Saturday, July 28, 2007

GLBT DIGEST July 28, 2007

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Where They Stand: Part One
Our forum primer on how the Dems see GLBT issues.
by Jennifer Vanasco,

For the first time in history, the major candidates from a major politicalparty - Democrats, of course - will be gathering in a public forum todiscuss gay issues in front of an audience of gay people.

The forum, called "The Visible Vote '08" and sponsored by LOGO (which owns365Gay) and HRC, will be broadcast from Los Angeles on August 9 - already,GLBT's from around the country are submitting video questions.

A significant amount of information is already out there about the candidate's take on the issues. Before you send in your questions, do a little prepwork: here, in two parts, is a round-up of what the Dems have said theybelieve.

Part One, below, will focus (in alphabetical order) on Hilary Clinton, MikeDodd, John Edwards and Mike Gravel; Part Two, next Friday, will put thespotlight on Dennis Kucinich, Barack Obama and Bill Richardson.

We bullet the issues that are easily quantifiable-a candidate's stance onmarriage, for instance-and then try to sum up in a paragraph or two some ofthe nuances.

What will they say during the forum? Print out our round-up before you watchThe Visible Vote '08 and see if they are consistent with their histories, orif on that historic night, they decide to break new ground.


Equal Marriage: Voted twice against the Constitutional amendment to bansame-sex marriage (called the Federal Marriage Amendment, or FMA). If theamendment were enacted, it would have restricted marriage to a man and awoman. It may also have restricted civil unions and domestic partnerships.However, during her husband's administration, she supported the Defense ofMarriage Act, which prevented the federal government from recognizingsame-sex marriage.

She seems to both oppose same-sex marriage and an amendment against it,which, in political circles, is considered a compromise position.

She is on record as supporting civil unions.

Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Has supported ending the policy since 1999. Recentlydefended Pres. Clinton's implementation of DADT as "an important first step." She has also said that DADT "hurts all of our troops and this, tome, is a matter of national security."

Hate Crimes: An original co-sponsor of the bill that would add sexualorientation and gender identity to groups protected by hate crimeslegislation.

ENDA: Has committed to passing the federal law outlawing employmentdiscrimination based on sexual orientation. She says she will introduce ameasure extending benefits to the partners of federal employees.

HIV/AIDS: Co-sponsored legislation to bring Medicaid coverage to low-income, HIV-positive Americans. Pressed for full funding of the Ryan White CAREAct, an increase of $236 million.

Transgender Issues: Signed the GenderPac Diversity Statement affirming thatthey do not discriminate in hiring when it comes to sexual orientation andgender identity and expression. Supports including gender identity andexpression in both ENDA and hate crimes legislation, though as late as lastfall, she did not support trans inclusion in ENDA.


As early as 2000, Clinton supported full domestic partnership benefits forgays and lesbians, back before Civil Unions were really on the table.

She also supports full rights for gay parents, including adoption rights.She was not a co-sponsor of the Uniting of American Families Act, whichwould provide same-sex partners with the same immigration benefits as legalspouses, but she supports the legislation.

In October 2006, she said, "I believe in full equality of benefits, nothingleft out. From my perspective, there is a greater likelihood of us gettingto that point in civil unions or domestic partnerships, and that is my veryconsidered assessment."

In her position paper on gay rights, Clinton says, "The LGBT community willalways have an open door to a Clinton White House."


go to website for the full article.


MD Faces Discipline Hearing Following Attack On Gays
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: July 26, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(London) The president of the Islamic Medical Association has been calledbefore Britain's medical profession's board of conduct following aparticularly vicious attack on gays in a medical journal.

In a letter to the editor of Pulse - a journal for British doctors - DrMuhammad Siddiq allegedly said that gay patients deserve neither help norpity but they do need "the stick of the law to put them on the right path."

"There is punishment and fine if you throw rubbish or filth in the streets.The gays are worse than the ordinary careless citizen," the letter said. Italso claimed that gays "are causing the spread of disease with theirirresponsible behavior. They are the root of many sexually transmitteddiseases."

In addition the letter said that a depressed transsexual awaiting genderreassignment was "twisted."

After a complaint was filed with the medical board Siddiq denied writing theletter, claiming that it was written by his son as a joke and he signed itnot knowing the son would send it to the publication.

But Pulse says that it checked with Siddiq prior to publishing the letterand he did not deny writing it. Colleagues also say that he told them he hadwritten the letter.

Siddiq is employed by a clinic in the West Midlands funded by thegovernment.


The Advocate


Kanye West denies gay rumors, bashes homophobia

Although hip-hop superstar Kanye West may shy away from the gangsta personaembraced by his peers, it doesn't mean he is afraid to stand up for himself.During a recent interview in New York City with Hot 97 radio DJ AngieMartinez, West responded to implications made by fellow rapper Beanie Sigelthat West is gay, reports the Black Entertainment Television cable network.

