Saturday, August 25, 2007

GLBT DIGEST August 25, 2007

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Rainbow flag snub sparks human rights complaint
'There is some form of homophobia in the works there'
Last Updated: Friday, August 24, 2007 | 1:35 PM AT
CBC News

A gay rights group has filed a human rights complaint over the Town ofTruro's refusal to fly the rainbow flag.

Charles Thompson, with Truro Pride, said the discrimination complaintcentres on the fact the town council has agreed to fly flags for othercommunity organizations and groups.

"Which leads us to believe that there is some form of homophobia in theworks there," he told CBC News Friday.

Earlier this month, Truro town council voted 6-1 against raising therainbow-coloured flag to coincide with gay pride activities in PictouCounty.

Some councillors said the request from Truro Pride came in late and therewas no time for a debate. But Mayor Bill Mills said as a Christian he couldnot agree to the raise the flag.

Thompson said he was waiting for the town's mayor to contact his group toresolve the matter. But since that didn't happen, he said Truro Pride tookthe next step and filed the complaint with the Nova Scotia Human RightsCommission.


BANG Showbiz
Aug. 24, 2007 08:08 AM
George Michael helped homeless people write songs about poverty whileserving his community service.

The 'Careless Whisper singer - who was sentenced to 100 hours service inJune for being unfit for driving through tiredness and taking prescriptiondrugs - gave residents a masterclass in songwriting during his time atLondon's St Mungo's homeless hostel last Monday.

One resident at the Euston shelter, Andrew Gilmour, told Britain's DailyExpress newspaper, "When he arrived, nobody knew who he was. He was in abaseball cap, shirt and trainers and spoke to anyone and everyone and didn'tact special.

"He was dressed down more than me. But then he helped people write songs,some about poverty, some about people in hostels."

Andrew believes the 44-year-old star's visit had a positive effect on allthe residents.


Lawyers Attack In IRS Sex Change Case
Govt. Disallowed Woman's Deduction
POSTED: 5:45 am EDT August 24, 2007

BOSTON -- Lawyers for the woman who deducted the $25,000 cost of her sexchange operation on her federal taxes attacked the credibility of ahigh-profile government witness on Thursday who testified that genderidentity disorder is not a disease.

The Internal Revenue Service disallowed Rhiannon O'Donnabhain's deduction,claiming that her sex change operation was cosmetic, and not medicallynecessary.

O'Donnabhain is suing the IRS to get the deduction accepted in a otentiallyprecedent setting case that could affect thousands of people a year in theU.S. who undergo similar operations.

Both sides rested their cases on Thursday before a tax court judge who willdecide the case.

O'Donnabhain, 63, said her case is about more than just money.


LA Fitness sued for alleged assault, slander
Plaintiff claims anti-gay intimidation at local gym
Aug. 24, 2007

An Atlanta attorney says he was subjected to an anti-gay diatribe and thethreat of assault during a visit to his health club. Now, Seth Persily, whois gay, is suing L.A. Fitness in Fulton County Superior Court for damagesover the alleged incident to sharpen the point that gay men and lesbiansneed not stand for abuse.

"I don't think any company, especially ones with a large gay clientele,should tolerate that kind of behavior from its employees," Persily said in astatement released through his attorney, Steve Koval.

Persily said he had been a member of the Lenox/Buckhead location of L.A.Fitness for about six months on July 18, the date of his last visit, whenthe events described in the lawsuit unfolded.

The suit, filed Aug. 7, accuses L.A. Fitness International and a gymemployee identified only as "Willy" of assault, slander and inflictingemotional distress on Persily.

Calls to the Lenox/Buckhead gym and L.A. Fitness International executiveoffices in Irvine, Calif., were not returned by press time. No response tothe lawsuit had been filed on behalf of L.A. Fitness by Aug. 21. SeveralAtlanta L.A. Fitness locations, including Ansley Mall, are very popular withgay patrons.


Mayor defends Halloween shutdown
by Matthew S. Bajko

Defending his decision to shut down the Castro Halloween party this year,Mayor Gavin Newsom said last week that he fears allowing the event tocontinue could lead to the death of a partygoer.

"We made the decision so we don't have something tragic happen. It is almostpredictable that somebody would get killed this year. We have already hadeverything else happen," Newsom told Castro residents and merchantsfollowing a meeting held Thursday, August 16 with business owners in thecity's gay neighborhood. "This thing is just huge and it is held in a verysmall area. I am just scared someone is going to get killed."

Newsom acknowledged that the city cannot prevent everyone from showing up inthe Castro come Halloween night. But he said the city can try to persuade asmany people as possible not to show up.

"No. We can't shut it down this year. People are going to come down here,"said Newsom. "The idea here is to mitigate the crowds and send a messagethat the Castro is not open."

Newsom arrived at the Eureka Valley Recreation Center as the meeting hadjust ended. He spoke on the steps to the building surrounded by critics whohave complained about the lack of a public process in planning for thisyear's Halloween, as well as merchants equally upset with City Hall due tothe way civic leaders have handled preparations for this year's holiday.

Newsom attacked those who "want to politicize" the debate over Halloween,though he conceded "everyone has a right to be upset about this."


Judge rules gay porn actors will be tried for murder of film executive
By Mallory Simon, Court TV
Fri Aug 24, 3:41 PM ET

(C ourt TV) - Two gay porn actors will go to trial on charges they murdereda rival porn executive in a dispute over a coveted actor after a judge'sruling Thursday.

District Magisterial Judge James E. Tupper ruled that, based on thetestimony of 14 witnesses during a two-day hearing, there was enoughevidence against Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes for both men to go totrial. They are charged with murdering Cobra Video executive and gay pornkingpin Bryan Kocis.

"It sucks," Harlow Cuadra said to reporters when asked how he felt as heleft the courtroom. "I didn't do it. I didn't kill that man."

Police say Cuadra and Kerekes killed Kocis because of a dispute involvingactor Sean Lockhart, known in the adult film industry as Brent Corrigan.

Police say Cuadra, 25, and Kerekes, 33, went to Kocis' Dallas, Pa., homeJan. 24 and slashed his throat, nearly decapitating him. After he was dead,they stabbed him 28 times and burned his body and home to hide the crime,according to police documents.


Florida Republican Pleads Not Guilty To Gay Sex Solicitation Charge
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 24, 2007 - 3:00 pm ET

(Tampa, Florida) State Rep. Bob Allen (R) has pleaded not guilty to chargeshe offered an undercover police officer cash for sex.

Allen, a longtime foe of LGBT rights in Florida, was not in court - optinginstead to submit his plea in writing.

His attorney is expected to ask a judge on Monday to dismiss the case. Ifthat is unsuccessful, the lawyer said he will submit a motion to have anaudio take recording suppressed of an interview Allen gave to policefollowing his arrest.

In taped statements made by Allen to police following his arrest andreleased by the force Allen admits to soliciting the male officer but claimsthat it was the result of being nervous by the high number of black men inthe park.


Insults turn violent outside bar; Man assaulted in front of downtown gay andlesbian night club
Joel Desbois
Friday, August 24, 2007 - 09:00

Local News - The staff and patrons of Zig's, Sudbury's only gay and lesbianbar, are used to the insults and name-calling.

It's rare, however, that the homophobia turns violent, but that's whathappened last Friday night to a young Sudbury man. Brent Jason, 26, says hesuffered three fractures to his left cheekbone when he was confronted by agroup of passersby outside the Elgin Street bar. Jason was at Zig's bar -where he regularly works as a casual dancer - at 11:30 p.m. with three ofhis friends when a passerby made a comment about one of his friends.

The comments, Jason says, were about his female friend's physical appearanceand were followed by a homophobic comment about how they should "steal" herfrom her boyfriend, who was also among Jason's group.

After the brief altercation, the passersby started to leave, but a man fromthe group looked back to see Jason looking at them, turned around and cameback.

"They started walking away and I sort of took a few steps in theirdirection, just watching them and glaring at them," Jason says. "Then one ofthem came back towards me and said, 'what are you looking at, goof?' and Iwas like, 'oh God, nothing, so just keep going.' "

From there, Jason and Crystal Abouhanna, 26, another friend, said the manbegan yelling profanities, mocking Jason's sexuality. After another briefverbal altercation, where the man threatened to "knock out" Jason, the grouponce again started to walk away.



Aussie former "ex-gay" leaders denounce conversion therapy

Five former leaders of "ex-gay" ministries Down Under have publiclycondemned converstion/reparative therapy, according to the Sydney StarObserver.

The Aussie leaders said they were inspired to make their comments by therecent apologies of three former "ex-gay" leaders at an "ex-gay" survivorsconference in Los Angeles.

"There was not one person that I met or worked with who, in any genuine way,achieved the fundamental transformation from homosexual to heterosexual,"Paul Martin, former leader of Exodus in Melbourne, told the Observer.

According to some of the former "ex-gay" leaders, conversion therapyteachers in Australia believe men become gay because they had emotionallydistant fathers. Their therapy included "minders," who would follow theenrollees to make sure they were behaving themselves.

"Some people have suicided," Anthony Venn Brown, who spent 22 years tryingto be straight, told the newspaper. "But most people have now come to termswith their sexuality. There is no success rate [with conversion therapy]." (The Advocate)


Fortune 500 companies: 92% provide gay nondiscrimination policies

Equality Forum, a Philadelphia-based GLBT rights organization, has announcedthat more than 92% (463) of the 2007 Fortune 500 companies include sexualorientation in their employment nondiscrimination policies.

According to the press release, when Equality Forum began contacting Fortune500 companies in the fall of 2003, only 323 companies-or about 65%- providedsexual orientation protections. Equality Forum, along with professors LouisThomas of University of Pennsylvania and Ian Ayres of Yale Law School,contacted 177 CEOs and human resources directors of companies that didn'toffer nondiscrimination policies. By the fall of 2004, 405 (81%) had adoptedprotections.

Of the 37 Fortune 500 companies that have not adopted protections, 38% (14companies) are headquartered in Texas, the press release noted.

A Gallup poll in May found that 89% of U.S. citizens believe that gays andlesbians should have protection against workplace discrimination. (TheAdvocate)


D.C. pride organizers receive refund for security fees

The Washington, D.C., city government is refunding its annual gay pridefestival organizers more than $14,000 in fees that were paid fpr policeovertime and extra security costs for this year's event. After city councilmember Phil Mendelson raised questions about the fee, Darrell Darnell of thecity's Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency refunded the fee,according to the Washington Blade.

