Sunday, January 28, 2007

GLBT DIGEST - January 28, 2007

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Romney Acknowledges Shift on Abortion

Romney emphasizes conservative credentials, acknowledges he has shifted hisviews on abortion.

Washington, Jan. 28, 2007
By Andrew Miga Associated Press Writer

(AP) Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, seeking to dispel doubtsabout his conservative credentials, acknowledged Saturday that he's shiftedhis abortion views.

"On abortion, I wasn't always a Ronald Reagan conservative," Romney told agathering of conservatives. "Neither was Ronald Reagan, by the way. But likehim, I learned from experience."

During his 2002 campaign for Massachusetts governor, Romney said that whilehe personally opposed abortion, he would leave the state's abortion lawsintact.

In his speech Saturday, he said he had had a change of heart after adiscussion with a stem cell researcher.


Teacher Removed For Having Pupils Draw Male Genitalia On Blackboard
by The Associated Press

Posted: January 28, 2007 - 12:01 am ET

(Yonkers, New York) A teacher has been barred from classes for having hisseventh-grade pupils draw male genitalia on the blackboard during healthclass, school officials say.

The teacher, whose name was not made public, was assigned to administrativeduties and Superintendent Bernard Pierorazio will ask trustees to fire him,Yonkers schools spokesperson Jerilynne Fierstein said.

"There was no way we were going to let him be in front of children," shesaid.

Pierorazio said the teacher opened a lesson on human anatomy and sexualityby asking students in a class of boys and girls to volunteer to come to theboard to draw male anatomy.


Pope Fires New Broadside At Gay Families
by The Associated Press

Posted: January 27, 2007 - 4:00 pm ET

(Vatican City) Pope Benedict on Saturday reiterated his defense of thetraditional family, saying real marriage can only be between a man and awoman.

Benedict's remarks to a Vatican tribunal were the latest by the pontiff onthe issue as the Pope keeps up a campaign against unmarried couples andsame-sex unions.

The Pope warned against what he said was a "cultural context marked byrelativism" and against any views of marriage as merely a legal union "thathuman will could manipulate as it pleases, even depriving it of itsheterosexual nature."

"Each marriage is certainly the fruit of free consent between man andwoman," the Pope said in an audience at the Vatican marking the beginning ofthe judiciary year.

"The union occurs because of the design by God, who has created them maleand female and gives them the power to unite those natural and complementarydimensions forever," he said.


Ellen's Ex, Anne Heche, Splits From Husband
by The Associated Press

Posted: January 27, 2007 - 11:00 am ET

(Los Angeles, California) Anne Heche and her husband are separating afterfive years of marriage, her spokeswoman has announced.

"They have requested that they be allowed their privacy at this time,"publicist Lisa Kasteler said in a statement.

Heche, 37, and Coleman Laffoon, a motion picture cameraman, were married inSeptember 2001. The couple have a 4-year-old son, Homer.

They met while working on a documentary about Ellen DeGeneres'' return tostand-up comedy.


Connecticut Post

Gay couples not satisfied with gains

Connecticut Post Online
Article Last Updated:01/28/2007 08:28:44 AM EST

After taking a year off to gauge the reaction to the state's landmark 2005civil-union law, gay activists and civil libertarians are now ready tocampaign for full marriage rights.

They say the civil-union law - although it was written to provide the samebenefits to committed same-sex pairs that married heterosexuals enjoy -falls short in providing full constitutional protections enjoyed byConnecticut's married couples.

Legislative supporters say the proposal will at least receive a publichearing and possibly a vote in the powerful Judiciary Committee, which wouldthen bring it to the House and Senate for debate. Connecticut, proponentssay, should become the first state to approve a universal-marriage law forgays and straights alike, without the kind of court order that in November2003 changed marriage law in Massachusetts to include same-sex couples.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Gay Democrats Call on Harold Ford to Affirm DLC Opposition to Anti-GayMeasures

Democratic Leadership Council called Past Ford Positions
'Cynical and Desperate'

WASHINGTON, Jan. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, the NationalStonewall Democrats called on the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) toaffirm its past opposition to discriminatory ballot measures that requirestates to bar domestic partnership benefits, civil unions and the legalresponsibilities of civil marriage to same-sex couples. The organizationalso called on Congressman Harold Ford, Jr., whom the Democratic LeadershipCouncil officially announced this morning as its new Chair, to affirm suchpast positions of the organization he will now lead.

"We are asking the Democratic Leadership Council to affirm itsopposition to anti-family constitutional amendments that have beenchampioned by Harold Ford," said Jo Wyrick, NSD Executive Director."Anti-gay populism has failed just about every Democratic candidate who hastried to exploit it, and it has failed Harold Ford. The DLC should not allowsuch diversions that it has labeled 'cynical and desperate' in the past tocorrupt the mission of its organization. The Democratic Leadership Counciland Congressman Ford need to strongly affirm the platform of the DemocraticParty and the past policy of the DLC in opposing these measures."


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Gavin Newsom Gets All Virtual,Talks About His Virtual CareerSuicide / Queerty

- Fri, Jan 26, 2007 -

Gavin Newsom Gets All Virtual, Talks About His Virtual Career Suicide And
About How He's Not About Cheney, At Least One Dem. Pres. Hopeful

Gavin Newsom first caught the national eye back in 2004, when the young SanFrancisco mayor order city clerks to issue same-sex marriage licenses.Though the nearly 4,000 contracts would later be invalidated by theCalifornia Supreme Court, young Newsom became a gay rights icon - and,perhaps, a martyr.

