Thursday, May 29, 2008

GLBT NEWS Thursday May 29, 2008

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New York Times
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-New York to Back Same-Sex Unions From Elsewhere
ALBANY — Gov. David A. Paterson has directed all state agencies to begin to revise their policies and regulations to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions, like Massachusetts, California and Canada.
In a directive issued on May 14, the governor’s legal counsel, David Nocenti, instructed the agencies that gay couples married elsewhere “should be afforded the same recognition as any other legally performed union.” The revisions are most likely to involve as many as 1,300 statutes and regulations in New York governing everything from joint filing of income tax returns to transferring fishing licenses between spouses. In a videotaped message given to gay community leaders at a dinner on May 17, Mr. Paterson described the move as “a strong step toward marriage equality.” And people on both sides of the issue said it moved the state closer to fully legalizing same-sex unions in this state. “Very shortly, there will be hundreds and hundreds and hundreds, and probably thousands and thousands and thousands of gay people who have their marriages recognized by the state,” said Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell, a Democrat who represents the Upper West Side and has pushed for legalization of gay unions. Massachusetts and California are the only states that have legalized gay marriage, while others, including New Jersey and Vermont, allow civil unions. Forty-one states have laws limiting marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

-Gay rights advocates score wins in NY, Calif.
Gay rights advocates had reason to celebrate on both coasts Thursday, with New York set to recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere and California preparing to begin issuing marriage licenses to gay couples on June 17. Hours after California issued a directive Wednesday authorizing that date, word came that New York Gov. David Paterson instructed state agencies -- including those governing insurance and health care -- to immediately change policies and regulations to recognize gay marriages. For years, gay rights advocates have sought recognition for same-sex marriages so couples could share family health care plans, receive tax breaks by filing jointly, enjoy stronger adoption rights and inherit property. Many or all of those rights would now appear to be available to New Yorkers who legally wed same-sex partners in other states and countries, according to the memo sent earlier this month from the governor's counsel. Agencies have until June 30 to report back to the counsel on how, specifically, the directive will change existing state benefits and services for gay couples.

Express Gay News
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-Sam Champion Outed By Bravo Exec
Like CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, ABC weatherman Sam Champion has been inching out of the closet: he's basically out socially (just ask our commenters!) but remains closeted professionally. Michael Musto wrote in Out one year ago that Champion was in a "glass closet... the press still gives a free pass to people like... Champion and... Cooper, helping to keep their glass doors shut so they can lead gay social lives while carefully skirting the issue." And yet here's Andy Cohen, a senior VP at NBC's Bravo, blogging about Champion, Champion's boyfriend, and their fabulous party in the Hamptons Memorial Day weekend:

-State Supreme Court may give gays a medical victory
Justices appear to be leaning toward forbidding doctors from denying treatment based on their religious views.
SAN FRANCISCO -- Two weeks after deciding same-sex couples are entitled to marry, the California Supreme Court appeared ready Wednesday to rule that physicians have no constitutional right to refuse medical treatment to gays on grounds it would violate their religious beliefs. The justices' inclination emerged as the state high court heard arguments in a case that pits the religious freedom of physicians against the right of gays to be free from discrimination.,0,592068.story?track=

-Harvard Students Arrested At Recruiting Center
Students Protesting Military's 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Policy
SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine -- A group of openly gay Harvard University students were in South Portland, Maine, Wednesday morning hoping to enlist for military service. This despite the federal policy known as "don't ask, don't tell" that bars people who are openly gay from serving in the military. The group made its way into the recruitment station as part of its right to serve campaign.

-Exxon Shareholders Reject Gay Rights Resolution
While Rockefeller family’s attempt to get oil giant ExxonMobil to focus more on climate change got more publicity, there was another resolution that went before shareholders today as well--gay and lesbian rights.
ExxonMobil (XOM: 90.43, +0.00, +0.00%) shareholders voted down a resolution to add “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to Exxon’s non-discrimination statement on Wednesday. Approximately 40% of Exxon’s outstanding shares voted in favor of the clause, but it was not enough to send the issue to the oil company’s board of directors. The shareholder resolution has come up every year since 2000, when it got 8.2% approval among shareholders. The percentage that voted in favor of the resolution has grown every year since then.
The non-discrimination resolution got 39.6% of the vote--more support than all the Rockefeller-supported proposals.

