Monday, July 23, 2007

GLBT DIGEST July 22, 2007

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The Miami Herald

Posted on Sun, Jul. 22, 2007
No room for homophobia at City Hall

He was a neighbor. He was a doctor living on my street in Fort Lauderdalewith a medical practice in another city. He paid less heed to local politicsthan I did to NASCAR. He was gay.

An election was coming up. He asked me what I thought of the mayor. When thedoctor complained to City Hall, Jim Naugle had gotten back to him in aflash. The doctor was impressed.

We were standing on a quaint street in a 70-year-old subdivision carved outof an ancient live oak hammock. Naugle, I said, had done what he could tokeep developers from devouring neighborhoods like ours. He was a mayor who'dget back to you in a flash.

Then I added, ``If I was gay, I'd have a hard time voting for him.''

I didn't mention -- progressive guy that I was -- who I had voted for thelast time Jim Naugle was on the ballot.

The mayor had gotten my vote, despite his occasional untoward remarks aboutgays and his allegiance to an intolerant strain of fundamental Christianity.Despite the way he uttered cutting remarks with such relish.


Truth was, I've voted for worse. I've voted for candidates who could hardlymake it through a conversation without a racist aside. Voted for knownliars. Idiots. Crooks. And I knew it, even as I pushed the levers next totheir names.

My first votes were cast in a Mississippi Delta county in the 1960s whereballots often featured dismal choices between the merely bad and the trulyrepugnant.

I've voted for lousy redneck candidates because I figured they wouldn'tsteal as much as their equally repulsive opponents. And I've voted for someblack charlatans in those early days of civil rights, fellows who I wouldn'ttrust with $5 of my own money, with the vague hope my symbolic voteswouldn't get them elected. Some were. And they made out like bandits.

Democracy can get downright perplexing in rural places where the best andbrightest scatter the day after high school graduation. Too often, the hopewasn't that the best man won, but that the worst didn't. When I lived insouthern West Virginia, in a county controlled by the local politicalmachine -- right down to the vote-buying -- voters often weren't offeredeven that meager choice on election day.


But Fort Lauderdale has cultural diversity and robust politics andprogressive, educated voters and a tolerance that belies the notoriousremarks of its longtime mayor. It was Lauderdale voters last year who oustedan incumbent county commissioner and replaced him with an openly gaycandidate.

Yet a mayor like Naugle could win elections in Fort Lauderdale by talkingwith real nostalgia about protecting the city's endangered charms.

By working hard to fend off the worst developments. But, as a former vicemayor and his one-time friend Dean Trantalis told me, Naugle takes''devilish delight'' in generating controversy and fashioning himself as afolk hero to the reactionary set. He'd protect our interest, then make uscringe.

And he has done it again, popping off with crude anti-gay characterizations,bringing demonstrators to City Hall last week and creating nationalnotoriety for a city whose residents, most of us, had imagined we wereliving in a modern, cosmopolitan place rather than some homophobicbackwater.

Two more years and the mayor's out. Thank goodness for term limits. Seeinghis name on the ballot, once again, would be like reliving a bad memory froma backward place.


Televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker Messner
By Adam Bernstein
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, July 22, 2007; C08

Tammy Faye Bakker Messner, 65, a singer whose flamboyant style was anessential part of the evangelical television programs she co-hosted with herthen-husband, disgraced televangelist Jim Bakker, died Friday at her homenear Kansas City, Mo., a spokesman said last night. She had colon cancerthat spread to her lungs.

A taped interview with Mrs. Messner had appeared on "Larry King Live"Thursday night on the CNN network. The ravages of her cancer were clearly
visible and she was said to weigh only about 65 pounds.

Joe Spotts, her longtime manager, told The Washington Post last night thatshe had been cremated and buried in a "remote location."

He said she wanted to do the interview "because she knew the end was nearand wanted to talk to the people and be with the people one more time." She"held on just for that," he said.

In the interview, she told King that "I talk to God every day. And I say,'God, my life is in your hands and I trust you with me.' "


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
Tammy Faye Messner Dies at 65
Filed at 5:39 a.m. ET

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- Tammy Faye Messner, who as Tammy Faye Bakker helpedher husband, Jim, build a multimillion-dollar evangelism empire and thenwatched it collapse in disgrace, has died. She was 65.

Messner had battled colon cancer since 1996 that more recently spread to herlungs. She died peacefully Friday at her home near Kansas City, Mo., saidJoe Spotts, her manager and booking agent.

A family service was held Saturday in a private cemetery, where her asheswere interred, he said.

She had frequently spoken about her medical problems, saying she hoped to bean inspiration to others. ''Don't let fear rule your life,'' she said.''Live one day at a time, and never be afraid.'' But she told well-wishersin a note on her Web site in May that the doctors had stopped trying totreat the cancer.

In an interview with CNN's Larry King two months later, an emaciatedMessner -- still using her trademark makeup -- said, ''I believe when Ileave this earth, because I love the Lord, I'm going straight to heaven.''Asked if she had any regrets, Messner said: ''I don't think about it, Larry,because it's a waste of good brain space.''


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
Campaign Chic: Not Too Cool, Never Ever Hot

WHEN Senator John McCain's campaign went into a midflight stall last week,it was not only the candidate's hard-line stance on Iraq or problems withhis party's conservative wing that enthralled the thumb-tapping hordes ofthe blogosphere. It was leaks from inside the campaign alleging that Mr.McCain thought his handlers were dressing him up as a metrosexual.

