Author Archives: cypheroftyr

Reteaching Gender and Sexuality – Put This On The Map

Our current project, Reteaching Gender & Sexuality, is a message about queer youth action and resilience. The video was generated to contribute additional queer/trans youth voices to the national conversations about queer/trans youth lives. Reteaching Gender & Sexuality intends to steer the conversation beyond the symptom of bullying, to consider systemic issues and deeper beliefs about gender and sexuality that impact queer youth. We invite you to share the video with your friends, family and networks; we invite you to share with us what THIS issue means to you!

PUT THIS ON THE {MAP} is reteaching gender and sexuality to professionals, such as school administrators, social workers, health care providers and juvenile probation staff. With youth voices at the forefront, our team of educators use dynamic, relevant and informative professional development trainings and workshops to shift the conversation about gender and sexuality in our communities. Find out more on this site about our award-winning pilot documentary, our upcoming tour, and our professional development work.



Our 2011 Spring Tour is officially over! From North Bay to Nashville, Buffalo to Big Rapids – we met amazing people and heard about projects happening all over the U.S. and Canada.

We’re now planning a Fall 2011 and Spring 2012 Tour. Contact us if you are interesting in planning a stop on your campus or in your community! We can screen our first pilot documentary PUT THIS ON THE {MAP},  lead workshops and panel discussions, and capture your stories.  On campuses, we’ve worked with departments, student clubs, research institutes, clinics, and centers. We also offer professional development training for practitioners and students working in human services or education.

If you are interested in learning more about bringing Reteaching Gender and Sexuality to your town, contact: info@putthisonthemap.org

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A Sports Executive Leaves the Safety of His Shadow Life – Repost from the NYT

Joshua Lott for The New York Times

Rick Welts, the president of the Phoenix Suns, hopes his coming out can break the silence surrounding homosexuality in men’s team sports.

By
Published: May 15, 2011

Last month, in a Midtown office adorned with sports memorabilia, two longtime friends met for a private talk. David Stern, the commissioner of the National Basketball Association, sipped his morning coffee, expecting to be asked for career advice. Across from him sat Rick Welts, the president and chief executive of the Phoenix Suns, who had come to New York not to discuss careers, but to say, finally, I am gay.

It’s OK to be Takei!

Actor George Takei has an excellent response to the idiotic bill in Tennessee prohibiting people from saying the word Gay.

Support George! Fight back at http://bit.ly/dontsaygay

George Takei takes on the Tennessee Legislature and its “Don’t Say Gay” bill, in the way only George Takei can!

A bill now pending in Tennessee would prohibit teachers in that state from discussing homosexuality in the classroom. The so-called “don’t say gay” law is premised on the misguided belief that, by not talking about gay people, they can simply make us disappear.

George is here to tell Tennessee, and all the LGBT youth and teachers who would be affected by this law, that he is here for you. In fact, he is lending his name to the cause. Any time you need to say the word “gay,” you can simply say “Takei.”

You can buy T-shirts and other items that say “It’s OK to be Takei”, to wear and display with pride and to show Tennessee and the world that you’re against censorship and bigotry….

All the proceeds from the sales of these items will be donated to charity. Have a TAKEI old time!

2010 in review

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A helper monkey made this abstract painting, inspired by your stats.

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 7,000 times in 2010. That’s about 17 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 54 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 12 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 1,000kb. That’s about a picture per month.

The busiest day of the year was October 22nd with 487 views. The most popular post that day was About The Project.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, networkedblogs.com, community.livejournal.com, theatlantic.com, and cypheroftyr.wordpress.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for spirit day october 20, we got your back, october 20 spirit day, we got your back project, and october 20, 2010 wear purple.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

About The Project September 2010
3 comments

2

Spirit Day – October 20, 2010 October 2010

3

Call for Submissions September 2010
2 comments

4

For Straight Allies September 2010

5

How to Share Your Story September 2010

You are Loved…by Gennie Z

I guess you could say that I’m not your standard bullying victim. I’ve never been physically assaulted. I’ve been called names, but ‘fortunately’ that had nothing to do with my sexual preferences. As far as bullying goes, I’ve been lucky.

