ASBURY PARK PRESS

8-13-72

 

DISCRIMINATION HIT

Mother Supports Homosexual Son

 

By LEONORE V. ACANFORA

The future of my son, Joseph, is presently in the hands of Pennsylvania Secretary of Education John Pittinger.

Having graduated as valedictorian of Brick High School in 1968, earned a 3.34 grade point average at the Pennsylvania State University (PSU), received excellent evaluations as a student teacher from his supervisor and students, and graduated this June from PSU, Joseph may now be denied the right to teach earth and space science in the state of Pennsylvania.

Why?

Because he has had the honesty and courage to admit that he is a homosexual, a member of an extremely oppressed, abused, and misunderstood minority.

I am writing the following statement to seek support for my son from the people of Pennsylvania and all others concerned.

 

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Twenty-two years ago, I gave birth to a wonderful son, Joseph. One year later I had a beautiful baby girl. It was a big job for both my husband and me, as it is for any parents who try to do what is best for their children. We now have at home an 8-year-old daughter and have one grandchild.

Today, we are faced with my son being a homosexual.

Joe was a very special child. He needed very little discipline and was filled with love and kindness. We were often complimented on what a fine person Joe was by the people who really knew him. I could see the interest he had in life and things about him. I taught Joe never to be prejudiced, for we all came from the same place.

Most important, in this world, we have to stand up for what we believe to be right.

One day, Joe came to us and told us he was a homosexual, how he felt about it, and why. He knew we were confused and knew little on the subject. To enlighten us, he suggested we read newly published books on homosexuality. We also spoke to our family doctor about Joe’s revelation. We were very thankful that Joe came to us so that we could learn and understand what being a homosexual really is.

I never before realized how ignorant I was and many people are on the subject and how wrong most of our ideas are about homosexual people. My son told me how some homosexuals cannot even go home because their families have disowned them.

I have been visited by many of my son’s homosexual friends. They were respectful, kind, cleanly, and intelligent people. If there is any fear or doubt in anyone’s mind about a healthy homosexual, put aside your prejudice, take a little time, and find out the truth for yourself.

You owe it to your homosexual relatives and friends who are forced to hide from you because of your prejudices.

God put millions of homosexuals in our country and on this earth just as he did the heterosexuals. Yet, most of these boys and girls and men and women have no one to turn to. My heart is sad for the homosexual who does not accept him or herself. Someone must educate the world on homosexuality and end the heartless cruelty.

I am proud Joe is my son and is strong enough to stand up for what he believes in. He is only trying to help educate and improve the world. All I can say now is, how lucky can you get when you have a son like Joe?

Please support my son. We must all work together to make this a happier and more human world.

(The author, a resident of Brick Township, submitted the above article as a letter to the editor.)