Monday, May 12, 2008


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-Foes of gay marriage ban organize in Fort Lauderdale
Get out. Organize. Care.
Strengthened by controversy over a proposition that could glue a gaymarriage ban into the Florida constitution, community activists put on aworkshop Sunday about the importance of getting involved.,0,5491565.story

-Raul Castro's daughter among Cuba's young leaders
President Raul Castro's daughter Mariela is quietly emerging as one of the younger voices of Cuba's new leadership. The island's premier sexologist, the 46-year-old is director of the National Center for Sex Education and has also run Cuba's Womens Federation since the death of her mother, Vilma Espin, in 2007.,0,5447856.story

-Underwater cemetery off Key Biscayne a lure for lovers of sea
About 45 feet beneath the ocean's surface lies a cemetery with gates, roads,markers and even benches.
The Neptune Memorial Reef, which opened last fall, is seen by its creatorsas a perfect final resting spot for those who loved the sea. They hope thatone day the reef will cover 16 acres and have room for 125,000 remains.,0,4847637.story

-8 years after chads and dimples, confusing ballots still stymie voters
The solution should have been a no-brainer, voting specialists say. Afterall, it was a badly designed ballot that inflamed the 2000 election meltdownand introduced the vagaries of chads to the political lexicon - pregnant,hanging and otherwise.,0,4978805.story

From Florida Red and Blue - SayNo2
Whether you're closely following the debate over Amendment 2 or not,spending two minutes reading this column from Friday's Detroit Free Press isa good idea. In fact, if you care about the issue at all, it's a must read.
Bottom line: the supporters of the "marriage protection" amendment inMichigan lied. Back in 2004, they sold their amendment to Michigan voters bysaying it wouldn't impact benefits at all. The sponsoring organization inMichigan - Citizens for the Protection of Marriage (CFPM) - was clear thatbenefits could not be altered in any way. "This has nothing to do withtaking benefits away. This is about marriage between a man and a woman,"the Director of the CFPM told USA Today on October 15, 2004. Not to beoutdone, the CFPM Communications Director told the Holland (MI) Sentinel,October 30, 2004, that, "This amendment has nothing to do with benefits...It's just a diversion from the real issue." And Gary Glenn, President ofAmerican Family Association and a strong proponent of the Michigan amendmentwas quoted in the October 24, 2004 Ann Arbor News as saying that talk thatbenefits would be affected by the ballot initiative was "a scare tactic."
And too bad for Michigan voters who believed what the Amendment sponsorssaid about their own amendment. They should have known better because,according to the Michigan Supreme Court, supporters of amendments ".oftentend to downplay the effect of such initiatives." [...] Like the Michiganamendment, the real impact of Amendment 2 will be decided in court whenjudges try to untangle what "substantial equivalent" of marriage is. Or whatconstitutes a relationship that is "treated as marriage." And just like inMichigan, we know Amendment 2 can actually take away existing rights andbenefits from our neighbors - leaving senior citizens without the ability tovisit loved ones in a hospital or denying young couples the ability to sharehealth care benefits. And just like in Michigan, the supporters of Amendment2 insist that their amendment won't do any of those things. In fact, theyuse some of the exact same language. But unlike Michigan, we now knowbetter. We've seen this story too many times already to be fooled by it.
It's happened in Michigan and Kentucky and Ohio - a "marriage protection"
amendment being sold as one thing and delivering something else. There's noexcuse for us not to end this right now. We only need 40% of the vote tokeep this bill of goods out of our Constitution and out of our courts. Wecan SayNo2 the bait and switch. We can do it.
But we can't do it without you. Please forward this email or a link to ourwebsite ( to your friends. Ask them to sign the SayNo2pledge. Check for events in your area or make a contribution to help us keepspreading the message - SayNo2. We can't let Floridians reward dishonesty.
But that's what we know will happen if we don't speak up and step up rightnow. We're counting on you!
The Florida Red and Blue/SayNo2 Team
P.S. We're only a few thousand dollars away from meeting our $100,000challenge! We can close it out today if you will help us right now. Bygiving today, your contribution will be matched - dollar for dollar -doubling your contribution up to $100,000! P.P.S. Hear Campaign ManagerDerek Newton debate the impact of the Michigan case on WMNF radio in Tampaor read the transcript of the report here.

Fort Report
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-Compromise in Florida's delegate dispute may be ahead
In a sign that the impasse over giving Florida a voice in the Democraticnomination finally may be breaking, both Democratic presidential campaignsare starting to broach compromise plans publicly.


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