By: Héctor L. Rosario Pacheco
Aixa Rodriguez, Pedro de Jesus Colon and Rafael Jackson; a group of professionals went to the Celis Building #116 on Wednesday, March 5 to give 3 presentations to commemorate the V Coloquio del Otro La’o: Perspectivas sobre Sexualidades Queer.
Pedro de Jesus Colon talked about the reinterpretation of biblical passages on homosexuality; he discussed how these passages are being interpreted and used by civilization. Rafael Jackson talked about Gloria Anzaldúa and her “queer” resistance. And Aixa Rodriguez talked about Bayard Rustin and the intersection of race and sexual identity 50 years ago.
The presentation started with Pedro de Jesús Colón, former Adventist, talking about biblical passages. He stated that there have been problems with Christianity and religion because of the interpretation of biblical passages.
The reason of this was because some people believe that being homosexual or being attracted to someone of the same gender is against God’s word. So to “punish” homosexuals or civilians attracted to the same gender, many people have manipulated biblical passages in order to hurt them and repress them into thinking that what they’re doing is wrong and that God doesn’t love them and will condemn them.
However Jesús Colón wants to illustrate a new perspective about homosexuality, according to God’s word. He shows new methods of interpreting these biblical passages that will help society be at peace. One of these methods is hermeneutics, which is a way of interpreting biblical passages in a safe and healthy way. It has already been implemented in emergency lines and has great success. In an interview with de Jesús Colón he stated that many of the people that called because they were harassed for being homosexual and wanted to end their lives, they were scared, nervous and had many emotional problems. But thanks to the hermeneutics method they have been able to help them get on with their lives.
After Pedro de Jesús Colón finished, Rafael Jackson, Dr. of philosophy, art history and art theory, continued the presentation talking about Gloria Anzaldúa, a renowned author who made significant contributions to understanding “queer” and to spiritual resistance.
According to the website “Voices from the Gaps” of the University of Minnesota, she is accredited for introducing the term miscegenation in the United States. Lanuza’s paper, read by Jackson, stated that Anzaldúa believed that “spirituality” was the only weapon the oppressed had; it was what kept them fighting to survive in this world. Because of this she asked the people of different races to confront their fear so they can incorporate a world where there is less hate and is better for everyone.
The third presentation was by Dr. Aixa Rodríguez, clinical psychologist and counselor in sexology, who talked about Bayard Rustin. She mentioned that he was the man who organized the “I have a dream” event of Martin Luther King but has been forgotten. She stated that the reason he was forgotten was because he was gay.
Rodríguez recounted that when Rustin was working for Dr. Martin Luther King he was caught having sex with a man in a car. Because of this Martin Luther King was blackmailed into firing him. But after years had passed, he reemerged to fight for the rights of homosexual people and lead a series of activities to claim equal rights.