Sunday, January 18, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - January 18, 2009

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New York Times
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-Openly Gay Episcopal Bishop to Deliver Invocation at Lincoln Memorial
By Laurie Goodstein
President-elect Barack Obama has asked Bishop Gene Robinson, the openly gay Episcopal bishop who helped advise him on gay rights issues during the campaign, to deliver the invocation at a kickoff inaugural event on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, two days before the inauguration itself.

-Op-Contributor: Gay but Equal?
Philadelphia: AS the country prepares to enter the Obama era, anxiety over the legal status and rights of gays and lesbians is growing. Barack Obama's invitation to the Rev. Rick Warren, an evangelical pastor who opposes same-sex marriage, to give the invocation at his inauguration comes just as the hit movie "Milk" reminds us of the gay rights activism of the 1970s. Supporters of gay rights wonder if the California Supreme Court might soon confirm the legitimacy of Proposition 8, passed by state voters in November, which declares same-sex marriage illegal - leaving them no alternative but to take to the streets.

-Rick Warren Chooses Silence
By Laurie Goodstein
The Rev. Rick Warren, the megachurch pastor who became a lightning rod for controversy when he was anointed by President-elect Barack Obama to give the premier prayer at the inauguration, has decided to let his prayer speak for him.

Washington Post
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-Obama's Path to Faith Was Eclectic
President-Elect Will Reach Out to Diverse Set of Religious Leaders for Advice
By Eli Saslow
The presidential inauguration ceremony on Tuesday will begin and end with prayers from two men whom Barack Obama considers role models, advisers and dear friends. One, Joseph Lowery, is an 87-year-old black liberal Methodist from the Deep South who spent his career fighting for civil rights. The other, Rick Warren,9 is a 54-year-old white conservative evangelical from Southern California who fights same-sex unions.

-Transition Signals A Centrist Approach In Obama White House
Weeks Since Election Saw Minimal 'Drama'
By Anne E. Kornblut
If history is any guide, the 77-day transition period between the election and Tuesday's inauguration of Barack Obama as the nation's 44th president provides an early road map to what the Obama presidency will look like, in both style and substance.

Coalition Agrees on Social Issues
A coalition of moderate evangelical Christians and progressives said this week that they have come to an agreement on several social issues that have traditionally divided them.

Truth Wins Out - TWO
by Wayne Besen

-Tonight - Sunday!
Truth Wins Out's Founding Executive Director, Wayne Besen, will be on the O'Reilly Factor this evening debating anti-gay Bishop Harry Jackson. The show will discuss Revs. Gene Robinson and Rick Warren, who will both offer prayers at Obama's inauguration. Air time for the FOX inauguration special
is 5:30 PM.

-God TV To Broadcast Focus On The Family's 'Ex-Gay' Conference To Millions Deal With Focus on the Family During GOD TV's Creepy 'End Times' Month Truth Wins Out (TWO) today expressed its dismay over a deal between GOD TV and Focus on the Family to air the group's "ex-gay" Love Won Out conference. Focus on the Family claims they will now reach millions of people with their anti-gay propaganda and distorted science. The agreement comes at a time when GOD TV is airing a solid month of spooky End-Times programming.

-Disgraceful Show Elevates Fringe Anti-Gay Activists To 'Expert' Status, Says TWO
Truth Wins Out (TWO) harshly condemned the Dr. Phil Show today, claiming that it exploited Toni, the mother of a transgender child, and placed her in a psychologically abusive situation - which nearly drove her to tears. The episode, "Little Boy Lost," also falsely portrayed notorious anti-gay activists, Glenn Stanton and Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, as "experts" on gender and homosexuality, says TWO.
Dr. Phil damaged his reputation by choosing sensationalism over professionalism and he ought to be ashamed. Instead of exploring this issue in-depth, Dr. Phil sunk to new depths. He exploited a loving mother by ambushing her with disreputable anti-gay activists well known for theories far outside mainstream psychology.

-One RNC Nominee, Kenneth Blackwell, Compares Gay People to 'Arsonists' and Claims They Can 'Change'
Truth Wins Out (TWO) expressed unease today over the slate of extreme candidates running for chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC). The organization is particularly concerned that former Ohio Secretary of State, Kenneth Blackwell, is under consideration for the job. Blackwell has built his career on bashing gay and lesbian Ohioans and if chosen would likely bring his anti-gay agenda to the national stage, says TWO.

