Friday, May 30, 2008

GLBT NEWS May 30, 2008

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New York Times
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-UW - Madison poised to name openly gay chancellor
The University of Wisconsin-Madison is set to become the biggest university with an openly gay leader, according to gay rights advocates who hail the appointment as a milestone for the movement. Cornell University Provost Biddy Martin was recommended Wednesday to be the next chancellor at UW-Madison, a top national research university with 40,000 students. Martin, the No. 2 official at Cornell since 2000, is a professor of women's studies and German studies and author of the 1995 book ''Femininity Played Straight:
The Significance of Being Lesbian.'' About eight to 10 openly gay people have become college presidents and chancellors but mostly at small colleges, said Candace Gingrich of the Human Rights Campaign. ''None the size of UW-Madison,'' she said in a phone interview. ''It is a big milestone, and it's part of the progress that we're seeing at the college and university levels.

-Recognition of gay marriages in NY faces battle
Religious and social conservatives vowed Thursday to fight Gov. David Paterson's directive requiring state agencies to recognize gay marriages performed legally elsewhere, saying it flouts traditional values and is a big step toward legalizing same-sex unions in New York.''The definition of marriage predates recorded history,'' said New York State Catholic Conference Executive Director Richard E. Barnes. ''No single politician or court or legislature should attempt to redefine the very building block of our society in a way that alters its entire meaning and purpose.'' Paterson issued a memo earlier this month saying that gay New Yorkers who marry where it is legal will have the right to share family health care plans, receive tax breaks by filing jointly, enjoy stronger adoption rights and inherit property. He cited a February ruling in a New York Appellate Division court in which the judges determined that there is no legal impediment in New York to the recognition of a same-sex marriage.

-How Governor Set His Stance on Gay Rights
When David A. Paterson was growing up and his parents would go out of town, he and his little brother would stay in Harlem with family friends they called Uncle Stanley and Uncle Ronald. Uncle Stanley and Uncle Ronald, he said, were a gay couple, though in the 1960s few people described them that way. They helped young David with his spelling, and read to him and played cards with him. “Apparently, my parents never thought we were in any danger,” the governor recalled on Thursday in an interview. “I was raised in a culture that understood the different ways that people conduct their lives. And I feel very proud of it.” Mr. Paterson, who two months ago was unexpectedly elevated to be governor of New York, has accepted gay men and lesbians since early in life. From his first run for office, in 1985, he reached out to gays and lesbians, and in 1994, long before gay rights groups were broadly pushing for it, he said he supported same-sex marriage.

-A Step Closer to Justice
New Yorkers should be proud of Gov. David Paterson’s efforts to assure basic civil rights for same-sex couples married outside the state. Now, the State Legislature should prove its own commitment to equality and justice by granting gay couples the right to marry in New York State. Mr. Paterson has directed state agencies to respond to a recent court ruling by reviewing more than 1,300 state policies that affect married people. He wants to ensure that New York fully recognizes all legal marriage licenses, including those granted to gay couples in places like Massachusetts, Canada, South Africa and soon, California. If that sounds like mere paper shuffling in Albany, it is not. It means that New Yorkers who marry in San Francisco or Montreal can return home knowing that their rights will be protected. That is progress, especially since many states have specifically outlawed even the recognition of same-sex marriages granted legally elsewhere. Despite the growing political outcry, Mr. Paterson is on firm legal, as well as moral, ground. For more than a century, New York has recognized marriage contracts from other states — even

-Bruno Weighs Gay Marriage Directive
As New York lawmakers pondered a new directive from Gov. David A. Paterson that state agencies begin revising their policies to honor same-sex marriages conducted outside New York, the Legislature’s top Republican said he had yet to decide whether to challenge the governor. Joseph L. Bruno, the majority leader of the State Senate, said Thursday morning that he was surprised by the governor’s order but had not yet read it. “I’m not going to second-guess it because I haven’t seen it,” Mr. Bruno said. “I don’t know
the ramifications of this.”

