Thursday, September 13, 2007

GLBT DIGEST September 13, 2007

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


Don't Forget! We need to hear from you!

Please respond .........

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


The New York Times

September 13, 2007

Stern Says Book's Gay Sex Claim `Absurd'

Filed at 9:24 a.m. ET

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Howard K. Stern says claims in a new book that he andAnna Nicole Smith's ex-boyfriend Larry Birkhead had a videotaped sexualencounter before her death are absurd and could psychologically damageSmith's infant daughter.

''It's ridiculous. I mean it's absolutely absurd,'' Stern told

The Web site said it obtained the comments from Stern during a birthdayparty for Smith's 1-year-old daughter, Dannielynn, in Louisville, Ky., lastSaturday.



The Washington Post

In W.Va., Police Hold Six In Case of Alleged Torture
Victim, Who Is Black, Remains in Stable Condition in Hospital

By Paul Lewis
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, September 13, 2007; Page A03

BIG CREEK, W.Va., Sept. 12 -- The curtains on the trailer home were closed,a shopping cart of empty beer cans was dumped by the porch and rats scurriedacross the trash-strewn yard. The yellow police tape attached to the porchrail gave the only hint of the brutal and bizarre crime that authoritiesallege took place last week in a trailer home here in the southwest cornerof West Virginia.

Police said six people, including three women, held a 20-year-old womancaptive for at least a week. During that time, the victim, who is black, wasbeaten, stabbed, raped and tortured, all the while being subject to racialslurs from her white tormentors, police said.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

[euro-queer] Iranian and Canadian activists on the human rights

by Rowan Percy
Special to the Driftwood

"Imagine, for 24 hours every day you have to put a mask on your face. Youhave no friends. For example... some friends tell you about a girl. But youare gay and are not interested in relationships with girls. But now you haveto start a relationship with a girl", says Arsham Parsi, 26, an Iranianrefugee, living in Toronto.

He is an international activist for LGBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual,transgender) human rights.

Parsi's Iranian Queer Organization (IRQO), which wants to see homosexualitydecriminalized in Iran, works closely with Human Rights Watch, who reactsstrenuously when the Iranian Regime persecutes LGBTs.

Police entrap gay chat room subscribers and arranging a same-sex date canresult in arrest, flogging and execution.

Iranian lesbians are doubly constrained as arranged marriages are oftenenforced, and a life of "living death" ensues, according to interviewsposted at Lesbians also endure frequent rape in the course ofincarceration.

Jacob Schweda, a gay man and a GISS graduate, currently studying at PearsonCollege with 200 students from 88 countries, says, "In Malawi and many othercountries homosexuality is illegal... and in that environment ... peopleassume I am heterosexual."



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Lambda Legal

Summer Victories Reach Midwest
Victory in Ohio...Again!
Equality v. Toaster Oven
Let's Talk About Sex Education
Not So Quiet on the Western Front

In Brief
by Kevin Cathcart
Lambda Legal
Executive Director

We knew it wouldn't take long before the Iowa judge who struck down thestate's ban on marriage for same-sex couples was pegged an "activist judge"by the usual suspects. They say they are defending "traditional" marriageand our democracy itself. But their attacks on the judicial system are aboutas un-democratic as you can get.

Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts and Republicanpresidential hopeful led the pack, weighing in just minutes after the rulingwas announced. Clearly without enough time to read the 63-page decision, hecalled it "...another example of an activist court and unelected judgestrying to redefine marriage and disregard the will of the people...."

When politicians attack judges who are simply doing their job enforcing theConstitution, it is a strike against our government itself. The founders ofthis country recognized the danger of placing too much power in any one partof the government. To avoid this, they separated authority into threebranches, the legislative, executive and judicial. The branches exercise"checks and balances" over one another, to ensure that the law of the landis upheld and that the core principles of liberty and equality are availableto everyone.

Politicians' strong words against the courts may win them support from somepeople at the polls, but this comes at great risk to the system ofgovernment upon which this country was founded. That means anyone whoattacks independent courts is, in essence, attacking America. We need tostand up and denounce these attacks in Iowa and anywhere else they occur.Our courts, our Constitution and our country depend on it.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List


To Form a More Perfect Union: Marriage Equality News

Information, news, and discussion about the legal recognition of same-sexcouples and their families, including marriages, domestic partnerships,civil unions, adoptions, foster children and similar issues.

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Judge rejects state bid to stop hormone therapy for transgender inmate

Associated Press - September 11, 2007 8:04 PM ET

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - A federal judge says the state still must provideestrogen to an inmate who castrated herself after prison doctors refused togive her female hormones.

Jenniffer Spencer was born biologically male but legally changed her namefrom Randall Gammett to Jenniffer while in prison. She says she is a womantrapped in a man's body.

Spencer asked prison officials to give her estrogen as a treatment forgender identity disorder, but the state refused. So she castrated herselfwith a disposable razor blade, and later sued the state to try to get thefeminizing hormones.

In July U.S. District Judge Mikel Williams ordered the Idaho Department ofCorrections to provide Spencer with estrogen until a trial can be held onthe matter. But the state asked Williams to reconsider, with attorneyssaying they have new evidence that Spencer lied about her previous lifestyle-- that she didn't' live as a woman prior to imprisonment and that she hasnever taken female hormones in the past.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

CBS warns of censorship if bare breast edict stays

By Jon Hurdle

The U.S. penalty on CBS for televising singer Janet Jackson's breast duringthe 2004 Super Bowl halftime show will effectively censor U.S. broadcastingif it is upheld, the network argued on Tuesday.

CBS lawyer Robert Corn-Revere urged the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appealsto overturn a $550,000 fine imposed by the Federal Communications Commissionfor indecency after Jackson's right breast was exposed to almost 90 millionTV viewers for a fraction of a second.

The court is expected to rule in the coming months.

The network called the incident "unscripted, unauthorized and unintended,"and Corn-Revere said the ruling has had a "profoundly censorious effect" onU.S. broadcasting by deterring stations from showing material that couldpossibly be judged indecent.

Eric Miller, an attorney for the FCC, defended the conclusion that the SuperBowl show was indecent because it was a "highly sexualized performance" evenbefore the exposure.

Singer Justin Timberlake was performing with Jackson when he tugged open hertop, revealing Jackson's breast with the nipple obscured by jewelry.

Timberlake later called it a "wardrobe malfunction."



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

[euro-queer] ILGA-Europe's report: Going Beyond the Law: promotingequality in employment

Dear friends,

ILGA-Europe published second revised and updated edition of its report"Going Beyond the Law: promoting equality in employment". This report isavailable in PDF format on our website:


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Pride at Work


The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) is moving toward a vote inCongress! It is absolutely crucial for LGBT people to let key swinglegislators know that we want the federal government to protect workingpeople against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and genderidentity.

