Thursday, February 08, 2007

GLBT DIGEST - February 08, 2007

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Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

State News

Committee Considers Bill To Ban Discrimination Because Of Sexual Orientation
Associated Press

The Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee is considering a bill thatwould outlaw discrimination because of sexual orientation.

It would add sexual orientation to a list of prohibited discriminationincluding race, religion, gender and age that are already on the books.

Kansas Equality Coalition chairman Thomas Witt says there is no legalrecourse for someone who is fired for being gay or lesbian.


The Sun-Sentinel,0,4573035,print.story

Mich. Ruling Alarms Gay Rights Advocates

Associated Press Writer

February 8, 2007, 3:49 AM EST

LANSING, Mich. -- A Michigan appeals court ruling that bans publicuniversities and state and local governments from providing health insuranceto partners of gay employees has alarmed gay rights advocates nationwide.

They fear the decision could encourage similar rulings in 17 other stateswhose bans on gay marriage could be interpreted to prohibit domestic partnerbenefits for same-sex couples.

Michigan last week became the first state to rule that public employerscannot offer health benefits if the benefits are based on treating same-sexrelationships similar to marriage.


Express Gay News

Haggard's snake oil

It's the End Times! It's Ripley's Believe It or Not come to life! It's anall-you-can-eat freak-out buffet! I'm not sure what it is, but it certainlyis getting weird out there. A champion hang-glider had her kite shredded andher head pecked in mid-air by a pair of eagles. A group of sharks workedaway for four days and finally succeeded in sinking a shrimp boat. A NASAastronaut drove 900 miles, clad in a trench coat and a diaper to terrify arival in love. And Rev. Ted Haggard, after a mere three weeks of counseling,is now certified 100 percent all-American heterosexual!

The eagles may have been disturbed while nesting, and the boat was probablyleaking tempting shrimp-dribblings. These things happen. But ex-gay afterthree weeks? I thought you had to go to Camp Homo-No-Mo all summer for that.Haggard's Bigot Gawd can work miracles, I tells ya!

Oddly, it's been three months since the revelations regarding Ted'salternative worship-style, and one can't help but wonder what the rest ofthat time was devoted to, if the "cure" took only three weeks. Knocking onthe bedroom door, maybe, and whining, "Please, honey, let me in? It's notlike it was another woman! Honey?"


The Washington Post

Celtics Coach on Gay Player: 'So What?'

The Associated Press
Wednesday, February 7, 2007; 8:53 PM

BOSTON -- Sure, Doc Rivers heard whispers about John Amaechi's sexualitywhen they were both in Orlando. But here's what the former Magic coach knewfor sure: Amaechi was a good scorer, a decent rebounder, a little bit of adefensive liability and "a fantastic kid."

"He's better than a good kid; he's a fantastic kid," Rivers said Wednesdaynight after learning that Amaechi acknowledged he is gay. "John Amaechi,when I was coaching him, was a great kid. He did as much charity work asanybody in our city, and he's still doing it. That's what I wish we focusedon.

"Unfortunately, we're talking about his sexual orientation, which I couldn'tcare a flying flip about."


Northern Ireland Heads Western Bigotry Index

7th February 2007

Northern Ireland has the highest proportion of bigoted people in the thewestern world, according to research by Professor Vani Borooah.

Not only does Northern Ireland - along with Greece - have the highestproportion of bigots, but the bigots are on average more bigoted than thosein other countries.

The main target of the Northern Ireland bigots are homosexuals, followed byimmigrants or foreign workers.

The study was carried out by Vani Borooah, Professor of Applied Economics atthe University of Ulster and John Mangan, Professor of Economics at theUniversity of Queensland and is to be published in the prestigious economicsjournal, Kyklos.



Public Indifferent But Entertainment Industry Still Wary Of Gay Actors
by The Associated Press

Posted: February 7, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Los Angeles, California) Some high-profile gay actors have exited thecloset recently and the fan reaction has been ... almost nonexistent.

A gay man playing a randy heterosexual on TV? The industry still has itsproblems but viewers are just shrugging.

On the most recent episode of ABC's "Grey's Anatomy," T.R. Knight'scharacter eloped to Las Vegas with his gorgeous girlfriend. One weekearlier, after repeated rounds of vigorous sex, he proposed to her in ascene that was romantic, believable - and groundbreaking.



Man To Row Across Atlantic To Draw Attention To HIV/AIDS
by The Associated Press

Posted: February 7, 2007 - 11:00 am ET

(New York City) More than 25 years into the AIDS epidemic, HIV continues tosoar in the black community, and for one activist in Brooklyn rowing soloacross the Atlantic Ocean may be a way to raise awareness of the crisis.

