Monday, September 10, 2007

GLBT DIGEST September 10, 2007

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


Broward Introduction to Florida Red And Blue!!!!

Do your part to fight the right-wing state-wide anti-gay initiativeto amend the Florida constitution.

Friday, September 28, at the GLCC, Ft. Lauderdale - 11:45am to 1:30pm.

Michael and I promised to get a minimum of 10 people to attend thislow dollar boxed lunch - only $25 - to learn about Florida Red And Blue andthe multiple efforts to overcome this hateful amendment. Florida Red andBlue has already raised over $1 million, but our work is only beginning.

Will you support us with this? Every GLBT person in Florida needs to be apart of this effort.

Boxed Lunch Series
Friday, September 28
Noon - 1:30pm
Networking 11:45am
GLCC - Ft. Lauderdale

Send us an e-mail and let us know if you'll join us on the 28th.

And...... If you can't attend, we'll be glad to accept your check made outto "Florida Red and Blue."

Ray and Michael


Israel busts neo-Nazi ring
Suspects came from former Soviet Union

The Associated Press
September 10, 2007

Police said Sunday they have broken up a cell of young Israeli neo-Nazisaccused of a string of brutal racist and anti-Semitic attacks, videos ofwhich were played on television to a stunned national audience.

The eight suspects, all immigrants from the former Soviet Union in theirlate teens or early 20s, are seen in the videos kicking victims on theground to a bloody pulp, hitting a man over the head with an empty beerbottle and proclaiming their allegiance to Adolf Hitler with a Nazi salute.

Sixty years after the Nazi Holocaust killed 6 million Jews, incidents ofanti-Semitism continue to outrage Israelis and the discovery of suchviolence in their own country dominated morning radio shows and made thefront pages of newspapers with headlines such as "Unbelievable."

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who viewed the footage with his ministers at theweekly Cabinet meeting, called it "violence for the sake of violence."

"I am sure that there is not a person in Israel who can remain indifferentto these scenes, which indicate that we too as a society have failed in theeducation of these youths," he said.


Jamaica: Still Bigoted Towards Gays
Jamaica's intolerant attitude toward gays runs counter to its unofficial
motto, 'No problem, mon.'

By Joe Contreras
Newsweek International
Updated: 5:52 p.m. ET Sept 7, 2007

Sept. 8, 2007 - While governments in a number of Latin American countriesand elsewhere begin to recognize the legal rights of same-sex partners,Jamaica is bolstering its image as one of the most virulently anti-gaysocieties in the Western Hemisphere. Between February and July of this year,98 gay men and lesbians were targeted in 43 different mob attacks, accordingto the Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays. Four lesbians wereraped, four gay men were murdered, and the houses of two gay men were burneddown. On Valentine's Day the police took two hours to reach a Kingstonpharmacy where a crowd shouting anti-gay epithets had cornered three men;then the constables allegedly attacked an activist who had tried to help themen, striking him in the abdomen with a rifle butt and slapping himrepeatedly in the face.

Those grim tales don't square with popular notions of Jamaica as a laid-backCaribbean paradise whose unofficial national motto reads "No problem,mon." ­Human-rights activists fault gay-baiting recording artists,fundamentalist Christian church groups and mainstream political leaders whodare not antagonize some of the island's more prominent men of the cloth,like W. A. Blair, the head of Jamaica's New Testament Church of God, who hascalled for the public flogging of so-called Sodomites. Jamaica also has theworld's third-highest per capita murder rate, behind South Africa andColombia, and the blend of widespread violence and anti-homosexual prejudicecreates a ripe climate for hate crimes targeting gays and lesbians. "We'vebecome increasingly violent as a society generally and increasingly tolerantof violence as a solution to our problems," says Carolyn Gomes, executivedirector of the human-rights organization Jamaicans for Justice. "It isquite a toxic brew."

In 2004, Human Rights Watch published a devastating report that linked therising incidence of HIV/AIDS cases in Jamaica to the rampant bigotry on theisland. The report found that some gay men were reluctant to seek medicaltreatment because they feared disclosure of their sexual orientation in sucha hostile environment, and in some cases health workers at public hospitalsand clinics flatly refused to treat HIV/AIDS patients. Even today homophobiais tacitly condoned by some political parties and companies. TheJamaican-owned Sandals chain of resort hotels refused to lodge same-sexcouples as recently as three years ago, and the country has retained acolonial-era law that criminalizes anal intercourse long after the formercolonial power, Britain, struck down such statutes. During the country's2001 election the opposition Jamaican Labour Party adopted as its jingle thesong "Chi Chi Man," which celebrates the burning and killing of gay men.


