I wanted to thank all of you who have sent me emails supportive of my actions against CCGLA. A couple of you have asked why I was pursuing this, and I thought I would post my response to this question here.
Firstly, I believe that the actions of members of the CCGLA Board was in direct violation of the CCGLA Bylaws. The proponents of the action against me have not produced one piece of evidence that justifies the actions taken. I have sought specifics, however these have so far alluded me.
As a board member I have a responsibility to myself, CCGLA members and the State of Texas to abide by the rules of our organization. As the author of the Articles and Bylaws, I understand these rules extremely well, and after providing advice on the violations of the bylaws that occured, I was met with a great deal of hostility (primarily as this was not the way the rules had been interpreted by the CCGLA President and Vice President). As I’ve stated in my lawsuit, I have done nothing to break the rules of CCGLA, and have always acted in the best interests of the organziation at all times.
It should be noted, that as I took on the task of writing the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws for CCGLA in 2003, many discussions took place on how CCGLA should develop as we grew. Our organization was to be about being inclusive and accepting of differing individuals (gay, lesbian, transgender, straight) and their opinions. It was recognized by the original steering committee that for CCGLA to be relevant in our community, we would have to rely on our community for the ongoing success of CCGLA. Many of these factors were then built into our governing documents, to remind us, and future boards of their responsibilities for our organization.
Secondly, and related to my first point, is that I have a personal belief that we should all value the contributions of our diverse community. This doesn’t mean that we agree with them, just that we support a person’s right to express them. Being different is what being gay is all about – at least that is what we are reminded of every day of our lives, and it should be no different within an organization that focuses it’s attention on the GLBT community. Many times, during meetings of the CCGLA Board, I felt that my presence or contribution was not valued, and that the rest of the board would be much happier if I weren’t there. This feeling cannot be quantified, but it was a feeling that I had; and if members of the CCGLA board were true to the belief that all opinions are welcome, then it was clearly not the case during some of these meetings. (It should be noted that this was primarily directed from one or two board members, but the failure of other board members to speak up, suggested that this was a generally supported view.)
Third, I believe that CCGLA needs to be a part of our wider community, as it provides an opportunity to educate our wider community and reduce the fear that is often experienced by individuals (an excellent example of this is the recent constitutional election in Texas). CCGLA should be challenging those fears, and providing opportunities to build our alliances with the straight community. This is one area that I had hoped to build on as a board member of CCGLA, as I feel that it is an major part of our mission that was (is) not being delivered.
Finally, after CCGLA President, Morris Garcia declined to meet with me to attempt to resolve any issues between us, I documented a number of contributions that I have made since rejoining the board in June. I also believe that I have done more than many other board members that have led, or will lead, to an expansion of role (and relevancy) of CCGLA within the general community. The fact that after attempting to resolve this issue, and then with the actions of the board, I was led to believe that the outcome of the meeting on November 20, 2005 had already been determined, and – as I said in my initial media statement – this kind of kangaroo court is not something that should be a welcome direction for an organization like CCGLA.
It is for all these reasons, and those that I have stated in the lawsuit, that I decided to take this action.