In Switzerland for the World Economic Forum, Newsom sat down to talk to AdamReuters: Reuters News Agency's special "Second Life" correspondent - youknow Second Life: that weird Linden Lab-created virtual world that turnseveryone into Sims characters... No matter, Newsom says that the gay-nupmove may have hindered his own political growth and at least one Democraticpresidential hopeful's not making it any easier:


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

The Washington Blade


Are Prez. Hopefuls 'In It' for Gays?
A Blade Analysis of How LGBT Issues are Shaping Up for the 2008 Race

Jan. 26, 2007

If you thought the gay and lesbian community was going to once again be thewhipping post of Republican Presidential contenders, hang on to your seats.

Witness champion of the Federal Marriage Amendment Sen. Sam Brownback(R-Kan.) last Sunday on ABC's "This Week" as host George Stephanopoulosquestions him about Mary Cheney and gay adoption.

GS: Do you believe it should be legal for gays and lesbians to adopt andbear children?

SB: That's been decided on a state-by-state basis, and it should remain inthose hands.

GS: And in the state of Kansas, what would you vote for?

SB: I try to stay out of state issues where I have a federal mandate and I'mgoing to stay in that area.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Arthur S. Leonard

Possible Reach of Ohio Marriage Amendment Litigated

In November 2004, Ohio voters approved a constitutional amendment to bansame-sex marriage in the state, and also to provide that the state could not"create or recognize a legal status for relationships of unmarriedindividuals that intends to approximate the design, qualities, significanceor effect of marriage." Opponents of the amendment argued, in common witharguments raised in other states considering similar amendments, thatadoption of this language might have far-reaching unintended consequences,such as casting doubt on the validity of a wide range of agreements thatsame-sex partners might make to adjust or protect their legal rights.

Now a case has come along testing these arguments. Two women who used to bedomestic partners are now fighting about custody and visitation rightstowards the little boy whose conception they planned and who they jointlyraised for several years.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Gay-rights foe finds new allies in Slavic churches Full story:

By Janet I. Tu
Seattle Times staff reporter

On a recent Sunday morning, at a strip mall in Kent, a few hundred peoplegathered to worship, rocking out to a band playing contemporary worshipsongs and cheering on the fiery pastor -- all in Russian.

This might seem an unlikely place for Ken Hutcherson -- Redmond's AntiochBible Church senior pastor, who is known for outspoken views againsthomosexuality -- to look for allies in his effort to overturn a state lawbanning discrimination against gays and lesbians.

But then Pastor Andrey Shapovalov asked the children to come forward. Blessthem, he said. "Pray that none of them become homosexuals or lesbians orhave abortions or live a life of crime."


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

DE: Bill seeks partner benefits;Foes view measure as attemptto revive failed legislation

Bill seeks partner benefits; Foes view measure as attempt to revive failedlegislation

By Drew Volturo, Delaware State News

DOVER - Domestic partners of state workers would be eligible for the samebenefits spouses receive under legislation introduced in the GeneralAssembly Thursday.

But the measure could draw opposition from those who believe the bill is asubversive way to back into previously thwarted proposals banningdiscrimination based on sexual orientation.

Under Senate Bill 10, domestic partners - heterosexual and homosexual -would be defined as a "spousal equivalent" if they meet several criteria andwould be eligible to receive benefits such as health care insurance andpension.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List,21985,21127312-661,00.html

Councils back gay unions
By Chris Tinkler

January 28, 2007 12:00am
Article from: Sunday Herald
MELBOURNE councils are backing same-sex unions -- flouting state laws thatdo not recognise them.

The move prompted family advocates to accuse councils of interfering inissues they are not responsible for, instead of providing the servicesratepayers expect.

Australia's Marriage Act only recognises the union between man and woman tothe exclusion of all others.

The Bracks Government has also resisted repeated calls to legalise gayunions.

But Melbourne Council is establishing a relationship register to allow gayand lesbian couples to publicly declare their partnerships with town hallceremonies.

Stonnington and Port Phillip councils may follow suit.

Victorian Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby Group convener Gerard Brody hascalled for all "progressive" local governments to introduce the register,saying it was a major step towards legal gay marriage.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Jackson Hole Star Tribune

Panel passes bill on gay marriage

Associated Press writer Saturday, January 27, 2007

CHEYENNE -- Wyoming would have the authority to void other states' gaymarriages if a bill that narrowly passed a Senate committee Friday isapproved by the entire Legislature.

Massachusetts is the only state that currently grants marriage licenses tosame-sex couples; others permit civil unions, but the proposed law onlypertains to gay marriages.

Wyoming already has a law in place that mandates marriages conducted in thestate must be between a man and woman.

"The bill simply says we would not have to honor same-sex marriages inWyoming that were authorized in some other state," said the bill's sponsor,Sen. Gerald E. Geis, R-Worland. The bill passed the Judiciary Committee 3-2,with the committee's three Republicans voting in favor and the two Democratsopposed.


From Marc Adams

Hi Everyone...

January has almost slipped by but we are hard at work here in Seattle. Ihope that everyone has had a chance to go to http://www.heartstrong.organd check out our school visits pictures. Did you know that theHeartStrong Outreach Team has been doing school visits as part of ourregular outreach for more than TEN years?

You can also hear an interview with me about HeartStrong by clicking here

We are also scheduling our educational forums for our upcoming outreachtrips so if you are interested in helping the team schedule programs withyour group, drop me a line at

Ok, that's it for now. We still need to raise that $2200.00 for lastyear's expenses. If you are able to help HeartStrong with that, you maymake your donation online at

[Send your comments about articles to]


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