Community Voices

Community Voices

Commentary and opinion

Former President Barack Obama once said, “In the face of hate and violence, we will love one another. We will not give in to fear or turn against each other. Instead, we will stand united as Americans to protect our people and defend our nation.” On June 12th, 2016, the LGBTQ community was tragically attacked resulting in the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. A year later, we pause to remember the 49 victims of the Orlando Pulse nightclub attack, as well as the 68 individuals who were injured. This June Pride month, we not only stand to honor who we are as a LGBTQ community, but pause to remember those injured and killed celebrating who they were as individuals.

Five suggestions to help us get started

The Election of Donald Trump as president is a dangerous act of political cowardice that could be catastrophic in its effect on this country and the world. By the time that you read this, he will be president – a bloviating narcissist in the White House! Our first impulse immediately after the election was to pack it up; we were done! If Trump is what the country wanted then so be it. However, he lost the popular vote by nearly three million – that’s the population of Chicago and nearly five Baltimores; certainly no mandate for the extremist agenda that his cabinet nominations and other picks show that he intends to inflict on the country. (See sidebar.) No, we can’t walk away; we must rise to the challenge. We must take our despair as fuel for action.

To the editor:

The five of us who write this letter have worked at Chase Brexton for a combined 57 years, and none of us for less than eight years. We come from different backgrounds and have different reasons for coming to and staying with Chase Brexton Health Care. Most of us are part of the LGBT community. We know too well what it is to be one of the underserved, uninsured, and, at times, overlooked. We each hold different positions throughout the organization.

Accountability. We demand it from our presidential candidates, police chiefs, Wall Street executives. What about those who lead our taxpayer-funded nonprofit organizations?     Chase Brexton Health Care is a nonprofit Federally Qualified Health Center with deep roots in the LGBTQ community and a mandate to provide affordable, appropriate health care to Baltimore’s low-income people. It is funded by taxpayer dollars through the Bureau of Primary Care, Medicare, Medicaid, the ACA Exchange, and by the tax-free status conferred by the IRS on 501(c)(3) nonprofits. In return, we taxpayers expect Chase Brexton leaders to deliver on the organization’s mission and to soundly, ethically, and legally manage its public resources.

The path forward: 1987 through 2016

Only a few decades ago, the LGBT community at Hopkins struggled to establish a presence on campus. Now, Hopkins students who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer have a number of resources and support groups available to them. But the road there was not easy.


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