Tuesday, June 10, 2008

GLBT DIGEST - June 10, 2008

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Express Gay News
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-3 of 5 charges dropped for minister over lesbian wedding
A Presbyterian church court dropped three of five charges against, the Rev.Janet Edwards, but her trial for having performed a marriage ceremony for alesbian couple in 2005 will move forward.

-'Brokeback Mountain' to become opera: Scheduled to premiere in 2013
The New York City Opera commissioned Charles Wuorinen to compose an operabased on "Brokeback Mountain," the 1997 short story by Annie Proulx thatbecame the basis for a 2005 movie that won three Academy Awards.

-Gay men urged to out DUP members after MP's 'abomination' remark
Gay men in Northern Ireland were urged today to publicly "out" any member ofthe Democratic Unionist party they may have had sex with. OutRage! - the UKgay rights organisation - said it would be "entirely justified" to out anyunionist politician in the wake of remarks by DUP MP Iris Robinson.

-Accused Treated as Adult in Gay Student's Killing
Prosecutors' decision to charge Brandon McInerney, 14, as an adult in theshooting death of Larry King, 15, has divided the seaside town of Oxnard,Calif. McInerney is charged with premeditated murder and a hate crime in thekilling of King, an openly gay eighth-grader.

-He Sees Gay People
After my Memorial Day run at the Crown and Anchor in Ptown, I took a lovelylocal nine-seater CapeAir plane into Boston for the 27th Annual MA Bill ofRights dinner. The pilot was in training and kept reading the laminatedinstruction list. It was a quaint reminder of early flight. But if you wantto meet some real risk-takers, look no further than the honorees at the ACLUdinner. The founder of Boston's Wainright Bank, committed to progressivelending and minority ideals, disproves the real current mantra, "When bankscompete, you lose." While Errol Morris's film Standard Operating Procedureis certainly not what you'd call a date movie, he deserved the recognitionfor telling the back story of Abu Ghraib. Ironically, on the same day of therelease Scott McClellan's belated tell-all book What Happened, Watergate'sJohn Dean, was honored for his work. I asked him to please thank his son,Howard, for his good job rebuilding the Democratic Party.

-Hillary mentions gays twice in concession speech
During Sen. Hillary Clinton's concession speech on Saturday, she mentioned the gays not once, but twice!
She included her gay supporters in her thank yous: "18 million of you from all walks of life - women and men, young and old, Latino and Asian, African-American and Caucasian, rich, poor and middle class, gay andstraight - you have stood strong with me. And I will continue to stand strong with you, every time, every place, and every way that I can. The dreams we share are worth fighting for."

-Sexually Transmitted Infections and the City
One in four adults in New York City, according to a new study, are infectedwith the virus that causes genital herpes. (More than one herpes virus cancause sores on your genitals, which makes this genital-herpes-virus stuffconfusing, but that's for another post.) The headline seems alarming untilyou read the story, which points out that nearly one in five adults outsideNew York City are infected with the virus that causes herpes. So the rate inNYC is significantly higher, and that's worrisome, but it's not like folksin NYC are that much likelier to have herpes than folks in, say, Seattle.

National Gay News
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-Obama Issues Letter to LGBT Community,
Rallies Gay Supporters
The Obama campaign released video of the candidate thanking his campaignstaff in Chicago over the weekend. It's indicative of the transparency theinternet has brought and the willingness of the Obama campaign to utilizeit. [...] Obama also released a statement regarding gay pride month aswell as an open letter to the LGBT community (read it, AFTER THE JUMP)

-Anderson Cooper Not My Boo
Because news in America is increasingly becoming part reliable mediasource/part for profit business hodgepodge, CNN has launched a line oft-shirts playing off this week's awkward on air exchange between hostAnderson Cooper and political analyst Donna Brazile. The shirts, whichread, Anderson Cooper, 'You're Not My Boo', are available at CNN.com,playing off the exchange that went down this week between Cooper and theling time democratic political advisor.

