Thursday, March 27, 2008

GLBT DIGEST March 27, 2008

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-South Florida gay community mourning loss of icon, Michael 'La La' BrownGay bars have been known for defining communities more often than they areaccused of defiling them. In places like South Beach or Wilton Manors, theycan be characterized as chic destinations. In growing, and more rural areas,however, gay bars often survive as modest neighborhood havens supported byfriends and visitors seeking familiar faces, comfortable spaces oropportunities to be without judgment.,0,3780802.story

Express Gay News
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-In first, black trans woman headed to Dem convention
Richmond, a Clinton delegate, would be happy with Obama as nomineeMarisa Richmond has been involved in national political conventions since1980, when she worked on Sen. Edward Kennedy's bid for president.
But this election year will likely be more memorable for Richmond, as she isset to become the first black transgender delegate to the DemocraticNational Convention.

-Dem presidential hopefuls battle for gay votes in Pa.
Chelsea Clinton set to appear at Philly gay bar
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton won the endorsement Mondayof the Liberty City Democratic Club, Philadelphia's largest gay politicalgroup.
That boosts her support among gay voters at a time when polls show her aheadof rival presidential contender Barack Obama in Pennsylvania's Democraticprimary set for April 22.

-Dean claims DNC fired gay man for poor performance
DNC chair acknowledges tension between blacks, gays over delegate selectionDemocratic National Committee Chair Howard Dean says poor job performance -not discrimination - prompted the organization to fire a gay man who is nowsuing for wrongful termination.

-Judge considers new trial for LAPD's first openly gay officer
Jury ruled for the city last year in discrimination suit
A judge is considering whether to grant a new trial to the first openly gayLos Angeles police officer.

-Both sides of Amendment 2 argument debate issue
TALLAHASSEE - The main sponsor of a constitutional ban on gay marriage saidtoday all "aberrant forms of marriage" might become legal unless Floridavoters adopt his proposal at the polls next November.

-Austrian poster competition to highlight homophobia in football
VIENNA (AFP) - With just over two months to go before the Euro 2008 footballchampionships start, a Vienna-based gay and lesbian group has launched aposter competition to draw attention to the homophobic side of the sport.;_ylt=AhF8n4B3T.TFB_gr2aKxf1YmWccF

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-Clinton Camp Blasts Pelosi Over Superdelegate Remarks
(Washington) Twenty top Democratic donors who are supporting Hillary RodhamClinton criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for saying superdelegatesshould support the presidential candidate with the most pledged delegates.

-Catholic Vote Critical For Dems In Pa.
(Scranton, Pennsylvania) Understanding Pennsylvania's rich Catholictradition and responding to it is an article of faith for Sens. HillaryRodham Clinton and Barack Obama as the April 22 primary looms in the stillunsettled and intense Democratic presidential race.

-Poll: Voters Split Over Obama Speech
(Washington) Barack Obama 's speech on race has left the public divided onwhether he has sufficiently put the issue behind him, a poll shows.

-Woman Argues Ohio Anti-Gay Amendment Bars Ex From Sharing Custody
(Columbus, Ohio) An Ohio woman says the state's ban on same-sex marriage isgrounds for barring her ex-partner from sharing custody with her son.

-Rumors Continue To Swirl Around SF Mayor Newsom
(San Francisco, California) Day by day San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom issounding more and more as though he already is running for Governor.

-Catholics Mount Protest Over Gay Diversity Course
(Vancouver, British Columbia) The Roman Catholic Church is escalating itsopposition to a British Columbia government teacher guide that encouragesdiversity in the public school system.

-Majority In Vt. Support Changing Civil Unions To Marriage
(Montpelier, Vermont) As a state commission prepares its report on whetherto amend Vermont's civil union law to allow for same-sex marriage a new pollfinds that the majority of people in the state believe gay and lesbiancouples should have the right to marry.

-Gay Marriage Supporter Gravel Drops Dems For Libertarians
(Washington) Long-shot presidential candidate Mike Gravel told supportersWednesday he is leaving the Democratic Party to join the Libertarian Party.

