Sunday, April 26, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - April 26, 2009

**IF YOU CAN'T ACCESS THE FULL ARTICLE, CONTACT US AT and we'll be happy to send the full article.

New York Times
Go to the links for the following articles:

-From a Pulpit, Peace Over Politics
BABY BOOMERS supposedly are divisive people, still locked in the political and cultural wars of the 1960s and '70s. This, we're told, is why Barack Obama, though technically a boomer (b. 1961), isn't actually a boomer. He is alleged to be the next generation, a master of consensus who refuses to be bogged down in the old quagmires. This view of boomers is outdated. It is true we're a generation with strong opinions. Coming of age in the era of Vietnam, civil rights, feminism and gay rights, we would have had to be dead not to have strong opinions.

-Bea Arthur, TV Battle-Ax, Dies at 86
Bea Arthur, who used her husky voice, commanding stature and flair for the comic jab to create two of the most endearing battle-axes in television history, Maude Findlay in the groundbreaking situation comedy "Maude" and Dorothy Zbornak in "The Golden Girls," died Saturday at her home in Los Angeles. She was coy about her age, and sources give various dates for her birth, but a family spokesman, Dan Watt, said in an e-mail message she was 86.

-Same-Sex Ruling Belies the Staid Image of Iowa
As of Monday, gay couples will be allowed to marry in places like this small town that once served as the background for Grant Wood's "American Gothic," the painter's famous depiction of stern, traditional Midwesterners.

-Presbyterians Bending Toward Justice
By Rev. Dr. Janet Edwards
Co-Moderator of the More Light Presbyterians
"Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice." Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke those prophetic words at the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1967. From a different time and a different movement, his words resonate with me today as I absorb the news from my church, the Presbyterian Church (USA), that ordination of our gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) sisters and brothers in Christ will not happen this year. The national governing body of our church passed an amendment last summer that opened that door, but a majority of local church bodies across the country have failed to ratify it.

Washington Post
Go to the links for the following articles:

-Stray Backpack Prompts Whitman Evacuation
Walt Whitman High School and two nearby houses were briefly evacuated yesterday after a stray backpack was found in the school's parking lot, a discovery that raised particular concern, officials said, because it came a day after activists gathered there to protest the sexual orientation of the poet for whom the Bethesda school was named. A Montgomery County police officer found the bag shortly before noon. Because it contained items that resembled pipes, the bomb squad used a special robot to destroy it. The backpack was determined to be harmless. On Friday, activists from Westboro Baptist Church in Kansas protested at the school, saying it should not have been named for the influential 19th century poet. Whitman is generally regarded as having been gay or bisexual, but his sexual identity remains enigmatic. -- Hamil R. Harris

-My Students. My Cellphone. My Ordeal.
By Ting-Yi Oei
The Channel 4 Newsbreak was meant to shock: "High school assistant principal in Loudoun County arrested for child pornography," announced WRC's Jim Vance. "Details following the Olympics." That was last Aug. 20. The assistant principal was me. And the story on the late evening news that night was how many people who knew me -- and countless others in the Washington area who didn't -- learned that I was the subject of a prosecution that over the past year has turned my life upside down and ruined my reputation and my career. Although all the charges against me were recently thrown out of court, my experience is a warning for all educators who find themselves trying to negotiate the slippery terrain where rapidly advancing technology intersects with risky adolescent behavior.

Go to the links for the following articles:

-Busy agenda emulates Roosevelt style
Doyle McManus
If it seems arbitrary -- even unfair -- to take the measure of a new president after just 100 days in office, you can blame Franklin D. Roosevelt. In 1933, with the nation in a financial meltdown, Roosevelt came to the White House and, with an enthusiastic Democratic Congress at his command, enacted a whirlwind of emergency legislation. There was a bank stabilization bill, unemployment relief and farm supports, stock market regulation, the creation of the Tennessee Valley Authority -- and the repeal of Prohibition. It took FDR only 103 days to launch that first version of his New Deal, and that initial storm set a tone for the rest of Roosevelt's first term: constant action, bold experimentation, unprecedented expansion of the authority of the federal government.,0,2110674.story

-Gay couples' marriages to set Iowa apart
State residents less surprised than outsiders about legal pioneering
By Monica Davey
As of Monday, gay couples will be allowed to marry in places like this small town that once was the background for Grant Wood's American Gothic, the painter's famous depiction of stern, traditional Midwesterners. Many people, even some who live here, cannot mesh their plain-Jane image of Iowa with the front lines of the same-sex marriage debate.,0,7613792.story

-Couch surfing gives smart travelers some financial cushion
Travelers save money, make friends through global Web site.
By Charles Grau
When Will Bradwell and his friends were planning a cross-country road trip three years ago, the idea of paying for hotels, gas and food seemed impossible for their college-student budgets. Then a friend suggested Launched in January 2004, it's a hospitality-exchange networking site where people offer free lodging. When opening a free account, you can choose to host, surf or show travelers around (even if you're not hosting).,0,473939.story

-Gay travelers unwilling to give up their trips
In bad economy, travel industry is making a pitch for 'pink money.'
By Rex W. Huppke
As Americans rejigger their budgets to abide the nation's economic gloom, travel plans are being routinely cast aside, leading to plummeting airline traffic and a tourism downturn around the globe. But at least one demographic has refused to relinquish its passion for travel. Chicagoan Tim Engdahl is part of that group: gay, gainfully employed, with no kids and a lifelong wanderlust.,0,4013926.story

South Florida Blade
Go to this link for the following articles:

-Missing BlackBerry data at issue in Wone murder
Defense team says data could have helped prove innocence
Attorneys representing three gay men charged with obstruction of justice in connection with the murder of Washington attorney Robert Wone accused prosecutors in court Friday of failing to preserve evidence from Wone's BlackBerry cell phone that could have helped prove their clients' innocence.

