Thursday, May 28, 2009

Prom queen

It seems a high school in California has elected a guy this year as prom queen. See Fairfax High's prom queen is a guy.

So, what do you think about this? Is it right to have a male prom queen (or a female prom king - for that matter)? Or should some things remain gender specific?

UPDATE: Results of the prom queen poll

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Battle lines are drawn

By now, I'm sure that everybody who reads this blog knows that the California supreme court has ruled in favor of proposition 8 while keeping the 18,000 marriages performed before November 4th intact. Not really much of a surprise as the challenge to proposition 8 was considered a long shot at best.

But, it does leave California in a tenuous position of recognizing (past) but not allowing (future) gay marriages. This all but guarantees that this fight is not over by any means. This issue will be put before California voters again - it's not a matter of if, rather when, be it 2010, 2012, etc.

Truth be told, I'm not really sure where I stand on the action of the California supreme court. On one hand, I believe this is as it should be. While I support same sex marriage - I much prefer these rights be conferred via legislative rather than judicial action.

On the other hand, it's easy to take a side when the argument is largely philosophical in nature without affecting me personally. But, once you get to know real people who are directly impacted by this decision - things get much more fuzzy. And my heart goes out to those who are hurting over this.

I will say that I am disappointed in the official response that the LDS church gave. Not that it was a surprise or anything. It's just that the mere issuance of any sort of statement was like rubbing salt into the wound. I would much preferred that the LDS church had remained silent - and leave those who are mourning to mourn in peace.

But, I also believe that by issuing this statement, the LDS church has thrown down the gauntlet and declared that they will be there to once again take a stand whenever this issue is laid out on the political battleground.

And yes, I did refer to the LDS church as them and not us or we. For when this battle again rises up - I will be standing with my queer friends rather than my church friends.

But, for now, I will honor my baptismal covenants to mourn with those that mourn and comfort those that stand in need of comfort.

I do have a question that, perhaps, somebody knows the answer to. California will recognize the marriages performed before the November election. What about same sex marriages performed outside the state of California - will it recognize those? If so, will it make a difference if the marriage was performed before or after November 4, 2008?

Reactions elsewhere in the Mormon queerosphere

A Crow's View : LDS Church Response to CA Supreme Court Decision on Prop. 8
Clark Johnson : My Feelings on Prop 8
David Baker : Bridging the Divide - A Shot at Redemption for All
drakames : Blog Rally
Grant Haws : America - 51% Gets You Anything
John Gustav-Wrathall : Still Married
Max Power : Gay Marriage Rally
Mr. Fob : A Tiny Little Victory
Original Mohomie : Down With "Equality!"
Scot : California Decision on the Proposition

(please let me know if I missed any)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Day of decision

Today the California Supreme Court is expected to announce its decision regarding the outcome of proposition 8. This could be
  1. Uphold proposition 8 and and invalidate the 18,000 same sex marriages performed before November 4th
  2. Uphold proposition 8 but continue to recognize the 18,000 same sex marriages performed before November 4th
  3. Overturn proposition 8
Rally's are planned across the nation - if interested, visit the Day of Decision web site to find one near you. These rally's will either be celebrations or protests depending upon the outcome

What is your opinion? Vote on right.

UPDATE: Here are the results from the poll

Sunday, May 24, 2009

OK, I lied

I know I said I wasn't going to blog about Kris Allen anymore - but I came across this video that I just had to share. It's so sweet (once you get past the 30 second commercial)

Friday, May 22, 2009

Kris Allen central

I set a blog traffic record yesterday. More people visited my blog on Thursday than I typically have in an average week - during the past 3 days I've had nearly as many visits as I typically get in a two-week period. And most of them came from google search from people wanting to know if Kris Allen is Mormon (he's not Mormon, btw)