Political blogs like the Stump and the Swamp, and gossipier ones like Radar,had a field day with Mr. McCain's so-called "gay sweater," a V-neck wornover a T-shirt. Fashion insiders, for their part, shrugged off the look asmore appropriate to the buffet line at an assisted living center than thepages of Out.

But Mr. McCain's so-called gay sweater brought up a perennial politicalbugbear. How much attention should politicians pay to their clothes?

"There's too much emphasis and scrutiny on this," said Bill Carrick, aDemocratic political strategist who managed Richard A. Gephardt's 1988campaign and was a consultant for the candidate in 2004. "There's a fineline," Mr. Carrick added, between candidates staying on top of the messagetheir clothes project and their "turning this all into some sort ofHollywood, television, Garry Trudeau, Bob Forehead kind of thing."

There is a fine line, that is, between ignoring Dale Carnegie-era notions ofdressing for success (a particularly weird concept in an age of iMoguls incargo shorts), and the truth instinctively acknowledged by canny publicfigures and generations of Miss Popularity: people judge us by our clothes.


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
Cover Story
How Can You Distinguish a Budding Pedophile From a Kid With Real BoundaryProblems?


In the early 1980s, a therapist named Robert Longo was treating adolescentboys who had committed sex offenses. Their offenses ranged from fondlinggirls a few years younger than they were to outright rape of young children.As part of their treatment, the boys had to keep journals - which Longoread - in which they detailed their sexual fantasies and logged howfrequently they masturbated to those fantasies. They created"relapse-prevention plans," based on the idea that sex-offending is like anaddiction and that teenagers need to be watchful of any "triggers"(pornography, anger) that might initiate their "cycle" of reoffending. Andat the beginning of each group session, the boys introduced themselves muchas an alcoholic begins an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting: "I'm Brian, and I'ma sex offender. I sexually offended against a 10-year-old boy; I made himlick my penis three times."

Sex-offender therapy for juveniles was a new field in the 1980s, and Longo,like other therapists, was basing his practices on what he knew: the adultsex-offender-treatment models. "It's where the literature was," Longo, afounder of the international Association for the Treatment of SexualAbusers, told me not long ago. "It's what we'd been doing."

As it turns out, he went on to say, "much of it was wrong." There is noproof that what Longo calls the "trickle-down phenomenon" of using adultsex-offender treatments on juveniles is effective. Adult models, he notes,don't account for adolescent development and how family and environmentaffect children's behavior. Also, research over the past decade has shownthat juveniles who commit sex offenses are in several ways very differentfrom adult sex offenders. As one expert put it, "Kids are not short adults."

That's not to say that juvenile sexual offenses aren't a serious problem.Juveniles account for about one-quarter of the sex offenses in the U.S.Though forcible rapes, the most serious of juvenile sex offenses, havedeclined since 1997, court cases for other juvenile sex offenses have risen.David Finkelhor, the director of Crimes Against Children Research Center atthe University of New Hampshire, and others argue, however, that thosestatistics largely reflect increased reporting of juvenile sex offenses andadjudications of less serious offenses. "We are paying attention toinappropriate sexual behavior that juveniles have engaged in forgenerations," he said.


The New York Times

July 22, 2007

The Antiwar, Anti-Abortion, Anti-Drug-Enforcement
-Administration, Anti-Medicare Candidacy of Dr. Ron Paul

Whipping westward across Manhattan in a limousine sent by Comedy Central's"Daily Show," Ron Paul, the 10-term Texas congressman and long-shotRepublican presidential candidate, is being briefed. Paul has only the mosttenuous familiarity with Comedy Central. He has never heard of "The DailyShow." His press secretary, Jesse Benton, is trying to explain who its host,Jon Stewart, is. "He's an affable gentleman," Benton says, "and he's verysmart. What I'm getting from the pre-interview is, he's sympathetic."

Paul nods.

"GQ wants to profile you on Thursday," Benton continues. "I think it's worthdoing."

"GTU?" the candidate replies.

"GQ. It's a men's magazine."


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
Orthodox Paradox

A number of years ago, I went to my 10th high-school reunion, in thebackyard of the one classmate whose parents had a pool. Lots of myclassmates were there. Almost all were married, and many already had kids.This was not as unusual as it might seem, since I went to a yeshiva dayschool, and nearly everyone remained Orthodox. I brought my girlfriend. Atthe end, we all crowded into a big group photo, shot by the schoolphotographer, who had taken our pictures from first grade throughgraduation. When the alumni newsletter came around a few months later, Ihappened to notice the photo. I looked, then looked again. My girlfriend andI were nowhere to be found.

I didn't want to seem paranoid, especially in front of my girlfriend, towhom I was by that time engaged. So I called my oldest school friend, whoappeared in the photo, and asked for her explanation. "You're kidding,right?" she said. My fiancée was Korean-American. Her presence implied theprospect of something that from the standpoint of Orthodox Jewish law couldnot be recognized: marriage to someone who was not Jewish. That hint wasreason enough to keep us out.

Not long after, I bumped into the photographer, in synagogue, on Yom Kippur.When I walked over to him, his pained expression told me what I alreadyknew. "It wasn't me," he said. I believed him.

