Thursday, August 09, 2007

GLBT DIGEST August 9, 2007

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The Sun-Sentinel,0,2566228.story

South Florida
Presidential candidates to address gay issues at Democratic forum
By Anthony Man
Political Writer
August 9, 2007

Gay voters have made a quantum leap as a Democratic Party constituency,joining blacks and organized labor as a bloc that commands attention fromthe party's presidential candidates.

The latest evidence: All the leading Democratic contenders and most of thesecond-tier hopefuls have agreed to assemble in Los Angeles tonight for acandidate forum on gay issues set to air on a national gay cable televisionchannel.

"It's incredibly significant," said Stephan Lampasso, chairman of the gayrights group Human Rights Campaign's South Florida committee, which includesBroward and Palm Beach counties. "It speaks to the mood of the nation,really, and the recognition of the importance of GLBT concerns."

The candidates are attending for a simple reason, said Dan Pinello, agovernment professor at the City University of New York and former chairmanof the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Caucus of the American Political ScienceAssociation. "The leading contenders can't take a risk of alienating thatbloc of voters."

In South Florida and across the nation, gay and lesbian voters are planningpublic gatherings and private events to watch the forum as they try tofigure out where to direct the energy of a force Pinello said may top 12percent of the Democratic primary vote in some states. The Florida Gay,Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Democratic Caucus estimates that 9.8 percentof Broward's population and 6.7 percent of Palm Beach County's populationfalls into one of those categories.

That six candidates are willing to appear at such an event is significant,said Fred Fejes of Fort Lauderdale, a professor of communications andmultimedia studies at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton. Fejes iswriting Moral Panic: The Origins of America's Debate on Gay Rights, due outin 2008.

Fejes said it shows they've analyzed the risk of a backlash from appearingsympathetic to gays and their issues, and they've decided that thepossibility of mobilizing a large number of Democratic voters is moreimportant.

A new Quinnipiac University Poll on Thursday found that support from gaygroups wouldn't hurt a presidential candidate's standing with 60 percent ofFlorida voters.

One in 10 would be more likely to vote for a candidate supported by gayrights groups and almost three in 10 would be less likely. Among Democrats,it's more likely to have a positive effect. For Republicans, it's far morelikely to have a negative effect.

Right now candidates are concentrating on winning the Democratic nomination.Pinello said they also have to think about voters in the November generalelection, so the leading contenders aren't likely to do anything dramatictonight, such as endorse same-sex marriage.

The sponsoring organization, Human Rights Campaign, generally endorsesDemocrats, and Republicans aren't part of tonight's forum.

Jack Majeske, past president of the Broward Log Cabin Republican Club, saidhe suspects some of his party's candidates aren't personally hostile towardgays, but he said it's something they keep quiet to avoid alienatingreligious conservatives who can determine who wins or loses primaries.

"They're all afraid of the Christian right," he said.

For Democrats, the forum is a chance to get more information about a rangeof gay-related issues. In typical debates and forums, one or two gay-relatedissues at most are raised.

Michael Albetta, president of the Florida GLBT Democratic Caucus, said hewould be looking for specifics. "I'm going to be looking to see who'slooking just to placate us."

Rand Hoch, founder of the gay rights group Palm Beach County Human RightsCouncil and former county Democratic chairman, said the gay community hasmatured to a point that a simple gesture of support isn't good enough.

"So far all of them have been generally supportive. But can any of thempoint to anything that they have actually accomplished that has anymeaningful impact on the GLBT community?"

Shirley Herman said she'll be taking notes.

Herman and Joan Waitkevicz, partners for 34 years, upgraded their cableservice so they could get the gay cable channel Logo and host aforum-watching gathering at their West Palm Beach home.

While welcoming the event, Herman said she'd be happier if it were on amajor television network rather than a cable channel many people have neverheard of.

"To hear the presidential candidates now talking about our issues is veryheartening. It's about time," she said. "It is, however, on Logo. It shouldbe on NBC. If they say it on Logo, they're safe. If they said it on NBC,they'd have more exposure."

ONLINE For more information about where Democratic presidential candidatesstand on the issues, go to .


Education Week

Survey: Subjects Trimmed To Boost Math and Science
By Alyson Klein

Nearly half the nation's school districts are spending less instructionaltime on subjects such as science, history, and art in order to prepare theirstudents for the mathematics and reading tests mandated under the5½-year-old No Child Left Behind Act, says a report released last week bythe Center on Education Policy.

In a nationally representative survey of 349 districts, the Washington-basedgroup found that 44 percent reported cutting time from other subjects tofocus on math and reading. The decreases were relatively substantial,according to the report, totaling about 141 minutes per week across allsubjects, or almost 30 minutes per day.

The July 24 report lends credibility to critics' contention that the NCLBlaw's emphasis on reading and math has squeezed out other subjects. It alsobolsters arguments that the law should be expanded to include tests inscience, social studies, and other subjects.


Education Week

Study: Low, High Fliers Gain Less Under NCLB
By Debra Viadero

A new study of Chicago students suggests that the federal No Child Left BehindAct may indeed be leaving behind students at the far ends of theacademic-ability spectrum- the least able students and those who are gifted.

The study by University of Chicago economists Derek A. Neal and DianeWhitmore Schanzenbach lends some empirical support to the common perceptionthat schools are focusing on students in the middle-the so-called "bubblekids"-in order to boost scores on the state exams used to determine whetherschools are meeting their proficiency targets.

"The whole point is that the details of how you calculate 'adequate yearlyprogress' matter for how teachers will allocate their effort acrossstudents," said Mr. Neal, who presented his paper July 16 at a conferencehosted by the American Enterprise Institute, a think tank based here."Anytime you keep score by looking at the number of kids who pass some
proficiency standard, that will shape whom teachers teach."


Education Week

Acceleration Under Review

As more high school students enroll in programs that award college credit,policymakers are asking questions about quality.

For years, only a handful of the highest achievers graduated from highschool with college courses on their transcripts. But as states strive toblur the line between high school graduation requirements and collegeexpectations, such dual-enrollment courses are quickly becoming part of abroader strategy to help more students become college-ready.

Over the past decade, much of the attention to dual enrollment has focusedon expansion and funding. Some individual programs-and increasingly,states-are working, however, to ensure that quality goes along with theproliferation. They want courses that are challenging enough to warrantcollege credit and that can effectively prepare students for highereducation.

"It's a real struggle. How do you expand access without diluting quality?"said Melinda Mechur Karp, a senior research associate at the CommunityCollege Research Center, based at Teachers College, Columbia University inNew York City.


Forwarded from David Bockoff

GLBT Clergy, Seminarians Come Out at Lutheran Assembly
by Kilian Melloy
EDGE Boston Contributor
Wednesday Aug 8, 2007

GLBT Lutheran clergy and seminarians came out en masse yesterday, singinghymns and handing out a devotional book that listed 80 seminarians andpastors whose status on the clergy roster has either been revoked, or is indanger of revocation.

The gay and lesbian seminarians and clergy were with the EvangelicalLutheran Church of America; their act of coming out was a bold move insupport of repealing church rules that forbid gay clergy to enjoy familystatus with a same-sex partner.

The act coincides with the Lutheran Church's national assembly, taking placeat Navy Pier this week, reported the Chicago Sun-Times today.

"We're raising awareness the Lutheran way," the pastor of St. Luke LutheranChurch of Logan Square, Erik Christensen.

Continued Christensen, "We're having sing-alongs and prayer services. All ofour tactics are attempts to create conversation."

Christensen's own story is included in the devotional, which was created bya number of groups working in tandem under the coalition name Goodsoil, withthe purpose of seeing a church policy requiring gay clergy to remaincelibate done away with.

The 33-year-old Christensen has been out and open about his sexuality sincecollege, according to the Sun-Times article, but that's not true of many ofthose who came out to church officials today.

Said Christensen, "A lot of these people came out at great risk."

Added Christensen, "There's anxiety and fear about losing their ministries,jobs, health benefits."