The returned fee went to the Whitman-Walker Clinic, the chief sponsor andorganizer of the Capital Pride parade and festival. (The Advocate)


Minister guilty for role in gay weddings

A Presbyterian minister was found guilty of violating church law forofficiating the weddings of two lesbian couples, the minister's defense teamsaid Friday.

A regional judicial committee of the Presbyterian Church (USA) ruled 6-2that while the Reverend Jane Spahr of San Rafael, Calif., ''acted withconscience and conviction,'' her actions were still at odds with thechurch's constitution, her defense team said in a statement.

The ruling, delivered late Thursday to lawyers for Spahr and the church,reversed a lower court's decision in March 2006 that found Spahr actedwithin her rights as an ordained minister when she married the couples in2004 and 2005.

Spahr was the first minister of her faith to be tried for officiating theweddings of gay couples. She has since retired. (AP)


Gays, allies mobilize to protect Oregon laws

A group that has fought antigay initiatives in two states by publicizingpetition-signers' names this week extended its efforts to Oregon, where tworecently passed LGBT civil rights laws are under attack.

When a marriage supporter in Oregon contacted Aaron Toleos, codirector ofMassachusetts's, the group added that state to itsgrowing list of battlegrounds. This week promised tolaunch a new Web site that will list the names and addresses of peoplewho've signed petitions to put a measure before Oregon voters to repeal tworights bills.

Such petitions are public records, as many signers in Massachusetts andFlorida found to their chagrin, Toleos told

The two Oregon bills, passed by the legislature this spring and signed May 9by Gov. Ted Kulongoski, create strong domestic partnerships for Oregon gaymen and lesbians and outlaw discrimination against LGBT people in theworkplace, public accommodations, and housing.

The Constitution Party and Restore America are two known groups behind thepush to invalidate the Oregon Family Fairness Act (House Bill 2007) and TheOregon Equality Act (Senate Bill 2).


August 23, 2007
Police: Allen initiated station talk

Rep. Bob Allen initiated the talk in which he explained the "hugemisunderstanding" at a park men's room to assistant Titusville police chiefJohn Lau -- statements Allen's attorneys now want suppressed.

That's according to a statement by Lau, released Wednesday as part of theevidence in Allen's sex-solicitation case. Allen's attorneys say thepolitician had not been read his Miranda rights, despite asking earlier tospeak with a lawyer. Allen has pleaded not-guilty.

Excerpts from the assistant chief's statement:

"... I entered the booking room with a digital recorder in my front pocketand approached Mr. Allen. I acknowledged Mr. Allen by shaking his hand andasking him if he remembered me from a benefit we met at approximately oneyear prior. Mr. Allen first said he wanted to compliment our officersbecause the were just doing their job and he appreciated the good job thatthey do."

"Without any questions or prompting from me, Mr. Allen started to explain tome his side of events in the park. He stated that he walked into thebathroom at Spaceview Park and then walked out ... Mr. Allen then statedthat he walked back into the bathroom because he did not want to get struckby lightning from a storm front that was coming in."


Video Targets Giuliani's Positions on Gay Issues
Friday , August 24, 2007
By Greg Simmons

Zeroing in on concerns among some groups of gay voters, a videodirected by a New York writer, theater director and part-time politicalactivist takes aim at Rudy Giuliani and raises questions over the formermayor's support for gay Americans.

The 52-second video features three young, gay actors who all praiseGiuliani's record on gays - with more than a hint of sarcasm.

One, wearing yellow-tinted sunglasses, a white-brimmed hat and a blue shawlsays: "I am also so grateful for Rudy for the (New York) domesticpartnership plan that he has implemented in this city because I have had noless, no less, than five domestic partners."

. Click here to watch the video on

The purpose, says Ryan Davis, the director, is to point out what he callsthe disconnect between what Giuliani has stood for in the past and what heis saying on the campaign trail. Davis, a gay Democrat, never has supportedor worked for Giuliani (he worked for Howard Dean's presidential campaign in2004), but he said at least he used to respect Giuliani's positions.


Veto threat looms over hate crimes bill
White House mum on ENDA position; Pelosi expects fall vote
Aug. 24, 2007

Supporters of a gay- and transgender-inclusive hate crimes prevention billsay they will continue to call on the Senate to pass the legislation when itreturns from its summer recess next month despite a recent statement by theWhite House that President Bush plans to veto the bill.

A White House spokesperson told the Washington Times on Aug. 6 that thepresident would veto the Matthew Shepard Local Law Enforcement Hate CrimePrevention Act, even if it were attached to a defense authorization billthat the president wants Congress to pass.

"The qualifications [in the bill] are so broad that virtually any crimeinvolving a homosexual individual has the potential to have hate crimeselements," White House spokesperson Tony Fratto told the Times.

"The proposals they're talking about are not sufficiently narrow," the Timesquoted Fratto as saying.

The White House did not respond by press time this week to an inquiry by theBlade about what, if any, changes the president would like to see in thebill in order for him to sign it.


Semantics tricky when editing trans stories

Several weeks ago in the Blade, we ran a letter to the editor from MaraKeisling, executive director of the National Center for TransgenderEquality. She wrote to take us to task for the way an AP news brief about atransgender prisoner was edited.

I only became aware of the letter when I saw the page galley which passed bymy desk to be proofed. I would have liked to have made a few editor's notesin response to it then, but the page was already done and time didn't thenpermit me to research the matter and address Keisling's concerns.

I was reminded of the issue again this week when I contacted Keisling abouta story I wrote about a woman who was mistaken for a man and sent to the men's
unit of the D.C. Jail. I called Keisling, who graciously took my call thoughshe was on vacation, to get a transgender perspective on prison issues.Although I don't know Keisling well, I've seen her quoted and heard herspeak often enough to realize she does know what she's talking about. I haveno doubt, in fact, that her knowledge of transgender issues far exceeds myown.

However I do want to share a few thoughts that occurred to me after herletter to the editor ran that I think are valid, and also explain why theoriginal AP brief was edited the way it was.

The brief that Keisling wrote about ran in our July 6 edition and, under aheadline that said "Inmate's bid for sex-change surgery draws big costs,"told of a "Boston man serving a life prison sentence" and was about whetherthis person should be entitled to get a "sex-change operation at taxpayer'sexpense." The inmate has twice sued the Massachusetts Correction Departmentclaiming that its refusal to allow the operation violates the EighthAmendment protection against cruel and unusual punishment.


School Promises Army Of Conservative Christian Lawyers
by The Associated Press
Posted: August 24, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Baton Rouge, Louisiana) Louisiana College plans to establish a law schoolwith a "biblical worldview" that aims to train defenders of conservativeChristian values.

Louisiana College, a 1,000-student school in Pineville, expects to hire alaw dean next year and enroll up to 40 students in 2009, eventually buildingenough capacity to enroll 300 students. The school will seek accreditationfrom the American Bar Association.

Other conservative Christian law schools include Liberty University Schoolof Law, founded by the late Rev. Jerry Falwell, and Regent University Schoolof Law, founded by televangelist Pat Robertson. Both those schools are inVirginia.

The Louisiana College law school will be named for Judge Paul Pressler, aleader in the conservative takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention overthe last few decades. He served in Texas on the state's district court andappeals court.

Louisiana College, founded in 1906, is run by trustees chosen by theLouisiana Baptist Convention and requires faculty members accept Christ astheir savior.


Groups Denounce Appearances By Anti-Gay Reggae Artists In NYC
by The Associated Press
Posted: August 25, 2007 - 6:30 am ET

(New York City) A reggae festival in New York which was created to promotepeace among cultures is being denounced by gay and lesbian groups forallowing performers with a history of anti-gay lyrics.

The Reggae Carifest, which will be held Saturday at Randall's Island, in theEast River, promises performances by Buju Banton and Bounty Killer, amongseveral other acts at the daylong event. Gay and lesbian activists areplanning to protest the performers outside the show to educate sponsors andconcertgoers on the dangers of anti-gay lyrics, said Rashid Robinson, aspokesman for the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, GLAAD. He saidthe performers have a right to free speech, but so do protest groups.

``We as an organization value free speech. It gives us the right to stand upto vulgar anti-gay lyrics which promote violence,'' he said.

Earlier this week, hip-hop radio station Power 105.1 quietly withdrew itssponsorship of the event. The station, owned by radio giant Clear ChannelCommunications, Inc., would not specify the reason, but a spokeswoman saidthe station does not usually play reggae, and never plays Banton or BountyKiller. The station had never planned to broadcast the show live.

Calls to record labels for Banton and Bounty Killer were not immediatelyreturned Friday. Concert promoter Team Legendary did not immediately returnmessages seeking comment.


The New York Times

August 25, 2007
Minister Guilty in Gay Marriage Case

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 24 (AP) - A Presbyterian minister was found guilty ofviolating church law for officiating the weddings of two lesbian couples,the minister's defense team said Friday.

A regional judicial committee of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) ruled 6 to2 that although the minister, the Rev. Jane Spahr of San Rafael, "acted withconscience and conviction," her actions were still at odds with the church'sconstitution, her defense team said in a statement.

The ruling, which was delivered late Thursday by certified mail to lawyersfor Ms. Spahr and the church, reverses a lower tribunal's decision in March2006 that she acted within her rights as an ordained minister when shemarried two lesbian couples in 2004 and 2005.

Ms. Spahr, 65, who in 1978 publicly stated that she is a lesbian, was thefirst Presbyterian minister tried for officiating the weddings of gaycouples.

Her legal team said it would appeal.

Ms. Spahr is retiring at the end of this month.


The New York Times

August 25, 2007
Experts: U.S. Childbirth Deaths on Rise
Filed at 7:21 a.m. ET

ATLANTA (AP) -- U.S. women are dying from childbirth at the highest rate indecades, new government figures show. Though the risk of death is verysmall, experts believe increasing maternal obesity and a jump in Caesareansections are partly to blame.

Some numbers crunchers note that a change in how such deaths are reportedalso may be a factor.

''Those of us who look at this a lot say it's probably a little bit ofboth,'' said Dr. Jeffrey King, an obstetrician who led a recent New Yorkstate review of maternal deaths.

The U.S. maternal mortality rate rose to 13 deaths per 100,000 live birthsin 2004, according to statistics released this week by the National Centerfor Health Statistics.

The rate was 12 per 100,000 live births in 2003 -- the first time thematernal death rate rose above 10 since 1977.