Although ENDA has picked up support in recent years, we still need topersuade a few dozen swing legislators to do the right thing and vote forequality. Please add your voice at this vital moment! Go to learn more. (If you've already takenaction on ENDA, please pass this e-mail along to one other person - everyvoice counts!)

Send a letter to the following decision maker(s):
President George W. Bush
Your Congressperson
Your Senators

Below is the sample letter:



Forwarded from Leon Van Dyke

The New Yorker

by Hendrik Hertzberg September 17, 2007

On the evening of January 21, 1953, Bayard Rustin, a forty-year-oldorganizer for the Fellowship of Reconciliation, a leading organization ofreligious pacifists, gave a talk, in Pasadena, California, aboutanti-colonial struggles in West Africa. Among the admirers who approachedhim after the speech were two young men. Late that night, he and the youngmen were arrested after being discovered in flagrante in a parked car. Hepleaded guilty to a charge of "lewd vagrancy" and was carted off to servesixty days behind bars.

The episode was a source of shame for Rustin, not on account of hishomosexuality (about which, for that era, he was astonishingly relaxed) orbecause of the stigma of jail (he had spent two years in federal prison as aconscientious objector) but because he knew that his carelessness had letdown his colleagues in the nonviolent movements for peace and racialequality. Yet his service to those causes did not end. Though he had toresign from the F.O.R., its secular twin, the War Resisters League, soonhired him as its executive secretary. In 1956, he became a mentor to theyoung Martin Luther King, Jr., beginning an association that, while rocky attimes, culminated, on August 28, 1963, in the epochal March on Washington.The cover of the next issue of Life featured not King but the instigator ofthe march, the labor leader A. Philip Randolph, and its principal organizer,Bayard Rustin.

Rustin's homosexuality, the Pasadena incident in particular, embarrassed andangered some of his political comrades. But none of them responded to itwith cruelty or contempt. Senator Larry Craig, of Idaho, has not been solucky. No sooner had Craig's brother Republican politicians learned that hehad been caught with his pants down in a men's-room stall at theMinneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (where, a year from now, theywill arrive by the planeload for their National Convention) than thestampede began.



Journal of Homosexuality
Volume 53, Issue 1/2
Editor(s): John P. De Cecco, PhD


Male Sex Work: A Business Doing Pleasure
Guest Editor(s):
Todd G Morrison, PhD
Bruce W Whitehead

This issue is now available online and will soon be mailed to subscribers inapproximately 4-6 weeks.

NOTE: If the URLs in this email are not active hyperlinks, copy and pastethe URL into the address/location box in your browser.


Benjamin Scuglia

Haworth Continuing Features Submission

"It's a Business Doing Pleasure With You": An Interdisciplinary Reader on
Male Sex Work
Todd G. Morrison, Bruce W. Whitehead

Male Prostitution: Pathology, Paradigms and Progress in Research
David S. Bimbi

Sex and the Unspoken in Male Street Prostitution
Kerwin Kaye

Exploring the Interpersonal Relationships in Street-Based Male Sex Work:
Results from an Australian Qualitative Study
David Leary, Victor Minichiello

Power and Control in Gay Strip Clubs
Joseph R. G. DeMarco

Alienation of Sexuality in Male Erotic Dancing
David M. Boden

The Closing of Atlantis
Jonathan David Jackson

Porn Star/Stripper/Escort: Economic and Sexual Dynamics in a Sex Work Career
Jeffrey Escoffier

"Nobody's Ever Going to Make a Fag Pretty Woman": Stigma Awareness and the
Putative Effects of Stigma Among a Sample of Canadian Male Sex Workers
Todd G. Morrison, Bruce W. Whitehead

Looking Beyond HIV: Eliciting Individual and Community Needs of Male
Internet Escorts
Jeffrey T. Parsons, Juline A. Koken, David S. Bimbi

'Western Union Daddies' and their Quest for Authenticity: An Ethnographic
Study of the Dominican Gay Sex Tourism Industry
Mark B. Padilla

Musings on Male Sex Work: A "Virtual" Discussion
Rebecca L. Harriman, Barry Johnston, Paula M. Kenny

Journal of Homosexuality is published both in print and electronically. Paid
library subscribers receive electronic access that can be made available

For more information about the journal:

To recommend the journal to your library or a colleague:

Special Thematic Issues of the Journal Published Separately:

Contact for the full article


Journal of Bisexuality
Volume 7, Issue 1/2
Editor(s): Jonathan Alexander, PhD

This issue is now available online and will soon be mailed to subscribers inapproximately 4-6 weeks.

NOTE: If the URLs in this email are not active hyperlinks, copy and pastethe URL into the address/location box in your browser.


About the Contributors
Haworth Continuing Features Submission

From the Editor
Jonathan Alexander

Introduction: Where the Bisexuals Are . . . or Not . . .
Jonathan Alexander, Keith Dorwick

The "Other" Dreamgirl: Female Bisexuality As the "Dark Secret" of David
Lynch's Mulholland Drive (2001)
Maria San Filippo

Cinematic Trash or Cultural Treasure? Conflicting Viewer Reactions to the
Extremely Violent World of Bisexual Men in Gregg Araki's "Heterosexual
Movie" The Doom Generation
Kylo-Patrick R Hart

Boys Will Still Be Boys: Bisexuality and the Fate of the Shakespearean Boy
Actress on Stage and Screen
Keith Dorwick

"A Queer Feeling When I Look at You": Gender and Sexuality in Three Films by
George Cukor
Elyce Rae Helford

Bisexuality in the Media: A Digital Roundtable
Jonathan Alexander

Brokeback Media
Wayne M. Bryant

Brief Mention
David Van Leer

Journal of Bisexuality is published both in print and electronically. Paidlibrary subscribers receive electronic access that can be made availablesite-wide.

For more information about the journal:

To recommend the journal to your library or a colleague:

Special Thematic Issues of the Journal Published Separately:

Contact for the full article


Forwarded from Joe Van Eron

A favor to ask, it only takes a minute....

Please tell ten friends to tell ten today! The Breast Cancer site is havingtrouble getting enough people to click on their site daily to meet theirquota of donating at least one free mammogram a day to an underprivilegedwoman. It takes less than a minute to go to their site and click on"donating a mammogram" for free (pink window in the middle).

This doesn't cost you a thing. Their corporate sponsors/advertisers use thenumber of daily visits to donate mammogram in exchange for advertising.

Here's the web site! Pass it along to people you know.


From EuroQueer

11th September 2007 13:11
Tony Grew

The High Court in Northern Ireland has ruled that parts of the SexualOrientation Regulations must be removed.