I wasn’t attacked. I was invisible.

I had a few friends growing up in elementary and middle school that I could spend time with. In high school I discovered the music department, and made friends with some of the other ‘music geeks’, though at times it seemed they were just tolerating my presence because they felt sorry for me. I later switched to another high school, where I was an outcast because I was quiet, shy, and a good student. I spent my lunch breaks sitting on a bench in the sun, wearing sunglasses and pretending to be asleep because it was better than being rejected, than admitting that I was lonely.

Most bullying is acknowledged as physical and verbal abuse. But often people forget the emotional bullying, which leads to mental abuse. No, I wasn’t attacked. But the isolation, the loneliness, began to make me think that there was something wrong with me. That something about who I was, was simply unlikeable. My confidence and self-esteem plummeted, and I stayed shy and quiet, trying to stay out of the way of people who were more important than me. Because clearly, I wasn’t someone worth knowing. It was better for me to stand back and let the people who were right, and strong, and good take the spotlight.

That wasn’t to say I was always miserable. I was happy with the few friends I had, to the point of being clingy. When I was happy, I threw myself into the feeling, desperate to hold on to it. Which made the days when I was lonely, sad, and miserable, even worse.

As I hit my mid-teens, things started to get complicated. My friends and family began to make comments about my sexual preferences, hinting that they thought I was gay. I wasn’t very feminine as a teenager, because I didn’t know how to be. And something about that made the people who were important to me, as well as the people who weren’t, believe that I was hiding my interests.

Continue reading

New Video from Sally Goldner in Australia

Sally Goldner is trans, bi and poly woman who began breaking down different closet doors 15 years ago. She is an active participant in the queer and allied community in Melbourne, Australia, a stand-up comic (in hiatus),  community radio presenter and occasional drummer. Outside of the community, she has is a mild-mannered accountant specialising in the not-for-profit sector.

 

GetEqual Youth response to President Obama’s message to lgbt youth

Watch: Anti-Gay Bullied Teens GetEQUAL Message To Obama, Congress

by David Badash on October 26, 2010 · Comments (0)

in Civil Rights,Gay Agenda,Legal Issues,Legislation,Marriage,Media,News,Politics

Post image for Watch: Anti-Gay Bullied Teens GetEQUAL Message To Obama, Congress GetEQUAL co-founder Robin McGehee reached out to three icons of gay teen activism, Ceara Sturgis, Constance McMillen, and Will Phillips, all of whom found themselves victims of anti-gay bullying and harassment, and brought them together to make this video message to President Obama and Congress. It’s stunning, heartwarming, and simple: “Display the courageousness that these youth have shown by producing the change they have promised.”

Thank you!

A big thanks to everyone who came out tonight to our launch event and video shoot extravaganza! Thank you to everyone who’s contributed so far, please read the posts and view the videos contributed so far.

Thank you again to our wonderful host, Fard M. Thank you for your hospitality and for letting us your space to record videos this evening. As a reminder, we can’t do this without YOUR stories folks. We’ve gotten some great stories but we need them to keep coming in.

Please send your posts or video links to us at wegotyourbackproject@gmail.com

Look for the video recorded tonight to be up on the site soon.

High School sucked … by Erin

I went to a school in the exurbs of Detroit (for those who know the area Northwest Oakland County), one of schools that is a selling point for the nice houses in the newly sprouted subdivisions.  It was one of those schools that even offered a variety of support groups for kids who  may have had various problems.  It should have been a great place for a kid with some of the “issues” I had (new girl, introvert, depression, queer). My junior year was miserable, but my senior year, I started to pull my self together and started to be more out publicly, and then there were problems…

The first problem was when the student newspaper was going to do a story on the queer students at WLC, and I was expressly forbidden to use my real name during the interview; because, I might not really be gay (besides, I don’t look like a gay),  and the school doesn’t want to be responsible for me if I come out.