The church's assembly meets every two years. This year's meeting wasscheduled to address, among other business, the question of whom to electfor the next six-year term as Presiding Bishop. Assembly attendees yesterdaynamed sitting Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson to another term.

The ELCA comprises 65 regional districts called synods, and 4.8 millionmembers, according to the Sun-Times story. Almost one third of those 65synods support the repeal of the church policy requiring GLBT clergy toremain celibate.

Some synods actually offer overt approval to GLBT clergy in committedrelationships, in open defiance of church policy.

Rev. Paul Spring, a former bishop who heads up CORE--a Lutheran organizationopposed to lifting the ban--said, "The bishops who allow it should bedisciplined, but nobody wants to go after them."

Other bishops are frank in their disagreement with this. The Sun-Times saidthat Paul Landahl, the Chicago bishop, disagrees, and planned to attend aservice by Goodsoil today.

A definitive church policy on human sexuality, including the question of gayclergy and their need for family, is expected to be issued at the nextassembly meeting, in 2009. Even some supporters of GLBT clergy's familyrights would prefer to see the issue left alone until then.

But the question has been simmering for some time. At the last assemblymeeting, in 2005, a crowd of "silent witnesses" stood before the assembly toprotest the celibacy policy.

And earlier this year, an Atlanta congregation defied the ELCA, retainingtheir partnered gay pastor even after he was officially removed from theclergy rolls.

Kilian Melloy reviews media, conducts interviews, and writes commentary forEDGEBoston, where he also serves as Assistant Arts Editor.


Forwarded from David Bockoff

Lesbians win rights at YMCA
Associated Press
Wednesday Aug 8, 2007

A Des Moines lesbian couple say they've won their battle to be considered afamily by the Greater Des Moines YMCA.

M and Sandra Patton-Imani had filed a complaint with the city's human rightscommission when their YMCA family membership was revoked because they werenot considered a family. The couple now says they will sign an agreementwith the YMCA that changes the nonprofit organization's definition of familyfrom a heterosexual couple to include cohabiting adults.

The city commission in February ruled the YMCA's definition of family mayviolate a city ordinance that prohibits discrimination against gays.

YMCA officials initially said the couple was eligible for a "member plus"program that costs the same as a family membership. But the city of DesMoines decided that wasn't good enough and forced the YMCA to change itspolicy or lose a federal grant.


From Marc Adams - HeartStrong

We are very excited to be embarking on our 20th outreach trip. We beingthis trip Thursday evening and should arrive at our first destination innorthern California on Friday.

Our schedule of educational forums is on our site. We are still adding new forums so check backoften.

In the next week or so, the new HS website will also launch. This willalso include the new hBLOG talked about in our recent newsletter. We willsend an email when the site is up.

We still need your support. We have raised only about $3000.00 of the$10,000.00 needed for this trip which ends on December 18th.

You can make a difference. No gift is ever too small. In fact, most ofthe people who support this work sacrificially give only small amounts.We work diligently to make sure every dollar is stretched as far aspossible.

You may donate online at or you may also mailyour donation. You may just print the donation form from the websiteinstead of submitting it and then mail it to us at:
PO Box 2051
Seattle WA 98111

Thanks so much for your ongoing support. This 20th outreach trip is abenchmark for HeartStrong but it is only the beginning.

Marc Adams
Founder/Executive Director


Vienna competes with European capitals for gay tourists

Thursday, August 9, 2007
AFP News brief / France 24

Famous for its waltz, its cafes and its classical music, Vienna is pushingfor a bigger slice of the lucrative gay tourist trade this summer with its"Queer Guide" to the city.

The 48-page brochure, available free of charge in English, French andSpanish, lists all the capital's gay-friendly locations, from night clubs toshops, cafes, hotels, saunas, and nudist beaches on the Danube.

Although Austria was named preferred country of destination by participantsin Germany's Gay Pride parade in 2004, Vienna still lags far behind Paris,Berlin or Barcelona in a worldwide ranking of favourite destinations forgays and lesbians.

"Since then, the city has been trying to catch up," Susanne Langer, directorof the "Queer Guide" project which is in its second year, told AFP.


Forwarded from EuroQueer

South Africa: Lesbians Targeted for Murder

A Climate of Violent Homophobia Mars South Africa's Celebration of Women'sDay

(New York, August 9, 2007) - The recent brutal murders of three lesbiansshow that South Africa's constitutional promise of equal protection has yetto become a reality, Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to PresidentThabo Mbeki. As the country celebrates National Women's Day - the 51stanniversary of women's resistance to the apartheid-era pass systemrestricting free movement - a climate of violent homophobia and sexismdemands government action to make its commitment to equality and tolerance areality for the nation's gays and lesbians.

On July 8, the bodies of Sizakele Sigasa, age 34, and Salome Masooa, age 24,were found in a field in Meadowlands, Soweto. Sigasa had been shot sixtimes; Masooa had been shot once. Sigasa was openly lesbian and an activistfor the rights of people living with HIV/AIDS as well as lesbian, gay,bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people's rights. In another case, believedto be unrelated, the body of Thokozane Qwabe, age 23, was found in a fieldin Ladysmith, KwaZulu-Natal, on July 22. She had multiple head wounds andwas naked. Local nongovernmental organizations have informed Human RightsWatch that, based on how the bodies and clothing were found, they suspectrape in both cases.

"Despite legal commitments to equality for all, lesbians in South Africantownships are still targeted for rape and murder," said Jessica Stern,researcher in the LGBT Rights Program of Human Rights Watch. "Poverty,prejudice, homophobia and sexism are building a new pass system, where manywomen dare not walk openly on the street."


Forwarded from EuroQueer
From: SX News, 9 August, Sydney, Australia. Text of article follows.

Danger Zone

An amendment to the passport legislation to plug a loophole allowingsame-sex marriage compromises trans people's safety. Katrina Fox reports.

Two weeks ago, a pre-operative trans woman, Stefanie Imbruglia (singerNatalie's cousin), went to the Australian Passport Office in Sydney toobtain a temporary passport showing her sex as female, which would allow herto travel to Thailand for genital realignment surgery. She didn't anticipateany problems, since hundreds of trans people before her had successfullyapplied for and received such interim passports as a matter of course.However, in what she describes as a "twilight zone moment", things wentawry: she was subjected to a passport officer insisting on calling her 'Sir'when she was presenting as obviously female, and denied a passport thatreflects her gender identity.

"I handed my documentation across to him [and] almost immediately, hereferred to me as 'Sir', but the first two times, I thought I was justhearing things," Imbruglia recalls. "He then told me that I could not get apassport with the letter 'F. I asked to see where I couldn't in writing andhe went away for about five minutes or so."


Forwarded from EuroQueer

Australian Trans people Denied Passports by Minister for Foreign Affairs

The Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Alexander Downer in May 2007signed an order to stop many of the Australia's trans community fromobtaining a passport in the gender in which they live, unless they have hadgenital surgery.

This means that transsexual people in transition would have to travel aboardwith a passport of the opposite gender to which they are presenting or witha Document of Identity which states their name but does not disclose any sexor gender identity. This even applies to someone travelling overseas for theexpress purpose of completing their transsexual surgery (Breast surgery iscommon in Australia but genital surgery is often carried out outsideAustralia). Some intersex, transsexual or transsexed people cannot have anysurgery for medical reasons including heart condition, liver and kidneyproblems, cancer or AIDS or simply not being able to afford treatment.

Transgender people who do not want to have genital surgery will also nowhave to travel on a passport which will read the opposite sex and gender towhich they present or with a DOI which will make them stand out ie by nothaving a passport.


From ACLU - Anthony Romero

Democratic "leaders" have crossed the line and betrayed the will of themajority who put them in power in 2006. This week, a timid Congress caved into President Bush and his demand for more out-of-control authority to spy onAmericans.

