Friday, May 15, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - May 15, 2009

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New York Times
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Ex-Archbishop Speaks About Catholic Church and Homosexuality
In spring 2002, as the scandal over sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests was escalating, the long career of Archbishop Rembert G. Weakland of Milwaukee, one of the church’s most venerable voices for change, went up in flames one May morning.

AIDS WALK NEW YORK Sunday, a 6.2-mile walk in Central Park, beginning at 10 a.m. in the Sheep Meadow, south of 72nd Street. Signup begins at 8:30 a.m. at the Fifth Avenue and 59th Street entrance. Sponsored by the Gay Men’s Health Crisis.(212) 807-9255,

A ‘Marine’ for Catholics Sees a Time of Battle
William A. Donohue, the perennially indignant president of the Catholic League for Civil and Religious Rights, had no sooner finished a conference call with reporters Wednesday, in which he demanded the firing of a new White House aide, when CNN called.

GPS and Privacy Rights
The police generally need a search warrant to enter a person’s home or to listen to phone calls. But courts have been divided on whether the police must obtain a warrant before placing a GPS device on a car. New York State’s highest court ruled this week that they do, an important victory for privacy rights.

Man Beaten in Village; Police Suspect Bias Attack
A 50-year-old man visiting from Buffalo was assaulted by a group of young men early on Thursday in the West Village, and the police said they were investigating the attack as a possible gay bias crime.

New Hampshire Pact Near on Same-Sex Marriage
Gov. John Lynch of New Hampshire said Thursday that he would sign the state’s same-sex marriage bill if it was amended to further shield opponents from having to take part in ceremonies celebrating such unions.

Washington Post
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Showy, fearless Lambert inspires passion in fans
The other night, after her 3-year-old son was in bed, confirmed Adam Lambert fanatic Sue Murrell was glued to her DVR, watching "American Idol."

Moscow braces for European musical song contest
MOSCOW -- Amid a frenzied light show, pyrotechnics and questionable wardrobe decisions, performers from across Europe will seek melodic supremacy Saturday night at the annual Eurovision song contest.

The Rhetoric of the Rant
By Michael Gerson
The first response to the performer on a public stage wishing the death of a stranger for political reasons was discomfort. Wanda Sykes had "crossed a line" at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner in accusing Rush Limbaugh of terrorism and treason, mocking his past drug addiction and wishing his kidneys would fail. But a counterreaction soon developed: Humor often is transgressive, and if you can't take it, don't dish it, and let's everyone lighten up a bit, and can't anyone take a joke anymore?

N.H. Governor Wants Gay-Marriage Bill to Shield Churches: New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch (D) said he will sign a bill to make his state the sixth to legalize same-sex marriage, but only if it strengthens protections for churches opposed to the practice. The bill, which the legislature has passed, would allow churches to decide whether they will conduct weddings for gay couples.

Scotus prospect draws criticism from gay groups
Georgia Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears, considered a potential nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, has drawn criticism from gay rights groups after announcing plans to join a think tank whose founder is an outspoken opponent of gay marriage.

Wall Street Journal
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Pretty on the Inside?
In Riyadh this week, 200 young Muslim women began a 10-week quest to be crowned Saudi Arabia's official beauty queen. To most Americans, "Miss Beautiful Morals," as the contest is called, wouldn't even qualify as a beauty pageant: Gone is the bikini competition -- these beauties will wear black abayas. They will compete instead to show their "commitment to Islamic morals," like respect for their parents. Pageant founder Khadra al-Mubarak was happy to distinguish her contest from similar events in the West: "It's an alternative to the calls for decadence in the other beauty contests that only take into account a woman's body and looks," she told the Associated Press.

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Review: Kirby Dick's powerful, disturbing 'Outrage'
By Kenneth Turan
Outrage is a title that demands to be broken into two parts: "out" and "rage." A powerful and disturbing documentary by Kirby Dick, it examines one of the most unexpected dynamics in contemporary American politics: the existence of right-wing, family-values conservative Republicans who are alleged to be closeted gays themselves.,0,7582725.story

Miami Herald
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Anti-gay church to protest here
A radical Kansas-based church plans to hold a series of anti-gay protests in South Florida this weekend.
A small, radical Midwestern church that has made headlines for picketing Iraq War veterans' funerals plans to protest an America it believes has gone pro-gay and anti-God with demonstrations in South Florida beginning this weekend. Its targets are Calvary Chapel in Fort Lauderdale; St. Thomas Episcopal, University Baptist and Church of the Little Flower in Coral Gables; Temple Israel in Miami; the University of Miami Law School graduation, and the consulates of Japan, Israel, Argentina, Brazil and Chile, according to the website of Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kan.

