Sunday, April 05, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - April 05, 2009

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New York Times
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-Iowa Decency
Like the state's earlier landmark civil rights cases - striking down slavery in 1839, for example, and segregation in 1868 and 1873 - the ruling on gay marriage by Iowa's Supreme Court is a refreshing message of fairness and common sense from the nation's heartland.

-A Push Is On for Same-Sex Marriage Rights Across New England
The Iowa Supreme Court's approval of same-sex marriage on Friday gave advocates an important first victory in the nation's heartland, thwarting the notion that only the Northeast will accept it.

-A Covenant to Do More Than Coexist
WHITE PLAINS: WHEN David Juhren gives directions to the new headquarters of the Loft, the region's well-known community center for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people, he says, "Look for the rainbow flag out front." Then Mr. Juhren, the Loft's executive director, likes to add, "And it's not ours - it's the church's."

-Bequest Request
When my partner of 20 years died, he asked friends to donate to one of several gay-oriented charities. My parents declined because they and their church do not condone homosexuality, but they handed me a blank check for $50. My parents both died recently. In their will, they "request" us children to tithe our inheritances to their church. I do not want to support this church. Must I? JAMES, TEXAS

Washington Post
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-Russian Orthodox Church a growing political force
MOSCOW -- The glittering Christ the Savior Cathedral, a pale-white marble structure decorated with bronze statuary and swaths of gold leaf, is more than just Moscow's grandest and most opulent place of worship. Built in the 1990s as a replica of a church dynamited by Communists in 1931, the cathedral symbolizes the Moscow Patriarchate's rising political influence _ which may be greater today than at any time since the 17th century. It also serves as global headquarters of vast and expanding business operations that experts say are worth several billion dollars.

Forwarded from Kenneth Sherrill - Ken's List
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-Pride Depot
Denial of health coverage to same-sex spouse ruled unconstitutional
Friday, February 6th, 2009
The LA Times reported yesterday that a federal judge ruled that the denial of healthcare coverage and other benefits to the same-sex spouse of a Los Angeles public defender, as unconstitutional, calling into question the validity of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which discriminates against same-sex partnerships. 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Stephen Reinhardt said the federal government refusal to grant spousal benefits to Tony Sears, the husband of deputy federal public defender Brad Levenson, amounted to unlawful discrimination on the basis of sex and sexual orientation. Although the article says that this case does not establish a precedent that will have to be followed in other cases where DOMA is challenged, same-sex spouses do have the right to sue under Title VII and other statutes.

Fort Report
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-Obama's civil rights nominee should be ready for a fight
Thomas Perez will be put through the grinder for the rights post, 'arguably the most difficult position to fill in the federal government when it comes to Senate confirmation,' one official says.
By Paul West
Reporting from Washington -- In the annals of capital partisanship, their names are boldfaced: the candidates for America's highest civil rights post who never got confirmed.,0,755415.story?track=rss

Forwarded from Gays Without Borders
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-State Dept.: Reports of Iraqi Gay Executions Completely Bogus
A group called Iraqi LGBT, run out of London by exiled self-identified gay Iraqi Ali Hili, has alleged that the Iraqi government is set to execute more than 100 men for the "crime" of homosexuality, according to a March 31 article posted at UK Gay News. A spokesperson for the U.S. State Department who works at the Iraqi Desk and spent a year in the war-torn country told EDGE that the story has no merit. "Homosexuality is not a crime in Iraq," said John Fleming, the public affairs officer for the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs.

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-A victory in the heartland
Gay marriage approval in Iowa welcomed, but focus in New England
The Iowa Supreme Court's approval of same-sex marriage on Friday gave advocates an important first victory in the nation's heartland, thwarting the notion that only the Northeast will accept it. But for now, New England remains the nucleus of the same-sex marriage movement, with a campaign under way to extend marriage rights to gay men and lesbians in all six of the region's states by 2012.,0,1392565.story

Steve Rothaus
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-Gallery | San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom campaigns at Halo Lounge Miami
Gavin Newsom at HaloSan Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom made several campaign stops in South Florida on Saturday, raising money for his planned campaign for California governor. Newsom spent about 90 minutes at Halo Lounge Miami, one of Miami Beach's hottest gay bars. He shook hands, posed for lots of photos and gave a quick campaign speech touching on topics including healthcare, education, the economy and, of course, same-sex marriage rights. More . . . .

Pink News - UK
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-Six gay men murdered in Iraqi slum
By Staff Writer,
Two gay men have been found dead in the Baghdad Shiite slum of Sadr City following condemnations of homosexuality by a leading local cleric. It has also emerged today that a further four were murdered in March. The Shiite cleric Sattar al-Battat has reportedly repeatedly been condemning homosexuality in Friday prayers.


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