Monday, May 21, 2007

GLBT DIGEST May 21, 2007

**IF YOU CAN'T ACCESS THE FULL ARTICLE, CONTACT US AT rays.list@comcast.net and we'll be happy to send the full article.


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washingtonpost.com

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/19/AR2007051901410_pf.html

Florida Group Cheers Brownback, Huckabee

By BRENDAN FARRINGTON
The Associated Press
Saturday, May 19, 2007; 10:50 PM

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Longshot Republican presidential candidates Sam Brownbackand Mike Huckabee were well received by a socially conservative group whoapplauded their anti-abortion, anti-gay marriage and pro-faith messagesSaturday night.

Neither candidate mentioned topics like the Iraq war, taxes and health careduring speeches in front of a Florida Family Policy Council dinner, insteadsticking with a strong message on values. They received rave reviews fromattendees, including Sen. Mel Martinez of Florida, who also serves as theRepublican National Committee general chairman.

"I am completely blown away by the two men we heard tonight," Martinez toldthe crowd of about 650 at the event.

The crowd, some of whom are looking for an alternative to major candidateslike former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Arizona Sen. John McCain andformer Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, also seemed impressed.

"The top tier, in my estimation, does not fit the definition of what a trueconservative has historically been in this country," said Roy Tanner, 50, ofOrlando. "If it is meant to be, these guys will break out of the pack. I'dbe happy if either got elected."



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Forwarded from Steve Krantz, President
PFLAG Los Angeles

PFLAGers - I wrote the following for the subject newsletter (seehttp://www.pflagla.org/resources.html to get a PDF version). I am speakingfrom my heart on this, my 60th birthday. Regards, Steve.

President's Column:

I am a frustrated PFLAGer. I am frustrated because there are too few membersof gay families who are willing to stand up and fight for the rights of gaypeople. Oh, yes, we see one or two new moms and dads come through our doorsto our monthly support meetings, tell their stories, get support, get someeducation. However, most of them never return, never come back to standwith the activists in the chapter to fight for the rights of their gay,lesbian, bisexual or transgender family members.

When I describe myself to others, I say that I am a gay rights activist.What does that mean? It means that I won't accept the fact that my son, whohappens to be gay, is a second class citizen in this state or in thisnation. That I will fight until my dying breath for him to have ALL therights that heterosexuals enjoy - including marriage. That I will tell thetruths about what it means to be LGBT to anyone who will listen. That I willuse the media in all its forms for my message of LGBT rights.

I use all of my "personae" to achieve the goal of equality for LGBT persons.I stand up as a PFLAG Dad. I stand up as a member of my faith community. Istand up as a member of my political party. I stand up as an employee of mycompany.

We need the power of every PFLAG PARENT to do the same. We need to take thebully pulpit away from the heinous religious leaders who demonize ourchildren. We need to take the bully pulpit away from the cowardlypoliticians who mince words and distance themselves from the morality of ourcause.

I challenge all of you who read this newsletter to stand with me. Onlytogether, will we achieve true equality in California for our children.Please email me at stevek@bipedinfo.com if you will join me on the frontlines - as PFLAG parent volunteers, as PFLAG LA Board members, as truthtellers to the world. Please don't stand idly by.




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http://www.ny1.com/ny1/content/index.jsp?stid=9&aid=69891

New Yorkers March For Same-Sex Marriage Bill
May 19, 2007

Supporters of same-sex marriage rights rallied Saturday -- calling on thestate to legalize gay marriage.

Advocates held a march across the Brooklyn Bridge from Manhattan toBrooklyn.

"We aren't here in favor of mandatory gay marriage. We are neitheradvocating that people become gay or become married. We are saying thatthere's a certain dignity this country aspires to," said RepresentativeAnthony Weiner.

Politicians, as well as couples looking to marry, were emboldened by therecent actions of Governor Eliot Spitzer. Last month, he proposed givingsame-sex couples the same marriage rights as straight couples.

Currently, Massachusetts is the only state to allow gay marriage. Otherstates, like New Jersey, permit civil unions.



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Gay.com

http://uk.gay.com/headlines/11580

Teen charged in gay slaying
Barbara Wilcox, The Advocate
Sunday 20 May, 2007 21:24

An 18-year-old has been charged with murder in the death of a gay man in USstate South Carolina who suffered fatal injuries after being punched in theface outside a bar that was having a "Teen Night."

Investigators believe Sean Kennedy, 20, was targeted because of his sexualorientation, the Greenville News reported Friday. Kennedy's friends toldauthorities he was openly gay.

Stephen Andrew Moller, 18, is charged in the killing and being held withoutbail.

Deputies believe he made a derogatory comment about Kennedy's sexualorientation either before or during the assault early Wednesday, in which aman stepped out of a silver car, punched Kennedy once in the face and droveoff.

Kennedy fell and struck the back of his head on the pavement; he was foundbleeding and unresponsive, and died late that night at hospital. There weremany witnesses, and Moller was arrested the next day.



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Spiegel Online

http://www.spiegel.de/international/0,1518,druck-483926,00.html

NO BIG NEWS HERE
Gay Britons Serve in Military With Little Fuss
By Sarah Lyall

The British military's policy to allow homosexuals to serve in the armedforces has for the most part become a nonissue.

The officer, a squadron leader in the Royal Air Force, felt he had nochoice. So he stood up in front of his squad of 30 to 40 people.

"I said, 'Right, I've got something to tell you,' " he said. " 'I believethat for us to be able to work closely together and have faith in eachother, we have to be honest and open and frank. And it has to be a two-wayprocess, and it starts with me baring my soul. You may have heard somerumors, and yes, I have a long-term partner who is a he, not a she.' "

Far from causing problems, he said, he found that coming out to his troopsactually increased the unit's strength and cohesion. He had felt uneasykeeping the secret "that their boss was a poof," as he put it, from peoplehe worked with so closely.

