Words of Support for the Equality Act from an 81-year-old former CR Movement "Foot Soldier"

I, as one who attended the March on Washington, participated in Mississippi Freedom Summer, two phases of the Selma to Montgomery March, and the Poor People's Campaign, am very pleased with legislation that will protect the rights of LGBTQ persons. Martin Luther King once said about laws against lynching, "A law may not make a man love me, but it will discourage him from lynching me." My Christian faith compels me to link love to justice. I am saddened that some of my Christian colleagues do not understand that their opposition to legal justice for LGBTQ persons and same-gendered-loving couples contradicts their claim to "love the sinner, but hate the sin". Love that does not express itself in justice is not authentic love.

I, as an African American, am deeply disturbed that much of the faith-based resistance to LGBTQ persons is much like the faith-based racial segregation I experienced as I lived in North Carolina, Texas, and South Carolina. Sadly, as I observe religious bigotry expressing itself cloaked in religious freedom, I cannot help but respond by saying, "The more things change, the more they remain the same".

The Equality Act represents an understanding that both the nation and we who are people of faith affirm the God-given humanity of all people, regardless of who they are or who they love.

Gilbert H. Caldwell A retired United Methodist Minister Co-Participant in Truth in Progress, producers of the documentary film in process; "From Selma to Stonewall - Are We There Yet?" Asbury Park, NJ

SELMA: Dare we dream?

Langston Hughes ends his poem by asking; "What happens to a dream deferred?........ does it like a raisin in the sun explode?" How do we, or do we, find ways to assess the emotional and spiritual toll that hiding in the closet of internalized racism and/or internalized heterosexism takes on the lives, humanity and well-being of those who are black, those who are gay and those who are both? Could the THERE of "From Selma to Stonewall: Are we there yet?" be that place that none of us or few of us have dared to go?

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