The Advocate
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Eminem Turns to Elton During Rehab
By Rhiza Dizon
In Vibe magazine’s June/July issue, cover star Eminem opens up about turning to Elton John during his early days of rehab.

Lawrence King's Parents Score Legal Victory
By Neal Broverman
A judge ruled this week that the parents and brother of Lawrence King -- the gay 15-year-old California boy who was slain by a classmate in February 2008 -- can sue the foster home where he lived at the time of his death.

Uruguay May Repeal Gay Military Ban
Andrew Harmon
While the Obama administration grapples with its stated intent to repeal the U.S. military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, Uruguay has moved one step ahead.

Pink News - UK
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Baltic Pride to go ahead after court lifts council ban
Baltic Pride has been saved after Riga's Administrative Court lifted a ban imposed by the city council on tomorrow's Pride march.

Daily Queer News
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Anchorage Assembly Considering Gay Rights Ordinance
Megan Holland | The Anchorage Daily News | Miami Herald
A proposed ordinance to ban discrimination against gays and lesbians in hiring, housing and education will be considered by the Anchorage Assembly next month. It would also ban discrimination against military veterans. The ordinance brings to the forefront a gay rights issue that has bitterly divided Anchorage in the past, and at least one local religious leader said Tuesday he plans to battle it again. Assemblyman Patrick Flynn, a supporter of the ordinance, said it’s time Anchorage stands up for all its residents. “People are simply people,” he said. “It is wrong to discriminate against them just because the person they happen to love and make a family with is the same gender.” A public hearing on the measure is set for June 9. Read more

NC Senate Set to Debate Sex Ed, Anti-Bullying Laws
Teacher Magazine
The North Carolina Senate could expand how students receive sex education in public schools. The Senate on Monday has scheduled the first of two votes for a bill that would require schools to offer children in grades seven though nine one curriculum focused on abstinence until marriage and another with more about contraception. Parents would choose either one for their child or none at all. The measure passed the House last month, and if there are no changes by the Senate, it would go on to Gov. Beverly Perdue for her signature. The Senate also considers Monday whether schools must adopt detailed anti-bullying policies. The legislation is opposed by conservative Christians who said it would advance special protections for gay people. Read more

Obama Seeks to Turn Around 5,000 Schools
Associated Press | Teachers Magazine
President Barack Obama intends to use $5 billion to prod local officials to close failing schools and reopen them with new teachers and principals. The goal is to turn around 5,000 failing schools in the next five years, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Monday, by beefing up funding for the federal school turnaround program created by the No Child Left Behind law. Obama doesn’t have authority to close and reopen schools himself. That power rests with local school districts and states. But he has an incentive in the economic stimulus law, which requires states to help failing schools improve. Read more

Forget Tech for a Second: How Will the Arts Help the Obama Administration?
Sarah Ingersoll, Meaningful Media | AlterNet
The Obama campaign mobilized an unprecedented amount of activity from the creative community. Musicians, actors, comedians, filmmakers, graphic designers, painters, sculptors, and others applied their talents to registering, educating, and engaging voters. Shepard Fairey, the Obama Girl, Oprah, and were critical to branding an unfamiliar candidate and making us feel connected to him. While there has been a tremendous amount of discussion about the role of technology and new media in winning the election, and its role going forward in the new Administration, there has been little talk about the role of culture. Until now. Yesterday, more than 60 artists and creative organizers engaged in civic participation, community development, education, social justice, activism, and philanthropy came together at the White House for a briefing on arts and social change.

Court Rules Florida Must Honor Gay Second-Parent Adoptions
Today, the Florida Court of Appeals unanimously reversed a lower court ruling and held that Florida must give full faith and credit to adoptions granted to same-sex couples by other states, holding that Lara Embry, the plaintiff in the case, “must be given the same rights as any other adoptive parent in Florida.” The court based its decision on the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the federal constitution and a Florida statute requiring Florida to honor adoption decrees from other states. Noting that “there are no public policy exceptions to the full faith and credit which is due to judgments entered in another state,” the court concluded that “regardless of whether the trial court believed that the Washington adoption violated a clearly established public policy in Florida, it was improper for the trial court to refuse to give the Washington judgment full faith and credit.” A concurring opinion further noted that Embry’s “same-sex relationship with [the other parent] is irrelevant for the purpose of enforcing her rights and obligations as an adoptive parent.” Read more


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