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-Vatican office: US seminaries doing good job stopping 'homosexual behavior' in the schools
A Vatican evaluation of U.S. Roman Catholic seminaries in response to the clergy sex abuse scandal concluded that administrators have largely been effective in rooting out "homosexual behavior" in the schools, although the agency said it persists.,0,3716440.story

South Florida Blade
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-Sharpton decries churches pushing Prop. 8
Atlanta alliance forms to counter anti-gay religious rhetoric
From the pulpit of Tabernacle Baptist Church on Sunday, Rev. Al Sharpton called out the Mormon Church and other conservative faiths for mobilizing to support Proposition 8 to ban gay marriage in California while refusing to be as involved in any other social concerns.

-Religious group attempts to halt leather 'play party'
Americans for Truth urges members to bombard DC's Doubletree
A religious group that believes homosexuality is "evil" is trying to keep a leather S&M party from happening this weekend at Doubletree Hotel near Washington in Arlington, Va.

-Boy George sentenced to 15 months
Guilty of 'gratuitous violence'
Singer Boy George was sentenced to 15 months in jail on Friday after being convicted of falsely imprisoning a male escort by handcuffing him to a wall in a London apartment. British Judge David Radford said the 47-year-old former Culture Club frontman, whose real name is George O'Dowd, was guilty of "gratuitous violence."

-DNC, gay staffer settle lawsuit
Hitchcock 'had hoped for more'
Washington Blade staff reports
The Democratic National Committee and its former gay outreach director have reached a settlement in a bitter lawsuit, ending all legal proceedings between them, according to a joint statement released early Friday morning.

-Gay Republicans in debt
GLBT Log Cabin Republicans start 2009 in the red
The gay Log Cabin Republicans are broke and their party is seriously broken. The group's $100,000 debt comes at a time when the GOP is indebted more than ever to extremists. Instead of learning from Election Day, the party is pandering to those who believe in the "End of Days," which will only expedite the party's political apocalypse.

-'Out of Annapolis'
By Rebecca Armendariz
'Out of Annapolis,' a documentary film featuring 35 gay alumni of the U.S. Naval Academy, has almost been completed. The filmmakers, an organization called USNA Out, are hoping to get it shown at festivals come summer 2009. A preliminary trailer has been released:

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-Riding for equality
By Allison Steinberg
What do you get when you unload a bus of LGBT folks onto the most homophobic college campuses around the country? That's exactly what you'll find out when you catch Equality U, a documentary airing this weekend as the seventh season premiere of Real Momentum, Logo's documentary series.

-Gay in the Army? You Betcha
Yesterday, Fox News reported that the Obama administration is going to repeal Don't Ask Don't Tell. In a direct and open move, incoming press secretary Gibbs gave a video response to a question posed on where he assured Americans that DADT was on the way out.

-Louisiana may reopen gay adoption ruling
The state of Louisiana has asked a federal judge to reconsider a ruling that both names of a gay couple must appear on the birth certificate of their adopted son.

-California bar associations join call to invalidate Prop 8
Forty bar associations and legal groups across the country - including the San Francisco and Los Angeles County Bar Associations - have called on the California Supreme Court to invalidate Proposition 8, the voter approved measure that bans same-sex marriage in the state.

-Gays of color at highest risk in schools
A study of LGBT students in the nation's schools has found that students of color are the most vulnerable.

-54 federal bench vacancies await Obama decision
By Jennifer Vanasco
When Barrack Obama is sworn in on Tuesday one of his first tasks will be filling 54 vacancies in federal courts.

-Corvino: Opponents on our butts
By John Corvino
Why are our opponents so obsessed with butt sex? I've personally pondered this question more times than is probably healthy. It occurred to me a few weeks ago when a poster on a conservative blog complained that gays "expect us to approve of butt sex and call it marriage."

-Sculpture shows priests raising rainbow flag
(Brussels) Is it a joke? A very expensive hoax? A sly, shockingly satirical look at the 27 nations that make up the European Union?