In an interview conducted earlier this year for the upcoming DVD Beef IV,Sigel criticized West's fashion sense and advised the rapper to "come out ofthe closet." West, in turn, denied that he is gay, adding, "It's sodisrespectful." He then expressed his distaste for the homophobia that isprevalent in hip-hop culture.

Upset that Sigel-who is on the same record label as West, Roc-a-Fella-wouldgo to the press rather than confront him privately, West concluded theinterview with an appeal to Sigel, asking, "Why wouldn't you come to me andtalk to me about it?" (The Advocate)


The Advocate

Chicago gay man says he turned down cash but was still arrested forprostitution

A Chicago man who was arrested and charged with prostitution and possessionof a controlled substance has filed a federal civil lawsuit against fiveofficers, alleging that he was unlawfully arrested, prosecuted,, anddefamed, reports the Chicago Free Press.

The complaint says Dion Contreras of Chicago was in front of a gay bar inthe Lakeview neighborhood when an undercover officer in an unmarked carapproached him and said, "I'll give you $20 for a blow job." Contrerasoffered to do it for free, which forced the officer to either accept theencounter or decline and blow his cover. That's when the officer called infour other officers to make the arrest.

Once Contreras was taken to police headquarters, he was searched, found tobe carrying a small amount of cocaine, and jailed for two days. Police thensent a copy of the charges to the Illinois Criminal Justice InformationAuthority, where Contreras works. Initially he was placed on administrativeleave, but he was later suspended pending a review of the incident.

Contreras's lawyer, Brendan Shiller, claims his client was the innocentvictim of a larger sting operation. "They outed him to his employer, thentold them that he was a criminal," said Shiller.

The Free Press reports that both the prostitution charge and the possessioncharge against Contreras were eventually dropped . In the meantime,Contreras has been unable to return to work while his employer continueswith an inquiry. The lawsuit seeks compensation for mental, emotional, andphysical damages, lost wages, legal fees, traumas, humiliation, loss ofliberty, and mental distress and anguish. (The Advocate)


The Advocate

A father's appeal: choose to act
As Congress moves to make the Matthew Shepard Act a reality, Dennis Shepardurges you to take action

By Dennis Shepard
An exclusive posted July 27, 2007

When my son Matthew was murdered nearly nine years ago, my family had adecision to make. We could mourn Matthew's death privately-withdrawing intosome semblance of seclusion, try to resume our "normal" lives, pretendingthat nothing had changed. or we could use this tragedy to talk about hateand help make Matthew's murder a wake-up call throughout our country. Wemade our decision-a choice we consciously and proudly continue to supportevery day.

Our son died because of hate. He was killed simply because he was gay. Forus, our choice was a no-brainer. Not a day goes by that I don't think aboutMatthew-his spirit, his passion for people, or his smile. And since hisdeath, we have witnessed more acts of hate, bigotry, and injustice againstother lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender Americans. For Matthew and all ofthe other victims, our family has chosen to fight and to act-to speak outagainst hate, to come out as allies, and to engage ourselves in the processof change.

Some days are harder than others, but I choose to act for the memory of myson. I choose to act for the memories of the thousands of victims of hatecrimes. I choose to act for those who don't have the strength or ability toact. I choose to act because we as a nation cannot afford not to act.

I choose to act because I was, and still am, very proud of my son-of who hewas and the struggles he had to overcome to become that man. I choose to actbecause I never want another LGBT American to go through the fear, the pain,the violence, or the loneliness that Matthew went through on that horriblenight. I choose to act because I never want another parent to go throughwhat we went through-the grief, the giant hole in the heart, the bedsidevigil, or the realization that holidays, family vacations, and the normal,dull routine of work, home, and life will never, ever be the same.


The Advocate

Called "The Great Sofa," there's nothing sleepy about Havana's Malecon

They call it ''The Great Sofa'' because hundreds of Cubans sit here day andnight, year-round. The fabled Malecon seawall, a concrete promenadeseparating a jammed six-lane boulevard and an often-angry Atlantic, isalways crowded-but never with the same crowd.

''It's like New York,'' said Fernando Roldan, a 37-year-old masseur who wasguzzling rum as he lounged on the seawall after midnight one weekend. ''Itnever sleeps.''

A typical dawn finds fishermen on the low wall over the waves, casting intoinky blue water glistening with runoff from a refinery that billows blacksmoke in the distance.

Children heading to school walk atop the wall, casting shadows as long asthe adults on the adjacent sidewalk. A woman faces the ocean and crossesherself, mouthing a prayer before hurrying on to work, while a brigade ofstreet sweepers fans out-sometimes steering their wooden brooms aroundchatty drunks still going from the night before.