In a victory for Evangelical Christian activists, Mr Justice Weatherup saidthat a provision that protects LGB people from harassment when accessinggoods and services should be set aside.

He upheld the rest of the regulations.

Christians who provide goods and services will not be prosectuted for sayingthey are unwilling to provide them to LGB people.

The removal of harassment protections also applies to schools in NorthernIreland, many of them run by Christian churches.

"The applicants contend that the regulations treat evangelical Christiansless favourably than other persons to the extent that they are subject tocivil liability for manifesting the orthodox belief in relation tohomosexuality," the judge wrote in his 42-page judgment.

"I am satisfied that the regulations do not treat evangelical Christiansless favourably than others."

The judge ruled that as not a long enough period had been set aside forpublic consultation on the regulations, the harassment provision should beset aside.



CHAMP is pleased to distribute our September issue of the Solidarity Projectnewsletter.

Solidarity Project is devoted to building power to fight the root causes ofHIV/AIDS in the United States and around the world. Our newsletter focuseson one theme each issue, providing information and action steps that you cantake to fight back and stand up for human rights worldwide.

All issues are available at Each article listed belowis linked to that particular article - only a click away!


Suzy Subways, Editor

more . . . .


Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights Program

Actually we've been talking about doing a paper about entrapmentsince before the Craig incident broke. (So far as I know Human RightsWatch and IGLHRC were the first human rights organizations to treatsolicitation in public restrooms as protected free speech, back in1998.) The main obstacle I've been thinking about over the last twoweeks is not so much the different jurisdictions as cataloguing thedifferent forms of laws (public disorder, disorderly conduct, vagrancy,public scandal, solicitation, public indecency, etc. .... the intent topersecute hides under so many vague expression). This may mean it'smore a matter of a longer report than a paper but a campaign isnecessary. In plenty of jurisdictions homosexual sex has beendecriminalized but the act of asking for it, except in certain veryrestricted zones, has not.

It would be helpful if people could share some of the laws in questionin their own countries or localities. I don't have funds to throw atthe moment but I can pitch, and catch, information.

Scott Long
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights Program
Human Rights Watch




When a tabloid newspaper in Uganda published a hate-filled exposé lastSunday listing 40 men it accused of being gay, it was only the latestchapter in a campaign of terror that was unleashed last August. Many gayactivists went into hiding when the country's Deputy Attorney General lastmonth called for mass arrests of homosexuals--but the country's LGBTcoalition, SMUG (Sexual Minorities Uganda) is fighting back. For all thedetails, click on:



NY Times quote "gay person" related to Iran

During the years I've been organizing on behalf of LGBT Iranian,there's been a constant debate about use of the word "gay" and all itsWestern connotations and if it can be applied to Iranians who engagein same-sex relations.

Many intellectuals and activists maintain that the gay identity is aWestern construct that is simply inappropriate when discussing thingslike the hangings and executions for homosexual conduct in the IslamicRepublic of Iran.

While the debate continues, gay Iranians formed organizations usingthe "g" word, prominent among them was the Persian Gay and LesbianOrganization, now known as the IRanian Queer Organization.

Last Sunday the New York Times ran an illuminating article titled"Molding the Ideal Islamic Citizen," and to my surprise, and smalldelight in my activist heart, the gay word was used.

That in and of itself wasn't what made the word jump out and catch myattention. It was that the word was contained in a quote from a leaderin the previous Iranian government.



Immigration Equality

Immigration Equality files amicus brief for detained gay Ugandan

Sept 12, 2007

A gay man from Uganda is fighting for his safety with help from ImmigrationEquality. "Okello" (not his real name) applied for asylum in Massachusetts.The Immigration Judge who originally heard his case believed every word hesaid: that he was gay, that his teachers had punished him by caning, andthat his own father had threatened to kill him. Yet the judge denied himany relief.

In the Judge's view, although Uganda's criminal law punishes homosexualitywith life imprisonment, and there is a pervasive and violent social animusagainst gay people, this represents merely "discrimination," notpersecution. Immigration Equality submitted an amicus brief in the case,arguing that Okello should be granted asylum. Uganda was recently listed asthe worst country in the world in which to be gay, beating out Iran, Egyptand Saudi Arabia for this dubious distinction.


Old, gay and here to stay

Lesbian group fights ageism, advocates change.
By Kelly Puente, Staff writer
Long Beach Press Telegram
Article Launched:09/11/2007 10:41:30 PM PDT

LONG BEACH - They're old, they're lesbians and they refuse to hide.The women of Old Lesbians Organizing for Change embraced their age andlifestyle on Sunday during the first "Old Lesbian Picnic" in Long Beach'sHeartwell Park.

OLOC is a national organization for lesbians ages 60 and older. The grouphas more than 700 members across the country and works to confront ageismand other discrimination.

"Old is not a dirty word, and neither is lesbian," said Mina Meyer, head ofthe Long Beach Chapter.

Although OLOC has been around since 1989, the organization never had aSouthern California Chapter until Meyer, 67, started the Long Beach chapterin January.

more . . . . .



Is Lindsey Graham gay?

Seven Minutes in Gay Hell: Is Lindsey Graham in S.C.'s airtight closet?
By Greg Hambrick

Is Lindsey Graham gay?

At 52, the life-long bachelor has been fodder for such rumors for years, butwith the resignation of Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho - the anti-gay politicianwho pled guilty to disorderly conduct after allegedly soliciting sex in anairport men's room - the internet is abuzz over who's next, and they'redying to know what's going on in Graham's bedroom. Is it the latest graspfor the light switch in South Carolina's powerful political closet? Or theinevitable labeling of "closet-clinging self-hater" that befalls any contentbachelor?

Mainstream media often avoids asking older, single politicians what they doin their free time. While there were rumors dating back 25 years, it wasn'tuntil blog reports about Craig trolling cruisy D.C. restrooms that The IdahoStatesmen put a reporter on the story. And even though they held the storyuntil after Craig's arrest was made public, some still accused the paper oforchestrating a witch hunt.

When GQ asked last year, Graham wasn't mean, just dismissive. He said he'snot gay, just a loner. But that denial isn't stalling renewed interest inthe question. In a post on who's next out of the closet following Craig'sarrest, blogger Michael Signorile ( first points aquestioning finger at Graham.

"Let's have a real investigation of the rumors about South CarolinaRepublican Senator Lindsey Graham, who . has been rumored to be gay foryears," Signorile says. "Like Larry Craig, Graham has voted antigay -including for the federal marriage amendment - while people in SouthCarolina and Washington have discussed what some say is an open secret for along, long time."


Canada's changing family

Globe and Mail Update and Canadian Press
September 12, 2007 at 12:28 PM EDT

TORONTO - The redefinition of family continues apace in Canada, with thelatest household figures from the 2006 census showing a significant increasein the number of same-sex couples and a first-ever count of same-sexmarriages.

At the same time, there are more common-law families, more childlesscouples, more people living alone and a greater number of single-parenthouseholds in Canada than ever before.

The census counted 45,345 same-sex couples, up 32 per cent from 2001,representing 0.6 per cent of all couples in Canada. Not surprisingly, halfof these couples lived in the three largest census metropolitan areas:Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.

Statistics Canada allowed census respondents for the first time to indicateif they were in a same-sex marriage. A total of 7,465 couples said theywere.

more . . . . .


Group says papers show knowledge of abuse

Mexico cardinal faces accusation
By Jessica Bernstein-Wax, Associated Press | September 12, 2007

MEXICO CITY - A victims' group said yesterday that newly released documentssupport its claim that Mexico's most prominent cardinal knew a Mexicanpriest was suspected of molesting children but transferred him to the UnitedStates anyway.

Survivor's Network of Those Abused by Priests made public writtencorrespondence between Mexico City Cardinal Norberto Rivera and Los AngelesCardinal Roger Mahony. It also released a 1986 Mexican police report inwhich witnesses alleged the suspect spent the night with young boys whileworking as a priest in the central state of Puebla.

The documents were part of Rivera's defense in a lawsuit filed against himin Los Angeles Superior Court that alleges he and Mahony conspired toprotect the suspect, the Rev. Nicolas Aguilar. SNAP represents the victimnamed in the lawsuit, Joaquin Aguilar Mendez, who is no relation to theaccused priest.

"The documents were an eye-opener for us," said Eric Barragan, director ofSNAP in Mexico and Latin America.

Carlos Villa Roiz, a spokesman for the Mexico City archdiocese, did notreturn calls from The Associated Press seeking comment. Rivera'srepresentative, Bernardo Fernandez, has said the Los Angeles court has nolegal right to try a Mexican cardinal for events that occurred in Mexico.

more . . . . .


September 13, 2007

As seminary chancellor, American Jewish scholar seeks to renew ConservativeJudaism

Arnold Eisen has already influenced American Judaism with research showingthat more individuals are following their own spiritual path at the expenseof the nation's Jewish community.

Now he's got a new way to put his scholarship to use, as chancellor of theJewish Theological Seminary of America, the flagship institution forConservative Judaism, located in New York.

Eisen, 56, who was installed Wednesday, is only the second layman to leadthe school since it was founded 121 years ago as the intellectual center forthe Conservative movement, which follows tradition while allowing somechanges for modern times.

A leading analyst of secularization and other modern trends shaping U.S.Judaism, he most recently served as professor of Jewish culture and religionat Stanford University.

But for the past year, he's been on tour-traveling the country askingConservative Jews how they can revitalize their 760 synagogues in NorthAmerica.

more . . . . .


September 13, 2007

SLDN adds new executive director

Former congressional staff leader and government relations executive AubreySarvis will become the next executive director of the Servicemembers LegalDefense Network, the organization announced Wednesday. Sarvis will assumethe role October 1.

"I have known Aubrey for a long time, and one of his qualities I respect themost is his leadership," U.S. Senate majority leader Harry Reid said in aprepared statement. "Aubrey's vast knowledge of government, combined withhis commitment to public service, will serve the organization well."

A U.S. Army veteran who enlisted at age 17, Sarvis served more than threeyears of active duty, including 13 months in South Korea. From 1977 to 1983,Sarvis worked as staff director and chief counsel of the Senate Commerce,Science, and Transportation Committee. He also managed public policy andlegislative operations for Verizon as an executive vice president between1984 and 1998.

Founded in 1993, the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network is a nationalnonprofit agency that offers advocacy and legal services to LGBT militarypersonnel. The group also aims to put and end to discrimination andharassment caused by the government's "don't ask, don't tell" policy. (TheAdvocate)


September 13, 2007

Bank grants LGBT center $17K

Bank of America has awarded the San Diego LGBT Community Center $17,000 tosupport its Youth Housing Project.

The gift represents renewed funding for the center's Youth Housing Project,which provides permanent and supportive housing with a specialty in servingLGBT and HIV-positive young people. Bank of America has supported the center's youth services and programming since 2002. (The Advocate)


September 13, 2007

Minneapolis prosecutors to fight Craig's guilty plea withdrawal

Prosecutors representing the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport planto fight Sen. Larry Craig's attempts to withdraw his guilty plea, airportspokesman Patrick Hogan told McClatchy Newspapers. The judgment was sealedwhen Craig pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and paid a $575 fine, Hogansaid.

"There was an arrest, several weeks later there was a plea, and a fine waspaid," Hogan said. "We will object to the motion filed by the senator andvigorously defend the existing plea."

Craig moved on Monday to reverse his guilty plea, stating he was in a "stateof fear" and concerned with "unnecessary" publicity when he signed it.

No date has been set for the hearing. The airport plans to file a responseto the senator's motion within a week, according to Hogan. (The Advocate)


September 13, 2007

Canada tracks gay couples

Canadian gay men and lesbians are coupling up, or at least standing up to becounted, at five times the rate of their straight counterparts, according toa 2006 census that tracked same-sex marriages there for the first time.

The number of same-sex couples, both married and unmarried, surged 32.6%between 2001 and 2006, five times the pace of opposite-sex couples,Statistics Canada reported Wednesday.

Canada's 2006 census counted same-sex married couples in line with thenational legalization of same-sex marriage on July 20, 2005.

In total, the census enumerated 45,345 same-sex couples-0.6% of all couplesin Canada-of whom 7,465, or 16.5%, were married couples, the agency said.

That's similar to Australia and New Zealand but less than the United States,whose roughly 594,000 same-sex-partner households form about 1% of thetotal, according to the 2000 U.S. Census.

more . . . . .


September 13, 2007

Iowa conservative targets judge in marriage ruling

A sometime GOP candidate for the U.S. Senate in Iowa seeks to impeach thedistrict court judge who last month struck down Iowa's ban on same-sexmarriage, the Associated Press reported.

Hog farmer Bill Salier and the group he cofounded, Everyday America, thisweek launched online petitions asking the Iowa legislature to impeach PolkCounty judge Robert Hanson, who Salier says violated the state constitutionin his August 30 ruling.

Dozens of gay and lesbian couples lined up in Des Moines for marriagelicenses, but only one couple was able to wed before Hanson stayed his ownruling pending review by higher courts.

"He's using his own political agenda to advance what he wants to see out ofhis own social norms and his own personal viewpoints," Salier told RadioIowa's O. Kay Henderson. "That's legislating from the bench and overridingthe authority of the elected individuals that the people of the state ofIowa put in charge."