-Marriage Fight Wastes Gay Dollars
The Human Rights Campaign, America's largest gay-rights group, recentlyannounced plans to spend at least a half-million dollars to defeat theCalifornia Marriage Protection Act. What a waste; gays and lesbians have farmore urgent needs. The Golden State constitutional amendment poses nosubstantive threat to them - it will take nothing away from same-sex couplesbut the word "marriage." Even if HRC wants Californians to vote no on theinitiative, $500,000 is a lot to spend on a struggle to retain an unpopularcourt victory that's only semantic and symbolic.

-Pride Parade Continues Despite Langford's Opposition
On Saturday, June 7, Birmingham opened its streets to Central Alabama's gay,lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) community. This was the 20th annualPride Parade and was hosted by Central Alabama Pride. The parade is a partof Central Alabama's annual pride week, which is called "The 10 Days ofPride," and also hosted by Central Alabama Pride every year. Thiscelebration encompasses everything from the Pride Parade to PRIDEFest, whichis a daylong event for the whole family.

-A Gay Rugby World Cup - Darling Please
Well how about this? News has just reached Lifting the Covers that there isto be a Gay Rugby World Cup which kicks-off in Dublin in Ireland on Friday.
Yes I kid you not. Now let me say straight away that I am all for gayrights, so why not stage a World Cup for them? Apparently it is thesecond-largest biennial amateur rugby tournament in the world. The 2006cup, which took place in New York, was the biggest yet. Thirty teams drawnfrom clubs around the world competed in the three-day tournament.

-Book Club: Openly Gay Cop Greg Miraglia
A cop's life is a tough one-but the life of a gay cop can be even moredifficult. Greg Miraglia, a cop for thirty years, now director of a policeacademy in California, is the author of Coming Out From Behind the Badge,stories of success and advice from police officers out on the job. Iinterviewed Greg at The 12th Annual International Conference of Gay andLesbian Criminal Justice Professionals, held recently in Washington, DC.

-Blacks, Jews and Gays Most Likely Victims of Hate Crimes
Blacks and Jews are most likely to be the victims of hate crimes in Canadaand youth aged 12 to 17 were often the perpetrators, according to researchreleased Monday by Statistics Canada. The study, which relies mostly onresearch by the Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, uses police-reporteddata on the race, religion and sexual orientation of victims ofhate-motivated incidents, ranging from property crimes to violent crimes.

-N.Y. Gay Couples Plan to Dash to Altar by Way of Calif.
Jeff Friedman and Andrew Zwerin were high school sweethearts on Long Island.
After college and graduate school, they returned to New York to RockvilleCentre. When they adopted Joshua, now 4, Friedman quit his job as a lawyerto be a stay-at-home dad. Despite deep roots in New York, they will fly toLos Angeles this month to plan what Friedman, 40, says will be "atraditional Jewish wedding" under a chuppa, or canopy, at a cousin's home onOct. 11.

-CDC Misses Mark With HIV Prevention Programs, Critics Say
Gay and bisexual men have been at the epicenter of the domestic AIDS crisissince the first cases were reported in 1981. But over the past few years theCenters for Disease Control & Prevention created funding structures thatdramatically reduced the number of HIV/AIDS prevention programs targetingthe population that has always been and continues to be at highest risk forcontracting HIV in America. In 1999, the CDC established the "Diffusion ofEffective Behavioral Interventions," which are scientifically supportedprevention programs, and are the only type of interventions funded directlyby CDC to community-based AID organizations. Of the 16 DEBIs the CDC fundedlast year, five were geared toward gay and bisexual men.

Marriage Equality News
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-NEW YORK - Four LGBT legal organizations and five other leading nationalLGBT groups have issued a statement entitled "Make Change, Not Lawsuits."
The statement explains that while couples who go to California to marryshould ask friends, neighbors and institutions to honor their marriages,they generally shouldn't sue. The statement says that ill-timed lawsuitsare likely to set the fight for marriage back, and that there are other waysto fight which are more likely to win.