The FISA gutting legislation voted on last weekend allows for massive,untargeted collection of Americans' international communications withoutcourt order. The law allows for no meaningful oversight by either Congressor the courts and leaves decisions about the collection, mining and use ofAmerican information up to the Bush Administration's Attorney General,Alberto Gonzales. Tell Congress you believe in the Constitution and demandthat it fix this legislation.

In short, instead of putting the brakes on the Bush Administration'scontinued and reckless abuse of power, Congress handed them more power toinvade our privacy and ignore our Constitutional rights.

And it never had to happen if leaders in the House and Senate had had thecourage to take a stand and say "no more" to the Bush administration.

We need you to stand with us and tell Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid andHouse Speaker Nancy Pelosi that we're sick and tired of Congress failing todefend freedom.

The ACLU is launching a major new campaign to hold Congress accountable. Butwe can't do it without you. Stand with us today as we send Senator Reid andSpeaker Pelosi a wake up call.

Tell Reid and Pelosi: "We Won't Let Congress Fail Freedom" by signing thepetition at


Oakland Park, Florida

AVER - Pool Party
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Admission $8.00 for members and $10.00 for guests. Admission includes:buffet and soft drinks.

There will be a CASH BAR with all your favorites.

Contact Dan or Dil @ 954-525-3372 for additional information.



Forwarded from EuroQueer

Gay marchers hope for peaceful parade

Aug 08, 2007
Joel Alas
The Baltic Times
original address:

TALLINN - Organizers of the 2007 Tallinn Pride gay parade said they werehoping to avoid a repeat of last year's violence-marred march.

About 500 people are expected to take part in the parade, which will windthrough Tallinn's Old Town from 3 p.m. on Aug. 11.

Tallinn Pride coordinator Lisette Kampus said she hoped police will take amore active role this time in protecting participants. In 2006 marchers werepelted with stones and eggs, and one Spanish man was treated in hospitalafter being physically assaulted.

Kampus said parade organizers have hired security guards for each paradesince 2004.

"The police here don't have an obligation to protect the freedom ofassembly, so we have hired a security company. We are concerned about safetyissues. We don't want this to be unpleasant for anybody, the participants orthe citizens who happen to pass by," Kampus said.


Forwarded from EuroQueer

Russian Orthodox Church calls for teaching of morals in school, deplores"ideology of science"

The Associated Press / International Herald Tribune
Wednesday, August 8, 2007

MOSCOW: A spokesman for the Orthodox Church said Wednesday that Russia'sschools should teach religious principles and moral values, and accused someof Russia's leading scientists of trying to impose the "ideology of science"on the school system.

The church spokesman, Father Vsevolod Chaplin, was rebutting a group ofprominent scientists who recently protested the church's growing influenceon Russian society.

Chaplin, in reply, urged teachers to instruct children not to follow thevicious examples of "homosexuals and prostitutes."

His remarks come after ten leading academics wrote to President VladimirPutin in late July to protest the introduction of a new class on OrthodoxChristian culture. The group also opposed an initiative to give Russianuniversities the power to award degrees in theology.


Forwarded from EuroQueer

Scientists keep moths in check by persuading males to be gay
Alan Hamilton

Moths tricked into thinking males are female to halt reproduction

When the early 19th-century scientist ThomasMalthus contemplated ways of reducing thepopulation before it outstripped the food supply,he considered infanticide, murder, contraception,starving the poor & and homosexuality. The latterhas been harnessed by present-day scientists tohalt an explosion, not of people, but of brown-tailed moths.

Moths and their larvae have multiplied in suchnumbers in some parts of the country recentlythat they have become a menace to people. Expertshave come up with the novel solution of trickingthe males of the species into thinking that they are gay.

Scientists are using a powder that spreads femalepheromones & the smell of sexual attraction & andconfuses the male moths, thus slowing thebreeding. The powder is left near breedinggrounds and, when larvae hatch, they are coatedin it. Other male moths are then temptednaturally to make contact with them, believingthem to be female. Moths have small brains and dreadful eyesight.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Seven Straight Nights for Equal Rights

Soulforce & Atticus Circle Announce Seven Straight Nights for Equal Rightsand Launch New Website to Galvanize Heterosexual Allies for Direct Action inOctober

Seven Straight Nights for Equal Rights
is a coordinated campaign of overnight vigils led by straight allies. Itwill sweep across cities and states throughout the nation during the week ofOctober 7-13, 2007.

The vigils are led by families, individuals, or groups, and focus on theirpersonal decision to speak out on behalf of LGBT equality. Depending on thestate, the leaders will either offer thanks for the state's positive policyrecord or issue a call to action on pertinent issues such as hate crimes,employment discrimination, and marriage equality.

The Seven Straight Nights website launches with the personal statements of10 state leaders and already several heterosexual allies from around thecountry have contacted us about the possibility of bringing Seven StraightNights to their state. If you would like to be part of this campaign and
organize a vigil in your state, please go to
this online form.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

[euro-queer] Time magazine: Curbing homophobia in reggae,8599,1650585,00.html

August 7, 2007
Curbing Homophobia in Reggae
By Christopher Thompson

Reggae was once associated with politically conscious lyrics, Rastafariansand the palm fringed shores of its native Jamaica. But forget Bob Marley andPeter Tosh singing about peace and love; these days some of reggae's biggestacts are just as likely to be advocating the killing of homosexuals in theirmusic.

And that has advocates like Britain's leading gay rights veteran PeterTatchell up in arms. A few years ago, along with Jamaican groups, Tatchelllaunched the Stop Murder Music campaign aimed at bringing the genre to heel.Tatchell has recently succeeded in convincing some of the most notoriouslyhomophobic figures in reggae and dancehall music to stop singing violentlyanti-gay lyrics like Jamaica-based artist Capleton's hit "More Prophet":"Shoulda know seh Capleton bun battyman [burn gays]/ Dem same fire apply todi lesbian/ All boogaman [gays] and sodomites fi get killed."

Buju Banton â?" whose smash hit from the 1990s "Boom Bye Bye" also advocatesthe shooting and burning of gay men â?" last week signed the "reggaecompassionate act" after a three-year campaign by Stop Murder Music. Banton,a Grammy-nominated artist who broke Bob Marley's record of most number onesingles in a year on the Jamaican charts, pledged to "respect" the rights ofgays to live without fear of violence.

He is the latest in a series of high-profile artists, including Beenie Manand Sizzla, to sign the declaration after worldwide protests from gay rightsgroups resulted in the cancellation of hundreds of concerts and sponsorshipdeals, costing the artists an estimated US$5 million. The news about Bantonwas welcomed by gay rights groups in Jamaica, where attacks on gay peopleare common and sodomy laws left over from Britain's colonial-era stillprohibit gay sex.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Straight GOP South Dakota politician comes out for gay rights

Please allow me the supreme pleasure of introducing you to former stateofficeholder Don Frankenfeld, a straight GOP politician from South Dakota.He's just come out for gay rights in a big way by joining the board of thatstate's leading LGBT advocacy organization.

Frankenfeld has written an insightful and honest, not to mention humorous,coming out column for the Hog House Blog, which is based in South Dakota andcovers politics from diverse perspectives.

I'd like to welcome this Super Hero costume-wearing man to theever-expanding community of allies for the LGBT community and look forwardto him using his political expertise and personal connections to benefit allcitizens of the Mount Rushmore state, regardless of sexual orientation.


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Sex Drive in Brain, Not Hormones, Study Suggests
Charles Q. Choi
Special to LiveScience

LiveScience.comTue Aug 7, 1:15 PM ET

Female mice apparently become as randy as males after their sense of smellgets tampered with, aggressively trying to mount any mouse that moves,research now reveals.

These findings open the question as to whether circuits for male behaviorexist dormant in females and vice versa elsewhere-including humans.

In many animals, the vomeronasal organ often helps detect scents. In mice,it especially helps detect [OU1]pheromones, molecules used to attract theopposite sex and to communicate other signals linked with social behavior,such as parenting or aggression. The organ is found in the noses ofpractically all land animals with a backbone, except humans and other higherprimates.