The Washington Post

Nowhere Man
Brian Epstein helped make the Beatles a phenomenon. Forty years after hisdeath, why is his contribution forgotten?
By Glenn Frankel
Sunday, August 26, 2007; W18

THE OLD WAREHOUSE DISTRICT AROUND MATHEW STREET IN CENTRAL LIVERPOOL IS ASSACRED TO BEATLES FANS AS THE VIA DOLOROSA IS TO CHRISTIANS. At one end isthe Cavern, the rebuilt but authentically dank former vegetable cellar wherethe band played 274 times in the early 1960s. Nearby is the Wall of Fame,where bronze disks commemorate each of Liverpool's No. 1 hit records; thestatue of the early John Lennon in trademark leather jacket; and the plaquesoutside the Grapes and the White Star, the blue-collar pubs where the boysand their mates hoisted many a cheap pint. But there's nothing to mark thenondescript storefront on Whitechapel Street that was once the North EndMusic Store, known as NEMS, a record shop and appliance emporium owned byHarry Epstein and his wife, Queenie.

It was from this shop that their first-born son, Brian, set out just beforenoon on November 9, 1961, to catch the lunch-hour show at the Cavern a fewhundred yards away. He made his way past a queue of teenage girls inbeehives and boys in skin-tight drain-pipe trousers, and down 18 damp stonesteps into the catacombs to check out four sweaty young men playing guitarsand drums. .........

......... He was a gay man in an era when homosexuality was illegal, and heled a classic double life, lying about his sexuality even while pursuingmen, gay and straight, with reckless abandon. He left no wife or children toprotect his legacy or promote his name. The Beatles themselves, afterBrian's death, grew increasingly critical of his management. A handful ofdevoted friends have mounted a campaign in recent years to induct him intothe Rock and Roll Hall of Fame -- so far to no avail.


The Washington Post

About That Vote By the Lutherans On Gay Clergy
Saturday, August 25, 2007; B09

Below are excerpts from "On Faith," an Internet feature sponsored by TheWashington Post and Newsweek. Each week, more than 50 figures from the worldof faith engage in a conversation about an aspect of religion. This week,panel members were asked: "What do you think of the Evangelical LutheranChurch in America's vote to urge its bishops to refrain from discipliningclergy who are in "mutual, chaste and faithful committed same-genderrelationships"?

God Embraces Faithful Relationships

Fifty years from now, most religious communities will look back withastonishment on the controversy over same-sex relations the way we do todayon yesterday's bans on miscegenation.

A substantial majority of Americans favor marriage or civil unions. Growingnumbers of church members favor recognition of gay marriage, support civilrights for gays and object to discrimination against gays in the workplace.It is no wonder that these tens of millions of church members feelincreasingly comfortable with clergy who are in committed faithfulrelations, whether heterosexual or same-sex. It is no wonder they supporttheir religious leaders. Prejudice and discrimination are irreconcilablewith the religious values of most Americans.

-- Rabbi David Saperstein, director, Religious Action Center of ReformJudaism

Clear Instructions, Clear Choices

The Evangelical Lutheran Church bishops have embraced trendiness andabandoned the very scriptures that are their basis for evangelizing. Ifthese bishops choose to violate God's instruction book, church members havetwo choices, should they wish to continue to honor the authority ofscripture and its Author: They can remove the bishops from office or theycan leave the denomination. To remain in the denomination and do nothingmakes members co-conspirators in the bishops' apostasy.

-- Cal Thomas, syndicated political columnist



South Florida
Naugle swamped with e-mail as gay controversy rolls on
By Brittany Wallman
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
August 25, 2007


In tiny Columbia, Ky., Mayor Jim Naugle has a small fan club. Lee and KathyKrug wrote to ask him for a "signed photograph or poster." It "would occupyan honored place in our home," they promised, "and we will tell all who askabout it (and those who don't) what you are so courageously doing."

Here on the home front, Elaine Schulze is so happy with the mayor, she hunga banner on her day care center thanking him "from the children of FortLauderdale."

As the mayor is pilloried by local officials, gay residents and activists asa "bigot" and "homophobe'' for his recent comments about gays, his e-mailfile bulges with support. From all over Fort Lauderdale, far-flung citiesacross the United States and as far as Ireland people are patting the mayoron the back, electronically.

Thousands of e-mails poured into the mayor's in-box. The South FloridaSun-Sentinel requested e-mails to and from the mayor about the latestcontroversies, and received 6,475 electronic missives to review.


The Miami Herald

Posted on Sat, Aug. 25, 2007
Many have set back the cause of women

So we gather once more to pay homage to our foremothers by celebrating Aug.26, the anniversary of the passage of suffrage. What a year it's been sincewe last met. We've seen the first woman speaker of the House, the firstwoman president of Harvard University, and who can forget Bill Clinton,striving to become the first First Laddie?

Nevertheless, we continue our time-honored tradition, celebrating this dayby announcing the cherished Equal Rites Awards to those who have laboredover the last 12 months to set back the cause of women. As always, ourone-woman committee worked hard to sift through all the candidates. Thus,without further ado, the envelopes please:

. We begin by looking to Japan where the Abe government wins the Knights inTarnished) Armor Prize. There, the prime minister refused to apologize forthe Japanese army's use of ''comfort women'' as sexual slaves in World WarII. That was after his health minister called women ''baby-makingmachines.'' And finally, the bodyguard for his gender-equality minister wasarrested for molesting a college student on a train. We send the land of therising sun a sunset clause.

. What can we give the winner of this year's International Ayatollah Award?Our man is Ezzat Attiya, the creative Egyptian cleric who issued a fatwasaying that there was one way around the religious taboo against unmarriedmen and women working together. Women can breast-feed their male co-workersand legally become family. We would offer Attiya a special breast pump toaccompany his fatwa, but we don't want him to milk the idea.

. Ah, but in some pockets of the Middle East, there is progress towardgender equality. Take Iran, winner of our Dubious Equality Award. Why, justlast month a man was stoned to death for adultery. We send the judges therean en graved citation for equal brutality.

. Unfortunately, we must return home for the Patriarch of the Year Prize. Itgoes, with disappointment, to Justice Anthony Kennedy, whose opinionrestricting abortions rested on the retro notion that women needed to beprotected from ''regret,'' ''grief'' and ''sorrow,'' even if it meantprotecting them from their rights. We send the paternalistic justice a hookto bring him back to the 21st century.



Local 10 News
S. Florida

WPLG Editorial: Naugle Should Step Down (8/25/07)
Fort Lauderdale Mayor Spreading Bigotry

The time has come for Fort Lauderdale's mayor to step down.

Local 10 believes Jim Naugle's ongoing abrasive style, along with thisweek's public tirade, renders him ineffective as a public servant.

Instead of implementing policies to combat health and safety threats such asAIDS, the mayor used his position to spread bigotry.

This week, the mayor aligned himself with a local religious leader who hasalso in the past outraged the community with his controversial comments.

To be sure, there are people who support Naugle's anti-gay rhetoric, butthat does not validate Naugle's abrasive style from a man elected torepresent all the people.

Local Ten feels that Mayor Naugle should forfeit the remaining two years ofhis term.

That's our take on things. Let us know what you think.


August 24, 2007


Campaign to Ends AIDS national secretary Michael Rajner shouts downhomophobia in Florida

When Campaign to End AIDS National Secretary Michael Rajner attended Ft.Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle's press conference this Tuesday, he intended tobite his tongue and merely listen to Naugle and his cronies spew ignoranceabout the "public health crisis" of men having sex in bathroom stalls. Butwhen Faith2Action conservative radio host Janet Folger started laudingNaugle's family values, Rajner simply couldn't take it anymore.

Rajner pointed at Folger, Naugle and their allies from the group HealthyPublic Places and began loudly decrying their press conference. He thendeclared, "I am a person living with AIDS and what you are saying is wrong!How you're demonizing people is wrong!" A heated exchange followed withFolger calling for Rajner to be removed. After a fed-up Rajner walked off,Folger said, "We care for those in the homosexual community. A few yearsago, a gentleman came up to me and said, 'Janet, I was one of the peoplethat protested you. I was in the homosexual community, but because of yourboldness and ability to stand for the truth, I am now free fromhomosexuality.' So there is hope for change."

Rajner's disruption of the press conference earned widespread presscoverage, including a piece in the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel and segmentson local NBC, CBS and ABC affiliates. It also had the national gay pressbuzzing. Rajner appeared on the Michelangelo Signorile Show on SiriusSatellite Radio on Thursday. (Click here to watch the original pressconference.) "I'm proud to have been a disruption," Rajner told the Update."It needed to be done."



August 24, 2007

The following 7 links were forwarded fromGay and Lesbian SmartBrief

Anti-gay mayor roils Sunshine State,0,5727199.story

In his latest anti-gay salvo, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Mayor Jim Naugle joinedwith a group of conservative clergy to hold a press conference to sharetheir belief that gay sex poses physical and moral risks to participants.Some gay activists accused Naugle of "demonizing AIDS" and potentiallyfomenting hate crimes against LGBT people with his rhetoric. Sun-Sentinel(Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) (8/22)

Conservative group seeks to ban Arkansas adoptions

After failing in a bid to convince the Arkansas state legislature to pass aban on gay and lesbians becoming adoptive or foster parents, the ArkansasFamily Council is looking to put a similar measure up for a vote in theNovember 2008 general election. Arkansas News Bureau (8/24)

Some 5,500 ILWU members now eligible for partners' pensions

Some 5,500 Northern California members and retirees of the InternationalLongshore and Warehouse Union have won the right to leave their pensionbenefits to their surviving partner, thanks to the determination of MarvinBurrows, to receive his late partner's retirement payments. After Burrows'initial claims were rejected, the union decided to renegotiate its contractto make the disbursement possible. San Jose Mercury News/MediaNews (8/23)

Statue of ex-San Diego mayor to be focus of gay picket

Clergy have no First Amendment claim against hate crimes act,0,7046013.story?coll=lanews-

Both the language used in the hate crimes bill, and First Amendmentprecedent, would shield preachers from being charged with a hate crime forpreaching that homosexuality is a sin, according to University of Chicagolaw professor Geoffrey R. Stone. "There might be rational reasons toquestion the wisdom of this legislation," Stone writes. "But the argumentthat it endangers the 1st Amendment rights of these pastors is certainly notone of them." Los Angeles Times (free registration) (8/23)

Some Ugandans blame messenger for publicizing anti-gay attitudes

A U.S. journalist reporting on the struggles of Uganda's LGBT community togain some semblance of rights was the focus of a rally attended by hundredsof anti-gay activists who called for the deportation of 22-year-oldKatherine Roubos, an intern at the Daily Monitor. Roubos denied being a gayadvocate, saying: "I just present facts. None of my personal opinions are inthe stories." Yahoo!/Associated Press (8/21)

Why the unwrapped Advocate is a good thing

The decision by The Advocate to allow readers to decide whether they want toreceive their copy with or without a privacy wrapper is a "small step" inthe right direction toward a more open society, according to writer andcolumnist James Kirchick. USA TODAY (8/22)

He should think a little bit more before he speaks. But the scary part is,maybe he is thinking."--Oakland Park, Fla., Mayor Larry Gierer on fellowMayor Jim Naugle, as quoted in the Sun-Sentinel.


