Introducing neighbors

June 30, 1994

To the editor:

I am proud of the Daily News Miner for having the courage to introduce us to some neighbors many of us do not know. Especially when the neighbors are different from us and may even frighten some of us !

It is to be expected that fear of the unknown, and of differences, cause some people to direct anger toward any media that brings such neighbors to our attention.

The fear of gay and lesbian neighbors is understandable. It is called "homophobia." It is treatable and curable. Since it is the "unknown" (or "known" by indirect hearsay, such as what may be shouted by a homophobic preacher or teacher) that arouses fear, the cure is getting to know first-hand one or more gay lesbian neighbors.

Many of us have experienced similar cures from racist fears after getting to know a person from a feared racial group. It works the same way when a heterosexual person gets to know, as a friend, a gay or lesbian person. I have had such experience myself.

I am a Christian heterosexual man, father and grandfather. I do not pretend to know everything about homosexuality. So I appreciate the News-Miner for being courageous enough to further my understanding of some of our gay and lesbian neighbors.

Sincerely Richard K. Heacock Jr. Fairbanks

[Methodist (or former) clergyman)


June 30, 1994

To the editor: Nearly 50 years ago under the guise of improving "family values" and social betterment thousands of people - Jews, Gypsies, the mentally ill and disabled, and yes, homosexuals, were judged by a society, put in gas chambers and exterminated by Christians who called themselves Nazis.

It is the same bigotry and prejudice that I read lately in our local newspaper as a backlash concerning Sunday's articles on homosexuality in our community.

This is not a time to judge others as much as it is a time for openness and compassion. If you saw the two women on the cover you would have been struck by how much in love they were, and the courage they had to openly show their love when the community "is not ready to see it" was to be commended. We would hope that at some point in our children's lives they, too, would feel that much love for another individual, regardless of gender.

Fateh Singh and Sat Dharam Khalsa Fairbanks

To the Editor:

2 July 1994

In their 2 July letter, Fateh Singh and Sat Dharam Khalsa state:

F. Singh and S. Khalsa have it backward.

The fact is:

Thousands of people - Jews, Gypsies, the mentally ill and disabled, and yes, homosexuals, were judged by a society, put in gas chambers and exterminated by Nazis who called themselves Christians.

If ones usage definition of Christian is anyone who is a member of organized “christian” religion, then one is as deceived as one who thinks he is a Christian due to his membership in organized “christian” religion.

Christian either means Christ-led, or the word is meaningless.

Christian implies Christ-led.

Hierarchy-led and clergy-led does not equate to Christ-led.

This is not complicated.

With best wishes, John Prewett