The Advocate
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-Map of Pro-Prop. 8 Donors Causes Controversy
An interactive map that allows one to locate where people who contributed money to pass Proposition 8 live and work is causing a stir. One of Andrew Sullivan's gay Atlantic readers who was raised Mormon wrote that finding out one of his aunts in California donated to the cause was like "a gut punch." "And that is surely one useful element of the map," Sullivan writes in response. "It helps one see whom to engage. And I don't get the fear. If Prop. 8 supporters truly feel that barring equality for gay couples is vital for saving civilization, shouldn't they be proud of their financial support? Why don't they actually have posters advertising their support for discriminating against gay people -- as a matter of pride?" (

-Obama Site Posts Video of LGBT Meeting
The Obama transition website posted a four-minute video Wednesday of a meeting that took place December 10 between LGBT leaders and members of the transition team in Washington D.C.

-Rev. V. Gene Robinson's Big Moment's James Hatori sits down on camera with Rev. V Gene Robinson on the eve on his pre-inauguration invocation for Presdient-elect Barack Obama.
By Ross von Metzke

-Same Fight, Different Approach
Prop. 8 opponents Gloria Allred and Jerry Brown don't quite see eye to eye on the next step in the fight for marriage equality.
By Julie Bolcer

National Gay News,com_frontpage/Itemid,1/
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- John Berry to be Highest-Ranking Openly Gay Appointee
President-elect Barack Obama's nominee for Director of the Office of Personnel Management, John Berry, will be the highest-ranking openly gay official in US history upon confirmation. Berry will head oversee more than 5,000 employees and a $1.5 billion annual budget, reported the Bay Area Reporter.

-Lesbian and Gay Band Association Chooses
Inspiring Music for Inaugural Parade
The Lesbian and Gay Band Association (LGBA), a musical organization comprising marching and concert bands from across the United States and around the world, is proud to announce the five musical selections that it will perform during the parade for President-elect Barack Obama's inauguration on January 20, 2009. LGBA is the first lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender group in history to be invited to march in a Presidential Inaugural Parade.

- Maine gay marriage law proposed
Hancock County senator to sponsor same-sex marriage bill
By Judy Harrison
A state senator from Hancock County is sponsoring a bill to allow same-sex couples to marry in Maine.

-Shock at Senegal gay jail terms
The jailing in Senegal of nine gay men for eight years over "indecent conduct and unnatural acts" has been condemned by an international gay rights group. Homosexual acts are illegal in Senegal but the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) told the BBC it was "shocked by the ruling".

Pink News - UK
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-Australian HIV-positive man jailed for deliberately infecting partners
An HIV-positive grandfather from Melbourne who preyed on "vulnerable" gay men when he tried to infect them with the virus has been sentenced to nearly two decades years in jail.

-Police investigating homophobic MP Iris Robinson seek advice about prosecution
By Tony Grew
The Public Prosecution Service for Northern Ireland has confirmed that it has received a request for prosecutorial advice from police investigating whether a local MP's homophobic statements broke the law.

-Ad standards body to rule on "no God" campaign next week
By Tony Grew
The Advertising Standards Authority will decide next week whether to investigate complaints that a series of adverts on public transport which claim there is no God have breached the code of conduct.

-Obama urged to consider gay rights when appointing federal judges
By Tony Grew
A legal organisation that fights for the civil rights of lesbians and gay men has urged the President-elect of the United States and the Senate to appoint judges who will treat the LGBT community fairly.

-Inquest rules on gay teen goaded to suicide by baying Derby mob
By Felicity Baker
A gay student jumped to his death after being jeered at by members of the public, an inquest has heard. Shaun Dykes, 17, died instantly after throwing himself off the top ofWestfield Shopping Centre car park in Derby on September 27th last year.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-Academics Debate Whether New Media Helps, Hurts GLBT Culture
Kilian Melloy | EDGE Contributor | EDGE Boston
Academics are divided on the question of whether or not so-called "New Media" like Reality TV and the Internet are a help or a hindrance when it comes to full social and legal equality for America's GLBT citizens.
Part of the divergence in opinion are differing views of what constitutes gay culture, versus that of the "hetero-normative." A Jan. 14 article at Campus Report details that two conflicting points of view were aired on the subject at the recent annual convention of the Modern Language Association. Kent State University Ph.D. candidate Robin Bellinson offered the view that while so-called "Reality TV" might be fostering acceptance in America of GLBT people, that might come at the expense of the GLBT community losing its unique cultural characteristics, rather than acting to alter "the cultural and economic landscape of the reality it purports to represent," in Bellinson's words. Read more