Victor Mooney, 41, a college publicist and AIDS activist, in 2006 had hopedto become the first African-American to row solo across the Atlantic Oceanbut had to be rescued after only a few hours in the water when his boatbegan to leak.

But he will try again later this year and has said he would unveil thedesigns of his new ocean rowboat on Wednesday, timed to coincide withNational Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.



New HIV Infections Hit All Time High In Japan
by The Associated Press

Posted: February 7, 2007 - 11:00 am ET

(Tokyo) The numbers of new infections of HIV and AIDS patients in Japan hitrecord highs in 2006, the Health Ministry said Wednesday, underscoringconcerns over spreading infections.

The number of new HIV infections last year was 914, up nearly 10 percentfrom 2005, according to preliminary data released by the ministry's AIDSSurveillance Committee.

The number of those who developed AIDS in 2006 was 390, up 6.3 percent fromthe year before.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Homophobic bullying campaigns are "failing"

5th February 2007 14:34 writer

High-profile campaigns are failing to make a significant impact inpreventing homophobic bullying, according to the Queer Youth Network.

Their national survey of young people revealed 84% think that anti-gaybullying is getting worse, and 79% said that having a formal school policyto deal with homophobic bullies makes no difference.

The network conduct an annual survey of LGBT young people.



Gay Marriage Bill Introduced In Vermont
by Newscenter Staff

Posted: February 7, 2007 - 3:00 pm ET

(Montpellier, Vermont) Legislation that would replace Vermont's landmarkcivil union law with same-sex marriage was introduced Wednesday at the StateHouse.

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Mark Larson (D) and has 32 house members and10 senators as co-sponsors.
"After seven years of civil unions, this is simply the right thing to do,"Larson said in introducing the legislation.

The measure is similar to one Larson put forward last year but failed togain support.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Gay abuse: Don't suffer in silence
Homophobic abuse is an under-reported crime but do not suffer in silence'.

Research shows that this hate crime is happening across the country, butvictims are not coming forward to tell the police.

Last year, 1,359 homophobic crimes were reported in London, but policeestimate that around 90 per cent of hate crime is not reported. Aspecially-converted i-kiosk has built up a picture of homophobic crime inthe borough. It has confidentially recorded 28 incidents since its launchlast May but only eight people looked for further help from the police orsupport agencies.

Most verbal and physical incidents logged onto the i-kiosk, located at theWindsor Castle pub in Bath Road, Hounslow, were perpetrated by strangers inthe street or a public place.


NOTE: Please take a look at video, rate it and pass it along to friends.

Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2007
Contact: Wayne Besen
Phone: 917-691-5118
Link To Video:


In New Trend, Researchers Speak Out To Stop Manipulation of Science ForPolitical Gain

Sixth Researcher in One-Year Says That Dobson Misrepresented Work,Establishing A Disturbing Pattern

Miami Beach, FLA. - Truth Wins Out unveiled a new video today on YouTubefeaturing a Yale professor who claims Focus on the Family leader JamesDobson "cherry picked" his research. Dr. Kyle Pruett's testimony representsa growing trend where leading scientists are speaking out againstmanipulation of their work by right wing political organizations. Pruettdecided to respond after Dobson misused his research in a guest columnDobson wrote in TIME magazine debasing Mary Cheney's pregnancy.


Chch: Kissing women thrown out of bar

Ref: Christchurch Press (m)

A Christchurch couple enjoying a night out at a central city bar areoutraged that a kiss on the dance floor got them thrown out - apparentlybecause both are women.

Barista Lydia Boyd, who is bisexual, said she was kissing her date on thedance floor of the Grumpy Mole Saloon on Saturday night when a bouncerapproached them.

"He told us that if we were going to do that we had to 'get the f... out',"she said.


The 2007 Soulforce Equality Ride launches in just a few weeks! Fifty-sixriders, fifty days, thirty-two schools, two buses, and thousands ofconversations about social justice for LGBT people.

Did you know that over 200 schools still practice and teach discriminationagainst openly gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students? Take forexample Baylor University with 14,000 students:

"Baylor will be guided by the understanding that human sexuality is a giftfrom the creator God and that the purposes of this gift includes (1) theprocreation of human life and (2) the uniting and strengthening of themarital bond in self-giving love. These purposes are to be achieved throughheterosexual relationships within marriage. Misuses of God's gift will beunderstood to include, but not be limited to, sexual abuse, sexualharassment, sexual assault, incest, adultery, fornication and homosexualacts."

