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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

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    LGBTQ and christians

    A group of students and I went to go see “”For the Bible Tells Me So”” a few weeks ago. I recommend that you see the movie, not purely because of its supportive theme of LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) Christians and their families. I give the movie a “”thumbs up”” because the people’s stories themselves speak to the courage, sadness, redemption and hopefulness that LGBTQ people and their families experience in the “”coming out”” process.

    I affirm the theological and sociological points that the film makes for its viewers. Additionally, I had a fun time hanging out with some really smart, really inquisitive, friendly college students who came from all sorts of social locations and sexual orientations. The students who went with me to The Loft Cinema to see the movie suggested over dinner that the film is really about creating friendly, affirming one-on-one relationships in close proximity with LGBTQ people. Such connections with people from different classes, cultural contexts and sexual orientations is where our society will indeed become more inclusive, and fear of “”others”” will diminish; however, I left the theater still wondering about a few things that we need to resolve in terms of creating inclusive, multi-cultural Christian communities.

    The experiences of a 20-something gay, young male college student who comes from a multiracial familial context are not the same as my experiences as a professional, 50-year-old, gay white priest. Additionally, I personally know how difficult it is to invite teenagers and young adults into our church communities, especially when our liturgies feel and sound weird and ministers use outdated jokes from ’70s and ’80s movies. We further compound these problems when we deny our differences and pass by opportunities to celebrate the creativity and fresh perspectives that young people bring into our faith communities.

    Our mutual bonds of affection require intentional levels of listening, understanding and sharing – even among LGBTQ people in broader settings. In the words of Audre Lorde, a self-described black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet: “”It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept and celebrate those differences.””

    Rev. Jim Strader
    Episcopalian chaplain
    Campus Christian Center


    Let independents vote in Arizona!

    Voters in yesterday’s primaries were given a limited ballot with candidates only from their registered political party, and Independents were kept from voting at all. One letter to the editor that appeared in the Arizona Daily Star a short while ago argued that voters should not be allowed to cast ballots in primary elections for a candidate from a different party because they may select someone who does not represent the party’s views. Which is more important, however: the views of the party, or the views of the people? All voters should be able to cast one ballot for the person they believe will best lead our nation, even if that person is from a different party. Political parties should exist to serve the American people. If they instead become barriers that prevent people from expressing their true political views, they only hamper our government.

    Sam Wager
    senior majoring in creative writing and English


    Planned Parenthood critique is unfounded

    I must say that I find my friend Mike Hathaway’s diatribe against Planned Parenthood (“”A going-out-of-pregnancy sale?”” Monday 2/4) baseless, and frankly, not even worth the paper it was printed on. Without belaboring the point, if a $10 coupon for services or products offered by Planned Parenthood will inspire just one Wildcat to begin to use contraception or to seek attention for a health problem, it is well worth whatever “”moral outrage”” that such an item creates among conservatives on campus. STIs and unplanned pregnancies are no joke, and to dissuade people from seeking valuable services relative to reproductive health offered by Planned Parenthood in the name of quasi-satire is what is truly morally objectionable.

    Andy Gaona
    UA alumnus


    Look at the numbers, Mike!

    Well Mike, if you look at the annual report for 2005-06 on the Planned Parenthood Web site, you would see that the bulk of their revenue (38 percent or $343 million out of the total $902 million) actually comes from charging for health care services. If they gave everything away for free like you want them to, their total revenue would be $560 million. Since their total expenses are $847 million, that would create a deficit of $287 millon.

    Government grants only provide for 34 percent (or $307 million) of Planned Parenthood’s revenue. Title X (which by federal mandate can’t be used for abortions) only grants around $280 million, and has not been increased (but it has risen because of inflation) since 2000. The thought that Planned Parenthood is being paid by head or fetus or whatever you think they’re getting from the government is very wrong.

    Planned Parenthood does very little lobbying. In the 2006 season, they spent only $237,335 on lobbying. That is nothing. They have a total of eight lobbyists, only three of whom are in-house.

    The “”profit”” you talk of isn’t a profit. The $55 million “”profit”” is just excess funds that are probably carried over to the next year or saved away in case the government becomes even more hostile toward women’s rights. Maybe you should call the Planned Parenthood headquarters and ask them about it.

    Also, using the search term “”Planned Parenthood profits”” on Google only brings up extremely right wing/Christian news sites and your articleð-not one reputable news source. That really destroys your credibility, since it’s fairly obvious you haven’t talked to anyone from Planned Parenthood or even looked at their Web site.

    Kate McDonnell
    junior majoring in English


    Faulty comparisons over Hamas

    This is a response to Kareem Hassounah’s comments about the situation in Gaza (“”Lets not get choked up on lightbulbs”” Monday 2/4). First, your comments about the Palestinians being more than capable of supporting themselves when they have the ability to do so. This comment implies that the Palestinians haven’t had sufficient opportunity to support themselves. What about their free elections in 2006 when they voted in Hamas, an organization recognized by most major democracies as a terrorist group? Perhaps the people should have looked to a group that best serves the interest of a Palestinian state, not one that attempts action through suicide bombers as can be seen from Monday’s bombing in the Israeli city of Dimona killing one, which Hamas took credit for.

    Second, a comparison of Hamas to the IRA is blasphemy. The IRA and Hamas do share qualities in the sense they are both “”resistance”” groups; however, one need only look at their ideologies or charters to realize that there is a significant difference. The IRA wanted independence from a nation so that they could create a united Ireland. They were not asking for all of Britain to become Ireland. Hamas has made it very clear that they will not stop until all of modern day Israel is part of a Palestinian country. This is absurd and perhaps could have worked in the early 1950s and to really stretch it the early 1960s. However, it is very obvious that Israel is not going anywhere and instead of chasing impossible objectives perhaps Hamas should take a less violent, more rational approach.

    Also, Israel has made several attempts at peace with the Palestinians. The Camp David summit in 2000 offered to give back parts of Jerusalem, disengage Israeli military immediately from 73 percent of the West Bank and 100 percent of Gaza. The Palestinians rejected this plan. In 1993 there were the Oslo Accords, the “”Road Map to Peace”” in 2002, and in 2007 the Annapolis Conference. To say the Israelis have not engaged the Palestinians in attempts to create peace is an outright lie. If the Palestinians really want peace they need to prove that they can handle the responsibility that comes with it.

    Robert Lattin
    Near Eastern studies senior

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