Since the British military began allowing homosexuals to serve in the armedforces in 2000, none of its fears -- about harassment, discord, blackmail,bullying or an erosion of unit cohesion or military effectiveness -- havecome to pass, according to the Ministry of Defense, current and formermembers of the services and academics specializing in the military. Thebiggest news about the policy, they say, is that there is no news. It hasfor the most part become a nonissue.



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The Buffalo News

http://www.printthis.clickability.com/pt/cpt?action=cpt&title=Fired+BPO+musician%26%238217%3Bs+allegation+of+anti-gay+bias+to+get+hearing&expire=&urlID=22405898&fb=Y&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.buffalonews.com%2Fcityregion%2Fstory%2F80617.html&partnerID=173606

Fired BPO musician's allegation of anti-gay bias to get hearing
By Tom Buckham NEWS STAFF REPORTER
Updated: 05/21/07 6:37 AM

Allegations that the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra fired a musician threeyears ago because he protested the anti-gay bias of a fellow musician willbe explored during a state Division of Human Rights hearing next month.

Discrimination complaints filed by J. Bud Roach, the orchestra's formersecond oboist, charge that in February 2003 - a year before his dismissal -first oboist Pierre Roy remarked during an audition for prospective BPOmusicians, "We wouldn't want any more fags in the orchestra."

Roach, who is gay, alleges that when he complained to Music Director JoAnnFalletta about Roy's comment, which he heard secondhand, she urged him todrop the matter because "these things can get messy." He further claims thatafter he took his case to the state in late 2003, the BPO retaliated bydismissing him.

The musician's allegations surfaced this week in a statement issued on hisbehalf by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation.

Reached by telephone in Canada, where he is now a teacher, Roach said thatwhen he visited Falletta's dressing room in February 2003 to complain aboutRoy's comment, she did not question his musicianship.



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Advocate.com

http://www.advocate.com/news_detail_ektid45349.asp

05/19/07-05/21/07
Police investigate possible hate crime in South Carolina

In what may be an antigay hate crime, a 20-year-old man was killed Wednesdaynight after being struck in the face and sustaining a blow to the back ofhis head when he fell to the pavement, according to GreenvilleOnline.com.

Sean Kennedy was attacked around 3:45 a.m. outside a bar in Greenville, S.C.Police have charged 18-year-old Stephen Andrew Moller with striking Kennedy,and they believe the attack was motivated by the fact that Kennedy was ay.Investigators believe Moller commented on Kennedy's orientation eitherbefore or after the attack.

The case has been turned over to the FBI, who will decide whether or not toproceed with a hate-crime investigation. Since South Carolina has nohate-crimes laws, a federal agency would have to make the charges.

When deputies arrived on the scene, Kennedy was found bleeding andunresponsive. He later died at Greenville Memorial Hospital. (The Advocate)



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The Advocate

http://www.advocate.com/print_article_ektid45304.asp

The Reverend Mel White remembers the late Jerry FalwellSoulforce cofounder Mel White knew two Jerry Falwells: the evangelicalpreacher who spewed hate from the pulpit and the family man who wasn't sobad once you got to know him.

As Told to Michelle Garcia

During his years of concealing his own same-sex urges, the Reverend MelWhite was a ghostwriter for iconic antigay evangelical figures such as PatRobertson and Billy Graham. When the Reverend Jerry Falwell got wind ofWhite's prowess, White was recruited to pen Falwell: An Autobiography,published in 1987. Eventually White came out and became a voice, as thecofounder of Soulforce, for open and closeted LGBT people against thereligious right's condemnation. Here, White remembers his relationship withFalwell, who died May 15, and looks to the future of the antigay movement.

I was in the dentist's chair when I heard that Jerry Falwell passed away. Icouldn't believe that I started crying. I had to find an office and I justcried. I was trying to think, Why the heck am I crying? I think I was cryingfor his family. He was a great father and husband, and he was a really goodpastor-I've been going to his church for years, so I know-and he was areally good president of a university. There are 20,000 students at LibertyUniversity, which Falwell founded, and they all like him.

I knew there would be just a huge hole in Virginia and in Lynchburg, and Ifelt for those people. But at the same time I was feeling more strongly thatnow we'll never have a chance for Jerry Falwell to say, "I was wrong. I didwrong, and I said wrong, and I'm sorry. God creates gay people and lovesthem just like she created them. I'm not going to say anything more againstgay people because I was wrong." Imagine the consequence that would have hadfor so many people. Falwell was the face of homophobia.

Back when I was still afraid that I was sick and sinful for being gay, I gota job as a ghostwriter to get my kids through college. First I ghostwrotefor Billy Graham, and the next thing you know, Jerry Falwell heard, and Iended up ghostwriting his autobiography. When you have to write 450 pagesabout a guy, you get really intimate with him, and I learned about this guyinside and out. I kind of liked him. I didn't like what he said, but he hada private persona that was really quite amiable. After putting myselfthrough exorcism, undergoing electric-shock therapy, and then slitting mywrists and going to the hospital, my wife finally said, "You know, youreally have a life of your own. I like gay people, but I just didn't wantyou to be one."

Eventually I met and fell in love with Gary Nixon, and as soon as I realizedthat my sexuality was a gift from God and got over my fear and guilt, Iwrote Stranger at the Gate, in which I told the leaders of the religiousright that they are doing terrible damage and they must stop.



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The Advocate

http://www.advocate.com/print_article_ektid45335.asp

May 19, 2007
Music firm objects to Fred Phelps video parody of "We Are the World"

A Kansas church known nationally for picketing soldiers' funerals is beingaccused by a music company of violating copyright laws with an Internetvideo parody of the 1980s song ''We Are the World.''

