This was my mama's favorite. She would have turned 89 this month, strange to think. I'm glad she is in a better place than this rough old world.
Just A Link
1 week ago
The bishops of the dioceses of Central New York, Long Island, Rochester and Western New York have announced that priests there may preside at the marriages of same-gender couples while in Albany and New York the bishops have refused. . . .
Enactment of the New York law takes place for Episcopalians against the backdrop of General Convention 2009 Resolution C056m, which says that bishops, "particularly those in dioceses within civil jurisdictions where same-gender marriage, civil unions, or domestic partnerships are legal, may provide generous pastoral response to meet the needs of members of this church." . . .
As the bishops weighed in with their policy stances, the NYC-Metro chapter of Integrity USA said that while it "would rejoice if all bishops were to immediately solemnize marriages, we realize that this is not immediately likely for varying reasons, and we urge charity and pastoral engagement on all sides in other dioceses." The group also said that clergy ought to hold same-gender couples to the same standards of preparation expected of heterosexual people as well as the marriage rubrics in the prayer book. . . .
Citing the marriage rubrics in the Book of Common Prayer, Diocese of Long Island Bishop Lawrence Provenzano said in a pastoral letter that he will "allow for the use of such rites that bless marriages between persons of the same gender and further permit the celebration of the Holy Eucharist in the midst of such blessing."
His letter, titled "A Theological Perspective and Practical Guideline on Marriage in the Diocese of Long Island as New York," was sent to all diocesan clergy and is to be read in Long Island parishes on Aug. 7.
"It is not the priest or bishop who marry the couple. The priest or bishop is present to witness and bless and, when included, celebrate the Holy Eucharist," Provenzano noted. "The function of the ordained person in the rite of marriage is to bless the marriage and provide the appropriate words in the exchange of vows, which indicate within the vows the church's call for permanence and fidelity on the part of those who marry each other." . .
Resolution C056 directs the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music to work with the House of Bishops to collect and develop theological resources and liturgies for blessing same-gender relationships. The commission is to report to the 77th General Convention in 2012 in Indianapolis, which is expected to make some statement of such blessings. A website here contains some of the materials gathered thus far.
|Drag artist Cyon Flare|
I love the gays. Always have. I respect the hell out of them. Because at some point in his or her life, every gay person has to look society straight in the eye and say: “I’m gay, and I really don’t give a fuck what you think.” And that isn’t an easy thing to do. If everyone had that kind of courage, there’d be a lot less frowning faces on the subway. There’d probably be more people dancing on floats, half-naked, covered in metallic body paint, and waving peacock feathers in the air. Because you can’t really be free until you don’t give a fuck. And not giving a fuck is just about the hardest thing there is to do. And every gay person has to do it. And I respect the hell out of that. Always have.
Unfortunately, for the past several weeks, Republican House members have essentially said that the only way they’ll vote to prevent America’s first-ever default is if the rest of us agree to their deep, spending cuts-only approach.
If that happens, and we default, we would not have enough money to pay all of our bills -– bills that include monthly Social Security checks, veterans’ benefits, and the government contracts we’ve signed with thousands of businesses.
For the first time in history, our country’s AAA credit rating would be downgraded, leaving investors around the world to wonder whether the United States is still a good bet. Interest rates would skyrocket on credit cards, on mortgages and on car loans, which amounts to a huge tax hike on the American people. We would risk sparking a deep economic crisis -– this one caused almost entirely by Washington. . . .
Now, I realize that a lot of the new members of Congress and I don’t see eye-to-eye on many issues. But we were each elected by some of the same Americans for some of the same reasons. Yes, many want government to start living within its means. And many are fed up with a system in which the deck seems stacked against middle-class Americans in favor of the wealthiest few. But do you know what people are fed up with most of all?
They’re fed up with a town where compromise has become a dirty word. They work all day long, many of them scraping by, just to put food on the table. And when these Americans come home at night, bone-tired, and turn on the news, all they see is the same partisan three-ring circus here in Washington. They see leaders who can’t seem to come together and do what it takes to make life just a little bit better for ordinary Americans. They’re offended by that. And they should be.
The American people may have voted for divided government, but they didn’t vote for a dysfunctional government. So I’m asking you all to make your voice heard. If you want a balanced approach to reducing the deficit, let your member of Congress know. If you believe we can solve this problem through compromise, send that message.
|Hege Dalen and Toril Hansen|
Hege Dalen and her partner Toril Hansen were eating supper in the camping area opposite Utoya island when they started hearing gunshots and screaming....Other campers rushed to the rescue too, bringing about 150 kids to safety.
