HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Behind the Aegis » Journal
Page: « Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 22 Next »

Behind the Aegis

Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Member since: Sat Aug 7, 2004, 03:58 AM
Number of posts: 40,048

Journal Archives

Remembering the UpStairs Lounge: The U.S.A.’s Largest LGBT Massacre Happened 40 Years Ago Today

The 24th of June in 1973 was a Sunday. For New Orleans’ gay community, it was the last day of national Pride Weekend, as well as the fourth anniversary of 1969’s Stonewall uprising. You couldn’t really have an open celebration of those events — in ’73, anti-gay slurs, discrimination, and even violence were still as common as sin — but the revelers had few concerns. They had their own gathering spots in the sweltering city, places where people tended to leave them be, including a second-floor bar on the corner of Iberville and Chartres Street called the UpStairs Lounge.

That Sunday, dozens of members of the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), the nation’s first gay church, founded in Los Angeles in 1969, got together there for drinks and conversation. It seems to have been an amiable group. The atmosphere was welcoming enough that two gay brothers, Eddie and Jim Warren, even brought their mom, Inez, and proudly introduced her to the other patrons. Beer flowed. Laughter filled the room.

Just before 8:00p, the doorbell rang insistently. To answer it, you had to unlock a steel door that opened onto a flight of stairs leading down to the ground floor. Bartender Buddy Rasmussen, expecting a taxi driver, asked his friend Luther Boggs to let the man in. Perhaps Boggs, after he pulled the door open, had just enough time to smell the Ronsonol lighter fluid that the attacker of the UpStairs Lounge had sprayed on the steps. In the next instant, he found himself in unimaginable pain as the fireball exploded, pushing upward and into the bar.

The ensuing 15 minutes were the most horrific that any of the 65 or so customers had ever endured — full of flames, smoke, panic, breaking glass, and screams.

MCC assistant pastor George “Mitch” Mitchell escaped, but soon returned to try to rescue his boyfriend, Louis Broussard. Both died in the fire, their bodies clinging together in death, like a scene from the aftermath of Pompeii.

more...




We have come a long way, but there is still a long way to go. Until people recognize and confront their homophobia and heterosexism, we will not see true equality. When people make jokes about homophobes, especially male ones, as "self-loathing gays", we will only see further bigotry and hate go unaddressed. Until people recognize the struggle for equality and our civil rights is far from over, we will see people rise against us. The tragedy of the UpStairs Lounge and reactions to it let's us see how far we have come in some respects, but the Pulse massacre and reactions to it, show how far we still have to go!

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sat Jun 25, 2016, 02:42 AM (18 replies)

In the blink of an eye, 11 children lost their mother. Monday in Orlando they mourned.

In the blink of an eye, 11 children were left without a mother.

They’d considered the reality of losing the 49-year-old Brenda Lee Marquez McCool before. All 11 had sat by fearfully while she battled cancer — not once but twice.

“The doctor gave her a year to live,” her ex-husband Robert Pressley said.

But as Noreen Vaquer, a friend from her Brooklyn childhood, told the Orlando Sentinel, “she was a fighter.” So, twice, her 11 children breathed a collective sigh of relief — their mom was going to be fine. She was going to have fun with them, to share life with them, to take care of them above all.

She did all three on June 12 while dancing at the Pulse nightclub with her 21-year-old son Isaiah Henderson.

--SNIP--

After opening fire in the crowded club, Omar Mateen pointed his weapon at the mother and son. But McCool was not going to let her son come to harm. She shielded her son with her body as Mateen resumed fire..

more...







HER NAME IS Brenda Lee Marquez McCool!


Posted by Behind the Aegis | Wed Jun 22, 2016, 02:56 AM (9 replies)

Hate Crimes Against LGBT People Are Sadly Common

The massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando on Sunday was the worst mass shooting in American history and the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil since Sept. 11. Through another lens, however, it was not an outlier. The gunman’s choice of target, a gay club, makes him just one of many to commit hate crimes against gay Americans. Although the magnitude and violence of the attack was unusual, the targeting of LGBT Americans is sadly common.

--snip---

Of 5,462 “single-bias incidents” (hate-crime incidents with one motivation) in the FBI’s 2014 hate crime statistics database, 1,115, about a fifth, were motivated by bias against a sexual orientation or gender identity.1 (This count is almost certainly much lower than the actual number of hate crimes. Data on hate crimes is notoriously difficult to collect, as it relies heavily on self-reporting and many hate crimes are never categorized as such.) Of those incidents, 54 percent targeted gay men specifically. Only two groups were the targets of more hate crimes than gay men: black and Jewish people. (Obviously, all these groups aren’t mutually exclusive.)

--snip--

However, the shooter’s choice of location may have been all the more insidious for that. A gay-friendly bar or club is supposed to be a safe place. Even before Sunday’s shooting, nightclubs were slightly more dangerous for LGBT people than for other groups; only 1.6 percent of all hate crimes in 2014 occurred in bars and nightclubs, compared with the 2.1 percent of those that targeted people for their sexual orientation and gender identity.