Although not the focus of my blog - since so many people are visiting my blog looking for information about Kris Allen, I've compiled a list of factoids as a public service
  • Kris Allen was born June 21, 1985 in Jacksonville, Arkansas to Kimberly and Neil Allen.
  • He has one younger brother named Daniel who is a student and cheerleading coach at the University of Central Arkansas.
  • Kris attended Murrell Taylor Elementary School, Fuller Middle School and Mills University Studies High School, where he was active in the school's orchestra as a viola player and later went on to win a spot in his state's all-state orchestra.
  • Kris taught himself how to play the guitar at age 13, and is also proficient with the piano and the ukulele.
  • In 2007, he self-produced an album entitled Brand New Shoes with college friends and bandmates Michael Holmes (drums) and Chase Erwin (bass).
  • Songs from the album began being widely distributed during his time on Idol.
  • Allen is a devout Christian. He was a worship leader at New Life Church in Maumelle, Arkansas, as well as at the Chi Alpha campus ministry of the University of Central Arkansas, where he was a business major.
  • He has done missionary work around the world, including in Burma, Morocco, Mozambique, South Africa, Spain and Thailand.
  • On September 26, 2008, Kris married longtime girlfriend Katy O'Connell Allen
  • For his American Idol audition, he sang "A Song for You" by Leon Russell; although, I believe, that audition was not aired during the audition part of the season. In fact, he was only seen in Hollywood week while singing "I Want You Back" by the The Jackson 5 as part of a group. Neither of his solo's during Hollywood week were aired. His first solo performance that was seen on the show was during the top 36 semi-finals when he sang "Man in the Mirror" by Michael Jackson - Kris was truly the dark horse in this season.
  • Kris was in the bottom 3 only once when it was down to the top 5 - he sang "The Way You Look Tonight" by Frank Sinatra
Some have tried to claim that Adam's alleged gayness (although, seriously, does anybody really have any doubt?) played a factor in Kris's upset. Personally I don't think so. Rumor's of Adam's perferences have circulated throughout the season. He wouldn't have gotten as far as he did if that had truly been a factor. I think what happened is that Danny Gokey's fans were probably more likely to move to Kris than to Adam. I think the same would have been true had it come down to Adam and Danny with Kris fans voting for Danny. I just think their style appeals to a wider audience than Adam's glamor rock god image. And, Adam's proclivity for screeching during some of his performances turned a lot of people off. I do think Adam has a beautiful voice - as long as he keeps it toned down; and, he has an incredible range. In any case, I don't think we've seen the last of Adam.

This will likely be my last post about Kris Allen - but no promises . . .

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Fixated on Kris Allen

I'm very happy Kris Allen is the next American Idol - but I am genuinely surprised. And I'm not the only one - the look on Simon's face was priceless.

Speaking of Kris Allen - the last two days, my blog has been inundated with people googling for information about Kris Allen. Seriously, at least 80% of my blog traffic the last couple of days has been from google search with keywords like
is kris allen mormom?
kris allen mormon
is kris allen married w/children
kris allen married with a child
how did kris allen meet his wife
kris allen religion lds
kris allen american idol morman
kris allen is he mormon
kris allen lds
Why are people so obsessed with Kris Allen and if he is a Mormon? For the record, in case anybody is reading my blog for the first time - Kris Allen is not a Mormon. But, he is the new American Idol!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The next American Idol

A poll on the Gay Christian Network has Adam and Kris tied; so, I was wondering how they might fare in the Mormon queerosphere.

I've added a poll - who do you think is the next American Idol?

I'm keeping this poll up until Wednesday - just before we hear the results.

And for the record - Kris Allen is not a Mormon - which is still a popular google search finding my blog.

UPDATE: Here are the results from the poll

Monday, May 18, 2009


2 ½ years ago I wrote a poem which I titled Alone. After years of suppressing and denying who I am - I was finally coming to terms with the fact that I am gay. However, I had not yet found anybody else who was like me - gay, but trying to stay active in the LDS church. I was feeling very much alone - at church, I felt like I was alone in a crowded room.

Beck and I were reminiscing recently. He is not only the first and only MoHo I've met in person - but he is also the first MoHo I talked with on the phone. I still remember that day - I was so nervous. Beck did most of the talking. He would try to ask me questions, but I would give monosyllabic responses.