Dalen and Hansen drove their boat to the island, and fished out of the water people who were in shock and young people who were injured and transported them ashore. Every now and then bullets almost hit the boat.
Since they couldn't fit everyone into the boat all at once, they returned to the island four times. They might have saved as much as forty people from the clutches of the killer.
|Niagara Falls was lit in rainbow colors last night as gay and lesbian couples wed in this iconic honeymoon location.|
|Kitty Lambert and Cheryle Rudd|
|Phyllis Siegel and Connie Kopelov|
|Michael Johnson and Michael Roberts|
|Kawane Harris and Jeannette Coleman, fighting back joyful tears|
|Dave Lewis and Adam McKew get some sporran action going for their wedding|
Fredy Kaplan and Anthony Cipriano
|Norwegian flags and flowers left in mourning for the slain at Oslo Cathedral|
This passage from the suspect’s postings to an anti-Muslim website struck me though . . .
I dare not even think of how many Norwegian children who have been suicide because of these experiences (assault, robbery, rape, psychological terror committed by Muslim youths). There are probably several hundred in the last 15 years. . . .This from a man who (it is said) methodically killed 80 kids at a youth camp, some while they were swimming away for their lives. Always, the monster the bigot sees in others is themselves. And they are right to fear that monster.
Non-Muslim youth in Oslo aged 12-18 are in a particularly vulnerable situation in terms of harassment [from] Muslim youth.
It goes without saying that many churches, the Catholic Church in particular, oppose the very existence of medical clinics which offer abortion services. Yet they do not suggest that the County Building Inspector refuse to issue a building license or that the city Clerk refuse to process a Business License. None of this administrative process is considered to be a part of, or the administrators culpable for, the abortions that will be conducted at the site.
There simply are no religious beliefs held by any of these public employees, sincerely or otherwise, which forbid them to administer the paperwork involved with any other businesses, marriages, divorces, or other vital statistics which they find morally objectionable. And if there were, their argument is a bit specious considering that they’ve been violating those beliefs with regularity for years.
Catholic beliefs strictly prohibit them from having a gay wedding on the premises. But they're okay with gay couples staying the night in their rooms, they say, and presumably having gay sex. . . .
In addition to married couples who refuse to sign a document promising they won't use contraception and won't have sex unless it's for the express goal of having a child, and single people would need to promise that they won't masturbate.
I'm tired of bigots trotting out the religion card when they actually couldn't care less about enforcing the actual tenets of their religion when it affects anything other than the gay.
The Republican refusal to countenance any way to raise revenues to tackle the massive debt incurred largely on their watch and from a recession which started under Obama's predecessor makes one thing clear. They are not a political party in government; they are a radical faction that refuses to participate meaningfully in the give and take the Founders firmly believed should be at the center of American government. They are not conservatives in this sense. They are anarchists. . . .
They are clearly calculating that the economic devastation their vandalism could create will so hurt the economy that it could bring them back to power through the wreckage. And they will use every smear, every lie, every canard possible to advance this goal. The propaganda channel dreamt of by Roger Ailes in the Nixon era will continue to pump poison into the body politic, until they defeat the man whose legitimacy as president they have never truly accepted.
Coming from abroad, this country seems as if it is beyond dysfunctional. It looks like a banana republic on the verge of economic collapse. Now that Nixon's dream has come true and the GOP is fundamentally the party of the Confederacy, it was perhaps naive to think they could ever accept the legitimacy of this president, or treat him with respect or act as adults in the governing process.
But this is who they are.
Accompanying documents here.The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release July 22, 2011
Statement by the President on Certification of Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell
Today, we have taken the final major step toward ending the discriminatory ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ law that undermines our military readiness and violates American principles of fairness and equality. In accordance with the legislation that I signed into law last December, I have certified and notified Congress that the requirements for repeal have been met. ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ will end, once and for all, in 60 days—on September 20, 2011.
As Commander in Chief, I have always been confident that our dedicated men and women in uniform would transition to a new policy in an orderly manner that preserves unit cohesion, recruitment, retention and military effectiveness. Today’s action follows extensive training of our military personnel and certification by Secretary Panetta and Admiral Mullen that our military is ready for repeal. As of September 20th, service members will no longer be forced to hide who they are in order to serve our country. Our military will no longer be deprived of the talents and skills of patriotic Americans just because they happen to be gay or lesbian.
