Comment by James Cox on July 3, 2012 at 2:58pm

Dear Folks:

When I and my wife Lisa married, we were concerned that some of our friends that were gay and in the audience would be hurt. Sadly we did not know how to fix this. We both became active with the local BRO (Basic Rights Oregon) group that is involved with the local gay rights issue.

A year ago, my brother-inlaw lost his partner of 22 years to AIDS complications. We attended the burial and family gathering of Robert and helped Lisa's brother with estate issues.

Early 80's, I meet a retired prof. in Portland, Dr. Kirkendall. He had been involved with human sexuality issues since the late 50's, founding the organization SECUS. I proof read his last book before his death in 1991. The book was concerning the 'Future of human sexuality by the year 2020', which latter became a college texbook. Kirk waas awarded the Humanist of the Year the year after Carl Sagan.

Over the time I knew Kirk, I had a chance to read his hate mail, which we both thought to be great entertainment. Most if not all was from theists, that were disturbed that Kirk and SECUS had created a climate where human sexuality was now open to conversation and that alternative expressions of human relating would be accepted or tolerated. 'May you burn in hell', 'you are going to hell', and other derivations were common in the received prose. In spite of all this Kirk died at a rip of old age having tried to make the world just a little better. He had a great sense of humor, and became a friend on my first visit with him.

I know that not all theists are cruel, and have experienced many that are informed by what ever good can be extracted from biblical teachings. Sadly, it is also true that some use the bible as bludgening weapon to rationalize/justify what ever ugliness they carry within themselves. I also see my own ugliness at times, having been raised in a family that had few deep experiences with folks from other cultures or orientations. Happily my distance from family beliefs has increased, and father is no longer with us. The person I am to become is now in my hands, my presence here is just one more input for 'soul' building.  

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