I've grown in so many ways the last 2 ½ years. I'm actually able to use the word "gay" out loud when referring to myself. later, I've found others like me and I've been active in the Mormon queerosphere. I'm overcoming the shame of being gay.

But, I am still battling these feelings of loneliness. On that front I've made no progress at all; in fact, I'm wondering if I've even slipped backwards - if that's even possible.

I go to church each week and I interact with the other brethren at church. But, any semblance of friendship seems contrived and forced. Truthfully, if it weren't for our shared church membership, we probably wouldn't even give each other the time of day. I don't mean that as a criticism in any way - they are good people. It's just that I don't feel like I have anything in common with them; and, our conversations are short and superficial.

I've tried reaching out elsewhere. I joined a photography club - but it's pretty much fizzled out. It's just so difficult for me since I'm a complete and total social retard. I feel like I'm a nice guy and people like me once they get to know me - I just can't get to first base with anybody with whom I might have common interests.

I have my friends in the queerosphere - but it's just not the same as a flesh and blood friend who lives nearby. I really enjoyed my visit with Beck last week - but it's been bitter sweet as it underscores what I am missing in my life - someone I can just hang out with; someone I can talk to; someone I can just be myself around without having to maintain the charade.

Is this really so unreasonable? As a married man, is it selfish of me to want a close male friend? My wife has her outside interests and groups of ladies she talks with on the phone and meets with on a weekly basis. Why is it so hard for men to do so? Why is it so hard for me?

I'm not looking for pity (well, maybe just a little) - I'm just trying to figure out what I should do.

Perhaps I should just accept the inevitable - I'm never going to have a close friend nearby that I can just hang out with. My friendships will remain virtual with the occasional physical visit.

I'm such a pathetic excuse for a man.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

American Idol

So, it's come down to Adam and Kris

I think Adam is more comfortable on stage. I like his singing - that is, until he starts screeching. He's fun to watch - but I don't think I could listen to him on the radio.

I think Kris is more humble and likable and marketable. He doesn't have as much stage presence; but, I really like his singing and I could listen to him on the radio.

I think Adam will win

I hope Kris will win (and not just because he's the cutest of the two)

But, at this point, it's too close to call. They call it a singing competition - but, in reality, it's a popularity contest; and, they each have a huge fan base. What makes it interesting is that many people are fans of both - so who will they favor? That's anyone's guess.

Maybe I should phone in my vote next week - nah! I've never voted on American Idol so why start now?

In either case, I think the world is their oyster as they both have a chance at a promising career in the music industry ahead of them.

. . .

And, "kris allen mormon" is still the most popular google search in my blogging stats. Kris Allen is not Mormon. Sheesh - why are people so obsessed with making Kris a Mormon? Mormon's don't have an exclusive on that cute humble clean cut all american boy look ya know.

Gay ducks

It seems the gay lifestyle has spread to the blue duck population - thereby derailing plans to repopulate the species in Britain. It seems there is one remaining female blue duck (Cherry) and two male blue ducks (Ben and Jerry). Problem is, Ben and Jerry have the hots for each other and are ignoring Cherry. Read the story here.

This is what happens in countries where gay marriage is legal.

Imagine what will happen here in the good ol U.S.ofA when gay marriage is legalized - we may just end up with a herd of gay buffalo's roaming around Yellowstone park.

Abelard's thoughts

I've been kind of 'out of it' for the past couple of months - with two children getting married, work issues, and life in general.

So, what's been going on in my life - besides being laid off, that is?

My youngest daughter was married in March here in Texas. My youngest son was married in April in Orlando, Florida. After the wedding, we spent 3 days at DisneyWorld before returning to Texas. Might seem a bit extravagant for someone who was coming home to be laid off from work - but the trip was already planned and the condo and tickets already paid for.