Since then I have occasionally been in contact with the school's alumnidirector, who has known me since I was a child. I say "in contact," but thatimplies mutuality where none exists. What I really mean is that in the nineyears since the reunion I have sent him several updates about my life, forinclusion in the "Mazal Tov" section of the newsletter. I sent him news ofmy marriage. When our son was born, I asked him to report that happy event.The most recent news was the birth of our daughter this winter. Nothingdoing. None of my reports made it into print.

It would be more dramatic if I had been excommunicated like Baruch Spinoza,in a ceremony complete with black candles and a ban on all social contact, arite whose solemnity reflected the seriousness of its consequences. But inthe modern world, the formal communal ban is an anachronism. Many of myclosest relationships are still with people who remain in the Orthodox fold.As best I know, no one, not even the rabbis at my old school who disapproveof my most important life decisions, would go so far as to refuse to shakemy hand. What remains of the old technique of excommunication is simplynonrecognition in the school's formal publications, where my classmates'growing families and considerable accomplishments are joyfully celebrated.


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
West Village
A Plea Rarely Heard: Fewer Spots for Cars

It might seem unimaginable that anyone in the city would long for fewerparking spaces. But that is exactly what residents of the West Village haveon their wish list.

At a meeting Thursday night, Community Board 2 approved a proposal toprohibit parking from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., Thursday through Sunday, along theblock of Christopher Street between Hudson and Greenwich Streets.

Only about 10 parking spaces would be lost. But the proposal, in fact, haslittle to do with parking, and is the latest development in the continuingfriction between some Village residents and young people, many of them gayand from outside the neighborhood, who see the area as a welcoming haven andcongregate on the street and nearby piers.

The hope is that removing the spaces will help curtail the drug dealing andprostitution that supporters of the proposal say often take place behindparked cars during the night.

"The cars kind of conceal whatever people might be up to on the block," saidIan Dutton, vice chairman of the community board's Transportation Committee.


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
Journeys | Provincetown, Mass.
For Gay Parents, a Big Week in the Sun

IN 1996, Tim Fisher and Scott Davenport, a couple living in New Jersey,brought their daughter, Kati, and son, Fritz, to Provincetown for avacation. After a week of meeting other gay and lesbian parents at thebeach, they invited about 15 families to their rented house for dinner. Itwas a magical event, Mr. Davenport recalled, at which children of gayparents - many of whom didn't know other families like theirs - suddenlyfelt less alone.

Over the next decade, the event - which came to be known as Family Week -grew so large that by last summer a family parade seemed to stretch from oneend of Provincetown to the other. Among those working as volunteers wereKati and Fritz, now teenagers. They had become used to Family Week's low-keystyle; the annual highlights included a fish fry at the Provincetown Inn.

This year, Family Week has bigger fish to fry. R Family Vacations, a companyfounded, in part, by Rosie O'Donnell, has taken over the running of FamilyWeek from the nonprofit Family Pride Coalition. And that means that thewhole event is being redesigned with more razzle-dazzle. "Rosie's idea isthat if we're going to do it, we have to be the biggest and the best," saidGregg Kaminsky, one of the three principals of R Family, along with Ms.O'Donnell and her partner, Kelli O'Donnell. The fish fry, for example, hasbeen replaced by a circus-themed party, Mr. Kaminsky said. His tasks includefinding accommodations for the performers who will be on hand to provideBroadway-style entertainment.

In a culture clash - between less and more - more seems to be winning. Mr.Kaminsky said that R Family had not yet made a profit, and he acknowledgedthat Family Week would not help that. "We'll be lucky to break even," hesaid, adding, "Rosie is very generous."

Ironically, R Family had its genesis at Family Week. In 2002, the O'Donnellsattended the event with their three children. (They have since had afourth.) The oldest, Parker, then 7, was amazed to see so many othersame-sex couples with kids, said Mr. Kaminsky, a family friend. "He keptpointing and saying, 'Two mommies. Two mommies.' " Within a year, theO'Donnells and Mr. Kaminsky, a veteran travel executive, had decided to tryto offer other children the same opportunity. Their first trip was aCaribbean cruise in 2004. Since then, R Family has offered half a dozentrips.


The Washington Post

Muscling a Web Site Into a Social Movement
Va. Blogger Taps Into Illegal-Immigration Ire

By Nick Miroff
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, July 22, 2007; A01

Illegal immigrant ice cream vendors might be spreading leprosy in Manassas.Prince William County has been infiltrated by "unassimilated marxistradicals." Manassas Park police covered up the predations of five Hispanicmen who gang-raped a woman in the street in June.

These claims, among others, have been made in recent months by Greg Letiecq,whose popular blog, Black Velvet Bruce Li, offers "Blog-Fu for PrinceWilliam, Manassas and Manassas Park politics" -- often making up in passionwhat it lacks in proof.

But Letiecq (pronounced LUH-teek) is not some mouse-pushing crackpot with akeyboard and an Internet connection. In the past 18 months, Letiecq hasleveraged his blog to help elect allies, kill off opponents' campaigns andshape local public policy. Peers call his site the most influential localblog in Virginia.

Since April, Letiecq has used his blog to sign up more than 500 members forhis anti-illegal immigrant organization, Help Save Manassas, quicklybuilding it into one of the region's most effective social movements. He andhis group researched, facilitated and wrote parts of the illegal-immigrationresolution that Prince William officials adopted this month, working withthe Washington-based Immigration Reform Law Institute.