U.S. military engineers first began building the Malecon in 1901, pavingover scrub brush while American forces still occupied Cuba following theSpanish-American War. Today, it stretches four miles from Old Havana west,past the office of the American mission and the black flags Cuba fliesoutside its windows, and on to the Almendares River.


The Advocate

Madonna: The X-Rated Interview

She's ballsy, irreverent, and still thoughtful-everything you love aboutMadonna. Venture back to 1991 with this epic conversation between TheAdvocate's Don Shewey and the woman who taught America how to vogue.

By Don Shewey
An exclusive posted July 23, 2007
She's done it again

In her eight-year rise from disco-pop contender to international multimedialegend, Madonna has never failed to incite fascination and controversy withone hit record, one sensational video, one mediocre movie after another. Oneof the first pop stars made by and for MTV, she titillated viewers with herbare belly button and her boy-toy belt buckle. She also made the word"virgin" not only speakable but unavoidable in teen-girl parlance.

She's challenged feminists by putting the choice back in pro-choice with hersong about teenage motherhood, "Papa Don't Preach"-and then in concert usedthe song to chide the pope for opposing birth control. Her "Like a Prayer"video, in which she seduces a black saint and ends up with drippingstigmata, scared Pepsi into canceling the commercial it had paid her $5million to do.

She endured a stormy, highly publicized marriage to and divorce fromphotophobic actor Sean Penn. Then her public escapades with comedian SandraBernhard courted rumors that the two were having a lesbian affair. Duringher Blond Ambition tour, she was threatened with arrest in Toronto formasturbating onstage. When MTV banned her "Justify My Love" video, depictinga pansexual orgy in a Paris hotel room, she went on ABC's Nightline to,well, justify her love of provocation.

You ain't seen nothin,' though, until you've seen Truth or Dare, herdocumentary film opening this month. Salacious tidbits from the film, shotduring the Blond Ambition tour, have been conversation pieces for weeks:Here's Madonna reminiscing about the childhood girlfriend who finger-fuckedher, there's Madonna bluntly asking one of her dancers if he's ever taken itup the ass and then watching openmouthed while two others act out her dareto tongue-kiss each other.

Not the least of the film's groundbreaking aspects is its perspective on gayculture. It's hard to think of another film about a nongay subject in whichthe presence of gay people is not only normal and accepted but treasured. Ofher seven dancers, all are ethnic minorities, and all but one are gay.Madonna clearly identifies with them, camping and partying and flirting withthem freely.


Express Gay News

Conservative Anglicans threatening boycott of major meeting
Group calling for U.S. church discipline for ordaining openly gay bishop
NEW YORK (AP) | Jul 26, 2:51 PM

A committee representing many conservative Anglican bishops overseas saysits members won't attend a critical once-a-decade Anglican meeting next yearunless the U.S. Episcopal Church is disciplined for ordaining an openly gaybishop.

The steering committee for the Global South Primates said that the EpiscopalChurch, which is the Anglican body in the U.S., has caused a rift by failingto repent for the 2003 consecration of New Hampshire Bishop V. GeneRobinson, who lives with his male partner.

The meeting, called the Lambeth Conference, gathers bishops from around theworld to discuss the future of the 77 million-member Anglican Communion.

"It is their rejection of the clear teaching of the church and theircontinuing intransigence that have divided the church and has brought ourbeloved communion to the breaking point," the committee said in a July 18statement.

Theological conservatives believe the Bible bars gay relationships.Advocates for full acceptance of gays emphasize the social justice teachingson tolerance in Scripture.

It is customary for all Anglican bishops to attend the Lambeth meeting. Butthe communion's spiritual leader, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams,has said he will not invite Robinson or bishops linked to overseasconservatives who have formed two U.S. missions to challenge theliberal-leaning Episcopal Church on its home turf. The missions violate anAnglican tradition that church leaders, called primates, only minister tochurches within their own territories.


Express Gay News

Hate crimes bill in limbo
Senate leaders mum on timetable; Pelosi sees ENDA vote in September
By LOU CHIBBARO JR. | Jul 26, 10:16 AM

A gay- and transgender-inclusive hate crimes bill will remain stalled in theSenate until at least September and could remain in limbo until October orlater, Capitol Hill sources familiar with the legislation said.

In a related development, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)indicated this week she expects to bring another key gay rights bill, theEmployment Non-Discrimination Act, or ENDA, to the House floor for a vote inSeptember.

"We expect ENDA on the floor in September," said Sydney Jones, a Pelosispokesperson.

ENDA would ban employment discrimination based on a person's sexualorientation and gender identity.

Gay rights leaders had hoped the Senate would vote to approve the MatthewShepard Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act earlier this monthas an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act.

But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) pulled the defense bill fromthe Senate floor July 18 after it became entangled in a heated debate overthe Iraq war, raising questions about its use as a "vehicle" for the hatecrimes bill.

