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Same-Sex Marriage: How Allowing Gays To Marry Could Rescue California

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How allowing gays to marry in California could rescue a
state teetering on the brink of bankruptcy. Guest author Terry Angel Mason explains.

“Today, you would think that because I am an African-American, that I would have awakened with a new zest for living, a belief that all things are possible and a renewed hope in America, the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave. But instead, I felt a chilling numbness emotionally very similar to the kind of feeling that I experience when someone close to me in my family has just died!”

These were the words penned in my Pulitzer-nominated book, “Love Won’t Let Me Be Silent,” after Proposition 8 passed in California, amid the euphoria and jubilation of electing America’s first African-American President. At that time my feelings were very conflicted because there was a part of me that was overjoyed because Barack Obama had been elected. Conversely, another part of me was in complete despair because of the bigotry and hatred that would later take on the form of denying same-gender-loving people the right to adopt children in other states and/or the right to wed the person of their choosing; in addition to the countless suicides, abuse and extreme acts of violence committed against LGBT community – all the direct result from the implementation of this hideous Bill!

Prior to the passing of Proposition 8 (aka Prop. 8), African-American clergy, Catholics, Evangelicals, Mormons and some non-denominational Christians urged their parishioners to vote “YES” on Prop. 8, ignoring and completely disregarding the fact that thousands of LGBT people attend their churches and participate in every aspect of ministry, pay their tithes, and have an undying devotion to the ministry. Parishioners were told, “We must do everything we can to preserve the Institution of marriage.” Oh, if they would have only acted earlier with the same fervor years ago, perhaps heterosexual Christians would not lead the country in divorces and separations — long before Prop. 8, gay marriage, civil unions, or domestic partnerships were ever established.

Yes, you heard me right! I was amazed to discover that born-again Christians are more likely than others to experience a divorce. These statistics have been the case for quite some time. Even more disturbing, perhaps is that when these divorcees publicly announce their divorce, many of them are rejected by their community of faith rather than provided with support and healing. It is apparent that many Christians are quick to criticize gay unions, having forgotten to remove the beam from their own eye before trying to get the speck out of their brother’s eye (Matthew 7:5). And what of the Bishops, whose stories garner constant media attention in the Black churches throughout our great country? The same Bishops, who bash from the pulpit, are on their third and fourth marriage, cleverly cover up sex and drug scandals, and violently abuse their wives. The media is constantly exposing the fact that more and more of these same Bishops are committing adultery and fathering illegitimate children with women in their congregations, other than their spouses. And let’s not forget to mention the ones who are on the downlow (meaning they are closeted gays) who cheat with other men!

What is even more alarming is that HIV/AIDS and poverty in the African American and Hispanic Communities is staggering! Furthermore, many, if not most of these same Pastors, Bishops, Priests and ministers who encouraged their parishioners to vote “Yes” on Prop 8, don’t even have a food pantry for their members, senior care programs, effective HIV/AIDS outreach programs and sadly, no prison ministry rehabilitation program; a tragic oversight, especially since there are over 170,000 inmates in the California penal system (many of whom are Black and Hispanic). Yet, they thought nothing of spending over 60 million dollars to oppose same-sex unions, money that they could have and should have used to fund much needed programs like these! Moreover, another glaring example of the Church’s misdirected priorities, are the many cases of their parishioners being evicted out of their apartments and homes, unable to procure financial support from their home churches. The same home church that will justify and miraculously produce money to fight Marriage Equality issues like Prop 8!

One reason I always cringe when I hear Pastors bash the gay community from the pulpit is because little do they realize, had it not been for the gay community, little or nothing would have been done to combat the AIDS virus, and the death toll would have been even more catastrophic. It should also be noted that because the African-American and Hispanic American heterosexual community is disproportionately affected by the pandemic, subsequently, their faith community offers little to no services. As a result of working hand-in-hand with many AIDS organizations, I can attest to the fact that thousands of heterosexual males and females frequently access HIV treatment and Case Management services provided by the gay community — whom by the way attend these same churches. I am extremely grateful to the gay community for responding so compassionately and effectively to those suffering from the virus because the majority of services and medications that are offered today is the direct result of their resolute response. The LGBT community continues to effectively and compassionately minister to the needs of people from all walks of life; doing what many Evangelical Christians have failed to do, even today!