I want to commend our civilian and military leadership for moving forward in the careful and deliberate manner that this change requires, especially with our nation at war. I want to thank all our men and women in uniform, including those who are gay or lesbian, for their professionalism and patriotism during this transition. Every American can be proud that our extraordinary troops and their families, like earlier generations that have adapted to other changes, will only grow stronger and remain the best fighting force in the world and a reflection of the values of justice and equality that the define us as Americans.
Gallup researchers began by asking the questions on every American’s mind. Why is there so much anti-Americanism in the Muslim world? Who are the extremists and how do Muslims feel about them? What do Muslims like and dislike about the West? What do Muslim women really want?I've been wanting to find something like this ever since 9/11. It was produced in 2010, before the "Arab Spring" uprisings this year. You can watch the whole 58-minute film at Snag Films.
Crucial policy decisions hang on these questions. They continue to generate passionate disagreements in the public square. Yet for all the heat and controversy, the actual views of the world’s Muslims have been conspicuously missing from this debate.
Now, we have the missing answers and statistics, gathered, parsed, and analyzed not by pundits but by professional researchers.
As part of this groundbreaking six-year project, Gallup conducted tens of thousands of interviews with residents in 35 predominantly Muslim nations, as well as smaller populations in Europe and the USA. The broad extent of the polling has delivered findings for the world’s 1.4 billion Muslims with a plus or minus accuracy of 3%
Focused on the issues of Gender Justice, Terrorism, and Democracy –the film presents this remarkable data deftly, showing how it challenges the popular notion that Muslims and the West are on a collision course. Like the research, the film highlights a shared relationship that is based on facts – not fear.
|Poster by James Montgomery Flagg, who also did the famous|
1917 recruiting poster of Uncle Sam saying "I Want YOU"
Ronald Coleman and a party of kidnapped refugees from a war torn country find themselves crash landed in the Himalayas, rescued and taken to a hidden valley called Shangri-la in Frank Capra's classic LOST HORIZON. Taken from the novel by James Hilton, the story deals with a man who discovers paradise and doesn't know whether to give himself over to it or battle his way back to a civilization from which he was relieved to have escaped in the first place. Coleman was at his romantic best in this film and Capra, having just won an Oscar, never attempted such a visionary film again. Lost footage has been salvaged and somewhat restored from the original print and the result is a remarkable film with a subtlety and spirituality all its own. You'll be moved and mesmerized by the hauntingly beautiful LOST HORIZON.Ingenue Jane Wyatt is most famous, of course, for her later role as Margaret Anderson, the mother in Father Knows Best; and after that as Spock's mom on Star Trek.
|Unknown couple in a tintype - from the 1850's, I'd guess by their costumes.|
The legal status of women under the common law may be briefly stated. It was simply that of a slave. A married woman under the common law owned no property, except after the death of her husband. She could make no contracts, not even for necessaries and not even with the consent of her husband. She could not will or devise her property. Upon her marriage the husband and the wife became one--and that one was the husband. He was master, the wife was a nonentity. The moment she married, he became entitled to all her personal property. He was entitled to the rents and profits of her real estate, which he could sell for his lifetime, or it could be sold for his debts. If she died, the husband still possessed the right to the rents and profits of all her realty for the rest of his life, while at his death she received only a child's part of his personalty and a life right, called a dower, in only one-third of his realty, and for a long time under North Carolina law she could be deprived of even this, for, if he chose, he could sell his realty without her consent and deprive her of dower. She could not appoint a guardian for her children even when she outlived her husband.
As to her personal rights, the married woman came under the absolute control of her husband, who could chastise her if he saw fit, provided the chastisement inflicted no permanent injury. The reason given for this by Judge Pearson as late as 1868 was that it was the husband's duty to "make the wife behave herself," and if he beat her without good cause it was held that the courts would not punish him, because it was too small a matter to take notice of, unless she was permanently injured. The reason seems to be worse than the decision. The husband had the right to imprison his wife, and if in her terror she was driven to take his life, she was guilty of petty treason, as was a slave who took the life of his master, and the penalty as to both was to be burned alive at the stake. This last law was not repealed in North Carolina till 1793, and even after the Revolution, in Iredell County  a widow was thus "drawn and burned at the stake" for the murder of her husband. There were doubtless other cases if the records have not been destroyed by the lapse of time. This was the law in England for many centuries. . . .