The Shepard hate crimes bill would give the federal government authority toprosecute hate crimes based on a person's sexual orientation, genderidentity, gender or disability.

The Human Rights Campaign and the National Center for Transgender Equalitysaid this week that the strategy of seeking to attach the bill to thedefense authorization measure appears to be the best option for passing thebill in the Senate, despite the road block created by Reid putting thedefense bill on hold.

Earlier this year, Sens. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.),the two lead sponsors of the Senate hate crimes bill, decided to offer thebill as an amendment to the defense measure as a safeguard against apossible veto by President Bush.



State's top court says domestic violence law not in conflict with gaymarriage ban

'The state does not create cohabitation,' Chief Justice Moyer said
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) | Jul 25, 4:03 PM

Ohio's domestic violence laws do not conflict with the state's ban on gaymarriage, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled today.

In a 6-1 decision, justices rejected the argument that the domestic violencelaw is unenforceable in cases involving unmarried couples because it refersto them as living together "as a spouse."

Chief Justice Thomas Moyer said in the opinion that lawmakers included manygroups under the domestic violence law, not just unwed couples, and thatdescribing people's living arrangements isn't the same as creating a lawapproximating marriage. The ban prohibited the government from creating anysuch approximation.

"The state does not create cohabitation; rather it is a person'sdetermination to share some of life's responsibilities with another thatcreates cohabitation," Moyer wrote. "The state does not have a role increating cohabitation, but it does have a role in creating a marriage."

The case was being closely watched around the country for the precedent itcould set affecting a dozen similarly worded bans. It is among the firstbefore a state Supreme Court to interpret any of the constitutionalgay-marriage bans passed after Massachusetts allowed same-sex marriages.

A Warren County Common Pleas judge had dismissed a felony domestic violencecharge against Michael Carswell of Lebanon after he argued the section ofthe law under which he was charged conflicted with the new marriageamendment. The charge, in which he was accused of assaulting his live-ingirlfriend, was reinstated by an appeals court. Wednesday's ruling upholdsthe appeals court's decision.


Express Gay News

Moderators announced for HRC's gay forum

Logo and the Human Rights Campaign have announced the moderators for the gaypresidential forum on Aug. 9. The forum, now officially called 'The VisibleVote '08,' will include journalists Margaret Carlson and Jonathan Capehart,who will join Joe Solmonese, president of HRC, and lesbian rocker MelissaEtheridge on the panel.

Margaret Carlson was the managing editor of the New Republic before shebegan working for Time magazine, where she eventually became the first womancolumnist in Time's history in 1994. She is now a columnist for theBloomberg News and a contributor for the Huffington Post. As a politicalcommentator, her coverage of gay-related issues includes the pieces: 'McCainand his gaydar,' 'Daughters book reveals little about Cheney,' 'Praying awaythe gay' and 'Bush dismays party base on gay marriage ban.' Carlson was alsomanaging editor at The New Republic, Washington bureau chief for Esquiremagazine and a member of the panel on CNN's The Capitol Gang.

Capehart is a gay Washington Post editorial page writer and a Pulitzer Prizewinner. He and members of the New York Daily News editorial board won theaward in 1999 for a series of articles about Harlem's Apollo Theatre.Capehart also wrote for the Bloomberg News from 2000-01. He is a member ofthe National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association.


Dear MoveOn member,

Did you see the New York Times front-page headline? Democratic leaders inCongress are under pressure to give up on a voting paper trail for 2008,delaying the change until 2012.1

This is ridiculous. The 2008 deadline is doable1-even Florida is making thechange before 2008. And the 2008 deadline is necessary-without a papertrail, we won't be sure who won the White House.

Congressman Ron Klein supports a paper trail. Can you urge him to stand upand fight for passage of the 2008 deadline?

Congressman Ron Klein
Phone: 202-225-3026

Then, please report your call by clicking here:

The recent New York Times front-page story reads:

Democratic leaders in the House and Senate are slowing their drive to revampthe nation's voting systems, aides said yesterday...Overhauling voting systems before next year's presidential election had oncebeen a top Democratic priority...

Congress needs to hear from people like us who understand the urgency ofsecuring our voting machines before the 2008 election.


Ft. Lauderdale

Help Stonewall Library and Archives thank our friends on the City and CountyCommissions

We are writing today to encourage our many friends and supporters to send anote to our wonderful Broward County Commissioners for their continuingstrong support of Stonewall. We also hope you will write to CityCommissioners Hutchinson, Rodstrom and Moore to thank them again for theirsupport of our community and of Stonewall. I am including the Commissioners'e-mail addresses below.