Impeaching a judge takes an act of the legislature, which is controlled byDemocrats. Gov. Chet Culver, who has criticized Hanson's ruling but signedseveral pro-gay measures into law, is a Democrat as well. State senatemajority leader Mike Gronstal reportedly laughed upon learning of Salier'spetition.

more . . . . .


Ocean Grove slaps gays in the face

New Jersey may have civil unions, but in Ocean Grove a religious group isplaying the First Amendment card to deny gay and lesbian couples the rightto celebrate their unions in the boardwalk pavilion.

By Kate Walter
An exclusive posted September 11, 2007

When I was a kid growing up at the Jersey Shore we made jokes about "OceanGrave" and how they locked the town gates on Sunday and forbade driving andshopping (and how they'd probably outlaw breathing if they could get awaywith it). Those bans were ruled unconstitutional in 1979, but the town ofOcean Grove still hasn't learned its lesson. This past Labor Day weekend thewhole place-one square mile-was buzzing about its newest controversy. It wasthe first conversation I overheard on the boardwalk.

"Why can't they do it in Bradley Beach?" an old-timer asked. "Why here?"

I was tempted to reply, "Because they live here," but I kept my mouth shut.

I knew immediately that he was referring to the two lesbian couples whowanted to have their civil union ceremonies in the boardwalk pavilion andwhose requests were denied by the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association, theMethodist group that founded the summer retreat in 1869. They own thepavilion, which is used for worship services and other activities, includingthe weddings of straight couples.

more . . . . .


Focus On Family Lays Off 30

POSTED: 6:46 am MDT September 12, 2007

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- Focus on the Family is laying off 30 employeesand reassigning 15 others, due in part to a drop in projected revenue and togrowth in technology.

Most of the layoffs are in the department that answers mail and telephonerequests, while the reassignments were prompted by growth in e-mail andInternet-based communications, said Gary Schneeberger, vice president ofcommunications for the conservative Christian ministry.

The layoffs announced Monday represent about 3 percent of the work force of1,205.

The changes take effect Sept. 21, before the new fiscal year begins Oct. 1.

Focus President and CEO Jim Daly said the nonprofit organization's revenuewas projected to rise $1 million in fiscal 2006-2007 from the previousfiscal year, but the increase wasn't enough to offset inflation.

"Our budget was fairly aggressive. The projected budget was $150 million. Itlooks like it will come in about $8 million under, at $142 million,"Schneeberger said.

Dobson has said on several of his radio shows that donations have fallen.

Many churches and parachurch organizations are seeing decreases in income,especially amid economic woes and the housing downturn, according to TerryGorka, head administrator at The Barna Group, a California-based researchorganization that tracks Christian ministries.

Severance packages for laid-off employees will include contributions tohealth care, job-placement assistance and financial compensation.


The teen who challenged John McCain

He asked about gay rights, working class
Monitor staff
Sep 7, 2007

William Sleaster, a sophomore at Concord High, doesn't like John McCain.

He doesn't like his stance on gay rights, his feelings toward the workingclass, his hawkish view on the war in Iraq.

And now everyone knows it.

Sleaster made his views clear Tuesday morning at Concord High, where McCain,who's vying for the Republican nomination for president, spoke to studentsin the school auditorium.

The eighth visit by a presidential candidate this year was explosive, afterSleaster injected fire that some thought disrespectful. The national media,the internet and satellite radio broadcast his thoughts, making thisself-described socialist bisexual a mini celebrity.


Gay Muslim documentary coming out at Toronto

Wed Sep 12, 2007 1:52PM BST

TORONTO (Hollywood Reporter) - A documentary about Islam and homosexualityis vying for attention at the Toronto International Film Festival, wherehigh-profile movies set in the Middle East are already making a splash.

"A Jihad For Love," which was six years in the making, follows gay andlesbian Muslims battling racial profiling and harassment after the September11 attacks and subsequent attacks in London and Madrid.

Indian filmmaker Parvez Sharma filmed gay Muslims in 12 countries and ninelanguages, including India, Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Egypt, South Africa andFrance, and always shot footage in secret to escape the attention of localauthorities.

"We are presenting Islam's most unlikely storytellers," Sharma said of hisdebut feature, which does not yet have North American distribution.

Sharma knows he faces stiff competition in Toronto for media attention, witha variety of titles, including Paul Haggis' "In The Valley of Elah," BrianDePalma's "Redacted" and Nick Broomfield's "Battle for Haditha," allfocusing on events in the Middle East.

more. . . . .


Bathroom sting violates priest's rights, lawyers say

Boca cleric arrested after allegedly asking officer to have sex at a privatelocation
Sep. 13, 2007

The charge against a Boca Raton Episcopal priest who was arrested in a sexsting operation in a Waynesville, N.C. park restroom may violate hisconstitutional rights, according to lawyers for the ACLU and Lambda Legal.

Fr. Michael Penland was charged on June 28 with "soliciting for a crimeagainst nature" in Waynesville Recreation Park after he allegedly asked anundercover officer to go home with him and have sex. On Sept. 5, EpiscopalBishop Leo Frade suspended Fr. Penland from his priestly duties at St.Gregory's Episcopal Church in Boca Raton.

"The charge is brazenly unconstitutional," said Robert Rosenwald, an ACLUlawyer with the Florida chapter's LGBT project, who examined the policereport.

Penland was issued a citation after he allegedly followed an undercoverdetective home in his car after soliciting him for sex in a public bathroom.He was among seven men arrested by the Waynesville Police Department in asummer-long sting operation dubbed Operation Summer Heat. Police did notrelease information about the arrests until Sept. 5 in order to avoidtipping off people about the sting, according to media reports.

According to the arrest report, Penland followed Det. Tyler Trantham into apublic restroom around 11:30 a.m. and asked Trantham to go home with him tohave sex.


Laying down in gay country land the law

Serving as DJs and dance instructors, Outlawz rule at Scandals Saloon
Sep. 13, 2007

South Florida might seem to be an unlikely place to find strapping cowboys,but Wilton Manors has become a popular destination for cowboys from acrossthe region. In fact, at Scandals Saloon in Wilton Manors, the Outlawz aredoing their best to spread the country-western lifestyle, one dance at atime.

The Outlawz - Chuck, Tim, Roger and Ron - have made a name for themselves asentertainers. Where there's a two-step, one or more Outlawz are likely to benearby. There's also an honorary Outlaw, Bill Krauter, a retired West CoastDJ who creates many of the group's special mixes that have become an Outlawzsignature.

"The four of us were originally part of another country group in town," saysCowboy Tim, spokesman for the group. "We were disappointed in theshortcomings in the country scene at the time, so we decided to bandtogether and do what we could to get the ball rolling in South Florida. Wetook the name Outlawz since we were sort of controversial at the time forleaving the group and, well, it sort of stuck."