Forwarded from Sunshine Cathedral - Ft. Lauderdale

Homophobia is not Love
By the Reverend Durrell Watkins, M.A., M.Div.

A response to recent remarks made against the Fort Lauderdale Gay Communityby the Reverend Durrell Watkins, M.A., M.Div.

We read in the Christian bible "Slaves obey your masters..." and "Wivesshould be subordinate to their husbands as to the Lord." I do not believethat either of these biblical passages justifies the evils of slavery ormisogyny, and I do not believe that finding these sentences in the bible"proves" that God condoned slavery or that God privileges men over women. Inmy theology, any text that dehumanizes people cannot stand alone as if itwere a message from on High to be uncritically embraced. Similarly, when thebible is quoted to promote prejudice against gay and lesbian people, I mustobject.

The mayor of Fort Lauderdale continues his anti-gay verbal assaults. Butwhat concerns me even more is that religious leaders are suggesting that themayor is somehow speaking for God! It's an age-old trick for a group to saythat their enemies are also God's enemies, but I hope in the 21st centurynone of us will fall for that anymore.

Those who dare to suggest that God shares their homophobic prejudices claimthey are motivated by love. The targets of their inflammatory speech,however, probably disagree. You see, you can't judge me to be a sinner andthen claim to love me. You can't use language that dehumanizes me and claimit is for my good. As the saying goes, "Please don't spit on my boots andcall it rain." There may be a lot in this world I don't know, but thedifference between being loved and being condemned is easy enough to figureout.

Those who are spewing the homophobic rhetoric lately may believe they areright, and they are certainly entitled to their opinions, but they can'tbelieve that what they are doing is kind or loving. You see, according tothe very bible they use to justify their anti-gay rhetoric, "Love is patientand kind... [and] never rude..." (1 Corinthians 13:4-5).

Let's be clear - the venom being spewed at the gay community in FortLauderdale is not about love, righteousness, or even public safety. Therecent attacks are just what they appear to be: unkind, prejudicial,divisive remarks meant to justify homophobia; and homophobia is not love.


Friend & Foe
Aug. 23, 2007
Travel columnists Donald Pile and Ray William

Our Friends of the Week are syndicated travel columnists Donald Pile and RayWilliams. Pile and Williams are the authors of "Gay Travelers," a columnthat appears in more than 20 gay newspapers and on several websites.

In the press statement issued last week, Pile and Williams said they havereceived numerous e-mails from readers wondering if they should boycott FortLauderdale because of Mayor Jim Naugle's recent anti-gay remarks. They haveanswered those e-mails with a resounding no, they said in the press

"A boycott is not the answer. In fact, just the opposite should happen," theduo said. "You should intentionally make a point of visiting FortLauderdale.. A national boycott against Fort Lauderdale would only destroythe gay community there..."

Kudos to Pile and Williams, who visit Fort Lauderdale every year. Theyobviously understand the demographics of the area and realize that Naugledoes not speak for the Greater Fort Lauderdale area. While Fort Lauderdaleis one municipality, the area includes several other gay-friendlymunicipalities such as Wilton Manors and Oakland Park.



ILGA-Europe has published an update of its document -- "Freedom ofAssembly -- Diary of Events by Country". This sets out, for each of 11European countries where there have been problems with LGBT peopleexercising the right to freedom of assembly, a detailed history of eventsfrom 2000 onwards. It also includes a summary listing 12 key types of event(pride marches banned, violence against demonstrators, failure by the policeto protect demonstrators, failure by courts to uphold freedom of assembly,etc). This permits a rapid understanding of the kind of problems faced bypride organisers, and also some of the positive developments that have takenplace.

The document starts with an overview of events, summarising developmentseach year. From this a number of conclusions are reached:

* In most countries involved, particularly those in the EU, a fairly rapidprogress towards recognizing the right of the LGBT community to freedom ofassembly is possible. This progress results from a combination ofdetermined advocacy at national level, international support, particularlyfrom European parliamentarians and institutions, and support by the courts.

* Attempts to establish the right to freedom of assembly in aparticular country for the first time are almost invariably opposed by cityauthorities. As there are still many countries in Central, Eastern and SouthEastern Europe where there have been no Pride events, national andinternational campaigns to support LGBT freedom of assembly are likely tocontinue for many years.

* Where LGBT marches are permitted, where politicians and faithleaders avoid inflammatory language, and where the police provide properprotection, violent opposition ceases, or is much reduced, thusdemonstrating that the public order arguments used by some authorities injustifying the banning of marches is not generally valid.

a.. However, even in cities where a good track record of peaceful eventshas been established, a recurrence of violence cannot be ruled out,underlining the need for continual vigilance by organisers, city authoritiesand the police.

The report will be used, amongst other things, as input to the Legal Affairsand Human Rights Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council ofEurope, which is preparing a report on LGBT freedom of assembly.

The Diary of Events can be found at:


ILGA-Europe makes submission to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of
Europe on Suicidality among LGBT youth

The Social, Health and Family Affairs Committee of the ParliamentaryAssembly of the Council of Europe is preparing a report on child and teenagesuicide.

ILGA-Europe has submitted a report to the Committee drawing attention tothe need for governments to take action to address the factors which resultin a relatively high degree of suicidality among LGBT youth.

The report builds on earlier research by IGLYO and ILGA-Europe published ina document, "Social exclusion of young lesbian, gay, bisexual andtransgender people in Europe". It draws attention to the extensive evidenceof above average suicidality among LGBT youth, and to the finding that thisphenomenon is a consequence of the marginalisation, stigmatisation anddiscrimination which they face.

It demonstrates that, where governments, schools etc have taken steps tocounter these factors, significant improvements in the well-being of youngLGBT people can be achieved.

The report concludes that the measures needed to bring about theseimprovements are well understood, and that the main barriers to theirimplementation are likely to be lack of information or misinformation, andin some instances, opposition from the social forces and institutions whosehostility to LGBT people contributes to the environment which jeopardisesand excludes LGBT youth in the first place. It concludes with a list ofdetailed recommendations addressed to governments.

The report is available at


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Donald E. Wildmon [American Family Association]
Founder and Chairman>

Ford ups gay support with more cash donations

Just announced by Human Rights Campaign, Ford Motor Company donates $25,000to aid group in its fight to defeat a Federal Marriage Amendment.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest homosexual activistorganization, is acclaiming Ford Motor Company as its top-tier sponsor of anupcoming October 6 "Gala Dinner" in Washington, DC.

HRC uses event sponsorships to fund their agenda, and is largely recognizedas the frontline political lobbying group for homosexual marriage inAmerica.

In addition, the Seattle, Washington branch of HRC announced a separate$5,000 sponsorship donation from Ford Motor Company.

Here's a partial list of Ford's 2007 track record in support ofhomosexuality:


Italy asks Britain not to deport Iranian lesbian

John Hooper in Rome Guardian Unlimited Friday August 24, 2007,,2155893,00.html

The British government was today under mounting pressure from Italy not to expel an Iranian lesbian who, campaigners say, faces death by stoning if forced to return to her own country.

The case of Pegah Emambakhsh, 40, has become front-page news in Italy while going almost unreported in Britain. Today, a leading member of the rightwing pposition, led by Silvio Berlusconi, joined a government minister in proposing Ms Emambakhsh should be given asylum in Italy if Britain insisted that she had to leave.

Article continues
She was due to be put on a flight to Tehran on August 16. But her removal was delayed to allow for further representations.

Italian lesbian, gay and civil rights groups have called for a sit-in outside the British embassy in Rome on Monday. Tonight, campaigners are due to hold a meeting with the British ambassador, Edward Chaplin.


Police take lead in Pride parade

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2007/08/25 14:11:40 GMT

More than 130 police officers and staff from forces around the country havetaken part in the parade at Manchester's Gay Pride festival.

A police band made up of officers from Greater Manchester, Cheshire andMerseyside led the procession.

Thousands of people are expected to attend the annual Lesbian, Gay, Bisexualand Transgender (LGBT) festival over the August Bank Holiday.

A police spokesman said it was a "privilege to be leading this weekend".

'Diverse cities'

PC Darren Haslam, chairman of Greater Manchester Police's (GMP) Lesbian andGay Staff Affiliation, said: "It's a clear demonstration of the commitmentof GMP and forces across the country to lesbian, gay, bisexual andtrans-sexual communities.

"We want to show that we are both representative and supportive of all thecommunities we serve.

"This is the largest ever police presence in a gay Pride parade and I amdelighted that it is happening in Manchester, one of the world's mostwelcoming and diverse cities."


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The New York Times

August 25, 2007
Ex-Klansman Is Sentenced to Life for Killings in 1964

JACKSON, Miss., Aug. 24 - Calling the crime "unspeakable because onlymonsters could inflict this," a federal judge on Friday sentenced a formermember of the Ku Klux Klan to three life terms in prison for his role in the1964 kidnapping and murder of two black teenagers in Mississippi.

The case was one of several that focused a spotlight on white supremacistviolence during the civil rights era.

The victims, Henry H. Dee and Charles E. Moore, both 19, were hitchhiking inMeadville, Miss., when a group of Klansmen, including James Seale, pickedthem up and took them to a wooded area, where they were beaten and theirweighted bodies thrown into the Mississippi River. Both young men drowned.

Their bodies were not recovered until later that year in a high-profilesearch for three civil rights activists whose deaths generated widespreadrevulsion against the racial violence in Mississippi.


The Washington Post

The Quarterback Who Won't Come Clean
By Colbert I. King
Saturday, August 25, 2007; A15

Until Michael Vick and three other men were charged last month with runninga dogfighting operation, the Atlanta Falcons quarterback was, to me, justanother physically gifted, highly paid athlete in the National FootballLeague who, through his behavior on and off the field, was helping to ruinthe game.

Some of Vick's supporters may have thought it was funny when he gave thefinger last year to Atlanta fans who were booing his performance. The NFLdidn't think it was funny; neither did I. His out-of-court settlement withthe young woman who accused him of knowingly giving her genital herpesdidn't amuse me either.

But not being a Falcons fan, I don't have to watch him play.

Besides, there are plenty of Washington pro football players going out oftheir way to bring low comedy to the sport with their asinine showboating onthe field. They are enough to keep my mind off Michael Vick.

