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Archive for the ‘The Pride Center’ Category

This important Town Hall Meeting is open to the general public. If you know someone affected by the use of Meth, please encouage them to attend.  Also visit:

www.NOMOREMETH.org for more information.

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 POZitive Attitudes is a support outreach group of the

WORLD AIDS MUSEUM & EDUCATIONAL CENTER. 

http://www.worldaidsmuseum.org

Franks logo

DONATE, VOLUNTEER, VISIT.

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This important Town Hall Meeting is open to the general public. If you know someone affected by the use of Meth, please encouage them to attend.  Also visit:

www.NOMOREMETH.org for more information.

smaller

 

 POZitive Attitudes is a support outreach group of the

WORLD AIDS MUSEUM & EDUCATIONAL CENTER. 

http://www.worldaidsmuseum.org  

Franks logo

DONATE, VOLUNTEER, VISIT.

Read Full Post »

Group Member, David Woodward’s art is currently being showing by the LatinPride Gallery at the Pride Center, Room 206 thru January 31st.

Join the Group for the artist’s reception in Room 206 on Friday, January 14th from 6 pm – 9 pm.

If you plan to plan to go to the Friday movie, stop by the reception prior to the movie!

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PALS Project and After-Life cordially invite LIFE graduates and their friends and family to

THE 1st Annual Wonderland Party

Saturday December 18, 2010

6:00 – 9:00 PM

Pride Center at Equality Park
Building B (Back Building)

Benefiting “Toys for Kids”. Please bring an unwrapped toy

Come share in this wonderful night surrounded by friends and family with food & beverages provided.

Prize giveaways!

Please RSVP and indicate plus ONE by December 10, 2010 to:
pals.project.ftl@gmail.com

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Life is always changing. This is one certainty we share.

On January 1, Kristofer Fegenbush, MSW will assume the newly formed role of Deputy Director of the Pride Center. Kristofer is in his fifth year with the Center, as PALS Project Manager. The Deputy Director will oversee programs, operations, facilities and various administrative functions for the Center. Kristofer will support Paul Hyman, Executive Director in this role, capitalizing on opportunities for continued revenue development. In addition, Kristofer will continue in a part-time clinical role with the PALS Project to provide one-on-one health counseling to program participants and to provide support and leadership as needed for LIFE and CHOICES workshops.

Assuming the PALS Project Manager role will be Frank Gurucharri. Frank enters his third year with the Center, as PALS Project Behavioral Health Specialist. He has a long history of effectively managing various programs and initiatives and is well-regarded by PALS Project participants, graduates, volunteers, staff and Health Department officials. We look forward to the expanded impact Frank will have on our community.

Jeff Grigsby and Magno Morales will continue with their consistent, quality leadership of the LIFE and CHOICES programs. Our community is richer for their dedication, compassion and service.

We continue to embrace the future with vision, enthusiasm and appreciation of your enduring support!

*****************************************************

Congratulate Kristofer and Frank the next time you see them

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Someone asked me what do all the letters stand for? To paraphrase James Stockdale (Ross Perot’s 1992 VP running mate) who started and ended his political career with this sentence; “Who am I and why am I here?”, Who are we and how did we get here? Is it GLBT or LGBT? What does QIA stand for? And why are some people changing our name to Pride or even Queer?

As usual, politics is heavily involved in these decisions. GLBT stands for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender. The Q usually stands for Questioning, but sometimes Queer and sometimes we have QQ to represent both. The I stands for Intersex where the biological sex of male or female cannot be clearly defined. Historically, this once was referred to as Hermaphrodite as someone that had both male and female genitalia. The A stands for Allies, as in straight people that support us.

So, who comes first, G or L? Maybe this article from DC’s center will explain the politics behind this change.

Once you start segmenting the community into letters, you end up with a dispute over which letter comes first. This has caused some GLBT-LGBTQIA community centers to rebrand themselves under an all-inclusive word such as Queer. This doesn’t really solve the problem either because many people in the community are put off because they feel that word is offensive. It is, but the logic is by embracing that word, we desensitize it.