The Outlawz are not a "membership organization" per se, but see themselvesas part of the staff of Scandals, serving as the DJs for open dancing onFriday and Saturday nights and providing country-western dance instructionon Mondays and Tuesdays.

"Prior to that, we acted more as promoters," Cowboy Tim explains. "Westarted in 2003 with the End Up [bar] in Davie. We then went to Sea Monsterand, later, Manhattan South. When Scandals opened up, we were actuallyworking at both bars for a short time."


Court Rules NYS Gay Married Benefits Legal

by Newscenter Staff
Posted: September 11, 2007 - 1:30 pm ET

(Albany, New York) An Albany court has dismissed a challenge to a decisionby New York State's Comptroller that treats out-of-state marriages ofsame-sex couples the same as any other legal marriage in terms of benefitsafforded to state employees through the New York State Retirement System.

In 2004 in response to an inquiry by a gay state employee wanting to know ifhis retirement benefits would cover his family if he went to Canada tolegally marry his partner, New York State Comptroller at the time, AlanHevesi, stated that, "Based on current law, the retirement system willrecognize a same-sex Canadian marriage in the same manner as an opposite-sexNew York marriage under the principle of comity. That principle has beenlegal practice pursuant to New York Court of Appeals rulings for many years."

The New York State Comptroller is the sole trustee of the retirementsystem - the biggest state plan in the country - which includes 334,000retirees and 648,000 current employees.

Hevesi's interpretation of the law matched that of then Attorney General,now Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who also said that, under the state's current laws,same-sex couples who legally married in other jurisdictions should betreated as any other married couple in New York State.

more . . . . .


Official: Internet Fueling HIV Among Hong Kong Gays

by Newscenter Staff
Posted: September 12, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Hong Kong) Hong Kong's health director says that the internet has helpedfuel a spike in the number of cases of HIV among gay men in the territory.

P.Y. Lam told a meeting of the World Health Organization that gay men aremore frequently using the internet to meet for casual sex and that often menwho meet this way do not practice safe sex.

Lam told the WHO, at a meeting in South Korea, that the health departmenthas identified "three clusters" of HIV over the past two years that weretraced to internet cruising.

In one cluster alone, he said, more than 50 gay men had contracted HIV fromone man.

"In this information age they find new ways to meet each other and haverelationships sometimes on a very casual basis, while condom use is verylow," Lam later told Hong Kong radio station RTHK in a telephone interview.

more . . . . .


Clinton Goes Postal

by The Associated Press
Posted: September 13, 2007 - 9:00 am ET

(Washington) The National Association of Letter Carriers endorsed Sen.Hillary Rodham Clinton for president on Wednesday, saying the New Yorksenator has the strength and experience to bring change to the White House.

"She's ready to lead this country from her first day in the White House,"union president William H. Young said.

Clinton will officially accept the endorsement at an event at the union'sheadquarters later Wednesday.

"These hardworking men and women are part of the fabric of every communityin America, and they deserve an advocate in the White House," Clinton said.

Young called Clinton the "runaway winner" when they surveyed their memberson the presidential primary candidates.

"In the primary elections next year, you can count on letter carriers todeliver for Senator Clinton, and I am confident that in the years to come,President Hillary Clinton will deliver for every citizen throughoutAmerica," Young said.

The National Association of Letter Carriers represents 300,000 active andretired U.S. Postal Service city delivery carriers.

The union on Wednesday ratified a new five-year contract agreement with theU.S. Postal Service covering its 222,000 active mail carriers. The contractincludes general wage increases of 8.85 percent over the term of theagreement, along with semiannual cost-of-living adjustments and newprotections against the Postal Service contracting out letter carrier workto private firms and individuals.

The National Association of Letter Carriers gave $1.7 million incontributions to federal candidates and parties in 2006, with 89 percent toDemocrats who took back control of the House and Senate, according to theCenter for Responsive Politics. In 2004, the union gave $1.4 million topolitical candidates and parties, with 81 percent going to Democrats.

Rural letter carriers are represented by a different union.

This is Clinton's fourth union endorsement. She already has been endorsed bythe United Transportation Union, the International Association of Machinistsand Aerospace Workers and the Transportation Communication Union.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News,0,5421076.story?coll=la-home-center

Gov. vetoes bid to put Iraq issue on state ballot

By Nancy Vogel, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
September 12, 2007

SACRAMENTO -- Shortly before midnight Tuesday, Gov. Arnold Schwarzeneggervetoed legislation that would have made California the first state to voteon whether President Bush should immediately withdraw troops from Iraq.

In a veto message, Schwarzenegger called the issue divisive and difficult,and urged Californians to weigh in by casting ballots for president in theFebruary primary election.

"There is no louder message Californians can send to Washington on the Iraqwar than who should lead our nation," he wrote. "Placing a non-bindingresolution on Iraq on the same ballot, when it carries no weight orauthority, would only further divide voters and shift attention from othercritical issues that must be addressed."

Schwarzenegger vetoed SB 924 by Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata(D-Oakland). The bill sparked lengthy debate in the Legislature and passedwithout any Republican votes. It would have asked voters whether Bush should"end the United States occupation of Iraq and immediately begin the safe andorderly withdrawal of United States forces."

Perata said he was disappointed that Schwarzenegger would not allow peopleto express their opinion on "the biggest issue of this time."

"There is an old saying," he said. "For evil to triumph it just requiresgood men to do nothing."

more . . . .


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Craigslist Is the Newest Target in the War on Prostitution

By Liliana Segura, AlterNet
Posted on September 12, 2007, Printed on September 13, 2007

Forget Larry Craig.

It might have taken one foot-tapping senator in an airport bathroom stall tomake it fresh news, but the undercover sex sting has been a media favoritelong before anyone outside Idaho heard the name of the ruined senator. Withphenomena like "To Catch a Predator" and the steady outing of high-profilepastors and politicians keeping it in the public consciousness, sordid sexis big news these days.

Now law enforcement is increasingly focused on the Internet in going aftersex crimes; with parents nationwide convinced their child will be the nextto be sexually predatored, perhaps it was only a matter of time before theirtarget would become ... Craigslist.

On Sept. 5, the New York Times ran a front-page story: "As Prostitutes Turnto Craigslist, Law Takes Notice." According to the piece, the Nassau CountyPolice Department has been trolling Craigslist's Erotic Services section --abeled "the high-tech 42nd St." by one police chief -- since last year,responding to ads and even posting false ads to lure unsuspecting clients.It's a low-energy, higher-tech sex sting, and the result has been over 70arrests, and counting.

The Times story came at the heels of a story in the AtlantaJournal-Constitution, which reported on local mayor Shirley Franklin'sattempt to hold Craigslist responsible for promoting child prostitution."Children are being marketed through Craigslist," the mayor announced,calling on the site to remove its sexually suggestive material. Adding thatCraigslist is a "place where men meet men to arrange sexual encounters inthe bathrooms at Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport," thestory elicited predictable outrage and denunciations.