The resolution -- approved unanimously July 10 -- seeks to deny services toillegal immigrants and sharply increase immigration enforcement by police.Its sponsor, John T. Stirrup Jr. (R-Gainesville), is Letiecq's districtrepresentative and also a member of Help Save Manassas.


Activist Diane Cline is a constant in Wilton Manors, a city in transition
By Elizabeth Baier
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
July 22, 2007

Wilton Manors Diane Cline can't seem to stop herself.

She buzzes around town, on a quest for things. Historical things. Politicalthings. Funny things.

Like last month, when she found an original glass doorknob inside thehistoric cottage house on the Richardson Historic Park and Nature Preserve.The signature, white manor house at the south entrance of Wilton Manors wasbuilt in 1952, and along with the cottage, is being renovated to become thecity's Historical Society headquarters.

Or in 2003, when she called Publix's corporate office in Lakeland demandingthat company officials change the sign in front of the supermarket and itsphone book listing from "Publix Five Corners" to "Publix Five Points." She'sbeen nagging them recently, after learning the supermarket's phone recordingstill "has it wrong."

"I'm just nosy," Cline said last week, "and I won't give up a fight."


Feds shut down HMO's plans for seniors
By Bob LaMendola
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
July 21, 2007

Federal officials Friday terminated Medicare health insurance plans run byAmerica's Health Choice in Florida because of delays and denials of medicalcare, the first termination ever made for poor health coverage.

The Vero Beach company has about 12,000 members in seven Florida counties,including 3,600 in Broward and Palm Beach counties, said Abby Block,director of Medicare's Center for Beneficiary Choice. All members wereswitched automatically into another health plan, Secure Horizons.

AHC's flaws "pose an imminent and serious threat to the health" of members,Block said. "This is the first time we have terminated a plan based onpatient care issues."

Block said Medicare began investigating in January after complaints frommembers about delays in treatments being authorized, medication errors, lackof access to specialists and substandard medical care at company clinics.

Medicare heard more details from employees and made a surprise inspection afew weeks ago that led to the termination, she said.


New Iraqi Gay Slays Bared

Ali Hili, the 33-year-old gay Iraqi exile who founded Iraqi LGBT three yearsago in London, has confirmed a number of murders of gay men in his homecountry that have taken place this month.

A new wave of assassinations of Iraqi gays - part of the organized campaignof "sexual cleansing" of homosexuals that has been one of the saddestbyproducts of the Anglo-American invasion and occupation of Iraq - has beenconfirmed by Iraqi LGBT, the all-volunteer, London-based group of gay Iraqiexiles that has been documenting the grim work of the Islamist anti-gaydeath squads in Iraq.

Ali Hili is the 33-year-old gay Iraqi exile who founded Iraqi LGBT threeyears ago in London with 30 other gay Iraqis, and is now the group'scoordinator. Iraqi LGBT has members, supporters, and informants throughoutIraq, with whose help the group has been able to document and confirm abloody harvest of assassinations by fanatically anti-gay Islamist enforcers.

Hili told Gay City News this week of the following new confirmed murders andarrests of gay Iraqis, all of which occurred at the beginning of this month.Pseudonyms have been used for those still living to protect their safety.)

Mustafa, 26, was a well-known gay man in his neighborhood in the city ofNajaf, south of Baghdad, who went out for a walk with a friend to shop forclothes. Mustafa was stopped and arrested by the local militia of the BadrCorps - the armed branch of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolutionin Iraq (SCIRI), which is the largest Shia political formation in Iraq.

The Badr Corps was integrated into the Ministry of the Interior's policelast year, and its anti-gay death squads since then have operated with fullpolice powers.


Judge Blasts GOP Lawmaker In Anti-Gay Petition Fraud Case
by Newscenter Staff

Posted: July 21 2007 - 4:00 pm ET

(Cincinnati, Ohio) A Republican lawmaker behind an unsuccessful bid torepeal Cincinnati's ordinance protecting gays from discrimination has beenaccused of knowing names to get the issue onto the ballot in 2006 werefraudulent.

Two women working on behalf of Equal Rights Not Special Rights have pleadedguilty to election falsification.

State Rep. Tom Brinkman, who was the head of the organization was nevercharged, but at a hearing the judge in the case suggested he was involvedand knew that Lois Mingo, 48, and Precilla Ward, 32, had falsified thepetitions by crossing out names and addresses of signers and replacing themwith addresses of registered voters in order to make them appear valid.

"It's terrible," said Judge Robert Ruehlman from the bench. "It takes awaythe right to democracy. It takes away the right for people to decide issueswhen you cheat like that."

Like Brinkman, Judge Ruehlman is a Republican.


Express Gay News

Naugle, Stonewall Library chief spar on CNN
Broward County Library has 'sex manuals' in its collection, official says
Jul. 20, 2007

The feud between Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle and gay residents wentnational late last week, as the mayor sparred with a Stonewall Libraryofficial on a segment of CNN's Headline Prime show that aired between 6 and7 p.m. on Friday, June 13.

On the segment, Naugle claimed the library's collection contains"pornographic magazines of the worst kind." He also said one reason heobjected to the library's recently approved move to the ArtServe building onSunrise Boulevard is because the new location is near "little league fields."

Library officials have said that there is no pornographic material in thelibrary's circulating collection and just some adult magazines in thearchives, which are not available to the public. Patrons must be 18 to enterthe library.

