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View Diary: Melissa Etheridge on Peace and Unity (35 comments)

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  •  For Peace and Unity, (16+ / 0-)

    "Government is the entertainment division of the military industrial complex." --The late Frank Zappa

    by Badabing on Mon Dec 22, 2008 at 11:22:01 PM PST

    •  Thank you badabing. (4+ / 0-)

      This diary is a tribute to your love for your brother, as well. Be proud of that, and of him.

      Thank you.

    •  I appreciate your sentiments (13+ / 0-)

      and I'm sorry about your brother.
      I'm 55, have been out for 37 years, and lost two partners, in addition to nearly every gay friend I had in the 80s to HIV/AIDS.
      There would have been many more lost had a courageous, frequently obnoxious, and very loud, impatient group known as ACT-UP followed your dictum and put their rage aside.

      •  ACT UP - exactly (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KathleenM1, ExStr8, sgary, andrewj54, jayden

        Meet the New Boss - same as the Old Boss - the Who

        by tiponeill on Mon Dec 22, 2008 at 11:43:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  right on nt (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KathleenM1, ExStr8, sgary, jayden

        It would be the first principle of sane kindness that all forms of sacrifice would be avoided, if at all possible."--Adam Phillips

        by andrewj54 on Mon Dec 22, 2008 at 11:54:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Absolutely...For Peace, They Must Agree... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KathleenM1, ExStr8, sgary, andrewj54

        Peace? There will be peace when they accept my humanity, when they leave me and my friends alone, when they stop trying to prostilize me, when they keep their religious beliefs to themselves and leave me alone.  When they agree that I have the right to live without governmental and religious discrimination.

        You see...there cannot be peace.  It is not just that they think they are right, but they receive joy in tormenting gays--actually making our lives worse.

        "The people have only as much liberty as they have the intelligence to want and the courage to take." - Emma Goldman

        by jvackert on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 12:13:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  sgary. Human nature is driven by a desire (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sgary, Badabing

        to be accepted and to get along. Indeed, that is at the very crux of the GLBT movement.

        In the 1980s my first response to Larry Kramer was to calm down, to avoid confrontation, and to not draw attention to the AIDS epidemic as it was helping to foster hatred toward and fear of the gay community.

        Like you, I'm in my 50s. Having grown up in the south I'd very much come to fear the backlash.

        By the 1980s I was comfortably ensconced in Manhattan and shared a dual residence in San Francisco, two of the most secure communities for the GLBT community. AIDS, however, threatened that security even in those incredible centers of GLBT culture. My first signal was when my dentist in Manhattan informed me that he was dropping me and my significant other as patients because he was afraid of being infected.

        My second was the reaction of many gay and straight friends who suddenly began to recoil from any type of physical intimacy, avoiding a simple hug or the cursory kiss on the cheek, uncertain of the risk.

        However, niceties quickly gave way to anger and advocacy when my significant other was diagnosed with AIDS and we were confronted with our impotency in combating the disease and securing support for AIDS research, care and treatment.

        I quickly embraced Larry Kramer and ACT-UP, recognizing that unless we yelled from the rooftops, pushed back against the inertia of the fearful and recalcitrant medical and political bureaucracies, and embarrassed friends, neighbors, co-workers and relatives for their lack of compassion and concern, my entire generation of gay men would be lost.

        As it was, from 1985 through 1991 I crossed out over sixty names in my address book and spread my significant other's ashes on a black beach we'd frequented in the Marin Headlands. This past year I lost two more friends to the disease, but I'm grateful that their lives had been extended largely due to the progress fostered by the activism of the gay community.

        Yet I'm still sensitive to people's desire for acceptance and to get along and avoid conflict. It's such a difficult balance to strike, particularly when the issues and the fight are so personal.

        "If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich." JFK - January 20, 1961

        by rontun on Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 01:37:23 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks, Rontun. (0+ / 0-)

          I escaped our partners and friends fates and am still here 24+ years later, thanks, in no small part, to the noisemakers.
          But I live optimistically with their legacy and disease.
          I think I was initially mortified by them too.

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