Ilene Lieberman
Kristin Jacobs
Stacy Ritter
Ken Keechl
Lois Wexler
Sue Gunzburger
John Rodstrom
Diana Wasserman-Rubin
Josephus Eggelletion

Charlotte Rodstrom
Carlton Moore
Cindi Hutchinson


Jack Rutland
Executive Director
Stonewall Library & Archives
1717 N Andrews Ave
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33311
(954) 763-8565


Ft. Lauderdale

Stonewall Library and Archives on Television

This Sunday, July 29, at 11:00 am, Stonewall President Dr. Nate Klarfeldwill be a guest on local CBS-affiliate channel 4's "4 Sunday Morning"program with Elliott Rodriguez. Nate will appear with Broward CountyCommissioner Stacy Ritter.

We hope you will all tune in.

Jack Rutland
Executive Director

Stonewall Library & Archives
1717 N Andrews Ave
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33311
(954) 763-8565


Senior Muslim Doctor Denies Writing Anti-Gay Letter
23rd July 2007
by Divya Guha

A homophobic Muslim doctor is being disciplined for saying that homosexuals,"need the stick of law to put them on the right path" and that they deserveneither help nor pity.

This Hippocratic slur comes from a doctor who is the President of theIslamic Medical Association, which claims to represent 99% of the UK Muslimcommunity.

The offending medic, Dr Muhammad Siddiq, wrote in a letter to doctor'smagazine Pulse:

"There is punishment and fine if you throw rubbish or filth in the streets.The gays are worse than the ordinary careless citizen.

"They are causing the spread of disease with their irresponsible behaviour.They are the root of many sexually transmitted diseases."

The letter went on to call a depressed transsexual awaiting genderreassignment "twisted."

Dr Siddiq denies that he authored the letter and claims his son was playinga "cynical spoof" on him by forcing him to sign the letter and sending it toPulse, a magazine for GPs.

When the magazine contacted Dr Siddiq for further comment, he made no effortto deny his views.

Allegedly, he has privately told his colleagues that he had actually writtenthe letter.

When the magazine published extracts of the letter's contents, hisemployers, Walsall PCT Primary Care Trusts, called him to discuss his views.

Gay rights group Stonewall criticised Dr Siddiq's comments as proof thathomophobia exists in certain pockets of the medical community.

The chair of the Muslim Health Network Dr Khalid Wyne condemned his remarks:

"Sexual orientation should not interfere in a GP's judgement of the healthneeds of a patient," he told the Daily Mail.

The controversy is further bad press for the Muslim medical community stilltrying to come to terms with recent allegations of NHS doctors supportingterror plots.

Dr Siddiq's PCT disciplinary hearing will be held next week.


Amsterdam's gay parade on water adds "hetero boat"

Fri Jul 27, 2007 6:52PM IST

AMSTERDAM (Reuters Life!) - Amsterdam's gay boat parade, which each yearattracts hundreds of thousands of spectators, will be joined by a boat ofheterosexual people this year in a protest against rising intolerance in theNetherlands.

The organiser of the "hetero boat", Coos Peterse, said on Friday it'sinclusion was a reaction to a growing number of attacks against homosexualsin the Netherlands.

Dutch media reported this month that a kissing lesbian couple was attackedin Nijmegen and had to be treated in hospital. In Amsterdam, two gay menwere abused and one was seriously injured.

"What always bothered me is that the public reaction wasn't that strong. Iwould expect a much stronger outcry," Peterse, 25, said.

"Since I wasn't hearing it, I thought maybe it was a good idea to make a
statement, to celebrate with them that you're free in Holland to live toyour own preference."

The "hetero boat", an old navy tender, will hold about 30 people, Petersesaid.

Amsterdam's gay pride is celebrated on Aug. 3 to Aug. 5. Hundreds ofthousands of people line the city's canals every year to see the boatparade, whose participants either wear flamboyant outfits or not much atall. The celebration then continues at a number of street parties across thecity.


MTV Logo and the Human Rights Campaign Foundation are about to make history.

On August 9, we'll be co-hosting the first ever televised presidential forumdedicated solely to questions about GLBT issues - and I'm thrilled toannounce that I will join singer Melissa Etheridge and esteemed journalistJonathan Capehart as panelists!

I'll be there representing you so I need your help.

Click here to tell me what you want to hear by submitting your questions forthe candidates!

This forum is really exciting for me because you and I will have theopportunity to ask the leading Democratic presidential candidates theirstance on issues most important to our community.

Want to know what Senator Clinton really thinks of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell?"Want to hear Senator Obama's thoughts on Hate Crimes legislation, or whatSenator Edwards would do to address GLBT workplace discrimination? This isyour chance.

We'll have their undivided attention for two hours, so submit your questions

This historic two-hour forum, moderated by Margaret Carlson, will bebroadcast live on the Logo network and online at the Logo website onThursday, Aug. 9, starting at 9 p.m. EST.

Confirmed candidates now include:
a.. Hillary Clinton,
b.. Christopher Dodd,
c.. John Edwards,
d.. Mike Gravel,
e.. Dennis Kucinich,
f.. Barack Obama, and
g.. Bill Richardson.

