Archive for March 2013

Five Common Misconceptions About Gay People

After my very popular blog two weeks ago titled “Five Things to Never Say to Gay People” (Link), I am following it up with these five common misconceptions about gay people. I thank some of my readers who gave me some of these ideas.

1. It’s a “white person’s thing.” The one cool thing about the LGBT community is that is intersects with every race, culture, country. Didn’t we all gasp when the president of Iran told an Ivy League audience “we don’t have gay people in Iran.” (Link to article) Perhaps there is some “inherent racial prejudice” with the LGBT community and we in leadership need to be very proactive and vigilant to assure our whole community are represented and are at the table.

2. Gay people don’t have kids. The demographics are continually shifting and more and more same gender couple are having children via natural childbirth methods as well as adoption. Also many gay people have

The number of same-gender female and male couples raising children is increasing rapidly

The number of same-gender female and male couples raising children is increasing rapidly

children in earlier marriages before coming out as gay. FACT: the percentage of same-gender household raising children increased from 17% in the 2000 US Census to 25% in 2010! (Link to ABC news article)

3. All gay people think about is sex – sex – sex. Maybe it just seems that way because many LGBT people may not have as many hang ups as other people about sexuality. Seriously, gay people also think about work, finances, hobbies, their communities and family… which brings us to:

4. If I am straight, my gay friends all want to make a pass at me. Most LGBT people are sensible enough to realize that their straight friends are not going to be interested sexually in them, plus why would we want to ruin a good friendship? Finally, don’t flatter yourself and assume you are your gay’s friends type anyway. Many gay people are very picky. (Smile)

5. All gay men are feminine (and drag queens) and all lesbians are masculine. Not true. Even though LGBT people are often fine with exhibiting both their masculine and feminine sides, there is a wide range of gender expression across the LGBT community. NOTE: it is very dangerous to jump to conclusions about someone’s sexual orientation based on their feminine or masculine qualities. Also this stereotyping is particular dangerous to our young people – we do not need gay male teens thinking the only careers for them are hair stylists and interior decorators, and all lesbian teens thinking they need to be truck drivers or mechanics. Pplease, no offense meant to hair stylists, interior designers and truck drives – LGBT people make great ones!)

Announcement: Engaging with an Organization Developing A New Generation of Diverse Leaders

One of my passions and core areas of my consulting practice is diversity strategy and execution within organizations. I firmly believe that any organization as well as any city, state, province or country can be stronger and healthier if it truly leverages its complete diversity and brings out the best in every single participant.

In that vain, I am pleased to announce that I have accepted the invitation to be a trustee of a recently formed new nonprofit called “Collegiate Bridges”. The goal of Collegiate Bridges is to execute a crucial component of the Generational Plan of America of the Diversity Place by creating a paradigm shift in the way students from underrepresented populations are recruited by colleges in the US.

Students, such as Nkiruka Emeagwali, a medical student at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee who was featured in an America - The Diversity Place online story, can be trained to provide health care to under-served populations

Students, such as Nkiruka Emeagwali, a medical student at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee who was featured in an America – The Diversity Place online story, can be trained to provide health care to under-served populations


The Collegiate Bridges will examine ways to increase high school graduation rates among constituencies that are traditionally lower than the national average. If more students can be given the tools and assistance to graduate and later become innovative problem solvers, we can build a stronger nation and economy.

Some of the strategies of Collegiate Bridges will include innovative use of technology to build a unique “Super Internet Portal” and bridging with individuals, families, communities, faith-based organizations and more.

There are many reasons that inhibit our youth from achieving their full potential. I have blogged about one of these reasons, which is bullying. (link to my most recent blog on bullying which includes links to an earlier blog and several resources.)

The founder of Collegiate Bridges is Albert C. Jones, whose other current endeavors include www.americadiversityplace.com which documented “Stories of America” and “Multicultural Voices Across the Nation” in each of the 48 states in the continental US.

Other confirmed trustees in addition to founder Albert C. Jones and myself include:
• John E. Pierce, Associate VP for Affirmative Action and Diversity Outreach, Creighton University
• Dr. Marcia R. Robinson, Cultural Coordinator, West Las Vegas Art Center
• Dr. Elena Izquierdo, Associate Professor of Teacher Education, University of Texas El Paso
• Dr. Kimberly Fountain, Internal Medicine Physician from Memphis, Tn.

I look forward to working with Albert and this team of trustees to help raise a fully inclusive diverse set of future leaders.

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