Creating Change 01/27/2012

Yesterday was the first full day of the Creating Change 2012 conference. The previous two days included some workshops, a congressional lobby day, and an opening plenary Thursday night where we heard from Ben Jealous, President and CEO of the NAACP, about his experience as an activist for both the civil rights and lgbt movements.

The first session I attended yesterday morning was called “The Future of Sexual Orientation.” This workshop discussed personal evolutions of identity – gender, gender of sexual partners, monogamy vs non-monogamy, top vs bottom, and so forth. We talked about the challenges that changing labels and dynamics present in arguing publicly for our rights and for specific policies.

The second session I attended was called “Next strategies for LGBT Jewish movement building.” The session mentioned a variety of existing Jewish LGBT initiatives and organizations and had us discuss ways that the Jewish LGBT movement could work together more.

The mid-day plenary yesterday was Task Force Executive Director Rea Carey’s State of the Movement address. Carey spoke of all of the recent policy victories and ongoing campaigns, as well as some of the challenges we are currently facing. Carey spoke about the recent wave of voter suppression measures and how those will impact the LGBT movement. The metaphor for the address was the song “Defying Gravity” from the musical Wicked, which seemed very fitting.

For the third workshop of the day, I chose a screening of a film about asexuality, called (A)sexual. I thought the film was well-done and informative but I didn’t participate in the discussion after the session ended.

For workshop four, I attended “Laboring for LGBT Rights: Exploring and Educating on the Intersections of the Working Class and LGBTQ movement.” This session covered the overlapping history of both movements and some new lgbt-labor initiatives that are taking place.

For the caucus session, I went to the athiest caucus. There seemed to be a general sense that as much as the conference was being accommodating of religious folks, it seemed like the non-religious attendees were mostly not considered in the planning process.

Finally, I ended the day by attending the Shabbat service, which was very nice. It was mostly a typical Reform service, but with an lgbtq vibe.

Overall, it was a great day of workshops and conversations.

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This entry was posted in conferences, GLBT.

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