An attorney for Topeka-based Westboro Baptist Church said Thursday theparody, ''God Hates the World,'' is protected under First Amendment rightsof freedom of speech and religious expression. She said the church wouldcontinue to post the video on its Web site.

Westboro Baptist pastor Fred Phelps Sr. has garnered national attention in acampaign against homosexuality. The church contends that soldiers' deaths inIraq and Afghanistan are God's punishment for a tolerance of homosexualityin the United States.

''It's all our effort to deliver a faithful message to this generation,''said Shirley Phelps-Roper, church attorney and daughter of the pastor.

But Warner/Chappel Music Inc. of Los Angeles said the video infringes on itscopyright to ''We Are the World.'' The song raised money for famine relief,and the video featured some of American music's biggest stars, including RayCharles, Stevie Wonder, and Bruce Springsteen.



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365gay.com

http://www.365gay.com/Newscon07/05/052007marmar.htm

Gay Marriage Protest Bridges Country
by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff
Posted: May 20, 2007 - 11:00 am ET

(New York City) Several thousand people rallied for same-sex marriage rightson opposite sides of the country over the weekend, crossing the country'stwo most famous bridges.

In New York hundreds of people marched across the Brooklyn Bridge while inSan Francisco about an equal number made their way across the Golden GateBridge.

Equal marriage legislation has been introduced in the legislatures of bothstates. In addition a lawsuit seeking marriage rights is before theCalifornia Supreme Court.

"If we could combine the California Legislature with New York's GovernorElliot Switzer, who has introduced legislation in support of marriageequality, we would have marriage equality now, and fulfill this quest forbasic fairness for all families," said Pamela Brown, a spokesperson forMarriage Equality USA.

The organization, along with Marriage Equality New York, sponsored the twinmarches.



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365gay.com

http://www.365gay.com/Newscon07/05/052007ncban.htm

NC GOP Bids To Force Gay Marriage Ban Vote
by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff
Posted: May 20, 2007 - 4:00 pm ET

(Raleigh, North Carolina) Republicans frustrated over thwarted attempts toget a House vote on a proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sexmarriage say they will use a procedural tactic this week to get the measureon the House floor.

North Carolina already has two laws limiting marriage to opposite sexcouples. One says that marriage licenses can be issued only to couplescomprised of a man and a woman. The other prevents the state fromrecognizing same-sex marriages performed in areas where they are legal.

But supporters of the amendment say they fear both laws could be overturnedin state court.

For the past three years the Democratically-controlled legislature hasrefused to take up the amendment issue.

The amendment's to main sponsors, Rep. Linda Johnson and Rep. Tim Moore,both Republicans, say they will introduce a motion this week to force HouseSpeaker Joe Hackney (D) to let House members vote on the bill.


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The Detroit News

http://detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070521/OPINION03/705210317

Deb Price

How Falwell helped foster gay rights progress

Jerry Falwell was confronted during a 1984 TV talk show by audience memberJerry Sloan, a friend from their Baptist bible college days.

Why, the Californian asked, had the televangelist called the gay-friendlyMetropolitan Community Church a "vile and Satanic system (that) will one daybe utterly annihilated"?

Falwell denied making the slam and told Sloan he'd give him $5,000 if hecould prove otherwise.

Sloan produced evidence. When Falwell refused to pay up, Sloan sued, won andused his winnings to start Sacramento's gay community center.

"Jerry Falwell is indirectly one of our community center's godfathers,"Sloan quips.

Falwell was a big talker. The power of his voice turned his 35-membercongregation into a mega-church, launched the Moral Majority and drewcountless fundamentalist Christians into politics. Words were his weapons.The damage they inflicted didn't die with him.

In Falwell's distorted version of Christianity, "AIDS is the wrath of a justGod against homosexuals." His blend of old-time prejudices stunted ournation's growth and is a prime reason it continues to lag behind much of theWestern world in treating those of us who're gay with fairness.

But, ironically, Falwell was the unintentional godfather of some creativegay-rights projects. Soulforce, dedicated to peacefully challenging anti-gayreligious leaders, was started by former Falwell ghostwriter Mel White.Soulforce sponsors the Equality Riders, young Christians who travel fromcampus to campus, urging evangelical colleges to embrace their gay students.

Falwell unintentionally spurred many folks to rethink their attitudes whenhis words proved too outrageous. Immediately after Sept. 11, Falwell blamed"the pagans and the abortionists and the feminists and the gays and thelesbians all of them who try to secularize America -- I point the finger intheir face and say, 'You helped this happen.'" He later apologized.

By then, his influence was waning: America is increasingly intolerant ofintolerance. When Falwell's National Liberty Journal trashed the purpleTeletubby, Tinky Winky, in 1999 -- "his antenna is shaped like a triangle --the gay pride symbol"-- gay-friendly young parents rallied behind TinkyWinky.




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Forwarded from Marc Adams
Volunteer Executive Director - HeartStrong
http://heartstrong.org/

Dear HeartStrong Friends,
We are almost finished with our 19th Outreach/Educational trip. It has
been quite a trip. We've just wrapped up a week of programs and outreachin North Carolina and have returned to Florida for our final three weeksof outreach and educational work.

We are so grateful to those of you who have provided financial support toHeartStrong during this trip. We now only have about $2000.00 needed tofinish this trip without any left over expenses. So thank you for yourhelp!

In addition to the remaining work and the last $2000.00 needed forexpenses, we are hard at work scheduling our programs for our 20thOutreach/Educational trip which will begin mid-August.

Our 20th Outreach/Educational Forum Trip begins mid-September2007. TheHeartStrong Outreach Team will spend a minimum of 60 days providingoutreach as well as holding educational forums.

This trip will include outreach/education in CA, AZ, NV, NY, RI,MA, NH, CT, MA, PA, OH, MO, IL IA, IN, NJ, DC, DE and NJ.

