Monday, June 04, 2007

GLBT DIGEST June 4, 2007

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The New York Times

June 4, 2007
The Mass in Latin (Redux) (2 Letters)
To the Editor:

John L. Allen Jr. gets it wrong when he predicts that the "Catholic left"will decry the pope's forthcoming decision to liberalize the use of theLatin Mass as a step back into traditionalism ("The Pope's Language Lesson,"Op-Ed, May 30).

Indeed, many of us will welcome the fact that someone as busy as the popehas the time and patience to hear the petition of a small group oftraditionalists who have felt marginalized and isolated since Vatican II andwill allow them to experience the Mass in the way they want to.

Such a decision gives the rest of us hope that the pope will also hear thevoices of the millions of Catholics who want him to lift the ban on condoms,give women greater equality in the church and welcome our gay and lesbianbrothers and sisters into the fold.

Jon O'Brien
Catholics for a Free Choice
Washington, May 30, 2007


The New York Times

June 4, 2007
Leadership Questions Emerge at Debate
Filed at 7:19 a.m. ET

MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) -- Questions of courage and political leadershipemerged at the latest Democratic debate, as John Edwards forcefullychallenged front-runners Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama overwhether they had demonstrated leadership on key issues.

Two long shot hopefuls -- Mike Gravel and Dennis Kucinich -- denounced whatthey called the lack of leadership by congressional Democrats after votersreturned them to power last November.

With a new Washington Post/ABC News poll showing Clinton far ahead of herrivals nationally, the former first lady projected an air of confidence anda mastery of the subject matter at Sunday's forum. She also insistedDemocrats should focus their policy critiques on Republicans, especiallyPresident Bush.

''The differences among us are minor. The differences between us andRepublicans are major, and we don't want anybody in America to beconfused,'' she said.

She chuckled as her rivals were quizzed over what role her husband, formerPresident Bill Clinton, would play in a Democratic administration. Theconsensus: He'd be a roving global ambassador.


The Washington Post

'Gay Images': A Rainbow Starts Out Black-and-White

By Tom Shales
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, June 4, 2007; C01

By now it's a truism. The history of homosexuality in America has a naturaldividing line -- before Stonewall and after Stonewall, BS and AS. However itsounds to the naked ear, "Stonewall" was not a prison but a gay bar in LowerManhattan. New York cops tried to stage one of their quotidian raids therein June of 1969, but this time clientele balked, refusing to leave or becarted off to jail and instead staging a riot that lasted for days.

It was the homosexual equivalent of Rosa Parks refusing to move to the backof a bus. Or, to be less reverent about it, the gay Boston Tea Party.

So much for the real history; how about America's communal fantasy life? Itseems obvious: Gays in film divide naturally before "Brokeback Mountain" andafter it -- BBM and ABM (or ICBM?). "Brokeback Mountain" may not be the ostsophisticated, intelligent or even most resonant big-scale mainstream movieabout gay life and love, but as an event it towers over most others, and itseemed to commit fewer of the reigning stereotypes and cliches to celluloidthan any other major film had ever done.

The film is nowhere to be seen, but is likely to be frequently discussed, aspart of "Screened Out: Gay Images in Film," a Gay Pride Month seriesfeaturing major or minor homosexual characters that starts tonight on TurnerClassic Movies, dazzling best of all entertainment cable channels."Brokeback" has aired frequently in recent months on such standard moviechannels as HBO (on Logo, the weak-kneed gay and lesbian channel, it wasseverely censored).

And program notes for "Screened Out" indicate that those who put the seriestogether may think it still too soon to name an all-time, definitivewatershed: "Despite the occasional success of a 'Brokeback Mountain,' themovies are still grappling. 'Screened Out' . . . can serve as a prologue toeverything still being discussed both on and off the screen." One hundredyears and still in the "prologue" stage? It hardly sounds like thegayllennium has arrived.


The Sun-Sentinel,0,577647,print.story

How Anita Bryant fought - and helped - gay rights

Exhibit marks 30th anniversary of S. Florida showdown
By John Tanasychuk
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
June 4, 2007

When the Rev. Jerry Falwell died last month, he was remembered fortransforming religious conservatives into a powerful political force. Butorganizers of an exhibit opening Wednesday in South Florida say Falwell gothis first lesson in politics 30 years ago in South Florida.

