On Wednesday, in a stand against the bullying of lesbian and gay children, people all over the world wore purple. It was interesting to see who donned the royal shade. I took note at our inter-faith luncheon, at the grocery store, even as I was driving and observing those walking on the street. Suddenly, I was keenly aware of people all around me. This was a visual code to signify support and safety. I felt instantly close to people I did not know. This simple sign demonstrated a commitment to stand against hatred and violence, and stand in support of gay children — indeed people — everywhere. Had this day fallen on a Sunday, I wondered to myself, how purple would America's pews be?
A survey released Thursday reported that 2 out of 3 Americans believe that gay people commit suicide at least partly because of messages coming out of churches and other places of worship. The survey continued to report that 4 out of 10 Americans say that the messages coming out of churches about gay people are negative, and those very messages contribute to negative perceptions of gay people.