As a child, I was taught to believe that the Constitution created by our founding fathers would always protect the rights of the people. Even if, humanity somehow lost its way in the muck, mire and rhetoric of misguided souls and redneck politicians, I believed that somehow, truth and justice would prevail and win out in the end because after all, did we not elect an African-American President? Isn’t that proof? I know that such a belief to some may seem naïve. Still, deep down inside, I keep hearing the chant of our forefathers boldly declaring to my heart and consciousness these empowering words that I refuse to cast aside: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men (and women) are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness . . .”

These words became a reality on June 24, 2011, for the people of New York when their State Senate approved marriage equality legislation, despite of the disgraceful passing of Proposition 8 in California three years earlier. All the despair I felt back in 2008 when Prop. 8 passed was a stark contrast to the immense joy that I experienced yesterday along with the multitudes from every race and gender, who exuberantly celebrated in the streets of New York after such a long awaited victory. But all the euphoria wore off when I awakened this morning, and was slapped in the face by the reality that I still lived in California. I wiped the sleep out of my eyes, showered, got dressed and boarded a train headed to luncheon that a circle at my church was giving for the fathers and mothers in our congregation.

Even though I have been blessed financially and have garnered international attention and media acclaim as an author, I have chosen not to move out of my present neighborhood. I like the interaction with the people I meet and it keeps me in touch with my community and aware of the things that people living in my neighborhood experience in their day-to-day struggles to survive. It also allows me to experience firsthand what is like to be black, gay and Christian, all of which I am very proud of!

Because I am well known in my community, (though many adamantly disapprove of my sexual orientation and interpretation of scripture), it affords me the opportunity to dialogue with ministers, local politicians, and with the movers and shakers in my community and I am often able to effect change because I live among them. Admittedly, it isn’t easy and I often become discouraged because of their close-mindedness and deep seated homophobia and think of retreating to a more upscale community where same-gender-loving people are more accepted and celebrated, but I just can’t do it! I can’t do it because of the lingering homophobic plague stalking my community that endangers the lives of children and youth I see going to and fro on a day-to-day basis. I cannot tell you how many times I have had to intervene to stop fights and bullying on buses and trains (one of the primary reasons I use public transportation). I realize that this is dangerous and often places me in great jeopardy, but I refuse to sit idly by and let another innocent child or young adult be abused by a hateful, ignorant person, simply because they are gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender! The reality is that in these situations, few people are willing to come to the aid of our children, even if they feel the bullying or abuse is wrong or inappropriate and this saddens me – but I refuse to be one of those people!!!

What is perhaps more devastating about the passing of Prop. 8 is not only the negative social effect it has had on our community, but also the devastating financial affect it has also generated because we missed the tremendous window of opportunity for financial gain and the potential to create many much needed new jobs. You see my brothers and sisters, prejudice and intolerance is unfortunately a double edged sword because it tragically eliminated the possibility of California bringing in an estimated 385 million dollars of revenue over a ten year period, if same-gender-loving people had been allowed to marry. Statistically speaking, married people often accumulate more wealth and have more to spend on property and consumer goods, which bolsters tax revenue.

Thank God that in New York, Governor Cuomo had the wisdom and good sense to see the tremendous economic potential and opportunity that his state had to improve its economy. He wisely acted by seizing this opportunity to sign the Bill into Law only hours after it had been passed. It was a good thing that he did, because wedding plans are likely to generate an estimated $284 million dollars to the state’s economy, according to a report by the Independent Democratic Conference.

In the wake of New York’s good fortune, California now teeters or the brink of bankruptcy, unable to balance its budget, barely even able to keep the doors of its schools and higher learning institutions opened, due to mismanagement of funds and overspending, and sadly, because of missed opportunities. Even though Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn overturned Prop 8, the matter is still not resolved because the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has been sitting on the matter. I believe the delay is due to Prop. 8 being a very contentious issue and the Commissioners themselves are conservatives and fear the wrath of right wing conservatives that could result should they overturn the proposition. In the meantime, California’s economy is in critical condition and on financial life support! Moreover, it is in desperate need of an economic boost. Many single people in the LGBT community are still being unfairly denied the right to marry the person they love and receive their entitled constitutional and federal benefits. Perhaps, the courageous move on the part of New York and Washington, D.C. lawmakers will embolden them and motivate them to do what they already know in their hearts is the right thing to do and overturn Prop. 8. Their courageous intervention would rescue our failing economy which is currently in desire straits and preserve the integrity and promise of our Constitution by courageously granting equal rights to same-gender-loving people – accomplishing the very objective that we elected them to do!