If, conditions becoming intolerable, a wife left her husband, at common law he had the unquestioned right to bring her back by force, like any other runaway slave. About twenty years ago, in the famous "Clitheroe case," this was done, but the highest court in England, without any change by statute, reformed the common law and set the woman free. Old-fashioned lawyers were shocked, and asserted that this was the end of marriage; but the prophesied evil has not materialized. . . .
In this State, down to 1899, in at least two sections of our Code "married women, infants, idiots, lunatics, and convicts" were placed in the same category. Practically they have been more or less deemed in that category, in all respects, by decisions of the courts til these have been overruled by the Constitution or by legislative enactment.
A single woman was held fully capable of contracting and controlling her property. On marriage she instantly lost that capacity. The fact of marriage proved her in the eye of the law fit to be classed with idiots and lunatics. In view of the legal status of married women at that time, it may be that there was some force in the idea. . . .
|Unknown male couple in a daguerrotype from the 1850's.|
Kirk had learned that playing with girls’ toys in the clinic was a bad thing to do, but that lesson didn’t extend to the home. So the Murphy home became the scene for the next phase of Kirk’s therapy with Kaytee set up as Kirk’s primary therapist.
“And so then they set me up with the poker chip program,” Kaytee said, referring to a system of punishments and rewards devised by Dr. Lovaas and adapted by Rekers. Mark and Maris would simply remember it as “the chips,” and they always spoke of it with dread. “Well I didn’t know,” their mother sighed. “I trusted these professionals to know what they were doing, you know?”
She explained how it worked: “When Kirk would do something bad, or play with the doll instead of the train or the truck or whatever, he would get a red poker chip. If he picked up a helicopter or an airplane or did a boy thing, then he would get a blue chip. At the end of the day, I would deduct the red from the blue. And then however many blue chips there were, they told me to give him an M&M for each for a reward. And then I had to keep this all written down.”
They also put Mark on the chips even though he wasn’t under treatment. “I think we put Mark on it so that Kirk wouldn’t feel intimidated,” she said. “It was to show Kirk that big brother was on them too.” . . .
“If it (the study) was based on the numbers of chips,” Mark countered, “I screwed with those chips like you wouldn’t believe. I used to take some of his ‘whip it’ chips and put them in my pile.” As he said that, a note of pride crept in his voice. His reasons for doing this would prove to be the study’s fatal flaw: the terrible consequences of collecting too many red chips.
Mark took a deep breath and explained, “My goal was to take the beating for my brother.” Mark had long been accustomed to getting into trouble and being punished for it, and so he reasoned that he could take the beatings more easily than his younger brother. “I saw my brother’s whole back side bruised so badly one time, my dad should have gone to jail for it. Of course, he was somewhat carrying out instructions from the therapist. But my dad whipped my bare ass so many times before that, I figured I could take it. I mean that’s the way we got spanked. You dropped your pants, you bent over the bed, and he whipped your bottom with a belt.”
“My dad would come home, and every Friday we settled up with the chips. It was like ‘you go to your room; you go to your room’ and the whippings came on, it was over. And then we started with a clean slate.”
The chips became a system of terror. . . .
|Andrew Sullivan and Aaron Tone wed in Provincetown, Massachusetts,|
on August 27, 2007.
You can have as many debates about gay marriage as you want, and over the last 22 years of campaigning for it, I’ve had my share. You can debate theology, and the divide between church and state, the issue of procreation, the red herring of polygamy, and on and on. But what it all really comes down to is the primary institution of love. The small percentage of people who are gay or lesbian were born, as all humans are, with the capacity to love and the need to be loved. These things, above everything, are what make life worth living. And unlike every other minority, almost all of us grew up among and part of the majority, in families where the highest form of that love was between our parents in marriage. To feel you will never know that, never feel that, is to experience a deep psychic wound that takes years to recover from. It is to become psychologically homeless. Which is why, I think, the concept of “coming out” is not quite right. It should really be called “coming home.” . . .