In 1977, singer Anita Bryant successfully campaigned to repeal a Dade Countyordinance banning discrimination against gay men and lesbians. Falwell cameto South Florida in support and two years later created the Moral Majority.Jim Bakker, Pat Robertson and Phyllis Schlafly quickly joined Falwell inbecoming outspoken opponents of gay rights.

"This is where they all had their stage debut," said Jack Rutland, executivedirector of the Stonewall Library & Archives and organizer of the exhibit"Days Without Sunshine: Anita Bryant's Anti-Gay Crusade," at the BrowardCounty Main Library in Fort Lauderdale.

Likewise, Bryant's message emboldened gays.

"In a completely unintended way, Anita Bryant was about the best thing tohappen to the gay rights movement," said John Coppola, exhibit curator andformer head of exhibits at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C."She and her cohorts were so over the top that it just completely galvanizedthe gay rights movement."


National Gay News

Sunday, 03 June 2007 12:37
Move Over 'Love Won Out'
Strategist named for homosexual outreach

The following is a copy of an article posted about Bob Stith, and his roleas the head of a new outreach program for the Southern Baptists Conventionon converting gays:

Posted on Jun 1, 2007 | by Dwayne Hastings

SOUTHLAKE, Texas (BP)--Bob Stith officially assumed the role of SouthernBaptists' National Strategist for Gender Issues June 1, leaving thepastorate of Carroll Baptist Church in Southlake, Texas.

It was Stith who, in 2001, introduced a motion at the Southern BaptistConvention annual meeting for the SBC to "establish a task force to inform,educate, and encourage our people to be proactive and redemptive in reachingout to those who struggle with unwanted same-sex attractions."

That task force now will serve as an advisory group to Stith, who isexpected to develop workshops and conferences for training local churchstaff as well as resources for pastors, churches, SBC seminary students andothers to aid in their outreach to the homosexual community.

LifeWay Christian Resources is providing start-up funding for the ministry,including Stith's position.

"When God first convicted me about this issue in 1994, my whole attitudetoward homosexuals was negative and condemning," Stith said. He readilyadmits he is a changed man -- with a passion to tell whomever will listenthat the church has a scriptural mandate to reach all people.


Hot on the heels of Governor Bill Richardson's prideful plans (andinformative interview with IN Los Angeles), Senators Hillary Clinton andBarack Obama have released their respective statements on pride month.

Read the gay details, after the jump.

45-year old Senator Barack Obama - who once referred to gay marriage a"political ploy" designed to distract Americans from "future challenges" -reminds readers that we've got a long road until queers are completely equalto their fellow countrymen. In addition to proclaiming the importance ofhate crime legislation, the democratic presidential candidate contends thenecessity of civil union laws and the dismantlement of the discriminatory'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'.

From Senator Obama's campaign website:

Pride Month is a reminder that while we have come a long way since theStonewall riots in 1969, we still have a lot of work to do.


The Advocate

June 02, 2007
Philly council OK's end to Scouts lease if group doesn't accept gays

The city may require the Boy Scouts of America's Cradle of Liberty Councilto affirm that it will not discriminate against openly gay people, or elselose its rent-free headquarters.

The Philadelphia city council passed a resolution Thursday that citysolicitor Romulo Diaz Jr. said was a last step needed to end the Scouts'lease under a 1928 ordinance that leased the land to them in perpetuity.

Diaz and councilman Darrell Clarke, whose district includes the building,said they hoped the resolution would prompt the two sides to resolve thedispute so the Scouts could continue to use the building at a nominal rent.

Jeff Jubelirer, a spokesman for the Cradle of Liberty Council, said anydecision probably would involve the leadership of the Scouts' NationalCouncil, and he did not know how Scouts officials would react.