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Profiles in Patriotism

Chief Hospital Corpsman, USN, Ret.
James Patrick Donovan
President of American Veterans For Equal Right
by Denny Meyer

Chief Hospital Corpsman James P. Donovan, United States Navy Retired, is acommon hero of the American Heartland. Born and raised in the verdantKentucky hills, he served his country for 24 years. Although he has livedin central Illinois farm country for decades, when he gets perturbed hispure high pitched marked bluegrass twang comes through loud and clear. Itsa beautiful sound like a country violin at a square dance.

His family background is pure Americana. His father, son of Irishimmigrants, served in the US Army in WWI, and his eldest brother served inWorld War II; his dad was a Corporal in the US Army, and served in France.His brother served aboard minesweepers in the US Navy as a Machinists MateSecond Class (E5), acting Chief. Another brother served in the Korean War,also in the Navy, as a Seaman Boatswain's Mate. Like so many other youngmen, upon graduating from high school, it was the most natural thing for himto follow his brothers into the Navy. According to Jim, the "romance of theNavy" was something he'd dreamed about throughout his youth. "I used to wearmy brother's old dress blue jumper sometimes, little realizing that I wouldeventually have it re-piped and wear it for real on active duty!" Perhapsone has to have been a sailor, as we have, to understand the allure andsatisfaction of putting on that special uniform and being a member of theUnited States Navy on a steel gray vessel at sea.

Being gay had nothing to do with it. He hardly knew what the word meant,nor understood who he was at that point in his young life in the early1960s. It was not until he was in the Navy and stationed at the Navy'slargest and oldest of hospitals in Portsmouth VA that he met others likehimself that it all became clear and a complete life could be realized.That was the most common experience of patriotic volunteer Vietnam Era vetswho discovered themselves while in the service of their country.

more . . . . .


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Evangelicals respond to gay equality judgment

12th September 2007 11:20

The Evangelical Alliance called on Christian evangelicals in the UK to"think about their responsibilities to other people created in the image ofGod" following yesterday's court decision on the Sexual OrientationRegulations.

The High Court in Northern Ireland ruled that a provision of the SexualOrientation Regulations must be removed.

Mr Justice Weatherup said that a provision that protects LGB people fromharassment when accessing goods and services should be set aside.

He upheld the rest of the regulations.

Christians who provide goods and services will not be prosecuted for sayingthey are unwilling to provide them to LGB people.

more . . . . .


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Daily Queer News

Stonewall dismisses "Pyrrhic victory" for Christians

11th September 2007 15:05
Tony Grew

Gay equality organisation Stonewall said today that the ruling of the HighCourt in Belfast on the Sexual Orientation Regulations would not diminishthe protections for LGB people in the UK.

Chief executive Ben Summerskill told

"We are delighted that the court has upheld the regulations as theycurrently exist across the rest of Britain."

Mr Justice Weatherup said that a provision which protects LGB people fromharassment when accessing goods and services should be set aside.

The harassment provision is only in the Northern Ireland regulations and notthose governing the rest of the UK.

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Transsexual's rights were violated by Lithuania

11th September 2007 13:44
Tony Grew

A Lithuanian transsexual has won a case at the European Court of HumanRights over claims that he has been blocked from completing his gendertransition.

The seven judges also ruled that Lithuania must implement new legislation ongender reassignment within three months or pay damages.

The 28-year-old has been undergoing gender reassignment since 1998 includinghormone treatment and breast removal, but is now being blocked from moretreatment because of the laws in Lithuania.

He says he suffers daily embarrassment because he is still described as awoman on official documents.

Patricia Prendiville, executive director of the International Lesbian andGay Association Europe, said:

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Comment: Peter Tatchell on 9/11

12th September 2007 16:21

Peter Tatchell

Six years after 9/11, the American public have still not been provided witha full and truthful account of the single greatest terror attack in UShistory.

What they got was a turkey. The 9/11 Commission was hamstrung by officialobstruction. It never managed to ascertain the whole truth of what happenedon 11 September 2001.

The Chair and Vice Chair of the 9/11 Commission, respectively ThomasKean and Lee Hamilton, assert in their book, Without Precedent, that theywere "set up to fail" and were starved of funds to do a properinvestigation.

They also confirm that they were denied access to the truth and misled bysenior officials in the Pentagon and the FederalAviation Authority; and that this obstruction and deception led themto contemplate slapping officials with criminal charges.

Despite the many public statements by 9/11 Commissioners and staffmembers acknowledging they were repeatedly lied to, not a singleperson has ever been charged, tried, or even reprimanded, for lying to the9/11 Commission.

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

IRS Clears Anti-Gay Dobson, Focus on the Family

by Kilian Melloy
EDGE Dallas Contributor
Tuesday Sep 11, 2007

James Dobson, chairman of the anti-gay organization Focus on the Family, wascleared by the IRS of claims that his backing of Republican candidates inthe 2004 election was improper, given his organization's non-profit status. reported yesterday that the IRS found that Dobson's politicalactivities were carried out as an individual, and not as part of his dutiesfor Focus on the Family, which is a Christian religious group.

Dobson promptly took the IRS finding to his radio show, calling theaccusation an attack against Christian leaders who seek to speak publicly onissues of morality.

The investigation came about following complaints from two watchdogorganizations, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW),and the Citizens Project, which is based in Colorado Springs, the city inwhich Focus on the Family is also headquartered.

The complaints were filed with the IRS in 2005, and made allegations thatDobson had used the non-profit ministry's resources for politicalactivities. The complaints requested that Focus on the Family's tax-exemptstatus be reviewed.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

GLSEN Releases Research Brief Showing Benefits of Gay-Straight Alliances

Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) help make schools safer for all students andlikely play an integral role in mitigating the negative impact of bullyingand harassment on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students,according to a research brief released today by GLSEN, or the Gay, Lesbianand Straight Education Network.

As of today, 3,612 GSAs are registered with GLSEN from every state, PuertoRico and Washington D.C. GSAs are student clubs that seek to improve schoolclimate by addressing and reducing anti-LGBT bullying and harassment inschool.

GLSEN's research brief, which can be viewed at, is anexamination of GLSEN's research and other studies on GSAs in middle and highschools.

"This research brief provides proof of the enormous positive impactGay-Straight Alliances have on school climate," said Dr. Eliza Byard, GLSENInterim Executive Director. "First and foremost, all students are bulliedand harassed less often based on actual or perceived sexual orientation whena school has a GSA. LGBT students also demonstrate a greater sense of safetyand belonging in school and skip school less often."

