Monday, March 23, 2009

FLORIDA DIGEST - March 23, 2009

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Dolphin Democrats

-This weekend at the Pridefest, the Dolphin Democrats got 300 voters (exactly) to take the Pledge for Obama. This is the most pledges at one event in the state of Florida this weekend according to Organizing for America State Leader John Bivona. We also got 112 voters to sign the Fair Districts Florida petitions to end gerrymandering. The Dolphins would like to express our heartfelt thanks for the many members who gave freely of their time to put us at the forefront of the state. Now we need to do it again at the Pridefest of the Palm Beaches next week! Please contact Tim Ross at if you can help us next weekend from Noon to 6 pm on Saturday and Sunday. We would like to get close to 450 pledges next weekend.

-Gainesville City Commission amended its Human Rights Ordinance to include Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity - just like 8 other cities or counties have done around the state of Florida. Now the far right is trying to take those rights away -- and there's a vote on March 24 that could do just that! If they do it in Gainesville, WHERE ELSE IN FLORIDA IS NEXT? Please help us make call from the GLCC in Ft. Lauderdale monday March 23 evening this week from 5:45pm to 9pm Call JD Camp at (954) 802-2202 in advance to schedule. Time is running out and we really do need your help. A couple of hours can make a world of difference to protect the few advances made here in Florida for the GLBT community. Tuesday, March 24th --Election Day in Gainesville -- could be D-Day. We have one day left to take action. Will you help

Florida GLBT Democrats - SAVE THE DATES
July 17 thru July 19, 2009
The summer conference of the Florida GLBT Democratic Caucus will be held in fabulous Key West, Florida. We will make our first return to the city where we began the revitalization of the Caucus. Please watch the website for information.

A message from Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz
A little more than a year ago, after I found a lump in my breast while doing a routine self-exam, my doctor diagnosed me with breast cancer. After my diagnosis, it seemed like there were a million different decisions I had to make. My doctor's initial recommendation, because I found the lump so early and it was less than a half centimeter, was to simply have the cancer removed, followed by radiation. However, after sitting down with a nurse educator who asked me many, many questions about my personal and family health history, I also decided to have a blood test that would show whether I had a genetic alteration in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene. Although I have no immediate familial history with cancer I was informed that, as a woman of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, I was in a category of at-risk populations for the gene mutation. I learned that there is an 85 percent lifetime risk for a woman who doesn't have breast cancer, but tests positive for this genetic mutation. For a woman who tests positive and already has breast cancer, there is a 65 percent risk that cancer will affect the healthy breast. Because I was young and diagnosed with breast cancer, there was an indication I might carry the gene, although it was again thought unlikely. Several weeks after the successful removal of the tumor, my doctor advised me that I carry the BRCA2 genetic marker that suggests a greater susceptibility to breast and ovarian cancers. After careful consideration, and further consultation with my doctors and my husband, I decided to have a double mastectomy and have my ovaries removed, to reduce the likelihood of a recurrence of cancer. As any breast cancer patient will tell you, it is a time when you feel you have very little control. I chose to manage my breast cancer and get through the last year privately, with my family and close friends around me. I also chose to wait to tell my young children until recently. After consulting with my doctors, I knew that I could get through the surgeries and procedures and make it very unlikely that I would have a recurrence. I wanted to be able to tell my children with a clear conscience that their Mommy would be okay. This week in Washington, with a clean bill of health and cancer-free, I plan to introduce the EARLY Act, which seeks to educate young women on the risk factors for breast cancer, why certain populations are more likely to be at risk, and ways that young women can be proactive in lowering their risks. The legislation also seeks to help young women diagnosed with breast cancer deal with the issues unique to their fertility, and the social ramifications young women face. Some people might say I was lucky. While I certainly was fortunate enough to have access to good health care, I didn't find my tumor early because of luck. I found my tumor early because of knowledge and awareness. I knew that I should perform breast self-exams, and I was aware of what my body was supposed to feel like. We need to ensure that every young woman in America can rely on more than luck. Their survival depends on it.
Sincerely, Debbie

Lambda Legal in Fort Lauderdale
2009 Annual Reception honoring Tony Timiraos and featuring Janice Langbehn
Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 5:00 - 7:30 pm
Join fellow Lambda Legal supporters alonside Executive Director Kevin Cathcart for cocktails and hors d'oeuvres at the historic Bonnet House Museum & Gardens - 900 North Birch Road - Fort Lauderdale. This event has limited capacity. To ensure your admission, please reply as soon as possible to Rick Hill at 786-473-6126 or purchase tickets online. All reservations will be held at the door.

Steve Rothaus
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-Updated: Women In Network's 14th annual charity golf tournament to be April 25 - Men are welcome at this event.
Please join us for the Women In Network's 14th Annual Charity Golf Tournament to benefit the Gilda's Club of S. Florida Pace Center for Girls Broward and Palm Beach Counties Alzheimer's Family Center, Margate, FL on April 25, 2009. We will have a great day of golf at the beautiful Palm-Aire Country Club & Resort in Pompano Beach, FL ( The event will include a 4-person scramble, Buffet and awards receptions following the golf. Register now and remember to invite your friends to play. Just click on "Tell a Friend" and you can send them a link to this site automatically. Thank you for your support of the Gilda's Club of S. Florida Pace Center for Girls Broward and Palm Beach Counties Alzheimer's Family Center, Margate - April 25, 2009 -1:00 pm Palm-Aire Country Club & Resort

Miami Herald
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-De Rossi talks 'Ted,' Ellen and babies
As half of one of the most famous gay couples in the country, Portia de Rossi is still working to decipher the mixed messages American culture is sending her way. On one hand, the actress' marriage to talk-show queen Ellen DeGeneres has won enough popular acceptance that tabloids speculate about whether De Rossi will soon bear the couple's first child through in-vitro fertilization.

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-Fla. Law Interferes With Cuba Travel Regulations
A Florida law that would make it more expensive for travel agents to book trips to Cuba interferes with existing federal regulation of travel to the communist island, according to a report by the U.S. Justice Department. In the 35-page opinion issued Friday, the Justice Department said the Sellers of Travel Act also interferes "with the federal government's ability to speak for the United States with one voice in foreign affairs."


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