Thursday, June 12, 2008

GLBT DIGEST - June 12, 2008

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New York Times
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-Norway: New Rights Granted to Gays
The Parliament granted gay and lesbian couples the right to marry and toadopt children on an equal basis with heterosexual couples. The country'snew universal marriage act, which also allows lesbians to be artificiallyinseminated in Norwegian medical facilities, supersedes a domesticpartnership policy. "No longer will there be different classes of love,"Erling Lae, the chief commissioner of Oslo, told an online newspaper minutesafter the Parliament's 84-41 vote, adding that he now plans to marry hismale companion of 26 years.

-What Women Want (Maybe)
LADIES! Behold the splendor of the nude male form: sleek and powerful, amiracle of sculpted sinew, striding confidently across the sand orstretching out before you in ever-uncoiling glory.

Washington Post
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-CIRCUIT COURT: Judge Sides With Foes Of Transgender Measure
Montgomery Voters Might Yet Decide Whether to Accept Law's Protections
A Montgomery County judge sided with opponents of broad new protections for transgender individuals yesterday in an initial ruling on a local referendumeffort. But Circuit Court Judge Robert A. Greenberg has not decidedwhether Montgomery voters will have a chance in November to accept or rejecta law passed by the County Council in the fall that prohibits discriminationbased on a person's gender identity.

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-Southern Baptists Wary Of McCain
Four years ago, the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign hosted a reception forSouthern Baptist pastors at a hotel across the street from their annualmeeting.

-Clinton Supporters Behind Obama
They may not be falling in love, but they're falling in line. In several keystates this week, Obama is being joined on stages by top Democrats who, afew weeks ago, were working to deny him the nomination.

-Obama Adds To Gay Outreach
Democrat Barack Obama has added two longtime gay advocates to his LGBTelection team.

-Norway Parliament Approves Gay Marriage
The gallery at the Norwegian Parliament erupted in applause and cheers onWednesday with the passage of legislation allowing same-sex couples tomarry.

-Rights Group Calls On Uganda To Drop Charges Against Gay Activists
The arrest of three sexual rights activists during a peaceful demonstrationto raise awareness about LGBT issues shows the Ugandan government'sdetermination to enforce silence around sexuality and HIV/AIDS, Human RightsWatch said in a letter to Minister of Justice and Attorney General EdwardKiddu Makubuya on Wednesday.

-Crist Signs Florida Inclusive Bully Law
Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (R) has signed legislation that requires schooldistricts to prohibit bullying and harassment.

-Former Official Sues NASCAR Claiming Harassment
As an aspiring racing official, Mauricia Grant had grown used to working ina man's world.

Steve Rothaus
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-Habitat for Humanity ends Planned Parenthood deal
Habitat for Humanity, a Christian ministry which among other worthwhile projects, builds homes for homeless, has backed out of a deal to partner with Planned Parenthood to build a new abortion clinic in Sarasota, Florida. After a torrent of phone calls and e-mails, the board of directors for Habitat's Sarasota branch voted to "dissociate" itself from the project. Habitat for Humanity issued the following statement: "Habitat for Humanity of Sarasota has declined a donation of land from Planned Parenthood, accepting the land would not be in the best interests of our ongoing work in the community, the families we seek to serve, or the broader Habitat for Humanity community."

Express Gay News
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-Baldwin discusses gay bills in Congressional limbo
Washington elite gather to consider D.P. benefits for federal employees
The only open lesbian in the U.S. House of Representatives is predictingthat in the next session of Congress, bills related to employmentnon-discrimination and hate crimes will be more successful than legislationaimed at repealing the Defense of Marriage Act and "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

-SLDN hires gay Va. lawmaker
Ebbin takes role as communications director
Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) - the organization leading thefight against the U.S. military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy - hassigned on Adam Ebbin, the only openly gay member of the Virginia GeneralAssembly, as its new communications director.

-Resolution at Southern Baptist Convention seeks Fort Worth church's ouster
A North Carolina pastor has recommended that Broadway Baptist Church in FortWorth be ousted from the Southern Baptist Convention, saying it encourageshomosexuality.

-Norway adopts gay marriage law
Norway's parliament on Wednesday adopted a new marriage law that allowshomosexuals to marry and adopt children and permits lesbians to beartificially inseminated.

-Defamation suit against gay men settled out of court
A defamation lawsuit by a Pointe Claire man seeking $400,000 in damages fromtwo gay neighbours - following events that drew massive media coveragebeginning in 2001 - has been settled on the eve of a civil trial.

National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/
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-South Carolina: Man Charged In Death Of Gay Man To Enter Plea
The man charged in the 2007 death of a gay man outside a Greenville Countynightclub will enter a plea on Wednesday. Deputies said 20-year-old SeanKennedy was attacked on May 16, 2007, in the parking lot of the former Brew's nightclub by Stephen Moller because Kennedy was gay. Kennedy later died fromhis injuries.

