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    After Anti-Gay Activists Donate $842,387 To Pizzeria, Three LGBT Youth Orgs Ask For Help

    Three worthwhile organizations that work to help LGBT youth are asking for a bit of support in the wake of a nearly million-dollar fundraiser that helped an anti-gay marriage Indiana pizzeria.

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    Last week news of Indiana's anti-gay "religious freedom" law consumed the nation, and a small town pizzeria whose owners shut down after announcing support for the discriminatory legislation walked away with $842,387 in proceeds donated by anti-gay conservatives whipped into a homophobic frenzy by Rush Limbaugh.

    That GoFundMe campaign for Memories Pizza was started by a Glenn Beck Internet TV host, but it was Limbaugh's direction to donate that escalated the funds to almost one million dollars.

    "Just ram it down these people's throats," Limbaugh urged. 

    "These people" being the LGBT community. Yes, Limbaugh told his listeners that it "takes a concerted effort rooted in lies and fraud and deceit sponsored by 10 people paid for by George Soros and Media Matters to gin something like" the attacks on Memories Pizza, "and to make you get dispirited and depressed, and think that you are vastly overwhelmed and outnumbered. You are not. We're talking about a minority that's not even 5% of the population here."

    And donate in the name of hate they did. 

    But now, in the wake of all that, three worthwhile groups who work with LGBT youth are asking for a bit of help, a bit of the (pizza?) pie, if you can excuse the pun.

    LGBT activist Scott Wooledge has been advocating for Cyndi Lauper's True Colors Fund. He created the Pizza 4 Equality campaign to help.

    There is much disgust and consternation in the LGBT community over a viral fundraiser effort, that has as of this writing, earned $842,387. Many have lamented, "If only our cause could raise that much money that fast." I say, yes, we can.

    So I looked and saw that Cyndi Lauper's True Colors Fund has set April 29 as the first national #40toNoneDay to end #LGBT youth homelessness! And I thought, would it not be totally awesome if we equality supporters (and pizza lovers) could match that #MemoriesPizza  "charity" by April 29?  Can we match their amount and help homeless youth get off the street, learn life skills and get an education and jobs?

    Dan Savage agrees:

    You can donate via their GoFundMe page.

    If you're feeling like you want to counter the anti-gay hate in Indiana directly, consider the Indiana Youth Group. They've started a GoFundMe campaign in response to the Memories Pizza campaign too.

    "IYG has been around since 1987 providing safe spaces and support for LGBT youth," their GoFundMe page reads. "They were founded 'in response to the dismal suicide, homeless, and dropout rates of self-identified gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth in Indianapolis.'"

    You can check out their webpage and Facebook page.

    And last but not least, the good folks at Equality House and Planting Peace have an awesome challenge.

    In an email they sent NCRM, they explain:

    "In the spirit of Easter a donor has come forward and said he will give 100 rooms to LGBTQ youth and families if we hit our goal of raising $100,000 in our virtual pizza party that is countering the anti-gay pizza story."

    That's a fantastic gift!

    You remember Equality House is the rainbow painted house that sits directly across the street from the Westboro Baptist Church, as a daily reminder for them.

    On their Facebook page, they write:

    For a fraction of the money they raised for hate, you can literally change the lives of hundreds of our LGBTQ family facing homelessness. Let’s show the world that together, we can affect true positive change for a very worthy cause.

    You can contribute via their CrowdRise fundraising campaign page.

    If you can, give a little, or a lot. If you can't, why not share this message with folks you know? Let's start the week off on a good note and help make a difference for kids who really need our help!

     

    Image by torbakhopper via Flickr and a CC license

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