-Separation of Church and Pharmacy
Court upholds punishment for pharmacist who uses religion to keepprescriptions

National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/
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-Kids' Cartoon Character
Becomes Member of Gay Rights Group
COLAGE welcomes Buddy G as the organization's newest member. Theorganization is a national movement of children, youth and adults who haveone or more lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer (LGBTQ)parents.

-Atlanta Pride Takes Part in Emory's Human Rights Week
Explaining how the battle for gay and lesbian rights fits into the globalstruggle for human rights is the goal of a display and discussion that ispart of the annual Human Rights Week opening today at Emory University.

-Equality Forum 2008 - International Focus
Gays and Lesbians in the Muslim World
The international focus of Equality Forum 2008 is Gays and Lesbians in theMuslim World. Equality Forum presents the largest annual national andinternational GLBT civil rights forum. Equality Forum 2008 (April 28-May 4)in Philadelphia has 34 panels, 14 parties and 15 special events.

The Advocate
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-Philadelphia's Stonewall Chapter Endorses Clinton
Philadelphia's Liberty City Democratic Club, one of three Pennsylvaniachapters of the National Stonewall Democrats, has endorsed Hillary Clintonfor president.

Marriage Equality News
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-Opposition to this weekend's same sex commitment ceremony at Penn State washand delivered to university officials and to the man who will preside overthe ceremony itself - the mayor of State College. Pastor Gary Dull of theAltoona Baptist Church said he is against the same-sex commitment ceremonybecause it doesn't follow the values laid out in the Bible. But, StateCollege Mayor Bill Welch said the ceremony is not about the Bible, but aboutlove and commitment. Welch said, "To biblical liturgists, this commitmentceremony is probably like the Apocalypse, but to me it isn't." He said thatthe majority of the feedback he's received for agreeing to oversee thisSaturday's ceremony has been positive.

-A Chinese lesbian stands next to two banners bearing the signatures ofindividuals from across China who support same sex-marriage rights. Thebanners were displayed in Beijing last Sunday March 23 as part of a campaignby gays and lesbians in China's capital city to win same-sex marriageequality. Homosexuality was only removed from the communist government'slist of mental illnesses in 2001, since which time gays and lesbians havebecome more accepted in Chinese society. However, while homosexuality hasbecome a more acceptable topic in state-owned newspapers and magazines, asrecently as 2005, Beijing's first gay and lesbian film festival was shutdown by authorities.

-This is the response of Focus on the Family's Glenn Stanton to yesterdays'post, "An Anthropologist Critiques Focus on the Family's "Anthropological"Report on Marriage." As with Professor Chapman's post, Stanton's is too longto be adequately excerpted here. See the Box Turtle Bulletin blog for thecomplete text. Freedom to Marry's Evan Wolfson debated Glenn Stanton in2005. Also see the comments appended to today's post at Box Turtle Bulletin.

-A legislative committee charged with hearing Vermonters' views on same-sexmarriage will release its long-awaited report next month, but members aretight-lipped as to what its final contents will be.

-A state Senate committee on March 18 approved an amendment toPennsylvania's state constitution that would ban marriage between people ofthe same sex. But gay marriage is already prohibited by a 1996 law, so thisproposal was mainly an opportunity for speeches and demagoguery.

-If you happen to own shares of Wells Fargo, make sure to open the proxystatement you should have received recently, and take the time to vote yourproxy. Item 9, "Stockholder Proposal Regarding Neutral Sexual OrientationEmployment Policy" (pages 105-107) is a vicious, anti-LGBT proposal askingthe company to create an equal opportunity policy without reference to "anymatters related to sexual interests, activities, or orientation." As asupporting statement, the proposal adds "While the legal institution ofmarriage between a man and a woman should be protected, the sexualinterests, inclinations and activities of all employees should be a privatematter, not a corporate concern." There's more bile from the ultra-right,but I won't repeat it here.