The Sun-Sentinel,0,5101449,print.story

A new theater for 'Some Men'
Forum Publishing Group
August 9, 2007

David Goldyn, creator of the Rising Action Theater Inc., said that the namefor his acting company came when he was teaching a theater class at BrowardCommunity College.

"I was describing the structure of the classical plays," Goldyn said."Exposition, rising action, inciting incident. That's a good name for atheater. That's exactly how it happened."

Goldyn has led a life drenched in theater. He majored in theater at New YorkUniversity, and soon became the artistic director of the Park ShakespeareCompany in New York and the Acting Studio Company in Orlando.

Within a few years, Goldyn was directing premieres in Los Angeles. Theater,he said, is all he ever wanted to do.

More than a year ago, Goldyn's Rising Action Theatre set up shop wherever itcould.


The Sun-Sentinel,0,1244385,print.story

By the numbers
August 9, 2007
The numbers

Bill Vayens has talked to hundreds of gay and lesbian Floridians about whothey support for president. The clear favorite is U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton,D-N.Y.

Vayens, who doesn't yet have a favorite of his own, is secretary of theFlorida Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Democratic Caucus. He has talkedto many of the people who participated in the group's ongoing straw poll atevents around the state this year.

Though the results aren't scientific, they are similar to whatscientifically conducted public opinion polls show of the generalpopulation: Clinton is the front-runner, followed by U.S. Sen. Barack Obama,D-Ill.

So far, 1,323 people have filled out surveys at seven Florida events thisyear, including festivals in Fort Lauderdale, Lake Worth and Wilton Manors.
The results are:

Clinton: 737 votes, 55.7 percent.

Obama: 269 votes, 20.3 percent.

Former U.S. Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C.: 118 votes, 8.9 percent.

Former Vice President Al Gore (2000 nominee; not declared as a 2008candidate): 91 votes, 6.9 percent.

Other: 108 votes, 8.2 percent.

- Staff Writer
Anthony Man


How you can tune in
August 9, 2007

How you can tune in

There are several ways to see what the Democratic presidential candidatessay during the first-ever televised forum on gay and lesbian issues.Tonight's event, sponsored by the Human Rights Campaign gay rights group,includes questions from journalists and from musician Melissa Etheridge.

On cable television: On the Logo cable channel, which is typically found onhigher-level packages of channels on cable television systems. The eventstarts at 9 p.m.

Online: The event will be streamed live on the Internet

At a forum-watching gathering: In Broward at Rosie's Bar and Grill, 2449Wilton Drive, Wilton Manors. In Palm Beach County, at The Cottage, 522Lucerne Ave., Lake Worth. Organizers of both events said they would beginabout 8:30 p.m.

Coverage of the event: on Friday.


Fort Lauderdale: Controversial mayor to co-host radio talk show
August 9, 2007

Mayor Jim Naugle will co-host a radio program Friday, taking thecontroversial debate about robotic toilets, gays, sex in public restroomsand, no doubt, other issues, to the airwaves.

Naugle will co-host Mitchell & Morley in the Morning with Kelley Mitchell on"News-Talk 850," (WFTL, AM 850)from 6 to 9 a.m. WFTL can also be heardonline at

Naugle stirred a public controversy last month with his comments about gays,whom he said he calls "homosexuals" because "they're not gay. They'reunhappy." He also said gays cruise public restrooms for sex, and that withthe high number of AIDS cases in Broward County, tourism officials shouldre-examine their invitation to gay visitors.

In a news release about Naugle's Friday fill-in, the station said it invitedNaugle's opponents, who formed a group called UNITE Fort Lauderdale, butthey have not agreed to go on air.


Naugle's attitude a danger to confused teens
August 9, 2007

Your article describing the warm-hearted Mayor Naugle and his supporters ofa simpler time in old Fort Lauderdale could turn dangerous for a young teenfacing issues regarding his own sexuality. As a psychiatrist with experiencein adolescents, I can assure you the statistic that a gay teen is two tothree times more likely to attempt suicide is true, and that more than 30percent of the estimated completed teen suicides are related to feelings ofhopelessness from same-sex feelings.

These statistics, originally done in 1996, have been repeated and thenumbers still ring true. Mr. Naugle, you and your attachment to degradinghomosexuality is a danger to youth. The last thing a confused child needs tohear is that his future as a gay male or female is to be unhappy.

To quote Dr. Erik Erikson, developmental psychologist, "Someday, maybe,there will exist a well-informed, well-considered, and yet fervent publicconviction that the most deadly of all possible sins is the mutilation of achild's spirit."

Mr. Mayor, words do hurt to a depth we cannot easily imagine. Please go backto selling paint. The results there will not be so permanent.

Grover Lawlis
Pompano Beach


Don't just apologize to the gay community
August 9, 2007
By John D. Siegfried

As a retired pediatrician and as the father of three children andgrandfather of five, I've always endorsed the disciplinary approach ofignoring bad behavior. When kids act up, the screaming, stamping andspanking adults frequently utilize to restore calm to their universeactually rewards misbehavior. The child has gotten what he/she wanted - yourattention.

But what do you do when the bad behavior isn't from a child, but from anadult who happens to be the mayor of the city in which you live? I'd love toignore his honor's bad behavior and wish it away, but local and nationalmedia coverage have precluded that option.

A number of South Florida Sun-Sentinel readers have written in support oropposition to Mayor Jim Naugle's vendetta against alleged men's room sex,casting the issue in terms of free speech. Without question, both sides havethe freedom to express their opinion. I don't, however, think the issue isfreedom of speech but rather responsibility of speech.

It's irresponsible for the mayor of this city, or any other city, to makeinflammatory remarks and false charges against one segment of the populationhe represents in order to express his personal bias, to pander to hispolitical constituency, or to insult voters for any reason. The fact isthere hasn't been an arrest for public restroom sex in Fort Lauderdale inthe past two and a half years. Furthermore, therapists familiar with theproblems of public sex have known for ages that most men's room sex involvesmarried men leading heterosexual lives.

A case in point was provided a few days after the mayor's initial tirade.Rep. Robert Allen, who is married and has two daughters, was arrested forallegedly soliciting sex from an undercover officer in a public restroom incentral Florida. With 71 escort services catering to both men and women inthe phone book and more than 100 massage services listed, of which many I'msure are legitimate, few men - gay or straight - need to resort to men'sroom sex.

Our mayor has created the specter of a problem via his bully pulpit where,in fact, none exists. Furthermore, the mayor's disingenuous apology to the"parents of our community for not being aware of the problem..." was athinly veiled way of showing more disrespect to the gay and lesbiancommunity.

The most regrettable feature of this sad charade is that Fort Lauderdale'simage as a vibrant, diverse cultural community has been deliberatelysullied. The hard work of Fort Lauderdale citizens to create that communityhas been callously disregarded by the elected official charged withpreserving and enhancing it. Whether this will have an economic backlash onlocal tourism may be impossible to quantify, but I've already had phonecalls and e-mails from friends in the Northeast asking, "What kind ofwhackos do you elect down there?"

The mayor does owe an apology, but not exclusively to the gay community. Heowes an apology to all the citizens of Fort Lauderdale for speakingirresponsibly and tarnishing the reputation of the city which many of ushave struggled to enhance.


Attitudes on gays in military shifting

The Pentagon and Congress have begun to soften their rhetoric on thecontroversial policy known as "don't ask, don't tell."
By Peter Spiegel and Joel Rubin
August 9, 2007

When Bill Clinton proposed dropping the ban on gays and lesbians servingopenly in the military, Army Gen. Colin L. Powell, then the chairman of theJoint Chiefs of Staff, was vehement in his opposition.

"The presence of homosexuals in the force would be detrimental to good orderand discipline for a variety of reasons, principally relating around theissue of privacy," Powell said in a January 1993 speech at the U.S. NavalAcademy, just days before Clinton took the oath of office.

