Sunday, January 04, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - January 04, 2009

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New York Times
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-Politics: Push for Gay Marriage Meets Election Concerns
NEW JERSEY has never appeared so close to - and yet so far from - enacting gay marriage. Gov. Jon S. Corzine; Richard J. Codey, the State Senate president; and Joseph J. Roberts Jr., leader of the Democratic-controlled Assembly, have all recently stated publicly that gay marriage is an idea whose time has come. Echoing the sentiments of a state commission report released last month, some state officials said that civil unions - the closest thing to marriage available to gay couples in the state - were woefully inadequate and that the legalization of gay marriage in New Jersey was not a matter of "if" but "when."

-Screenwriting Drafts of History
IT is only fitting that the extraordinary political year would give way to the season of the political biopic. With terse titles that grandly promise the last word on their subject, Gus Van Sant's "Milk," Oliver Stone's "W." and Steven Soderbergh's "Che" all deal with once- (or still-) incendiary political figures.

-Modern Love: Facing My Obsession, in the Flesh
I WAS 24 years old, three hours from home and waiting for a stranger at 1 a.m. in a deserted grocery store parking lot on the California coast. There was, I knew, the distinct possibility that this guy (who claimed his name was Mike) didn't exist, at least not in his advertised form - 22 and paranoid that his girlfriend would find out that he occasionally had sex with guys.

-Op-Ed Columnist: If This Isn't Slavery, What Is?
PHNOM PENH, Cambodia
Barack Obama's presidency marks a triumph over the legacy of slavery, so it would be particularly meaningful if he led a new abolitionist movement against 21st-century slavery - like the trafficking of girls into brothels.

-A Rise in Efforts to Spot Abuse in Youth Dating
She was 17 when she met her boyfriend, and 20 when she died at his hands. In between, Heather Norris tried several times to leave the relationship, which was fraught with control and abuse, before she was killed - stabbed, dismembered and discarded in trash bags.

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-White House "family values" may deter push for same-sex marriage
Douglas C. Lyons
The president-elect, and his wife, America's new "mom-in-chief," decided to put their girls in private school. It's the best "fit for what the daughters need right now," they say. The girls, the first preteens to occupy the White House in a while, will get their puppy in the spring, and they're OK with that. The youngest of the two, following their first tour of their new home, says she believes studying on the desk once used by Abraham Lincoln might be inspiring.,0,6259679.column

Steve Rothaus
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-VIDEO: Sam Adams takes oath as Portland's chief executive

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-Gay-friendly rental car companies
By Jenny Hagel
Last summer, my partner and I flew to North Carolina for a friend's wedding. When we arrived at the Avis counter to pick up our rental car, I asked if I could add her as an additional driver, and was told it would cost $35. As the woman behind the counter ran my credit card, she casually drawled, "Yep. It's thirty-five dollars unless you're co-workers, spouses or domestic partners." My partner and I exchanged a look and I knew we were both thinking the same thing: "Is it worth thirty-five dollars to convince someone that we're gay? In public? In a red state?" Thriftiness got the best of me and I blurted out, "We're a couple!" "Okay, then," the woman smiled, "let me cancel that charge."

Pink News - UK
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-Gay club clashes with local council over 'kinky' sign
By Rachel Charman
Kinky Boots cabaret club in Darleston has resisted an order by local authorities to remove a sign outside its premises showing a man in knee-length PVC boots. The club insists that the boards on which the images are mounted are in place to stop vandals smashing the club's windows, as has happened before.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-Woman Claims College "Turned" Her Gay
by Kilian Melloy |
EDGE Contributor | Edge Boston
A recent topic of discussion at conservative chat site Free an April, 2005 article from the Web site of a conservative talk-show host who interviewed a young woman, then in college, about her sexual orientation-from the perspective that college "taught" her to be gay. The original article, which was posted at the Web site of The Dennis Prager Show on April 19, 2005, claimed that by "honoring" homosexuality-through media depictions of lesbians on the TV series "The L Word," for example-society was encouraging young people to "choose" homosexuality. The item cited an article that appeared in McGill University's student paper. The article, by Anna Montrose, then a student at McGill, read, in part, "It's hard to go through four years of a Humanities B.A. reading [French intellectual Michae] Foucault and [UC Berkeley gender studies theorist Judith] Butler and watching [the lesbian-centered TV series] "[The] L Word" and keep your rigid heterosexuality intact." Continued McGill's article, "I don't know when it happened exactly, but it seems I no longer have the easy certainty of pinning my sexual desire to one gender and never the other." Read more

-Religious Gay Man Advocates for Celibacy
by Kilian Melloy
A self-professed Christian with gay feelings has decided that his personal path is as a celibate man-and declares in an article that his personal choice is the only correct one for other gays of his faith, as well. Ed Pacht, in an article written for publication that was not accepted by its intended outlet, posted his article at Poetreader on Dec. 30. Pacht briefly described his early religious upbringing and his conversion to the Episcopalian faith before going on to become a Pentecostal and Evangelical clergyman, before returning to the Episcopalian faith. In the course of the article, Pacht describes having grown up "not entirely a typical boy" who "was always both drawn to and nervous in the presence of other boys, and associated most easily with the girls." Added Pacht, "In high school I was often called such things as 'queer', simply because of that difference, though I didn't yet even know what homosexuality was. Read more

-Open Lesbian, Others on Obama Transition Team Set Off the Right
by Kilian Melloy | EDGE Contributor | Edge Boston
For eight years, the Bush administration was a dream come true for conservatives. Now, seeing that dream come to an end is hard for some on the right-especially as they watch President-elect Barack Obama accept as transition advisers individuals the right deems to be "too liberal" for their taste-a team that includes a number of openly gay and lesbian members. Among them, according to a Jan. 2 article in The Washington Post is Roberta Achtenberg, whose nomination for assistant housing secretary during the Clinton years was opposed by the right and whose confirmation was delayed by the late Jesse Helms, who called Achtenberg a "damn lesbian."

-GA: Fauver Picks Up Gay Challenger in Atlanta City Council Race
Matt Schafer | Southern Voice
The only openly gay member of the Atlanta City Council will face at least one opponent in the Nov. 3 election. Charlie Stadtlander, a former member of the Log Cabin Republicans, will officially declare his candidacy on Jan. 7. Stadtlander, who is gay, is an elementary school teacher who moved to Atlanta two years ago and quickly involved himself in the city's political scene. He will oppose two-term Council member Anne Fauver for the District 6 seat. "Although I've been here two years, I moved here after college," Stadtlander said. "I've fallen in love with Atlanta and I've watched under Anne Fauver's tenure our city has fallen into a financial crisis." Stadtlander's campaign website includes an extensive campaign team featuring many who are well-known in gay Atlanta. Among them are Frances Ann Moran and Ebonee Bradford, campaign co-chairs; Jamie Ensley, treasurer; and Tracy Elliott, health and wellness policy advisor. Read more

-Warren and Obama Walk Hand in Hand
By Paul Proctor |
American Family Association's news editor, Ed Vitagliano, ended 2008 with a curious column at their affiliated website titled, Praying for the new president, where he chastised's founder and editor Joseph Farah for taking Pastor Rick Warren to task for accepting President-elect Barack Obama's invitation to lead the invocation at his upcoming inauguration. In Farah's open letter to Rick Warren, published at WND, he wrote: "I'm sure you would not want to invoke God's blessing on the inauguration of a figure like Adolf Hitler, whose rise to power brought the destruction of millions of lives." Calling it a "non sequitur," Vitagliano countered Farah in his article, saying: "Just because one prays for Adolph Hitler does not mean the prayer is meant to 'invoke God's blessing.' One could, conceivably, pray for Hitler's conversion, or for God to prevent the man from carrying out his wicked plans."

-Ohio: Ministers Oppose Cleveland's Gay Partner Registry
On Top Magazine
A group of ministers is leading an effort to repeal Cleveland's recently passed gay domestic partner registry, reports Cleveland daily The Plain Dealer. United Pastors in Mission, a group of mostly black ministers led by president Rev. C. Jay Matthews of the Mount Sinai Baptist Church and director Rev. Marvin McMickle of Antioch Baptist Church, made the announcement at a Tuesday press conference at Matthews' church. Cleveland city leaders approved the registry at a Monday December 8 session by a 13-7 vote. All of the seven lawmakers who voted against the measure were black. Ward 1 councilman Terrell Pruitt admitted he was pressured to vote against the registry: "I couldn't risk having the ministers, who don't have all the facts, on the pulpits preaching against me on Sunday." Read more

-Let's Pledge to Stop Being Stupid about Teen Sex
By Ellen Goodman | Truthdig
I hate to bring this up right now when the ink is barely dry on your New Year's resolution. But if history is any guide, you are likely to fall off the assorted wagons to which you are currently lashed. I don't say this to disparage your willpower. Hang onto that celery stick for dear life. And even if you stop doing those stomach crunches and start sneaking out for a smoke, at least you can comfort yourself with fond memories of your moment of resolution. Compare that to the statistic in the newest research about teens who pledge sexual abstinence. The majority not only break the pledge, they forget they ever made it. This study of teens and pledges comes from Johns Hopkins researcher Janet Rosenbaum, who took a rigorous look at nearly 1,000 students. She compared teens who took a pledge of abstinence with teens of similar backgrounds and beliefs who didn't. She found absolutely no difference in their sexual behavior, or the age at which they began having sex, or the number of their partners. Read more

-NV: Vegas Teen Kissed Teacher after Killing Him
The Associated Press | Las Vegas Sun
A 17-year-old who told police that he and his brother strangled a high school choir teacher said the teacher made him uncomfortable with sexual advances the night the teens killed him, according to an arrest report. The juvenile and his 18-year-old brother were being held Tuesday in the Dec. 21 slaying of Matthew Cox, 32, who taught at Basic High School in Henderson. The youth told police that he and his brother were at Cox's home in Henderson, with his brother downstairs playing video games while he was upstairs with Cox. The 17-year-old told investigators that while upstairs Cox "started to get sexual with him," making him uncomfortable. The youth said in the report that he and his brother strangled Cox in his Volkswagen Beetle after Cox drove the boys home. Read more


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