Saturday, January 31, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - January 31, 2009

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New York Times
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-After Departure, No Leader for U.S. AIDS Program
The abrupt departure of the State Department's global AIDS coordinator has led to debate over who should run what may be President Bush's most important achievement: his commitment of billions of dollars to fighting AIDS overseas.

Washington Post
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-Finding Your Niche, Anywhere in the World
You want to travel, but you want to do it in a way that reflects you and your needs. To help, we have updated our library of niche resources covering 11 popular travel categories, such as dietary (vegan tours to Italy, anyone? Anyone?) and pet-friendly (including info on pet-friendly RV parks). Here are umbrella organizations, travel agents, Web sites and phone numbers to help you plan the Next Great Trip.

-With Their Assistance, You Can Get There From Here
You lust for a supreme, away-from-it-all experience, exploring cool Croatia, for example, or enjoying a culinary tour of Italy, relaxing on a beach in the South Pacific or backpacking in Alaska. But you don't have the time, energy, expertise or inclination to coordinate all the pieces. Who ya gonna call?

Fallen Pastor Makes Peace With Sex Scandal
Fallen evangelical pastor Ted Haggard says he doesn't consider himself gay, but rather "a heterosexual with issues."

-Progressive Faith Groups Now Trying to Shift Debate
Activists Optimistic That Obama Will Back Causes
By Jacqueline L. Salmon and Michelle Boorstein
With a president they view as more sympathetic to their causes, progressive religious activists are pushing the new Obama administration for aggressive action -- on poverty, the environment and social justice issues -- that would mark a significant shift in the faith agenda that dominated the Bush years.

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-Vatican orders review of women's religious communities in US amid steady membership decline
The Vatican has begun a first-ever comprehensive study of women's religious orders in the United States, four decades into a steep decline in the number of Roman Catholic sisters and nuns in the country.,0,275087.story

Steve Rothaus
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-National gay chamber leaders meet at White House
Members of the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce met with other business leaders this week at the White House to talk about the president's economic stimulus package.

South Florida Blade
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-South Florida musicians perform in inaugural parade
Residents marched past Obama, protestors as part of Lesbian and Gay Band Association
Jan. 20, 2009 was a day for the history books. Not only were records broken as millions crammed on the National Mall to witness the inauguration of our first African-American president, the inaugural parade featured the first LGBT marching unit. Five South Florida musicians were there to write that new chapter.

-Hate crimes bill introduced in Ga. House
Legislation includes sexual orientation, gender identity
By MATT SCHAFER, Southern Voice
A gay and transgender-inclusive hate crime bill has been introduced in the Georgia House of Representatives, while a bill requiring HIV testing of prisoners was introduced in the state Senate. Rep. Pedro "Pete" Marin (D-Duluth) had put forth the hate crimes bill, H.B. 111. It would offer sentence enhancement for hate crimes motivated by the victim's "race, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or national origin."

-Effort to repeal Va. marriage amendment dies
Decision to table the measure approved 7-1
A legislative attempt to repeal the constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions in Virginia was defeated Monday when lawmakers voted to kill the measure.

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-DuBois appointment say about Obama and gays?
By Jennifer Vanasco
Josh DuBois might be called a New Evangelical. He is a Pentecostal pastor who believes Jesus is his personal savior. But he also seems to put more weight on the social gospel (that is, that Christians should take care of the poor and the disenfranchised) than on the old Evangelical hammers of gays and abortion. And now the 26-year-old has a new position: head of the new President's Council for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

-Canadian lesbian couple says doctor refused to treat them
By The Canadian Press
(Winnipeg, Manitoba) A Manitoba lesbian couple rejected by a family doctor from Egypt for religious reasons says Canada must better educate foreign-trained physicians.

-Please muzzle Ted Haggard
By James Withers
Shut-up! Shut-up! Shut-up! God, shut your toothy trap! How long is this Ted Haggard speaking tour going to go on? I'm an ardent fan of the First Amendment, but when it comes to Haggard I want to add a provision that keeps him from the public square for 25 years.

The Advocate
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-Pro-Gay Utah Bill Voted Down In Senate Committee
The first in a series of LGBT rights bills to be introduced in the Utah legislature has already died, reports the The Salt Lake Tribune. In a 4-2 vote Tuesday, the senate judiciary committee voted against sending a bill to the Senate floor that would have amended state law to allow financial dependents (beyond spouses, parents, and children) to file wrongful death suits if their main provider was killed.