The motivations of the killer may become clearer as investigators learn more. Nevertheless, in his choice to target gay people, he wasn’t alone.

more...




This won't come as surprise to GLBT people or our real allies, but it will undoubtedly be a shocker to some, even more so to those who think anti-Semitism is a "joke", "not a real problem", or "thing of the past". Keep in mind too, not all states report hate crimes based on sexual orientation and gender identity, so how true are these numbers?
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sun Jun 19, 2016, 03:07 AM (21 replies)

Anderson Cooper reads Orlando shooting victims names

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue Jun 14, 2016, 02:45 AM (6 replies)

Jewish congressional candidate, 25, targeted with anti-Semitic abuse

A young Jewish candidate for Congress in California has been targeted with anti-Semitic abuse in the days before the state’s primary election.

Erin Schrode, 25, who has been featured recently by several news outlets, including JTA, for her underdog candidacy against incumbent Jared Huffman, has been hit with the abuse on social media and cellphone messages, she revealed in a Facebook post late Saturday night.

Personal information such as her phone number and email also were posted online.

Among the messages she has received, Schrode said, are “Everyone knows it’s TIME for America’s first evil retarded teen c— Congress kike!”; “Fire up the oven!” and “All would laugh with glee as they gang raped her and then bashed her bagel eating brains in.”

more...
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue Jun 7, 2016, 01:39 PM (16 replies)

And the winner is....French, Iranian artists top at Holocaust cartoon contest

Zeon was awarded a cash prize of $12,000 in the cartoon section and Forughi received a cash prize of $7,000 in the caricature category during a ceremony held at the Art Bureau on Monday.

Speaking at the ceremony, the secretary of the competition, Masud Shojaei-Tabatabai said, “One of the subjects we asked cartoonists to focus on was why the Western countries arrest any scholar who doubts the Holocaust while they put no limit on freedom of speech in other categories.”

“The other subject was why Palestinians should pay for the Holocaust… we are concerned about the modern Holocaust that is being sought by the Zionist regime, which is known as a child killer government,” he added.

In the cartoon section, the second prize went to Jitet Koestana from Indonesia while the third prize was presented to Mahmud Nazari from Iran.

more..

1st prize...



Charming.
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Jun 3, 2016, 02:17 AM (10 replies)

Anti-Semitic incidents are soaring, group says

Reports of anti-Semitic incidents are soaring this year across New England, an increase fueled by vandalism, harassment, and other acts at schools and colleges, according to statistics released Wednesday by the Anti-Defamation League.

According to the ADL, there have already been 56 anti-Semitic acts in the region this year, nearly as many as for all of 2015, when 61 were reported.

The data alarmed Jewish clergy and academics, who said the incidents suggest a rising level of intolerance that may feed on the rhetoric from the contentious political season.

“Clearly, people are acting out on some long-held stereotypes and hatred toward Jews, and it’s designed to send a message of intimidation,” said Robert Trestan, director of the New England Regional Office of the ADL. “We’re increasingly living in an environment where incivility is becoming common and accepted practice.”

more...



Oh wait, wrong smiley...I meant...

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Jun 3, 2016, 02:13 AM (21 replies)

Muslim states block 11 LGBT groups from attending UN Aids meeting

Source: The Guardian

Tuesday 17 May 2016 15.49 EDT Last modified on Tuesday 17 May 2016 16.06 EDT

A group of 51 Muslim states has blocked 11 gay and transgender organizations from attending a high-level meeting at the United Nations next month on ending Aids, sparking a protest by the US, Canada and the EU.

Egypt wrote to the president of the 193-member general assembly on behalf of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation to object to the participation of the 11 groups. It did not give a reason in the letter, which Reuters has seen.

Samantha Power, US ambassador to the UN, wrote to the general assembly president, Mogens Lykketoft, and said the groups appeared to have been blocked for involvement in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocacy.

“Given that transgender people are 49 times more likely to be living with HIV than the general population, their exclusion from the high-level meeting will only impede global progress in combating the HIV/Aids pandemic,” Power wrote.


Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/may/17/muslim-states-united-nations-lgbt-groups-aids-meeting



The article also discusses recent "attacks" on LGBT rights at the UN by Russia, China, India, and parts of Africa. Today is "International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia." Shouldn't that start at the fucking UN?!
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Wed May 18, 2016, 12:43 AM (12 replies)

Today is International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia! (and my birthday!)

From the United Nations:

United Nations release fantastic IDAHOT fight song!

The video, titled ‘Why We Fight”, has been produced as part of the ongoing OHCHR-led UN Free & Equal campaign. Conceived as a tribute to activism, the video brings together footage shot by activists and allies in more than 20 countries as well as at UNHQ in New York and reflects the diversity of organizations and causes that people are fighting for in different countries around the world. Singer-songwriter Rachel Platten is supporting the campaign and lent her hit “Fight Song” as the soundtrack. Please share widely!

http://dayagainsthomophobia.org/united-nations-release-fantastic-idahot-fight-song/



Hatred against the GLBT persists around the world, even in the US it is rearing its ugly head in the forms of anti-gay legislation, anti-transgender "bathroom bills", and all around rancid hate-filled acts!