- LA Mayor Says He'll Happily Perform Gay Weddings
Officials across California are eagerly anticipating next week's date when gay marriages will be allowed. Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who is scheduled to be in Israel when the ban is lifted June 17, said he has taken the steps to allow him to perform weddings. "I've told a number of couples that I will be happy to preside," the mayor said last week. "I will marry as many people as possible."

-Gays Who Wed in California
Won't Have Equal Marriage Rights
Thousands of gay couples will marry in California during the upcomingmonths, but when it comes to the law, not all marriages are created equal.Same-sex married couples can expect many of the same marital rights asheterosexual couples under state law. But things will be different if theyend up in bankruptcy court, take a leave from work or own a vacation homeout of state. In those areas, federal law comes into play, and the federalgovernment does not recognize marriages between lesbians or gay men.

Marriage Equality News
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-Bishop Marc Andrus of the Diocese of California is encouraging all couples,regardless of sexual orientation, to obtain secular marriages before seekingthe church's blessing, as a way to support same-gender couples and "ourcontinued witness to God's inclusive love." "For too long the onus hasfallen on marginalized people to bear the burden of inequalities that existwithin the Church, and the decision by our state's Supreme Court has givenus the opportunity to level the playing field," Andrus wrote in a recentpastoral letter to clergy and lay leaders of the San Francisco-baseddiocese.

-Palm Springs:
With the state's gay marriage ban about to be lifted, Palm Springs MayorSteve Pougnet and City Council members Ginny Foat and Rick Hutcheson expectto be busy over the next several months performing civil marriage ceremoniesfor gay and lesbian couples looking to tie the knot. The trio, who are allopenly gay, have been deputized to perform marriages throughout the county.

-As thousands of gay couples across the country prepare to marry inCalifornia next week, many states are girding for a surge of complex andpolitically charged legal challenges when newlyweds return to their homestates. "Because California is so much more populous than Massachusetts(which has allowed same-sex marriage since 2004), and it welcomes peoplefrom every jurisdiction, there will be far more couples moving or returningto the other 49," said William Araiza, a professor at Loyola Law School inLos Angeles. "Many more states will have to deal with the legal fallout."

-Although religious beliefs have long undergirded much of the opposition tosame-sex marriage, some Inland ministers and rabbis believe that same-sexunions can be just as holy as opposite-sex ones. They're preparing toperform weddings that will bestow a religious blessing on ceremonies that,beginning Tuesday, will be recognized under state law. Most major U.S.religious denominations believe homosexual activity and same-sex marriageare wrong. The Roman Catholic Church, most Protestant denominations, Islamand the Orthodox branch of Judaism are among those opposed to same-gendermarriage. Under the court ruling, clergy are free to continue restrictingweddings to opposite-sex couples.

-Florida: The News-Press did a disservice to the people of Southwest Florida by
labeling Amendment 2 as a "gay marriage" amendment. ("Vote on Gay MarriageHeats in Fla.; California legalization shapes debate here." June 2). Same-sex couples are a small minority of those who will be affected if thisproposed Florida constitutional amendment passes this November. The sponsorsof Amendment 2 are misleading people (very effectively it seems) intobelieving this amendment is about gay marriage. That's just not true.In fact, since same-sex marriage is already against the law in Florida, thisamendment is not about "gay marriage" at all. The language of this proposedamendment has the illusion of being straightforward. It is not.

Pink News - UK
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-Outrage as Budapest Pride banned by police
Gay rights activists have reacted angrily to news that the chief of policein Budapest has decided that a Pride march planned for July 5th willinterfere with traffic and therefore will not go ahead.

-Homosexuals can change claims Iris's "lovely" psychiatrist
A psychiatrist in Northern Ireland has defended his practice of treating menfor unwanted same-sex attraction.

-Norway's new gay marriage law also grants new parental rights
New legislation on same-sex marriage approved by the Norwegian parliamentyesterday also extends parenting rights for gay and lesbian couples.

-Christian Institute weighs into "gay cure" row
A Christian group notorious for its opposition to gay rights has backed anMP who said homosexuality is disgusting, loathsome, nauseating, wicked andvile and claimed gay people can be "cured."

-Greek same-sex couples excluded from new co-habitation law
Greece's government will introduce legislation to allow unmarriedheterosexual couples to register their relationships.

-Madonna's estranged brother to write tell-all book
He served as the artistic director for Truth or Dare and then again for herGirlie Show Tour. Then, by most accounts, Madonna and brother ChristopherCiccone had a falling out.

-Obama campaign appoints director of LGBT Vote
Throughout the campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, SenatorHillary Clinton enjoyed the overwhelming support of the gay and lesbiancommunity.