But when I first set eyes on my husband, I knew I had lucked out. Some things you simply know. And when we finally got married, a few years later, and our mothers walked us down the makeshift garden aisle, and my sister gave the reading through tears, and one of our beagles howled through the vows, and my father put his arms around me and hugged, I did not hear civilization crumble. I felt a wound being healed. It is a rare privilege to spend your adult life fighting for a right that was first dismissed as a joke, only finally to achieve it in six states and Washington, D.C. But how much rarer to actually stumble upon someone who could make it a reality. And to have it happen to me in my own lifetime! This joy is compounded, deepened, solidified by the knowledge that somewhere, someone just like I was as a kid will be able to look to the future now and not see darkness—but the possibility of love and home. That, I realized, was really what I had been fighting for for two decades: to heal the child I had once been—and the countless children in the present and future whose future deserved, needed, begged for a model of commitment and responsibility and love. . . .
And in the years of struggle, as more and more heterosexuals joined us, we all began finally to see that this was not really about being gay. It was about being human.
Just like being gay is no longer necessarily about being an outsider. It is about being an American.
|Chely Wright at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, 2010|
When you're in hiding, you have nowhere to turn because nobody knows your secret, and when you're in pain, you can't reach out to anybody. . . .
I have a network now, whereas before I didn't have anybody. And that is the beautiful benefit of living in the light.
"I deem it to be honest and fair, and I do so direct and require, now that it is legal, that only married couples may live together, either in rectories or elsewhere as a clergy couple living in the midst of our faith community," wrote the bishop, who had earlier welcomed the new law's passage.Other Episcopal bishops in New York are still weighing the matter in discussions with clergy and laity, and have not set such a firm rule. Presbyterians, Lutherans, and other denominations in states where same-sex marriages are permitted are also reconsidering their positions on church weddings or blessings of same-sex couples, clergy as well as laypeople.
Provenzano told Episcopal News Service in a telephone interview July 11 that after he consulted with the leadership of the diocese "it was clear that the consensus of thinking was that there ought to be some time frame" on fulfilling his requirement. "If we left it completely open-ended, it might not be acted on" and that inaction would create a "disparity," he said, noting that he would not allow a heterosexual clergy couple to live together outside of marriage.
The bishop said he has not received any criticism from the gay and lesbian clergy of the diocese. "At least as it applies to the Diocese of Long Island, I don't think it's going to feel to anyone that I am being unpastoral or punitive in any way or creating a hardship for them by saying nine months," he said. "I suspect that most of our partnered gay and lesbian clergy have been living in committed relationships for a fairly long period of time and that the concept of being married is exactly what they've been waiting for to happen, so the church moving in this direction with them is welcomed."
|"Stop the Race Mixing March of the Antichrist" - |
segrationists demonstrate in Little Rock, 1957
We have received a report concerning you. It has been reported that you had permitted a man to perform a homosexual act (fellatio) on you. Also, that you related that you find members of the male sex attractive; that you have been in bed with men; and that you have enjoyed embracing them. Is this report true?New film:
More striking in his correspondence, however, is an almost magisterial serenity. He exhibits an unshakable and unmistakably American confidence that all the great and mighty, no matter their number or power, must bow to one weak man who has the Founders' promise on his side. "We are honorable people who deal with others honorably and in good faith," he insisted to the Un-American Activities Committee. "We expect to be dealt with in the same fashion -- especially by our governmental officials." There you hear the pipsqueak, indomitable voice of equality.
For Kameny's papers to join Thurgood Marshall's and Daniel Patrick Moynihan's, and for his signs to join Jefferson's writing desk and Lincoln's inkwell, seems fitting. All of those men understood that the words of 1776 set in motion a moral engine unlike any the world had ever seen; and all understood that the logic of equality could be delayed but not denied. Kameny, like them, believed that the Declaration of Independence means exactly what it says, and like them he made its promise his purpose.
My partner, Michael, and I are among the millions who owe some large measure of our happiness to Kameny's pursuits. This Thanksgiving found me grateful that one pariah fought back, never imagining he could fail; even more grateful to live in a country with a conscience; most grateful of all to know that there are generations of Franklin Kamenys yet to be born.
On September 28, 2009, at 1:40 p.m., God’s messengers visited Rick Perry. . . . The two Texas pastors . . . told Perry of God’s grand plan for Texas. A chain of powerful prophecies had proclaimed that Texas was “The Prophet State,” anointed by God to lead the United States into revival and Godly government. And the governor would have a special role. . . .