The Supreme Court ruled in 2000 that as a private group, the Scouts have aFirst Amendment right to bar gays from membership. The Cradle of LibertyCouncil adopted a nondiscrimination policy in 2003 but was ordered to revokeit by the National Council, which said local councils had no right todeviate from national rules that bar participation by anyone who is openlygay. (AP)


Is Thompson Person To Bring Together Divided GOP?
by The Associated Press
Posted: June 3, 2007 - 9:00 am ET

(Richmond, Virginia) In one breath, Fred Thompson insists he has not yetdecided whether to run for president. In the next, he sounds like a man onthe cusp of a full-fledged White House bid.

"I've never desired to hold the office, particularly. In fact, not at all,"the Republican told The Associated Press. "But, at this stage of things, Isometimes think that I do desire the opportunity to do some things that onlya president can do."

After flirting with a candidacy for months, the former Tennessee senator andactor known to millions as the tough prosecutor on NBC's "Law & Order" tookthe first formal step toward the race for the GOP nomination Friday inestablishing a preliminary campaign committee.

Yet, Thompson claimed in an interview Saturday night, just before giving aspeech to Virginia Republicans, that he still wasn't ready to commit to acampaign.

"We've not made a final decision on it. But obviously we're thinking prettyseriously about it," he said. "Everybody who has an opportunity to make evena small difference in the course of the direction of the country has got tolook at that very seriously."


Rosie Plans Book, But Says It Won't Be Vindictive
by The Associated Press
Posted: June 3, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(New York City) Rosie O'Donnell has had "an interesting year," she confidedSunday, and a lot of it will be in her new book, "Celebrity Detox," comingthis fall.

Speaking at a breakfast gathering at BookExpo America, the publishingindustry's annual national convention, O'Donnell said her long-delayedmemoir on fame will not be "vindictive" or "mean-spirited," but will offer acandid look at her very public life, including her brief, battling stint on"The View."

"It is, in fact, a drug," she said of fame, and spoke of seeing peers soradically, and scarily, transformed by celebrity that they looked likevictims of "crystal meth."

O'Donnell, looking healthy but tired on a Sunday morning, noted that herbook was supposed to come out a few years ago, but she decided it wasn'tready, not quite "cooked." Her time on "The View" convinced her she wasready to start baking again. She called the book "half blog," half"straight" writing.

Last month, O'Donnell ended an eight-month tenure on "The View" that liftedthe show's ratings and, perhaps, the blood pressure of show creator BarbaraWalters. O'Donnell feuded with Donald Trump and frequently had snippyexchanges with the more conservative Elisabeth Hasselbeck.


Gay Pride Approved By Jerusalem Cops
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: June 3, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Jerusalem) Jerusalem Police have given their final approval to gay pridecelebrations, planned for June 21, but also have warned that it might notinclude a parade.

Police officials met Sunday with members of Open House, Jerusalem's LGBTcommunity center that had applied to put on the festival.

Last month District Chief Cmdr. Ilan Franco gave tentative approval for agay parade in the city on June 21 adding that the final OK must come thedistrict commander based on "the intelligence information and/or evidence hemay have at hand, on any restrictions he sees fit to apply to the event,it's location, and arrangements." (story)

An ultra-Orthodox sect that staged a week of riots last year against gaypride celebrations in Jerusalem has warned that if a parade is permittedthis year it will again take to the streets.

Rabbi Oded Shmueli of the haredi sect warned the government last week not toapprove the march.


Dems Support Wide Range OF Gay Issues
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: June 3, 2007 - 8:30 pm ET

(Manchester, New Hampshire) All but one of the Democrats vying for theirparty's presidential nomination oppose same-sex marriage, but all sevensupport civil unions along with a series of other key issues important tothe LGBT community.

The candidates squared off Sunday night against one another at their secondtelevised debate of the campaign - this one in the leadoff primary state,New Hampshire.

Prior to the debate the Human Rights Campaign released the results of aquestionnaire on LGBT civil rights submitted to Hillary Rodham Clinton,Barack Obama, Chris Dodd, Joe Biden, John Edwards, Mike Gravel, BillRichardson and Dennis Kucinich.

All but Gravel responded to the survey. Kucinich was the only candidate tosupport same-sex marriage.

Each of the seven said they supported civil unions. They also said theysupported the recognition by the federal government of a state's sanctionsame-sex unions for the purposes of benefits and taxation at both the stateand federal levels. And they support extending federal benefits to same-sexcouples and their children.


