U.S.

June 13, 2014

LGBT Pride Month: Turning back discrimination, prejudice everywhere

Tags:
Dawn Altmaier
Fairchild AFB, Wash.

President Barack H. Obama issued a proclamation declaring June as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Pride Month.

This June marks the sixth year recognizing Pride month. In 2009, President Barack Obama proclaimed June as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month.

Many people mistakenly assume Pride month is about celebrating one’s sexual orientation. However, Pride Month is about turning back discrimination and prejudice everywhere it exists.

June was selected as Pride month to commemorate the events of June 1969 known as the Stonewall riots — an event that lasted three days. Patrons and supporters of the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, New York, resisted police harassment of the LGBT community. The popular gay bar had been frequently raided by police officers trying to “clean out the deviants.” The Stonewall riot is credited with launching the gay rights movement.

The struggle for civil rights in the LGBT community actually began much earlier. Dr. Frank E. Kameny fought for gay rights more than a decade before the Stonewall riots. Kameny served in World War II as a civil service employee — an astronomer with the U.S. Army Map Service.

Kameny was fired because it was illegal to be gay and work for the federal government. Not only was Kameny released, but more than 10,000 gay and lesbian employees were forced out of their jobs during the 1950s and 1960s.

Kameny decided to sue and lost. He appealed and lost again. He brought the first civil rights action regarding sexual orientation to the Supreme Court of the United States arguing that the government’s actions toward gays were “an affront to human dignity.” The Supreme Court denied his petition, but this didn’t stop Kameny. He persevered and continued to fight for civil rights for 18 years, when the U.S. Civil Service Commission reversed its policies excluding homosexuals from government employment. Fifty years after he was fired, the U.S. Civil Service Commission issued Kameny a formal apology for being fired solely on the basis of his sexual orientation.

Just like the government as an entity, we as people all too often allow our own personal values and beliefs drive how we will react to another. If someone’s behaviors and actions do not line up with how we feel they should, then we can feel these people have infringed on our most deeply held principles. What we need to remember is that every person has a right to their own values, beliefs and morals. They may not line up with our own, and that’s ok. It doesn’t make one person more right or wrong than another – just different. Don’t use these differences as an excuse for bad or exclusive behavior.

Pride Month is not a celebration of sexual orientation. Pride month is about inclusion and treating all people with respect and dignity regardless of whether or not you approve of their lifestyle. Pride Month is about celebrating the works of Dr. Kameny and others like him, it’s about equality and fairness, and it’s about practicing ‘The Golden Rule.’ Treat others as you would want to be treated – especially when your values and beliefs do not match theirs.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Air Force photograph by Chris Higgins

412th Test Wing 1st Quarter Award Winners

Air Force photograph by Chris Higgins Brig. Gen. Carl E. Schaefer, 412th Test Wing commander, watches Jeanette White, 412th Civil Engineering Group, absolutely smash a foam baseball into the audience after accepting her 30-year...
 
 

News Briefs May 22, 2015

North Gate safety alert SAFETY ALERT! Due to mechanical issues with the North Gate, there have been large metal plates installed over gaps in the roadway while repair operations are being scheduled. Drivers should exercise caution and reduce speeds in these areas. In inclement weather and blowing dust, the plates may become slippery and vehicles,...
 
 
MG-appointments

Don’t be a no show

The 412th Medical Group is dedicated to meeting the health care needs of you and your family by providing access to its services and the best possible medical care. No shows are a costly problem for the 412th MDG and the patie...
 

 
Air Force photograph by Brad White

Team Edwards hosts Military Retiree Appreciation Day

Air Force photograph by Brad White Approximately 400 military retirees, their families and surviving spouses were in attendance during the 2015 Military Retiree Appreciation Day event held at the Oasis Community Center and 27 i...
 
 

Education Center Open House May 27

The Edwards AFB Education Center will be hosting an Open House†that will be open to all military and their family members, and civilians working on Edwards 11 a.m.-1 p.m., May 27. The Education and Training†Center is located on 140 Methusa Ave., Bldg. 2453. Attendees will have the opportunity to speak with the Ed Center staff...
 
 

Excellence in Aviation Award banquet set for June 13

The Flight Test Historical Foundation will hold the 5th annual Excellence in Aviation Awards banquet June 13. This year’s honorees are the California Air National Guard’s 163rd Reconnaissance Wing from March Air Reserve Base. The wing operates the remotely piloted MQ-1 Predator aircraft built by General Atomics Aeronautical Systems. For the first time in the...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>