Stella.  We could bar Stella from seeing her if we wanted.

 

If Hobbes and Stella had children together the custody would be in dispute.

 

If Hobbes gave birth and died. We again would be legal guardians of the child, and could ban Stella from seeing the child, and vice versa.

 

There are tax considerations

 

There are Health Plan issues

 

Legal marriage solves all these problems.

 

Some people think that all churches will be forced to perform these weddings.  That is completely false. It is the denomination’s decision. The Gay community has adequate religious communities that are willing to provide this service to them.

 

Hobbes lives in Mississauga/Toronto because as she says “ I can be Gay here”

 

I still worry!

 

I told her I was speaking tonight on gay rights and her response … ohh be careful Mom. It’s sad when we have to be fearful for those we love, but many advocates of gay rights have been threatened.

 

I say let us be more tolerant, more supportive and more aware of the injustices we extend to this minority.

 

I want you to be appalled, outraged, and horrified by what happened to Mathew Shepard.

 

I want you to treat Gays and Lesbians without judgment and with tolerance.

 

I want you to think of Hobbes and Stella when someone is Gay-Bashing.

Categories: Family, LGBT

I’m dating the energizer bunny.

May 23, 2006 Leave a comment
The May long weekend is notorious for camping, leisure and beer. My May long weekend has introduced me to the future of my relationship, which I’m thinking will be using the U.S. Marine Corps as its model.
 
Let me elaborate:
 
Saturday morning, we went to my boxing class (1.5 hrs of athletic fun – well – maybe only 1 hr of athletic fun with 0.5 hrs of cardio thrown in to annoy me…).
 
Sunday, she asked if I wanted to go to my favourite coffee shop before our colour guard practice and I foolishly said yes. She made us bike there and back. Those of you in Ontario may remember how windy it was on Sunday. It was also uphill for about 12 km (total trip was 25 km). No coffee was worth that.
 
Monday, we narrowly escaped rollerblading due to the cold weather, but did end up playing a little basketball.
 
Next weekend, in addition to boxing and our FULL DAY colour guard practice, she signed me up for a climbing course.
 
Also, starting June 1st, I have been informed I will be expected to wake up daily at 5:30 am to haul my sorry ass to the gym for cardio and weight training.
 
To which I respond, "YES, DRILL SERGEANT!"
 
And here I thought my trip to the army surplus on wednesday was for shorts and parade boots for my flag twirling group…  but I suppose anything is better than peeling potatoes.

My mom rocks.

May 20, 2006 Leave a comment
I just got off the phone with my mom. A while back, she sent me an email that said something like:
 
Dear Gay Person,
 
I am doing a speech at my Toastmasters club. What would you like me to tell red necked Albertans about being gay?
 
Love,
Gay Person’s Mother.
 
So I discussed some thoughts with her on gay rights, Matthew Shepperd, and gender theory. She wrote a speech that went waaaay longer than her prescribed 7 minutes. Consequently she left it for a while.
 
Today she told me she gave a shortened version of the speech, touching only on the gay rights portion of the topic and she received an award for it! How awesome is that?
 
Apparently there is also a Rookie of the Year Award. She’s going for that too.
 
You never knew there were benefits from having a lesbian daughter did you? (Other than trips to the strip club…)
Categories: Family, LGBT

Ooh – close call…

May 20, 2006 Leave a comment
People think I’m lame for living in suburbia. But I’ll tell you, living in a quaint little townhouse complex with bible thumping, Halloween non-practicing, lesbian ignoring neighbours has its advantages.
 
Today would be a good example of that.
 
Apparently, I left the house this morning (at 10 am) leaving the front door wide open. While I was gone, contractors came and painted it, which was nice, but they didn’t close it. I returned at 2:30 pm to find it still open. (You may be thinking that the painters opened the door to paint it and then forgot to close it, but that’s not what happened. They don’t have a key to my door. It was definitely me who left it open.)
 
So my concern when I get home is: was anything stolen? In the front foyer were my brand new $200 (+tax) rollerblades and Debbie’s $500 rollerblades AND even worse than that – MY LABEL MAKER WAS IN FULL VIEW!
 
How tragic would that have been?
 
Let’s just say, thank goodness for living in a quaint little townhouse complex with bible thumping, Halloween non-practicing, lesbian ignoring neighbours.
 
<Aside: No one has bought either of the units adjacent to mine. They’ve been on the market for over a month… Does anyone want to live where they can leave their door open all day long without fear of someone stealing their label maker?>
Categories: Stupid Things I Do

It must have been fixed!

May 18, 2006 1 comment
In March, I entered a contest at a local scrapbooking supply store. You had to take a picture of your scrapbooking workspace and the most organized one won!
 
In their May newsletter, they announced the winners of their miscellaneous contests. I did not win. Can you believe it? That implies someone is more organized than I am and, frankly, I just don’t believe that.
Categories: Uncategorized

Quick thoughts from the airport.

May 11, 2006 2 comments
Thought 1:
 
I like the Chicago-O’Hare airport. There is this saran wrap type thing on the toilet seat that moves around on its own so you always get a clean surface to sit on without actually having to do any work to get it. Of course, that’s provided that you get NEW saran wrap when it moves and not just the same piece going in circles.
 
Thought 2:
 
I don’t trust men who wear tassled shoes or shoes with fringe.
Categories: Uncategorized