Monday, March 16, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - March 06, 2009

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Washington Post
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-Fenty to Release Report on D.C. AIDS Epidemic
By Darryl Fears
Mayor Adrian M. Fenty is scheduled to release an 82-page report this morning saying that 3 percent of District residents have HIV or AIDS, a total that surpasses the threshold that constitutes a severe epidemic.

-Separation Anxiety
Gay couples should be allowed to stay together in the United States. THE UNITING American Families Act would allow gay and lesbian Americans and permanent residents to sponsor their foreign-born partners for legal residency in the United States. The bill, introduced last month in the Senate by Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and in the House by Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), would add "permanent partner" and "permanent partnership" after the words "spouse" and "marriage" in relevant sections of the Immigration and Nationality Act. If passed, it would right a gross unfairness.

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-Melvin Wheatley, bishop
By Elaine Woo | Los Angeles Times
Bishop Melvin E. Wheatley, who risked censure in the United Methodist Church for appointing his denomination's first openly gay pastor in 1982, died March 1 at 93 in Mission Viejo after an illness, a church spokesman said. Bishop Wheatley was known for promoting dialogue across faiths and cultures during nearly two decades in Los Angeles as senior pastor of the Westwood United Methodist Church. In 1972, he was elected bishop and assigned to Denver as the gay rights movement was under way.,0,3068089.story

The Advocate
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- First Openly Gay Mayoral Candidate Runs in Mexico
By Julie Bolcer
Mexico received its first openly gay mayoral candidate on Friday, when the minority Social Democratic Party (PSD) selected Miguel Antonio Galán to run for the local office in Guadalajara, the second most populous city in the country.

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-Report: DC has nation's highest HIV/AIDS rate
By The Associated Press
A new report by D.C. health officials says that at least 3 percent of residents in the nation's capital are living with HIV or AIDS and every mode of transmission is on the rise.

-Guyana credits U.S. campaign with slashing AIDS rate
By The Associated Press
(Georgetown, Guyana) Guyana says a U.S.-funded AIDS prevention program has helped slash the HIV infection rate in the South American country from nearly 3 percent to about 1 percent.

-Gay marriage bills heading for showdowns in Maine, Vermont
By 365gay Newscenter Staff
Support is growing for legislation that would allow same-sex couples to marry in Maine. The bill now has more than 60 lawmakers as co-sponsors.

-Washington D.C. HIV rates equal to Uganda
By James Withers
This should shock no one, especially after the late summer 2008 report by the Black AIDS Institute. A study today will show that at least 3 percent of Washington D.C. residents have either HIV or AIDS. "Our rates are higher than West Africa," said Shannon L. Hader, director of the District's HIV/AIDS Administration, who headed the Federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's work in Zimbabwe. "They're on par with Uganda and some parts of Kenya."

Pink News - UK
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-Homophobic hate crimes 'linked to Prop 8'
A surge in anti-gay hate crimes has been linked to Proposition 8, the initiative that banned same-sex marriage in California. Homophobic incidents accounted for more than half of hate crime cases last year - 56 per cent up frpm 15 per cent in 2007.

-Study to be released on poverty among gay Americans
By Jessica Geen
An analysis of poverty among lesbian, gay and bisexual Americans is to be presented to Congress next Friday. Produced by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law, the survey has been described as the first of its kind.

-Obama to decide on gay partnership rights
By Staff Writer
US president Barack Obama is to decide whether the government must provide health insurance benefits to the same-sex partners of federal employees. The New York Times reports that he is faced with a choice between disappointing the liberal base which elected him or angering the conservatives at a time he needs their help on his domestic agenda.

-Robert Pattinson reveals struggle over gay scene
By Staff Writer,
Twilight actor Robert Pattinson has described filming a gay scene in his latest film Little Ashes. He told GQ: "And here I am, with Javier [Beltrán], who plays Lorca, doing an extremely hard-core sex scene, where I have a nervous breakdown afterward. And because we're both straight, what we were doing seemed kind of ridiculous.

-Nigerian Archbishop 'wants gay wedding witnesses to be jailed"
Archbishop of the Anglican Church of Nigeria, Peter Akinola, has said that gay marriage is "capable of engendering moral and social holocaust" and has called for those who attend gay weddings to be sentenced to a year in jail.