Pink News - UK
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-Activist calls on people to ditch the LGBT labels
An ambitious campaign that aims to change the ways in which young peoplelabel themselves was launched last week in the form of a funky teen-orientedwebsite. The website Ditch the Label ( was 'virtually'launched last Saturday night in a co-ordinated browsing of the new site,after being advertised via its original Myspace and the founder's personalMyspace sites. The launch night attracted in excess of one millionnon-unique hits (which refers to when a person looks at different pagesthroughout the site).
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-Obama and Clinton supporters attracted by McCain
A surprising number of supporters of both Barack Obama and Hillary Clintonwould throw their votes to Republican John McCain if their candidate doesnot become the Democratic Presidential nominee, according to a new Galluppoll released yesterday. While only 19 percent of Obama supporters said theywould vote for McCain over Clinton, 28 percent of Clinton supporters wouldswitch their vote to the Republican nominee.
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-Mardi Gras clergy feel the wrath of fundamentalists
Some Sydney-based clergy who marched in this year's 30th anniversary MardiGras have had their careers threatened by those who objected to their publicparticipation and support of gay rights. Some 35 ministers marched,alongside eight people who acted as proxies on behalf of their church'sReverends, as part of a group known as 100Revs.The name refers to the 100Reverends who signed a formal apology to the LGBT community.
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-Stonewall "disappointed" over free vote on gay equality
Gay equality organisation Stonewall has criticised the Prime Minister'sdecision to give Labour MPs a free vote on provisions in the HumanFertilisation and Embryology Bill that aim to give gay and lesbian peopleequal access to NHS fertility and assisted conception services. The bill,currently before Parliament, would replace the current need for doctors toconsider the need for a father when decided whether or not to provide suchtreatments with the need for supportive parenting.
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-INTERVIEW: How the internet changed gay society
Channel 4 News technology correspondent Benjamin Cohen spoke to about what his report into how the gay dating site Gaydarchanged the lives of the gay community. The report, one of a series ofthree marking ten years since the boom for More 4 News, will bebroadcast this evening. Ownership and Control, to be broadcast tomorrowevening, compares the development of the internet to the division of landinto enclosed, private areas, controlled by the few to control the masses.
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-London's Irish LGBT community to be studied
A new project that will Irish gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans people chooseto settle in London is appealing for participants. The research study by theUniversity of Essex is being funded by an £82,000 grant from the Economicand Social Research Council. Dr Roisin Ryan-Flood of the Department ofSociology, said: "Metropolitan centres have long been associated withtolerance of sexual diversity and established queer communities."
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-New England captain has learnt from past mistakes
Rio Ferdinand's appointment as the new captain of the England football squadhas been accompanied by a pledge from the player that he has learnt frompast mistakes. The 29-year-old stirred controversy in 2006 during aninterview with Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles, in which he used the word "faggot."
In 2003 he failed to appear to give a drugs test and was suspended from cluband international games for eight months and fined £50,000.
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Forwarded from Gays Without Borders
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- London
Jamaican "murder music" hate-monger, Bounty Killer, has had two of his threeUK concerts cancelled in the last week, following a campaign by the gayhuman rights group OutRage! His concerts in Bradford and Birmingham wereaxed, losing him thousands of pounds in performance fees. In Germany, BountyKiller's performance in Essen was cancelled and other German concert datesare now in doubt. Gay human rights groups are coordinating a Europe-widecampaign to halt his "Deadly Alliance" tour of the Netherlands, France,Belgium, Italy and Switzerland.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-State Department urged to address 'shocking' violations
120 countries cited for abuse, harassment of gay citizens
A new advocacy group is calling on the U.S. State Department to address gayrights violations detailed in a recently published report.

-Taranaki: Trans women sent to male prison
A transgendered woman in New Plymouth who admitted to the aggravated robberyof a taxi driver has been charged and sentenced to three years and threemonths inside a male prison.

-'Inhumane and oppressive': the final verdict on Britain's asylum policy
The most comprehensive examination of the UK's asylum system ever conductedhas found it "marred by inhumanity" and "not yet fit for purpose".

-Catholics could join the royal succession
Gordon Brown is to consider abolishing the Act that prevents Roman Catholicsmarrying into the Royal Family or becoming king or queen, in a move thatcould lead to the disestablishment of the Church of England.

