Central Voice

Linking LGBT Communities In Central Pennsylvania And Beyond

All Blog Posts (384)

Having Trouble Being Thankful?

Have you been seeing more problems around you lately? It’s hard to think of a time in the past when it seems the entire world was so upset. If we continue to feed our minds on all the slanted and bias stories in the media this agitation can greatly affect our personal lives.

 

There is an old…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on November 25, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

When Abundance Becomes Clutter

What is your personal idea of abundance? First-world thinking about this is far different than what we find in third-world countries. More technologically-advanced countries tend to allow marketing and advertising to dictate what abundance means, while less-developed areas find joy in a simpler life-style.

We don’t have to fall into the corporate trap of “more is better.” Magazines, for example, abound on store shelves claiming the best way to lose weight or gain muscle. The vast…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on November 18, 2016 at 2:19pm — No Comments

Stop Trying To Be Yourself

Are you still trying to find your “purpose?” The problem is not finding it. The real challenge is what to do after you figure it out!

I starting teaching a workshop over twenty years ago called, “Discovering Your Bliss.” I was in my Joseph Campbell period, a ministerial student and wild about realizing in my own life what a difference having a vision and mission in life can make.

That afternoon seminar morphed itself into a manual and eventually…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on October 21, 2016 at 7:00am — No Comments

Being Centered Through Mindfulness

Do you find yourself becoming increasingly agitated as the United States moves closer to the 2016 Presidential Election? You’re not alone. I’m hearing from people locally, throughout the country, as well as abroad. They are feeling everything from disgust to sincere fear.

 

This writing is not to affect your vote for one particular candidate. It is, however, using the election, the debates and the misinformation of the media on all candidates as an example of how easily we can…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on October 14, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

Snarky, Snide and Sarcastic

Snarky, Snide and Sarcastic

 

We all have our unique ways of expressing ourselves. We can also make ourselves pretty miserable trying to get others to express themselves the same way. Ashleigh Brilliant once wrote that “I need a map of your mind to avoid the most dangerous areas.” Wouldn’t that be helpful!

 

Some people have a very off-the-wall sense of humor. A person like that can be fun to be around and most entertaining. It is often difficult, however,…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on October 7, 2016 at 6:30am — No Comments

Who Are You Listening To?

What is really important in your life? I mean, with all that’s going on in the world, what do we really need to know?

 

Apparently several papers and the Internet media feel the impending divorce of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt is front page news. No, seriously. A local news radio station reported recently this was actually on the front page of several newspapers.

 

This is not about all the other events that could have taken precedent. We can all name several,…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on September 23, 2016 at 7:00am — No Comments

Why Rituals Are Important

Do you have sacred rituals in your life? Unless you are practicing a religion where ritual is part of worship this may not seem to be important to you. There’s a lot, however, to be said for ritual.

 …

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on September 16, 2016 at 2:07pm — No Comments

What's Your Daily Practice?

What’s Your Daily Practice?

 

Did you enjoy watching the 2016 Rio Olympics? In spite of the various controversies surrounding these Games, it’s hard not to be impressed with the dedication of the individual athletes.

 

It was fascinating to watch the competitors mentally rehearse their routines before it was their turn to perform. But this wasn’t playful fantasy. It was vividly remembering years, if not decades in some cases, of practice along with…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on September 9, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

Similar and Different

Have you ever met someone, thought how similar you were, but then discovered some glaringly different beliefs? It can be most unsettling. We think we’re on the same wavelength and suddenly realize this isn’t true at all.

 

I remember accepting a temporary secretarial position many years ago that required proficiency with the Word and Excel programs. While my abilities were more than sufficient, I was stopped dead in my tracks when I sat down at the Apple computer in front of…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on August 24, 2016 at 10:20am — No Comments

Why Bother?

Ever ask yourself that question? Perhaps you’ve tried relationship after relationship, but nothing seems to have any longevity. Maybe you’ve tried for years to please a relative or mate without success. You may have some examples of your own.

 

It can seem so hopeless, so frustrating.

 

Why…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on August 22, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

The Small Stuff

It’s the little things that make a difference in our lives. We have the choice whether seemingly insignificant events are going to produce happiness, sorrow, regret or gratitude, among many other emotions. In fact, it’s the small stuff that can actually be a life saver for us.