Dogfighting, however, is another matter. "Depraved" is the right word forit. Dogfighting is not, as some animal rights folks have declared, the sameas eating bacon.


The Washington Post

Sunday, August 26, 2007; B03

Gen. Pervez Musharraf may sense that his days as president of Pakistan couldbe numbered. So he has been talking to his former archrival, Benazir Bhutto,about a possible power-sharing arrangement. Bhutto, who was twice primeminister of Pakistan and is currently leader of the popular opposition partyPPP, is on the verge of deciding whether to strike a deal with Musharraf orjoin the opposition against him. She sat down with Newsweek-WashingtonPost's Lally Weymouth in New York last week to talk about her options.Excerpts:

Q. Some say that if you make a deal with President Musharraf to return topower, it will diminish your popularity.

A. Many in my party have been urging me to distance myself from GeneralMusharraf. They say his popularity ratings are down. But I am trying toconvince them that the international community and the armed forces haveconfidence in Musharraf, and therefore we need to work out a solution [withhim]. Our goal is to strengthen the forces of moderation and that's whywe've been involved in this negotiation with General Musharraf.

Now we are at a critical point where I am being tugged in two directions --between those in the party who believe in dialogue and those who think thattime is running out and that we can't spend more time [talking] unless thereare upfront confidence-building measures.

What have you asked President Musharraf to do?

We want a balance of power, reforms for a fair election, lifting of the banon a twice-elected prime minister [running for a third term], as well asimmunity for all holders of public office prior to 1999 or 2000.


The Washington Post

A Crisis of Conscience Over Refugees in Israel
Decision to Refuse Sudanese Asylum-Seekers Raises Difficult Questions ofNational Identity

By Ellen Knickmeyer
Washington Post Foreign Service
Saturday, August 25, 2007; Page A10

CAIRO, Aug. 24 -- Israel's decision to close its doors to asylum-seekersfrom Darfur and all other non-Jewish refugees has Israelis and Jews aroundthe world struggling with their distinct identities of Israel: a Jewishstate with a Jewish people, or a state born from the Holocaust with adetermination to challenge future genocides and succor their victims.

Israeli refugee groups said this week that they would challenge in courtIsrael's new policy of blocking Africans who enter the country from Egypt.International and Israeli rights groups maintain that returning the would-berefugees without assessing their claims for asylum violates internationalaccords, including the 1951 U.N. Refugee Convention, as well as Israeli lawand government commitments.


The Washington Post

30 Immigrants On Bikes Deliver A Labor Revolt
N.Y. Workers Gain Allies in Protest of Wages, Conditions
By Anthony Faiola
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, August 25, 2007; A01

NEW YORK -- The deliverymen of Saigon Grill labored for years at the bottomof Manhattan's food chain. Biking swiftly down the avenues in biting coldand searing heat, they schlepped up high-rises and walk-ups with bags ofsteaming noodles and shrimp fried rice.

Then they surprised their bosses -- and others in this seen-it-all town --by serving up something unexpected: a revolt.

The 30 men -- all immigrants, including undocumented workers frustrated withthe poor conditions and low wages that are often a fact of life in America'sunderground economy -- banded together in an effort to unionize. Theydemanded an end to what they say were salaries less than half the minimumwage, and to penalties that included $20 fines for late deliveries and $50for shutting the restaurant's glass doors with a bang.


The Washington Post

Judge Won't Block Noriega Extradition
France Seeks Panama's Ex-Dictator After His Release From U.S. Prison
By Curt Anderson
Associated Press
Saturday, August 25, 2007; Page A02

MIAMI, Aug. 24 -- A judge refused Friday to block the extradition of formerPanamanian dictator Manuel Noriega to France, where he is accused oflaundering millions of dollars in drug proceeds through French banks.

Senior U.S. District Judge William Hoeveler rejected arguments by Noriega'slawyers that his status as a U.S. prisoner of war negated the French requestunder the Geneva Conventions and required his return home to Panama.


Link to Bill Maher video - " What I Did on My Summer Vacation"


Forwarded from MoveOn.Org

"My station was intimidated by the administration and its foot soldiers atFOX News."

That is CNN's Christiane Amanpour explaining why the major televisionnetworks failed to properly scrutinize the Bush administration's claimsbefore the Iraq war.1 Instead, they joined FOX in broadcasting the Bushadministration's pro-war talking points without a response.

This week, a YouTube video from film director Robert Greenwald reveals howFOX is at it again-this time, beating the war drums against Iran. FOX usesthe same images and Bush talking points now as they did in 2003.

Can you watch the new YouTube video? Then, sign our open letter to major TVnews outlets asking them not to follow FOX down the road to war with Iran?

To watch the video and sign the letter, click here:

After thousands of Americans sign the open letter, it will be sent directlyto the TV news directors with a request for a response.


Bad news for Vick

The NFL indefinitely suspended Michael Vick without pay Friday just hoursafter he acknowledged in court papers that he did bankroll gambling ondogfighting and helped kill some dogs not worthy of the pit. Vick, however,insisted he placed no bets of his own nor took any winnings.

In disciplining Vick, commissioner Roger Goodell said Vick's admittedconduct was ''not only illegal but also cruel and reprehensible.'' Goodelltold Vick that regardless of whether he had personally placed bets, ''youractions in funding the betting and your association with illegal gamblingboth violate the terms of your NFL player contract and expose you tocorrupting influences in derogation of one of the most fundamentalresponsibilities of an NFL player.''

Goodell freed the Falcons to ''assert any claims or remedies'' to recover$22 million of Vick's signing bonus from the 10-year $130-million contracthe signed in 2004. The commissioner didn't speak to Vick but based hisdecision on the court filings. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said Goodell maymeet with Vick in the future but that hasn't been determined.

''You have engaged in conduct detrimental to the welfare of the NFL and haveviolated the league's personal conduct policy,'' Goodell told Vick in aletter.

Earlier Friday, a ''summary of facts'' signed by Vick was filed along withhis written plea agreement on a federal dogfighting conspiracy charge. Hewill appear Monday before U.S. district judge Henry E. Hudson to formallyplead guilty and then await sentencing at a later date. The court documentsand a statement by Vick's legal team seek to portray him as less involved inthe dogfighting ring than three codefendants who previously pleaded guiltyand agreed to testify against the Atlanta Falcons quarterback.


Romney proposes health care overhaul

The nation's health care system should be overhauled through plans tailoredto individual states, not through a federal government takeover, Republicanpresidential candidate Mitt Romney said Friday.

As Massachusetts governor he signed a law aimed at helping people who lackedhealth insurance. He is trying to take an issue popular among Democrats andput a conservative spin on it.

''A one-size-fits-all national health care system is bound to fail. Itignores the sharp difference between states and it relies on Washingtonbureaucracy to manage,'' Romney said. ''I don't want the people who ran theKatrina cleanup to manage our health care system.''

The government's role is to facilitate changes, not mandate them, Romneysaid during a speech before the Florida Medical Association.

Health insurance costs can be reduced by deregulating the insurance market,capping malpractice damages, and making sure everyone is insured, Romneysaid.


Clinton vows to boost U.S. health care

Hillary Rodham Clinton promised Thursday that as president she would improvehealth care quality by raising standards for providers, educating patients,and requiring insurers to reward innovation.

While rivals Barack Obama and John Edwards have proposed detailed healthcare overhaul plans, Clinton is taking an incremental approach. She startedwith a speech in June on reducing costs, followed by Thursday's address onquality, and will outline her plan for universal health care coverage nextmonth.

''My order here is deliberate,'' said Clinton, a New York senator. ''Inorder to forge a consensus on universal health care, we need to assurepeople that they will get the quality they expect at a cost they canafford.''

''Too often and in too many places, our health care system hurts us insteadof helps us,'' Clinton said at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. ''Ithurts doctors, who aren't rewarded for providing the best care and are oftenpunished for it financially. It hurts nurses who are asked to work longerhours, caring for more patients with fewer resources. And it hurts patients,who are forced to make complicated medical decisions without basicinformation about their conditions and options.''

To improve quality, Clinton said she would promote physician certificationprograms that help doctors keep up with the latest advancements, increasingMedicare reimbursements for doctors who participate in them. Nursing carewould get a boost in the form of $300 million to expand enrollment innursing schools, create mentoring programs for recent graduates, and recruitmore minorities into the profession.


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FLORIDA DIGEST August 25, 2007

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


The Washington Post

DNC May Deny Florida Slots at '08 Convention

By Michael D. Shear
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, August 25, 2007; A01

Florida lawmakers angrily assailed the Democratic National Committee and itschairman, Howard Dean, saying he is threatening to "disenfranchise" thestate's voters by considering a plan to invalidate the state's presidentialprimary.

The DNC's rules committee is to vote today whether to sanction Florida forviolating party rules by moving its primary up to Jan. 29 and violating aparty rule against holding a primary before Feb. 5. The action would denyFlorida its delegates at the party's national convention next year andprohibit Democratic presidential candidates from campaigning in the statebefore the primary.

In a conference call with reporters yesterday, Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.)said the DNC "is poised to assault the basic right of a person to vote atits meeting tomorrow." He threatened to sue the national party to preventthe sanctions from being imposed.

"I hope that cooler heads are going to prevail tomorrow," an exasperatedNelson said. "If they don't, and if the full DNC were to then take thatposition, then certainly we will have to assert what we think are importantrights."



South Florida
Naugle swamped with e-mail as gay controversy rolls on
By Brittany Wallman
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
August 25, 2007


In tiny Columbia, Ky., Mayor Jim Naugle has a small fan club. Lee and KathyKrug wrote to ask him for a "signed photograph or poster." It "would occupyan honored place in our home," they promised, "and we will tell all who askabout it (and those who don't) what you are so courageously doing."

Here on the home front, Elaine Schulze is so happy with the mayor, she hunga banner on her day care center thanking him "from the children of FortLauderdale."

As the mayor is pilloried by local officials, gay residents and activists asa "bigot" and "homophobe'' for his recent comments about gays, his e-mailfile bulges with support. From all over Fort Lauderdale, far-flung citiesacross the United States and as far as Ireland people are patting the mayoron the back, electronically.

Thousands of e-mails poured into the mayor's in-box. The South FloridaSun-Sentinel requested e-mails to and from the mayor about the latestcontroversies, and received 6,475 electronic missives to review. Many wereduplicates, and some did not pertain to the dispute. Some were to or fromother people in City Hall. But the relevant e-mails ran roughly 2-to-1 inNaugle's favor.

Publicly, his supporters seemed few. A rally for the mayor last month drewonly about 30 people, competing with the hundreds rallying against him. Someof the same cadre supported Naugle at his news conference Tuesday.