Such policies are not in place just to give LGBT students a false sense ofinferiority and heterosexual students a false sense of superiority. Thesepolicies are strongly enforced! In April 2006 while the first Equality Ridewas on the road, the University of the Cumberlands in Williamsburg, Kentuckyexpelled student Jason Johnson for revealing he was gay on his MySpace page.Other schools state they will let LGBT students attend, but a closerexamination of their policies shows they discriminate against any openly gaystudents.

Before the Equality Ride, the antigay policies of these schools had goneunchallenged. Now in 2007, Soulforce is excited to launch the secondEquality Ride. And from today until March 8th (when the 2007 Equality Ridearrives at the first school) philanthropist and Soulforce supporter BruceBastian will match every financial contribution to the Equality Ride up to$25,000!



Rice Pressed On Fired Gay Linguists
by Newscenter Staff

Posted: February 7, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Washington) Condoleezza Rice got a grilling Wednesday when she bemoaned"the foreign language deficit that we have" and how much the governmentneeds Farsi and Arabic speakers during an appearance on Capitol Hill.

Rice was appearing before the House Foreign Affairs Committee justifying theState Department's proposed budget increases.

After she complained several times that the department was facing a problemfinding translators an exasperated Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-NY) asked why thedepartment had not hired any of the translators fired by the Pentagonbecause they are gay and lesbian.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Winthrop students 'deferred from giving blood' protest FDA policy
By Toya Graham · The Herald - Updated 02/07/07 - 12:14 AM

Some Winthrop University students took issue with a campus blood driveTuesday, saying federal rules for who could donate blood at the American RedCross-sponsored event discriminate against gay men.

"I tried to give blood a few months after I turned 18, but I wasn't allowedto because of the policies they (Food and Drug Administration) have againstsexually active gay males," said Will Thompson, 18, who said he has beenopen about his sexuality for two years.

At issue is an inquiry on a questionnaire that potential donors mustcomplete before giving blood. It asks if potential male donors have hadsexual contact with another male since 1977. This is in line with Food andDrug Administration guidelines that say such potential donors are "deferredfrom donating blood," according to the FDA Web site.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News,0,3219460,print.story

What if being gay is in the genes?
New evidence that the brains of gay rams are like females' could raiseethical issues for humans

William Saletan covers science and technology for Slate, the onlinemagazine. This is excerpted from The Washington Post.

February 6, 2007

Just over the Montana border, closeted in their own private Idaho, the gaysheep were getting it on.

Well, it's not exactly private. They were doing it in front of scientists atthe U.S. Sheep Experiment Station who are conducting "sexual partnerpreference testing." In a 15-by-10-foot "arena," a young ram is offered fourchoices: two ewes in heat, and two rams - all restrained in stanchions. For30 minutes, the subject does as he pleases and the scientists keep score.

A bare majority of rams turns out to be heterosexual. One in five swingsboth ways; 15 percent are asexual, and 7 to 10 percent are gay.



Federal Court Mulls Classroom Gay Subject Matter
by The Associated Press

Posted: February 7, 2007 - 7:00 pm ET

(Boston, Massachusetts) Officials from a suburban Massachusetts schooldistrict asked a federal judge Wednesday to dismiss a lawsuit filed by twocouples who claim their parental rights were violated when homosexuality wasdiscussed in their children's classrooms.

U.S. District Judge Mark Wolf did not immediately issue a decision in thecase from Lexington, but peppered lawyers on both sides with questions andsaid he understood the importance of the case to both parents and schooladministrators.

Tonia and David Parker sued after their 5-year-old son brought home a bookfrom kindergarten that depicted a gay family. David Parker was laterarrested for refusing to leave his son's school after officials would notagree to notify him when homosexuality was discussed in his son's class.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News,0,4491126,print.story

NBA first: Ex-player comes out

Newsday Staff Writer

February 7, 2007

John Amaechi, whose five-season NBA career ended when he was waived by theKnicks in 2004, has become the first NBA player to come out as gay,according to

Amaechi was acquired by the Knicks with Moochie Norris from Houston forClarence Weatherspoon in Isiah Thomas' first trade as team president Dec.30, 2003. Amaechi, who played for Cleveland, Orlando and Utah, never playeda game for the Knicks before his contract was bought out. obtained an advance copy of Amaechi's book, "Man in theMiddle," scheduled for release next Wednesday. He was scheduled to announcehis homosexuality for the first time publicly in an ESPN show to air the daybefore.

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