This is our best chance to hear where these candidates stand on GLBT issues.The deadline for submissions is August 1st, so speak up today!

This forum is a testament to the hard work we've done together to keep GLBTissues at the forefront of American politics. Be sure to tune in on August9. I look forward to your questions and to hearing the candidates'responses.

To find out how to get Logo, click here or watch the forum live on Logo'swebsite.

Thank you for all you do.


Joe Solmonese


Broward County, FL


Dear GLBT supporter:

In 1996 and again in 2001, you, along with many others, joined Americans forEquality in the fight to preserve GLBT rights in Broward County.

Because of your efforts, the Broward County gay and lesbian community enjoysprotection from discrimination in housing, employment and publicaccommodations as well as domestic partner benefits.

As the political consultant who worked with Americans for Equality, Iremember, all too well, the negative remarks in the press by anti-gayactivists and elected officials, the anti-gay protests and the polarizationof the entire community from the divisive campaign.

Unfortunately, we now find ourselves facing another potential repealinitiative referendum.

It is imperative you attend a community meeting scheduled for nextWednesday, August 1 at 7 p.m. at the Ft. Lauderdale Gay and LesbianCommunity Center, 1717 N. Andrews Ave., (1 mile south of Oakland ParkBoulevard).

Your immediate action is required.

With your help, we can greatly minimize the potential risk to the GLBTcommunity and save our hard fought rights.

A coordinated effort now may spare the GLBT community from fending offanother repeal referendum in 2008.

We can't do this without your support. Please come and bring a friend.

Your attendance is critical. We will give you all of the information youneed to take immediate action.

Take the opportunity to forward this E-mail to anyone you believe isconcerned about preserving the hard fought rights of the GLBT community.

I look forward to seeing you there.

You may contact either myself or Robin Bodiford, Past Chair, Americans forEquality, at the numbers below, if you have any questions.

Your partner in the battle,

Richard Giorgio
Patriot Games, Inc.


Attorney Robin L. Bodiford
Past Chair, Americans for Equality


Oakland Park, FL

At the request of TERI, Oakland Park City Commissioner Suzanne Boisvenue hasintroduced an ordinance (agenda item no. 18) to include "gender identity"and "gender expression" as part of the city's non-discrimination policy.The item must first come before the entire City Commission as a discussionitem then in approximately one month as the actual motion.

Agenda back-up material:

The entire GLBT community has recently been targeted for attacks by electedofficials (outside of Oakland Park) and misguided religious leaders.

Sadly and most recently, a member of our own community has launched acampaign to demand we cease and desist in the support of any legal remedyand action to ensure the same basic human rights for transgenderindividuals. At this current time, transgender individuals lack the sameprotections and human rights that we enjoy

The compassionate GLBT members of TERI demand an end to our society settinga standard of trans-individuals being relegated to indentured servitude.

TERI was formed a few months ago by a compassionate group of GLBT communitymembers that meet regularly at the Gay & Lesbian Community Center of SouthFlorida and by conference call.

The transgender community needs our assistance to partner and support withcourageous leaders such as Commissioner Suzanne Boisvenue. CommissionerBoisvenue serves as a champion to advocate for underserved members ofeveryone's community. I have met with Commissioner Boisvenue on manyoccasions and along with others, grateful that she in the fight to demandRESPECT and DIGNITY for all persons and continues to demand that "NO PERSONEXPERIENCE DISCRIMINATION OF ANY KIND!"

We invite you to support Commissioner Suzanne Boisvenue by attending OaklandPark's City Commission meeting on Wednesday, August 1 at 6:30PM.

When: Wednesday, August 1, 2007 at 6:30

Where: City of Oakland Park

City Hall Commissioner Chambers

3650 NE 12 Avenue

Oakland Park, FL 33334

For additional information on TERI and other initiatives, please contact:

Michael Emanuel Rajner, Co-Administrator

Transgender Equality Rights Initiatives (TERI)

Telephone: (954) 272-8131



The Washington Post

July 28, 2007
Scientists' Tests Hack Into Electronic Voting Machines in California andElsewhere

Computer scientists from California universities have hacked into threeelectronic voting systems used in California and elsewhere in the nation andfound several ways in which vote totals could potentially be altered,according to reports released yesterday by the state.

The reports, the latest to raise questions about electronic voting machines,came to light on a day when House leaders announced in Washington that theyhad reached an agreement on measures to revamp voting systems and increasetheir security.

The House bill would require every state to use paper records that would letvoters verify that their ballots had been correctly cast and that would beavailable for recounts.

The House majority leader, Representative Steny H. Hoyer, Democrat ofMaryland, and the original sponsor of the bill, Representative Rush D. Holt,Democrat of New Jersey, said it would require hundreds of counties withpaperless machines to install backup paper trails by the presidentialelection next year while giving most states until 2012 to upgrade theirmachines further.