-For insights into healthy marriages, social scientists are looking in anunexpected place.
A growing body of evidence shows that same-sex couples have a great deal toteach everyone else about marriage and relationships. Most studies showsurprisingly few differences between committed gay couples and committedstraight couples, but the differences that do emerge have shed light on thekinds of conflicts that can endanger heterosexual relationships. Thefindings offer hope that some of the most vexing problems are notnecessarily entrenched in deep-rooted biological differences between men andwomen. And that, in turn, offers hope that the problems can be solved.

-Eunice Brabec, a 69-year-old volunteer wedding official from South SanFrancisco, didn't feel right about performing the marriage of two men or twowomen. "I think that marriage is between a man and woman to have children,"said Brabec, one of two volunteer marriage commissioners in San Mateo Countywho decided to stop doing weddings to avoid doing same-sex ceremonies.
Elsewhere in California, at least one county clerk-recorder is suspendingwedding ceremonies for all couples rather than do same-sex marriagesstarting June 17. But despite occasional protests, many Bay Area countyclerks are hearing from a crop of volunteers who want to help officiate thesame-sex ceremonies.

-Registered domestic partners in Washington gain dozens of new rights andresponsibilities at midnight Thursday, when the bulk of the more than 320measures lawmakers passed this year kick in. Domestic partners registeredwith the state will get more than 170 of the rights and responsibilities ofmarriage. It's another step toward what supporters hope will eventually befull recognition of same-sex unions in the state.

-About 250 appointments for gay marriages have been made for later thismonth, including more than 50 for June 17, when same-sex nuptials becomelegal, the San Diego County Clerk's Office said. The most popular locationis the County Administration Center in downtown San Diego. There are 186wedding appointments at the center so far.

-The recent legalization of same-sex marriage in California will add anadditional $64 million to the state budget over the next three years,according to a new study released today by the Williams Institute for SexualOrientation Law and Public Policy. The study also found the state's weddingindustry will grow by approximately $683.8 million in the same period, bothfrom in-state marriages and the predicted 68,000 out-of-state couples whowill flock to California to wed starting June 17.

Pink News - UK
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-I am defending the word of God says "gay cure" MP
The wife of Northern Ireland's First Minister has said she is the victim ofa "witch hunt" trying to prevent Christians from speaking out againsthomosexuality.

-New bill will promote gay equality
A new equality bill seeking to actively promote equality for lesbian,bisexual and gay people will be formally announced in November's Queen'sspeech.

-Flying the Rainbow flag up to each British embassy
The sight of the international symbol of the gay community flying fromBritish embassy buildings in Riga and Warsaw in past weeks has been widelypraised as a symbol of the UK's commitment to gay rights.

-Gay tourists released from Gambian jail
Two Spanish tourists arrested in the Gambia for allegedly trying to solicitgay sex from taxi drivers have been released and left the country.

-Free 15 minute HIV tests available in Soho
A walk in clinic in the heart of London's gay village is encouraging gay andbi men to take advantage of their free, rapid HIV testing.

-Minister who called gay rugby 'apartheid' is sacked
Edwin Poots has been dropped from the Northern Ireland Executive after areshuffle. As minister for arts and culture he attacked the formation of agay rugby team in the province.

-US company helps HIV+ men become fathers
Men living with HIV are finding new hope of creating biological familieswith their own sperm through a new programme created by the California-basedGrowing Generations.

-Gay groups gain observer status at UN
One of Europe's best-known gay rights organisations has been recommended for consultative status at the United Nations.

-US abandons UN human rights body
The United States has announced plans to distance itself from the UN HumanRights council - an action that has been said to "fail victims of abuse."

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-As Father's Day Nears, Focus on the Family Attacks Fathers and Charity
Focus on the Family has joined with TiVo to turn Father's Day 2008 into aback-door political attack against gay fathers. The TiVo "SuperDad" campaigninvites people to nominate fathers as SuperDads; Focus' involvement ensuresthat gay fathers and their families will be excluded. TiVo's ties to Focuson the Family are no accident, according to a TiVo representative who spokewith Joe.My.God Average Gay Joe. The Family Equality Council is organizing aletter-writing campaign to TiVo in support of gay fathers. In addition todiscriminating against gay fathers and their offspring, Focus and its localbranches and antifamily allies in California plan this year to divert $30million dollars from more charitable endeavors into their petty war againstmarriage.