Pridefest Block Party celebrates GLBT community (Boulder, CO)

By Heath Urie
Sunday, September 9, 2007

Megan Harris, right, from Texas, and Brooke Pfeuffer, left, react to acomment made by "priest" Cris Jones during an illegal wedding Saturdayduring Boulder Pride's Pridefest Block Party in front of the Boulder CountyCourthouse on the Pearl Street Mall. The women are graduates of theUniversity of Colorado and say they have been together for five years. "Fiveyears together is like 15 years in gay years," Jones said. Along with aphoto, the couple received an illegal marriage certificate listing severallegal rights given to traditional couples that gay and lesbian couplescannot recieve. The annual event promotes education, tolerance andcelebration of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community.

A colorful rainbow of balloons - and equally colorful people - lined twoblocks of the Pearl Street Mall on Saturday, part of a daylong celebrationof pride in Boulder's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community.

"We're an important and significant part of the social fabric of the Bouldercommunity," said Kirsten Spielmann, executive director of Boulder Pride,which sponsored the event.

The Pridefest Block Party, as it has been called for the past five years,attracted more than 70 vendors and corporate sponsors this year, Spielmannsaid. The higher-than-usual corporate interest, and the overall success ofthe event last year, led event organizers to expand the party to include twoblocks of the mall near the Boulder County Courthouse.

Vendors crowded the mall walkway offering artwork and music from GLBTartists, beauty products and safe-sex products and literature.

"(Pridefest) is about always keeping the GLBT community visible," Spielmannsaid. "We contribute greatly to the success of the community."



More universities offer gay studies classes

Before he transferred to San Francisco State University, Emo Loredo knewonly a few other openly gay students.

So he was pleasantly surprised when he discovered his new college offerednot only dozens of classes on gay issues but an undergraduate minor inlesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender studies.

''One of the things I've learned is that homosexuality was around way backin ancient times,'' said Loredo, 24, who enrolled this semester in asociology class called Queer Cultures and Society. ''Before, I thoughthomosexuality was started in the early 1970s.''

Years after creating a smattering of gay-related classes, more than twodozen American universities are now offering full-fledged minors in gaystudies and expanding the field to include disciplines across the collegecurriculum.

Issues such as same-sex marriage and gays in the military have fueledinterest in the programs, which have been established, among other places,at Ivy League institutions Yale and Cornell and DePaul University inChicago, one of the nation's largest Catholic schools.



San Diego diocese to pay $198 million to settle 144 abuse claims

The Roman Catholic diocese of San Diego agreed Friday to pay $198 million tosettle 144 claims of sexual abuse by clergy, the second-largest paymentsince the U.S. abuse scandal erupted in 2002.

The agreement capped more than four years of negotiations in state andfederal courts. It came six months after the diocese filed for bankruptcyprotection just hours before the first of 42 lawsuits was scheduled fortrial.

Victims expressed relief that a settlement was reached, but they were angryit took so long.

''They knew all along that I'd been molested, so to put me through this isunconscionable,'' said Michael Bang of Atlanta.

The diocese had sought to protect its assets in bankruptcy court, butquickly found it a rough venue before a judge who criticized the church forits bookkeeping practices, undervaluing its real estate holdings, andfailing to disclose facts.



Chicago police abuse case sparks uproar over equal protection

Lawyers for a Chicago man whom police arrested and then allegedly beatbecause he is gay filed an amended complaint in U.S. district court onSeptember 7 to ensure equal protection based on their client's sexualorientation.

They removed a claim in their case that was based on the equal protectionstatute in the U.S. Code but referenced the equal protection clause of theU.S. Constitution.

"There is more federal case law that supports the new claim," attorneyMichael Oppenheimer said in a statement regarding the case of his client,Alexander Ruppert. "Our objective is to represent our client, not make newconstitutional law. We did not want to burden the lawyers who are workingevery day to ensure the equal protection rights of the GLBT community withan adverse ruling-which might have happened had we continued to pursue theoriginal claim."