Daily Queer News
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-Brian-Injury GIs Could Number 360,000
Associated Press |
The number of U.S. troops who have suffered wartime brain injuries may be as high as 360,000 and could cast more attention on such injuries among civilians, Defense Department doctors said Wednesday. The estimate of the number injured - the vast majority of them suffering concussions - represents 20 percent of the roughly 1.8 million men and women who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan, where blast injuries are common from roadside bombs and other explosives, the doctors said. The estimate came in a Pentagon news conference on activities planned this month to bring attention to brain injuries. The doctors said the number could be as low as 180,000, based on estimates that between 10 percent and 20 percent of troops might have received such injuries. The previous high estimate offered publicly was 320,000 in a study released a year ago by the private Rand Corp. It was based on about 1.6 million who had done tours of duty in the wars from late 2001. Read more

-Half of Church in Conflict Over Gay Ordination.
Deny Consent to Buddhist Bishop
David Virtue | Virtue Online
On fire for Christ. The idea of being on fire for Christ will strike some people as dangerous emotionalism. 'Surely,' they say, 'we are not meant to go to extremes? You are not asking us to become hot-gospel fanatics?' Well, of course, it depends what you mean. If by 'fanaticism' you really mean 'wholeheartedness', then Christianity is a fanatical religion and every Christian should be a fanatic. But wholeheartedness is not the same as fanaticism. Fanaticism is an unreasoning and unintelligent wholeheartedness. It is the running away of the heart with the head. At the end of a statement prepared for a conference on science, philosophy and religion at Princeton University in 1940 came these words: 'Commitment without reflection is fanaticism in action; but reflection without commitment is the paralysis of all action.' What Jesus Christ desires and deserves is the reflection which leads to commitment and the commitment which is born of reflection. This is the meaning of wholeheartedness, of being aflame for God. - From "What Christ Thinks of the Church" by John R.W. Stott. No associate members. We must expect every Christian believer to be an active church member. We cannot afford to have associate members who want privileges without responsibilities. - From "Parochial Evangelism by the Laity" (London: Church Information Board) Read more

-The Gay Marriage Debate in Vermont
Rutland Herald
As the controversy grows over a proposal to allow gay marriage in Vermont, readers are again divided on the idea, the politics and the merits of the proposed legislation. Marriage, a contract between a man and women - Take it to the people ( is an excellent resource for information that you can visit for complete information on the civil/marriage issue. The Legislature is prepared to hold one public hearing and then go to the House and Senate to vote on S115, an act relating to civil marriage. Only one public hearing, and then they will vote on this issue is how our legislative body defines democracy. Let's look at some facts. After some extensive research, I have discovered that over 53 percent of Vermonters do not approve of same-sex marriages, while only 30 percent do approve. Vital statistics reported that in 2005 there were 5,532 marriages and 452 civil unions. Read more

-Two San Jose Gym Teachers Accused of Lesbian Tryst with Students
Kilian Melloy | EDGE Contributor | EDGE Boston
Rita Brum (Source:San Jose Police Dept.)
Two arrests in a short period of time have been made concerning female gym instructors alleged to have had romantic relationships with female students while teaching in San Jose area schools. A Mar. 11 story in the Mercury News reported the arrest of 24-year-old Rita Brum, a P.E. instructor accused of having had an affair with a 17-year-old girl who was one of her students. Brum taught at East San Jose's Mt. Pleasant High School, the article said. Evidence for the affair was discovered by the student's mother, who reportedly found a love letter from Brum to the girl. When the girl was asked about the letter, she told her mother that she and Brum had been involved. The girl later detailed the relationship to police, saying that she'd been invited to Brum's house last December to watch sports on TV when the two shared their first kiss. Read more

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-Frank Says He's Disgusted By AIG Bonuses
Lawmaker Calls For Shake-Up At AIG
Lawmakers are heaping criticism on insurance giant American International Group after learning that the bailed-out company has been passing out millions of dollars in executive bonuses. Massachusetts lawmaker Barney Frank said he's disgusted by the latest $165 million in AIG payouts, part of a larger payout of about $450 million. The company has received more than $170 billion in federal rescue funds.

-Obama Wants To Halt AIG Bonuses
Payouts Followed Recklessness And Greed," Obama Says
President Barack Obama said his administration will "pursue every legal avenue" to stop insurance giant American International Group from paying $165 million in executive bonuses. Obama made the declaration at the outset of an appearance at the White House to announce new steps to ease loans for small businesses hurt by the economic crisis. AIG is in financial straits because of "recklessness and greed," Obama said. "It's hard to understand how derivative traders at AIG warranted any bonuses, much less $165 million in extra pay."


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