The Advocate
Go to this link for the following articles:

-Rent Opens at Orange County High School
By Boo Jarchow
A student production of Rent at Corona del Mar High School in Newport Beach, Calif., will open tonight, despite having originally been canceled by the school's principal because of objections to the play's gay content. Students wore rainbow buttons to support the musical, which were confiscated by school officials. However, after reading the script, principal Fal Asrani gave permission to go ahead with the production. But the drama didn't end there.

-Westboro Planning Mass Suicide?
By Michelle Garcia
The world may not be seeing more of the controversial fundamentalist Westboro Baptist Church in the near future. A cryptic blog entry posted by the Topeka, Kan.-based church on April 18 -- and unearthed by Gossip-Boy -- says "it's about time for us to leave this place."

Pink News - UK
Go to this link for the following articles:

-Linguists fired under military gay ban 'could have alerted US over 9/11'
A leading campaigner in the fight to repeal the US military gay ban has said that a lack of skilled linguists, who were fired for being gay, may have undermined the government's potential to prevent the September 11th bombings.

Fort Report
Go to the links for the following articles:

-Charlie Crist is the "headliner" of Outrage, the documentary about gay politicians
posted by OtownRog
Florida Governor Charlie Crist is the lead attraction in Kirby Dick's documentary Outrage, about closetedCrist politicians who vote against gay rights, according to Jeff Wells, who just saw it at Tribeca. This is the director of the terrific This Film is Not Yet Rated, so it's not easy to dismiss, even though Dick's sourcing (alt weeklies) seems suspect. Can't find where it says the film will be shown in a few Florida cities in May on the official site, though a commenter on an earlier post maintains that is the case. anybody got a link?

Forwarded from Euro-Queer
Contact for the full article:

-Michelle Obama and Frank Kameny
For those who don't know, Dr. Kameny was a pioneer gay activist who helped persuade the APA to remove homosexuality from the DSM.

Southern Poverty Law Center
Contact for the full article:

-Today we filed suit to stop the horrible abuse of children at a Mississippi detention center, where they are confined in filthy, bug-infested cells for 23 hours a day with no adequate mental health or education services. Our client, D.W., is a 17-year-old African-American youth who endured a brutal physical assault by guards who slammed his face into a concrete floor. After a week at the facility, he tried to hang himself with a bed sheet. But rather than provide him counseling, guards harassed and taunted him - telling him his mother no longer cared and would not visit him again. The children held at the Harrison County Juvenile Detention Center in Biloxi are not hardened criminals. Most are accused of minor, nonviolent offenses and are simply awaiting court hearings.

Gay American Heros
Contact for the full article:

-BRAVE... School district launches website promoting 'gay' pride in classrooms
Under the stated intent of making schools "safer" for all students, the San Francisco Unified School District has launched a website - believed to be the first of its kind - that provides resources designed to "meet the needs of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth" in its schools. "April is Gay Pride Celebration!" touts the website's home page. "Check out some of the event options in our 'Host an Activity' section." In addition to the "Host an Activity" section, loaded with suggestions on how teachers can celebrate Gay Pride Month in their classrooms, the website includes dozens of resources, including district policies on sexual expression and discrimination issues, curriculum for teaching on LDBTQ issues, a list of district-approved speakers and presentations, studies, and testimonials from school officials on how they're making their schools more friendly to LGBTQ students. Susan, a school nurse from Burton High School, for example, explains the steps her school is taking: "Probably the most fun activity that we've organized and I think the most informative for the students is what we call the Rainbow Café," writes Susan. "One week during Gay Pride Month ... we have a room that's set aside and there are snacks. The [Gay-Straight Alliance] has usually chosen a topic, and each day at lunch there's a speaker on a different topic. So Monday might be gays in the military, Tuesday might be gay parents, the next day might be gays and religion, and then it might be legislating civil rights for gays. We usually culminate the week with a Day of Silence. We've asked teachers to give extra credit to allow kids to come who wouldn't normally come. But because they get extra credit, kids who wouldn't be exposed to this kind of programming will be taught to think about it. "Another fun activity we do at the high school level," Susan continues, "is we bring the New Conservatory Theater every year to perform 'The Other Side of the Closet.' Students then have an opportunity to hold a discussion afterward. It's fabulous."

Contact for the full article

-A Message of Challenge and Hope to the Roman Catholic Church
In our continuing dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church, Soulforce members and friends arrived in New York City from around the country to take a message of challenge and hope directly to the office of the Vatican at the United Nations. Soulforce asked the church to take a stand against recent defamatory language from Roman Catholic leaders, and join 67 other countries in signing the UN Declaration on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity.
[...] Watch videos: and

Human Rights Campaign [HRC]
Judy Shepard has waited more than 10 years for this moment. Congress could vote as soon as NEXT WEEK on the hate crimes bill that would give LGBT people the protections they need and deserve, and honor the memory of Judy's son. And tomorrow, during House Judiciary Committee action, right-wing lawmakers are planning an attempt to derail the bill with "poison pill" amendments. So your action is more urgent than ever. Watch this powerful new video of Judy's personal story, and take action on the hate crimes bill now!


[Send your comments about articles to]

No comments: