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I am whatever YOU think I am until YOU get to KNOW me. This is true for everyone else too, of course.. so don't make assumptions about anyone or pass judgment; ask questions. You might just make a new friend.

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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

TWO SPIRITS

Why are people harassed, attacked, and killed simply for being who they are? How do these crimes affect society as a whole? And what do we do to end these tragedies? This powerful documentary—together with the project’s interconnected outreach components—place what occurred in Colorado in a universal context, illuminating one of the most complex issues of our day through the story of Fred Martinez. 

The number of anti-LGBT incidents reported to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs has risen in the past two years, which signals a retrograde environment where violent incidents that range from threats, harassment, and vandalism, to physical assault with weapons and vehicles, and escalate even to torture and murder are on the increase.

Fatal assaults against gender non-conforming people continue to rise, and many teens have been murdered in attacks motivated by their gender identity or gender expression--most of color, disadvantaged, and gay, lesbian, or transgender. Chillingly, offenders who were 18 years of age or under represent fully twenty percent of all offenders. There has also been a disturbing increase in gang-style violence, in which a group of perpetrators "hunt" someone they identify as LGBT, targeting them for harassment or violence.

One of the most important ways to change this dynamic within the culture is by telling the stories that humanize the issues and transform fear and bigotry into insight and compassion.

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