Trans Day of Remembrance

 

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LGBT Community Network: Tulare, California Chapter

Welcome to LGBT Tulare! We're a chapter of the LGBT Community Network, the Clovis-based non-profit organization well-known by its flagship chapter, LGBT Fresno!

We're a vibrant chapter of the LGBT Community Network, and we're the go-to source for news and local happenings in Tulare and California's Central Valley!

Striving to better serve the local LGBTQ+ Community, we take pride in informing the community and increasing visibility among residents of our Central Valley. All our content is informative, well-written and features contributors from around the world.

Blaine M. Leal

Chapter Leader

Clinics and Health Resources

Tulare Community Health Clinic

  • 3035 E Bardsley Ave, Tulare
  • Todos los servicios disponsibles en espanol

theSOURCE LGBT+ CENTER

  • Medical Advising
  • Counseling resource information availabile on website
  • thesourcelgbt.org
  • Located at 208 Main Street, St B, Visalia

Family Services of Tulare County

  • Free counseling services for victims
  • of bullying
  • Assault Hotline: 559-732-7371

Trevor Project

  • Crisis talk: 866-488-7386; or text: 202-304-1200

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

  • Any suicide or self-harm issues: 800-273-TALK

LGBTQ+ Pride In South Africa By Thabiso Praisegod Zulu

Thabiso Praisegod Zulu  | Oct. 22, 2020

           Much like unicorns, Pride in South Africa exists and does not exist at the same time. As a Queer Person living in South Africa, I am yet to discover what is it that I should be proud of, according to society. I have been supposedly ‘free’ since 1996, – I can legally marry.  

In a country that is rich in history for the LGBTQ+ Community, from the Khokhoi people in the 18th Century, yet it’s disheartening there is no positive film adaptation of our history.  I have ‘rights’ also proted, supposedly, as a Queer Person: rights that have been constituted and documented to protect me. My brothers and sisters in the LGBTQIA+ Community, and I, ought to be grateful? But is it really enough to be grateful for – and proud?

As a gay person living a democratic country that has the potential to demonstrate eloquently, the gender equalities that it preaches about – I struggle to find what we should be proud of. Is it the basic human decency bequeathed to me of no longer being stoned? 

South African Public Facilities and Public Institutions

            The issue of gender-neutral facilities is something that seems not to be taking a priority in our country. There are a handful institutions of higher learning that have managed to prioritise the LGBTQ+ Community, allowing our lives to be less strenuous by building or modifying their facilities so that they can carter to all genders. A segregated bathroom to a trans person is a constant torture. Not only do they have to be reminded that they are not biologically aligned with their sexual identities, but are also bombarded with silly questions whenever they need to use these facilities.

The healthcare workers are still homophobic. It is still very difficult for us to open up about our sexual health needs, which is one of our basic human rights that gets infringed. An article I read about regarding the first queer wellness centre that was opened earlier this year in Johannesburg, South Africa, speaks vividly about this and the notion behind opening a wellness centre that will focus on issues of Queer personhood.

It is difficult to bring the topic of preferred pronouns to healthcare workers who still believe that it is right to impose their personal or religious beliefs on us when we are simply seeking medical assistance. Which begs the questions: during the meetings and trainings they attend and conduct, are we even discussed or considered? 

The Batho Pele Principles: do they apply to us? Are we not worthy of receiving service that is ‘Courteous’ and ‘Value for money?’ If we are then should we not form part of the training sessions and workshops that will focus on how to properly address health issues of the LGBTQIA+ Community. 

And then there is an issue about application forms that still insists as limiting us by forcing us to choose between Mr., Ms., Mrs. When will Mx be recognised? The other application form that I came across asked if I am a man, a woman, or LGBT. 

Left me perplexed with questions such as cannot I be gay and still identify as a man? What does that imply? That as gay men we are not in fact men? Still used even by some South African institutions and organizations that claim to understand the importance of gender transformation, yet are aiming to fight the injustices and exclusions of marginalized groups.


Conclusion


          While I commend some brave South African film writers that seek to bring issues of South African minorities in film adaptations, I still believe that they can do better on these characteristics that they bring to life for millions to see. The message must be concisely about bringing awareness while leaving viewers educated about our struggles as a community. 

Lastly, we deserve to receive the same treatment from public servants regardless of where we are because we are all over South Africa, and not just in the cities.





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 LGBTQ and People of Color Outreach In South Africa 

Thabiso Praisegod Zulu  | Oct. 16, 2020

            'Are these the end of days?' This is the question that persists the most on social media platforms.

The Christian Bible does not say when will the world end. It is safe to say no one knows for sure. Moreover, it tells us about the events that will unfold towards the end of times – most of which are already taking place.

With the global pandemic that pervades in our communities, and the alarming statistics of people dying from it – where are Christian leaders to instill faith to the affected and hope for infected? It disappointed many how the leaders were fighting for churches to reopen, instead of using social media platforms and other forms of modern communication to engage with the followers of the Christian religion. While praising together can be an agreeable thing, surely there’s more to faith than the occasional pubic gathering. Gender-based Violence and the LGBTQIA+ Community


Femicide has been going on for quite some time now, yet our Christians leaders are not doing enough to address it. This coincides with how Christians preach to women to obey and respect men, at times contradicting morals about men valuing and respecting women. Are Christian leaders lacking the right scriptures to quote and meditate on to help fight this pandemic of feminicide that is ruining our country?

      “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,”
–  Ephesians 5:25


For centuries, the LGBTQ+ community has been told that there is something wrong with queer people 

            There is not enough that has been done by Christian leaders to eradicate the stigma and hatred inflicted upon queer-identifying individuals. The leaders, however, have been successful in enabling guilt and shame to those who are queer, some attitudes of which encourage hatred by some members of the community. My country’s leaders have been adamant in not accepting my community.

      “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.”
–  John 6:37


We need to acknowledge the vast difference between being tolerated and being accepted. Galatians 3:28 reads: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Does God hate queer people, or are Christian leaders simple quoting particular bible verses to use and promote their own agendas?

      “Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.”
–  Romans 15:7


We cannot ignore the fact that public figures have a substantial influence on young people: minds that are hungry for change, tired of being ridiculed and being shunned. Minds searching for diversity and inclusion. What they say matters to a huge population.

If the Christian leaders do not fight to go back to being the leaders that the young adults look up to, unfortunately other influences (often negative) will certainly gain huge momentum. Look around, our leaders, who preach about bringing change, fighting unemployment and other issues that have affected the youth – yet do not consult with the youth or include in decision-makings. Decisions supposedly being taken for a ‘better South Africa’ for all. How many complaints have been made about our leaders stagnant in their way of doing things at the expense of the change that the youth is yearning for? The South African youth has grown tired of fiddle promises made by Christian leaders to bring change in our societies, while they are failing dismally to soldier on and fight against the injustices in our country.

Do Black Lives Matter only when prejudice is a result of white people? When you oppress and harm the people of colour as a person of colour, should we not call you out?

      “Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.”
–  Ephesians :11

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