Posts Tagged ‘LGBTTQ2+’

The City of Calgary finally joined the civilized world, at least symbolically, with their ban on Conversion Therapy. That is the therapy where you try to re-wire someone’s God created sexual identity (or if not a believer in God, evolved sexual identity). Now don’t obstuficate by quibbling over identity, it is a hardwired being and belonging in-self. They have joined other civic-municipal jurisdictions in the province of Alberta taking an action the Provincial government will not. The province, unlike other provinces (B.C., Ontario, Manitoba and Nova Scotia) have not taken the step, but our current Federal Government has tabled a ban legislation.

Yes, there is many saying the ban could’ve been politics to cover up other issues of the time to control the news cycle. This is highly possible as there was a community association fighting to not be forced to conform what the city wanted their city to be based on their city Councillor’s ideology on community development, and they lost any media attention as they were on the docket the same day as the ban. As well, as the ongoing transparency woes. All of this was sidelined in the media over the symbolic stance for human rights, and affirmation of the person. I would like to side with the concept the symbolism was done in the best of intentions– but politics be politics. So what is conversion therapy?

The noted article states conversion therapy has probably been happening for over 100 years, which is yes. I noted it caught on with fundamentalist religious sects as a practice based on faulty social science. The science being as we began to unpack the Adverse Childhood Experiences (over 20 years ago even before that was the term) would look at the effects of talk and narrative therapy on a child or adolescent upon their sexual health after molestation, sexual assault, rape or sex trafficking. What they found was a slim percentage that responded moving from believing they had same sex attraction to being cis-gendered. What was not taken into account was the trauma of the assaults, and the interruption of what a healthy sexual identity would be for the person, or if someone existed already on the spectrum within the scope of bi-sexuality to broader (the new term, pan-sexual) that they could easily conform to a societal norm to be accepted, but it had not dealt with the root issue or effective healing. It though gave a running game “rooted in psychology” that fundamentalists could latch on to their abuse/misuse of scriptures.

This idea of conforming was seen a lifetime ago when I was in youth ministry, and the relationship (long-distance, from the south western USA) I was in had a youth in her youth group post some writing on our shared site, about how this youth had wrestled with the “sin” of same-sex attraction and came out heterosexual. Seeing the article, I posted several other articles and papers to basically move it to the archive. What was seen in the youth, is either a) someone just exploring, has nothing to do with “sin”…that is trying to figure out who they are; or b) were on the spectrum, and finally decided simply to conform so she would not lose her place of belonging within her youth group than be truly who she was created to be and lose the ability to belong. This was what was termed a primitive baptist church, and brought a literal reading lens without context to worship and the scriptures.

These would be the same that would point to the Hebrew Bible book of Leviticus’ sexual laws and say–see it says kill the homosexual. Except a) the term did not exist in the time of Leviticus, and b) the challenge had more to do with a people coming out of slavery-bondage-exile in Babylon-Assyria that had temple practices that forced people into sexual relations with priests and animals. Not a healthy loving sexual identity, or even speaking to how one is created. For all of humanity is created in the Holy’s image (Imageo Dei) which means the entire sexual identity spectrum is within that creation and part of the Imageo Dei. This can be proven through two other examples. One is that Fundamentalists will use the Hebrew Bible story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah to prove their Queer hate because in the story the group of men wanted to anally rape amongst other violence upon the visiting angels, Lot’s reaction was to offer up his daughters to the mob. Due to this for many centuries the act of anal sex, and anal rape were cover under the term sodomy, which perpetuated the bad reading of what the story was about and what led to the destruction. It is in the book of the prophet, Ezekiel that the prophet points out it is injustice, in hospitality, and abuse that led to their destruction… and it is used as a warning for society that by not caring for the least of these, by commodifying sexual relations, by accepting abuse, and by allowing power to dehumanize it will continue with a cycle of destruction (y’know or we could say the porn industry now, or reality dating television). Truly, nothing to do with same sex attraction and love. For the Christian Testament you need to get into the Epistles, and the one that is usually the go to is Paul’s to the Romans. It speaks of not acting against one’s created nature, it points out that those who are made cis-gendered are having sex with those of the same gender. This was speaking directly to a norm in Roman society where an older adult (usually males) would make a “adult” (man) out of a child by raping them…which is an abhorrent practice and behaviour, it was also pointing out things like incest, abuse of power to force sexual relationships…hmm… seeing a pattern? Does it have anything to do with the sexual spectrum? Or about humanity’s inhumanity.