Earlier last week, Naugle voted against Stonewall Library's request to moveinto the ArtServe building, which the county leases from the city of FortLauderdale. The building, which is across the street from Holiday Park, alsohouses a small satellite branch of the county library.

The city commission voted 3-2 to approve the move over Naugle's objections.At the commission meeting, Naugle complained that Stonewall's collectioncontained pornography.

The CNN segment ran with a program banner on the screen that read, "Gaylibrary uproar: Hardcore porn on the reading list?"

At the beginning of the segment, the CNN anchor asked Stonewall ExecutiveDirector Jack Rutland, "What is a gay library?"

Rutland explained that the library's collection includes famous authors suchas Walt Whitman, Gore Vidal and Tennessee Williams as well as manycontemporary gay authors. He said part of the library's mission is topreserve gay history "because mainstream history doesn't often report ourhistory." Rutland went on to say that the library's collection "includesinformation on the AIDS crisis." He said the collection is restricted tothose 18 and over because it deals with mature subject matter and sexuality.

Asked if he had been to the library, Naugle replied, "No." But he said hehad obtained a list of materials in the collection. He said the archivespart of the collection contained "extreme hard-core porn." Naugle said thecollection belonged in a privately owned building, not one owned by thecity. He then raised concerns that the library's new location is "in ourmain park in the city, where our little league fields are."

Naugle suggested that allowing a gay library collection to share a buildingwith a county library collection could set a dangerous precedent.

"If the library in Broward County ends up having hard-core porn, it canhappen in any library in America," Naugle said.

County library has sexually explicit material

But the mayor may be surprised to learn that there is already sexuallyexplicit material in Broward County's main public library in FortLauderdale.

"I'm sure the Broward County Main Library has something to offend everybody," said Bob Cannon, director of Broward County Libraries Division."There is sexually explicit material in both the fiction and nonfictionsections."

Cannon said that there are even illustrated sex manuals in the countylibrary's collection.

"We have books and materials that describe and show sex," he said.

He said the county library also has R-rated videos and DVDs. None of thematerial is age restricted except the R-rated videos.

"Our policy is that it's up to the parents to decide what they want theirchildren to have access to," Cannon said.

Toward the end of the CNN segment, Naugle said Stonewall's collection "issupported by the Sun-Sentinel and the Miami Herald."

"Locally, they're funding it," he said.

Rutland said the library did receive a $5,000 Sun-Sentinel United WayDiversity Grant, which was earmarked for a special history program. He saidthe Herald gave the library free advertising for its Holocaust exhibit twoyears ago and has sponsored some other events. But he said the newspapers'contributions, while appreciated, were a small part of the library's$185,000 per year budget.

Rutland was critical of a Sun-Sentinel online poll about the library thatran June 11. The poll asked readers, "Fort Lauderdale city commissionershave decided to provide space in a Holiday Park building for the StonewallLibrary, a gay and lesbian archive that includes sexually explicit material.Your opinion?" Thirty-three percent said they supported the decision, and 67percent were opposed.

Rutland said the poll was slanted and accepted Naugle's faulty premise thatthe library's collection was pornographic.

"We love Sun-Sentinel and appreciate their support, but that poll is likeasking a man if he still beats his wife," Rutland said.

Naugle's remarks at the commission meeting and his CNN interview followed aJuly 4 interview in the Sun-Sentinel in which he said he wanted a robotictoilet installed in the parking lot of Sebastian Beach to deter gay sex.Naugle said "homosexuals" were engaging in "illegal sex" and that "most ofthem aren't gay; they are unhappy."

A Fort Lauderdale police spokesperson said the city does not have a problemwith sex in public restrooms.

This week, the Sun-Sentinel ran an editorial that was sharply critical ofNaugle for his robotic toilet remarks and described him as "anembarrassment." The paper has also printed op-eds critical of Naugle. OnJuly 11, Sun-Sentinel ran a poll that asked readers for their opinion ofNaugle's robotic toilet idea. By a large majority, the respondents opposedthe idea.

At the June 10 commission meeting, Naugle mentioned "Arab Slave Boys" as anexample of one of the pornographic titles in the Stonewall collection. NateKlarfeld, president of Stonewall Library's board of directors, said "ArabSlave Boys" is a pulp fiction book with no pictures that was published inthe 1950s.

"It's in the archives because of its age and rarity," he said.


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
Op-Ed Columnist
I Did Have Sexual Relations With That Woman

IT'S not just the resurgence of Al Qaeda that is taking us back full circleto the fateful first summer of the Bush presidency. It's the hot sweatemanating from Washington. Once again the capital is titillated by a scandalfeaturing a member of Congress, a woman who is not his wife and a rumor ofcrime. Gary Condit, the former Democratic congressman from California, haspassed the torch of below-the-Beltway sleaziness to David Vitter, anincumbent (as of Friday) Republican senator from Louisiana.

Mr. Vitter briefly faced the press to explain his "very serious sin,"accompanied by a wife who might double for the former Mrs. Jim McGreevey. Hehad no choice once snoops hired by the avenging pornographer Larry Flyntunearthed his number in the voluminous phone records of the so-called D.C.Madam, now the subject of a still-young criminal investigation. Newspapersback home also linked the senator to a defunct New Orleans brothel, a chargeMr. Vitter denies. That brothel's former madam, while insisting he had beena client, was one of his few defenders last week. "Just because people visita whorehouse doesn't make them a bad person," she helpfully told the BatonRouge paper, The Advocate.