Last month, the incoming Joint Chiefs chairman had a much more nuancedresponse when asked about the ban during his confirmation hearing. Navy Adm.Michael G. Mullen said that though he supported the current policy, he wasopen to having Congress debate whether it was still appropriate. "I'd loveto have Congress make its own decision with respect to that," Mullen said.

Subtly but unmistakably, rhetoric from the military and Congress has begunto soften on the controversial policy known as "don't ask, don't tell."Powell himself has changed his tune, acknowledging that attitudes haveshifted. A House bill that would lift the ban on gays serving openly hasgained support from military veterans in that chamber. And the pressures ofthe Iraq war and the 2008 presidential campaign have focused more attentionon the merits of a repeal.

At a forum tonight for Democratic presidential candidates, the ban isexpected to get its most thorough examination since 1993. The event,cosponsored by the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights organization, will beheld in front of about 200 invited guests at a Hollywood video productionfacility.


Sex in public is the real problem
August 9, 2007

Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle needs to research the law and find one thatdoes not allow for sex in public bathrooms, regardless of gender. I alwaysthought that law was called "indecency."

The mayor did not go on a hunt for heterosexuals having sex in public. Ourworld has had centuries of it. I am for none of it in public.

If you could see the lobbies of college women's dorms on any Friday orSaturday night, dates are all over each other on the couches. The studentsthink it is OK to come in after a date, walk through them all and go totheir dorm rooms.

And we know about automobiles in drive-ins, don't we? Pretty close quarterswhen children walk through them on the way to the concession stand.

So the mayor's gripe seems prejudicial against homosexuals, but not anybodyelse. That is an American no-no and an ethical no-no. It is just plainhypocritical.


Democrats to Court Gay Voters at Forum
Most of the Democratic hopefuls will participate in the nation's firstpresidential forum devoted solely to lesbian and gay issues. Why they'recourting a small, but important, voting bloc.

By Kendyl Salcito
Updated: 5:03 p.m. ET Aug 4, 2007

Aug. 5, 2007 - In a crowded primary field, every vote counts. So it'sprobably not surprising that six of the eight Democratic presidentialcontenders for 2008 plan to participate in the first debate devoted entirelyto gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues on Aug. 9 in Los Angeles.(Senators Joe Biden and Chris Dodd declined to attend, citing schedulingconflicts) Still, the event's sponsors, the Human Rights Campaign and Viacom's Logo cable TV network, are touting the event as an historic opportunity forthe gay community to raise its issues on a national stage. The forum,moderated by Margaret Carlson of Bloomberg News, will run from 9-11 p.m. ETon Logo and (The sponsors say they invited GOP candidates toparticipate in their own gay debate, but that none signed on.)

While gay and lesbian voters have largely been a reliable voting bloc forDemocrats at least since the '80s, some activists say their community istaken for granted by the party. Privately, political strategists saycandidates walk a fine line between being progressive on gay issues andpossibly alienating some conservative voters, including some Democrats.NEWSWEEK's Kendyl Salcito spoke with John D'Emilio, a historian of gayhistory and professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, about theupcoming event. Excerpts:

NEWSWEEK: How significant is this event?
John D'Emilio: Since the Mondale campaign in 1984, the Democratic Party atthe national level has not had a great deal of trouble speaking about gayissues and speaking to gay audiences. They've done that with a great deal fconsistency. So in this view the debate is one more, small step in a paththat's really been carved out for more than 20 years. The party has had muchmore difficulty at the national level in delivering anything. They love totalk about gay issues and to welcome gay constituents into the fold, butthey just haven't provided very much concretely. Maybe that's because sincethe '80s there have been only very short periods when there's been both aDemocratic president and Democratic control of both houses [of Congress].

What issues will be central in this forum?
Inevitably, in the year 2007 the issue of marriage is going to come up, andit would not surprise me at all if the debate gets hijacked by that issue,because that's where [the Democratic candidates] have the most difficulty. Ithink that there are four issues that are probably key for the comingelection: The issue of hate crimes, including crimes based on sexualorientation, in federal statutes; an anti-discrimination act includingsexual orientation in the general civil rights legislation; "don't ask, don't tell," which technically is something that just the president could deliveron with an executive order; and same-sex marriage. Clinton, for example,issued an executive order against discrimination of [gay] federal employees,and he distributed federal grant money for studies of gay and lesbianhealth.


Activists: Rudy has done more for gay rights than any candidate
9:04 PM EDT, August 8, 2007


Twenty-five years ago, long before Rudy Giuliani became mayor of New YorkCity, he made a decision that advanced the cause of gay rights nationally.

As the Justice Department's number three official in 1982, Giulianiauthorized the hiring of the first openly gay lawyer for a prosecutor postrequiring a security clearance, according to records and interviews.

That precedent-setting but little-known action, combined with his successfulpush as mayor for domestic partnership and hate crime laws in New York, makeGiuliani an anomaly: a front-runner for the GOP nomination who is a topchampion of gay rights.

Like the other Republicans in the race, Giuliani will not be taking part intonight's presidential debate on gay issues. But he still has done more toadvance gay rights than just about any of the Democrats who will
participate, gay activists said.

"Rudy Giuliani is near the top of the list," said Matt Foreman, head of theNational Gay and Lesbian Task Force, who was an activist in New York whenGiuliani was mayor.


August 09, 2007
Russian church: School must teach morals

A Russian Orthodox Church spokesman said Wednesday that the country'sschools should teach religious principles and moral values, and he accusedsome leading scientists of trying to impose the ''ideology of science'' onthe education system.

Father Vsevolod Chaplin was responding to a group of prominent scientistswho recently protested the church's growing influence on society.

Chaplin urged teachers to instruct children not to follow the examples of''homosexuals and prostitutes.''

His remarks come after 10 leading academics wrote to President VladimirPutin last month to protest the introduction of a class on OrthodoxChristian culture. The group also opposed an initiative to give universitiesthe power to award degrees in theology.

''The scientific viewpoint cannot be a state ideology,'' Chaplin toldjournalists at a discussion between clerics and scientists. ''It never madeanybody happy and failed to answer fundamental questions of humanexistence.''


The Advocate

August 09, 2007
Phelps church to protest Minnesota bridge collapse funerals

Fred Phelps, leader of the maliciously antigay Westboro Baptist Church ofTopeka, Kan., Is slated to picket funerals for victims of the Interstate35-West bridge that collapsed in Minneapolis.

According to a flier posted on the church's Web site,, theprotests, or "love crusades" as they are called, will begin Wednesday withthe funeral of Sherry Lou Engebretsen.

Shirley Phelps-Roper, daughter of Fred Phelps and church attorney, said thatGod has turned his back on America and Minnesota for its tolerance of LGBTpeople, according to the Twin Cities Daily Planet Web site.

"The bridge stood in place by the word of God and it fell by the word ofGod," she said in the article. "Each of these little events is just aharbinger of the coming destruction of this American experiment. We aredelivering the final call of the doomed nation." (The Advocate)


August 09, 2007
Singapore park forbids gay rights picnic

Singapore barred a gay rights group Wednesday from holding a picnic and funrun at a popular park, saying politics is not welcome in the country's greenspaces.

Gay rights group People Like Us had planned a picnic at the downtown BotanicGardens on Thursday and a five-kilometer run the following day as part of aseries of activities marking gay and lesbian pride month.

The National Parks Board wrote to the events' organizer, Alex Au, to say theactivities were not permitted by authorities, Au said.

''The Singapore Botanic Gardens is a premier botanical institution. We donot want it to be used as a venue for interest groups to politicize theircause,'' a board spokesman said in an e-mailed response to questions.

Established in 1859, the128-acre Botanic Gardens is a popular touristattraction and venue for picnics, jogs, and outdoor concerts. The parkfeatures more than 10,000 types of plants.


August 09, 2007
Gays more likely to vote than straights

Gays and lesbians turned out to vote in the 2004 national election at a ratenearly double that of the national electorate in certain cases, according toa study released by San Francisco-based Community Marketing.

Ninety-two percent of eligible gay men and 91% of lesbians cast their ballotin the last presidential election. The number dropped off a bit for the lastmidterm election: 84% of gays and 78%of lesbians voted in 2006. The studydid not mention partisanship voting patterns.

Conversely, the Study of the American Electorate stated that 61% of alleligible Americans turned out for the 2004 election, while 40% voted in2006.

The figures "demonstrate...that the political parties would be smart to payattention to the issues that mean the most to gay and lesbian voters," TomRoth, president of Community Marketing, said in an article on the LosAngeles Times blog Top of the Ticket. "We have far more at stake than theaverage voter, and we're therefore far more engaged in the politicalprocess." (The Advocate)


August 09, 2007
Same-sex marriage a dilemma as Dems prepare for forum on gay issues

The gay rights movement reaches a milestone Thursday when its agenda is thesubject of a televised Democratic presidential forum. Yet manyactivists-craving bolder support for same-sex couples-view the unprecedentedevent with mixed emotions.

Though pleased that most of the candidates of a major party are courtingtheir votes and endorsing the bulk of their political wish list, they arefrustrated that none of the front-runners is calling for legalization ofsame-sex marriage.

The forum, to be held in Los Angeles, is cosponsored by the Human RightsCampaign, a gay rights group that has become increasingly influential inDemocratic politics, and by Logo, the gay-oriented cable channel that willprovide a live telecast and Internet simulcast. Every Democratic candidateexcept Joe Biden and Chris Dodd plans to participate.

Human Rights Campaign president Joe Solmonese will serve as a panelist,along with singer Melissa Etheridge and Washington Post editorial writerJonathan Capehart.

''I hope we can get genuinely heartfelt answers,'' said Solmonese, who wantsthe leading candidates to explain why they remain wary of same-sex marriage.


US Democrats in gay rights spotlight
By Laura Smith-Spark
BBC News, Washington

Gay marriage, homosexuality in the military, Aids policy and hate crimes areto be the focus of the latest US presidential debate.For the first time, contenders for the White House are taking part in a livetelevised discussion devoted solely to gay and lesbian issues.

Backed by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), a leading US gay rights advocacygroup, it will be broadcast on gay-orientated cable network Logo andstreamed live on the internet.

Although candidates from both parties were invited, only the Democratsresponded positively, the HRC says, so a corresponding event will not bestaged for their Republican counterparts.

The Los Angeles forum could prove a political minefield in a nation wheregay rights issues continue to polarise many people, as witnessed in the 2004presidential elections.


Gay-rights backing not a help to candidates
Ohio voters turned off by some groups, university poll finds
Thursday, August 9, 2007 7:10 AM
By Darrel Rowland


As the leading Democratic presidential hopefuls preparetheir pitches for tonight's unprecedented forum with gay-rights groups, anew poll shows that many Ohio voters are less likely to support candidatesbacked by such organizations.

More than a third view the support of gay-rights groups as a negative indeciding among the White House hopefuls, a Quinnipiac University pollreleased yesterday found. The same is true for voters in two other keypresidential battlegrounds -- Florida and Pennsylvania -- although themargins there are smaller.

Just 10 percent of Ohioans said gay backing would increase their chance ofsupporting a presidential candidate, while 54 percent said it wouldn't makea difference.

"In Ohio, a gay endorsement appears to cost a candidate more votes than itgets," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Connecticut university'spolling institute.

He noted that 26 percent of Democrats said they'd be more likely to voteagainst gay-backed candidates, while 13 percent said such backing would wintheir support.

"In a state like Ohio, where there is the expectation that the presidentialelection may be decided, and the last two elections have been close, you'retalking about a lot of voters here represented by these numbers," Brownsaid.


Bodiford appears isolated at contentious GLCC meeting
Most in audience reject her argument regarding trans amendment

Aug. 09, 2007

On Wednesday, Aug. 1, local gay rights attorney Robin Bodiford presided overa contentious and raucous meeting at the Gay & Lesbian Community Center ofSouth Florida regarding the transgendered issue.

At the meeting, Bodiford, who played a key role in adding sexual orientationprotections to the Broward County Human Rights Ordinance in 1995, made theargument that activists should wait until May 2008 to move forward withamending the ordinance to include "gender identity and expression," whichwould protect transgendered people from discrimination. Bodiford contendedthat amending the ordinance now could cause a backlash that could lead to aright-wing ballot initiative. That could cause the entire ordinance to beoverturned, including the protections for sexual orientation, she argued.She said by waiting until May 2008, it would ensure that right-wingopponents could not get an initiative on the ballot until 2010.

Bodiford called the meeting to explain her position, and she paid to rentthe space for it at the GLCC. But the overwhelming majority of those whoattended the meeting disagreed with her.

"You have silenced the transgendered community for too long!" shoutedMichael Rajner, a local activist and the national secretary of the Campaignto End AIDS.

"[Waiting to amend the ordinance] gives the opposition more time to preparetoo," said Victoria Michaels, a transgendered woman who lives in WiltonManors.


Two gay men assaulted and robbed in Wilton Manors
Muggers asked victims if they were 'straight' before attacking
Aug. 09, 2007

Two local gay men were jumped and robbed on July 19 by four suspects whoapproached them on bicycles and asked them if they were straight beforeassaulting them, according to a police report filed with the Wilton ManorsPolice Department. Police have arrested a juvenile who allegedly took partin the attack.

Arthur "Butch" Davison and John Fantom, who live in Wilton Manors, werewalking home from Sidelines bar when the attack occurred. They were walkingnorth on NE 5th Avenue between NE 23rd Street and NE 22nd Street when fourblack males approached them and asked them if they were straight. Fantomtold them they were not straight and to leave them alone, the police reportsays. At that point, the four males dismounted their bikes and attackedDavison and Fantom, "using their hands, fists and feet to strike themmultiple times," the report says.

When police arrived, Davison was "bleeding excessively from the nose" andhis jeans were "torn in the back from the pockets down to the middle of histhighs," the report says.

The muggers took Fantom's wallet, which contained $700, and his cell phone.
They took Davison's gold chain and cell phone.

Davision said he suffered a gash in his head, damaged cartilage in his noseand a cracked rib. He said his teeth are also numb and have to be fixed. Hesaid Fantom did not suffer any injuries.


County Slaps Fort Lauderdale Mayor Over Anti-Gay Remarks
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 8, 2007 - 1:00 pm ET

(Fort Lauderdale, Florida) Broward County commissioners have launched ablistering attack on Fort Lauderdale mayor Jim Naugle (pictured) over aseries of homophobic comments made by Naugle but stopped just short ofpassing a motion to censure him.

Commissioners called the outspoken Mayor bigoted and said his remarks weredespicable, but even had they officially censured him it would have noeffect. Although Fort Lauderdale is within the county, as a separate citywith its own council the county can exercise no control over the resort townor its politicians.

But as concerns mount of a possible tourist boycott the commissioners saidthey want the worldwide LGBT community to know they disagree with Naugle.County Mayor Josephus Eggelletion and all 9 commissioners signed a lettervoicing their support for gays.

Fort Lauderdale ranked No. 6 among gay travelers last year, and accountedfor about 11 percent of Broward's $8.5 billion tourism industry.

So concerned is the tourism industry over the potential fallout the GreaterFort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau is using paid media watchers inNew York and Europe to see how far the story is spreading.


Alarm Sounded Over Rights Violations In Honduras, Guatemala
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 8, 2007 - 3:00 pm ET

(New York City) The level of threats, intimidation, attacks and killings ofhuman activists in Honduras and Guatemala is reaching "worrying proportions"Amnesty International said in a new report issued on Wednesday.

The report - Persecution and Resistance: The experience of human rightsdefenders in Guatemala and Honduras - exposes a systematic pattern ofattacks against those who defend the rights of marginalized communities,including indigenous peoples and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgenderpeople.

"Those who protect others from suffering human rights violations end upsuffering abuses themselves. The insecurity of human rights activists inHonduras and In Guatemala is reaching worrying proportions," said Susan Lee,the Director of Amnesty International's Americas Program.