Our world, and understanding of what it means to be neighbour is changing. Hopefully through evolution, and healthy spirituality/religion into something better, which lends itself to the symbolism of a ban on Conversion Therapy, and at the levels that can make true bans of the practice need to follow through (especially those that claim to believe in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit). I know personally that the change is happening, though to still have these conversations in 2019 is tiring, especially when another life time ago, I was writing:

Love Transcends All

The era of 1996 was not an especially good time in history for Queer-hate, and coming out as an ally from a teen page columnist did short circuit my career path with that specific newspaper due to the high volume of death threats directed my ways, and a very skittish insurance company. Yet I still stand by my words, and hold to it. When it comes to love, between consenting adults in equality, I stand by Trudeau Sr. when he decriminalized homosexuality in Canada, “The nation does not belong in the bedroom of the people”.

For the religious who are still struggling, look to the words of Jesus, Love as he loved us. Look to the fruit of the relationship: is it edifying, is it supportive, does it allow love to flourish, does it allow for the people involved to be the best they are created to be?

So what is in a ban?

A time to pause, reflect, celebrate in the affirmation of neighbour as an Imageo Dei, and releasing our own biases, hates and indifference. It is 2020 and time to move forward…truly….

Why can’t there be a big red button?

-War Doctor

           Like any good science fiction questions around the essence of us (humanity) should be brought forward. This is at the bedrock of the Doctor Who 50th anniversary movie (watch trailer here), Day of the Doctor.  It is the deepest plunging into the hardest thing to  comprehend for any person… ourselves.

As the regeneration who chose themselves undeserving of the name, but asks the question as in the clips above, the Warrior Doctor, “I am looking for the Doctor.” The one who is called to heal, to help to aid…or as Clara will note the thrum of the Tardis is a sound of hope. But this is about that corner of the mind of the Doctor, no, the heart where hope has gone out.

For it was in the 9th regeneration that the fabled time war happened. When Daleks and Time Lords went to war to end all wars. Where the rest of the universes saw the Time Lords just as evil as the Daleks who view anything outside their race as need to be exterminated, which this mini-episode Night of the Doctor expertly portrays as the Doctor must make a choice to not be apart of the war or to be apart of the solution?

The haunting begins.

Much like we make choices within our own lives at any given moment with the information available. Whether it is good, bad, horrible or indifferent. It is what is possible and probably for us at that moment. Much like moments in human history (very hard to bring 21st century morals onto situation 400 years old or 150 years old as we try to erase instead of critically teach history so the cycle can be fully broken. Just ask any abuse survivor, the story and triumph need to be spoken so that it will not be repeated, in all its darkness).

This literally becomes the story. As the device designed to end the Time War by the Doctor is AI with a conscience and brings the Doctor to begin interacting with his decision. The decision? At that moment and time in war as the Daleks are all gathered at Gallifrey—to end it all, Daleks and his people. The haunting ripples this will bring through time.

The decision driven by the motto burned into a wall by him “No More.” The war must end.

The journey forward form that choice showing the grief cycle. The short regeneration shortly after not even there. The true shock.

But the struggle between who are known as the Tenth (David Tenant) and Eleventh (Matt Smith) Doctor’s to forget this period in time. How it shapers personality. One who lives in pained regret and the other who lives to forget, to move forward.

The haunting question answered by 2.41 billion.

But with the Eleventh Doctor being 400 years out…is there another decision that can be seen?

What if that decision can be tried?

What if in your moment of darkness your future selves could stand with you and you would not have to be alone?

What if, you live in acceptance of the choice and find hope in spite of it to move forward in a better life for yourself and others?

This may seem like nothing more than a toss away sci-fi movie from the BBC. Apart of geek culture and nothing more.

Yet we live in a time of reconciliation.

A time when groups who have been oppressed and the former oppressors know that something needs to change.

But how do we get there?

Sometimes a science fiction story can show us the interior and exterior journey in a way that creates conversations that can create the space for critical discussion and active listening, that other venues cannot.

Just think of using this in a religious or political or classroom setting with the Time War as the metaphor for residential schools, Canadian Eugenic practices for those with disabilities, the destructive LGBTTQ2+ laws; the dying with dignity or abortion laws; slavery, the list can go on…

For what questions would haunt our journey where the answer 2.41 billion could just be as haunting.

But even more so.

What is the new life?

What is the regeneration that awaits each one of us?

Where does hope exist?

Do you hear the thrum of the TARDIS? Or are you blocking it out?