-Bad Economy May Fuel Hate Groups, Experts Warn
Carrie Johnson | Washington Post Staff Writer | Washington Post
For 20 years, Bart McIntyre has tracked white supremacist movements, even spending two years undercover in Alabama to penetrate a violent young band of criminals who called themselves the Confederate Hammerskins.
Away from his wife and young daughter, McIntyre took the alias "Mark," attended Ku Klux Klan rallies and educated himself in racist propaganda. He and a law enforcement partner ultimately helped build criminal cases that sent more than 10 men to prison for their involvement in the murder and vicious beatings of black men in the Birmingham area in the early 1990s.
Now, as McIntyre prepares to retire from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, he and other analysts are warning that the threat from hate groups and splinter organizations connected to the Klan should not be underestimated, especially at a time of economic unrest.
"In society, you have a very small number of people who are going to push the envelope and take it to the next step," said McIntyre, the resident ATF agent in charge in Roanoke. Read more

-OH: Six Gays and Lesbians Passed Over for Council
Eric Resnick | Gay People's Chronicle
Columbus-City Council passed over qualified gay and lesbian applicants to fill vacancies this week, for the second time in two years. The body's January 13 appointments may raise the ire of the LGBT community, as it did two years ago. Sixty-five people applied for two seats that became vacant when Maryellen O'Shaughnessy was elected Franklin County Clerk of Courts and Kevin Boyce was appointed state treasurer. Among the applicants were six gays and lesbians: Marc Conte, Jeff Knoll, Shawn Dingus, Terry J. Brown, Karla Rothan and Steve Farrell. The list was narrowed to 16 finalists, including Conte, Dingus, Rothan and Farrell. Conte is the research director for the Capital Crossroads Special Improvement District. Dingus is an attorney who ran for Franklin County Common Pleas Court last year. Rothan is the director of Stonewall Columbus. Farrell is a lobbyist for the United Way and Columbus City Schools. He also sought appointment to a vacant council seat in 2007 and was passed over.
This outraged the LGBT community and, later that year, many LGBT Democrats voted for gay Republican Bill Brownson in protest. Lesbian Democratic Party activist Lynn Greer recorded an automated phone "robo-call," asking people to support Brownson. Read more

-Justices Won't Expand Ohio Marriage Ban Amendment
Eric Resnick | Gay People's Chronicle
Columbus-After ruling two years ago that the state's constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages applies only to those and civil unions, the Ohio Supreme Court last week turned away an attempt to use the measure to void a child custody agreement. The court declined to hear an appeal of a lower court decision upholding the agreement, between former partners Denise Marie Fairchild and Therese Marie Fairchild, now Therese Marie Leach. The women split up in 2001 after nine years together, and five years after Denise Fairchild gave birth to a son, now 13, by artificial insemination from an anonymous donor. Six months before they broke up, the couple signed a joint parenting plan for their child, whom they were raising together. Read more

-TX: Equality Texas Fears Anti-Gay Backlash
Tammye Nash | Senior Editor | Dallas Voice
The Texas Legislature opened its 81st session this week with a moderate Republican at the helm as speaker of the House, but with the Senate in an uproar as Republicans there try to circumvent filibuster rules. Randall Terrell, political director for the LGBT advocacy organization Equality Texas, said Wednesday, Jan. 14, that new leadership in the House could be advantageous for LGBT people in the Lone Star State. But it could also bring up new challenges, as well. "I am a little more hopeful now that [San Antonio Republican Rep. Joe]
Straus is peaker of the House, but that cuts both ways," Terrell said. The speaker of the House controls the agenda there, determining which bills can come to the floor for a vote. Straus is not expected to push the kind of socially conservative agenda that former Speaker Tom Craddick backed. But Craddick still has supporters in the House, and they are likely to test the new speaker on those issues with anti-gay amendments to other bills, Terrell said. Read more

-TX: Commissioners Overturn Ban on Condoms
John Wright | News Editor | Dallas Voice
In June 1995, three Republican Dallas County commissioners drafted a letter to 43 area doctors urging them to support the county's recently enacted ban on the distribution of free condoms in high-risk neighborhoods by public health workers to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS. The letter, signed by Commissioners Kenneth Mayfield, Mike Cantrell and Jim Jackson, called homosexuality unacceptable and compared it to drug abuse and prostitution.
"We don't want anyone, especially anyone in authority, telling our children or future grandchildren that it's an approved or acceptable lifestyle to be a homosexual, a prostitute or a drug user," the letter stated. "And, we don't intend to be the vehicle through which others are given this message." Fourteen years later, Mayfield and Cantrell remain on the Commissioners Court, and their position on the condom ban hasn't changed.
But this time, they found themselves in the minority, as the five-member court voted 3-2 Tuesday, Jan. 13, to overturn the ban. Read more

