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Mayors for Freedom to Marry

Posted by on 11:30 am in Blog | 0 comments

Mayors for Freedom to Marry

Aloha Mr. Mayor, My name is Chelton Miyazono. I’m writing you to ask if you will please sign the Mayors for Freedom to Marry agreement. A census review completed in 2008 by the Williams Institute of UCLA, estimated that there are 373 same-sex couples/families living in Maui County. By now, I’m sure this number has grown. Please sign this statement to recognize the equality of hundreds of same-sex couples/families and the many LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered) citizens living in Maui County. By signing this statement, you will join the ranks of over 300 Mayors from 35 different States in support of the freedom to marry. Mayor Kenoi of Hawai’i County and Mayor Caldwell of Honolulu have already signed this statement. You and Mayor Carvalho of Kaua’i have yet to join the movement for marriage equality. With your signature of support, you welcome LGBT people around the world, to visit and experience all of the Aloha and beauty that the islands of Maui County have to offer. With your name added to this statement, you will be standing up for the rights of hundreds of citizens who elected you into office. It will mean my partner and I and other residents like us, has a leader that believes in the equal freedoms for all Americans. It will signify the fight for equality isn’t thousands of miles away on the mainland, but exist right here on our home-island. My partner and I invite you and Mrs. Arakwara into our home, so we can share with you that our relationship, like many other same-sex couples living on Maui, is no different from yours. In conclusion, will you please sign this statement in support of the freedom to marry. Very Respectfully, Chelton James Miyazono Visit the Freedom to Marry Web Page for more information on the Mayors for the Freedom to Marry...

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Boy Scouts Set to Vote on Lifting Gay Youth Ban

Posted by on 11:39 am in Blog | 0 comments

Boy Scouts Set to Vote on Lifting Gay Youth Ban

By Molly Hennessy-Fiske at LA Times May 23, 2013, 6:30 a.m. GRAPEVINE, Texas — Thursday’s vote on whether to lift the ban on gay youths in the Boy Scouts of America could symbolize a cultural shift. Texas businessman Barry Price was so disturbed by the prospect that he joined a protest Wednesday, picking up a sign to urge Scout leaders to retain the ban. “The things that shaped this country — the morals, the foundation of who we are — are being shaken and broken apart,” said Price, 68, of Grapevine, an Army veteran and former Boy Scout who said the vote troubled him as much as the U.S. military lifting its ban on gays serving openly two years ago. Although the proposal would end the ban on gay youths, gay Scout leaders would still be barred. Scouting’s 1,400-member national council will vote by secret ballot, with a simple majority required for passage. Officials are expected to announce the results at a briefing here late Thursday. If it passes, the new policy would take effect Jan. 1, a Scouts spokesman said. In that case, Price said, “the Boy Scouts will be devastated. It will decimate their finances and membership.” Supporters agree that passage would signal a shift in philosophy — but they say it’s long overdue. “This work really symbolizes where we are as a country,” said Rich Ferraro, a spokesman for the New York-based gay advocacy group GLAAD, noting that as gays have gained greater acceptance nationwide, banning them from Scouting “is not just anti-gay, it’s anti-American.” Boy Scout leaders acknowledged this week that the vote is about more than just their group. “Somehow, Scouting has become one of the focal points in the debate on homosexuality,” Boy Scouts President Wayne Perry wrote in an opinion piece this week in USA Today. He supports the new policy as “the right decision for Boy Scouts” that “would provide kids a place to belong while they learn and grow.” The Boy Scouts claim 2.6 million members nationwide, but have seen membership drop in recent years. About 70% of troops are sponsored by religious groups, some of which have threatened to pull their charters if the ban is lifted. But others, including the largest sponsor, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, support the proposal. Opponents include leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention, Republican Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas). Cruz released a statement late Wednesday saying, “I respect the Boy Scouts’ right to make their own decisions as a private organization, but I personally hope they will continue their current policy as I believe it’s in the best interest for members, their families, and the Boy Scout tradition.” Supporters of the change include several other U.S. senators, President Obama and his Republican challenger in last year’s election, Mitt Romney. Backers gathered more than 1.8 million petition signatures in favor of gays in Scouting, while opponents gathered nearly 19,000 signatures. Zach Wahls, a 21-year-old Eagle Scout from Iowa who was raised by lesbian mothers, helped gather signatures and lobby Boy Scout leaders through the group he founded, Scouts for Equality. He said gay activists were excited the issue had come to a vote, and did extensive field work to secure about 400 votes this week, enough that...

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Pride 2012 Wrap Up

Posted by on 7:35 am in Blog | 0 comments

Pride 2012 Wrap Up

Aloha! It’s hard to believe how quickly Pride came and went this year. Seems like it was just January and we were putting together Maui Pride as a Non-Profit. Now that our Pride celebration is over, we can start planning for next year. I don’t know if most of you know this, but Maui Pride started as a new Non-Profit in January of 2012, for pulling off everything that happened this past year is an amazing task and couldn’t have been done without so many of you! We did a survey as most of you will recall on Facebook as well as to everyone who purchased tickets online. We greatly appreciate the feedback as it helps us with ideas for next year. I wanted to take a few moments and share what lies ahead for Maui Pride as, it’s important to keep this positive momentum moving forward. First off, let me say how thankful I am that we have an amazing Board of Directors, volunteers and all the sponsors that helped make this Pride a success. We set out with a goal this year to change the way Pride happens and make it a positive event. And as most everyone who completed the survey can agree, we did so (even with the controversial Maui Time paper.) Our goal to mix Hawaiian culture and mainland feel while bring the community together worked quiet well. It gave us a foundation to build on, and continue moving forward. We gave away two scholarships to LGBT youth, who were so grateful to have help for their schooling. We have made the goal of raising $5,000 to go towards scholarships which is double of what we raised this last year and I know with everyone’s help we will get there. This year as we continue to keep growing; you will see a lot of your favorite events again and some new ones as well. One exciting event will happen in December (watch Facebook for details) and the other is a joint venture with the Maui Sunseeker LGBT Resort. In February Maui Pride and the Maui Sunseeker present “Whale”abration which is a gay cruise with whale watching. Tickets and details will be up in November. Our goal is to have an event every month that not only raises money for our festival, but also our scholarships. These events bring our community closer together. A lot of people asked why Pride was in October, the biggest reason was so we wouldn’t be competing with other Prides. It’s also a slower time on the island and a great time to encourage visitors from the mainland to come over. Not to mention Maui is beautiful in October! So, mark your calendars because Pride will happen October 4-6,2013! It will be bigger, flashier, and filled with lots of Pride and Aloha! If you have ideas or suggestions, don’t hesitate to send them our way. Let’s continue to build our LGBT community on Maui! Sincerely, Bob Kincaid,...

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