Mr. Vitter is not known for being so forgiving a soul when it comes toothers' transgressions. Even more than Mr. Condit, who once co-sponsored abill calling for the display of the Ten Commandments in public buildings,Mr. Vitter is a holier-than-thou family-values panderer. He recruited hispreteen children for speaking roles in his campaign ads and, terrorismnotwithstanding, declared that there is no "more important" issue facingAmerica than altering the Constitution to defend marriage.


The New York Times

July 22, 2007
Op-Ed Columnist
A Woman Who's Man Enough

Things are getting confusing out there in Genderville.

We have the ordinarily poker-faced secretary of defense crying over youngAmericans killed in Iraq.

We have The Washington Post reporting that Hillary Clinton came to the floorof the Senate in a top that put "cleavage on display Wednesday afternoon onC-SPAN2."

We have Mitt Romney spending $300 for makeup appointments at Hidden Beauty,a mobile men's grooming spa, before the California debate, even though NBCwould surely have powdered his nose for free.

We have Elizabeth Edwards on a tear of being more assertive than herhusband. She argued that John Edwards is a better advocate for women thanHillary, explaining that her own experience as a lawyer taught her that"sometimes you feel you have to behave as a man and not talk about women'sissues."

We have Bill Clinton, who says he'd want to be known as First Laddie,defending his woman by saying, "I don't think she's trying to be a man."

We have The Times reporting that Hillary's campaign is quizzical about whyso many women who are like Hillary - married, high income, professionaltypes - don't like her. A Times/CBS News poll shows that women view her morefavorably than men, but she has a problem with her own demographic and someolder women resistant to "a lady president" from the land of women's lib.

In a huge step forward for her, The Times said that "all of those polled -both women and men - said they thought Mrs. Clinton would be an effectivecommander in chief."

So gender isn't Hillary's biggest problem. Those who don't like her said itwas because they don't trust her, or don't like her values, or think she'stoo politically expedient or phony.


The Washington Post

Congress's Power To Compel

By Frank Askin
Saturday, July 21, 2007; A13

It seems that the House Judiciary Committee is considering seeking help fromthe Justice Department to enforce contempt citations against Bushadministration officials such as Joshua Bolten who refuse to respond tocongressional inquiries into alleged White House wrongdoing. That would be amistake.

Such a strategy leaves Congress beholden to hostile executive branchofficials to enforce its prerogatives on exactly the type of charges thatthe administration said this week it would not allow officials to pursue.This strategy also would allow the president to pardon his underlings shouldthey ever be indicted and convicted.

Yet under historic and undisturbed law, Congress can enforce its own ordersagainst recalcitrant witnesses without involving the executive branch andwithout leaving open the possibility of presidential pardon.

And a Supreme Court majority would find it hard to object in the face of twoentrenched legal principles.

First is the inherent power of Congress to require testimony on matterswithin its legislative oversight jurisdiction.

So long as Congress is investigating issues over which it has the power tolegislate, it can compel witnesses to appear and respond to questions. Thatpower has been affirmed over and over in prosecutions for contempt.


The Washington Post

Restraint? Sure. Oppression? Hardly.

By Leila Aboulela
Sunday, July 22, 2007; B03

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates

The West believes that Islam oppresses women. But as a Muslim, descended
from generations of Muslims, I have a different story to tell. It startslike this: You say, "The sea is salty." I say, "But it is blue and full offish." I am not objective about Islam, and although I am considerablyWesternized, I can never truly see it through Western eyes. I am in thisreligion. It is in me. And articulating the intimacy of faith and theexperience of worship to a Western audience is a challenge and a discovery.

My mother instilled a spiritual awareness in me from an early age. Mygrandmother told me stories from the Koran, and I grew up listening toadults discussing Islamic law. I don't remember when I learned that Allahexisted just as I don't remember when I learned my name.

My earliest contact with the West came when I was 7 and my parents enrolledmy younger brother and me in the Khartoum American School in Sudan. For thefirst time in my life I entered a library, selected a book and took it homewith me. It was the books I discovered then that made me fall in love withreading: "Little House on the Prairie," "A Wrinkle in Time," "Harriet theSpy" and "Little Women."

I read them again and again, and even though I knew that the characters werenot Muslim, I found Muslim values in those novels. I found spiritualjourneys, and familiar depictions of the rigor and patience needed todiscipline the ego. Yes, Islam restrains me, but restraint is notoppression, and boundaries can be comforting and nurturing. Freedom does notnecessarily bring happiness, nor does an abundance of choices automaticallymean that we will make the right one. I need guidance and wisdom; I needgrace and forgiveness.

I appreciate the West. I love its literature, its transparency and itsenergy. I admire its work ethic and its fairness. I need its technology andits medicine, and I want my children to have a Western education. At thesame time, I am fulfilled in my religion. Nothing can compete with theelegance, authority and details of the Koran.


The Miami Herald

Posted on Sun, Jul. 08, 2007

Sometimes, our suspicions are unfounded

My wife and I have a running joke.

Say the doctor informs me he's going to administer some test that will hurtlike heck. When he leaves the room, I whisper to Marilyn, ``You know whyhe's doing it, don't you? It's because

I'm black.''

It is, of course, a joke with a point. Namely, that some black folks canread race into anything. Some of us keep indignation in our hip pockets andconspiracy on speed dial.

But we'll get back to Isaiah Washington in a moment.

