Rev. Irene Monroe: But in a country with no federal hate crime bill, police enforcement and church to protect LGBTQ Jamaicans, solutions can’t be found.
Rev. Irene Monroe: Intense homophobia in Jamaica is so unchallenged that people simply speculate about peoples’ sexual orientation or gender identity then plot to kill them.
Rev. Irene Monroe: Harlem still remains as both a complicated open and closeted queer social hot spot. Harlem’s transgender community wrestles more than any of us LGBQs with Harlem’s homophobia.
Rev. Irene Monroe: McClurkin, a three-time Grammy winner and revered judge on BET’s “Sunday Best,” a reality TV-gospel singing competition show, doesn’t get it that he’s a polarizing figure.
Rev. Irene Monroe: Civil rights struggles in this country, unfortunately, have primarily been understood and demonstrated as tribal and unconnected rather than intersectional and interdependent.
Rev. Irene Monroe: Pope Francis’ remarks are still sending global shock waves. And they are the most LGBTQ affirmative remarks the world has ever heard.
Rev. Irene Monroe: A young man has become the symbol of the horrific result of such stereotyping, and is fast becoming the symbol for a movement. Just as Matthew Shepard’s death galvanized a nation, Trayvon Martin’s death is doing the same.
Irene Monroe: Many note how far the LGBTQ community has traveled—from a disenfranchised group on the fringe of America’s mainstream to a community now on the verge of full equality. But not all members of our community have crossed the finish line.
Irene Monroe: In our first and never again face-to-face encounter, the boa poked its head up greeting me with a hiss, and I responded with a blood-curdling scream.
Rev. Irene Monroe: With more and more ex-gay ministries not only losing potential clients and political leverage, but also losing monies reparative therapies generate, there is a gradually shift from “curing” one’s LGBTQ sexual orientation to abstinence from it.
Irene Monroe: Mainstream Prides have themes focused on marriage equality for the larger community where Prides organized by and for LGBTQ people of African descent have focused not only on HIV/AIDS but also unemployment, housing, gang violence, and LGBTQ youth homelessness.
Rev. Irene Monroe: Not enough is ever accurately reported about hate crimes against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people of color, and how issues of race, gender identity, and sexual orientation trigger the type of violence against them. Nor are the reasons for the silence around such violence often explored.
Irene Monroe: Joyner points to the ongoing struggle in the African American community with its unresolved homophobia and misogyny that falls on the backs of its women and LGBTQ population, pitting one disenfranchised group against another.