This is a letter I submitted to the Denver Interfaith Alliance to show my support of the efforts to combat the expected Presidential order on "Religious Liberty" that is a thinly-veiled attack on LGBTQ rights:
For far too long, the loudest voice from the religious community in regards to LGBTQ men and women has been that of condemnation and denunciation.
This needs to change.
For far too long, men and women who identify as Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, transgender or questioning have been ostracized, targeted and subject to discrimination and violence because of who they love and how they love.
This needs to change as well.
In my congregation, in my community, in my family there are many Gay and Lesbian couples who are in long-term, healthy relationships. I know many men and women who are raising wonderful, well-adjusted children in homes where there are either two mothers or two fathers. That they have recently been able to legally recognize and sanctify their relationships under the covenant of marriage is an important right that cannot be taken away.
As a Rabbi – as a person of faith - I believe that the most important verse in the Bible can be found in Genesis 1:27. There we find it written that God created Humanity in the Divine Image.
- We are the image of God.
- We are all holy creatures.
- God created us.
- God loves us.
I believe that it is essential for religious communities to become involved in the struggle for LGBTQ rights. For if we stand idly by and do nothing when basic human rights are denied:
- The right to legal protection for families
- The right to job security.
- The right to housing;
- The right to live free from fear.
- The right to ensure that we can carry out the wishes of our spouses and partners when they become incapacitated;
- The right to visit our loved ones when they are in the hospital;
- the right to insurance;
- and so many others…..
...then we are denying the holiness implanted not only within our brothers and sisters – but within ourselves as well. Silence is complicity.