Forwarded from Euro-Queer
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Monument to Homosexual Holocaust Victims Opens in Berlin
The controversy over the monument to homosexual Holocaust victims has dragged on for years. On Tuesday, however, it is finally being unveiled in Berlin. Still, not all disagreements have been set aside. After years of controversy, a monument to homosexual victims of the Holocaust is finally opening in Berlin. Germany's federal commissioner for culture, Bernd Neumann, is to formally open the monument Tuesday together with Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit. The monument consists of a single stele or pillar, 3.6 meters (11.8 feet) high and 1.90 meters (6.2 feet) wide, located in Berlin's central Tiergarten park opposite the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe. According to the monument's designers, the Berlin-based Norwegian-Danish artist duo Ingar Dragset and Michael Elmgreen, the new monument refers to the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, which consists of 2,711 concrete stelae, while simultaneously representing a different history of persecution. "We wanted to use the same visual language (as the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe) in order to make the connection between our monument and other victim groups," Dragset told the Berlin magazine Zitty in an interview. "It was the same suffering, the same history, but at the same time there were many differences."

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-Calif. Hears Lesbian Insemination Case
California's highest court considered Wednesday whether doctors' religious beliefs give them the right to withhold medical treatment from lesbians and gay men, a group specifically protected under state anti-discrimination laws.

-Priest in Boston Clergy Abuse Case Seeks New Trial
(Boston) A defrocked priest at the center of the clergy sex abuse crisis in the Boston Archdiocese is making a bid for a new trial by challenging his victim's repressed memories.

-Wife of Gay Gov: I Paid for Wedding
The estranged wife of New Jersey's gay former governor portrayed herself as a dutiful spouse and dedicated political ally who went so far as to pay for their $30,000 wedding and to add his political cronies to the guest list.

-Gay Mormons Tell Church: Leave Marriage Alone
A support group for gay Mormons is urging church leaders to stay on the sidelines after the California Supreme Court said same-sex marriage there is legal.

-Poll: Majority of Calif. Backs Gay Marriage
(San Francisco) More California voters now support allowing same-sex marriage than oppose it, according to a new poll released Wednesday.

The Advocate
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-Gay Father Sues SSA for Children's Benefits
A disabled gay father from Florida is suing the Social Security Administration after waiting two years to receive assistance for his children. Gary Day, represented by Lambda Legal, claims that the government's unresponsiveness points to antigay discrimination. In February 2006, Day submitted his application for Child Insurance Benefits, along with birth certificates and court documents to show that he is the legal parent of the children. The SSA acknowledged receiving the application, saying it would respond within 45 days. After not corresponding for more than a year, Lambda Legal contacted the SSA on Day's behalf. The office replied that there were unspecific "legal questions and policy issues" preventing Day’s eligibility from being determined.

National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/
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-Teen, Dad Must Pay Gay Couple $15,000
A gay married couple from Pointe Claire who say they were harassed by a homophobic teenager have been awarded $15,000 in damages by the Quebec Human Rights Tribunal. Théo Wouters and Roger Thibault had been seeking $37,000 in damages, claiming the initial apology offered by their young tormenter wasn't sincere.

-GLAAD Sponsors International Gay & Lesbian Aquatics 2008 Championships
The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) announced today its in-kind exclusive sponsorship of the International Gay and Lesbian Aquatics (IGLA) 2008 Championships, to be held June 18 - 22. In addition to assisting IGLA with its promotions and media communications, every athlete who competes in the tournament will receive a free one-year membership to GLAAD.

-Pride Colors Sail in Salem
A new type of ship will sail out of Salem harbor on Friday, June 6th, 2008.
As one of the city's first ever official Gay PRIDE celebrations, the Salem PRIDE Cruise launches Salem, MA in a new direction for its ever expanding GLBT community. The cruise is presented by Salem area residents and business owners Hugh Kerr - Owner/Operator of Witch City Rickshaw, William Walker - President of Water Transportation Alternatives (operator of the Salem Ferry, Harbor Express, and NE Aquarium Whale Watch) and Ryan Robbins – Producer, as the first in a series of summer entertainment cruises. The Salem PRIDE Cruise coincides with Boston PRIDE events which begin on the same day.

-History: Chicago's Stonewall: The Trip Raid in 1968
In the 21st century, “Stonewall” is the accepted buzzword for the beginning of the gay liberation movement in the United States. It conjures up a vision of bar-raiding Greenwich Village cops terrorized inside the Stonewall Inn by a bunch of angry queens outside, tossing rocks, bottles, a Molotov cocktail and shouts reminiscent of Network ( “I'm not going to take this anymore!” ) . But in Chicago, the events of that June day in 1969 barely made a ripple.
The riot was not immediate national news. A few local gay papers existed around the country, but there wasn't any real national gay press. When word from New York finally reached here, it was recorded in July's Mattachine Midwest Newsletter with the same emphasis as was given to the item on vigilante residents of the borough of Queens who, in a campaign against homosexuals reportedly frequenting a neighborhood park, had cut down dozens of its trees. According to the writer, William B. Kelley, “The New York Times ran at least three days of stories, one editorial and one letter on the subject. They were against cutting the trees.”