Naugle has claimed overwhelming support. "You are about to find out thatmost in Fort Lauderdale agree with me," he e-mailed a critic.

Mayor of one of the most gay-friendly cities in America, Naugle touched offa ferocious dispute in July, when the Sun-Sentinel published his commentsthat the city has a problem with gay men cruising public restrooms for sex.He was quoted as saying, "I don't use the word gay. I use the wordhomosexual. Most of them aren't gay. They're unhappy."

The e-mails poured in to the mayor.

"You should run for president! Thank you for your stand," hailed Dana Jones,a county commissioner in Cherokee County, North Carolina..

"It's time us straight people started taking our country back from thesesick people and make them either get help for their disease or go to jail,"wrote Robert Moon in Fort Worth, Texas, to the mayor.

Naugle's comments didn't start as a campaign; he was opining about aone-stall, super-toilet requested by the beach community because theoceanfront lacks public restrooms. Naugle liked the $250,000 self-cleaningrobo-toilet, in part because he said it would deter the "homosexualactivity" a traditional bathroom attracts.

"We are glad to see that there is still someone looking out for families andmorality. Some of our very good friends at Coral Ridge Towers South are gay.We like them very much. ... but the line has to be drawn," wrote Jack andSally Tully.

Gays were outraged to be associated with bathroom sex, alleging it's mostlydone by married men seeking a thrill.

Police refuted the mayor's claim, calling bathroom sex "a non-existentproblem."

Since then, Naugle changed his mind about the toilet and voted not to buyit.

But the e-mails kept coming. "We appreciate your stand and encourage you tofollow through with your convictions against evil in our city. We are trulyblessed to have you in leadership," wrote Carol Krupta of Coral RidgeMinistries. In the gay community, the mayor's words stung. Gays said they'dhelped make Fort Lauderdale's neighborhoods beautiful, and its economyrobust. The mayor's comments were meant to incite hatred, not highlight alegitimate problem, they said.

As the debate churned, Naugle voted against allowing the adults-onlyStonewall Library gay and lesbian book collection to be moved into a citybuilding. Some of the materials in the research archives include nudemagazines kept for historical reasons.

"Thank you for maintaining biblical and Christian principles for yourcountrymen worldwide -- Fort Lauderdale is not an island, and it caninfluence the world," wrote Nancy Ball Richter, a local resident, in ane-mail.

This week, the mayor turned full attention to the issue of HIV/AIDSinfection in Broward, standing with a group of religious and conservativespeakers on City Hall's steps, to urge gays to curb promiscuity. Browardconsistently ranks near the top in HIV/AIDS cases, though the numbers aredeclining.

Many gays e-mailed the mayor saying they've been in committed relationshipsfor years, and some are raising children. They didn't like the broad brushNaugle used. Gay activist Anthony Niedwiecki said he was giving a platformof hatred and demonizing good people.

"Doesn't he see the danger he's causing?" he asked this week.

Health officials said it was unfair to single out gays; the local AIDS/HIVcrisis is a black issue, a gay issue, a women's issue, and an IV drug userissue.

To many of the e-mailers, this was a battle between the Politically Correctand what Schulze termed the "Family Correct."

"Thank you for your support," the mayor wrote back to Schulze. "It is goodto hear from a happy breeder!"

The greater public latched onto the mayor, seeing him on CNN, or FOX, or inthe New York Times.

"Thank you sir for standing tall against the miscreant fringe of homosexualdeviants in your community,'' wrote John Gress, director of a conservativecoalition in Virginia.

Police kept an extra watch on the mayor's house, according to the internale-mails, especially after a Florida man, Timothy Martin, threatened his homewould be toilet-papered.

Naugle accepted support from all over, no matter the content.

"Keep up the good work," wrote one Miami resident. "If a bunch of disgustingdeviants hate you, you must be doing something right!"

The mayor gave his pat response: "Thank you for your support."

Brittany Wallman can be reached at or954-356-4541.



South Florida
Foley case still hovers over us
South Florida Sun-Sentinel Editorial Board
August 24, 2007

More of the same in Foley case

It can hardly be shocking that disgraced former congressman Mark Foley fromPalm Beach County, and the U.S. House of Representatives, won't letinvestigators examine his congressional computers. This is a smarmy casethat has been handled in an evasive, spin-controlling way right from thestart.

Foley was forced to resign last year after his Internet communications withteenage pages became public. Shortly thereafter, Foley said he was sexuallyabused as a youth by a priest, said he had an alcohol addiction, and wentfleeing into rehab. Later, a House committee report said several congressmenknew about Foley's sexually oriented e-mails, and basically looked the otherway. The same panel said nobody broke any rules except for Foley. Amazing.

And now the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, hoping to conclude itsinvestigation into Foley's activities next week, is reportedly beinghindered by Foley and Congress in attempts to see Foley's congressionalcomputers. If you are surprised, you haven't been paying attention.



Exerpts from Mayor Naugle's e-mails
August 25, 2007

What he said

Here are excerpts from some of Mayor Jim Naugle's e-mail responses to thosewho wrote him at his official e-mail:, to express supportor opposition of his views. The e-mails from July and August were releasedto the South Florida Sun-Sentinel under state public records law:

. "I am frustrated that my views are automatically labeled hate speech."

. "I am extremely comfortable with my position and enjoy the support of themajority of decent people in our city. I hope you will join me in thiseffort and reject the radical homosexual agenda."

. "I am glad you are happy, and you are right, many others are unhappy. Jim"

. "You have a good point. Some in the community, gay and straight, theirsexality (sic) is the controling (sic) center of their life. And others aregay or straight, and are concerned about the rest of the world around them.Jim."

. "I will not let political correctness hide the truth. Many responsiblehomosexuals agree with me, that Homosexual activity in public bathrooms iswrong, and that our public library should not house pornography."

. "I am concerned about the loss of tourism from those 80% that do notsupport sex in public bathrooms and feel Pornography should not be in Publiclibraries. Jim"

. "I will not leave. I will stay and fight for what is right. Perhaps youshould move. Jim"

. "I have never condemned Homosexuals. Jim"

. "Thank you for your email. Under Florida Law, one has to do somethingillegal to be recalled. Not an opinion that you don't agree with. Jim"

. "Thank you for your email. Trying to stop sexual activity in parks is notbeing homophobic in the USA. Jim"



South Florida
Newspaper took wrong side in Naugle issue
August 25, 2007

I was told that Confucius once said that when there are three sides to astory, one side loses!

In the current situation, there appears to be the "gay" side, the Naugleside, and the South Florida Sun-Sentinel side - and the Sun-Sentinel side,in my opinion, is the clear-cut loser.

Just imagine what the wisdom of the press (read "Sun-Sentinel") could havebeen if you had taken the simple position that "gays" should not engage insex in public restrooms, and "gays" should use condoms.

Warren Gillis
Coral Springs



South Florida
Public toilet issue a sad end to Naugle's political career
August 25, 2007

I know I'm running a risk of people questioning my sanity when I say thatI'm actually starting to feel sorry for Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle,but I am. When Jim was elected way back in the 1980s, he was known as amaverick and a rebel, but his fight was for better neighborhoods andchanging the status quo. Now, nearing the end of his political career (wecan only hope), he has become a marginal character, a buffoon, an affiliateof the wacko fringe.

It all started with the Robo-Toilet. While trying to make a case forspending what would turn into $500,000 for a single seater toilet, Jimargued that there needed to be a private single toilet at the beach so twogays could not fit in it and have sex. Jim called it a crisis.

What he didn't count on was that a reporter would track down his claims thatthis had become a serious problem in our community, and report that itwasn't. As a matter of fact, the police, after an exhaustive search, couldonly come up with eight cases since 2005. Instead of drawing attention toserious problems, the mayor has now had multiple press conferences to talkabout toilet sex. How sad!

I would hope that Jim might wake up tomorrow, find truth, and schedule areal press conference, with a real apology. He could retire in another yearand maybe keep some modicum of respect, at least by some of those that havenot been paying close attention. But having known him as I have all theseyears, I won't be holding my breath.

Tim Smith
Fort Lauderdale


The Miami Herald

Posted on Sat, Aug. 25, 2007
Soaring home prices challenge S. Florida employers

Recruiting workers and keeping them has become increasingly challenging forSouth Florida employers, as home prices have soared out of reach even formany two-income households.

So employers are getting increasingly creative -- throwing in bonuses,allowing flexible schedules and, in the case of the University of Miami,even kicking in up to 50 percent of a home's purchase price.

The numbers tell the now-familiar story of how we feel priced out:

Income gains have not kept up with soaring home costs. In fact, the rise inincome per person here between 2000 and 2006 -- 28 percent to an estimated$39,900, says the University of Florida's Institute for EconomicCompetitiveness -- has been all but gobbled up by the rise in property taxesand insurance alone.

The property tax on a median-priced home in unincorporated Miami-Dade roseto $8,011 last year from $3,114 in 2000 and hit $7,988 in unincorporatedsouth Broward, up from $3,505 in 2000. Homeowners insurance has skyrocketedsimilarly.

That's if you can afford to buy a home in the first place. Between 2000 and
2006, the median home price rose 172 percent to $375,800 in Miami-Dade andby 148 percent to $367,800 in Broward, says the Florida Association ofRealtors. (The median is the point at which half the homes sold are aboveand half below.)



SATURDAY August,25 2007

Hey Guys!

The M group on Saturday is different than the UNCUT reality Groups onThursdays.

M Group is a 3 hours Focus group about Prevention and Relationships.

HIV infection, safer sex and sexual encounter negotiations are discussed ina laid back, safe and comfortable environment.

It's a different approach with three hours full of laughs and fun.

Refreshments will be provided and a $20 gift certificate for those whoattend.

Don't' miss this opportunity to M Power your self about this issue and atthe same time meet new people and possibly make good friends.

Email us back or give us a call!

See You There!!!


Reminder: Get Your Awards Banquet Tickets Now!
The Dolphin Democrats

Twenty Fifth Anniversary Awards Banquet

Honorary Chair
Broward County Commissioner Ken Keechl

Honorary Co-Chairs
Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Congressman Ron Klein

Saturday, October 6th, 2007
Pier Sixty Six Resort / Hyatt Regency
17th Street Causeway
Fort Lauderdale, FL

Silent Auction / Black Tie Optional / Free Valet Parking / Cocktails
6-7:30pm / Dinner 7:30pm

This is the Dolphin Democrats major fundraiser of the year and will providesupport for our 2008 get out the vote center and voter outreach.