Ruppert was arrested at the Uptown Lounge in Chicago in March 2006. In thepolice car, Ruppert claims he attempted to use his cell phone but that theofficers pulled over, dragged him out of the car, used antigay epithets, andbeat him bloody, until he told them he was HIV-positive. The officers thencalled for an ambulance, which took him to a local hospital.

Last week, the Chicago Free Press reported that the city's attorneys arguedthat the equal protection clause did not specifically cover LGBT citizens,thereby making a motion to throw the case out. Since then, the city hasspoken out, clarifying the report.



California senate OK's same-sex marriage bill

By a strong 22-15 vote, the California senate on Friday sent a marriageequality bill to the desk of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who pledged thisyear that he would veto such legislation. The bill passed the state assemblyin June with one vote to spare.

This is the second time in just under two years that the Californialegislature has passed a bill that opens the doors to legal marriage for allcouples, gay or straight.

Schwarzenegger vetoed the first effort in 2005, citing the results of a 2000California voter referendum on marriage. At that time, Schwarzenegger, amoderate Republican, said that the definition of marriage in the stateshould be determined by the voters or the state supreme court.

This time around, the governor's spokesman, Aaron McLear, says that whilethe governor has not taken a flat position, he still intends to respect theresults of the 2000 referendum, the Associated Press reported. In that vote,roughly 60% of the electorate voted to ban the recognition of same-sexmarriages from out of state.

In February, when the marriage bill once again loomed on the horizon,Schwarzenegger pledged a veto "because the people of California have votedon that issue."



Sen. Larry Craig will try to take back his guilty plea

Sen. Larry Craig should be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea in a sexsting because he was under extreme stress after being hounded by journalistsasking questions about his sexuality, his lawyer argues.

Craig, an Idaho Republican, pleaded guilty in August to disorderly conductfollowing a sting operation in a men's bathroom at the Minneapolis airport.His lawyer, William Martin, said he will file court documents Monday tryingto undo that decision so Craig can fight the charge.

Martin said Monday that Craig did not ''knowingly and intelligently enter aguilty plea.'' The senator simply admitted conduct that ''itself does notconstitute a crime,'' Martin said.

''He admits to going into the bathroom, he admits to moving his foot, headmits to reaching his hand down,'' Martin said on NBC's ''Today'' show.''That's not a crime.''

Persuading a judge to withdraw a guilty plea is difficult but Craig willargue that he was under too much stress to knowingly plead guilty, Martinsaid.


The Sunday Times

From The Sunday Times
September 9, 2007

Teenage boy who gave the first lesson in gay sex

Vadim Kiselev was a young ballet fan who first spotted Nureyev hrowingsnowballs. "Even then I could see the beautiful catlike plasticity of hismovements."

Five years older than Nureyev, with wavy blond hair and Cupid's-bowlips, Kiselev was "an exotic" by Leningrad standards, one of a coterie ofhomosexual friends who, he says, were already aware of Nureyev's true sexualorientation. "We understood that his volatility came about partly as aresult of this."

One night Kiselev invited Nureyev to his apartment. With seduction inmind, he had bought a bottle of Armenian cognac and 200 grams of caviar,which he served on bone china. But the evening did not go according toplan.

His delicate sensibilities already affronted by the young Tatar's grosstable manners, Kiselev then found his advances rudely repelled. They parted"almost enemies", and had no further contact until Nureyev turned up oneday, saying: "I think I offended you." He apologised, and while continuingto flirt with Kiselev (addressing him as "Adonis"), resumed an acquaintancefree of sexual ties.

He was not yet willing to consider male love as an option for himself.(Years later he told a lover in London that when he had found himselfattracted to a boy on a Leningrad bus he had felt so ashamed that he got offat the next stop.)

When Nureyev met Teja Kremke, however, his attitude changed. Not onlythat, their relationship would lead to his defection from the Soviet Union.

Teja was a 17-year-old East German boy with an erotic presence asvisible as a heat haze. A student at the Vaganova ballet school, he hadshiny chestnut hair, pale skin, full lips and intense grey-blue eyes.

He was invited to the apartment of his teacher Alexander Pushkin, whereNureyev - already a star with the Kirov Ballet - still lived. Pushkin'swife Xenia, who had already seduced Nureyev, was instinctively drawn to thisbeautiful youth. She adopted him as a new protégé, shaping his thoughts andtastes. Pushkin, whom Teja worshipped, soon became a father figure for him,too. A deep bond developed among all four. "It was a liaison à quatre.They were kind of bound together," said a friend of the Pushkins.