At the end of their meeting, Perry asked the two pastors to pray over him. As the pastors would later recount, the Lord spoke prophetically as Schlueter laid his hands on Perry, their heads bowed before a painting of the Battle of the Alamo. Schlueter “declared over [Perry] that there was a leadership role beyond Texas and that Texas had a role beyond what people understand,” Long later told his congregation.
So you have to wonder: Is Rick Perry God’s man for president? . . .
The movement’s top prophets and apostles believe they have a direct line to God. Through them, they say, He communicates specific instructions and warnings. When mankind fails to heed the prophecies, the results can be catastrophic: earthquakes in Japan, terrorist attacks in New York, and economic collapse. On the other hand, they believe their God-given decrees have ended mad cow disease in Germany and produced rain in drought-stricken Texas.
Their beliefs can tend toward the bizarre. Some consider Freemasonry a “demonic stronghold” tantamount to witchcraft. The Democratic Party, one prominent member believes, is controlled by Jezebel and three lesser demons. Some prophets even claim to have seen demons at public meetings. They’ve taken biblical literalism to an extreme. In Texas, they engage in elaborate ceremonies involving branding irons, plumb lines and stakes inscribed with biblical passages driven into the earth of every Texas county.
If they simply professed unusual beliefs, movement leaders wouldn’t be remarkable. But what makes the New Apostolic Reformation movement so potent is its growing fascination with infiltrating politics and government. The new prophets and apostles believe Christians—certain Christians—are destined to not just take “dominion” over government, but stealthily climb to the commanding heights of what they term the “Seven Mountains” of society, including the media and the arts and entertainment world. They believe they’re intended to lord over it all. As a first step, they’re leading an “army of God” to commandeer civilian government.
In Rick Perry, they may have found their vessel. And the interest appears to be mutual.
|Gay Activists Alliance dance, New York City, 1971|
It was the most shocking, and to many Americans, the most surprising liberation movement yet. Under the slogan, "Out of the closets and into the streets," thousands of homosexuals, male and female, were proudly confessing what they had long hidden. They were, moreover, moving into direct confrontation with conventional society. Their battle was far from won. But in 1971, militant homosexuals showed that they were prepared to fight it . . . .
|Gay pride march, Christopher Street, 1971|
This blog deserves a well-earned recognition: it has just about a little bit of everything; from social commentary to entertainment, from male erotica to political opinions. But most importantly, Russ Manley is one very dedicated LGBT rights defender living in the homophobic wilderness that is Texas. I can imagine how hard it must be to face ignorance, superstition and homophobia every day of your life living in a place like Texas…and I do because I went to college there. So this award is given in view of all that and more…may you continue to post ‘till you drop...u are doing a terrific job!
|Mrs. Ford poses barefoot on the Cabinet Room table, two days before her husband was succeeded by Jimmy Carter. As a young woman, she was a dancer with the Martha Graham company in New York City for a time.|
Marylouise Oates, who was a society columnist for The Los Angeles Times was a longtime supporter of LGBT full equality and devoted to taking care of those with AIDS. She contacted her friend heiress Wallis Annenberg to see if she would be willing to CoChair the 1985 Commitment to Life Dinner knowing it would open new doors for the cause. Wallis, after some reflection, agreed to join the effort. The two of them thought that the perfect CoChair for Wallis would be First Lady Betty Ford. However, she was well known for refusing to do events except for her clinic. Nevertheless, Wallis agreed to call her Palm Springs friend.
Without hesitation, First Lady Betty Ford not only agreed to CoChair the dinner but also said she would be present for the evening. In 1985 to have someone of Betty Ford's caliber come to the AIDS Project Los Angeles Dinner was astounding. Most prominent political people wouldn't touch the issue and many wouldn't even touch people with HIV/AIDS. Her decision to join us in the battle against the epidemic was courageous, ground breaking and historic.
Because of her involvement, the event took on a new life. For the first time in AIDS Project Los Angeles history they raised over a million dollars in one night. Those in the room will never forget when First Lady Betty Ford rose that evening to the podium. The ovation and tears of gratitude seemed to last forever. As she stood that night among us, she gave us a dignity and respectability like no other person before her. Overwhelmed with the response, she proceeded with a moving and humble speech that made us love her even more.
For all the accolades that the former First Lady richly deserves, I will never forget that she stood up against HIV/AIDS and helped us turn the corner. Thank you, Mrs. Ford.