-Lesbian parents get new rights in New South Wales
The rights of lesbian parents in New South Wales, Australia have beenexpanded under laws passed by the state government.

-Your job is to protect all citizens, Gambian leader told
A New York-based human rights group has said that the President of theGambia is failing in his responsibility to ensure respect for the rights ofall.

-Equal treatment bill stalls in Lithuanian parliament
Not enough MPs turned up to vote for a new equality law in the Lithuanianparliament yesterday and the legislation will have to be rescheduled.

-Fatwa condemns Gambian gay execution threat as unsound
An Islamic cleric based in Texas has issued a fatwa condeming GambianPresident Yahya Jammeh's threat of the execution of every gay person in hiscountry as theologically unsound.

-Comedy, music and literature at Europe's biggest lesbian event
Tickets for the York Lesbian Arts Festival (YLAF) 2008, Europe's biggestlesbian event, are on sale. The four day event returns to York this October.

-Brazilian President calls homophobia a "perverse disease"
The president of Brazil has become the first nation leader to launch aconference with the sole purpose of promoting gay equality.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-RI: Judge Points to Way Court Might Consider Same-Sex Issue
A Superior Court judge yesterday raised the question of whether it'sconstitutional for Rhode Island to block divorces for same-sex couplesmarried in Massachusetts. Two Providence women, Margaret R. Chambers andCassandra B. Ormiston, married in Fall River in 2004 after Massachusettsbecame the first state to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples, andin 2006 the couple sought Rhode Island's first same-sex divorce in FamilyCourt. But in a December 2007 decision that drew national attention, adivided state Supreme Court ruled that Family Court lacked jurisdiction togrant the divorce. The majority said that under the 1961 law that createdFamily Court, the word "marriage" meant just one thing - the union of a manand a woman.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-RI: Judge Points to Way Court Might Consider Same-Sex Issue
PROVIDENCE - A Superior Court judge yesterday raised the question of whetherit's constitutional for Rhode Island to block divorces for same-sex couplesmarried in Massachusetts. Two Providence women, Margaret R. Chambers andCassandra B. Ormiston, married in Fall River in 2004 after Massachusettsbecame the first state to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples, andin 2006 the couple sought Rhode Island's first same-sex divorce in FamilyCourt. But in a December 2007 decision that drew national attention, adivided state Supreme Court ruled that Family Court lacked jurisdiction togrant the divorce. The majority said that under the 1961 law that createdFamily Court, the word "marriage" meant just one thing - the union of a manand a woman.

-Baldwin Discusses Gay Bills in Congressional Limbo
The only open lesbian in the U.S. House of Representatives is predictingthat in the next session of Congress, bills related to employmentnon-discrimination and hate crimes will be more successful than legislationaimed at repealing the Defense of Marriage Act and "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc.) made the comments today at a Center forAmerican Progress forum geared toward highlighting the importance of theDomestic Partner Benefits and Obligations Act, which would grant thepartners of gay federal employees the same benefits that are available tothe spouses of straight counterparts. Sen. Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) joinedBaldwin in the panel discussion. Other speakers at the event included formerSecretary of State Madeleine Albright and former U.S. Ambassador to RomaniaMichael Guest, who resigned his 26-year career as a foreign service officerlast year in protest of federal employment practices. Baldwin said she is"very optimistic" that ENDA and a hate crimes measure would pass Congressnext session, particularly if Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama,who has supported these initiatives, take the White House. Read more

-The Milquetoast Manifesto
What if the evangelicals wrote a manifesto and nobody cared? It was supposedto be a decisive document, a credo that unified American evangelicals aroundthe Christian principles that form the foundations of their faith. It wouldrestore to American evangelicals a sense of mission and history-giving thempermission to look beyond party politics for their values while at the sametime urging them to be orthodox and ethical in their lives and in the world.Instead, "An Evangelical Manifesto" was released three weeks ago to almostno fanfare. Aside from a handful of news stories and some dutifulintervarsity sniping online, the fallout from the "Evangelical Manifesto"was-and continues to be-less than earth-shattering. The idea for themanifesto was born three years ago in the mind of Os Guinness, aVirginia-based evangelical intellectual. He was inspired to write it, hetold NEWSWEEK, after speaking with people who were so disillusioned with theway that evangelicals were conducting themselves in politics-and with theway they were portrayed in the press-that they no longer cared to labelthemselves "evangelical." So together with people like Richard Mouw,president of Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif., and DavidNeff, editor of Christianity Today, Guinness drafted his manifesto: sevenChristian principles that every evangelical could agree on.Read more

-Join the 'Out' Club
While in the secular world some colleges are debating whether to designatespecial restrooms for transgendered students, Christian colleges arepondering whether to allow gay students to organize at all. Andy Swenson isan unlikely revolutionary. Raised in a conservative Lutheran household, hegrew up believing that homosexuality was a sin. He arrived on the campus ofBethel University in St. Paul, Minn., and happily agreed to sign itscovenant, a statement of beliefs and forbidden practices that wedged"homosexual behavior" between "drunkenness" and "lying." "I was, like,'Yeah, it is a sin'." As the semesters went by, Swenson could not keeppretending. He started telling his friends that he was gay. Now, for morethan a year, Swenson has been one of about a dozen students intent onorganizing an official gay-straight alliance at Bethel. The group fliesunder the radar. It doesn't have a room, so the students meet near thecafeteria. It doesn't have a faculty adviser. Getting approval won't beeasy-"a student group can't conflict with our mission or core values," aspokeswoman says-but next year Swenson's group, which still has no name,plans to submit the paperwork anyway. America's Christian colleges may bethe last bastion of traditional values-places where parents can continue, inabsentia, to protect their children from the corrupting influences of theworld and where the kids themselves often promise, as Swenson did, toabstain not just from homosexual sex but from premarital sex, adultery andinappropriate fondling-and greed, idolatry and slander. But as homosexualityceases to be a cultural taboo, evangelicals increasingly have had to grappleopenly with the question of how to deal with the gays and lesbians in theirmidst; last week Rick Warren announced that he was welcoming a group of gayfathers to his church for Father's Day. Now, even on very conservativeChristian campuses, there are gays who are "out" and who want theirauthority figures to recognize them-and their sexuality-as deserving of God's love. Thanks largely to the efforts of Soul Force, which encourages dialoguebetween gays and Christians on campus, these students are trying to getorganized. Read more

-McCain's VP Short-Lister Bobby Jindal's Exorcist Work
The very young governor of Louisiana is allegedly on John McCain's VP shortlist, but this little bit of news should tank his prospects for selection. Bobby Jindal, the 36-year old governor of Louisiana, is being taken seriously by the national press as a candidate on the shortlist to be John McCain's Vice President. No one doubts that he's a political prodigy - his impressive resume includes stints as president of the state universitysystem, a Congressman and now governor. But one of Jindal's job titles hasn't gotten much attention - and it just might prompt a few questions if his Veep candidacy gains steam: Exorcist. We've discovered that in an essay Jindal wrote in 1994 for the New Oxford Review, a serious right-wing Catholic journal, Jindal narrated a bizarre story of a personal encounter with a demon, in which he participated in an exorcism with a group ofcollege friends. And not only did they cast out the supernatural spirit that had possessed his friend, Jindal wrote that he believes that their ritual may well have cured her cancer. It sounds like Jindal has a bright future as a competitor of Benny Hinn.

-Anti-Gays Indoctrinate Student with Their Violent Lifestyle
Two teen girls beat the shitake out of a fellow freshman today in the hallsof Michigan's Wayland Union High School, leaving the victim with facialinjuries. And the reason for the scuffle? Well, this from local news sourceWOOD TV: The suspects told police the girl was a gay-rights advocate andthat she was trying to impose her views on them. They didn't like it, andthey told police they didn't see anything wrong with what they did. Yes,that's right - it's no longer stealing boyfriends, talking sh*t behind eachothers' backs, or looking prettier in a certain dress that's leading highschool girls to turn to fisticuffs. It's now the mere idea that a gay rightsactivist is trying to "impose her views" that's leading to teen-on-teenviolence. Gee, wonder what sort of cultural phenomenon is leading to thisadolescent trend?
Read more

-Dobson's Lack of Support Won't Hurt McCain
Colorado Republicans need to focus on fiscal restraint and smallgovernment - and avoid social issues - if they want to reassert themselvesagainst the well-funded and well-organized Democratic Party that has emergedin the Centennial State over the last four years, a panel of experts toldThe Denver Post on a PoliticsWest webcast. Colorado GOP chairman DickWadhams also said that Focus on the Family founder James Dobson's comments that he would not vote for the party's presumptive nominee, John McCain, won't hurt the Arizona senator. "I got to tell you, I constantly go to Republicanevents and speak to them and participate in them and I don't perceive thatattitude among social conservatives in Colorado," Wadhams said. "In fact,our delegation to the national convention, I haven't done an actual count,but we have a significant number of social conservatives and they aresolidly behind Sen. McCain. And so I just don't perceive any problem on thatfront." Dobson, the evangelical Christian leader who endorsed PresidentBush in 2004, opposes McCain. He said in February, "I am convinced Sen.McCain is not a conservative, and in fact, has gone out of his way to stickhis thumb in the eyes of those who are."Read more


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1 comment:

Digger said...

I linked to and quoted your post at