The New York Times

September 10, 2007

Sting Charges Against Craig Harsher Than Some


MINNEAPOLIS, Sept. 6 - The airport men's room where Senator Larry E. Craigwas arrested here in a police sting operation is in one of the busiest areasof the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, at the intersection offive concourses and near a bustling mall and food court.

Mr. Craig passed through the terminal regularly as he traveled between hishome district in Boise, Idaho, and his Congressional offices in Washington.

The details of his arrest shocked his colleagues and constituents, but hewas not the only person ensnarled in the airport police enforcement actionagainst what the authorities said was lewd conduct in the restroom.Thirty-nine other men were arrested here in a three-month period thissummer.

A review of their cases and interviews with four lawyers representing manyof the accused show how Mr. Craig - who pleaded guilty to disorderly conductbut now says he is innocent - fits into the larger picture of the stingoperation, and sheds light on his prospects in court should he be allowed towithdraw his guilty plea.

Police and court files indicate that Mr. Craig's case may have been handledmore harshly than some of the others. For instance, he alone among the 40men arrested was charged with both disorderly conduct and interference withprivacy. The other men were charged with one or the other, or with indecentexposure or loitering.


The New York Times

September 10, 2007

Gay Musician Skewers Candidates

In last month's forum among the Democratic presidential candidates sponsoredby the gay and lesbian cable channel Logo, seemingly simple questions werethe most memorable. And many came from a somewhat surprising source: MelissaEtheridge, the rock musician who was invited to sit on the panel of mostlyjournalists.

To John Edwards: "I have heard that you have said in the past that you feeluncomfortable around gay people. Are you O.K. right now?" (Mr. Edwardsdenied ever saying such a thing and the issue was put to rest.)

To Hillary Rodham Clinton, Ms. Etheridge said that gays and lesbians were"thrown under the bus" after the 1992 election. "Are we going to be leftbehind the way we were before?" (Mrs. Clinton said she didn't see it quitethat way.)

To Bill Richardson: "Do you think homosexuality is a choice or is itbiological?" (Mr. Richardson's hesitant response became the pre-eminentheadline of the forum.)

Viewers may have wondered whether Ms. Etheridge had any experiencequestioning politicians. In a phone interview last week, she said it was herinexperience that gave her an advantage.

"Maybe I didn't know the decorum. I didn't know the 'shoulds' of what youshould do," Ms. Etheridge said. "I did try to be personable and did try toask simple questions, and maybe that's what we've moved away from in ourpolitical discourse."


The New York Times

September 9, 2007

Evangelicals Hesitant About Thompson
Filed at 1:23 p.m. ET

Prominent evangelical leaders who spent the summer hoping Fred Thompsonwould emerge as their favored Republican presidential contender are havingdoubts as he begins his long-teased campaign.

For social conservatives dissatisfied with other GOP choices, the ''Law &Order'' actor and former Tennessee senator represents a Ronald Reagan-likefigure, someone they hope will agree with them on issues and stands a chanceof winning.

But Thompson's less-than-clear stance on a federal gay marriage amendmentand his delay in entering the race are partly responsible for a suddenshyness among leading evangelicals.

''A month or two ago, I sensed there was some urgency for people to make amove and find a candidate,'' said Tony Perkins, president of the FamilyResearch Council, a Washington-based conservative Christian group. ''Rightnow, I think people are stepping back a little and watching. The field isstill very fluid.''

A loose network of influential evangelical leaders known as the ArlingtonGroup met privately Wednesday and Thursday in Washington to discusspresidential politics and other issues, participants said.


The New York Times

September 10, 2007

In Polygamy Country, Old Divisions Are Fading

ST. GEORGE, Utah, Sept. 7 - For generations of rural religious polygamistslike those Warren S. Jeffs once led, this was the big town and the citadelof sin all in one.

St. George, founded on the southern route to California in wagon train days,was the place to buy groceries or spend an occasional night out. But it wasalso the local fortress of mainstream Mormonism, which is vehement in itsopposition to polygamy.

The polygamists, in turn, looked down on Mormons as apostates who lost theirway more than 100 years ago by denouncing polygamy, and thus the teachingsof the church's founder, Joseph Smith, in a political compromise to achievestatehood for Utah.