-Honduran Transgender Community Terrified After Third Murder On Top Magazine
The violent murder of a prominent transgender rights activist in Honduras has left the transgender community stunned and terrified. Cynthia Nicole, a prominent transgender rights activist, was fatally wounded by three shots in the chest and one in the head in a violent drive-by shooting in the district of Barrio Guaserique in Comayaguela during the early hours of January 9. Her death comes on the heels of two additional killings against transgender sex workers in the Central American country. Yasmin was attacked and killed on November 20, and Noelia was stabbed to death on December 17. Human Rights Watch, a group dedicated to defending the rights of racial, economic and sexual minorities around the world, is calling on Honduran anchorites to fully investigate these murders. Read more

Forwarded from Gays Without Borders
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-The Truth About Rick Warren in Africa
by Max Blumenthal
Team Obama likes to cite Warren's work on AIDS in Africa to combat criticism about the controversial pastor. But how does burning condoms in the name of Jesus save lives?
Once hailed by Time magazine as "America's Pastor," California mega-church leader and bestselling author of The Purpose Driven Life Rick Warren now finds himself on the defensive. President-elect Barack Obama's selection of Warren to deliver the inaugural prayer has generated intense scrutiny of the pastor's beliefs on social issues, from his vocal support for Prop 8, a ballot initiative banning same-sex marriage in California, to his comparison of homosexuality to pedophilia, incest and bestiality. Many of Obama's supporters have demanded that he withdraw the invitation.

-Prince Harry not homophobic
Third in line to the throne kisses soldier mate
Commenting on the race row over Prince Harry's "Paki" comments during his army video diary, and the lack of a similar furore over his use of the word "queer", gay human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell of OutRage! said: "I cannot see anything offensive about the context and manner in which Harry used the word queer.
"It wasn't said with hate, aggression or malice. "Later in his video diary the prince mouths to another soldier 'I love you' before kissing him on the cheek and licking his face. Kissing another bloke in front of his mates and putting it on film doesn't seem very homophobic to me. On the contrary, Harry comes across as quite gay-friendly. "We should kick up a fuss about real homophobia, not imagined prejudice. For details of Harrys' queer escapades, see this News of the World report:

-A hidden camera catches an Iranian cleric committing adultery, and the video rockets around the blogosphere, where a new generation can finally skirt state censorship. A video scandal has hit the Iranian Internet scene. Like many online scandals in the West, it involves a model. Not Paris Hilton, but a supposed model of virtue: a cleric. In the video - for weeks voted the top story on (an Iranian version of - a robed cleric is caught on a hidden camera in a private room. He walks to the door to let a chador-clad woman enter. "Nobody saw you come in, did they?" he asks her lightheartedly. As she removes her chador, he continues in the same tone: "Want to do some Nasnas?" Iranians know Nasnas as a mythological monster. What the cleric means by "do some Nasnas" is clarified by what happens next in the clip. Americans have a similar expression: the beast with two backs.

-TEHRAN, Iran (CAP) - President Bush today signed off on a plan to send analysts from the Department of Homeland Security to Iran for several weeks to assist in the implementation of a color-coded advisory system. While the United States uses such a system to alert its citizens to potential terrorist threats, the Iranians will be utilizing the technology for a different purpose. "As you can see, right now it is on Green, or Low. And you can see right underneath it says No gays present. It is just as President Ahmadinejad said," explained Iranian Cultural Affairs Secretary Ahmed Dabashi as he pointed to a large, color-coded graph behind him. "If the Great Satan Bush were to have his soldiers penetrate a gay man over our borders, we would know, and the level would rise to Blue/Guarded, or One gay detected," said Dabashi. "We would then take appropriate action. Gas a village, that sort of thing."

-Gays Fuck God: God Hates Fags church granted permission to protest at Obama inauguration
Westboro Baptist Church picket a funeral
A small religious community that has become world-famous for protesting at the funerals of American soldiers killed in action will have a presence at the inauguration ceremonies in Washington DC later this month. Westboro Baptist Church is led by Rev Fred Phelps. The church members, who are mostly his relations, regularly picket funerals claiming the deaths are God's punishment for the country's support of homosexuals. They have caused so much distress picketing funerals that it has been restricted from doing so in 22 states.
The group is notorious for also picketing the funerals of homosexual victims of murder.