"'Threats, intimidation, unfounded criminal charges and killings ofactivists in Honduras and Guatemala are designed to stop them fromprotecting people's rights, particularly when their work goes againstpowerful economic interests,' said Lee.

The 32-page report documents what it says is a series of cases whereactivists whose rights have been seriously violated, and have not been ableto bring their perpetrators to justice.


Canada OKs Generic AIDS Drug For Export
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 8, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Toronto, Ontario) A generic pharmaceutical company has permission toproduce the first HIV-AIDS drugs under Canada's three-year-old Access toMedicines Regime.

GlaxoSmithKline has given consent for Apotex to make an antiretroviralmedication for the treatment of HIV-AIDS patients in Rwanda.

Consent was needed because GSK has patent rights for two molecules containedin the medication.

The 2004 Access to Medicines program enables the federal government toauthorize production of certain patented medicines for export to countriesdesperate for drugs to help control the pandemic.

But the program has been criticized by AIDS activists because not one pillhas been exported since its inception.


Russian Orthodox Church Says Show Students Only 'Unhappy Homosexuals' ToSave Country
by The Associated Press
Posted: August 8, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Moscow) Russia's schools should teach religious principles and moralvalues, a spokesman for the Orthodox Church said Wednesday.

The spokesman, Father Vsevolod Chaplin, also accused some of Russia'sleading scientists of trying to impose the ``ideology of science'' on theschool system.

Chaplin was rebutting a group of prominent scientists who recently protestedthe church's growing influence on Russian society.

Chaplin, in reply, urged teachers to instruct children not to follow thevicious examples of `` homosexuals and prostitutes.''

His remarks come after ten leading academics wrote to President VladimirPutin in late July to protest the introduction of a new class on OrthodoxChristian culture. The group also opposed an initiative to give Russianuniversities the power to award degrees in theology.


Australian PM Chastised By Own Party Member Over Gay Unions Stand
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 8, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Sydney, Australia) A member of John Howard's governing Liberal party hasfallen out with the Prime Minister over his opposition to any recognition ofsame-sex couples in Australia.

Warren Entsch, a Member of Parliament from Queensland, says he will handHoward a petition signed by 25,000 people calling for an end todiscrimination against gay and lesbian couples.

The petition was gathered online by the LGBT rights group Get Up!

A second copy will be given to Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd.

"Same-sex couples should have the same legal rights as de facto heterosexualcouples," the petition reads. "I call upon you to make this first steptowards equality by immediately legislating to end discrimination againstsame-sex couples."


Not Even An Official Candidate Thompson Taps Third Campaign Manager
by The Associated Press
Posted: August 9, 2007 - 9:00 am ET

(Washington) Fred Thompson on Wednesday tapped the man he credits withsaving his 1994 Senate campaign to take over his likely presidential bid.

Bill Lacy, a former strategist for Ronald Reagan, Bob Dole and RepublicanNational Committee, will run day-to-day operations of Thompson's committeeto "test the waters" for a presidential run.

"He turned around my campaign for Senate in 1994 and, as I move toward adecision on whether to run for president, I am confident he will take ouroperations to the next level," Thompson, the former Tennessee senator and"Law & Order" actor, said in a statement.

"I'm here for the long haul," Lacy said in an interview from the committee'sheadquarters in a Virginia suburb. He said he has taken a leave of absencefrom his current post as the director of the Dole Institute of Politics atthe University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kan.

Thompson is expected to officially enter the race Labor Day week, and isshowing strongly in national polls and surveys in several early primarystates. But a certain measure of turmoil has hit his preliminary campaignthis summer.


The New York Times

August 9, 2007
First Father: Tough Times on Sidelines

WASHINGTON, Aug. 8 - There are times in the life of George Herbert WalkerBush, the 41st president of the United States and father of the 43rd, thatpeople, perfect strangers, come up to him and say the harshest things -words intended to comfort but words that wind up only causing pain.

"I love you, sir, but your son's way off base here," they might say,according to Ron Kaufman, a longtime adviser to Mr. Bush, who has witnessedany number of such encounters - perhaps at a political fund-raiser, or arestaurant dinner, a chance meeting on the streets of Houston orKennebunkport, Me. They are, he says, just one way the presidency of the sonhas taken a toll on the father.

"It wears on his heart," Mr. Kaufman said, "and his soul."

These are distressing days for the Bush family patriarch, only the secondformer president in American history, after John Adams, to see his son takethe White House.


The New York Time

August 9, 2007
Amicably Split, and Still Sharing

FOR two people who might, in the society Mitchell Gold has been lobbying tocreate, be just another divorced couple, Mr. Gold and Bob Williams appear toget along exceptionally well. The men continue to run the furniture companythat bears their names, and occasionally they even double-date, as they didlast month at the Los Angeles wedding of Sarah Gore, the youngest daughterof Al and Tipper. They have even bought a pied-à-terre together in a newlybuilt Manhattan tower (actually two apartments they combined) with a180-degree view of the city from the 58th floor: the Hudson River to thewest, the Statue of Liberty to the south, Times Square to the east. It is aview that dazzles, and Mr. Gold, an outgoing and down-to-earth man whosefather was a grocer, appreciates it.

"It took me 30 years to get this view," he says.

Today, he and Mr. Williams are so successful that their designs are carriedin 80 stores across the country. In New York, they have a space at ABCCarpet and Home and will be opening a store in SoHo in September.


The New York Time

August 8, 2007
Gay Endorsements Have Scant Impact on U.S. Voters
Filed at 11:27 a.m. ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - It does not matter to most voters in three key U.S.states whether a presidential candidate has the backing of gay rightsgroups, according to a new poll on Wednesday.

Ahead of a Thursday night debate for Democrats in Los Angeles devoted to gayissues, Quinnipiac University's Swing State Poll asked about the impact ofcampaign endorsements by gay groups on voters in Florida, Ohio and

In Ohio, 54 percent say such endorsements make no difference, while 34
percent said it would make them less likely to support a candidate and 10percent said it would make them more likely to back a campaign.

The numbers were similar for Pennsylvania and Florida.

At the same time an endorsement by a labor union was an overall positive inall three states.

"Being perceived as the candidate of gay rights turns off more voters thanit attracts, although in general being considered the candidate of a specialinterest group seems to be a political loser," said Peter Brown, assistantdirector of Quinnipiac's polling unit.


The New York Time

August 9, 2007
The Misery Strategy

The path the country has set on since the defeat of immigration reform inthe Senate in June enshrines enforcement and punishment above all else. Itis narrow, shortsighted, disruptive and self-defeating. On top of that, itwon't work.

What it will do is unleash a flood of misery upon millions of illegalimmigrants. For the ideologues who have pushed the nation into thisposition, that is more than nough reason to plunge ahead.

The latest phase of the crackdown, expected to be announced this week, wouldrequire employers to resolve discrepancies between their employee recordsand those of the Social Security Administration. If the data don't match,presumably because a worker is an illegal immigrant using a false number,the worker must be fired. There are millions of people in thousands ofworkplaces who could be caught in that net, and the government is promisingto start dragging it zealously, with stepped-up raids around the country."We are tough, and we are going to be even tougher," said a spokesman forthe Department of Homeland Security.


The Washington Post

Admiral Scapegoat
By Robert D. Novak
Thursday, August 9, 2007; Page A17

A sadder but wiser Vice Admiral J.M. "Mike" McConnell, director of nationalintelligence (DNI), told a senior Republican House member last weekend thatthe next time he dealt with congressional Democrats he would make sure aRepublican was in the room or on the phone. After a lifetime navigating themurky waters of intelligence, McConnell at age 64 was ill-prepared for thestormy seas of Capitol Hill.

Late Saturday, the Democratic-controlled Congress passed a bill that isanathema to the party's base: authorization of eavesdropping on suspectedterrorist conversations without a court warrant. It passed because Democratscould not take the political risk of going home for the August recess havingshut down U.S. surveillance of threats to the country. But since they couldnot blame themselves, they blamed the nonpolitical DNI.