HIV Ignorance Fueling Transmission Rate In Asia-Pacific
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: June 4, 2007 - 9:00 am ET

(Phnom Penh) More than 90 percent of the estimated 8.5 million people livingwith HIV/AIDS in the Asia-Pacific region know they have the virus the UnitedNations reported on Monday.

The stunning figure was released in a joint statement by the UNICEF, UNAIDSand the World Health Organization at the start of a three day AIDSconference in the Cambodian capital.

"With so few people aware of their status, efforts to prevent new infectionsand treat those who are positive are becoming more difficult," the statementsaid.

The three world organizations called on governments in the region toincrease AIDS education efforts and boost health care.

Shigeru Omi, the WHO director for the region called awareness of a person'sHIV status an issue of human rights.


The Detroit News

Deb Price

Colorado morphs from hate to great state

From hate state to great state? Colorado's transformation in the past fewweeks is nothing short of amazing.

When measured on the civil rights yardstick set by progressive states likeMassachusetts, Connecticut or California, the recent breakthroughs inColorado might seem modest. After all, when Democrat Bill Ritter signed intolaw a ban on job discrimination against those of us who're gay ortransgender and signed a bill giving gay partners the right to be legalco-parents, his governor's pen was hardly going where no governor's pen hadgone before.

Ritter's signatures made Colorado the 20th state to outlaw anti-gay jobdiscrimination, the 12th to include anti-transgender job bias and amongabout two dozen states that extend legal protections to children luckyenough to have two loving parents, regardless of their parents' orientation.(Sadly, Michigan has no statewide job or second-parent protections.)

But Colorado is no ordinary state, and victories there carry specialsymbolic significance.

In 1992, voters in Colorado, which had become headquarters for a number ofanti-gay organizations, passed the infamous Amendment 2: It created twoclasses of citizens -- gays and everybody else -- by prohibiting all stateand local officials from doing anything to protect gay people fromdiscrimination.

The sweeping, first-of-its-kind state constitutional amendment got Coloradodubbed the "hate state" and cost it $40 million in lost convention businessand tourism. Ultimately, in 1996, the U.S. Supreme Court thundered thatColorado could not make its gay citizens "a stranger to its laws," and forthe first time acknowledged that gay Americans do indeed have rights underthe U.S. Constitution.

Election makes difference

Fast forward a decade: "What a difference an election makes," quips PatSteadman, a lobbyist for Equal Rights Colorado, when asked about thebuilding blocks for this year's towering breakthroughs. "We have a newgovernor, and it is a new day in Colorado."

Ritter was swept into office with 57 percent of the vote, replacingterm-limited Republican Gov. Bill Owens.

The Democratic-controlled state Legislature had passed the jobs bill twicebefore, and Owens vetoed it each time. The co-parenting measure passed forthe first time this year.


Ft. Lauderdale

United and Proud Exhibit Opens Wednesday Night

Art Community Celebrates Gay Pride Month

The local art community will celebrate Gay and
Lesbian Pride Month with a group art
exhibition entitled United and Proud at Gallery Six in the
Main Broward County Library, 100
South Andrews Avenue in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, from June
4 through 30, 2007. The show is
being produced by the nonprofit gay and lesbian arts
organization ArtsUnited, Inc. United and
Proud opens with a reception to meet the artists on
Wednesday June 6th from 6:00 to 8:30 PM
at the gallery. Refreshments will be served, and admission
is free and open to the public.

United and Proud is an ArtsUnited members only
exhibit designed to showcase artists
from the gay and lesbian community. Over 50 artists have
almost 150 original works of art in the
exhibit. 2007 is the seventh year the local group has
produced this annual mixed media exhibit.

Prizes will be awarded at the reception for Best of Show,
Best of each Class and people's Choice. Guest judges from the Broward County Cultural
Division will make all the selections except People's Choice, which will be chosen by the
audience at the opening.

This exhibition and reception are made possible
through the generous support of Pride South Florida, Broward County Libraries Division, 411, The
Express, Stork's Bakery, New Moon Bar and The Melting Pot Restaurant.