-Gay Rights in Russia: European Parliament says Human Rights Integral to EU-Russia Relations
A resolution from the Parliament calls for EU institutions to give practical support.

-Dead Palestinian kids : images the IDF doesn't want you to see

-A photo essay on Indonesia's waria (male-to-female transgenders) on the BBC World website:

-An Open Letter to President Barack Obama
On the occasion of his inauguration, 20 January 2009
From Peter Tatchell, British LGBTI human rights campaigner
Dear President Barack Obama,
Congratulations on the occasion of your inauguration. On this special day, the hopes of billions of people across our precious planet are vested in your presidency. They look to you to show practical and moral leadership in resolving the great challenges that face humanity.

-The Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Verhagen (Christian Democratic Party) criticized recent opinions ventilated by the Pope ("Mankind should be protected against self destruction caused by homosexuality"). He requested the papal nuntius Bacque to come to the Ministry of FA and told him that these opinions do not contribute to a respectful discussion about homosexuality. Minister Verhagen also objected to the Holy See's negative approach towards the statement on sexual orientation and gender identity, presented last December by 66 countries at the General Assembly of the UN.

Forwarded from Euro-Queer
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-MEPs to vote on proposal that 'would guarantee gay marriage and abortion rights across EU'

-Maltese MEPs oppose move promoting abortion and same-sex marriages
The five Maltese MEPs declared their opposition to same-sex marriages and abortion in the European Parliament, refusing to support a non-legally-binding resolution on harmonising fundamental human rights laws in Europe.

-Honduras: Investigate Murder of Transgender Activist
Authorities Should Act Against Increasing Violence
(New York, January 12, 2009) - the Honduran authorities should fully investigate the murder of Cynthia Nicole, a leading Honduras transgender rights defender, and other attacks on the transgender community, Human Rights Watch said today. Nicole's killing is the latest in a series of violent attacks against transgender people in Honduras.

-World Report 2009: Obama Should Emphasize Human Rights
Stop Abusive States From Playing System to Avert Criticism
(Washington, DC, January 14, 2009) - The incoming Obama administration will need to put human rights at the heart of foreign, domestic, and security policy if it is to undo the enormous damage of the Bush years, Human Rights Watch said today in issuing its World Report 2009.

-"European Parliament urges Member States to protect LGBT people against violence, hatred and grant mutual recognition for same-sex couples." On 14 January the European Parliament adopted a report on the "Situation of fundamental rights in the European Union 2004-2008", drafted by Italian MEP Giusto Catania.
The report asks Member States and the European Institutions to adopt recommendations made by the Fundamental Rights Agency on homophobia as a matter of urgency. In addition, the Parliament called on the European Commission to propose legislation which would introduce criminal offences for homophobic behaviour. "This report endorses the rights of every European citizen", said Michael Cashman, President of the LGBT Intergroup. "I particularly welcome the call for mutual recognition of same-sex partnerships and marriages by EU member states alongside the call for the Commission propose legislation which guarantees the right of free movement for same-sex couples."

Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
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-Military bows to ACLU demand against preaching
Americans entering the military often receive Bibles, courtesy of the Gideons International. But the Gideons have been told that while they can leave complimentary Bibles at most military induction stations, they cannot stay there to proselytize or preach to the recruits.

-One year shy of the 70th anniversary of African-American contralto Marian Anderson's performance at the Lincoln Memorial, out gay Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson will deliver an invocation at a January 18 pre-inaugural celebration there.

-Obama White House taps 3 more LGBT appointees

-Book still suspended from Crook County classrooms
But the disputed work will be in the library
PRINEVILLE - The award-winning book that was suspended from a Crook County High School classroom last month after a parent complained it was offensive, will remain out of the classroom until the school district can revamp its policies. About 60 people turned out Monday night to the Crook County School Board meeting and about 15 testified about the book. The board then voted 4-1 to continue the temporary suspension, while making the book available to students in the library. [...] A New York Times best-seller and a National Book Award winner, the book was written by Sherman Alexie and is about a boy growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation who decides to attend an all-white school. The protagonist in Alexie's book discusses masturbation.