HIV Leadership Forum

-Call the White House and Your Senator,
Support HIV, STD Prevention funding:
Ensure $400 million funding Remains in Economic Recovery Bill
Why: The Senate will begin debate next week on the Economic Recovery bill, which was passed by the House of Representatives this week. The Senate bill includes $400 million in funding for HIV and STD screening and prevention. (The House version is $335 million and includes TB and Viral Hepatitis as well. We will call for inclusion of those diseases in conference). We must make certain the funding remains in the bill. 56,300 new HIV infections occur annually.
One state plans to close all STD clinics due to budget cuts
More than 680 jobs have been lost in TB control programs in last three years At least 3 million Americans are chronically infected with hepatitis C 25% of the current public health care workforce is eligible to retire in 2012. The money should be sent to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC's) National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention to address the four most common infectious diseases in the U.S. Adjusted for inflation, CDC's HIV prevention budget alone has decreased by 19.3% since fiscal year 2002. Explain to the Administration and the Senators that prevention funding is critical to the health and well-being of the country.
Take Action:
Contact the White House 202-456-1414 comments line
Contact your US Senator 202-224-3121
Tell them to maintain the $400 million funding for HIV, STD, TB, and Viral Hepatitis Prevention!

Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
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-Christian Anti-Defamation Commission - Bashing - Youtube video

-Drag kings have a tougher time than queens finding their place in society - or onstage.

Pink News - UK
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-Russian thug boasts of beating up gay German MP at Moscow Pride
By Tony Grew
Police in Moscow have been forced into action after a news magazine published an interview with a man who boasted about beating up a gay German MP in the city in May 2006.

-Video: US "family values" group targets Pepsi's British gay advert
A US pressure group that "motivates and equips citizens to change the culture to reflect Biblical truth and traditional family values" has complained about a new advert from drinks manufacturer Pepsi.

-Profile: World's first lesbian Prime Minister's slow rise to power
By Atli Thor Fanndal
When it was announced earlier this week that Johanna Sigurdardottir was likely to be appointed prime minister, little did Icelanders realise that their small island would be making history.

-Court rules Spanish children cannot opt out of gay rights class
Parents in Spain who do not want their children to attend civics classes that include lessons on gay rights do not have the right to conscientiously object, a court has ruled. The Roman Catholic church is among those objecting to the new curriculum introduced in 2007 by the Socialist government of Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.

-Olympian Ian Thorpe 'draws a line' under gay innuendos
One of Australia's best-known sporting heroes has issued a statement after press speculation about the nature of his relationship with a fellow swimmer.

Forwarded from Victoria Lavin
Daily Queer News
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-Experts Hope Divorce Case Makes Couples Think Twice
John Wright | News Editor | Dallas Voice
In the wake of what is believed to be the state's first same-sex divorce filing, LGBT legal experts again advised caution for gay and lesbian couples from Texas who are considering marriage. Same-sex marriage is currently legal only in Massachusetts and Connecticut, and both states allow out-of-state couples to marry there. But both also have residency requirements for divorce, meaning couples from out of state may not be able to undo their vows. Massachusetts, for example, requires that a married couple live in the state for one year before obtaining a divorce. Courts in Rhode Island and Oklahoma have denied divorces to same-sex couples married in other states. And New York is the only state that has indicated it will recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages. Jenny Pizer, director of Lambda Legal's National Marriage Project, said it's an issue the LGBT civil rights group has dealt with as far back as 2000, when Vermont legalized civil unions for same-sex couples from out of state. Read more

-NH Gay Bill Shelved
(Concord, New Hampshire) A bill that would have mandated that partners in civil unions be added to all state insurance laws was put on hold just as House committee was about to hold a hearing on the measure. Rep. Edward Butler (D), the bill's sponsor, pulled the legislation, saying there were other measures dealing with same-sex couples that should be considered first. Among those is a proposal to change New Hampshire's year old civil union law to allow for full marriage. A hearing on that bill is scheduled for Feb. 5. Republicans have filed a bill that would start the process to amend the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage and the legislature will consider a bill that would maintain civil unions and direct the government to recognize civil unions and gay marriages performed in states and countries where they are legal as civil unions in New Hampshire. Read more

-Dallas Woman Stars as Lesbian Face of Avon in Super Bowl ad
Tammye Nash | Senior Editor | Dallas Voice
Avon and lesbian: Not two words you'd usually expect to hear in the same sentence. But that's only if you don't know Daryn DeZengotita. DeZengotita, of Dallas, is one of five Avon sales representatives chosen about two years ago to serve as the "faces of Avon" around the world in an advertising and marketing campaign. Now that commercial is going to get one of the largest television audiences of the year when it airs Sunday, Feb. 1, during the Super Bowl. "It was about two years ago that I was selected to audition for - and got a part in - some national TV commercials for Avon," DeZengotita said this week. "There are a million Avon representatives in the United States. Fifty of those were chosen to audition, and 10 were selected to be in the commercials." Read more


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