Now Mr. Jeffs is being tried on felony charges that he was an accomplice torape in arranging polygamous marriages between under-age girls and oldermen, and the jury is being drawn from a pool of St. George residents.

The trial is expected to throw a sharp light on polygamy and on the cultureof Mr. Jeffs's group in particular, the Fundamentalist Church of JesusChrist of Latter-day Saints, which is estimated to number about 10,000people throughout the West. Jury selection began Friday, and Mr. Jeffs, 51,could face life in prison if convicted.


The Washington Post

Penn to star as Harvey Milk

By Gregg Goldstein
Monday, September 10, 2007; 2:43 AM

TORONTO (Hollywood Reporter) - Sean Penn is attached to play gay '70s SanFranciso politician Harvey Milk, and Matt Damon his assassin in along-gestating project from director Gus Van Sant.

Once a distribution deal is finalized, Van Sant hopes to begin production onthe as-yet-untitled feature in San Francisco as early as December. Theuncertain start date may affect Damon's participation as Milk's killer, DanWhite.

It's the latest chapter in a long-running race to film the biopic of thefirst openly gay prominent elected official, which has pitted Van Sant'sproject against another from fellow openly gay director Bryan Singer.


Kansas Governor Signs Order Prohibiting Discrimination Against the
State's GLBT Employees

By Chrys Hudson

Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius signed an executive order that willprohibit discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual andtransgender state employees late last week.

The order, effective immediately, requires state agencies underSebelius' direct control to put in place programs to preventon-the-job harassment against gay, lesbian, bisexual andtransgendered workers.

"I'm sorry it took us so long," Sebelius said after signing theorder. She also endorsed a bill in the Republican-dominate dLegislature that would prohibit discrimination against gays andlesbians in housing and private employment.

"We need to make sure in Kansas that all of our employees aretreated with dignity and respect and that the doors to stateemployment are open to all," Sebelius added. "It was just clear wewere behind the times."


The Miami Herald

Posted on Sat, Sep. 08, 2007

He might end up fighting for gays

Well, that didn't take long. A mere five days from the Roll Call revelationsto the presumed resignation. Thirty-three years of public service down thetoilet, and that is the last bathroom joke I'll make.

When Larry Craig got caught in a sex sting in a Minneapolis airportrestroom, Republican stalwarts broke the speed record turning him from thedistinguished senator into the disgusting senator. Gay-rights groups did notrise to the defense of their public enemy. The only politician expressingactual empathy for Craig was Jim McGreevey, the ''outed'' former governor ofNew Jersey who is now -- you cannot make this stuff up -- in divinityschool.

By Tuesday, even Idahoans thought it was all over.

Now what's happening? It looks like Craig's ''intention to resign'' left aloophole as wide as his stance. If he can fight off the charges to which hepleaded guilty, his spokesman and his lawyer now say, he may not resign.

I have no desire to throw myself between Craig and the madding crowd. He wasnever my kind of senator. I don't want to send my grandson into a publicrestroom used for assignations. Nor do I enjoy watching another humiliatedwife standing by her husband.

But I have to agree with Sen. Arlen Specter in separating the law from thelewd, the criminal from the yucky. What law did this sad sack of a62-year-old senator with his ludicrous explanations actually break?

What disorderly conduct?

Craig was charged with violating privacy under what is essentially a PeepingTom law.


Parents ask judge to obstruct lessons on homosexuality until appeal in '08
Courtney Mabeus, The Examiner

2007-09-07 07:00:00.0

Montgomery County -

Groups opposed to the new sexual education curriculum in Montgomery CountyPublic Schools are asking a Circuit Court judge to prevent controversiallessons on homosexuality from being taught until an appeal can be heardearly next year.

The motion, filed this week in Rockville, is the latest volley in a two-yearbattle between the county and three groups: Citizens For A ResponsibleCurriculum, Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays, and the Family LeaderNetwork.

Lawyer and CRC President John Garza on Thursday told The Examiner a hearingdate has not yet been set on its most recent motion, filed Tuesday.

The particular lessons, which are planned for all county eighth- and10th-graders in health courses, are not scheduled to be taught untilsometime in October, he said, well before a January hearing in Circuit Courton the opponents' appeal.

That appeal challenges the state board's decision this summer upholding thecounty's approval of sexual education curriculum that Garza called "blatantdiscrimination against certain religious groups" because of its treatment ofhomosexuality.


[Send your comments about articles to]

No comments: