Saturday Reading List – 4 June 2016

This week the reading list is on Saturday instead of Sunday, and that’s for a good reason – today, Pink Dot will be having its gathering at Hong Lim Park as always. It’ll be at 3pm, so if you’d like, do don pink and go and join them in celebrating and pushing for equality.

It is always easy to say that someone isn’t ‘like us’, and to deny them fair and proper treatment. People did this (and still do) based on skin colour, on language, religion, gender, sexual orientation – just to name a few. A lot harder – and therefore a lot nobler – to be ready to acknowledge that people are people. No better – no worse – equally human.

For today’s reading list – a few articles about the struggle to be recognised as human and equal.

1. The Perfect Wife

The love story of Edith Windsor and Thea Spyer – four decades of better or worse, sickness or health. And how Windsor then became the face of a battle to have her marriage, and her rights, recognised.

But she doesn’t like it when people talk about that period as if she were some kind of lesbian Florence Nightingale. “I was never her nurse—I’m her lover!” Windsor said emphatically. “I was just doing things to make her comfortable—and that was with loving her and digging her. I don’t know if I glorify it.”


2. To Love and to Cherish

A year after US v. Windsor, another lesbian couple in deeply conservative Texas raise a family – and sue for the rights and privileges of parents working to raise a family.

By marrying, and then returning to a state that did not recognize their marriage, the two women were bound to each other in a way that straight couples are not. That fact was not far from their minds when they flew back to San Antonio wearing their wedding rings—two identical platinum bands, each bearing the same inscription, in Hebrew, from the Book of Ruth (“Whither thou goest, I will go”).


3. The Story of Obergefell vs. Hodges

All Jim Obergefell wanted was recognition – his name on the death certificate of the man he married and cared for for years. The resulting lawsuit would lead to marriage equality becoming a fact throughout the United States.

“We need to protect their interest for posterity, for the end of time,” Gerhardstein said. “For many people, marriage is some kind of theoretical thing. There are so many ways that this case is about marriage, about that enduring commitment.”


4. The Implosion of the ex-gay movement

For decades, it was believed that homosexuality was a mental illness – which logically means you could find a way to cure it. But in 2013, the leader of Exodus International, a major ‘pray the gay away’ organisation, shut it down.

“There are people who say I’ve ruined their life,” he says. “There are certainly things I’ve said that caused people shame. Do I think I’ve caused people to kill themselves?” He takes a deep breath and pauses for another moment.


Thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoy these articles as much as I did. And once again – if you can and want to, do drop by Hong Lim Park with Pink Dot. Love and humanity – that is the only way.

If you have any articles to suggest, feel free to drop me a line here or at

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