-Openly Gay and Lesbian Candidates Face Mixed Reactions in Midwest
Openly gay candidates and politicians are not unheard of in theMidwest-Wisconsin Rep. Tammy Baldwin has been widely profiled in the mediafor more than 10 years, and Ohio judge, the honorable Mary Wiseman hasgarnered media attention in the past six months. But unfortunately attackson these openly gay politicians are becoming as common as openly gaypoliticians themselves.

-Action, Not Words
It seems as if a lot of the gay community attention and energy that wouldnormally go to advancing gay equality is being siphoned off by thepresidential race, primarily by the contest between Barack Obama and HillaryClinton for the Democratic nomination.

-Former Surgeon General: Mainstream Medicine Has Endorsed Medical Marijuana
An historic document from the 12,4000-member American College of Physicianscertifies the medical value of marijuana.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-Two GLBT Democratic Delegates selected
One pledged to Clinton and one to Obama
On March 15, the Executive Committee of the Tennessee Democratic Party metin Nashville to complete selection of the state's delegation to theDemocratic National Convention in Denver. The meeting was postponed fromMarch 8, due to inclement weather in the Nashville area that day.

-Abby: Parents' prejudice leads to son's suicide
DEAR ABBY: I am struggling with the question of whether to reveal aconfidence made more than two years ago. My boyfriend at the time, "Jerry,"revealed to me that he was gay. We remained friends, but I started datingsomeone else.
Jerry never confided his secret to anyone else and, eventually feelingovercome with depression, took his own life. Jerry told me more than oncethat he knew how his parents would feel if he told them he was gay. He sawthe way they snickered when they saw a gay couple. They made it very clearto him that they didn't think it was normal. Jerry was sure, seeing the wayhis parents viewed gay people, that this was how he, too, would be viewed.
His parents are now blaming me for Jerry taking his own life. They say it was because we broke up. Would it be selfish of me to tell them the truth -that THEY are the real reason? Or should I continue to keep his secret? -
His Best Friend, Rochester, N.Y.
DEAR BEST FRIEND: You should reveal that your friend told you he was gay andwas worried about how his parents would accept it. However, when you tellthem, do not expect them to believe you. It will be far easier for them tocontinue pointing the finger at you than to accept that they had a role intheir son's suicide.

-FBI Probed Gays Over Hoax Threats Against Falwell, Claims Christian
Seemingly a propos of nothing, a Christian news service reports that 25years ago the FBI looked into reports that the GLBT community might have itin for Falwell. By the way, the Feds decided there was nothing to thoserumors.

-UNITED KINGDOM: Don't Believe Iranian Propaganda on Gays, Urges GayHumanists
Government's "no evidence" claim slammed
LONDON, March 24, 2008 - The Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association (GALHA)has demanded that the Government clarify its approach to the deportation ofgay people to Iran after a spokesman in the House of Lords claimed there wasno evidence that gays were being executed because of their sexuality.

-An open door: Gay Dominicans seek more visibility
It was a balmy Friday night late last month as hundreds of gay men, lesbiansand transgender people gathered in Parque Duarte in the heart of SantoDomingo's Colonial Zone to meet friends, drink and even cruise. A handful of"bugarrones" or male prostitutes discreetly worked the crowd, but Ariel, a25-year-old from the northern city of Santiago, described the park as ahaven of sorts for the capital's LGBT residents.

-BBC:Teachers reject 'Army propaganda'
Teachers have voted to oppose military recruitment activities in schools ifthey employ "misleading propaganda".

-Sea levels rising too fast for Thames Barrier
A fear that sea levels will rise far faster than predicted this century hasled to a revision of the plan to protect London from a devastating floodcaused by the sort of storm surge in the North Sea that resulted in theclosure of the Thames Barrier yesterday.

-Rev. Wright, Obama and me
It's time to inject a bit of sanity into the discussion of the video clipsof Barack Obama's pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright that surfaced 10 days ago.
After struggling with how to put Reverend Wright's moments of hate anddivisiveness into context, I decided that the only way to judge this man wasto put myself in his shoes. I certainly wouldn't want to be judged by themost outrageous two minutes of utterances in my career.


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