-How to . . . Be Gay at a City Law Firm
Sexuality is everywhere. It permeates all communication in all contexts.
People talking about their children, their wives, what’s going on in their social lives . . . And, in subtle ways, one is afforded respect and affirmation for those things. Not being a part of that affects you. For me it led to a pattern of deliberately undermining my own chances. Every time I was pushed towards positions of greater prominence within the firm, I either aid “no” outright, or suffered some kind of crisis of my own making, which revented me from taking up the role. As a gay person who wasn’t “out”, I suppose I didn’t want to be exposed in any way.

-Does Obama Support Gay Marriage?
Barack Obama might be the first major candidate for president to support same-sex marriage. He won’t say as much. His definition of a “new politics” is capacious enough to allow for pose and slipperiness (as long as he’s the one engaged in them). But his stance on a California supreme-court decision that ripped away any middle ground on the issue makes him operationally pro-gay marriage.

Marriage Equality News
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-In Part One of this series of columns, we considered why the California court held the name “marriage” to be part of the constitutionally-guaranteed right -- rather than focusing, as the highest courts in some other states have, upon ensuring same-sex couples access to the material benefits and obligations of marriage.
Now, in Part Two, we will examine the California court’s view about the continuing importance of marriage in society. We suggest that that the court’s majority opinion is, perhaps ironically, both conservative and progressive – conservative in the way it marshals traditional arguments about why marriage matters to individuals and to society, yet progressive in that it rejects the appeal to history and tradition as a reason that the definition of marriage must not change.

-While discussing Sen. John McCain's position on gay marriage, Wolf Blitzer said: "Because on that issue, he doesn't really disagree all that much with [Sens. Hillary] Clinton or [Barack] Obama. He opposes a constitutional amendment on the issue of marriage, is that right?" CBN's David Brody replied: "That's right." In fact, McCain supports amendments to state constitutions to ban same-sex marriage and would also support under certain circumstances an amendment to the federal Constitution banning same-sex marriage.

Pink News - UK
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-Australian diver comes out ahead of Olympics
Like many athletes around the world, Australian Matthew Mitcham fought his way to the top of his sport to qualify for the Beijing Olympic Games.

-Turkish court orders dissolution of gay rights group
A leading gay rights organisation has been ordered to dissolve itself by a court in Turkey. A department of the Istanbul Governor's claimed Lambda Istanbul violates Turkish laws on morality.

-Boys only run to raise funds for testicular cancer research
300 men have already signed up to get fit with their footballing heroes this weekend and raise money and awareness for male cancer research.

-Radio star sacked over Kennedy assissination comments
A Pittsburgh-area sports talk show host has been fired for controversial remarks he made earlier this month regarding Senator Edward Kennedy.

-Analysis: Follow the Roman Catholic handbook on influencing politics
The Roman Catholic Church has said that the defeat in Parliament of attempts to lower the time limit on abortions is not the end of the matter. They have urged their adherents to target those MPs who voted for maintaining the status quo.

-UNAIDS: HIV+ travel restrictions are not justified
A United Nations body has said that travel restrictions on people who are HIV+ are discriminatory and have no public health justification.

-Bristol to host fifth annual Bear Fiesta
Gay venues in Bristol are preparing for a three-day celebration of heft, as the Bear Fiesta descends on the city once again.

1,324 Reasons to Say “I Do” by Libby Post
Well I’m not about to break out into song with “Get Me to the Church—uh actually, Synagogue—On Time” but New York Governor David Paterson’a recent directive to state agencies to recognize same-sex marriages from other jurisdictions has gotten my toe tapping.
My partner, Lynn, and I have always said that when same-sex marriage is legal in New York State that’s when we’ll get married. Our concern has always been getting all the rights and responsibilities we’re due—like filing our state taxes jointly or having unfettered access to one another when either of us is in a hospital or another type of care facility.

Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
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-The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is questioning
the American Psychiatric Association's (APA) recent appointments of KennethZucker, Ph.D., to chair the Committee on Sexual and Gender IdentityDisorders for the revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual ofMental Disorders (DSM-V), and Ray Blanchard, Ph.D., to serve as a committeemember. These appointments are raising great concerns within the lesbian,gay, bisexual and transgender community.

-Gay or Homosexual? What's the Difference?
A column about the different ways in which heterosexual and homosexual men perceive the terms "gay" and "homosexual." Gay men consider them the same, but straight men don't, engendering much confusion in culture-wide, including the press. To be published in the June issue of The Letter, Kentucky's gay, lesbian,bisexual and transgender newspaper.
Liberal on the Sauce - Gay or Homosexual?
Unfortunately, all of us remember that sordid incident involving Sen. Larry Craig of Idaho and the undercover cop in the Minnesota airport restroom.
Seems that during a layover, Craig went out of his way to seek the restroom (public sex internet lists mentioned it). He got in a stall, made the kind of hand motions under the divider known only to other restroom sex enthusiasts, and got arrested. He later pled guilty to disorderly conduct and was put on a year's probation.


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