-Gay Marriage Opponents Consider Ways to Fight New Policy
Opponents of same-sex unions were pondering a range of legal and legislative hallenges to Gov. David A. Paterson’s new policy of having state agencies honor same-sex marriages that have been performed outside New York. Though the directive was issued by Mr. Paterson’s counsel two weeks ago and was soon made known to gay-rights advocates and some lawmakers, the decision became broadly publicized only on Wednesday evening and apparently caught almost everyone else in Albany — Republicans and Democrats alike — by surprise. At a news conference on Thursday, the Senate majority leader, Joseph L. Bruno, a Republican who is opposed to same-sex marriage, said he had received no advance word of Mr. Paterson’s proposal. Senate Republicans are not scheduled to meet as a group until next week, but Mr. Bruno said he would be consulting with lawyers to study constitutional questions raised by Mr. Paterson’s directive, suggesting that legal action was a possibility.

Express Gay News
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-LA Times Macy's ad celebrates marriage equality
The Los Angeles Times ran a Macy's ad today showing two mingling wedding rings with the following message: "First comes love. Then comes marriage.
And now it's a milestone every couple in California can celebrate." Evan Wolfson from the organization Freedom to Marry says, "That Macy's feels comfortable doing this on such a big scale says a lot. (Of course they want to sell wedding presents, but such a prominent full-page ad from a mainstream company shows just how far we've come.)"

-Phone calls for equality
John Aravosis at AMERICABlog writes that the religious right is flooding California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's office with phone calls voicing their opposition to the same-sex marriage ruling. Once you get past the busy signals, you can voice your support in a few easy steps. Please do! The office apparently has an automated system in place to count the calls. Call (916) 445-2841. If you get a ring, press 1 for English, 2 for Spanish. Then press 5 to voice your opinion on a hot-button issue. Press 1 again to choose the same-sex marriage ruling, and press 1 one last time to pledge your support for it.

-Birmingham, AL mayor rejects Gay Pride parade permit
Langford cites personal beliefs as reason to deny permit‘I don't think I'm intolerant, I just don't condone the lifestyle,’ said Mayor Larry Langford of Birmingham, Ala.

-Florida: LaFontaine wins key gay support for House Rep. seat
The Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund backs local gay activist and former Boy Scout
The Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, the nation’s largest GLBT political action ommittee, formally endorsed Mark LaFontaine for State Representative in District 92, LaFontain announce last week. LaFontaine is facing Gwyndolen Clarke-Reed and Scott Newton, mayor of Wilton Manors, for the district seat.
He gathered 694 petition signatures from throughout the distirict, almost 80 more than required to qualify for the Aug. 26 primary election. Because there is no Republican running, the seat will be determined on the primary election day, although the winner won’t begin serving until 2009. If elected, LaFontaine will be the first openly gay official elected to the Florida Legislature. He is a veteran of the US Coast Guard and spent most of his youth involved in Boy Scouts, eventually rising to the rank of Eagle Scout. He was later instrumental in opposing Boy Scout policies that discriminated against gay boy scouts or scout masters.

-Florida Man Claims Entrapment
Attorney Norm Kent threatens to bring class action suit against city
Like most gay men who are arrested for solicitation, public indecency or lewd and lascivious behavior, Fort Lauderdale resident Mike M. does not want anyone to know about his encounter with undercover police in Holiday Park last August. But unlike most of the people who are charged with misdemeanor counts of exposure of sex organs and battery (the court dropped prostitution harges), Mike refuses to quietly plead guilty. He does not want to make a plea deal with city attorneys who are prosecuting the case vigorously. He’s indignant about not paying a fine, attending a counseling program, or having this arrest mar his otherwise spotless record. He wants Broward County Judge Gary Cowart to dismiss all charges because, he alleges, the city illegally entrapped him by having an officer aggressively pursue him for sex and prostitution.

-Friend or Foe?
When Vlada von Shute, owner of Vlada Lounge in New York, decided to open a location in the Midtown Miami, she didn’t realize what a fight she’d be up against. But in the final stages of her permit approval, residents of the area complained about a gay bar moving in--and she was denied. Luckily she appealed, won her case, and her bar will be the first gay-themed establishment in the area. Gay establishments have a long history of being “urban pioneers,” gentrifying once-rundown areas, and Midtown Miami certainly used to fit that bill. Now we look forward to sipping one of her drinks!