The Miami Herald

Posted on Wed, Aug. 08, 2007
Polls in houses of worship don't violate Constitution, judge says

Polling sites located within houses of worship do not violate theconstitutional separation of church and state, a federal judge ruled.Jerry Rabinowitz, of Delray Beach, a nonobservant Jew whose voting precinctis in a Catholic church, sued Palm Beach County Elections Supervisor ArthurAnderson in December. He claimed that casting a ballot amid crucifixes andother religious features amounted to a breach of church-state separation.

Rabinowitz argued that elections officials refused to remove or coverreligious materials at Emmanuel Catholic Church when he voted there inNovember.

U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks ruled against Rabinowitz last week,noting that the Anderson's "practice has a secular purpose, it does not havethe effect of endorsing religion, and it does not create an excessiveentanglement between the Church and the state."


St. Petersburg Times

To win Florida, Clinton looks north
The ex-president boosts his wife's campaign in the GOP-dominated part of thestate.
By JENNIFER LIBERTO, Times Staff Writer
Published August 9, 2007

DESTIN -- Dueling bumper stickers touting Barack Obama and Hillary RodhamClinton adorn Jimmy Bobo's red 2006 Ford Explorer, which he drove Monday toa political rally deep in Republican-dominated Okaloosa County.

The retired Air Force master sergeant, who hasn't decided whom he'ssupporting for president, loves President Bill Clinton, the headliner Mondayat a beachfront fundraiser for Sen. Clinton. Bobo also likes Sen. Clinton,but he said Republicans in the Panhandle, and even some Democrats, tend tosay nasty things about her.

"I've got to think it's just the more conservative types who rub off onother folks," said Bobo, 57, who works for the local school district.

North Florida may be Republican country, but past elections dictate thatDemocrats who want to win statewide need at least to do well in NorthFlorida and the Panhandle. Democrats who get clobbered from Pensacola toJacksonville can't win Florida, political analysts say.

This could be bad news for Sen. Clinton.


Palm Beach Post

Poll shows Clinton, Giuliani neck-and-neck in Florida
Palm Beach Post Washington Bureau
Thursday, August 09, 2007

WASHINGTON - Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and former New York City Mayor RudyGiuliani are in a virtual tie among Florida voters, with Clinton inchingahead, according to a poll released Wednesday.

Clinton leads Giuliani 46 percent to 44 percent in the weeklong survey theQuinnipiac University Polling Institute completed Monday. That's a flip fromthe 46-44 Giuliani lead the poll showed two weeks ago.

Video:Poll results

Breaking out the ratings

Here are the favorability ratings for some presidential candidates,according to a Quinnipiac University Polling Institute released Wednesday.The first number is the percentage of Florida voters with the favorableopinion of a candidate and the second is that with an unfavorable opinion.

Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y.: 50 percent-42 percent

Former N.Y. Mayor Rudy Giuliani, R: 53 percent-26 percent


The Miami Herald

by Steve Rothaus
Democratic candidates forum Thursday to address gay rights
BY DAVID CRARY, Associated Press

The gay-rights movement reaches a milestone Thursday when its agenda is thesubject of a televised Democratic presidential forum. Yet many activists -craving bolder support for same-sex couples - view the unprecedented eventwith mixed emotions.

Though pleased that all the candidates of a major party are courting theirvotes and endorsing the bulk of their political wish-list, they arefrustrated that none of the front-runners is calling for legalization of gaymarriage.

The forum, to be held in Los Angeles, is co-sponsored by the Human RightsCampaign, a gay-rights group that has become increasingly influential inDemocratic politics, and by Logo, the gay-oriented cable channel that willprovide a live telecast and Internet simulcast. Every Democratic candidateexcept Joe Biden and Chris Dodd plans to participate.

Human Rights Campaign president Joe Solmonese will serve as a panelist,along with singer Melissa Etheridge and Washington Post editorial writerJonathan Capehart.


Orlando Sentinel,0,3571174.story
Attorney: Allen won't resign in sex case
Rep. Bob Allen insists he's innocent of solicitation and says an undercoverofficer in the park did the asking.
Laurin Sellers
Sentinel Staff Writer
August 9, 2007


Embattled state Rep. Bob Allen, who has been vilified by computer bloggersand lampooned on late-night talk shows since his arrest on a charge ofsoliciting prostitution, is not a criminal or a racist and has no plans toresign, his attorney said Wednesday.

"Based on the police officer's own report, this case should be dismissed,"said attorney Greg Eisenmenger, adding that he would file a motion fordismissal. "The officer did all the soliciting."

Allen's arrest July 11 outside a bathroom in a public park made headlines,but the release days later of his taped statement to police and otherdocuments created a furor. Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio said in astatement Wednesday that Allen's remarks were "disturbing."


Rubio: Allen's post-arrest comments 'disturbing'

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Rep. Bob Allen's post-arrest comments, including arecorded statement that he felt intimidated by black undercover officers,are "disturbing," Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio said Wednesday.

A police report also said Allen, R-Merritt Island, asked if his position asa legislator would "help" after he was charged with offering an undercoverofficer $20 to perform oral sex July 11 at a Titusville park.

Allen, 48, is charged with misdemeanor solicitation for prostitution. He hasdenied the charge.

"The recent release of Rep. Bob Allen's post-arrest statements injects a newand very disturbing element to an already troubling incident," Rubio, R-WestMiami, said in a statement issued from Boston, where he is attending anational meeting of state legislators.



South Florida
New Fla. law will brand teens as sex offenders for life
By Tim Collie
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
August 9, 2007

Young teens convicted of sex crimes behind the closed doors of juvenilecourt will now end up on the state's public registry of sex offenders.

A state law that went into effect July 1 will list teens as young as 14 onthe same Web site as adults who are convicted pedophiles and sexualpredators. The designation will follow them and their families as they enterschools, move to new communities and eventually apply for colleges, tradeschools and jobs.

Some public defenders and legal experts describe the law as revolutionarybecause it makes public the actions of juvenile court. They say it mayhinder rehabilitation of those who commit relatively minor offenses bypublicly labeling them as sex offenders. Public defenders plan to challengethe law, saying it sentences juveniles as adults without allowing jurytrials.

And some specialists in the field say parents, often the first to learn ofteens' sex crimes, may be reluctant to seek help for their children if theywill be labeled and their families' homes identified on the sex offenderlist.

"Their names, their home address, and other information are going to bethere for the public to see," said Jan Abee, who is helping the Departmentof Juvenile Justice carry out the law. "That means a lot for their families,too, because they'll be living at the same address."


New Albany Tribune - NY
UPDATE: Murphy resigns political posts; cooperating with police in apparent criminal investigation

- The chairman of the Clark County Republican Party - who last month was elected president of the Young Republican National Federation - has resigned both posts, apparently in the wake of a criminal investigation.

On Tuesday afternoon, Glenn Murphy Jr. e-mailed media outlets a letter announcing his resignation from both positions, citing an unexpected business opportunity that would prohibit him from holding a partisan political office.

However, the Clark County Sheriff's Department on Friday began investigating Murphy for alleged criminal deviate conduct - potentially a class B felony - after speaking with a 22-year-old man who claimed that on July 31, Murphy performed an unwanted sex act on him while the man slept in a relative's Jeffersonville home.

Murphy, a 33-year-old Utica resident, has not been arrested nor has he been charged with a crime. A copy of the police report has been posted on an politically focused Internet site and another was provided to a reporter with The Evening News and The Tribune on Tuesday evening.Larry Wilder, Murphy's attorney, said Murphy is cooperating with police and rosecutor Steve Stewart. Wilder said Murphy contends the sex act was consensual.

A reporter was unable to reach Stewart on Tuesday evening.

In 1998, a 21-year-old male filed a similar report with Clarksville police claiming Murphy attempted to perform a sex act on him while he was sleeping. Charges were never filed in that case.

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