April 21, 1996 Issue No. 22
P L A G A L
M E M O R A N D U M
Post Office Box 33292
Washington, DC 20033
A Newsletter for Members and Friends of the
Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians
PLAGAL ANNUAL MEETING SET FOR SUNDAY, MAY 19, 1996, IN WASHINGTON, DC
The 1996 Annual Meeting of the Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians will convene at 1:00 P.M., on Sunday, May 19, 1996, at 1747 "S" Street, Northwest, Washington, DC 20009. The Meeting will elect Members of the Board of Directors of the corporation, consider the proposed change of the name of the corporation, receive reports of the officers, and conduct such other and further business as may properly be introduced at the meeting. Members of PLAGAL who shall have paid their 1996 Membership Dues on or before May 10, 1996, are eligible to vote and hold office.
As part of the debate on the issue of changing the name of the corporation, all letters and e-mail messages received by the time of the meeting will be read and considered. Equal time will then be allocated to speakers supporting and opposing the proposed name change.
On Saturday, May 18, 1996, PLAGAL will participate in sidewalk counseling at the Planned Parenthood Clinic on Sixteenth Street -- just in sight of the White House. Members are encouraged to bring creatively worded and decorated signs and banners. Saturday afternoon will be unscheduled to allow PLAGALites to enjoy what hopefully will be a long awaited Spring day.
Those members who arrive in town Saturday are invited for a dutch treat Pizza and Beer Party at 1747 "S" Street, Northwest. Those requiring sleeping accommodations are advised to contact the National Office as soon as possible -- and residents of the DC area are implored to call the National office to volunteer any sleeping space that could be made available for these guests.
PLAGAL's local groups will participate in the various Pride events at their respective cities. PLAGAL Members and friends are urged to contact your local coordinator to learn what help in needed in each place.
Boston, MA Boston Pride will be on Saturday, June 22, 1996. Call Philip Arcidi for more information.
Cleveland, OH Cleveland Pride will take place on June 15, 1996, and PLAGAL will participate. Pride Call Cecilia Hoselovsky to volunteer.
Philadelphia, PA The Philadelphia Area PLAGAL group will have a booth at Philadelphia Pride on Sunday, June 9, 1996, at Penn's Landing, on the Delaware River in Philadelphia. The table will be open from 1:30 to 6:30 P.M., and volunteers are needed. Chandler Burr, noted author of a report on the genetic basis of homosexuality (and many other traits) will sign copies of his book. Pride will be followed by a terrific hot party at a nearby beach club on Delaware Avenue. Call Chuck to volunteer.
Washington, DC Washington Area PLAGAL will participate in the DC Freedom Festival on Sunday, June 9, held at Freedom Plaza, on Pennsylvania Avenue between 13th and 14th Streets. The booth will operate between 11:30 and 4:30 P.M., and volunteers are needed. Call the National Office.
On April 12, 1996, Philip Arcidi, President of the Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians, took issue with the National Organization for Women and its March to Fight to Right scheduled for Sunday, April 14, 1996, in San Francisco, California.
Speaking for PLAGAL, Mr. Arcidi said, "I am not only disappointed but deeply offended that the National Organization for Women has sought both to link opposition to abortion to the right wing of American politics, but also to confuse the legitimate desires of lesbians and gays for equality under the law with the senseless killing of 4400 unborn children each day. This rigid and unthinking mindset has resulted in many lesbians and gays being hoodwinked into applauding President Clinton's veto of the ban on partial birth abortions, a procedure that gives barbarism its most precise meaning."
ON THE RAINBOW FLAG
Equality for gays and lesbians -- this is the vision we hold in common. All of us dream of a nation as diverse as the colors of our rainbow flag, where every person can live free from harm, free from hate, and free from violence.
The Human Rights Campaign, which claims to fly the rainbow flag for all of us, has defiled it with bloodstains: it has decreed that infanticide must be part of our vision of liberation. It advocates violence against the most defenseless, it insists that promoting abortion is inseparable from promoting gay rights.
