*Action Alert: National Center for Lesbian Rights opens dialogue about whether they should represent LESBIANS

The National Center for Lesbian Rights started a “dialogue” today on the issues being raised by Lesbians about the NCLR (see my previous post here).
Here is what Kate Kendell posted:

In Support of Dialogue

by The National Center for Lesbian Rights on Friday, January 7, 2011 at 3:21pm
Some members of the lesbian community have recently said that in their opinion NCLR should not work for the whole community, but only for lesbians. That is a conversation we are always willing to have. We believe the best way to ensure freedom and justice for lesbians is to recognize that the issues facing our community—and indeed, all those oppressed and living with injustice—are inextricably intertwined. We represent lesbians in every aspect of our work—in our family law work, in our asylum cases, in our youth and elder projects, in our sports project, in our employment discrimination work, in our legislative work, and in our federal administrative advocacy. And our organizational values are deeply grounded in the lesbian-feminist and civil rights movements, as well as a commitment to economic justice.
We believe that the fates and futures of lesbians are intertwined with our entire lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, and we must work together until the arc of justice includes full equality for all. Until then, we’ll remain committed to fighting for the safety, security, and liberation for all LGBT people.
In solidarity,
Kate Kendell, Esq.
Executive Director, National Center for Lesbian Rights
And HERE is the link to that conversation. If you have a Facebook account please post your concerns to that conversation. Thank You!

10 thoughts on “*Action Alert: National Center for Lesbian Rights opens dialogue about whether they should represent LESBIANS

  1. I know, it’s all for shit isn’t it. At best I hope to get them to change their name. If they don’t I’m going to make sure every lesbian in the country knows they are not a lesbian advocacy group.

    1. That would be the most logical thing to do. Do African American rights groups support Native American causes? Why doesn’t a “human fund” exist, and why would it fail? No one can cater to everything.

  2. Probably the best we can hope for is some good ‘ol consciousness raising. I had been so frustrated with NCLR that I leapt at the chance to put my two cents in without even reading Kate’s letter (I knew it would be tripe). But upon reading it, I had to look out the window a number of times so I wouldn’t throw up. Reading that was like getting pitched down a twisting, winding, black hole of disorientation. Does she have a way with manipulation or what? Wow. That so many people have bought into this stuff blows my mind. I guess it’s as the always say, follow the money. People like her and her cronies have absolutely no shame and they must work long and hard to come up with that sickening way of twisting words and concepts so they can get their way. If just a few lesbians have their eyes opened by this, I guess we can be happy. The revolution has to start somewhere!

    1. If you look at the sick-ass things they are doing: Suing gay men’s softball for “discriminating” against heterosexuals, Suing the government for the rights of men like Richard Speck to get taxpayer funded sex changes if they decide during incarceration that they are “really a woman”, threatening litigation of women’s sports leagues that “exclude men”, you can really see how evil Kate Kendell and the NCLR really is. Not only do they do these things but they create the impression in the public at large that they represent the priorities of LESBIANS in doing so. And they use lesbians in name only to fund policy that is at odds with lesbian and FEMALE concerns. Kate is the enemy, make no mistake.

  3. The vast majority of NCLR advocacy and resources are dedicated to men. The name is misrepresentative and exploitative. Let’s write to founder Donna Hitchens and see if she’d care to make a public comment on the matter. Let’s message journalists and see if they might be interested in reporting the issue. Let’s message every news venue and blog and public forum where the National Center for “Lesbian” Rights is mentioned. Let’s write to the corporate donors as listed in the NCLR annual report and express our outrage. Let’s tell every Lesbian, and lesbian ally that the NCLR is misrepresenting itself and exploiting lesbians to advocate for men.

  4. It’s a planned, successfully executed attack on Lesbians and theft of Lesbian resources by males and their allies.
    There’s no misapprehension or confusion involved.
    There’s no bargaining with thieves or murderers.
    Over the past 25 years we have witnessed the intentional theft and murder of Lesbian identity.

  5. DAMN, I feel so strongly about this. While Shannon Minter, an FTM argued well the marriage equality cases for NCLR(and we were in the courtroom when he did it)along handsome Butch Dyke Theresa Stuart, assistant DA of San Francisco, for those of us who married in 2004, I was proud of both of them for standing up to the Rightwing, this was fantastic for the many of us Lesbians(who married in far larger numbers than gay men), who did get married, both in 2004 in Gavin Newsom’s marrying revolution, and then again in 2008, when those were thrown out, but the cases made it again to the State Supreme Court….WE WERE THERE. For that, NCLR did a great job.
    HOWEVER, when it came to work issues, both for myself as a Butch Dyke Tradeswoman, and for my partner in her field, also a Butch Dyke, NCLR could not even be bothered with us, or to even get back to us, or share resources with us where we could go to get some help regarding the discrimination and lesbophobia we experienced as OUT Butch Lesbians. Now, if we considered ourselves Transgender, which we do NOT, NCLR has a big Transgender Law Center directly underneath them that they sponsor, or if we were one of the women’s college sport teams high profile cases, or were having a child taken away. But being ordinary OUT and OBVIOUS Butch Lesbians with continual on the job discrimination in our fields, and sometimes blatant sometimes subtle lesbophobia, NCLR could NOT be bothered with us, even though we showed up to the courtroom for the high profile marriage equality cases, in solidarity, and support.
    So they taketh, and only give if it’s high profile enough for them. The same is true with the other gay lawyer groups too, like Lambda Legal. And yet Lesbian tradeswomen and many, many Butch Dykes are discriminated against everyday….but if you say you’re transgender these days, you’ll get extra special attention…..one Butch Dyke DID get represented this way because she claimed she was ‘transgender’ and got the support of these groups in her case against Harley Davidson in San Francisco, they would not promote her because she was a Dyke and female, and actively harassed her. Because of the agencies’ support, she won her case.
    How often does this happen to other Lesbian tradeswomen? All the time! But being a Lesbian is not important enough anymore, unless you say too, you’re ‘transgender’.
    I do agree with Mary Sunshine…especially over the last 15 years(and I’ve been out for 30), I have seen the intentional theft and murder of Lesbian identity, and other than the high profile marriage equality cases, which NCLR has supported, and I’m most thankful because of their wins I am still married to my Lesbian spouse here in California, one of the 18,000, other than that, NCLR hasn’t been there for me as an in the streets longterm financially struggling Dyke. They far more represent the middle class, than working class Lesbians and Butch Lesbians.
    This is the same with NOLOSE, National Organization for Lesbians of Size Empowerment, who have opened up their conference and organization to transmales and ‘queers’, and taken it away from being a Lesbian and woman focussed organization.
    So the answer to Kate Kendall has to be: “Which Lesbians are you representing?” ‘Certainly not me, in the workforce!’. Only the most high profile ones!

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