 

Terry Angel Mason is an international author and Civil Rights Activist who champions Civil Rights for same-gender loving people here and all over the world. His gifted and exceptional use of prose and poetry has given him a unique platform in which he passionately utilizes to brilliantly shine the light of justice onto the dark and hidden areas of sexual oppression and discrimination. His first breakthrough book, “Love Won’t Let Me Be Silent” propelled him to world-wide recognition, touching the hearts and minds of thousands of men and women, inspiring them to stand up for their God given rights. What makes Angel Mason so distinctive and effective as an activist is that he blends an innate zeal for justice with a spiritual insight molded and tempered by love. His literary voice is never strident nor shrill, but still emotionally powerful and compelling! Angel Mason clearly frames and illuminates the critical issues that impact the lives of same-gender loving people everywhere.

Follow Terry Angel Mason on Twitter.

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News

In Angry Letter McCarthy Warns Thompson J6 Docs ‘Do Not Belong to You’ – After Defending Trump Taking Classified Info

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House Minority Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy in an angry letter to Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) warned the Chairman of the U.S. House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack that his role will end on January 3 and it is “imperative that all information collected be preserved.” The California Republican congressman had a dramatically different position on Donald Trump‘s unlawful retention of well over ten thousand items from the White House, including at least 300 documents with classified markings, including some classified at the highest levels.

McCarthy, who is running to be Speaker of the House but is facing strong opposition from some of the GOP caucus, nevertheless is acting as if he will wield the gavel.

His letter, angry and accusatory in tone, also strongly suggests Republicans will hold their own hearings on the January 6 attack on the Capitol and on democracy, but with a vastly different focus.

“The American people chose Republicans to lead the 118th Congress,” McCarthy’s letter begins. “On January 3, 2023, your work as Chairman of the Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol will come to an end,” McCarthy told Thompson in his letter, which was reported on by CBS News.

READ MORE: Trump Allies So Shaken by His White Supremacist Dinner a Top Campaign Aide Will Now ‘Be Present With Him at All Times’

“For those reasons, I remind you and your staff on the Committee to preserve all records collected and transcripts of testimony taken during your investigation in accordance with House Rule VII. As the Chairman, regardless of who may be directing the work of the Committee, you are responsible for the work done by its members and staff.”

Some have suggested that Thompson could transfer some or all of the Committee’s work product – all transcripts and other evidence – to the Senate.

McCarthy continued with his angry attack.

“It is clear based on recent news reports that even your own members and staff of the Committee have no visibility into the totality of the investigation. Some reports suggest that entire swaths of findings will be left out of the Committee’s final report. You have spent a year and a half and millions of taxpayers’ dollars conducting this investigation.”

House Republicans, including McCarthy, spent million dollars on six Benghazi investigations, the last one of which McCarthy admitted was designed to harm former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s presidential aspirations.

“Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping,” McCarthy bragged in 2015.

Unlike his defense of ex-president Donald Trump unlawfully removing and retaining at Mar-a-Lago approximately 13,000 items belonging to the National Archives from the White House, McCarthy warned Thompson the Committee’s work does not belong to the Chairman.

“It is imperative that all information collected be preserved not just for institutional prerogatives but for transparency to the American people,” McCarthy wrote. “The official Congressional Records do not belong to you or any member, but to the American people, and they are owed all of the information you gathered – not merely the information that comports with your political agenda.”

That’s actually false.

READ MORE: Charlie Kirk, Purveyor of ‘Rigged’ Election Lie, Complains GOP Lost ‘Because a Lot of People Do Not Trust the System’

The Committee has undoubtedly uncovered government secrets, including national security information, classified information, and information, for example, the Secret Service needs to keep secret to allow it to continue to secure its protectees. It also has entered into agreements with witnesses that prevent it from releasing those documents, transcripts, and other evidence to the public.