 

In Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's, A Study in Scarlet, Sherlock Holmes’ sidekick, Dr. Watson is credited with writing this small piece of wisdom:

 

No man…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on August 15, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

Casting Stones in Judgment

How do you feel when someone judges you unfairly? Probably pretty lousy, or perhaps very angry. It might make you sad because the opinions of others can feel so undeserved and wrong.

 

Yet, we all judge. We judge ourselves most severely, but we don’t hesitate to make determinations about others throughout the day that may or may not be based in truth. Jesus said to judgmental people of his day wanting to stone an adulteress that the person who was sinless should be casting the…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on August 8, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

The Blessing of Limitations

Recently I’ve written about having problems as part of experiencing our humanity. I’ve also brought up using disempowerment as a tool of empowering our lives.

 

Both of these topics have resulted in numerous emails or comments on social media. Most have applauded my stand, but there are a couple of people (in the most severe of criticisms) who think I have no right to be a…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on August 1, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

Light a Candle

How tired are you of the negativity, outright lies and blatant disregard for common sense we hear from the media?

I know.

Silly question.

It’s like whenever there’s a disaster of any kind in the world:  We don’t want to watch, but we do. Sometimes we get so addicted to the details – even though the reporters are merely repeating what was already said 20 minutes earlier – that we find ourselves almost immovable in front of our screen.

If what we are hearing is an…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on July 25, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

There is Power in Disempowerment

Do feel like you live from a place of power, meaning you feel empowered in your life, the decisions you make and the direction of your life? My friend and colleague, the well-known prosperity speaker and Unity minister, Rev. Edwene Gaines, introduces herself as a “woman of power.” That rubs some people the wrong way and Edwene couldn’t give a rat’s patooty about it.

 

It seems society teaches us to vie for power and then criticizes those who pursue it, particularly if that…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on July 18, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

I Love You - Now Change!

Have you noticed how we hold celebrities and spiritual leaders to a higher standard than others? We can be quick to criticize the conduct of people we hold in high esteem if what they do or say doesn’t fit the pictures we’ve created of them.

 

For example, if celebrity couples separate or divorce the gossip rags go crazy, citing the events as yet another example of how famous people can’t manage relationships well – as if the general public can cast the first stone or look to…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on July 11, 2016 at 5:18pm — No Comments

Are You Missing Out?

Do you like to “people watch?” Considering the amount of time I spend in airport terminals for my “day job” it’s become a major pastime for me.

I was having breakfast in Miami International Airport this week with a view to the terminal concourse. Many of the passengers, airport employees, TSA agents and flight crews were all doing the same thing:  Walking by with their noses buried in a mobile device.

There was little if any interaction with other people around them. Sadly,…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on June 29, 2016 at 8:36pm — No Comments

What's Your Vision?

Do you have a “vision?” One of the most important tools we can have for success is a personal vision statement. It succinctly articulates what we want our lives to accomplish, what we want to enjoy, how we wish to live, with whom we wish to live it, and what impact we intend to have on the planet using the gifts that are uniquely ours to give.

 

This week we continue to discuss The Global Vision:  A World That Works For Everyone, brought to us by…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on June 20, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

I Didn't Mean It!

Ever say something and before it’s even out of your mouth you knew you’d regret it? You might have said right then or perhaps later, “I didn’t mean that!”

Sorry.

You sorta kinda probably did.

Our comments might not indicate the type of person we want to be remembered as being for generations to come, but we often mean EXACTLY what we say. True, we may regret having let the cat out of the bag, but there it is, lying exposed on the floor in front of us for all to see, all…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on June 13, 2016 at 9:00am — No Comments

Why?

How often during the day do you ask or hear, “Why?”

“There is no answer to a ‘why’ question.” I was once told. I believe the comment was in response to what a minister should say to comfort the surviving family of someone who had recently died.

Actually, that’s probably not a good time to ask why. It’s a time to comfort one another, get through the next few days, weeks or months, and look for answers later. Another time when “Why?” does little good is when we are discussion the…

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Added by Terry Drew Karanen on June 6, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

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Local Author's Book Makes Top 10 Gay Non-fiction List

Called a "must read," Michael Long's book on gay pioneer Frank Kameny has been chosen as one of the Top 10 gay, non-fiction books for 2014. Gay Is Good: The Life and Letters of Gay Rights Pioneer Franklin Kameny by the Elizabethtown College professor is a "must-read for anyone interested in the history of the gay rights movement” says Publishers Weekly.