I don’t listen very well, so I came out in other ways than in a HS newspaper. I came out in AP English, I told people at lunch, I called people on their hetero-sexist bullshit. And it caused problems…leading to a moment where I was walking the gauntlet of junior and senior guys (aka the hallway to get from English to US Government)  and a group of guys circled round and told me how they were going to “make me straight”. I was rescued by a sympathetic teacher, but when I sought to have the problem addressed. The school councilor told me because she didn’t think I was really a lesbian, the guys who threatened my safety in school were completely unpunished.

The Safe School Improvement Act of 2010 should be passed, so that kids can feel safe going from English to US Government. So that don’t have their identity invalidated by a school professional. And so things are actually made better for kids now; rather than telling kids it might get better later.

“Trans-nationality”

I am multiethnic and transgendered. I am the human label-breaker.

I grew up hearing that I’m half Japanese and half Jewish. For the
observer, this genetic algebra equated to a whole person. I wasn’t put
in a box- I was sliced in half; subdivided and subjugated. In truth I
carry twice the heritage and just as much angst.

In life, I check the box marked [other].

I am a gender-ninja, hiding in plain-sight. The Japanese American
community isn’t one that is particularly open to talking about…
anything. Because of this, I have never come out in public. It’s not
that everyone in the community is closed-minded. Culturally, it is
seen as intrusive to either ask or tell something so personal about
yourself. Though frustrating, it afforded me the room to grow.

My cultural heritage taught me the importance of community and the
bravery to stand up in the face of ignorance and hate. It is a comfort
to know that wherever my journey takes me or how dark it becomes, I
belong to something bigger. My ethnic identity helped to build a
foundation upon which to discover myself. What I developed was the
resolve to self-advocate; to believe that a world without me, my
perspective and my voice, would result in even more generations of
We,the lost children of a Black and White, Male and Female, straight
and narrow world.

Be you. Be us. Be free. I’ve got your back.

-Anonymous

Ann’s story

For a long time (over 10 years), my historical narrative skipped from
fall of 1997 to fall of 1998 (fall of 8th grade to fall of 9th grade,
for reference). Spring of 1998, the concluding term of my 8th grade
year, didn’t happen. I did not think about it, I did not care to
remember anything that happened that semester, I actively refused to
admit that it existed.

I was a weird kid, I admit that: awkward, too shy for my own good (and
social-wellbeing), ugly and skinny-chubby in that A Rush of Estrogen
to the Hips kind of way, and, worst of all, admittedly naive with my
own sexuality… not to mention the sexual temperature of the average
American eighth grader. I knew the words they were using when they
called me “lesbo” and “homo”, and I knew they were “scary”, but I
didn’t know why they were so very wrong.
Continue reading

A message from Jamie

Originally submitted for the It Gets Better Project, Jamie shared his video for We Got Your Back.

Thank you for sharing your story!

David Urqhart

Mr. Urqhart shared this video with us, originally done for the IDAHO exhibit in Sydney, Australia earlier in the year.

 

Thank you again for sharing this video David.

11 facts about school bullying from Do Something

11 facts about school bullying

  1. An estimated 2 out of 3 teens are verbally or physically harassed or assaulted every year.
  2. The most common reason cited for being harassed is a student’s appearance or body size. 2 out of 5 teens feel that they are bullied because of the way that they look.
  3. One-third of teens are harassed because they are or are perceived to be lesbian, gay, or bisexual.
  4. 1 in 4 teachers see nothing wrong with bullying and will only intervene 4% percent of the time.
  5. A victim of bullying is twice as likely to take his or her own life compared to someone who is not a victim.
  6. 64% of American school principals say that student who is a racial minority would feel safe at their school.
  7. Physical bullying peak in middle school and declines in high school. Verbal abuse rates remain constant from elementary to high school.
  8. Researchers feel that schools should not be treated as part of growing up (with the attitude “kids will be kids”).
  9. 41% of principals say they have programs designed to create a safe environment for LGBT students, but only 1/3 of principals say that LGBT students would feel safe at their school.
  10. 57% of students who experience harassment in school never report the incident to the school. 10% of those who do not report stay quiet because they do not believe that teachers or staff can do anything.
  11. Schools with easily understood rules of conduct, smaller class sizes and fair discipline practices report less violence than those without such features.
  12. Sources: NASP, The Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network,