Saturday, December 30, 2006

GLBT DIGEST - December 30, 2006

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The New York Times

December 30, 2006
Under Madam Speaker, Conflict Gives Way to Collaboration

When Christine C. Quinn became speaker of the New York City Council lastJanuary, she inherited a rabble-rousing body that relished its role asheckler of the establishment.

She was the first female speaker and the first to be openly gay, and she hadalready clashed with Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg over his stand on gaymarriage and his plans for a football stadium on the West Side.

But over the last year, Ms. Quinn, 40, has broken with Council tradition andreshaped the institution from a theater of opposition to a rigidlydisciplined body where, in exchange for private collaboration, open dissentis barely tolerated.


The Advocate


People of the year

We have gay bloggers, freedom riders, whistle-blowers, pilots, straightallies, sports legends, and people who just want to get married: TheAdvocate salutes 55 remarkableindividuals who stood up, spoke out, and rocked our world in 2006

Online profiles:

Cholene Espinoza & Ellen Ratner
Jake Reitan & Haven Herrin
Wayne Besen
Mitchell Gold
Helena Stone
Russ Feingold

The anti-ex-gay

Wayne Besen

From The Advocate January 16, 2007

When Wayne Besen heard that President Bush had invited Alan Chambers, headof the “ex-gay” group Exodus International, to a June 2006 White House pressconference in support of amending the U.S. Constitution to ban same-sexmarriage, he reached into his pocket and bought a plane ticket toWashington, D.C. “That was one straw too many,” Besen says. “I rented a roomat the National Press Club and flew in a kid who had been hurt by an ‘ex-gay’camp.” Besen, 36, held his own press conference to educate people on theharmful nature of the “ex-gay” movement.

Author of the 2003 book Anything but Straight: Unmasking the Scandals andLies Behind the Ex-Gay Myth, Besen has in recent years become a powerfulforce against those who argue that gays are called by God to “change” theirsexual orientation.


The Advocate

|| Cover story ||

Bill Maher doesn't care if you're gay (and that's why we love him)
Our 2006 Advocate Person of the Year is a regular guy who speaks his mind,makes TV that matters, and proves to America that real men don't sweat thegay stuff.

By HeathCliff Rothman

From The Advocate January 16, 2007

He's about as fearless a voice as we have in America right now. If you tellhim that, as I did, over drinks at the Beverly Hills Hotel-just down thestreet from where he lives-he'll scoff and remind you that bravery involvesdismantling bombs. But gays have no better friend in the media than BillMaher, who treats the still-verboten topic of total equality for gays andlesbians-from gay marriage to gay sex to gay anything-with nonchalantconviction as he muses, pontificates, jostles, and hammers mainstreamAmerica weekly from his television platform. Maher was practicallyincinerated by the media and the public immediately following 9/11 when hesuggested that the hijackers were brave in their own way-a statement hemeant not as a compliment but an acknowledgment of fact-and lost his ABCplatform, only to rise like a phoenix on the more hospitable HBO with hisweekly Real Time With Bill Maher.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Jamaican Lesbian Fails to Win Relief under Convention Against Torture

by New York Law School Professor Arthur S. Leonard, December 28, 2006 inLegal Issues

The federal appeals court in Philadelphia has upheld a decision by the Boardof Immigration Appeals that a lesbian from Jamaica had failed to show thatthings are so bad for gay people there that she would face a risk of torturewere she to be returned to her homeland. Rejecting an appeal by MarciaForrester, the court ruled in Forrester v. Attorney General, 2006 WL 3789329(Dec. 27), that although there was evidence of intolerance by the Jamaicanpublic, there was no proof it was abetted by the government.

Ms. Forrester attained legal immigrant status in the United States in 1992,but was convicted of being involved in drug dealing in 2003. The JusticeDepartment considers this to be the kind of serious offense that justifiesloss of legal status and deportation under the immigration laws, but suchdeportation can be blocked if an individual can show that there is a seriousrisk that they will be subjected to serious injury or torture upon return totheir home country due to their membership in a particular social group.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

MA: Gay marriage showdown expected Tuesday

MetroWest Daily News, MA, December 29, 2006
Gay marriage showdown expected Tuesday
By Emelie Rutherford, Daily News Staff

After lawmakers last month delayed voting on a gay marriage ban until thelast day of the legislative session on Jan. 2, some gay marriage supportersjoked there would be a "really big snowstorm" that second day of January.

The proposed referendum on same-sex nuptials will die if lawmakers don'tvote on it at Tuesday's Constitutional Convention. And there are ways gaymarriage backers in the Legislature can avoid a vote, including staying hometo prevent a quorum and not taking a vote on the measure before midnight.

State Rep. Thomas Sannicandro, D-Ashland, said even though the state's highcourt ruled lawmakers have the constitutional duty to vote on the ballotinitiative, gay marriage supporters have not ruled out using procedural waysto kill the measure.


From Jesse Monteagudo

Jesse's Journal

by Jesse Monteagudo

"The Dream of a Gay Nation"

The Dream of a gay nation was born in the "heroic age" that followed theStonewall Riots (1969-1971), when militants tried to imitate the work ofZionists and others to create an autonomous "gay nation." L. CraigSchoonmaker, head of the aptly-named Homosexuals Intransigent!, argued thatgays could never achieve equality as permanent minorities in a country wherethe majority rules. According to Donn Teal's activist history, The GayMilitants, Schoonmaker urged gays to "become the majority." by designating"certain geographical areas for demographic takeover by homosexuals. Weshould leave the farms and villages, the small towns and small cities, andcome to specific neighborhoods of specific big cities. We should take overentire election districts and cities, and vote our people in to speakmilitantly for our rights. The blacks have done it. Puerto Ricans,Italians, Irish, and others too. It works...." Schoonmaker's plan was to"create a homosexual majority in Manhattan's 19th and 20th CongressionalDistricts - which we have designated the 'First Gay-Power District.'"



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

MA: Gay marriage supporters left with choice: follow law or heart

Associated Press via Boston Globe, MA, December 28, 2006

Gay marriage supporters left with choice: follow law or heart
By Steve LeBlanc, Associated Press Writer

BOSTON --Throughout the gay marriage debate, opponents of a proposedconstitutional amendment outlawing same-sex marriage argued nothing in theMassachusetts Constitution required lawmakers to vote on the measure.

On Wednesday, the Supreme Judicial Court stripped away that argument andleft lawmakers who support gay marriage with the starkest of choices: eitherfollow the constitution and allow a vote; or follow their heart and doeverything they can to avoid a vote.

For die-hard gay marriage backers like Rep. Carl Sciortino, D-Somerville,the choice is clear.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Kan. attorney general blocked in prosecution of abortion doctor

John Hanna, The Associated Press, Dec 29, 2006

TOPEKA, KAN. - Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline spent more than two yearsinvestigating a nationally known abortion provider, but he'll likely leaveoffice next month with little to show for it.

A judge Wednesday refused to reinstate the 30 criminal charges Kline filedagainst Dr. George Tiller, and Kline's successor said Thursday that he won'tkeep the special prosecutor Kline appointed on the case.

Democrat Paul Morrison, who defeated Kline in November and takes office asattorney general Jan. 8, did not rule out an investigation into Tiller.

But he said any investigation won't involve Kline's special prosecutor.Kline on Wednesday had named Wichita lawyer Don McKinney, saying having himas a special prosecutor would keep politics out of the investigation. ButMcKinney, who had campaigned for Kline, is viewed as a strong anti-abortionactivist.

"He is extraordinarily political and, in my opinion, would absolutely notpresent any kind of independent perspective," Morrison said Thursday.


The Advocate

Study: Most gay teens don't reveal their sexuality to doctors

Only about one third of gay, lesbian, and bisexual teens involved in arecent study said they tell their doctors about their sexual orientation.The survey, released by the RAND Corporation on Thursday, revealed that eventhough 70% of those who took part said they were aware of their sexualorientation as teens, just 35% told their doctors.

"We were surprised by these results," Garth Meckler, assistant professor ofemergency medicine and pediatrics with the Oregon Health and ScienceUniversity, Portland, told United Press International. "We figured theywould have a higher disclosure rate than most youth, and yet, despite beingout to almost everyone in their lives, only 35% had told their doctor abouttheir sexual orientation."


The Sun-Sentinel,0,3708390.story

Politicians' books take on religious right

By Richard N. Ostling
The Associated Press For AP Weekly Features

December 30, 2006

During this election year, U.S. publishers have put out 20-some booksassailing religious conservatives' political activism, often with angrytitles such as Religion Gone Bad or The Hijacking of Jesus.

Now two prominent "mainline" Protestants are sounding off with somewhat moremoderate pre-election manifestos.

One is Faith and Politics: How the `Moral Values' Debate Divides America andHow to Move Forward Together (Viking) by John Danforth, former RepublicanU.S. Senator and United Nations ambassador.

The other is Middle Church: Reclaiming the Moral Values of the FaithfulMajority From the Religious Right (Simon & Schuster) by Bob Edgar, formerDemocratic Congressman and now National Council of Churches generalsecretary.

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