If you belong to a social, political or religious organization andwould like to sponsor an educational forum for HeartStrong pleasecontact me at marcadams@heartstrong.org

We've also dedicated most of the May newsletter to discuss the twothings HeartStrong needs the most.

The first thing is money. If you are not a regular supporter ofHeartstrong, please use the form below or go to our website to make afinancial contribution.

The second thing is volunteers. We've printed our complete list ofvolunteer opportunities in the May newsletter. You don't have to be aformer student from a religious school to help HeartStrong. In fact, forall of these volunteer opportunities, the only thing required for all ofthem is that you have your own computer and internet connection. You mayalso view the list of volunteer opportunities online athttp://www.heartstrong.org

HeartStrong needs your help. With your financial help and volunteeringwith HeartStrong, more students can be reached with our life-savingmessage.

As always, if you have questions and your contribution or aboutvolunteering, please contact me at marcadams@heartstrong.org

I look forward to hearing from many of you. Thanks again for yourconsistent support of this work.


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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

Gay Activists Poised for Warsaw Rights Rally

19.05.2007
Deutsche Welle
http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,2144,2543504,00.html

Gay rights campaigners from Poland and across Europe gathered Saturday fortheir annual rally which has been galvanized by what activists say isrampant public and official homophobia.

A string of politicians from other European Union countries where the lot ofgays and lesbians is better than in Poland were expected to join the march,organizers said.

Among them were Sweden's European Affairs Minister Cecilia Malmstroem,German Green Party chief Claudia Roth, plus her party colleague Volker Beckand Spanish Socialist lawmaker Pedro Zerolo, both leading gay activists.

"We are also expecting plenty of homosexuals from abroad, especially fromGermany, the Netherlands and France," Robert Biedron, president of theCampaign Against Homophobia, told AFP ahead of Saturday afternoon's parade.

The Equality March, which drew only a few score demonstrators when it beganin 2001, now attracts several thousand people who in recent years have facedofficial bans and violent protests by far-right groups.

"Climate of fear"


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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

THE LEGACY OF FALWELL'S BULLY PULPIT
By Hans Johnson and William Eskridge
Saturday, May 19, 2007; A17

In striving to distinguish between the passing of a man and the impact ofhis activism, the gay community and its allies show a moral and strategicsophistication that is itself a legacy of the Rev.Jerry Falwell.

For 30 years, the televangelist from Lynchburg combined lacerating sermonswith loving disclaimers to rekindle and redirect the religious right. Gayadvocates, gradually realizing that they could not beat him throughvehemence alone, learned to seek out religious spokespeople, cultivatemultiracial alliances and trade diatribe for discipline so as to useFalwell's polarizing statements to gain moderate supporters.

The ability to distinguish between individuals and the larger causes theyare part of is a ground rule of both family values and public life. But itwas not always a hallmark of Falwell's ministry.

Falwell became a household name in the late 1970s with attacks onhomosexuality that were often crude and dehumanizing. At a rally in Miami in1977, just days before a referendum on a recently approved local ordinanceto outlaw bias against gays, Falwell told the crowd that "so-called gayfolks would just as soon kill you as look at you." Voters repealed theordinance.



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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

Thousands march in Warsaw's gay rights parade

The Associated Press/International Herald Tribune
http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/05/19/europe/EU-GEN-Poland-Gay-Rights.php

Saturday, May 19, 2007

WARSAW, Poland: Thousands of people marched Saturday in the capital's annualgay-rights parade, days after the education minister called for a ban on the"propagation of homosexuality" in Poland's schools.

About 5,000 demonstrators marched from parliament through downtown, amid aheavy police presence, led by a truck festooned with red, blue, green andpurple balloons and blasting strains of loud music.

Some marchers carried placards reading "Stop homophobia," while others totedrainbow flags, a symbol of the gay community.

"This was the largest parade we've held in Poland," parade organizer TomaszBaczkowski said. "Polish society has opened its eyes and they know whatdemocracy, equality and diversity mean."

The Equality Parade comes as an increasingly vocal gay rights movement facesoff against conservative leaders who have openly denounced homosexuality.

Homosexuality largely remains a taboo in predominantly Catholic Poland andelsewhere in eastern Europe, and activists are up against a widespreadbelief that it is a perversion.

In past years, gay rights rallies in Warsaw and the western city of Poznanresulted in violent clashes but no incidents were reported Saturday.

On Wednesday, Education Minister Roman Giertych called for a ban on the"propagation of homosexuality" in the country's schools, a plan that heargues would protect traditional family values.

Giertych - who leads the ultraconservative League of Polish Families, ajunior partner in Poland's governing coalition - insisted his proposals "donot discriminate against anyone."


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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

http://www.planetout.com/news/article.html?2007/05/17/6


Ohio governor protects LGBT workers

Thursday, May 17, 2007


SUMMARY: Gov. Ted Strickland restores protections for state workers that apredecessor struck down in 2000; without a vote, they expire when he leavesoffice.

Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland signed an executive order Thursday that bansdiscrimination against LGBT state government employees.

In signing the protections, which cover about 60,000 workers, the governoris actually restoring provisions for state workers that existed for 15years, but were struck down by Gov. Bob Taft in 2000.

The governor's order does not need approval by the General Assembly, butwill expire when Strickland leaves office.

His spokesman said the order was the fairest way to ensure "employmentdeciscions are based on performance and not perception."

Ohio-based corporations that ban anti-gay discrimination include Wendy's,Abercrombie & Fitch, Cooper Tire & Rubber, Nationwide, NCR and OwensCorning. Ohio cities that offer the protections include Cincinnati, Toledo,Athens, Cleveland, Columbus, and Yellow Springs, Equality Ohio said Thursdayin a written statement.