-Today, IGLYO and ILGA launch the LGBT Youth World List - the first international network of its kind.
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex and queer young people from all over the world can sign up to send and receive messages with other activists. Members will be encouraged to share their experiences, ideas and expertise, and to work together to solve problems and run projects. The working languages of the list are English, Spanish and French.

-Lawmaker wants to put sex back into sex education
A South Florida senator wants Florida public schools to ditch the wait-until-marriage message that's long been the basis of many sex-education classes. Instead, state Sen. Ted Deutch, D- Delray Beach, has filed legislation that would require schools to teach kids about condoms and other contraceptive methods starting in the sixth grade. Meanwhile, two other lawmakers have introduced bills meant to discourage teachers from touting the benefits of sex within a monogamous, heterosexual marriage.,0,808404.story

-Teen Charged With Sending Nude Pics of Herself
Girl Faces Felony Charges After Allegedly Sending Photos of Herself to Classmates

-Teens send nude pics to one other, face kiddie porn charges
There are a number of reasons to think twice (or three times, or four times, or fifty times) before sending a nude photo of yourself to someone electronically. But, if you're under the age of 18, there's at least one big, glaring, serious reason: you and the recipient could be charged with trafficking child pornography. If you think this sounds crazy, it is exactly what happened in Greensburg, Pennsylvania after two teenage girls send nude photos to some teenage boys.

-Ecuador: Action Alert - Transgender Activists Dismissed from their Jobs

-Never Ask a Gay Man for Directions
Because studies show homosexual males navigate like women

-Today, the Stonewall Democrats congratulated Laura Calvo upon her election as Treasurer of the Democratic Party of Oregon. Calvo, a seasoned Democratic operative, becomes the first openly-transgender officer of a state Democratic party.

-Just how many gay marriage skeletons does Barack Obama have hiding in the closet? Eighteen months after we first learned the president- elect had given conflicting answers about the Defense of Marriage Act in candidate questionnaires back in 2003 and 2004, a new, even bigger bombshell has come to light. Just one week before Obama takes the oath of office, a gay newspaper in Chicago is reporting that the president-elect vowed to support marriage equality for same-sex couples when he was a candidate for the Illinois state Senate way back in 1996.

-A high-profile task force concluded that the sexual solicitation of children online is not a significant problem.

-Campus Pride Summer Leadership Camp
Finally the camp you have been waiting for! Campus Pride organizes the only Summer Leadership Camp for LGBT and Ally college students -- YOU. The five-day camp experience works to develop stronger undergraduate student leaders and safer, more LGBT-friendly colleges and universities.
Participants have the opportunity to learn valuable campus organizing skills, coalition building and strategies for creating change at colleges and universities.

-Sexploration: Toeing the legal line with fetishes
By Brian Alexander
Is it legal to hire a dominatrix as long as you don't actually have sex?
Q: Paying for sex is illegal in most of America, but what about paying for fetish services? Can you legally hire a dominatrix or escort for any of the countless things besides intercourse? Where is the line drawn?

-Playboy's list of the most important people in sex from the past 55 years-and, no, Hef isn't No. 1-reminds the author why we still need America's smartest smut. And not just for the articles.
This month, on the occasion of its 55th anniversary, Playboy published a list of the 55 most important people in sex from the past 55 years. Number three on the list is the magazine's founder, Hugh Hefner. Number eight is Timothy Berners-Lee, who invented the World Wide Web. Both men irrevocably changed the modern experience of sex, one intentionally and meticulously, the other inadvertently and chaotically. The half-century between the two marks a profound cultural shift that has for all intents and purposes doomed Hefner's magazine-even as Playboy, or an updated version of it, has become more necessary than ever.

-The Supreme Court is slated to give a final review
Friday in a case that probes the legal boundaries between stalking and sexual harassment.
Dawn V. Martin v. Howard University, et al., has serious implications for workplace safety nationwide, according to legal advocates, and spotlights the lack of any federal protections for victims of stalking who face retaliation from their employers when they complain about it.

-Get over it: Talk to kids about sex

-"The US Drug Enforcement Administration has rejected the bid of a researcher at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst who wants to create the second laboratory in the nation authorized to grow marijuana for medical research."