Michael Emanuel Rajner

National Secretary - Campaign to End AIDS

Telephone: (305) 677-3506 or (954) 272-8131

Compassion without Action = Death

Dear Ryan White Part A Subgrantees and Community:

The Ryan White Part A Program Office is sponsoring an HIV/AIDS Legal Forumin cooperation with Legal Aid Service of Broward, Inc. The forum will beheld at the Anne Kolb Nature Center at 751 Sheridan Street in Hollywood,Florida 33019 on Thursday, June 14, 2007 from 9:00 AM - 1:30 PM and willinclude a generously donated lunch from Gilead Sciences.

The forum is designed to provide medical case managers, social workers,medical providers, administrators and community members with practical andrelevant legal knowledge as it pertains to issues for clients living withHIV and AIDS. The primary goal of the Forum is to provide ourclient-contact infrastructure with a basic update regarding HIV related lawas factors impact care and other social service needs. It is also expectedthat both the Ryan White Part A Program Office and Legal Aid Service ofBroward, Inc will gain valuable insight from the participants including bothPart A Subgrantees and community members regarding the challenges clientsface and the relevant opportunities to best advocate for their needs.

Contact for the full article


Ft. Lauderdale

ArtsUnited Hosts Opening Reception at Stonewall MONDAY NIGHT

ArtsUnited Features Photographer Greg Lindeblom in Exhibition

ArtsUnited will feature the photography of localartist Greg Lindeblom in a solo exhibit at the Stonewall Library and Archives, 1717North Andrews Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, from June 4 through 30, 2007. The exhibitopens with a reception to meet artist on June 4 from 6:30 to 8:00 PM. Refreshments will be served. Admission is free and open to the public.

Born in Winnipeg, Canada, Greg Lindeblom has
traveled extensively, allowing him to capture images from many cultures and geographies. His art work has three primary themes - architecture, nature, and the maleform.

An Economics Professor by day, Greg has selected
diverse images, including some studio shots, together with locations as diverse as
the hills of Tuscany, a ruined mission in Austin, and his own backyard in Fort

This exhibit is made possible by a grant from
Comcast. For more information about ArtsUnited, go online to



Urge Your House Members to Talk with Appropriations Chairman Obey Regardingthe Need for Full ADAP Funding

On June 7, the House Labor, HHS, Education and Related AgenciesAppropriations Subcommittee will be setting the AIDS Drug Assistance Program(ADAP) funding for FY2008. The Congressman writing the bill isAppropriations Chairman David Obey (D-WI). The date for Senate Subcommitteeaction is likely late June or mid-July. It is important that this number beas high as possible, as it is difficult to increase the number in the fullAppropriations Committee or on either the House or Senate floor. ADAPs needan increase of $232.9 million to ensure that all ADAPs around the countryare able to provide a basic level of service to everyone who needs it. InFY2007, for the first time in the program's history, ADAPs received nofederal increase. Years of insufficient funding have created a crisis inthe program, with many states having to restrict access to treatment throughwaiting lists and other measures.

Please continue to help us fight for increased ADAP funding by contactingyour elected Representative and Senators and ask them to talk with ChairmanObey regarding the tremendous need for increased ADAP funding. Please takea few minutes to make these important phone calls!

How You Can Help:

contact for the full article


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Why every girl needs a gay best friend

Joanna Walters in New York
Sunday June 3, 2007

The Observer

Diamonds may be forever, but it turns out that a gay boy is actually agirl's best friend, according to a new book that is the first definitiveguide to the 'fag hag'.

That many straight women set great store by gay male friends won'tsurprise fans who've watched Will and Grace sharing the secrets of theirsouls, or Sex and the City's Carrie and her screaming-queen buddy Stanfordor Madonna and Rupert Everett, on- and off-screen.

Now a new book chronicles the (mostly) ups and (occasional) downs ofhaving a gay man as a girl's best friend. Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys true tales of love, lust and friendship between straight women and gay menwas launched in New York last week with a rainbow of hysterical real lifestories and a few predictably melodramatic tear-jerkers. One of the book'seditors, Melissa De La Cruz, said she sought to puncture the high-campstereotype by telling how her gay male co-editor Tom Dolby was therock-solid shoulder who was most there for her out of all her friends whenshe suffered a miscarriage and she and her husband were heartbroken. 'Hewas a real man,' she said.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Move Over Love Won Out!