Politico’s senior legal affairs reporter Kyle Cheney says, “Kevin McCarthy’s letter demanding that the Jan. 6 committee preserve its records is mostly nonsense because the committee is planning to release all but a few of its transcripts.”

McCarthy continued, warning: “Although your Committee’s public hearings did not focus on why the Capitol complex was not secure on January 6, 2021, the Republican majority in the 118th Congress will hold hearings that do so.”

He then served up what some might say is a threat.

“The American people have a right to know that the allegations you have made are supported by the facts and to be able to view the transcripts with an eye toward encouraged enforcement of 18 USC 1001.”

18 U.S. Code § 1001 is the federal statute that makes it a crime to knowingly make false statements.

McCarthy had a very different take when the U.S. Dept. of Justice executed a legal search warrant of Donald Trump’s Florida residence and resort, Mar-a-Lago, to retrieve government-owned materials, including classified documents.

“Joe Biden and the politicized Dept. of Justice launched a raid on the home of his top political rival, Donald Trump,” McCarthy said on Sept. 1. “That is an assault on democracy.”

Watch the videos above or at this link.

 

 

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BREAKING NEWS

Treasury Dept. Finally Hands Over Six Years of Trump’s Tax Returns to Powerful House Committee

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The U.S. Dept. of the Treasury has finally handed over six years of Donald Trump’s tax returns, after the U.S, Supreme Court denied the ex-president’s request to block the document transfer. The powerful House Ways and Means Committee is now in receipt of all six years, according to a Wednesday afternoon report from CNN.

The returns are primarily from Trump’s time as president.

The Committee will need to work quickly, as Republicans will take over the House majority early next year, and the current Chairman, Richard Neal, will no longer serve in that role.

Republicans are expected to end any investigations into Donald Trump, including his tax returns, as they begin investigations into top GOP priorities: Hunter Biden’s laptop, the origin of the novel COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, and President Joe Biden’s withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan.

READ MORE: Trump Allies So Shaken by His White Supremacist Dinner a Top Campaign Aide Will Now ‘Be Present With Him at All Times’

This is a breaking news and developing story. 

Image via Shutterstock

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News

Trump Allies So Shaken by His White Supremacist Dinner a Top Campaign Aide Will Now ‘Be Present With Him at All Times’

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Top allies of Donald Trump were so disturbed by his decision to have dinner with white supremacist Nick Fuentes last week that the ex-president and 2024 GOP candidate will now have a handler with him around the clock.

The Associated Press also reports the campaign has also changed the protocols for visitors and will start to vet guests who come to see Trump, after the few procedures in place allowed antisemite Kanye West to bring along three guests.

“In an acknowledgment of the severity of the backlash and an effort to prevent a repeat, Trump’s campaign is putting new protocols in place to ensure that those who meet with him are approved and fully vetted, according to people familiar with the plans who requested anonymity to share internal strategy,” the AP adds, revealing the campaign apparently does not trust the 76-year old ex-president to make decisions about who he should or should not spend time with.

The AP does not define “fully vetted,” but importantly the Trump White House had such a horrific track record of vetting nominees even GOP Senators were frustrated.

“The changes will include expediting a system, borrowed from Trump’s White House, in which a senior campaign official will be present with him at all times, according to one of the people,” the AP adds, revealing what appears to be a previously unknown fact.

READ MORE: RNC Taps Right Wing Extremists to Head Group Designed to Expand GOP Appeal in Wake of Midterm Losses

The lax security at Mar-a-Lago was in place when Trump was storing 300 documents with various classified markings, including documents with top secret information and a set with the highest level of classification.

In yet another stunning revelation the AP reports that the antisemitic Holocaust “denier” and white supremacist Fuentes “arrived by car with Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West, and was waved into the club by security, even though only Ye had been on the security list, according to one of the people present and others briefed on the events.”

The AP also reports that “Fuentes apparently did not show his ID and the car’s driver, a frequent guest at the club, got in using a credit card after misplacing her license.”

READ MORE: Charlie Kirk, Purveyor of ‘Rigged’ Election Lie, Complains GOP Lost ‘Because a Lot of People Do Not Trust the System’xn

The report does not mention the other two guests Trump dined with, reportedly far right wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, who has supported adult men having sex with young teens, and Karen Trump 2016 aide Karen Giorno, who was reportedly involved in a pay-for-pardon scheme.

 

 

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