-Yesterday's Obama LGBT Conference Call By Chris Crain
Last evening the Obama campaign held a conference call with 1200 LGBTactivists from around the country in order to update people on campaignplans moving forward. The first order of business was to invite gays whowere Senator Clinton supporters into the Obama family. After a short welcomefrom Obama's Deputy Campaign Manager (and LGBT community member) SteveHildebrand, Elizabeth Birch, former head of the Human Rights campaign (HRC),recounted how it felt to be a long time Hillary Clinton supporter at thismoment, now that the nomination has slipped from her grasp. She described animmense sadness and repeatedly alluded to how you feel when you see a"vanquished warrior" or "fallen warrior." Birch has two children of mixedrace, a daughter and a son. She confided that although she was hoping thather daughter would see that it was possible for a woman to become presidentof the United States, now she realizes that it was just as important for herson to see that a person of color can become president. Her message was thatafter a period mourning, Clinton supporters should rally around Obama. It isimperative that Obama prevails for LBT rights to move forward.

-Boos and Cheers for a Homecoming King
Eighteen-year-old Kyle Hutchinson accomplished something that no one at RedMountain High School in Mesa, Arizona, has ever done before. He was crownedking of the high school prom as an openly gay man.
Kyle's parents were present when he was crowned king Saturday night amidcheers and boos:

-Franken Wins Endoresment for Senate in Minnesota
Al Franken won a resounding endorsement for the U.S. Senate on Saturday fromMinnesota Democrats, quickly dispatching with concerns about jokes thatoffended some and promising a tough challenge to Republican Sen. NormColeman. "To the people of Minnesota, let me say this: I'm not a perfectperson," said Franken, a former "Saturday Night Live" writer and performer.
"I'm not going to pretend to have all the answers. But I'll tell the truth,I will keep my spine, and I will work for you."

-McCain Adviser: The Press Want to 'Convince Everyone that the Economy is inRecession' to Hurt McCain
In his Bloomberg column today, Kevin Hassett of the American EnterpriseInstitute charges that the news media is guilty of a "politically motivatedpessimism" when it pushes "the idea that the U.S. is in a terriblerecession." Hassett, who is an economic adviser to Sen. John McCain (R-AZ),argues that the "Democratic-leaning press" may be trying to "influence theelection" against McCain:

-US Leads Soaring Levels of Military Spending
World military spending grew 45 percent in the past decade, with the UnitedStates accounting for nearly half of all expenditure, the StockholmInternational Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said Monday. Militaryspending grew six percent last year alone, according to SIPRI's annualreport. In 2007, 1,339 billion dollars (851 billion euros) was spent on armsand other military expenditure, corresponding to 2.5 percent of global grossdomestic product, or GDP - or 202 dollars for each of the world's 6.6billion people. The United States spends by far the most towards militaryaims, dishing out 547 billion dollars last year, or 45 percent of globalexpenditure.

-Conpicuous by Their Absence
Three Yemeni female journalists chat with a British human rights workerabout the discrimination they face in their profession. It's not only inYemen - studies have shown that female journalists are marginalizedworldwide. Rome - Observe any summit picture - you won't find many women.
The mystery of female underrepresentation in the echelons of power persists:after so many decades of the feminist movement, why are women at the helmscarce? A look at the media sector may provide some answers.

How friendly toward gays is McCain? by Deb Price
Think you know Sen. John McCain? That's what the nation's largestgay-rights organization is asking voters.
A maverick? An independent? A moderate? Not so, the Human Rights Campaignargues forcefully in a new video at its hrc.org Web site that uses filmclips capturing key moments in McCain's political career to back up itswarning that a McCain presidency would mean "four more years of anti-gaypolicy in the White House."

Forwarded from Gays Without Borders
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-Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) groups in Asia have agreed todevelop an international network to advocate protection of their rights intheir respective countries and at the regional level. Bali hosted aconference of the groups from June 2 to 6 in the tourism enclave Nusa Dua.
The conference was attended by 21 participants from eight countries --Indonesia, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, China andThailand. "We agreed to make some kind of international network to advocateprotection of LGBT rights in our countries," Rido Triawan, head of ArusPelangi, an Indonesian non-governmental organization that fights for LGBTrights, told *The Jakarta Post* on Saturday.

