Gays face discrimination

Posted: Sunday, October 06, 2002

There is a definite need for stronger communication, diplomacy, and understanding between Christians, advocates of the Day of Silence, teachers and generally people who write letters to the Empire.

Related Story:

Teacher role in Day of Silence questioned

There is no doubt that there is open discrimination of Christians and their views. There is no doubt that the church has struggled with sharing love of God and the Bible in government and schools. There is no doubt about this.

However, I believe that the students who are working on the Day of Silence are not forcing their views onto anyone. Gays and lesbians are some of the most discriminated-against people in this town, among Natives, Filipinos, other minorities, and yes, church people and whites.

I don't believe people get yelled at on the street with "Bible Thumper!" like other people get yelled at as "Fag!" or "Drunk Native!" I apologize greatly for offending anyone for bringing up those harsh terms, but unfortunately it is a reality of discrimination in our town.

One thing I'm concerned about with this letter is that by supporting people for Day of Silence, people would automatically question the type of person I am. I am heterosexual, and comfortable with my sexuality, although I'd wish no one really cared about that. It's my concern that people even concern themselves, and act discriminatory, to a person merely for their sexuality. All the people who support the Day of Silence are merely supporting gays and lesbians to live their lives without harassment.

Whether it is a question of what the Bible says is right or wrong, or whether people believe a gay person chooses his sexuality or not, I believe acting with hate towards anyone is a problem, a problem that I hope the Bible or God does not teach. I hope that I am not blasphemous, or discriminatory, in my words.

Ishmael C. Hope

Juneau



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