Celebrate by speaking out against hate, fear, intimidation, and lies leveled against the LGBT community! Celebrate by letting that special LGBT person(s) in your life, know you love them!

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue May 17, 2016, 03:28 AM (23 replies)

The Warsaw Ghetto: Uprising

April 19, 1943, the eve of Passover, seventy-three years ago, today, the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto rose up against the Nazi regime. Though it wouldn't last a month, and most were killed, the rest deported to be killed later, it was a crucial moment in Jewish history. After learning that the Ghetto was to be "liquidated" on orders from SS chief Heinrich Himmler, the Jewish populace did what they could to liberate themselves.

Approximately 7000 Jews were killed in the month long fighting, another 7000 were immediately transferred to Treblinka for immediate death.

The Germans deported almost all of the remaining Jews, approximately 42,000, to the Lublin/Majdanek concentration camp, and to the Poniatowa, Trawniki, Budzyn, and Krasnik forced-labor camps. With the exception of a few thousand forced laborers at Budzyn and Krasnik, German SS and police units later murdered almost all of the Warsaw Jews deported to Lublin/Majdanek, Poniatowa, and Trawniki in November 1943 in “Operation Harvest Festival” (Unternehmen Erntefest(see below)). (source)



Aktion "Erntefest" (Operation "Harvest Festival")

Translated from German, "Erntefest" means "Harvest Festival." The word "Erntefest" was the code name for the German operation to kill all Jews remaining in the Lublin District of the Generalgouvernement (a territory in the interior of occupied Poland) in the fall of 1943. The timing of the operation was apparently in response to several efforts by surviving Jews to resist the Nazis (for example, the uprisings at the Sobibor and Treblinka killing centers, and armed resistance in the Warsaw, Bialystok, and Vilna ghettos). The SS feared additional Jewish-led revolts in the Generalgouvernement. To prevent further resistance the SS decided to kill most of the remaining Jews, who were employed in forced-labor projects and were concentrated in the Trawniki, Poniatowa, and Majdanek camps.

"Erntefest" began at dawn on November 3, 1943. The Trawniki and Poniatowa labor camps were surrounded by SS and police units. Jews were then taken out of the camps in groups and shot in nearby pits dug for this purpose. At Majdanek, Jews were first separated from the other prisoners. They were then taken in groups to nearby trenches and shot. Jews from other labor camps in the Lublin area were also taken to Majdanek and shot. Music was played through loudspeakers at both Majdanek and Trawniki to drown out the noise of the mass shooting. The killing operation was completed in a single day at Majdanek and Trawniki. At Poniatowa the shootings took two days. Approximately 42,000 Jews were killed during "Erntefest."
Holocaust Encyclopedia




Remembering Archivist and Warsaw Ghetto Survivor Rose Klepfisz

The archivist Rose Klepfisz died in her apartment in the Bronx on March 23rd at the age of 102. She is survived by her daughter, Irena Klepfisz, a writer and professor at Barnard College, as well as by relatives in Australia and admirers in Bundist circles and in the field of Jewish Studies around the world. She is predeceased by her husband Michal Klepfisz, who died fighting in the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.

Rose Klepfisz was born on July 22nd 1914 in Warsaw as Shoshana Perczykow. At the insistence of her older sisters, she attended Polish public schools rather than private Jewish schools. The perfect Polish that she learned in school would greatly aid her during WWII. The death of her father, a clockmaker, when she was 12 forced her to leave school prematurely as her family needed the money her sewing could bring. A lifelong lover of literature she continued her studies by taking night classes at a local library. During her teenage years, she was an active member of the Zionist movement Hashomer Hatzair’s youth group and learned to plant tobacco in preparation for a new life in British-Mandate Palestine.

Her politics would change, however, after she met her husband Michal Klepfisz during a skiing trip. Michal spotted her from a distance and chased her down a hill. The two dated for four years before marrying in July of 1937. The newlyweds spent their honeymoon in Paris and soon moved into the home of Michal’s parents, the Bundist activists and teachers Miriam and Jakob Klepfisz. The Klepfiszes were more well-off than Rose’s family and she enjoyed the relative luxuries that their home provided such as a bathtub. In the years before WWII Michal worked as a chemical engineer and was rising in the ranks of the Bund, helping to run the movement’s sports club Morgenstern.

Rose Klepfisz was already pregnant when she was confined to the Warsaw Ghetto alongside nearly half a million of her fellow Jews. She gave birth to her daughter Irena on April 17th, 1941, her husband’s 28th birthday. The young family continued living with Michal’s parents and older sister until they were all lined up in a courtyard during a selection. At the last possible moment, Michal recognized a Jewish policeman he knew and managed to create a diversion, sneaking himself, his wife and his daughter out of harm’s way. The couple soon learned that Michal’s parents had been brought to the umschlagplatz, from which they were put on a transport to Treblinka and murdered.


more...

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue Apr 19, 2016, 05:10 PM (11 replies)
Go to Page: « Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 22 Next »