Harvard University's Michael Bronski, a staple in the world of gay history, said: “The LGBT movement has been blessed with an amazing array of passionate, provocative, colorful, dedicated, and sometimes infuriating women and men. Frank Kameny is certainly one of the most important. Michael Long’s magnificent book captures the breadth of the movement and the specificity of Kameny’s life and importance.”

Long tells Central Voice about his editing of Kameny's historically rich letters, 150 letters from 1958 to 1975, that reveal some of the early stirrings of today’s politically powerful LGBT movement. The letters are lively and colorful because they are in Kameny’s inimitable voice, a voice that was consistently loud, echoing through such places as the Oval Office, the Pentagon, and the British Parliament, and often shrill, piercing to the federal agency heads, military generals, and media personalities who received his countless letters. Long is the author and editor of several books on politics, religion, and civil rights. He is the editor, most recently, of Beyond Home Plate: Jackie Robinson on Life after Baseball.

Central Voice: What has the response been to your work on Kameny? from the academic community? from the LGBT community?

Michael Long: The book has just been released, but the response thus far has been so positive. Kameny's close friends, like Charles Frances and Bob Witech of Washington, DC, have been generous in their praise of the book.

 

CV: Some advocates are outright sending the book to others?

ML: Malcolm Lazin of Equality Forum has decided to send the book to leading LGBT activists across the country. Early reviews have also been positive, identifying the book as a "must read." I'm pleased about this mostly because it helps to advance the rich and inimitable legacy of Frank Kameny. This of us who fight for LGBT rights stand on his shoulders, and the book helps us understand how incredibly broad his shoulders were. 

CV: Currently, there is lots of dialogue about the intersections of race and LGBT issues. What are your thoughts?

ML: One of the most important things about Kameny is that early on he, like Edward Sagarin and others, identified gays and lesbians as an oppressed minority. That was no small move, and it allowed him to analyze discrimination against gays and lesbians as somewhat akin to discrimination against people of color. It also helped him articulate the need for civil rights and liberties for gays and lesbians early on.

CV: Wasn't Kameny an early petitioner of the US Supreme Court?

ML: His 1961 petition to the US Supreme Court--a landmark document--did exactly that while at the same time telling the justices that homosexuality was moral. It's breathtaking material. Kameny also turned to the civil rights movement for inspiration and instruction for advancing civil rights for oppressed gays and lesbians. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Stokely Carmichael are among those who influenced his deliberate efforts to politicize the homophile movement and turn it into a political power that politicians could no longer ignore. So Kameny actually helped to create the intersections of race and LGBT issues that we continue to experience today.

SIDEBAR

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Things you may not know about Franklin Kameny -

*During the height of the Lavender Scare, openly fought the US government for firing him because he was gay (1958).

*Led a long campaign to force the US Civil Service Commission to permit the hiring of gays and lesbians individuals for federal jobs, including those requiring security clearances (1957 on).

*Filed first US Supreme Court petition arguing that gays and lesbians were an oppressed minority deserving equal treatment under law, and that homosexuality was moral (1961).

*Co-founded the Mattachine Society of Washington, the nation’s first organization dedicated solely to securing civil rights and liberties for gays and lesbians (1961).

*Co-founded regional and national gay and lesbian groups designed to politicize the movement and secure and advance political power in government and civil society (1963 on).

*Organized the first White House picketing by a group seeking civil rights and liberties for gays and lesbians. Similar picketing soon followed in front of the US Civil Service Commission, Independence Hall in Philadelphia, and the Pentagon (1965).

*Criticized numerous leading media personalities, including Ann Landers, Johnny Carson, and Rona Barrett, for their anti-gay views (1966 on).

*Staged protests (“zaps’) for gay rights at American Psychiatric Association conventions, eventually forcing the APA to delist homosexuality as a mental disorder (1971 on).

*Became the first openly gay candidate for the US Congress (1971).

*Acted as counsel to numerous gays and lesbians facing discrimination in the US military and served as a driving force behind the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

 

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