Anyone who wants the support of the Human Rights Campaign is obligated to advocate abortion on demand. This edict, part of the Campaign's platform, is an affront to every lesbian and gay man who believes that no one can control the way we think about abortion.
Many of us are troubled by abortion. We find the Campaign's litmus test a hideous mandate; it renders us accomplices to an act which we find too traumatic to describe.
The Human Rights Campaign considers the death toll of abortion -- 4400 each day -- a benchmark of our civil rights. The Campaign would have us trample a weaker minority in pursuit of our rights. It compels us to have others spill their blood for our well being.
Even those who are not troubled by this death toll recognize that it is foolish for the Human Rights Campaign to advocate abortion: it dissipates our time and squanders our donations. We must realign the Human Rights Campaign with its original and laudable mission.
Money has been given to the Campaign for the liberation of gays and lesbians, not for anything else.
We ask the Human Rights Campaign to stop promoting abortion. Your strength -- and the strength of gays and lesbians everywhere -- will grow from the ideals that unite us all.
NATIONAL RIGHT TO LIFE CONVENTION
The National Right to Life Convention will gather on the weekend of June 20 through 22, 1996 at the Radisson Hotel in Alexandria, Virginia. Registration is $95.00 before May 15, and $115 after that date.
PLAGAL LOCAL CONTACTS
BIRMINGHAM: Martha Goodson
1308 Plum Tree Trail No. "B"
Birmingham, AL 35226
BOSTON: Philip Arcidi
747 Main Street
Concord, MA 01742
(508) 369-5095 FAX
CLEVELAND: Cecilia Holesovsky
Post Office Box 609001
Cleveland, OH 44109
1375 Pearl Street; No. 4
Denver, CO 80203
IOWA: Juan M. Jorge Ramirez
MINN/ST.P: John R. Stanek
5053 Washburn Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55412-2225
OMAHA: Elizabeth Bejan
2328 South 32nd Avenue
Omaha, NE 68104
PHILA: Charles F. Volz, Jr.
10935 Ellicott Road
Philadelphia, PA 19154
ROCHESTER: Donna M. Kearney
Post Office Box 10035
Rochester, NY 14610
SAN JOSE: Steve Cook
Post Office Box 4848
San Jose CA 95150
WASH. DC: National Office
P. O. Box 33292
Washington, DC 20033
CLIPPINGS AND CONTACTS
As has become our custom, we would like to remind our readers that PLAGAL needs the names (and addresses, voice and fax numbers, and now e-mail addresses) of local gay and lesbian media. When anything appears in the lesbian and gay media discussing the Pro-Life movement, or in any media discussing PLAGAL, Please, PLEASE send it to us. We do not have -- and cannot afford -- a clipping service or subscriptions to the multitude of lesbian and gay media. We are always discovering -- some months after the event -- that we were mentioned somewhere.
The March 1996 issue of OUT Magazine published seven letters to the editor commenting on Michelangelo Signorile's piece entitled Out of the Pro-Life Closet from November 1995, of which only one was hostile to PLAGAL, and -- interestingly -- only one was from an individual known to PLAGAL. Many thanks to our heretofore unknown allies.
And in Minneapolis, FocusPoint's February 28, 1996, issue prints the most recent in the continuing debate between Brent Christen (Not a PLAGAL member -- but I hope we are working on it) and Angukasuar, a self-identified native American. Mr. Christen points out the support of Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood's founder and patroness, for the eugenic elimination blacks, Slavs, Jews, and Italians. (I guess queers did not make it even that far.)
Karen Murray, a pro-choice columnist for the Fairfax Journal, out in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, DC, alluded on March 6, 1996, to PLAGALites by denigrating those "gay abortion opponents .. [who] profess empathy with the fetus as a 'rejected being.'"
The Spring 1996 Issue of the Ohio Feminist, the newsletter of the FFL of Ohio, re-printed PLAGAL's flyer, "Save the Whales" as a column by Philip Arcidi.