You may purchase tickets online and invite others online at:


Palm Beach Post

Shackling of juveniles in court criticized
Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Saturday, August 25, 2007

Having struck out in state courts, Palm Beach County Public Defender CareyHaughwout is asking a federal judge to stop county judges from shacklingchildren summoned to juvenile court.

Calling the roughly three-year-old practice cruel and unusual punishment,Haughwout this week filed a lawsuit in West Palm Beach, asking U.S. DistrictJudge Donald Middlebrooks to declare as unconstitutional the county court'sblanket policy of restraining all juveniles with leg irons and handcuffsthat are chained to their waists.

If the county had a policy of shackling only Hispanics, Jews orAfrican-Americans, the policy would clearly not pass constitutional muster,she wrote in the 63-page lawsuit. Therefore, she said, such a draconianrestraint used only for children, surely violates juveniles' constitutionalrights.

She is asking Middlebrooks to force county juvenile judges to adopt a systemnow used in Miami-Dade County. Before shackles are used, judges firstdetermine that a juvenile is violent or a flight risk.


Palm Beach Post

Florida high court may take up children's rights to sue
Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Saturday, August 25, 2007

STUART - The question of whether Florida parents can sign away theirchildren's rights to sue sports, amusement and water parks may soon becomean issue for the Florida Supreme Court, state lawmakers or both.

In the meantime, a recent appellate court ruling in the death of a14-year-old boy at an Okeechobee ATV park has left both parents and parkowners confused.


Meet Bill Clinton in Miami Beach by Supporting Hillary Clinton for

Dear Friends,

You are all invited to a once in a lifetime opportunity to meet and hear President Bill Clinton speak in Miami Beach! President Clinton will be speaking in support of his wife Hillary and her race for the White House. I can not stress how important it is to get involved in the 08' Presidential election because whomever wins will literally shape America's future possibly for the next 8 years and I personally believe that Hillary Clinton is just the woman to do it! Please come out and listen to the issues she feels are crucial in changing the direction of America: Universal Health Care, Preserving the Dream of Home Ownership, Ending the War in Iraq, Energy Independence and Global Warming, etc.

I look forward to seeing you all on

Thursday, September 6, 2007
6:30 - 8:30 PM
Miami Beach Convention Center
1901 Convention Center Dr.
Miami Beach, FL

If you wish to purchase tickets online just use the following link: .

****Please don't forget to pick my name: "Laurie Watkins" from the referred by drop-down list while completing your purchase.******

Laurie A. Watkins


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Friday, August 24, 2007

GLBT DIGEST August 24, 2007

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


Clubland: Fun blooms at Rosie's Bar & Grill in Wilton Manors
By Heather C. McCalla
August 24, 2007

Celebrating its first birthday, Rosie's Bar & Grill is pulling out all thestops with a circus.

Well, not exactly, but the big tent is going up in celebration of the WiltonManors bar's four-day anniversary party Labor Day weekend. Featuring severalthemes Friday through Monday, including Movie Martini Madness and a DragFashion Show, the dramatics will be in full effect.

Since its transformation from Hamburger Mary's, subtle improvements (soundsystem and plasma TVs) were added, but the same casual decor and fun spiritremain. From hosting an Oscars party to Monday night drag queen shows to thesimple lure of cold beer specials on hot Sunday afternoons, it's rarely aslow night (or day) at Rosie's.

Living directly behind the bar, Shane Gunderson, of Wilton Manors, walks toRosie's every Sunday, often for lunch and sometimes just for thefive-for-$10 Michelob Ultra and the five-for-$6 Miller Lite bucket deals.Grabbing a frosty bottle from a sweating bucket, Gunderson quietly stands atthe inside bar and takes in the bustling scene with his boyfriend.

"I like that it's always high energy here. The wait staff is campy, even theshirts are campy," Gunderson says, pointing to a passing server whose shirtreads, "I'm a server, not a shrink."


The New York Times

August 24, 2007
Ugandan Government Accused Of "State Homophobia"
Filed at 7:11 a.m. ET

NAIROBI (Reuters) - An international human rights group has accusedPresident Yoweri Museveni's government of promoting "state homophobia" inUganda and urged the repeal of a colonial-era law against sodomy.

Human Rights Watch's attack added to a fierce social debate in the eastAfrican nation, where gays and lesbians have been increasingly vocal indemanding rights while Christian groups have taken to the streets todenounce them.

Homosexuality is proscribed in many African countries, with gays andlesbians often living secret lives to avoid prejudice.

New York-based HRW sent a letter to Museveni calling for legislative reformand an end to his "long record of harassing" lesbian, gay, bisexual andtrans-gender people.


The Washington Post

No More Pedophile Tourists
By Michael Gerson
Friday, August 24, 2007; A15

One sexual predator, when interviewed by the FBI, described his experiencewith foreign child prostitutes this way: "It's like being a star. They wantto try my food. They want to see what clothes I wear. They want to watch mytelevision." Such "stars" are the global consumers of innocence, exercisinga particularly brutal form of power over the poorest, most vulnerablechildren on Earth.

About 25 percent of sex tourists targeting children are from the UnitedStates, traveling to Latin America, Asia and Africa in search of abominationon the modified American plan.

Another predator told the FBI that he shouldn't be prosecuted because thegirls he used were professionals. In his case, they ranged from 13 to 15years old. Other transactions involve boys younger than 10. These"professionals" are often recruited by kidnapping or deception. With two orthree "customers" a night, they suffer lasting physical damage and becomeparticularly susceptible to venereal disease. They often end their lives associal outcasts, addicted to drugs and alcohol.

The language of commerce -- "professionals" serving "customers" -- ismisapplied to violent child abuse.


Forwarded by David Bockoff,0,4801727.story?coll=la-news-comment-editorials

Los Angeles Times
The Gospel and hate crimes
By Geoffrey R. Stone
August 23 2007

On May 3, the House voted to pass the Local Law Enforcement Hate CrimesPrevention Act of 2007. The Senate will take up a companion bill, known asthe Matthew Shepard Act, when it returns from its summer recess. If enacted,this law would authorize the Justice Department, in certain narrowly definedcircumstances, to criminally prosecute an individual who "willfully" causesbodily injury to another person or "through the use of fire, a firearm or anexplosive . . . attempts to cause bodily injury" to another person becauseof that person's race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexualorientation, gender identity or disability.

A coalition of conservative African American pastors has aggressivelylobbied against this legislation on the premise that it would make itunlawful for them to preach that homosexuality is a sin. Bishop Harry R.Jackson Jr., pastor of the Hope Christian Church in College Park, Md., forexample, has asserted that the act would "keep the church from preaching theGospel."

This objection to the legislation is fanciful. To begin with, there is nodoubt of the act's constitutionality. In 1993, the Supreme Court unanimouslyupheld a virtually identical state law in Wisconsin vs. Mitchell. The courtmade clear that "a physical assault is not by any stretch of the imaginationexpressive conduct protected by the 1st Amendment." Moreover, the courtemphasized that the government has a perfectly legitimate interest inpunishing "bias-motivated crimes" because such crimes are especially likelyto inflict emotional harm on their victims, incite community unrest andprovoke retaliatory violence.



Anything But Straight
Putting Lies To The Test
by Wayne Besen

Last week, I wrote about Warren "Dr. Blog" Throckmorton an unlicensedpsychologist from a small Christian school in Pennsylvania. He has writtenno books, produced no noteworthy studies and his main claim to fame is hisonline diary, where he kvetches about real researchers who have actuallystepped foot in the lab.

On August 17, at the American Psychological Association's annual meeting inSan Francisco, Dr. Blog unveiled his new creation, "Sexual IdentityTherapy." In this bizarre paradigm, sexual attractions no longer matter.According to SIT, a man could lust after shirtless dudes in hot pants andhave no attraction to women, but could still identify as "straight." We usedto call this denial, but a few acquisitive quacks have figured out there ismoney to be made off conflicted clients by reassuring them that denial ishealthy, if it keeps them holy.

The theory behind SIT is that sexuality is a "construct" that can be alteredand aligned with religious beliefs. Of course, there is no evidence tosupport this view, while there are countless examples that such repressioncan be harmful. In Throckmorton's presentation he called this surrealprocess "synthesized sexual identity." Yeah, this sounds about as natural asplastic or polyester, doesn't it?

As irrational and incoherent as Throckmorton's theories are, he has joined acoalition of right wing activist organizations to try to force the APA intoendorsing such quackery. It is doubtful that they will get their way, butthe real goal is to bash the APA, hoping to diminish the group's authority.



Forwarded from Joe VanEron
Gay Dania Beach,0,2670032.story?coll=sofla_tab01_layout

South Florida
Broward tourism promoters tell Mayor Naugle to stop criticizing gays
By Scott Wyman and Tom Stieghorst
August 24, 2007

The leadership of Broward County's multibillion-dollar tourism industrydemanded Thursday that Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle stop his attacks onhomosexuality even as he pressed them to change a marketing campaign meantto attract gay tourists.

They said Naugle's comments over the past two months have damaged thereputation they carefully created in the two decades since the area's roleas college Spring Break capital ended. They not only cited internationalnews coverage and the deluge of calls and e-mails from concerned tourists,but said one gay-oriented convention has been put on hold.

"The rhetoric needs to stop," Nicki Grossman, president of the Greater FortLauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau, told Naugle at Thursday's meetingof the Tourism Development Council. "The anger and the mischaracterizationand the hurtful, mean-spirited and wrong-hearted rhetoric has to stop."

Although Naugle vowed not to back down, the controversy could cost him hisseat on the tourism board. County commissioners are drafting legislation tooust him.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Science Daily

Are Homosexual Civil Unions A 600-year-old Tradition?

Science Daily - A compelling new study from the September issue of theJournal of Modern History reviews historical evidence, including documentsand gravesites, suggesting that homosexual civil unions may have existed sixcenturies ago in France. The article is the latest from the ongoing"Contemporary Issues in Historical Perspective" series, which explores theintersection between historical knowledge and current affairs.

Commonly used rationales in support of gay marriage and gay civil unionsavoid historical arguments. However, as Allan A. Tulchin (ShippensburgUniversity) reveals in his forthcoming article, a strong historicalprecedent exists for homosexual civil unions.

Opponents of gay marriage in the United States today have tended to assumethat nuclear families have always been the standard household form. However,as Tulchin writes, "Western family structures have been much more variedthan many people today seem to realize, and Western legal systems have inthe past made provisions for a variety of household structures."


