Madison Friends Meeting signed on to this statement released by Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice, June 28, 2023
In response to the Human Rights Campaign’s recent ‘State of Emergency’ declaration for LGBTQ+ people in the United States, we write as clergy and people of faith to urge an end to political, civic, and religious hate speech against the LGBTQ+ community. And we unequivocally and unconditionally affirm and celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer members of our communities.
As leaders representing various faith traditions, we stand united in our support of each individual’s human dignity and worth. We stand united in our belief that our LGBTQ+ siblings are beloved and sacred. Each person should feel safe and nurtured in our communities.
Therefore, We denounce the use of political hate speech against the LGBTQ+ community. Hate speech dehumanizes our family members, friends, and neighbors, and too often leads to violence against marginalized communities. We have witnessed a rise in dehumanizing language aimed particularly at the LGBTQ+ community at all levels of government—from the U.S. Congress to local school boards. Such language causes great emotional and psychological harm to the Queer community, particularly to our LGBTQ+ youth. Therefore, we call upon all people to counter messages of hate with messages of love.
We call on our legislators and elected officials at all levels of government to block or oppose anti-LGBTQ+ bills, ordinances, and policies. Currently, more than 550 anti-LGBTQ+ bills have been introduced in 41 state legislatures, with more expected, including right here in Wisconsin. School boards across the country have enacted anti-LGBTQ+ policies, impacting our Queer youth and their families. Our transgender and non-binary siblings continue to be disproportionately targeted by such actions. Instead, we challenge our political leaders to put forth policies and proposals that celebrate, affirm, and protect LGBTQ+ people.
To the LGBTQ+ community we say: our communities, our cities, our state, and our nation are stronger and more vibrant because of our diversity. No matter your sexual or gender identity, you belong here. As faith leaders, we cannot and will not remain silent in the face of injustice towards our LGBTQ+ neighbors. An attack on you is an attack on us all. We see you. We love you. And we dedicate ourselves to advocating for policies that enable everyone to thrive.