The Southern Baptists are starting a denominational ex-gay ministry . . .
Move over Love Won Out!

Strategist named for homosexual outreach

Posted on Jun 1, 2007 | by Dwayne Hastings

SOUTHLAKE, Texas (BP)--Bob Stith officially assumed the role of SouthernBaptists' National Strategist for Gender Issues June 1, leaving thepastorate of Carroll Baptist Church in Southlake, Texas.

It was Stith who, in 2001, introduced a motion at the Southern BaptistConvention annual meeting for the SBC to "establish a task force to inform,educate, and encourage our people to be proactive and redemptive in reachingout to those who struggle with unwanted same-sex attractions."

That task force now will serve as an advisory group to Stith, who isexpected to develop workshops and conferences for training local churchstaff as well as resources for pastors, churches, SBC seminary students andothers to aid in their outreach to the homosexual community.

LifeWay Christian Resources is providing start-up funding for the ministry,including Stith's position.

"When God first convicted me about this issue in 1994, my whole attitudetoward homosexuals was negative and condemning," Stith said. He readilyadmits he is a changed man -- with a passion to tell whomever will listenthat the church has a scriptural mandate to reach all people.

James T. Draper Jr., immediate past president of LifeWay, said it wasextremely important for the person selected to direct the ministry to have apastoral background.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Michigan's ban on late-term abortion unconstitutional, federal appeals courtrules
June 4, 2007




LANSING - A Michigan law enacted by petition drive in 2004 to ban somelate-term abortions was declared unconstitutional today by the 6th U.S.Circuit Court of Appeals.

Although intended to prohibit the procedure commonly called partial-birthabortion by abortion foes, the Michigan law is more sweeping than apartial-birth abortion ban passed by Congress and upheld in April by theU.S. Supreme Court, the appeals court ruled.

The appeals court found that Michigan's Legal Birth Definition Act couldapply to abortions using other methods earlier in pregnancy and places an"undue burden" on a woman's right to choose abortion. The appeals panelaffirmed a Detroit district judge's opinion.

The three-judge panel said the Michigan Legislature would have been"virtually guaranteed" a favorable result on appeal, had it copied an Ohiolaw that the 6th Circuit has upheld.

"It instead opted to use statutory language that pushed almost everyboundary that the Supreme Court has imposed for these types of laws," thejudges said.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Maths genius killed by gay-hate gang
By JOHN KIDMAN - SMH | Monday, 4 June 2007

When the naked and crumpled body of US maths genius Scott Johnson was found
off Sydney's North Head, police dismissed his death as suicide.

Nearly 20 years later, his family has launched its own investigation intothe possibility the PhD student was the victim of a cliff-top killertargeting gay men, or even a gay-hate gang.

The extraordinary theory is based on similarities between Johnson's deathand the murders of up to six men, including WIN television newsreader RossWarren, in Sydney's eastern suburbs between 1987 and 1990.

In 2004 Coroner Jacqueline Milledge ruled that violent gangs preying onhomosexuals probably hurled three of the group to their deaths at MarksPark, overlooking Bondi Beach. She also determined that gay bashings in thepark were common and that similar attacks might have occurred at gay beatsat Alexandria and Randwick.

Spurred by the findings, Johnson's brother Steve has hired US investigativejournalist Daniel Glick and retired NSW detective John McNamara to determineif the same scenario occurred on Sydney's northern beaches.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Messing With the Institution of Marriage
Whym Rhymer
June 4, 2007

This past week, New Hampshire joined the ranks of the very few states whoare beginning to return some rights back to the people by "recognizing"civil unions and granting some legal status to those who can qualify for thecivil union status.

This is a bitter-sweet story for those of us who believe that marriage is areligious/social institution -- an institution that governments (local,state or federal) have no business sanctioning. The 'sweet' part is the factthat now one-fifth of our 50 states either have or will soon have some lawson the books that grant either domestic partnership status or civil unionstatus to same-sex couples; that's a step in the right direction and itindicates that at least some American legislators are starting to understandthat government interference into the institution of marriage has gone farenough (far too far by some standards).