First, the obvious disclaimer: I am not saying race is never the reason badthings happen. Au contraire. One often gets pulled over because one isblack. One often gets substandard healthcare because one is black. One oftenfails to get the job because one is black.

Worse, because those in charge of pulling people over, giving healthcare ormaking hiring decisions are seldom clear and candid that race is theirreason, it's easy to become paranoid, to believe everything is race untilproven otherwise. So to be African American is often to walk a tightropeabove a snake pit of suspicions, both founded and un.

Apparently, Washington has fallen and he can't get up.


The Miami Herald

Posted on Sun, Jul. 22, 2007

GOP's big Florida donors sitting on sidelines

Two-thirds of the top Florida donors to President Bush have yet to write acheck to any Republican presidential candidate this year, reflecting anationwide disquiet in the GOP that threatens to undermine its hold on theWhite House.

Among Democrats, it's a different story. About three-fourths of the leadingfundraisers for the 2004 Democratic nominee, Sen. John Kerry, have put theirmoney on a 2008 contender. Some gave to more than one Democrat, according toa Miami Herald analysis of the latest campaign finance reports.

Their motivation contrasts with that of many leading Republicanfundraisers -- once dubbed ''Pioneers'' and ''Rangers'' for their success attrailblazing paths of green -- who now find themselves idling on thesidelines.

''We're six months before the Florida primary. I would think at least halfwould be signed up with one campaign or another,'' said Fort Lauderdalelobbyist Justin Sayfie, a top Bush donor turned fence-sitter.

One retired Jacksonville executive who has supported Republican president


The Olympian

Published July 21, 2007
Gay issues lose their sting; marriage next?

After three decades of controversy and contention, Washington has quietlyadopted back-to-back gay rights laws with little pushback from critics andno blowback from the voters.

Starting Monday, same-sex couples can sign a domestic partner registry thattriggers some of the key benefits of marriage. That follows on the heels ofa gay civil rights measure that gives gays and lesbians the full protectionof the state's anti-discrimination laws.

Neither law was challenged on the ballot, as both sides had originallypredicted. Independent pollster Stuart Elway says the once radioactive issueof gay rights has mostly fallen off the radar screen and was scarcelymentioned in the last election.

"We're a fairly libertarian state, live and let live, and it's clearly notvery high on the public agenda," he says, adding that only the prospect forfull marriage rights will light fuses.

The state's first openly gay legislator, Cal Anderson, and other lawmakersstruggled for nearly 30 years to get the civil rights bill through Olympialast year. Democrats padded their majorities in both houses and came rightback to pass marriage-like rights this year.

On Monday, Sen. Ed Murray, Anderson's successor in the Legislature and inleading the charge, and his 16-year partner, Michael Shiosaki, will line upat the secretary of state's counter in Olympia to register their domesticpartnership.


Gay rights foes confident they can force vote
Two new laws will be suspended until Oregon voters weigh in
SALEM, Ore. (AP) | Jul 20, 10:08 AM

It looks like two new gay rights laws that are supposed to take effect onJan. 1 will be suspended until Oregon voters have a chance to weigh in onthem in November 2008, according to the group that's opposing the newlegislation.

Gay rights advocates scored major victories in the Oregon Legislature thisspring when lawmakers approved laws to ban discrimination against gays inwork and housing, and to give same-sex couples most state benefits ofmarriage through legal domestic partnerships.

But a coalition of social conservative and church groups has been collectingpetition signatures in hopes of blocking the measures. If they can collect55,179 signatures by Sept. 26, the measures will be suspended until they canbe voted on in the November 2008 election.

A spokeswoman for the referral campaign, former state Sen. Marylin Shannon,wouldn't give out signature totals Thursday. But she said hundreds ofvolunteer petition carriers have been enjoying "awesome" success in theirefforts to block the laws from taking effect.

"We've got 15,000 petitions out there and we're printing more. I'm willingto predict that Oregonians will vote on this in 2008," the Brooks Republicansaid of the referral campaign by a group called Defense of Family andMarriage Again.

The executive director of the state's largest gay rights group, Basic RightsOregon, said it appears that opponents will be able to round up enoughsignatures to keep the two laws on hold until next year's general election.


The Express Gay News

By Kevin Naff

'Hairspray,' Scientology & me

"Hairspray" opens today and so it seems appropriate to weigh in on theevents of the past few months and close the book on a bizarre chapter.

The silly saga began with a blog post here on May 1 that I wrote after thefirst clips from "Hairspray" hit the web. In it, I expressed surprise thatJohn Travolta - a Scientologist - was reprising Divine's Edna Turnblad rolebecause of the gay rumors that have followed him for years and because ofScientology's views of homosexuality. That blog post concluded with theline, "Gay film fans ought to boycott this mess and go rent the original onJuly 20 instead."

The earth did not spin off its axis after that blog post; there was verylittle, if any, reaction and I forgot about it. Until June 12 - nearly sixweeks later - when MSNBC gossip columnist Jeannette Walls resurrected it,noting, "some gay leaders are calling for a boycott of the film."

"Some gay leaders"? And that's all it took for entertainment "journalists"and, of course, the breathless bloggers, to pounce. That one line from myblog was translated across the web as a boycott call from "activists," "gayleaders" and "power gays."

It appeared everywhere from the trashiest blogs (Queerty) to the New YorkTimes. Then, on June 14, the New York Daily News interviewed me about it andits Rush & Molloy column led with the headline, "Travolta in 'Spray' revoltsgays." The item again used plural nouns to describe the source of the
boycott call.