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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

Conference on Anti-Gay Attitudes Hosted in Turkey

by Kilian Melloy
EDGE Boston Contributor
http://www.edgeboston.com/index.php?ch=news&sc=glbt&sc2=news&sc3=&id=20474
Friday May 18, 2007

Turkey hosted a two-day meeting on the issue of homophobia this week, withrepresentatives from several nations addressing the problem of anti-gayattitudes in society and in law, both in Turkey and elsewhere around theglobe.

The Turkish Daily News reported today on the meeting, which began yesterdayand continued today. The meeting began with a 20-minute documentary aboutthe plight of gays in Turkey, in which homosexual Turks talking aboutanti-gay prejudice, discrimination, and violence in Turkish law and culture.

One point of discussion was the lack, on the part of the U.N., of auniversal charter that would comprehensively lay out the rights of gays andlesbians internationally. Zehra Kabasakal spoke to this topic, saying, "Wemust recognize the diversity in order to achieve equality for human dignityand we must ensure genuine equality."

Kabasakal, whose specialty is in the fields of women's rights and politicalscience, bemoaned the lack of any concrete statement regarding gays andlesbians in any of the U.N.'s documents.



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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

New Gallup Poll Shows 68% of
Americans Support Hate Crimes Bill before Congress

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 17, 2007
Luis VizcaiƱo | Phone: 202/216.1547 | Cell: 310/869.5700
Brad Luna | Phone: 202/216.1514 | Cell: 202/812.8140

New Gallup Poll Shows 68% of Americans Support Hate Crimes Bill beforeCongress

Poll Shows Overwhelming Support Includes Majority of Republicans,Conservatives, and Religious Voters


WASHINGTON - A new national poll conducted by Gallup shows an overwhelmingsupport of the American people for passage of federal hate crimeslegislation currently being considered in Congress. The poll, conducted onMay 10-13, shows that 68% of all Americans believe that current federal hatecrime laws should be expanded to include "sexual orientation, gender andgender identity". Even more impressive is that this support cuts acrosspartisan, ideological and religious lines with a majority of each of thosedemographic groups supporting the legislation.

"This new national poll continues to reiterate how incredibly out of touchright wing organizations are with the will of the American people andunderscores the need for the Senate to pass this bill," said Human RightsCampaign President Joe Solmonese. "I hope President Bush will look at thispoll and realize how unbelievably out of line a threatened veto of thiscritical crime fighting piece of legislation is with a majority ofAmericans. President Bush's threatened veto isn't even supported by hisbase. The writing is on the wall and it is past time for President Bush tostop bowing to the pressure of James Dobson, Pat Robertson and other rightwing, anti-gay leaders and join the majority of Americans who want to seethis bill become law."





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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

Russia:
St. Petersburg Gay Parade Denied Permission, But Activists Fight On

The St. Petersburg Times Issue #1272 (38)

http://www.sptimes.ru/index.php?action_id=2&story_id=21679

Friday, May 18, 2007
By Galina Stolyarova
Staff Writer

City Hall has refused to give permission for a gay pride parade to be heldon Nevsky Prospekt in downtown St. Petersburg on May 26, citing the tightschedule of already confirmed events in the city center that day.

Russian gay rights activists have previously made two attempts to organize agay parade in Moscow but Mayor Yury Luzhkov fiercely opposed the idea,condemning the parade as "satanic" and swearing he would never allow them totake place in the Russian capital.

Alexandra Polyanskaya, a spokesman of the St. Petersburg parade's organizingcommittee, said it is planning to reapply for permission to hold the paradeon another day.

"Misconceptions about sexual minorities are widespread here," Polyanskayasaid. "Gay people feel they need to show they are normal human beings. Theirsexual orientation does not make them monsters."

Igor Petrov, coordinator of the Russian gay and lesbian network, saidoutdoor festivals of gay culture are essential to resist homophobicattitudes which he said reign in the country.




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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

Lammy Awards Raffle: A "Fun Home" Triptych

Alison Bechdel Creates A "Fun Home" Triptych for the Lambda Literary Awards

Alison Bechdel, author of the celebrated Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic, andthe Alice B. Reader's Appreciation Awards have joined forces to create anextraordinary raffle to raise money for the Lambda Literary Awards, and theFoundation's upcoming Writers Retreat.

Fun Home was named #1 Best Book of the Year by TIME Magazine. Also listed asbest in Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, The Advocate, Out, People,Salon.com, Time Out New York, LA Times, San Francisco Chronicle, amongothers.

The "Fun Home" Triptych, featuring original artwork from page 98,will be ondisplay during the 19th Annual Lambda Literary Awards Ceremony, on Thursday,May 31, in New York City.

The framed item includes three elements: "My black and white line art, withno text. My ink wash shading. And then an inkjet print of the final printedpage," according to Bechdel, who has autographed the pen and ink drawing,the middle piece of the triptych.



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Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
Kenneth.Sherrill@hunter.cuny.edu
kenslist@groups.queernet.org

Planet Out, The Advocate's Owner, In Financial Trouble

From: PressPassQ, an industry newsletter for gay media:

IN THE NEWS: PlanetOut in financial trouble PlanetOut Inc. describes itselfas the leading global media and entertainment company exclusively servingthe GLBT community. But the news wasn't good for the San Francisco-basedcompany when it announced May 10 that its shares plunged to an all-time low.

Even worse, the company said it could run out of money before the end of theyear, reported the San Francisco Chronicle. To save itself, the companyneeds an additional $15 million.

The company reportedly blamed its situation on decreased sales and highercosts, as well as disappointing bookings for its RSVP travel subsidiary.Operating costs grew from $17.7 million a year ago to $23.3 million todaywhile revenues fell.

According to the Associated Press, PlanetOut's shares traded as low as$1.45, before closing on May 11 at $1.64. That's the lowest point for itsshares since the company's initial public offering in 2004.

CEO Karen Magee told analysts that a turnaround will take up to two years.The company hired consulting firm Allen & Co. to help in the turnaround.