Father Richard John Neuhaus, editor-in-chief of First Things, a monthly published by the Institute of Religion and Public Life, writes in his monthly review column, "The Public Square":
Once again PLAGAL (Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians) was at the big Washington march in January. Once again their support was warmly welcomed by most pro-lifers. Once again they were attacked by other homosexual groups for breaking ranks with the party line on abortion. And once again a few pro-lifers tried to prevent their joining the march. Philip Arcidi, president of PLAGAL, asked a number of people to sign a statement, and I gladly complied. The statement reads: "Pro-Lifers work together for one common goal: to save mothers and their children from abortion. The Pro-Life movement, which encompasses a broad spectrum of our nation, does not impose on its members a consensus on other issues. Therefore, we work with peaceful groups that evidence singular dedication to this common goal. We join together for a cause that is stronger than our differences, and we will continue to work together until the rights of America's unborn are restored."
PHILLY FIGHTS ON!
PLAGAL Vice President Chuck Volz recently took the newly formed gay and lesbian "Lincoln Republicans" to task for excluding pro-lifers from their group while opining that the Republican Party has to have a bigger tent. The founder and president of the Lincoln Republicans is Evelyn Kotch, who, as a former president of Philadelphia's Log Cabin Club, drove both Chuck and Mike Ferens (Chairman of PLAGAL PAC) off her board of directors. Chuck and Mike had been the only non-closeted pro-lifers on the Philadelphia Log Cabin's board of directors.) After Ms. Kotch was deposed as president, she formed this new national group with herself as president, which apparently welcomes everyone except those opposed to the death of the unborn.
Chuck used the formation of the Lincoln Republicans to point out Ms. Kotch's hypocrisy in a letter in , Au Courant, one of Philadelphia's lesbian and gay newspapers on February 27, 1996. In this letter, Chuck noted, "Men and women of good conscience in the gay community who oppose abortion are regularly excluded from organizations who somehow equate lesbian/gay/bisexual/ transgendered rights with the right to terminate fetal life. [The local AIDS Walk organization, From All Walks of Life,] FAWOL diverts funds from the AIDS Walk to two area abortion clinics, and therefore preventing pro-lifers from participating, lest they violate their conscience; ... "
RIGHT TO LIFE OUTLETS
ON THE INTERNET
LISTSERVS (E-mail mailing lists)
1. The Pro-Life Infonet (infonet-list)
Infonet is a mailing list that distributes news releases, educational materials and other timely and important information about the right to life. Each day you may receive approximately a half-dozen messages from right to life leaders and organizations.
To subscribe, send the message "subscribe" to: email@example.com
To subscribe to the reflected list, send an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org with the message:
subscribe infonet reflected (your e-mail address)
For more information, send an empty e-mail to: email@example.com
2. PLD - Pro-Life Discussion List
Mostly unmoderated discussion list for pro-life issues. This is not a place for both sides to debate abortion, but for pro-life folks to discuss issues relevant to the right to life community.
To subscribe, send an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org with the message: subscribe PLD (your e-mail address)
Sorry, PLD is a list that re-sends each message received to the entire list. No digest is available.
IMPORTANT PRO-LIFE WEB PAGES
1. The Ultimate Pro-Life Resource List: http://www.prolife.org/ultimate
Ultimate is the most comprehensive listing of right to life information on the internet. At Ultimate you can find educational fact sheets about dozens of important issues from pro-life feminism to fetal tissue research to RU 486. Ultimate also provides opinion writing, political information, timely pro-life and political news, links to right to life organizations, adoption resources, and much more.
2. National Right to Life: http://www.nrlc.org/nrlc
National Right to Life is the nation's largest national pro-life organization, with state and local affiliates in all 50 states.
For more information on what's happening for the right to life on the internet, send an e-mail to Steve Ertelt (email@example.com).
I hope you'll choose to get involved.
PLAGAL's hard work in Cleveland on behalf of Birthright and Providence House (a crisis nursery) were recognized by much appreciated letters of thanks from the beneficiaries.
PLAGAL Cleveland's Cecilia Holesovsky was scheduled to speak at the National Life Summit and Crosses Project, April 15 through 21, 1996, at the University of Buffalo. However, the University decided to charge the sponsoring pro-life group several thousand dollars more than any other previous user of the facilities, and effectively cancelled the conference.