The brief has four major findings:

1. The presence of GSAs may help to make schools safer for LGBTstudents by sending a message that biased language and harassmentwill not be tolerated.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

The Trevor Project Unveils Social Marketing Campaign to Prevent Suicide inLGBTQ Youth

By R. Prest

The Trevor Project, the non-profit organization that operates the nation'sonly around-the-clock suicide prevention helpline for gay and questioningyouth, has announced the launch of "Don't Erase Your Queer Future," a newonline social marketing campaign designed to expand and broaden theresources available to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning(LGBTQ) youth vulnerable to emotional distress and suicide. The overall goalof the campaign is to prevent suicide by promoting a culture that honors gayand lesbian achievement while encouraging queer youth to seek support whenneeded. The organization has launched a new website as the focal point ofthe campaign, the launch for which is timed to coincide with NationalSuicide Prevention Week (Sept. 9-15).

Specifically, the campaign uses quotations from, and portraits of, prominentgay men and lesbians from the past such as Oscar Wilde, Susan B. Anthony,Walt Whitman, Josephine Baker and Bayard Rustin, and asks viewers to ponderthe terrible impact if these gifted individuals had committed suicide.Quotations from these individuals are written on a chalkboard and thenslowly erased, pointing out that, if these extraordinarily talented peoplehad committed suicide, all of their successes and the invaluablecontributions they made to the arts, culture and society would have beenlost. The campaign also includes information about the personal and oftenlargely unknown struggles these individuals overcame during their lifetimes.

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

Womenfest Draws Thousands to Key West

By Ed Walsh

Overflow crowds of lesbians from all parts of the U.S. and the world packedKey West on Sept. 4-5 for its 21st annual Womenfest.

The weeklong celebration was highlighted by a street fair, pool parties, afilm festival and a group commitment ceremony.

About 4,000 women attended this year's festival, according to Steve Smith, asales manager for the Monroe County Florida Tourist Development Council.Smith also works with the gay business organization, the Key West BusinessGuild, to promote gay tourism to the city.

The popularity of Womenfest was evidenced by its overflow and sold-outvenues. Comic Suzanne Westenhoeffer's two shows quickly sold out, Key West'sGay and Lesbian Trolley Tour had to turn people away and the city's gayhotels, including the lesbian guesthouse Pearl's Rainbow, and the gay andlesbian mixed hotels, Alexander's Guesthouse and Big Ruby's Guesthouse, werepacked with women who were in for the week.

Smith noted that some of the mainstream hotels, including the Days Inn, werefilled to capacity in what would otherwise be a slow week in the islandcity.

Attendance was boosted this year through a $30,000 grant from the MonroeCounty Tourism Development Council. The Key West Business Guild sponsorsWomenfest and used the grant to air a television commercial in South Floridaand on cable TV and for print advertising. Smith estimated that attendancewas up by about 35% over last year.


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

British Comedian Booted from TV Show for Using Gay Slur

By Chrys Hudson

UK television network ITV has removed comic Jim Davidson from one of its hitreality shows, Hell's Kitchen, for making "unacceptable remarks" about gaypeople.

According to Reuters UK, the comedian used the term "shirt-lifter" during aheated exchange with another contestant on the show, which follows a groupof celebrities as they learn how to cook and serve their meals to diners ina packed restaurant.

In a statement made following the event, the TV network said it "does notcondone comments which could cause offence."

Davidson also released a statement, according to Reuters UK, in which hedenied being homophobic and added of his experience on the show: "I did findit very wearing and I must admit it did make me play up to the worst of myperceived image."


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

YouTube Censures Teenage Gay Kiss But Permits Gay Bashing Video

by Ambrose Aban
EDGE Dallas Contributor
Monday Sep 10, 2007

Visitors can readily see neo-Nazi propaganda but no same-sex smooches.YouTube has walked into a maelstrom that has put into question its purportedaims of not editing or censoring content. A video of two teenagers kissingwas removed from the the site, causing outrage among gay viewers andactivists. What has them even more riled is that a video was shown of twoother teenagers engaged in a gay bashing incident.

The site, which was purchased by Google for seven figures, is a bastion ofdo-it-yourself video. As the paradigm of online democracy, it is probablythe last place you'd suspect would be homophobic. But some are accusing thehugely popular site of subversely supporting homophibia via its policies.

People also wonder if the monster corporate parent isn't affecting thedecisions of its bratty offspring. "If YouTube had just passed its embryonicstage or just now only become the 'Net's latest little emperor without agood thinking-head on its shoulders, we can understand that," says gayactivist Xavier Francis. "But we cannot say the same for Google, its newparent, who bought it for $1.65 billion in stock not too long ago." Googleshould seek to differentiate between censorship and encouraging violence,racism and homophobia, he suggests.

The apparently innocuous video of two teenagers, Luke and Noah, kissing forfive seconds was reportedly removed from You Tube. The two young men havesaid that the video was submitted as proof of the special relationshipbetween them, showing their affection for each other and hoping to remindthe world that a kiss is just a kiss.

more . . . . .


Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News

On the (Gay) Radio

by Robert Nesti
EDGE National Arts & Entertainment Editor
Monday Sep 3, 2007

Ryan Jay and Caroline Hand of PRIDE Radio with Ryan & Caroline.For the longest time, radio has been dominated by conservative talk radio,drive-time shock jocks, pop music oldies, NPR, and sports programming-where,you may wonder, is the gay and lesbian presence in the medium?

Even NPR-considered the most inclusive of radio networks-lacks a significantongoing gay and lesbian presence. (Monologues by David Sedaris don't quitecut it.) What there is has been limited to localized, magazine-like programssuch as One in Ten, Boston's popular Sunday night broadcast heard onWFNX-FM. Radio, it seems, was locked in the past, slow to embrace the socialtrends that other mediums, specifically television and movies (and, to alesser extent) music, have embraced. Where was the gay Rush Limbaugh? (Okay,that's a scary thought; but you get the point.)

That may be why a recent announcement by Clear Channel that they areproducing a new radio show aimed specifically at gays and lesbians seemedmore than business as usual. The media giant, with considerable holdings interrestrial radio, satellite, and television has created, and is producingand marketing America's first nationally syndicated radio talk show targetedto the LGBT community - PRIDE Radio with Ryan & Caroline.

"We are committed to developing new talent," explained Jared Cohen,Coordinator for Clear Channel Content Research and Development. "Ryan andCaroline are radio's Will & Grace and Pride reflects their uniquesensibility, celebrating pop culture and all things entertainment."

The show-described in its press release as an innovative talk radio showfocusing on celebrity interviews, music, gossip, travel, entertainment andlifestyle trends-may not seem like revolutionary programming, but itindicates one of numerous developments in radio aimed at the gay and lesbianaudiences.

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