Here in Ft Lauderdale, we’ve avoided that political battle by becoming The Pride Center. That works as long as people don’t confuse us with The Pride Institute, Pride Factory, Pride Mortgage, or call us to clean their carpets thinking we are Pride Carpet Cleaning.

We could pick a non-offensive word that’s all all-inclusive, such as “Gay”. But proposing that would make my career as an activist as short-lived as James Stockdale’s political career.

What do you think?

-Steve

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In September, 4 Gay teenagers committed suicide. Last week at the Wednesday night group, we discussed that those teenagers didn’t committ suicide because they were Gay, but because they felt other people wouldn’t, couldn’t or didn’t accept them because of that. Many of us shared our own expereinces and fears of coming out and the reactions other people would have. The question was raised, how can we accept our HIV-status if we still can’t fully accept our homosexuality. The psychological aspects of learning to accept being both Gay and HIV Positive may take on an added dimension in people who were infected with HIV sexually.

October didn’t bring any better news. In New York, eight gang members were arrested in the torture of two teenage boys and a man in an anti-gay attack. The victims were burned, beat, tortured for hours and sodomized with baseball bats and the wooden handle of a plunger.

Some of our leaders still just don’t get it. A week AFTER those attacks, in New York, where those attacks took place, the NY Republican candidate for Governor, Carl Paladino was still making anti-Gay remarks; “I just think my children and your children would be much better off and much more successful getting married and raising a family, and I don’t want them brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid and successful option – it isn’t” His written address went even furthur “There is nothing to be proud of in being a dysfunctional homosexual” and being homosexual “is not how God created us.”

Personally, I didn’t choose to be Gay anymore than I chose my race or ancestory.

When politicians hold these beliefs is it any wonder that gang members feel it’s ok to burn, beat torture and sodomize people they feel are threats. They’re just doing physically what Carl Paladino was doing verbally. They’re marginalizing homosexuals. They’re marginalizing us, you and I. I guarantee you that if those gang members were upset with those teenager for being Gay, they would have less sympathy for us being Gay and HIV Positive. And I guarantee you that as Governor, Carl Paladino will have no sympathy.

I suspect that we will continue to hear stories like this next month and the month after that. But there is a difference today. Today is Coming out day and there is going to be a candelight vigil. The Pride Center and Sunshine Cathedral are co-sponsoring this event. Today is your opportunity to stand up in a dignified manner and denounce those gang members and the political thought that we, you and I, are not dysfunctional homosexuals. We don’t accept being marginalized and most importantly we accept and embrace ourselves, just as we are.

If you’re angry, about the suicides, about the beatings and about those political ideas, then join me and The Group at the Sunshine Cathedral on 1480 SW 9th Ave at 7:30 PM tonight.

-Steve

On Monday, Paladino soften, yet reaffirmed his position. Asked about the “brainwashed” remark, he said that comment had “to do with schooling children. My feelings on homosexuality are unequivocal. I have absolutely no problem with it whatsoever. My only reservation is marriage.”

And yet he went on to say that “children should not be exposed to that at a young age. They don’t understand this. It’s a very difficult thing. And exposing them to homosexuality, especially at a Gay Pride parade, and I don’t know if you’ve ever been to one, but they wear these little Speedos and they grind against each other. It’s just a terrible thing.”

So is it just marriage you’re opposed to or the fact that homosexuals have Gay Pride parades that might expose children? Make up your mind.

“Mr. Paladino’s statement displays a stunning homophobia and a glaring disregard for basic equality,” Vlasto said in a statement. “These comments along with other views he has espoused make it clear that he is way out of the mainstream and is unfit to represent New York.”

Caputo disagreed. “The majority of New Yorkers agree with him,” he said of Paladino’s views on homosexuals and gay rights.

Polls have shown 58 percent of New Yorkers favor gay marriage, which Paladino says he opposes. Polls have also shown Cuomo expanding his lead on Paladino after the gap had closed last month to six points.

Paladino’s own personal life has been an issue in the campaign. He has raised charges about Cuomo’s sex life that he now admits are unsubstantiated, while Paladino is married but has a 10-year-old daughter from an affair with a former employee of his. He has also admitted to sending out obscene and racist e-mails.

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