FOE OF THE WEEK - South Beach Hip Hop Weekend
This “festival” was once the Freaknik party in Atlanta, but that city kicked hem out due to bad behavior. Now they take over the Art Deco district, for several days filled with street brawls, assaults, and general harassment.
The Palace staff had to take down all their rainbow flags, and de-gay the whole place; Dek23, on Washington Ave, literally boarded up like they were ready for a hurricane. When an Express staff member took a trip down to 12th Street beach, he was greeted with comments of “Those are faggots!” from passers-by. Then on Friday night, patrons at Twist were asked to leave through the back alley, after someone was shot up the street. This year wasn’t as violent as years past; but that’s just because the weather was rainy, and not as many people came outside. When will Miami Beach follow Atlanta’s lead, and kick the party out?

-Finding asylum in the US
LGBT people seeking protection from persecution face legal challenges
Vladmir came to the United States several years ago to escape persecution in Russia. The 23-year old male is intelligent, kind, and quite attractive--deep bluish-green eyes, dirty-blonde hair, trim frame. He is also gay, a characteristic which continues to incite violence and mistreatment in his home country. He has been beaten by military officials, dismissed by the police, and denigrated by professors, all on account of his sexual orientation. Hearing his stories made me appreciate my own country—despite all its disparities—even if just for a moment.

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-Obama Distances Himself from Another Clergyman
(Chicago)Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said Thursday that he was "deeply disappointed" by a supporter's sermon at his church that mocked Hillary Rodham Clinton.

-UW-Madison Names Its First Lesbian Chancellor
Carolyn Martin has been named the University of Wisconsin-Madison's first lesbian chancellor, Wisconsin system president Kevin Reilly announced Wednesday afternoon in a news release.

National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/
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- "Y.M.C.A." (An Oral History)
America's favorite ballpark sing-along is actually (gasp!) a disco anthem about gay sex. Or is it? On the 30th anniversary of the Village People smash, we get the full story from the folks who know best: the cowboy, the construction worker...

-SSA Ignores Florida Gay Father. His
Child Suffers Because of Anti-Gay Discrimination
Gary Day has filed suit against the Social Security Administration. Day is a isabled father, whose repeated requests for assistance for his children has been ignored for over two years. Indications in the government's responses point to anti-gay discrimination. "Asking a father to wait more than 2 years for the SSA to decide whether his children are entitled to disability insurance suggests either a failure on the part of the agency to do its job or blatant discrimination based on the fact that these children have two dads," said Beth Littrell, Staff Attorney at Lambda Legal Southern Regional Office based in Atlanta, Georgia. "Either way the SSA's actions are unfair and unacceptable."

- Senate Bill Ensures that Californians Have the Nation's Most Comprehensive Civil Rights Protections
The Assembly on Tuesday approved legislation that continues an historic multi-year effort by assembly member John Laird and Equality California to odernize California's anti-discrimination laws. The Civil Rights Act of 2008, the fifth nondiscrimination bill authored by the Santa Cruz Assemblymember, would help ensure that Californians have the most comprehensive civil rights protections in the nation. Assembly Bill 2654 passed the Assembly with a 43-21 vote. The measure will be heard next in Senate policy committees.

-Sex Adviser: The 100 Most Asked Questions About Sex Between Men
Frequently asked questions about gay sex are addressed by the nationally known columnist. "Can a condom be put on underwater?" "I'm married to a woman, but I like men. Is this wrong?" "Is penile enlargement real or a hoax?" If you can think of it, nationally known sex columnist Tony Palermo can answer it, and he does in this collection of over 100 of the most frequently asked questions about gay sex. Often humorous, always respectful, and never condescending, Sex Adviser tackles serious questions about STD prevention, troubling questions about fidelity, and technical questions about what goes where with care, thorough research, and plain common sense.
A perfect book for young men with a lot of questions or anyone with a healthy dose of curiosity, Sex Adviser is an important and valuable additionto sex education. Tony Palermo dispenses sex advice to gay men in a national monthly column.

-Lindsay Lohan's Dad Confirms Lesbian Relationship
Michael Lohan says it's obvious to anyone with "half a brain" his daughter Lindsay is in a lesbian relationship with Samantha Ronson. The Mean Girls actress was recently seen canoodling with the DJ and Michael admits the pair are enjoying a romance. He is quoted in Us Weekly magazine as saying: "The romance is evident to anyone with half a brain."