The Washington Post

Getting Fingers Off Triggers
By Colbert I. King
Saturday, July 28, 2007; A19

In announcing his intention this week to seek a Supreme Court rulingupholding the District's strict gun laws, Mayor Adrian Fenty said, "Thehandgun ban has saved many lives and will continue to do so if it remains ineffect." Can't argue with that. Gun control advocates tell us that a gunkept in the home is more likely to be used in an unintentional shooting orin an attempted or completed suicide than in self-defense. What's more, thecombination of guns and domestic violence is lethal. So, yes, the ban hasprobably saved lives.

But has the 30-year-old gun ban made our streets any safer? Since thehandgun ban has been on the books, the criminally minded have been usingguns with a frequency that rivals breathing.

From 1987 through Wednesday, there have been more than 6,400 homicides inthe District of Columbia, most committed with firearms. That figure doesn'tinclude non-fatal shootings.

This year, the 7th Police District in Southeast Washington alone had noted181 shootings up to Wednesday, according to Post reporter Allison Klein. Androbberies by gun-wielding thugs? The Post's weekly Crime Report noted 44gun-related robberies between July 6 and 12.


The Washington Post

What Use Were All The Wars?
By Mona Eltahawy
Saturday, July 28, 2007; Page A19

VELEN, Germany -- If turning 40 isn't challenging enough, try preparing forthis milestone when you're as old as one of the worst defeats Arab armiesever suffered at Israeli hands. Wars mark time and generations in the MiddleEast, so it's difficult not to take the humiliation personally.

My birth at the end of July 1967 makes me a child of the naksa, or setback,as the Arab defeat during the June 1967 war is euphemistically known inArabic. There was no Summer of Love for us in 1967. We Children of the Naksawere born not only on the cusp of loss but also of the kind ofdisillusionment that whets the appetite of religious zealots.

My parents' generation grew up high on the Arab nationalism that EgyptianPresident Gamal Abdel Nasser brandished in the 1950s. By 1967, humiliationwas decisively stepping into pride's large, empty shoes.


The Washington Post

Rush for Credit
Congress records some modest -- and dubious -- achievements as it headstoward summer recess.
Saturday, July 28, 2007; Page A18

THE DEMOCRATIC congressional leadership is anxious to put some points on thelegislative scoreboard before it leaves for its summer break. This week,lawmakers made progress with one of their top priorities: a homelandsecurity bill contains some useful improvements, though it is not as good asit could have been or as its sponsors claim. Meanwhile, Democrats slid backinto farm business as usual with passage of a bill that preserves wastefulsubsidies.


The Washington Post

This site lets you browse every vote in the U.S. Congress since 1991.

Read more about the site.


The Miami Herald

Rudy and Mitt get cold feet before debate

Are Rudy and Mitt afraid of Frosty?

Republican presidential candidates Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney areclaiming ''scheduling conflicts'' with the next YouTube-CNN debate, on Sept.17 in St. Petersburg, co-hosted by the Republican Party of Florida. In asignature moment from Monday's Democratic debate, a snowman -- via YouTubevideo -- asked about global warming.

''I think the presidency ought to be held at a higher level than having toanswer questions from a snowman,'' Romney told The Manchester Union Leadernewspaper in New Hampshire.

It's baffling why Romney, polling in the single digits in Florida, wouldblow off a chance to raise his profile. Giuliani, the front-runningcandidate, says he, too, is unlikely to show.

''I have no problem at all with the format,'' Giuliani told Miami radio showhost Jim DeFede. ``My campaign informed me yesterday that CNN just wentahead and picked a date, didn't bother to ask us, and we have six events onthat date that are already scheduled.''

Neither campaign detailed their commitments. With the debate coming twoweeks before the end of the third quarter, I'd bet Frosty's corncob pipethey have fundraisers scheduled that day.

Perhaps Giuliani isn't a YouTube kind of guy. At a time when candidates areembracing social networking over the Internet like never before, Giulianihas no Facebook page. Of all of the major candidates, he has raised theleast amount of money online.

YouTube's freewheeling format reflects democracy at its best and worst.Skipping the debate would suggest that the GOP candidates aren't down withthe people, especially young people. CNN said Monday's debate drew the mostviewers between the ages of 18 and 34 -- the demographic most coveted byadvertisers -- of any cable news debate since 1992.



LDS leaders speak out on same-sex attraction
Pamphlet attempts to clarify stance on issue
By Carrie A. Moore
Deseret Morning News

LDS Church leaders have posted a new pamphlet on their Web site thisweek, answering questions often raised by church members regarding same-sexattraction and how to deal with it.

The new resource, which is being announced through a letter to LDSbishops and stake presidents, seeks to assure troubled church members ofGod's love despite challenges and questions, "including some related tosame-gender attractions, (that) must await a future answer, even in the nextlife."