"Murder Music" Reggae Demo's Aims Broaden (GCN)

by Paul Schindler

Gay City News (New York City), August 23, 2006 As a coalition of LGBTactivists plan for an August 25 demonstration protesting the appearance oftwo Jamaican dancehall artists whose songs preach the murder of gay men,leaders of the group have arrived at two critical decisions - they are notasking the city to intervene in the reggae event being held on ParksDepartment property and they intend to broaden their message to take aim atviolent homophobic and misogynistic messages across the music industry.

"We will do a protest, one about all anti-gay violence, worldwide, and aboutall areas of music, not focused solely on these artists or on reggae music,"said Mark Milano, an activist affiliated with the Queer Justice League.Milano was the first activist to focus attention on Saturday's ReggaeCariFest planned for Randall's Island after he came across a subway flyerindicating the artist line-up includes Buju Banton and Bounty Killa.



[euro-queer] Uganda: State Homophobia Threatens Health and Human Rights

Government Persecution Contributing to HIV Pandemic

(New York, August 23, 2007) - In a country where homosexual conduct can bepunished with life imprisonment, the Ugandan government's latest call forarrests based on sexual orientation is a grave threat to basic freedoms,Human Rights Watch said today in a letter to President Yoweri Museveni. Theletter urged the government to repeal its colonial-era sodomy law and end along record of harassing lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT)people.

On August 21, Uganda's Radio One announced that Deputy Attorney General FredRuhindi had called for the criminal law to be used against lesbians and gaysin Uganda. "I call upon the relevant agencies to take appropriate actionbecause homosexuality is an offense under the laws of Uganda," he reportedlysaid. "The penal code in no uncertain terms punishes homosexuality and otherunnatural offenses."

Homosexual acts are criminalized in Uganda under a sodomy law inherited fromBritish colonial times, although punishments were substantially strengthenedin 1990. Section 140 of the criminal code punishes "carnal knowledge againstthe order of nature" -interpreted to include consensual same sexrelationships - with a maximum of life imprisonment.



Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

GLAAD Calls on Clear Channel to Withdraw Support of Reggae Carifest;Media to Scrutinize Appearance of Bounty Killer and Buju Banton

August 22, 2007 - The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD)today urged Clear Channel to withdraw the sponsorship of its Power 105.1station from the upcoming Reggae Carifest, featuring anti-gay performersBuju Banton and Bounty Killer. The event is slated for August 25 atRandall¹s Island in New York.

GLAAD is also encouraging the media to spotlight these performers' violent,disturbing lyrics and to question Clear Channel's support of messages thatpromote violence against the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendercommunity.

"Buju Banton and Bounty Killer continue to perform songs with virulentlyhomophobic lyrics that in some cases support the murder of gay people," saidGLAAD Senior Director of Media Programs Rashad Robinson. "It is unacceptablefor Clear Channel, the concert promoters, and the other sponsors to providethese performers with a platform to promote messages that put lesbian, gay,bisexual, and transgender people in harm's way."

Both Buju Banton and Bounty Killer notoriously celebrate brutal acts ofanti-gay violence in their music. For example, lyrics from Buju Banton'ssong "Boom Bye Bye" refer to a gay person as a "batty-boy," which is a slangterm equivalent to the f-word.

Contact Ray's List for full article


Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List

Lack Of Sex Education In U.S. Increases Vulnerability To Sexual Assault,STIs, Former Surgeon General Elders Says
21 Aug 2007

Former U.S. Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders on Wednesday at a CommunityHealth Centers of Arkansas summit on health care said the lack of sexeducation in the nation is "deafening" and makes children vulnerable tosexual assault and sexually transmitted infections, AP/KUAR reports. Sheadded that the nation is "paying a very heavy price for not educating ouryoung people."

Elders said to more than 200 people at the summit in Little Rock, Ark., thatabstinence-only sex education programs are unrealistic (AP/KUAR, 8/16). "Thereason" for high HIV and STI rates in "Southern states is because [Southernstates] are less likely to have sex education and talk about it as part ofour schools and a part of our system," Elders said, adding thatabstinence-only programs that do not teach contraception will not solve theissue (Wiest, Arkansas News Bureau, 8/16).

In addition, Elders questioned criticism of Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.), who isrunning for the Democratic presidential nomination, for supporting programsteaching age-appropriate sex education to students beginning inkindergarten.


Chicago Free Press

Malaysian gay minister takes faith back to his country
Wed, 08/22/2007 - 17:00 - Admin
By Sean Yoong
A.P. writer

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia-Malaysia's first openly gay Christian pastor, who hasworked at a New York church, conducted a controversial worship service Aug.12, calling on mainstream churches not to discriminate against gays.

The Rev. Ouyang Wen Feng, an ethnic Chinese Malaysian who was ordained aminister in the United States in May, told a congregation of nearly 80people, mainly gay men and women, to "reclaim our faith and celebrate oursexuality."

"For some of us, especially our gay brothers and sisters, we haveexperienced firsthand that Christianity has been used to persecuteminorities," Ouyang said during the service in a Kuala Lumpur hotel.

Ouyang, 37, has sparked concerns among Malaysian Christian community leadersafter he recently declared that he hopes to set up a church in thispredominantly Muslim nation, which has large Christian, Buddhist and Hinduminorities.

A church that accepts gay relationships would face stiff opposition fromboth Muslim and Christian conservatives in Malaysia. Although homosexualityis not specifically a crime in this Southeast Asian country, it is coveredunder a law prohibiting sodomy, which is punishable by up to 20 years inprison and whipping.


National Gay News

Same-Sex Pension Benefits Won
Thursday, 23 August 2007 07:13
Same-Sex Pension Benefits Won

Marvin Burrows of Hayward simply wanted what he believed his latepartner of 51 years had left him, but by pursuing it, he apparently has wonnew rights for about 5,500 union members and retirees across NorthernCalifornia.

Burrows, 71, has fought for pension benefits left by his partner, BillSwenor, since Swenor's death in March 2005 at age 66. Last week,International Longshore and Warehouse Union locals 6 and 17 - based inOakland and West Sacramento, respectively - announced they had renegotiatedtheir contracts to grant pension benefits to domestic partners, and made thechange retroactive to include Burrows.



National Gay News

Why We Still Need Gay Pride
Thursday, 23 August 2007 06:56

Some years ago, the term "post-gay" was coined to describe a worldwhere Gay Pride and Gay Villages no longer matter. Well, in North America,that day is upon us. It's not just organizations like Capital Pride here inOttawa that are struggling, it's major Pride parades and Gay Villages incities like Seattle and New Orleans that are redefining themselves and whatit means to be gay in urban centres. Just look at the evidence.



Express Gay News

Transgender candidate reportedly applies for Tempe city manager jobSusan Stanton leaves Florida for Arizona
PHOENIX (AP) | Aug 23, 1:08 PM

The former city manager of Largo, Florida -- who was fired earlier this yearwhen his sex change plans were made public -- reportedly has applied for theTempe city manager's job.

Susan Stanton was known as Steve Stanton throughout her 14-year tenure asLargo's manager.

The Largo City Commission voted in February and again in March to fireStanton from the 140,000-a-year job.

Commissioners said it was Stanton's judgment and not the sex changerevelation that prompted the votes.

Tempe officials wouldn't confirm that the 48-year-old Stanton is one of 23people applying for the city manager's job because they aren't disclosingany names except the finalists.

The City Council will start choosing the finalists on Monday.


Express Gay News

Local-based nightlife, chamber anchor Miami community
Young residents lead revival of city's gay nightlife scene
Thursday, August 23, 2007

With the state of GLBT nightlife in Miami and its mainland environs, it'shard to imagine it was once the battlefield for the anti-gay AnitaBryant-led campaign.

"There are a lot of bars and clubs in Miami," said Edison Farrow,uber-promoter of GLBT nightlife events. "Although O-Zone closed, it wasn'tbecause of slow business. The land was sold. It was very busy its lastweekends."

Farrow also pointed out that Discotekka Miami, near downtown, opened five orsix months ago. And Sandals - formerly Zippers and Cupid's Cabaret - wasopen once again on 79th Street between Biscayne Boulevard and theIntracoastal.

Within blocks of Sandals, Magnum Lounge has been attracting a crowd fromMiami's Upper East-side for several years. At one of Miami's highest profileintersections, At the Boulevard re-opened as a gay club just in the past fewmonths near NE 79th Street and Biscayne Boulevard.



Gov't Witness: Transsexuality Not Medical
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 24, 2007 - 9:00 am ET

(Boston, Massachusetts) In a court case that could have far-reachingconsequences for transsexuals a government witness testified Thursday thattranssexuality has no medical basis.

Rhiannon O'Donnabhain is suing the IRS after it refused to allow her todeduct the $25,000 cost of her sex reassignment surgery. The IRS maintainsthe surgery is cosmetic and not medically necessary.

If she wins her case hundreds of transsexuals annually across the countrywould be able to use the cost of their surgery as a tax deduction.

On the witness stand Thursday, testifying for the government was forensicpsychiatrist Dr. Park Dietz.

According to Dietz to be classified as a disease all disorders, includingtranssexuality, must have "an underlying pathological process."

"There are variations in human nature, and these variations are notdiseases," Dietz said on the stand.


Gay Marriage Hearings Begin In Vermont
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 23, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(Montpelier, Vermont) A state commission examining whether Vermont shouldmake the move from civil unions to marriage held its first hearing Thursday.

The citizens commission was appointed last month by the leaders of Vermont'sHouse and Senate, headed by Democrats (story).

The commission is chaired by former state Rep. Tom Little (D). Little, whenhe was a member of the legislature was chairman of the House JudiciaryCommittee, when it passed the law legalizing civil unions in 2000.

The commission will travel throughout the state to hear deputations fromboth advocates and foes of same-sex marriage.

But how much opposition the commission will hear became questionable onThursday. A group opposed to same-sex marriage said it would boycott thehearings and called on other Vermonters to do the same.


Gay Bishop Announces Civil Union, Infuriates Church Conservatives
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: August 23, 2007 - 5:00 pm ET

(London) The only openly gay bishop in the worldwide Anglican Church hasunveiled plans for a civil union with his longtime partner, unleashing anattack by church conservatives who call it a publicity stunt.

New Hampshire's Episcopal Bishop, Gene Robinson, tells the BritishBroadcasting Corporation that he and his partner of 18 years, Mark Andrew,53, will have a civil union shortly after the state's civil union law goes
into effect next year.

"The decision to take advantage of the new law that will come into effect inNew Hampshire on January 1 is simply our taking advantage of the kinds ofrights which are now being made open to gay and lesbian people in NewHampshire," Robinson tells interviewer Michael Buerk in the program to bebroadcast August 28.

The timing would bring it just weeks before bishops from around the worldare to meet in London for their once-a-decade meeting called the LambethConference.


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