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Churches Under Seige
Exposing the Right's Attacks on Mainline Protestantism
By John Dorhauer

In February of the year 2000, in South St. Louis, Missouri, the 300-memberRedeemer Evangelical United Church of Christ got a new pastor. His name wasGeorge Dohm. Soon after he arrived, he told select members whom he calledhis "disciples" that within five years he'd be able to take the church outof the denomination, which he considered degenerate for failing to embracethe inerrancy of the Bible or to attack gays. We know of his vow to removeRedeemer Evangelical from the denomination because the church organisthappened to overhear his remarks.

In February 2003, Rev. Dohm resigned, but told his "disciples" that he wouldcome back if they completed the takeover of the church. We know this becausehe was then working part-time as the UCC's regional youth director, and,when confronted about it at his last regional staff meeting, he admittedhe'd made that promise.

Within five months, he was back preaching in the church as a guestsupporting an upcoming vote of the members about leaving the denomination.In that sermon, which a congregant taped, he told the story of a fatheroffering his children brownies cooked with a touch of dog poop as a way toteach them a lesson. The UCC, Dohm continued, is the dog crap cooked intoChristianity-a little bit wrecks the whole thing.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Monday, June 04, 2007
Sex ed landscape shifting in states
By Pauline Vu, Staff Writer

While eighth-graders in North Clackamus, Ore., are learning the correct wayto put on condoms, some of their counterparts in New Hanover, N.C., areusing books that say, "There is not a lot of proof that condoms really work.Would you trust your life to one?"

State and district officials are dealing with a variation of that question.With the April release of a congressionally authorized study showing thatkids who took abstinence-only classes were just as likely to have premaritalsex as those who weren't in the classes, states are asking: Should weentrust our students to abstinence-only programs?

For a rising number of states, the answer is no. While a majority stillrequires that abstinence be stressed in sex education, lately there has beena movement toward comprehensive education that teaches about contraceptionalong with abstinence. This shift has been bolstered by Democratic gains instatehouses and Congress.

The debate over sex education has been long-running and passionate. Thosewho favor abstinence-only classes say comprehensive programs send mixedmessages to teenagers. But advocates of comprehensive courses sayabstinence-only programs don't give teens the facts they need to makeinformed choices.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Mom's Genetics Could Produce Gay Sons
By Ker Than, LiveScience Staff Writer

posted: 24 February 2006 09:22 am ET

The arrangement of a mother's genes could affect the sexual orientation ofher son, according to a new study.

The finding, detailed in the February issue of the journal Human Genetics,adds fuel to the decade-long debate about whether so-called "gay genes"might exist.

The researchers examined a phenomenon called "X chromosome inactivation" in97 mothers of gay sons and 103 mothers whose sons were not gay.

X and Y

Chromosomes are large thread-like molecules that contain an organism'sgenetic instructions. Humans have 23 chromosome pairs. The X chromosome isone of two sex chromosomes in mammals; the other is the Y chromosome.Females have two X chromosomes and no Y's, while males have one X and one Y.


Pakistan's first 'outed' HIV patient turns social activist

Posted on Wednesday, April 25, 2007 (EST)

Thrown in jail, deported and ridiculed -- Nazir Masih's struggle as thefirst person in Pakistan to be publicly "outed" as HIV positive has led himon an often arduous journey from outcast to activist.

ISLAMABAD (AFP) - The 52-year-old Masih's struggles have been doublydifficult in this overwhelmingly Muslim nation of 160 million people becausehe is part of the tiny Christian religious minority.

He has overcome these problems to help Pakistan's "hidden" HIV/AIDSsufferers who get little help from the government -- officially only 4,000people here have the virus but UNAIDS says up to 80,000 are infected.

"When I was first diagnosed as HIV positive 17 years ago, I used to wish Iwas dead. I thought it would be better for me and my family than to suffer alife of stigma and ostracism," the diminutive Masih told AFP.

Masih was working as a helper for an Arab family in Abu Dhabi when amandatory HIV test for renewing visas came back positive.

