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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Live Encounters

Pat & I went to see some live music tonight at the Rhythm Room . It was really fun even though the music was rockabilly, which neither one of us, and especially Pat, would never listen to on the radio. I don't know exactly why that is, but tonight I wondered if it was because you could sense the joy of the artist or the others in the room.

Last weekend I attended a retreat of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)'s GLAD Alliance leadership council. During the retreat we watched a lecture that evaluated different techniques of addressing prejudice. Sadly for me, research shows that the worst way to move someone from a bigoted position is education. I say sadly because education, or debating, or mocking, is my favorite response to prejudice.

Turns out that what works is contact. While serving on the GLAD council and while working at Chalice Christian Church, and on several occasions in my professional life, I've had many opportunities to work with members of the LGBT community. As a result, it is hard for me to even understand how there are people who can claim that the love these people I know so well is sinful. It seems ludicrous to hold such a belief.

I wonder if there is something similar between the thrill of live music and the intensity of working together with someone that changes your experience to such a degree that your emotion must follow.

The nice thing is that this study suggests there is more knowing contact with gay people than ever before in this country. Maybe this will be a non-issue sooner than we think.