It does not touch on scientific theories about homosexuality or itsorigins but addresses how to deal with it from a spiritual perspective. Thetext uses the term "same-gender attraction" rather than "gay" or"homosexual" to distinguish between a lifestyle choice and an attractiononly.

Church leaders were unavailable for comment on Thursday.

While few people have yet had a chance to study the new text, onetherapist familiar with the content said it is a valid attempt by churchleaders to reach out, acknowledging that anything official on such avolatile subject "can be misread. I feel for them," said David Pruden,executive director of the locally based Evergreen International - whichspecializes in counseling Latter-day Saints on the topic.


National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/

Gay Men Detained
For Kissing Outside Colosseum

Italian police detained two gay men for kissing outside the Colosseum andaccused them of "lewd conduct", sparking howls of protest on Friday fromrights groups and calls for an apology from a government minister.

The incident took place late on Thursday, when the men, aged 27 and 28, weretaken to a police station for several hours before being released, accordingto gay rights group Arcigay.



National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/

YDA Elects 2 Gay Men to Lead National Group

Young Democrats of America elected openly gay Dallas political activistDavid Hardt as president during the group's annual convention at the Adam'sMark Hotel on Saturday, July 21.

Hardt is the first openly gay member to lead the group, and it was the firsttime for the convention to be held in a Texas city. The group elected openlygay Tennessee resident Chris Anderson as executive vice president.



Chicago Free Press

Archdiocese settles lawsuit that named Foley priest
Wed, 07/25/2007 - 20:42 - Admin

MIAMI-The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Miami has settled a sexual abuselawsuit that named a priest who acknowledged having inappropriate encounterswith former U.S. Rep. Mark Foley.

The settlement was announced July 18 in the lawsuit unrelated to the Foleycase. A man who was an altar boy at St. James Church in North Miami allegedthe Rev. Anthony Mercieca sexually abused him in the 1970s when he was about13 years old.

The man, identified only as John Doe 26, claimed Mercieca molested him inthe church's bell tower after a bicycle ride together.

The lawsuit was filed Oct. 25, about a month after Foley, a FloridaRepublican, resigned from Congress after his sexually explicit computermessages to young male pages surfaced. His lawyer later said Foley wasalcoholic, gay and had been molested as a boy by a clergyman.

Mercieca later said he massaged Foley in the nude and they swam nakedtogether, but he denied having sex with Foley.

The lawsuit had sought more than $10 million in damages. Terms of thesettlement were confidential, said the man's attorney, Jeffery Herman.

Mercieca has retired to the island of Malta in Europe. His attorney there,Alfred Grech, declined comment because he was not aware of the settlement orlawsuit.


Playtime for prejudice
From popular culture to politics, it's a great time to be gay - unless youare still at school

Paul Flynn
Saturday July 28, 2007

It is a good time to be gay in Britain. Forty years on from thelegalisation of homosexuality, this country has very nearly embraced aculture of acceptance. Say what you like about Tony Blair's legacy on anynumber of international issues, under New Labour the nation has movedsteadily towards a radical equalisation of homosexual and heterosexualrights. The change came in three critical instalments: the reduction of theage of legal consent to 16; the scrapping of Section 28; and the CivilPartnership Act, which confirmed that homosexuality was not simply aboutsex, but also about love and commitment.

This political evolution has been buffered by an encouraging culturalresponse. It is barely an issue any more for "known homosexuals" to beemployed in institutions where their presence would once have seemedunlikely - however rightwing media strive to dress it up. Newsworthy gayfigures at the Metropolitan police, the Conservative party, BP or CoronationStreet fail to attract the instant opprobrium they would have a decade ago.

From popular culture to politics, homosexuality has well and trulyescaped the margins. After a decade that has seen unapologetic homosexualsstake a substantial place in the mainstream, it would be a particularly hardpink heart that did not remember Blair with some fondness.

Yet if the quality of life for homosexual adults in Britain has movedon, one tricky demographic remains. We still have a muddled, irrational andinadequate response to gay adolescents. While a generation of gay men andwomen has grown to enjoy confidence and widespread acceptance, there remainmembers of a younger slice of society that see themselves as "the only gaysin the village" - and they sometimes are.

The gay community has partially itself to blame here. The concept ofyouth has become fetishised within the metropolitan gay idyll, driven byaspirations to a ceaselessly fashionable party lifestyle aesthetic. A wholeswath of postpubescent gay men feel disenfranchised by this projection. Whois going to take on the mantle of looking after gay adolescents?

Shocking suicide statistics underline the predicament. Research hasshown that 40% of gay boys bullied at school have gone on to attemptsuicide. Initiatives such as the superb Barnardo's campaign againsthomophobic bullying go some way to mending the problems, but these are toodeep to be tackled even by the best efforts of charities.


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