From Transgender Equality
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-In Syria, Gay Iraqis Seek New Life - 06.09.2008
Damascus, Syria - Maybe one of the of most difficult situations that anIraqi could be in is to be gay, the Iraqi society in general discriminateagainst the gay and transsexual people, normally they consider them aspeople who left their gender and changed for sexual want. Even though mostgay people of Iraq have managed to live their lives, being born gay isalmost the same as being born with an assurance of death. Most Iraqis don'taccept that homosexuality is something you're born with, or which isassigned by your genes. Due to the Iraqi cultural and religious beliefs, homosexuality is forbidden and considered amortal sin, and in many cases the penalty of death is assigned as thesolution for it.

Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
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-"Lithuania risks EU sanctions over new amendments to the Law on EqualTreatment."
On 10 June 2008 the Parliament of Lithuania (Seimas) will vote on deleting"sexual orientation" as one of the grounds of forbidden discrimination inthe Law on Equal Treatment. This will mean that Lithuanian citizens andvisitors to the country will not be protected against unequal treatment, sopaving the way for discrimination in access to services and goods. This willalso diminish the possibility of effective redress in discrimination casesin employment, which is against Employment Directive.
The European Parliament's Intergroup on Gay and Lesbian Rights calls uponLithuania to respect all citizens equally and keep the protection againstdiscrimination on grounds of sexual orientation in the Law on EqualTreatment.

Call Your Senators NOW:
Help Improve Medical Treatment for People with HIV/AIDS
HIV/AIDS advocates around the country have been working hard to convince theSenate Finance Committee to pass a law that would close an important gap intreatment access for people with HIV/AIDS by allowing ADAP expenditures tocount towards Medicare Part D true out of pocket costs. The Committee haschosen to ignore the needs of people living with HIV/AIDS by failing toinclude this provision in a Medicare reform bill. This provision would costfar less than 1% of what the Senate proposes to spend on other Medicareimprovements and would improve the lives of countless people living withHIV/AIDS around the country. What you can do: Call your two U.S. Senatorsin their Washington, DC office. Ask to speak to the legislative aide whohandles health care issues.
Contact rays.list@comcast.net for the full article.

Go to this link for the following articles:

-Court Upholds Don't Ask Don't Tell
A federal appeals court has upheld a lower court ruling that the militarydid not violate the constitutional rights of 12 gay and lesbianservicemembers when it discharged them.

-UN: New HIV Infections Outpace Drug Treatment
Despite a stepped up global battle against AIDS, the numbers of people newlyinfected with HIV are far and away outpacing the numbers beginningantiretroviral drug treatments, U.N. officials say.

-Study Examines Factors In LGBT Teen Suicides
A University of Arizona professor is embarking on a major study to determinethe root causes of the high rate of suicide among LGBT youth.

-Sexuality Behind One In Ten Hate Crimes In Canada
Hate-motivated incidents account for a relatively small proportion of crimein Canada, and those that occur are most commonly related to race orethnicity, says a new study.

-Study: 1 In 4 NYC Adults Has Herpes
A city Health Department study finds that more than a fourth of adult NewYorkers are infected with the virus that causes genital herpes.

-Charges Dropped Against NY Gay Couple In Marriage Protest
Trespassing charges have been dropped against a middle-aged gay couple
arrested in April when they refused to leave the town clerk's office afterbeing refused a marriage license.

-Gays March In European Capitals Where Rights Under Attack
Gays and lesbians staged large LGBT pride marches over the weekend inWarsaw, Rome and Athens, three European capitals where their rights areunder fire.


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1 comment:

Stella said...

The final version of the Democratic Platform is being hailed as the most LGBT inclusive to date by queer activists and politicians alike despite the fact that the words gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender do not appear in the text of the platform, according to those who have read the document.

Alabama Drug Treatment