One thing I’ve learned in the 813 weeks I’ve been writing and posting these commentaries is that some people who love you (or at least say they do) can turn on a dime if you disagree with them on something fundamentally important to them. So I confess I think twice (or more) before I publish a commentary I know will evoke this sort of intense reaction. I don’t want to lose anybody — even those I disagree with.
My hesitation to speak my mind on certain topics for fear of losing friends and followers is a very pale shadow of what many gay and lesbian people, especially teens, feel every day. Many of them “stay in the closet,” filled with anxiety that they will be found out and guilt that they care so much about what others think that it causes them to hide who they are and pretend to be someone else.
President Obama’s unequivocal support for gay unions in his inaugural address and the recent decision of the Boy Scouts to defer action on new policies toward openly gay volunteers and employees has brought the issue to the forefront again.
I know many of the people who follow my work have a deeply grounded religious belief that homosexuality is a sin. Many fortify their convictions by believing that God would not make any child homosexual and, therefore, that it is a choice to be gay or lesbian. Whether you fall into this group or simply want to better understand the human dimension of this aspect of the bullying problem, please — I really mean please — read my commentary on the subject and take the time to watch one or more of the videos included in this piece that I posted last April. It could change your perspective, maybe even your life.
This is Michael Josephson reminding you that character counts.