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Martin Rice of LAMBDA Hawaii Speaks Out Against the Bigotry Of The Boy Scouts of America And The United Ways Decision To Fund The BSA

The Garden Island, March 15, 2002
3137 Kuhio Highway, Lihu`e, Kaua`i, Hawai`i 96766
(Fax: 808 245-5286)(E-Mail: )
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Letter: Acceptance is needed to break the "cycle"

 A comment made by Mr. Kaipo Kealalio, Kaua`i Boy Scouts executive in the article "United Way continues funding Boy Scouts," which appeared in the March 13th edition of the Garden Island needs to be rebutted.

 Mr. Kealalio bluntly stated: "I'm for kids, period." I would like Mr. Kealalio to know that I'm in it for the kids too. I do what I do, that is activism associated with gay-related issues, for the sake of the children who must follow us.

 I see the acceptance of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered children into the mainstream of our society as one of the most pressing issues facing us, but sadly for the most part, that acceptance is shunned, ignored or overlooked. In order to break the cycle of hate, fear and violence directed towards children who are in the sexual minority, heterosexual children must be taught by example that there are many types of people in the world.

 Forcibly trying to closet a segment of society and trying to pretend that segment doesn't exist is foolhardy policy that only leads to further problems down the road.

 Mr. Kealalio, I also do what I do for the sake of the of the children who are sexual minorities, who wind up on our doorsteps, abused, debased, maligned, frightened, disowned, scared, beaten, undereducated and suicidal.

No child deserves such treatment, yet it continues today despite every major psychological and sociological study of the last 25 years indicating that the full range of the human sexual experience is normal.

 When a child declares to his or her parents that his or her sexual orientation is different from the "norm," that child is actually telling the parent that he or she respects them, loves them, and wants to live honestly with them. Often, however, such an revelation is treated with shock, shame, anger, confusion or a multitude of negative reactions from parents who are not prepared to deal with such honesty.

 The best way to deal with people who are not the same as oneself is to get in close proximity to them, to work, or live or deal with them on a regular basis. One then learns that we're all basically the same, and we have nothing to fear from each other.

- Martin Rice, Kapa`a, Kaua`i []

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