Keep hatred out of local paper

Keep hatred out of local paper

I most certainly would not allow it in my church.

I am deeply disappointed in the Mirror for printing Mary Locke’s letter in the Dec. 20 issue. I don’t know what the Mirror’s standards are in choosing what to print, but I would have hoped they would throw away letters that are objectively paranoid, bigoted and full of lies.

To call LGBTQ people a “cult” from a “tiny minority” that intends to use a “power grab” to “dragnet other people’s children” into some sort of “lifestyle” of “perverted values” demonstrates utter ignorance and scorn for fellow human beings. Clearly this is a person who has no desire to grow or learn from actual facts, let alone her neighbors.

I don’t know whether GSA clubs customarily avoid yearbook photos, but if so, the reason is clear enough to me: students should be able to find a place where they can exist and share openly without becoming targets for violence.

Our society has made great strides toward making a “safe space” for people not to live in fear for their lives. But usually, the most unsafe place to come out is at home. When I was in high school I valued peer support groups and I trusted the confidence of my guidance counselor. There is nothing inappropriate about young adolescents having a space like this; indeed, many give up hope without it. According to The Trevor Project, LGBTQ youth are five times more likely than other teens to attempt suicide; for those from unsupportive families the rate is 8.4 times higher.

If there’s anything that I, an Episcopal priest, can do to offer hope to our community’s young people and give them space to be who they are, please let me know. But for God’s sake — and I mean that literally — keep this hatred out of our local paper. I most certainly would not allow it in my church.

The Rev. Josh Hosler

The Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd

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