Marriage Equality News
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-Tonight on the O’Reilly factor… Bill tries to segue from a discussion about Warren Jeffs making out with 12-year-old girls to the gays getting married in California and what these things, taken together, mean for the country.
And Dennis Miller isn’t having it.
MILLER: Listen, I have to bring a big curtain down here visually between discussing, to me, a monster like Warren Jeffs and going over to talk about the issue of gay marriage. I just have to bring down a massive curtain first.
O’REILLY: No, there’s absolutely no link there.
MILLER: These couldn’t be more different to me. Now listen, I have to be very delicate here to protect people’s privacy, but I know of a young child who over the course of her life, as I’ve seen her, has been raised by homosexual parents. And as I’ve watched her blossom, I am enamored, and I can see in her face that she’s loved.

-When I left India for America, my aunts worried about who I might end up marrying. "I hope you'll marry another Bengali," an aunt told me. Over the years that relaxed to, "I hope she's a Hindu, even if she's not Bengali."
Then it became, "At least another Indian," until finally we reached, "I hope you'll get married to someone before we all die." She probably didn't mean another man.

-The state of California is ready to give up the fight against same-sex marriage.
In a brief filed with the California Supreme Court on Thursday, Attorney
General Jerry Brown’s office advises the court to ignore conservative legal groups who asked last week that the landmark May 15 ruling upholding gay and lesbian marriages be reheard or stayed until after the Nov. 4 election.
“This historic litigation is now concluded,” Sacramento-based Senior Assistant Attorney General Christopher Krueger wrote.

Pink News - UK
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-Council praised for prompt action against discriminatory Earl
An aristocrat who refused to allow a gay couple to hold their civil partnership ceremony at his castle has had his licence revoked by Devon County Council. Russian President intervenes over Moscow Pride

-The President of Russia, Dmitriy Medvedev, has phoned the Prefecture of the Central Administrative area of Moscow and told him to authorise the gay demonstration.

-New STI campaign tells gays to get tested and get back out there
Sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust has re-launched a provocative campaign to try to increase awareness among gay men of sexually transmitted infections.

-Police worker commended for work on homophobic crime
A community liaison officer who set up a Homophobic Incident Reporting Line has been presented with a certificate of merit. Mick Cronin, who works in Kent, set the scheme up in Dover and Folkestone.

-Jewish academic attacks gay Holocaust memorial
Germany has made a mistake by dedicating a memorial to the gay men who were victims of Nazi oppression, a leading Holocaust scholar has claimed.

-Egypt accused of "indifference to justice and public health" as HIV convictions upheld
A Cairo appeals court has upheld the sentences handed down to five men jailed as part of a 'crackdown' on men who are HIV positive or living with AIDS.

-Pelosi says she will end Democratic race by June
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has made it clear that she will "step in" to put an end to the Presidential race if the party does not have a nominee by the end of June.

-Doctor Who, omnisexuals and penis envy
Right from its origins in 1963, the classic Doctor Who series was highly political and embodied a distinct minority sensibility.

-US Senator at centre of cruising scandal to write book
United States Senator Larry Craig, who came to international prominence over in incident in an airport bathroom which led to him being arrested for cruising, is to write a book.

-Cyndi Lauper headlines Pride in US soap first
American audiences of popular soap As The World Turns have been treated to a very sweet gay storyline of late, and producers of the show have recruited a gay icon to serenade the star-crossed homos.

-Threat of violence hangs over Riga Pride
Latvian nationalist groups have issued a chilling joint statement saying that if a Pride event goes ahead this weekend it may create violent protests.

-Gay firefighters support group wins award
The only national group campaigning for LGBT rights in the fire service has been honoured at a national awards ceremony. The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Support Group won a leadership award.

GLAAD’s "The Best & Worst of National News"
May 2008

-USA Today Highlights Couples’ Positive Reactions to California Marriage Ruling
USA Today captured the joy of the moment following the California Supreme Court marriage decision in its May 16 article, “Gay Couples 'Ecstatic' Over Ruling.” [...]