PlanetOut's properties include Gay.com, PlanetOut.com, Out&About Travel, TheAdvocate, Out, The Out Traveler, and HIVPlus, as well as SpecPub Inc.titles. Transaction-services brands include e-commerce websitesKleptomaniac.com and BuyGay.com, travel and events marketer RSVP, bookpublisher Alyson Publications, and direct marketer Triangle MarketingServices.



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http://www.news-leader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070517/NEWS01/705170363/1007/NEWS01

Drury University will allow gay and lesbian faculty members to seek benefits for their partners starting June 1.The Drury board approved the policy Friday, becoming the first higher education institution in Springfield to do so. "We look at it as an affirmation of all people's worth in our community," said Drury spokesman Bill Noblitt. "Increasingly it's a common benefit among Fortune 500 companies, our peer institutions and some states."

Charles Taylor, Drury's vice president for academic affairs, said partners of gay and lesbian faculty members will be eligible for medical/dental coverage, tuition assistance, fitness center privileges, library privileges, the university's tax saving plan and coverage under the federal Family Medical Leave Act.

Though domestic partners at Drury soon will be covered, the unmarried partners of heterosexual faculty members are still excluded from benefits."If they are unmarried, our benefits don't cover them," Taylor said. "I don't expect there'll be a challenge on that."Taylor said several gay and lesbian faculty members approached the board and asked for the policy change.


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http://gaycitynews.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=18352281&BRD=2729&PAG=461&dept_id=569346&rfi=6

MOSCOW GAY PRIDE BANNED AGAIN
By: DOUG IRELAND
Gay City News, 05/17/2007

The Moscow Gay Pride Parade has again been banned, the city's authoritiesannounced on Tuesday this week, just one day after organizers formallysubmitted documents requesting a permit for the May 27 celebration, Reutersand the Russian news agencies Interfax and Novosti reported.

In a press conference the same day, leaders of the Moscow Pride event vowedto hold their march anyway.

A planned Pride March in St. Petersburg on the city's main street, NevskiProspect - the first-ever such event planned in Russia's second-largest city- was also banned by municipal authorities there on Wednesday, according theRegnum news agency. St. Petersburg organizers have not yet decided whetherto go ahead with their march despite the ban.

Last year's attempt to hold a Moscow Pride demonstration following a similarban was broken up by police, who allowed fascist skinheads and RussianOrthodox religious extremists to violently attack the gay contingent,injuring a number of participants - including openly gay European politicalfigures who had come to Moscow in support. Volker Beck, a member ofGermany's Bundestag, its parliament, was among those hurt. (See thisreporter's article, "Police, Fascists Crush Moscow Pride," June 1-7, 2006.)



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Md. high court finds paternity laws must apply equally to men and womenByAndrea F. SiegelSun reporterMay 17, 2007

A baby conceived from an egg donated by one woman and implanted inanother may have no mother at all under Maryland law, the state's highestcourt ruled yesterday.

Issued more than four years after the matter was brought to the Court ofAppeals, the 4-3 opinion creates blank spaces under "mother" in the birthcertificates of twins born in 2001 at Holy Cross Hospital in SilverSpring.

The man who arranged for the children to be born from his sperm anddonated eggs, and the woman with whom he arranged to carry them, broughtthe case. The two wanted it made clear that she had no legal claims orresponsibility for the children.

Ever-changing reproductive technologies have far outpaced the law,experts say - a view recognized in the majority opinion.

"What had not been fathomed exists today," Chief Judge Robert M. Bellwrote for the majority. "The methods by which people can produce childrenhave changed."



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http://www.gnn.gov.uk/Content/Detail.asp?ReleaseID=285150&NewsAreaID=2

Thursday 17 May 2007 11:11
Foreign and Commonwealth Office (National)

Ian McCartney statement on Britain's commitment to the decriminalisation homosexuality

On the International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO) Foreign Office MinisterIan McCartney today affirmed Britain's commitment to the universaldecriminalisation of homosexuality. Announcing the development of a new UKstrategy on international LGBT rights he said:

"We have taken a lead in ending discrimination against lesbian, gay,bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in the UK. But elsewhere the pictureremains bleak. More than 70 countries totally prohibit consenting same-sexrelations, and nine countries punish them with death, denying people theirbasic human rights. Every year hundreds of LGBT people are killed simplybecause of their sexual orientation.Some by State execution; many more while the State looks on indifferently.

Many thousands more live in fear of persecution. Human rights belong toeveryone. Sexual orientation cannot be a qualifying factor."



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http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/05/16/ap/supremecourt/main2819598.shtml

Shop Owner Appeals Sex Toys Case

WASHINGTON, May. 16, 2007

(AP) The owner of adult stores in Alabama asked the Supreme Court on Mondayto throw out a state ban on selling sex toys, calling it an unconstitutionalintrusion into the bedroom.

If the court declines to take the case _ as it did in 2005 _ Alabamaresidents shopping for sexual novelties could soon have to look outside thestate's borders.

"A person should have the right to make their own decision to explore theirsexual boundaries outside what some government official says is moral,"Sherri Williams said outside the Supreme Court before filing the appeal.

Williams has waged a mostly losing battle against the law since the statelegislature passed it in 1998.

The Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals dealt her the latestsetback on Valentine's Day, upholding the ban as constitutional and saying"the state's interest in preserving and promoting public morality provides arational basis for the challenged statute."

The state has held off on enforcing the law as the case winds through theappeals process.



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http://www.floridabaptistwitness.com/7366.article

Point of View

Hate crimes, the 'thought police,' and religious freedom

By RICHARD LAND
Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission

Published: May 17, 2007

Would it be possible for a pastor who preaches against homosexuality to becharged with inciting a hate crime? According to an April 25, 2007 Judiciary
Committee, yes.

The Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act (H.R. 1592), whichpassed in the House of Representatives in a veto-susceptible vote of237-180, could well lead to serious infringements of our First Amendmentfreedom of speech protections in the United States. Such legislation has hada very chilling effect on free speech in Canada, Scandinavia and other partsof Europe.

The act would establish a new federal offense for so-called "hate crimes"and add "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" as protected classes, aswell as mandate a separate federal criminal prosecution for state offensesfor crimes motivated by "the actual or perceived race, color, religion,national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disabilityof any person."




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http://news.yahoo.com/s/wjxt/20070517/lo_wjxt/13335346

MySpace Refuses To Release Names Of Sex Offenders Logging On Thu May 17,12:53 AM ET

Whether the popular Web site MySpace should release information about sexoffenders who are logging on to the social network continues to be a debatedissue.

Some government officials said they would like to be able to identify sexoffenders who are on MySpace.

Many parents said they also like the idea.

"I think that if anyone who is a sexual predator, they pretty much lose anyConstitutional right about people knowing where they are," said parent MarcoStolica.

Attorney generals from eight states, including Georgia, said they should bealerted if a sex offender sets up a MySpace account.

However, Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum said the idea would notwork.

"I don't think it's necessary. I don't think it will work. I don't thinkit's sufficient to provide those names," McCollum said.

MySpace has said no to the request to hand over the names, stating therequest is illegal and that privacy laws only allow them to give out theinformation after a subpoena or a court order.

McCollum said Myspace.com already does plenty to protect kids.


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http://www.soulforce.org/email_campaign/images/blank.gif>

Soulforce Mourns the Passing of Yolanda King


Soulforce mourns the passing of Yolanda King, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr'seldest daughter. Yolanda died on Tuesday, May 15, 2007, in Santa Monica,California at the young age of 51.

In May of 2000, Yolanda King joined Arun Gandhi, grandson of MohandasGandhi, and other civil rights leaders in Cleveland, Ohio to protest theantigay policies of the United Methodist Church. Hundreds of people gatheredin Cleveland as Yolanda delivered a powerful speech, calling on all churchesto end their false and unjust campaigns against the lesbian, gay, bisexual,and transgender community.

During the 2007 Soulforce Equality Ride, Ms. King wrote a note to the youngriders that read "To the Equality Riders: continue to live the dream!Blessings, Yolanda King."

Dr. Rodney Powell, a leader of the nonviolent student movement of the 1950sand 1960s, and current Soulforce board member, was with Yolanda in Clevelandand today said, "Yolanda reflected with great clarity that Dr. Kingsupported equality and justice for all marginalized people. She feltstrongly that her father would have been marching and protesting withSoulforce if he were alive today."



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"Hall of Shame" Exposes Dangers of High-Level
Homophobia

For Immediate Release

'Hall of Shame' Exposes Dangers of High-Level Homophobia

International Day Against Homophobia Highlights Persistence of Prejudice

(New York, May 16, 2007) - Pope Benedict XVI, US President George W. Bushand Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have undermined human rights byactively promoting prejudice against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgenderpeople, Human Rights Watch said today in its annual "hall of shame" to markthe International Day Against Homophobia.

On May 17, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender groups in more than 50countries will commemorate the International Day Against Homophobia, aninitiative launched in 2005 that commemorates the day in 1990 when the WorldHealth Organization removed homosexuality from its roster of disorders.

At the same time, Human Rights Watch also pointed to four areas whereadvances in human rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender peoplehave given reason for hope.

"This 'hall of shame' does not claim to include the worst offenders, but ithighlights leaders who have lent their authority to denying basic humanrights," said Scott Long, director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual andTransgender Rights Program at Human Rights Watch. "Bush and Pope Benedictboth speak of human dignity, but their homophobic words and actionsundermine families and endanger health."

Leaders named to the "Hall of Shame" for their actions in the past year are:

Contact Ray's List for the entire list.


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[euro-queer] UK: Homophobia is widespread in the workplace, surveyreveals

Homophobia is widespread in the workplace, survey reveals

One Briton in six has witnessed a colleague being bullied over theirsexuality By Sophie Goodchild, Chief Reporter The Independent
http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/this_britain/article2562756.ece
Published: 20 May 2007

More than five million people - almost one in six adult Britons - have seengay or lesbian colleagues being physically or verbally bullied at work as adirect result of their sexuality.

The findings, based on research commissioned by Stonewall, the gay rightsgroup, reveal workplace homophobia to be widespread. Published this week,the YouGov survey of more than 2,000 people provides a snapshot of attitudestowards lesbians and gay men in Britain and the extent of prejudice againstthem.

British people are largely tolerant of gay people with nine out of 10support ing laws to protect them. But Stonewall said the poll does highlightsignificant pockets of prejudice, especially in the workplace.

Alan Wardle, Stonewall's director of public affairs, said: "We need strongmessages from managers that homophobia will not be tolerated."


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[euro-queer] Hundreds of Poles march in support of traditionalfamily values

Hundreds of Poles march in support of traditional family values

The Associated Press/International Herald Tribune

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/05/20/europe/EU-GEN-Poland-Family-Values-March.php
Sunday, May 20, 2007

WARSAW, Poland: Hundreds of Poles marched through Warsaw on Sunday insupport of traditional family values, a day after thousands turned out forthe capital's annual gay pride parade.

About 800 people, many pushing strollers carrying small children, marchedthrough downtown to promote family-friendly policies such as tax deductionsfor parents, and to oppose abortion and gay rights.

Marchers toted banners reading: "Stop abortion" and "Man and WomanFamily,"while others carried red-and-white Polish flags.

Education Minister Roman Giertych, who leads the ultraconservative League ofPolish Families, a junior partner in Poland's governing coalition, told thePAP news agency he was marching to support family values and to protestSaturday's gay pride march.