Although a bit late to the party - here are my thoughts on current events
  • Miss California is certainly entitled to her opinion. Her stand on gay marriage very well may have cost her the Miss American crown - isn't that enough? Yet, I keep reading what a horrible person she is. Sheesh people - let it go.
  • Perez Hilton is an idiot and does more harm than good for gay rights - in my own most humble opinion.
  • At the risk of sounding crass ... people die from the flu every year - this year some people will die from the swine flu. Can we stop the chicken little the sky is falling routine? I'm reminded of the West Nile Virus craze a couple of years ago. The mosquito's are still here and people are still getting sick - but nobody talks about it anymore.
  • So, Obama isn't turning out to be the big gay rights advocate people hoped he would be - is anybody really surprised?
  • I'm convinced the streets in Orlando, Florida are like the stairs in Harry Potter that keep moving.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Fear mongering or legitimate concern?

On of the arguments we often hear against gay marriage is that it will open the door for other deviant relationships - such as pedophilia, bestiality, polygamy, yada, yada, yada.

Those of us for gay marriage tend to dismiss such arguments as ridiculous and absurd and wonder how they come up with such drivel.

But, is the truth somewhere in between these extremes?

Case in point - The Queers United blog had a recent post titled Open Forum: Group Marriage - The Next Civil Rights Fight?

Is there legitimate cause for some amount of concern as gay marriage becomes more and more accepted in society? If we change the definition of marriage from that of being between one man and one woman - does it open the door to polygamy and polyamory? Where does it stop?

Are we headed towards being like the Denobulan society in the Star Trek universe? Where the males have multiple wives who, in turn, each have multiple husbands - with the added twist where a person can have multiple wives and/or husbands who, in turn, can each have multiple husbands and/or wives?

While I do support same sex marriage - I don't think I could support polygamy and/or polyamory as a civil right. Our whole society is based on the idea of parents coming in pairs. Supporting same sex marriage is only a minor tweak to our traditional view of marriage.

To support a polyamorous group marriage brings with it an untold amount of baggage. For example, just think of the legal difficulties. What if one of the polyamorous partners decides they no longer want to be in the relationship? What does a divorce look like? What about situations involving children and child support? It's Pandora's box. Like Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof - it's asking us to stretch ourselves too thin.

Unfortunately, reading the comments to the Queers United blog post - I seem to be in the minority in my views. And this concerns me. It shows that, in some sense, the opponants for gay marriage are right - that allowing men to marry men and women to marry women may be just the beginning.

More and more I'm becoming of the mind set that government should get out of the marriage business altogether. Let the government define civil unions for all relationships and let churches define marriage however they want with the power to reject and expel those who do not conform to their view of marriage.

An afternoon with Beck

Beck's business travels brought him to Texas this week - and we were able to spend a couple of hours together yesterday afternoon.
  • I showed him my garden
  • I introduced him to good ol Texas BBQ
  • I showed him a few of the local sights
  • We hugged
  • We talked
  • We talked some more
  • We hugged
... and then he had to leave

This was Beck's second visit to Texas.

So now . . .

Counting Beck . . .

The number of MoHo's I have now met in real life . . .

is a grand total of . . .

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A thought

I don't know if this is an original idea of mine - or if it is something I read on some other blog that has come to the forefront of my mind. But, it's something I've been thinking about lately.

It's no secret that the LDS church has incurred the wrath of the gay community. It seems to me that, prior to proposition 8 in California, the LDS church was pretty much ignored by the gay community - perhaps because of it's presumed more compassionate view, compared to other churches, separating attraction from behavior. But, since proposition 8, all eyes in the gay community are focused squarely on the LDS church.

Most of the opposition has been relatively peaceful in nature - limited to protesting at temples and churches, negative ads and articles, etc.. There was that incident where an envelop containing white powder was mailed to a couple of temples; and, there have been a few reports of chapels being vandalized; although, it is worth noting that there is no proof that it is the gays doing the vandalizing. Those in favor of proposition 8 took a 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend' approach as we teamed up with churches who are very much against the LDS church and refuse to accept us as Christians. What better way to stick it to the Mormon's than to hurt them in some way and have your common enemy get the blame. . . . But, that's not the focus of this blog post.

Those who are familar with the Book of Mormon will recognize the pride cycle where the Nephites start out being righteous and prosperous, but then pride and arrogance sets in and they drifted towards evil. The Lord often allowed the Lamanites to persecute and go to war with the Nephites in order to humble them.