One day later, John Waters, a director I've admired since the mid-1980s andinterviewed a few times, responded in the Daily News, rightly pointing outthat I am just one guy. He also defended Travolta, asserting that he's nothomophobic and is a "loving, kind man."

Of course, I never said Travolta was homophobic or unkind and Waters'response ignored the central point of my argument about the dangers ofreparative therapy.

Then on June 19, I appeared on Fox News' "O'Reilly Factor," mostly because Ithought it would be fun to go up against Bill O'Reilly, even if the topicwas this stupid flap over "Hairspray." O'Reilly couldn't have been nicerduring the commercial break. It's only when the cameras roll that he's incharacter as the irascible slayer of "spin."


Gay activists split over trans amendment in Broward
Poor timing could jeopardize human rights ordinance, Bodiford says

Friday, July 20, 2007

Local gay activists are split over a proposal to add transgendered people asa protected category in the Broward County Human Rights Ordinance.

In an interview this week with the Express, gay rights attorney RobinBodiford said she supports transgendered rights, but she thinks trying toamend the county's human rights ordinance at this time could cause abacklash that could threaten gay and lesbian protections in the ordinance.Others, including a lawyer for the National Center for Lesbian Rights andEquality Florida, disagreed and argued that the time is right to add transprotections to the ordinance.

Bodiford explained that she was advised "by the powers that be" to "goquickly and without any delay" to the Human Rights Board about what shebelieves is the strategic error of amending the ordinance at this time.

"As a result, I sent out a letter without talking to the group first," sheexplained. "They became really angry. What happened is that it's becomereally polarized."


Express Gay News

State Rep. Allen arrested for soliciting sex in a restroom
Fla. Republican has anti-gay record and authored 'lewd acts' bill
Friday, July 20, 2007

Florida state Rep. Robert Allen was arrested July 11 for allegedlysoliciting prostitution from a male undercover police officer in a publicrestroom in Titusville, Fla.

Allen, a Republican from Merritt Island, Fla., authored a bill earlier thisyear that would have toughened Florida's law regarding "lewd and lascivious"acts. Allen also has an anti-gay record as a lawmaker, supporting a stateconstitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage and also backing the state's ban on gay people adopting children. Allen also opposed a schoolanti-bullying bill that would have provided specific protections for gaystudents, according to news reports.

Allen was arrested in the restroom at Space View Park in Titusville after heallegedly offered an undercover officer $20 to allow him to perform oral sexon the officer, according to the police report. Allen has vigorously deniedthe charges and said he plans to fight them in court.


Sex in public places is vice of married, closeted men, therapist says
Sexual incidents in restrooms and other public venues appear to bediminishing

Friday, July 20, 2007

At first glance, it appears that the timing of state Rep. Bob Allen's arrestlast week for soliciting sex in a public restroom couldn't have been betterfor Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle.

In a July 4 interview with the Sun-Sentinel, the mayor chastised gays forengaging in sex in public restrooms and proposed a $250,000 robotic toiletat Sebastian Beach to prevent such practices.

"Homosexuals. they're engaging in sex, anonymous sex, illegal sex," Naugletold the Sun-Sentinel, touching off a firestorm of protests.

Then along come the allegations against Allen to prove Naugle's point.

Well, not exactly.

First of all, it should be noted that Rep. Allen is a married man leading a heterosexual life. According to a local psychotherapist, that is the typicalprofile of an individual who engages in anonymous gay sex in public placessuch as restrooms and rest stops. Most of those involved in so-called "tearoom" sex are not leading openly gay lives, according to Ed Ullmann, a localpsychotherapist who has been practicing for 45 years.

Over the years, Ullmann said he has seen about 40 patients who discussedtheir experiences with public sex, including some who were arrested.


The Bush Administration
All the Lies about Iraq and Nuclear Weapons.


This video is worth watching!


The First "Gay Presidential Debate".Nope, Not a Joke!
Posted by GayPatriot at 7:30 pm - July 10, 2007.
Filed under: Post 9-11 America, Hypocrite Rights Campaign, Gay PC Silliness,Gay America, Gay Politics, 2008 Presidential Politics

For the first time the leading candidates for the presidency will hold atelevised debate devoted solely to LGBT issues. The one-hour event will beheld on August 9 and broadcast on gay network LOGO at 9:00 pm ET (6:00 pmET) and through live streaming video at

Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards have confirmed they willparticipate. Several other Democratic candidates also may join the debate.The debate will be conducted with a live audience in Los Angeles. On thepanel questioning the two Democrats will be Human Rights Campaign presidentJoe Solmonese and singer Melissa Etheridge.

The debate was put together by LOGO and HRC. "In the 2008 presidentialelection, issues of concern to the LGBT community have already been at theforefront of the national conversation," said Solmonese.


Ft. Lauderdale

Equality for All: A Town Hall Dialog on Transgender Issues

Friday | August 3, 2007 | 7:00 - 8:30 PM


1717 N Andrews Ave, FT Lauderdale, FL 33311

Parking is available in the Community Center parking lot and on surroundingstreets.

Join the Human Rights Campaign and the Gay and Lesbian Community Center ofSouth Florida to discuss these issues! Tracee McDaniel will moderate. Hearfrom Susan Stanton and transgender activist Blue on their personalexperiences.


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