Cecilia was to have spoken on Saturday, April 20, 1996, on "Eugenics and the Aborted Homosexual." Other speakers included Rachel MacNair, founder of Feminists for Life, Doris Gordon, President of Libertarians for Life, Frederica Matthewes-Green, Author of Real Coices for Women, Frank Pavone, Executive Director, Priests for Life, and, of course, Nellie Gray, organizer of the annual March for Life.
On April 27, 1996, Members of Cleveland PLAGAL will participate in Common Ground, which seeks to alleviate the fears of both pro-lifers and pro-choicers by reasoned and compassionate discussion seeking to find a common ground within which each can operate and understand the other.
STEVE COOK ADVANCES
PRO-LIFE CAUSE IN SAN JOSE
PLAGAL's Bay Area Vice-President Steve Cook , took advantage of the free speech policy of two local radio stations (KBAY 100.3 FM and KKSJ 1370 AM) to present PLAGAL's non-stereotypical message in support of the unborn. The following message will be broadcast on April 23 and 24, 1996.
Steve said, in part, "We as gay, lesbian, and bisexual people, know what discrimination is. So we are able to see abortion for what it is: discrimination against an innocent child, simply because of the place of residency. A mother's womb is not a legally safe place to be, all nine months of pregnancy. It is a medical fact that within 24 days after conception, abortion stops a beating human heart. This discrimination against the child in the womb affects all of us in society. All human rights, civil rights, women's rights, gay rights and the rights of AIDS patients DEPEND on the right to LIVE. Human rights start when human life begins. Your voice is needed to protect children in danger of abortion who cannot speak for themselves. This is urgent, for ALL of us."
On Saturday, April 13, 1996, Steve Cook attended the Annual Spring Fundraising Dinner of the California Pro-Life Council in his capacity as Bay Area PLAGAL Vice-President. Steve and his date were both cordially received. The speaker in part discussed the need to work with PLAGAL to the general applause of the audience.
NEW BOOK RECOUNTS EVIDENCE OF GAY GENETICS
Chandler Burr, a Washington-based science journalist, has written "A Separate Creation: The Search for the Biological Origins of Sexual Orientation" (Hyperion Books: $24.95), a book that may dramatically reverse lesbian and gay support for abortion rights. "Creation" presents not only the scientific evidence for the genetic basis for homosexual orientation in males and females, it details lab methodology, new genetics techniques, and the work of two biotech companies that could soon be used to alter it or eliminate it in the womb.
Burr writes explicitly in the book about this possible use to which this biological research may be put-- the book's tenth chapter is titled "How Genetic Surgery Can Change Homosexuality to Heterosexuality"-- and he acknowledges that his journalistic popularization of the scientific knowledge may hasten this use, but he claims his personal opinions on abortion have not been changed so far. "I have discussed in an as objective a fashion as possible both the scientific evidence and its implications. As for the criticism that I'm popularizing knowledge that can be used against gay people, I plead guilty; I've sought to put this information in language and form that most non-scientists will find easy to understand, and I do not believe ignorance is ever a defense against anything. This work will go forward, and is going forward. Every person will draw his or her own policy implications from these facts. Looking at the sum total of the research that has been done, it is virtually 100% certain there will be an in utero genetic test for homosexuality, possibly within a decade, through amniocentesis or cvs or some similar means. This inevitably means abortion on the basis of the child's sexual orientation. Frankly, that has not changed my views on abortion-- I would personally not support abortion because a child is homosexual, but I believe that this is not my decision to make. That's where I come down on abortion. This knowledge cuts both ways: Larry Kramer has joked that the Christian Right is going to become violently pro-choice, but Pat Robertson has responded by noting that the gay community may soon turn radically pro-life. The only thing certain is that this research is changing the abortion equation, and I think that in this case, Robertson is probably closer to the real outcome than Kramer."
Burr will be sponsored at several events by PLAGAL. As noted elsewhere in this Memorandum, he will sign books -- and sell them -- at Philadelphia Pride. He will also speak on two radio shows targeted to the Philadelphia lesbian and gay community.
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