"Having spent years away from my wife, I did have sex with another woman. Itwas a mistake but the scale of the punishment was too severe for the act,"he says when asked how he contracted HIV.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Activists consider gay marriage push for D.C. Gay
Some favor move while Dems control Congress; others fear backfire

Friday, June 01, 2007

Washington Mayor Adrian Fenty last month reaffirmed his campaign promise to sign a same-sex marriage bill if City Council approves it, saying he's "always stood in full support for full marriage rights" for gays.

But the mayor, speaking May 14 before the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club, said he remains aware that many in the gay community believe it would be ounterproductive to move ahead with a D.C. same-sex marriage bill until it became certain that Congress would not overturn it, or worse, pass a law banning same-sex unions in the city.

Under the city's limited home rule charter, Congress has final authority to overturn or pass any laws it deems appropriate for the District.

"I have not heard as much since the Congress changed hands about whether that now alters some of the people's views who weren't in favor of the Council and the mayor going forward," Fenty told members of the Stein Club, a gay partisan group. "So maybe it's time to start the dialogue again."


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Friday, June 01, 2007


Holsinger's Founding of A Church That Tries To 'Cure' Gay People Makes Him Unfit To Serve As Nation's Top Doctor

WASHINGTON - Truth Wins Out announced its strong and committed opposition today to President George W. Bush's nomination for U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. James W. Holsinger, after it was revealed that he started a church in Lexington, Kentucky that has a ministry to "cure" gay people.

"Holsinger is an ideologue whose medical views on gay and lesbian people resemble sorcery more than sound science," said Truth Wins Out's Executive Director Wayne Besen. "The last thing America needed was another deplorable nominee who isn't up to the job, but this is exactly what Bush delivered."

Holsinger's nomination will go before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, ducation, Labor, and Pensions, chaired by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) Presidential candidates Sens. Barack Obama (D-IL), Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Christopher Dodd (D-CT) sit on this committee.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Falwell and Savage Christians: A Legacy of Hate and Violence

By Margaret Kimberley, Black Agenda Report. Posted May 31, 2007.

Evangelist hit-man Jerry Falwell's career as a racist propagandist was excised from the record, following his death last week, and the media has ignored threats from his followers -- Christians who are willing to commit terrorist acts and die for their faith.

"The true Negro does not want integration. ... He realizes his potential is far better among his own race." -- Rev. Jerry Falwell

The late Rev. Jerry Falwell was one of the most powerful men in American religious and political life. He was also an avowed segregationist, contending that Africans were the cursed descendants of Ham, and worthy only of subservience to white people. He was an adamant opponent of civil rights egislation, calling the Civil Rights Act a "civil wrong."

His segregationist ardor became inconvenient when he sought a national audience. He removed many of his sermons from the 1950s and 1960s from his Liberty University archive. His lies paid off as the media made Falwell the Christian spokesman for all issues related to religion and politics. They soft-pedaled or even ignored his attacks on the civil rights movement. Yet Falwell's followers were under no misapprehension. They knew what their man wanted and followed in his foot steps.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

On May 30th, at its annual meeting, the directors of ExxonMobil will ignore the shareholder request to change its employment policy to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.

They promise they are doing the right thing without any added rules.

They also have promised for years that global warming is the machination of crazy scientists out of touch with reality. They have lobbied hard -- and successfully -- against the U.S. signing the Kyoto Protocol. Rules. Why have rules when there is 40 billion dollars of profit to be had?

This February, The New York Times reported CEO Rex Tillerson, "warned Tuesday that governments should not rush into policies that could damage the global economy in order to limit carbon emissions."


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Psychologists to revisit gay topics Gay
Task force will weigh ex-gay conversion therapy

Friday, June 01, 2007

Ten years after it issued a landmark statement on gay patient therapy, the American Psychological Association will revisit the topic.

The organization announced last week it had formed a task force to review current scientific research and stances on "conversion therapy," or treatment that purports to make gays straight.

Dr. Clinton Anderson, director of the APA's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender concerns office, said the topic remains a contentious one.

"The issue continues to be one of considerable controversy and there's a lot of public and media attention to it," he said. "For those reasons, we decided it would make sense to take a look at that new literature and new policies and see if the APA should revise its own policy."

When the APA last considered the issue in 1997, it said that gay youth and adults should not be labeled mentally ill solely "due to their sexual orientation."


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