In a new “It Gets Better” video, Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, the Anglican Communion’s first openly gay Episcopal bishop, tells lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender kids that, despite what some might say, they are exactly the way God made them, creating an inspiring addition to the “It Gets Better” project:
In a piece entitled “How Religion is Killing our Most Vulnerable Youth” that was published in the Huffington Post this week, Bishop Robinson writes that it is up to those of faith, along with other advocates, to speak up and to be a voice against the Religious Right who may shout the loudest about what they claim God wants, but have missed the point entirely:
On the one hand, Religious Right hatemongers and crazies are spewing all sorts of venom and condemnation, all in the name of a loving God.
Just as many gay kids grow up in these conservative denominations as any other. They are told day in and day out that they are an abomination before God. Just consider the sheer numbers of LGBT kids growing up right now in Roman Catholic, Mormon, and other conservative religious households. The pain and self-loathing caused by such a distortion of God’s will is undeniable and tragic, causing scars and indescribable self-alienation in these young victims.
On the other hand, what’s the role of more mainline, more progressive denominations such as mainstream Christianity, Judaism, and Islam in these recent tragedies? Mostly silence. And just like in the days of the AIDS organization Act Up, “silence equals death.”
It is not enough for good people — religious or otherwise — to simply be feeling more positive toward gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people. Tolerance and a live-and-let-live attitude beats discrimination and abuse by a mile. But it’s not enough. Tolerant people, especially tolerant religious people, need to get over their squeamishness about being vocal advocates and unapologetic supporters of LGBT people. It really is a matter of life and death, as we’ve seen.
Have You Heard About the Make It Better Project?
The Make It Better Project is supported by a host of LGBT organizations and charities and is aimed at LGBT youth with the message that, yes, it does get better, but you don’t have to wait. There are people out there wanting to help you to stop the bullying right here, right now; all you have to do is to reach out to them. For more information, and links to resources for LGBT teens, their parents, educators and straight advocates, please click here.
Connect with the Make It Better Project:
- Visit the Make It Better Project Website
- Follow the Make It Better Project on YouTube
- Follow the Make It Better Project on Twitter
- Follow the Make It Better Project on Facebook
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Don’t Suffer in Silence, Get Help!
The Trevor Project runs a 24/7 helpline with trained counselors ready to listen if you or someone you know would like to talk about the issues dealt with in this post.
The Trevor Project Helpline number is 1-866-4-U-TREVOR (1-866-488-7386).
Trevor Project Links:
- Follow the Trevor Project on Facebook
- Follow the Trevor Project on Twitter
- Volunteer for the Trevor Project