-Los Angeles Times Spotlights the Achievements of Nepal’s First Openly Gay olitician
While journalists discuss the increasing numbers of openly LGBT Americans running for office, they can sometimes overlook the fascinating stories of pioneering LGBT politicians in other countries. Refreshingly, the -Los Angeles Times recently focused its attention on the amazing strides toward equality made by LGBT people in the socially conservative, poverty-stricken nation of Nepal. [...]

-The Detroit News Shares the Inspiring Work of Openly Gay Bishop Gene Robinson
With the first openly gay Episcopal Bishop, Gene Robinson, releasing a new book about his journey coming out as a gay Christian, The Detroit News published a moving column by Deb Price about Robinson’s commitment to a more broadly inclusive Episcopal church, the world’s third largest Christian enomination. [...]
-Fox News Radio’s John Gibson Mocks MSNBC Analyst and Air America Radio Host
Rachel Maddow For Being a Lesbian Earlier in the year, Fox News Radio host John Gibson was widely condemned for using the death of Heath Ledger as an occasion to mock his passing and make tasteless anti-gay jokes about the Brokeback Mountain star. After GLAAD issued an action alert against him, Gibson apologized for his comments. However, Gibson continues to make anti-gay jokes, recently mocking MSNBC analyst and Air America Radio host Rachel Maddow.

Forwarded from Euro-Queer
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-Lambdaistanbul Court Case Decision: What’s Next?
On May 29th, 2008, the local court in Istanbul has announced its judgment for Lambdaistanbul LGBT Solidarity Association to be shut down. The legal process will go on with the Supreme Court of Appeals looking over the case file. The association is not yet closed down until there is a final decision by the Supreme Court of Appeals.

Forwarded from Gays Without Borders
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-Organizers urge authorities to provide security for the participants
On Thursday 29 May organizers of Moscow Gay Pride announced that their public event will take place on Sunday June,1 at 1 p.m. in front of Moscow City Hall at Tverskaya Str., 13. Earlier organizers applied for five marches in different locations per every day in May, but Moscow Mayor banned all the events saying that they will endanger public order and cause negative reaction of the majority of the population. On Wednesday it was announced that Administration of Russian President Dmitriy Medvedev called refecture of the Central Administrative area of Moscow to allow Gay Pride event in one of the locations in downtown Moscow. Though the organizers still have not received any proposals from Moscow authorities.

-The human rights organization Amnesty International, which adopted gay political prisoners and LGBT issues only after gay activists mobilized a global campaign forcing the group to expand its vision to include sexual minorities, today issued its 2007 annual report of human rights practices around the world. While not nearly as wide-ranging or comprehensive as the 2007 annual human rights survey from the US State Department, which contained hundreds of gay and HIV references, it is still necessary for gay advocates to applaud Amnesty for such inclusions in their yearly summaries.

Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
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New York City Comptroller William C. Thompson, Jr., on behalf of the New York City Pension Funds, vowed to resubmit the Funds' shareholder resolution calling on the company to bar discrimination based on sexual orientation. At ExxonMobil's annual meeting in Dallas, Texas yesterday the resolution received approximately 39.6 percent support, up from 37.7 percent last year.
Yesterday's vote marks the ninth time the resolution was voted upon by shareholders. "Once again, ExxonMobil has refused to be an industry leader in adopting basic protections for its employees.

Mark's List

Pictures from events:
â–º Girls in Wonderland
â–º Memorial Day Weekend Pensacola
â–º Pridefest of the Palm Beaches 2009
â–º Stonewall Street Festival 2008
â–º St Petersburg Pride 2008

Fort Report
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-Gay marriage gaining ground
California, New York and even Macy's are accepting it.
As the California Supreme Court decision outlawing this state's ban on same-sex marriage settles in, we are being treated to the unmistakable cracking sounds of long-held, icy bigotries giving way to a wellspring of justice. In New York, the governor has ordered state agencies to recognize marriages of same-sex couples performed elsewhere. In California, polls show growing acceptance of same-sex marriage, most notably among young people.
And, perhaps most telling of all, Macy's this week took out a full-page ad that solicited the business of same-sex couples planning their nuptials.
"First comes love. Then comes marriage," the ad proclaims beneath an image of two wedding rings. "And now it's a milestone every couple in California can celebrate.",0,1190133.stor


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