"I think that one has to oppose what happened here yesterday," Giertychsaid, referring to the march of 5,000 gay rights supporters. "Revoltingpederasts came here from many countries and tried to impose their propagandaon us."


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[euro-queer] In 2007, no less than 85 member states of the UnitedNations still criminalize consensual same sex acts among adultsMay 17th is the International Day against Homophobia.

ILGA has chosen this time of the year to launch a report on State homophobiaaround the world to raise awareness of the extent of institutionalizedhomophobia around the world.

In 2007, no less than 85 member states of the United Nations stillcriminalize consensual same sex acts among adults, thus institutionallypromoting a culture of hatred.

With this publication, we hope to raise awareness about this reality whichextent remains unknown to the vast majority of people.



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From Donald E. Wildmon
American Family Association

Ford Motor Company is the top pro-homosexual sponsor on network television.That is the result of a 12-week monitoring project by American FamilyAssociation. Other companies listed in the top ten pro-homosexual sponsorsinclude Toyota, AT&T, Procter & Gamble, Revlon, Glaxo Smith Kline, Unilever,Daimler Chrysler, Verizon, and Quaker Oats. To see the complete list of theTop Ten Pro-Homosexual Sponsors, click here .

Here is some information you should know about the monitoring process:

* The programs selected for monitoring were those that Gay and LesbianAlliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), a homosexual organization, identifiedas being supportive of the homosexual lifestyle.

* No one except the networks and sponsors had any foreknowledge ofwhich companies would help sponsor a program. Neither the networks nor thesponsors provide that information to the public in advance.

* To see all ads run by each advertiser and the programs they helpedsponsor, click here .

Sincerely,

Donald E. Wildmon, Founder and Chairman
American Family Association



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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18660657/site/newsweek/

My Life as a Transgender Politician
A former Air Force sergeant (and former man) on running for office as atransgender candidate.
WEB EXCLUSIVE
By Pam Bennett
Newsweek

Updated: 2:21 p.m. ET May 14, 2007
May 13, 2007 - Pam Bennett is 5 feet 10 inches, sports a blonde bob and isthe only transgender running for city council in the United States. Bennett,who is running for a seat in Aurora, Col., transitioned from Bruce DennisBennett to Pam four years ago at the age of 52. The former Air Forcesergeant and aerodefense engineer has no problem telling potential votersabout her past so "there's no guesswork involved."

There's not much about me that isn't known. I've been involved in politicsfor many years-from supporting candidates to raising money-but when you filefor office, you are no longer a citizen. You are a public figure. Thatchanges the dynamics of everything in your life. I had to accept that once Ifiled to run for Aurora City Council, I would immediately become not only oflocal interest, but of international interest too.

You can count on two hands now how many transgender people have run foroffice, but only need to use a couple fingers to represent how many havewon. I knew this going in and I had to be ready for just about everything.

Still, it's extremely rare that I receive negative comments. Almost never.Yes, there is sensationalism and small groups of people who have a problemaccepting things they don't understand, but major changes in attitude havecome in the last five or six years. Cable channels like Discovery, MSNBC,HBO, they started getting involved in transgender life and exploring whatwas going on factually, not sensationally.



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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18619862/site/newsweek/

A NASCAR Racer On Her Sex Change

A NASCAR champion gave up everything to become a woman. Can she reclaim herracing life? A Turning Points essay.

WEB EXCLUSIVE
By Terri O'Connell

Newsweek
Updated: 4:11 p.m. ET May 12, 2007

May 13, 2007 - J.T. Hayes won over 500 regional and national championshipsin go-kart, midget and sprint racing and competed in NASCAR Winston Cupbefore undergoing sex-reassignment surgery in 1994 at age 30. During the twoyears she transitioned from man to woman, the Corinth, Miss., native racedthroughout the South and California, wrapping an Ace bandage over herbreasts to flatten them out ("Boys Don't Cry"-style), wearing baggy T shirtsand tucking her long hair under a baseball cap. Now as Terri O'Connell,she's had very little luck breaking back into the racing world. O'Connellstill lives in Corinth with her elderly mother and is working on a clothingline for female NASCAR fans. The petite redhead is also writing a memoir,"Dangerous Curves," (due this fall). She'd like to get back on the track andis currently looking for a sponsor.

The terms transgendered and professional motor sports just don't gotogether, especially when you say I'm 5 foot 6 inches and weigh 118 pounds.I have girl's body-small, fragile and tiny.




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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18615905/site/newsweek/

Journalist Christine Daniels On Her New Life
Christine Daniels wasn't eager to tell her readers at the Los Angeles Timesabout her new life. Then the e-mails came in.

BY LORRAINE ALI
By Web Exclusive
Newsweek
Updated: 4:11 p.m. ET May 12, 2007

May 13, 2007 - Christine Daniels is the Los Angeles Times's newest sportscolumnist. Well, she's not exactly new. As Mike Penner, she joined the Times23 years ago to write about sports and became one of the paper's mostrespected columnists. But on April 26, Daniels told readers that Mike Pennerwas going on vacation and would return as Christine Daniels. She's not backon the job yet, but Daniels is currently writing about her new self in the"Woman in Progress" blog for the Times's Web site. She granted one of veryfew interviews to NEWSWEEK's Lorraine Ali.

NEWSWEEK: You came out as transgender in your final column under the MikePenner byline. That was incredibly courageous-though pretty shocking formost of your longtime readers. Was that your idea?

Christine Daniels: There was no way in the world I wanted to do that column.I tried talking [the LA Times] out of it. I didn't want to make this public.Two weeks before that column ran I was thinking of quitting the Times. Italked to editors in other sections-the Calendar and Image sections-and Iwas watching the Susan Stanton case from afar. [Stanton, city manager inLargo, Fla., for 17 years, was fired after it became known she wastransitioning.]

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