The thought I blog about is contemplating if we are seeing that pride cycle in the modern LDS church. As a people - have we become prideful in our self righteousness? Have we become arrogant in our 'we're right and everybody else is wrong' view of the gospel? Is the Lord allowing those, for whom we should have compassion and understanding, to persecute us? Is God telling us
When I told you to stand up for marriage - I didn't mean for you to demonize a group of people who are trying to accomplish the same goal of committed marriage relationships.
Just a thought . . .

Monday, May 11, 2009


"The saints in California saw more than their share of persecution for simply being Mormon, what with defacing temples and all"

"The prop 8 crowd is a god-less bunch. Sure, there are a few who try to mingle scripture with the philosophies of men - but, for the most part, they are god-less"

"At work, if you have a manager who is of that persuasion and they find out you are a Mormon - your job could be in jeopardy."
The lesson topic for priesthood meeting yesterday was "Responding to Persecution with Faith and Courage" - and these were a few of the comments I heard from others.

And while others sat their nodding their heads in agreement - I sat there stoic and silent, feeling more and more isolated from the men who should be my brethren. Reflecting on the irony of listening to a lesson on dealing with persecution while feeling persecuted by those in the room around me.

I am ashamed at my inability to think of something to say to counter these statements. Hindsight is always 20-20; and, I can think of things now that I could have said then. But, now it is an opportunity lost.

I've been fortunate. Homosexuality is a topic I've seldom heard discussed in my ward. Plus, it was mother's day - I was not prepared for this discussion. I sat there wondering what these men would think if they knew someone of that persuasion was sitting in their midst. Would they reject me as readily as they do the prop 8 crowd if they knew that I was one of that crowd.

I guess one advantage of being so deeply closeted and able to blend in is that I find out what others truly think - no matter how ugly. A disadvantage of being so deeply closeted and able to blend in is that I feel increasingly isolated and alone among those who profess to be my friends.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Fitting the mold

I received the following email yesterday from a member of the stake high council over seminary:
I told one of the teachers today that next year is the Book of Mormon. This is a critical year in helping the youth understand the Book of Mormon and create a basis for their testimony to develop. If they take it lightly, I believe they will struggle with their testimonies as they get older.
I don't exactly know why - but this bothers me. It underscores an attitude which, I believe, is prevalent in the church. It suggests a cookie cutter approach implying that if you don't fit the mold then you can't be a good Mormon. Because, of course, all good Mormon boy's and girls
  1. Attend all 4 years of seminary faithfully
  2. After high school graduation, go off to BYU
  3. [if a boy] Serve a 2 year mission
  4. Get married in the temple
  5. Graduate from BYU
  6. Have a bushel of kids
The thing is - people are different, not everybody fits that mold. Seminary can be a very faith building experince for some. But not everybody responds the same way to the same stimulus. What sort of subliminal message are we sending when we tell students that if they don't attend seminary faithfully then they are taking it lightly and will struggle with their testimony when they get older?

We have a couple of youth in our ward whom I believe are very good people and in whom I have a lot of respect - but who struggle in their seminary attendance. As a seminary teacher, I am grateful for the days that they do attend; on Sunday I often put my arm around them and encourage them to come - but I don't think less of them when they don't. I know these kids very well, I've worked with them in other callings as a youth leader. I view them as a whole person, not just through my seminary teacher filter.

The first few years following high school is a very critical time in the life of a young man or woman - and it is no big secret that it is also a time when the church loses people at an alarmingly high rate. It's been my personal observation that many of those we are losing just arn't fitting the mold. And, I find myself wondering if we are approaching this in the wrong way. Instead of looking back at their younger years and devising ways to force fit everybody into the same mold - perhaps we should be examining how we can better meet the needs of those who march to a different drum.

Maybe it's just me - but I imagine the reasoning used to justify why we need everybody to 'fit the mold' is very similar to the reasoning Lucifer used when he presented his plan at the great council in heaven - when he offered himself as an amendment to the Father's plan of saving mankind that would not respect our agency.