We need our allies to step up to the mic and denounce the violence and animosity directed at us and some people did just that,
Opinion: Republican legislation targets vulnerable LGBTQ+ Iowans
To advance society, communities need an opportunity to engage in issues openly, without fear of reprisal or coercion. These proposals actively shut down that engagement.
By Andrea Frantz
January 26, 2023
This essay is also signed by Storm Lake LGBTQ+ advocates and community members Wind Goodfriend, Meg McKeon, Gus Raymond, Joel Berrien Jr., the Rev. Melanie Hauser, Willa J. Casstevens, Maggie Martinez
In 2009, Iowa became just the third state in the nation to recognize gay marriage as a legal right according to its state Supreme Court decision Varnum v. Brien. So, we Iowans not only can say “gay,” but most of us understand that doing so makes us stronger as a community.
Simply put, words matter.
They determine the ways in which we can connect with others and clearly indicate where we diverge. Such awareness ensures our ability to make decisions that impact our individual health, safety, and engagement with the broader world.
Conversely, for government to either silence speech or compel it is not only unconstitutional, but also undermines the very fabric of American society. Unfortunately, as history has long shown us, governments seem unable to resist trying. Why? Because if successful, the silencers remain in power.
It should come as no surprise that Republican Iowa legislators, emboldened by midterm wins and GOP Gov. Kim Reynolds’ rising national star, feel they have a blank check to focus their agenda on pandering to the extreme element of the conservative base by targeting LGBTQ+ Iowans.
Under the cynical guise of defending “parental rights,” Iowa legislators are attempting to follow the lead of Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law enacted in March 2022 that prohibits “classroom discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity” in the state’s public schools. Those conservative coattails look like Iowa House File 7, House File 8, and House File 9 respectively.
So what does the bill do?
The bills limits free speech and bans black history, and LGBTQ issues from schools and the new bills limit what books a school libraries can have!
The bills imposes like a Connecticut bill that adds onus reporting requirements for school curricula in those topics and is vaguely defined.
The problem hinges on what constitutes “instruction.” No teacher sets out to offer instruction in how to be or become a member of the LGBTQ+ community. No one. This is not about indoctrination. It is about inclusion. If a child with two same-sex parents has the opportunity to read a book about a family with same-sex parents, it bolsters that child’s sense that they are not alone. Seeing oneself in this light can be life-affirming. According to a survey released in 2022 by The Trevor Project, “nearly half of all LGBTQ+ youth seriously considered attempting suicide in the past year.” Ultimately, marginalized youth are at higher risk for depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts when they are stigmatized or ostracized by the broader community. Active silencing or the erasure of the LGBTQ+ perspective from community conversation undermines a child’s ability to see themselves as a valued member in that community. Such isolation can have deadly consequences and strengthens existing social divisions that foster bullying and other abuses.
If government silencing to perpetuate systemic inequity can be understood as a violation of our democratic values, it’s not hard to look at compelled speech as its evil twin equivalent. House File 9 sets out to do just that. The bill’s third point reads: “Each school district is prohibited from … willfully withholding information … or knowingly giving false information to, the parent or guardian of a student regarding the student’s gender identity or intention to transition …” In essence, legislators will require teachers to tell parents if they know or suspect that their child is wrestling with gender identity issues.
The Republicans only about the Second Amendment and ignore the rest of the Constitution, the First Amendment only gets in their way to banning topics they bury their heads in the sand over.
If it causes students to do self-harm because they feel helpless, because they feel dirty. Hey that’s one less gay child or one Black student to worry about. The Republicans don’t care as long as it gets them votes and political donations.
Update on last's night Drag Bingo:
People were worried over a Drag Show at a church in Madison Connecticut because a right-wing church was creating a brouhaha over the fundraiser for travel to Appalachia and repair homes in poor communities that happened last night. Queer News reported...
FABULOUS update on Drag Queen Bingo. The line was around the building and they had to turn people away! We got in! But we are sitting at the stage.
Oh yeah the “protesters” were 5 folks with one sign. Love wins.
The event was attended by a few legislators unlike Iowa.
However, that wasn’t the only thing that got the conservatives in a tizzy (You got to love this!), Queer News goes on to report… Wait for it! A S&M dinner!
Calo excitedly called Bingo! himself after finding a poster for an event one of the drag queens once performed at — an S&M dinner in support of a Mr Bear competition.
But then someone pointed out S&M stood for Spaghetti & Meatballs. Poor love. The post suddenly disappeared.
Talk about having spaghetti on your face!
And the pastor who did all the “Sinful” “Grooming the kids” “Child abuse” and “viral Anti-Christ” well he has a checkered past,
But it now turns out, someone in this story did once pose as a woman for nefarious and illegal purposes.
Bingo! You guessed it. Pastor Mike Calo, or ‘Mary’ as he once called himself.
Mike Calo is a convicted swindler. The year before he set up Shoreline Church, a court convicted him of inventing a fictitious business to defraud another businessman. When he wished to avoid contact with his victim, Calo posed as a secretary called Mary who emailed to say her boss was in an area of Central America with poor communication.
Prior to that scam, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission ordered Calo to stop publishing misleading newsletters in which he claimed to offer subscribers up to 373% returns.
On his church's Facebook page...
January 21, 2023 4:09PM
What kind of parent would willing bring their children to an event filled with men, dressed and strutting around like women? And, what type of man would want to dress and try and win the approval of kids? This is evil in one of its worst forms and must be stopped!
This is child ABUSE and any parent attending an event with their children should be investigated.
Then we have an organization, posing as a "Church" allowing such vial and anti-Christ activites within the walls of its building? What type of religious leadership is this?
These "so-called" leaders are nothing but wolves in sheeps clothing twisting the Lords words and commandments. They willingly impose their 11th commandmant of "thou shalt be nice and accepting" while all the while violating the 10 commandments and forgetting that not only is the God of the Bible, Jehovah God, love, but He is also Righteous, Just and Holy.
Repent and turn your hearts back to God before its too late!
In another Facebook post…
The sad part of all this is people are not even willing to be intellectually honest, forget about the spiritual aspects for a moment.
Why would men dressing as women be acceptable to anyone? Why would these “men” want to flaunt this obvious abnormal behavior for free? If not to incite and brainwash, then why?
Why try to make your personal behaviors a norm for society?
If feminine behavior is exciting to a male, thats a personal choice and decision. We have no right to make any judgment on your personal life. However, the moment you try and change society and social behaviors to fit your personal choices then we have an issue. Hence this is unacceptable. Being a “church” offering a stage for such unnatural behaviors is a reproach to Christianity and the person of Christ.
It is never love to embrace a falsehood or an untruth. Christian love must always reflect truth and righteousness or it is NOT love
Yes, he may have reformed and he may be using the church as a different scam. Who knows?
So anyway, it was a none event with only 5 protesters showing up.
"If it causes students to do self-harm because they feel helpless, because they feel dirty. Hey that’s one less gay child or one Black student to worry about. The Republicans don’t care as long as it gets them votes and political donations."ReplyDelete
I say this a lot. These monsters don't really care if these kids whither in the closet, flee the State, or resort to suicide. Any and all are acceptable to them, the harm is the point.