-Voting for the freedom to marry does not hurt politicians, new study confirms

-Since the Obama administration announced that CNN's Sanjay Gupta, one of People magazine's "sexiest men alive [1]" in 2003, might be the next surgeon general, reactions have ranged from indifferent to outraged. Although Gupta is a neurosurgeon and has been in the public eye for years - he started his "House Call" show on CNN in 2004 - many have been scrambling to figure out what this man stands for. Two separate controversies have already risen since Gupta's name has publicly been floated as the next surgeon general. First, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman lambasted [2] Gupta's critique of Michael Moore's 2007 film Sicko, saying that Gupta's accusation that Moore "fudged the facts" was, well, just plain wrong. Then Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) wrote a letter [3] to his fellow Democrats urging them to oppose Gupta as surgeon general. Conyers claimed that Gupta would face a "credibility problem," given his lack of experience in the National Health Service Corp and that "it is not in the best interests of the nation to have someone ... who lacks the requisite experience needed to oversee the federal agency that provides crucial health care assistance to some of the poorest and most underserved communities in America."

-Fired For Being Gay In Nashville
It's not uncommon that employees get fired for being gay. In this case however, the owner of a Nashville area hotel has made his reasons for terminating David Hill public. Of course, as you know already, gays and lesbians are not a protected class, and therefore, the law is not on our side.

-Study: Religious Teens More Likely to Abstain from Sex,2933,475306,00.html

-Premarital Abstinence Pledges Ineffective, Study Finds
Teenagers Who Make Such Promises Are Just as Likely to Have Sex, and Less Likely to Use Protection, the Data Indicate

-Elena Kagan, Obama's SG, on pornography
Earlier this week President-Elect Obama announced he would nominate Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan to be Solicitor General. There is much to like about the choice. Kagan is an accomplished scholar and much-lauded dean who has often been discussed as a potential Supreme Court nominee. She is also a liberal, a feminist and a former clerk for Justice Thurgood Marshall, and would be the first female appointed to the position often referred to as "the tenth Justice" and "America's lawyer." (For non-lawyers, the SG supervises government involvement in appellate litigation and represents the government in the Supreme Court.)

-In what may be a legit need, or just a way to yank Congress' chain, Hustler Magazine publisher Larry Flynt has asked the government for a $5 billion dollar bailout package for the adult entertainment industry since magazine and DVD sales are down.

-Transition white paper on GLBT and Reproductive Rights Issues
Both links below are to white papers written for the "Change for America" book prepared by the Center for American Progress (John Podesta's think tank, which is now the de facto idea factory for the transition). While they are not going to appear in the published edition of the book, they provide some helpful insight into how Obama's team will view these issues.

-College students say suggestive dancing, too many male guests are signs of danger
College students believe that suggestive dancing and too many male guests are more accurate signs of a potentially dangerous party than the amount of alcohol consumed, a new study from Ball State University indicates. A survey of about 300 students from Midwestern colleges and universities found male and female college students identified different signals that a particular party may be potentially dangerous, but drinking was not one of them.,1898,7273-962-60778,00.html

-Hook-up site not liable for connecting man with minor
The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected a suit by a man who blamed hook-up site for connecting him with a minor (PDF), thereby leading to his arrest for unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

-Nude dancing and the First Amendment: A history
Fraser Sherman
During a recent meeting between City Manager Greg Kisela and several Destin pastors, the question came up of how a strip club can claim protection under the First Amendment. "Many people do not understand why the removal of clothes by a dancer is a form of protected expression," legal writer David Hudson says on the Web site, "but in fact the First Amendment protects many forms of controversial expression." Hudson said courts have extended freedom of speech principles to nude dancing because the First Amendment:

-British Bill To Ban 'Extreme' Porn Infuriates Critics

From Transgender Equality
Contact for the full article

-Field Organizer - Transgender Equality
Company Name: Equality Maryland
Job Location: Silver Spring, MD
Equality Maryland, the state's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, is hiring a full-time contractual (for a six month period) Field Organizer to help expand the infrastructure to educate the public, LGBTA organizations, community organizations, opinion leaders and others about transgender people in Maryland the lack of legal protections and how this effects their lives. More information about Equality Maryland is available at

-A Truly Stupid Example of Transphobia
Gainesville, Florida, has an ordinance allowing transgender persons to select whichever bathroom they find most appropriate. The haters and the fools have come up with a campaign to overturn this ordinance and to require transgendered persons to. well, I'm not sure exactly. This is the television ad they are running:


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