Tuesday, August 18, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - August 18, 2009

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New York Times
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Matchmaking in India: Canine Division
NEW DELHI — Their lonely-hearts faces peer out of the advertisements, hangdog and looking for love. “Hi, I am Musti,” one poster reads. “I am a well-mannered, good-looking and considerate hunk. I am very health conscious and love my carrots. I am a one-woman man and promise to take good care of you.”

Anchorage Gay Rights Measure Is Set Back by Mayor’s Veto
The mayor of Anchorage on Monday vetoed a ban against discrimination based on sexual orientation, saying it was unclear that such discrimination existed. The mayor, Dan Sullivan, a Republican who took office on July 1, added that “the vast majority of those who communicated their position on the ordinance are in opposition.”

Washington Post
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APA: Therapy Won't Change Gays
On Aug. 4, the American Psychological Association adopted a resolution that says there's no scientific evidence that therapy can make gay people straight. In a review of 83 English-language, peer-reviewed studies from 1960 to 2007, an APA task force found nothing to suggest that therapy could steer a member of a sexual minority (a term that encompasses all varieties and degrees of same-sex attraction) toward heterosexuality.

Obama Says Marriage Law Should Be Repealed
Justice Dept. Filing Distances Administration From Arguments That Angered Gays
By Carrie Johnson
The Obama administration distanced itself Monday from legal arguments it had made earlier this summer, taking pains to remove and renounce language that had outraged advocates in the gay community in a case that centers on the constitutionality of a same-sex marriage law.

Lutherans to Vote on Sexually Active Gay Clergy
By Jacqueline L. Salmon
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, one of the largest Christian denominations in the country, will decide this week whether to allow gay people in relationships to serve as clergy.

Wall Street Journal
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DOJ Shifts Tone on Marriage Act
The Obama administration shifted its tone on a federal marriage law, calling the statute that bars federal benefits for same-sex marriages "discriminatory" even as it filed a legal defense of the law.

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Proposal to allow gay clergy in largest US Lutheran denomination passes 1st hurdle in Minn.
by Patrick Condon
Leaders of the country's largest Lutheran denomination prayed for unity Monday as they waded into a weeklong debate over homosexuality and the clergy, while a rule change that would allow people in same-sex relationships to serve cleared its first hurdle.

Steve Rothaus
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The Laramie Project: Ten years later, Matthew Shepard epilogue to premiere Oct. 12 in over 100 cities
News release from The Laramie Project:
New York, NY, August 18, 2009…..The creators of the highly acclaimed play The Laramie Project, which since 2000 has been one of the most performed plays in America, will premiere a compelling and groundbreaking epilogue to the original piece. Entitled THE LARAMIE PROJECT: 10 YEARS LATER, the play will be performed in New York at Lincoln Center, over 100 other theaters across the country on October 12, 2009. The writers of this play are Tectonic Theater Project members Mois├ęs Kaufman, Leigh Fondakowski, Greg Pierotti, Andy Paris, and Stephen Belber.

Residence for homeless gay youth named for Beatrice Arthur
News release from Ali Forney Center: New York, NY….The Ali Forney Center (AFC), the nation's largest organization dedicated to homeless LGBT youth, will formally announce it's plan to name a residence for LGBT youth in honor of Bea Arthur at her memorial service on September 14th at the Majestic Theater in New York City. The Ali Forney Center is working with a group of Bea's close friends and colleagues to plan the memorial service.

The Advocate
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Gay College Footballers: They Exist
By Michelle Garcia
A survey of 85 college football players shows that nearly half of them know of at least one openly gay athlete actively playing on their team.

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Madonna has birthday in Poland amid protests
By The Associated Press
(Warsaw, Poland) Polish fans joined together in song to wish Madonna a happy birthday at a concert in Warsaw Saturday evening - just hours before she turned 51.

Pink News - UK
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Australian trans men win court appeal over surgery
Two Australian trans men have won a court appeal allowing them to be legally recognised as men without having to have their female reproductive organs removed.

Lady Gaga: 'I'm gay, my show is gay, my fans are gay'
Lady Gaga told Kanye West he had to accept the gayness of her show before they went on tour together. Speaking to Out magazine, the star said she told the rapper that their joint show had to remain gay to keep her fans happy.

Trans woman sues after being asked for photo of genitals
A trans woman who claims she was asked by her employer for a photograph of her genitals has filed a lawsuit. The request was apparently made to confirm which bathroom she should use.

Trans woman performed own surgery after transition delays
A trans woman has performed her own gender reassignment surgery after being told she would have to wait two years for professional help.

Gay Israeli peace campaigner avoids jail for now
A gay Israeli man who has opposed the demolition of Palestinian homes in the occupied West Bank has escaped jail for now. Ezra Nawi will be sentenced on September 21st.

Obama administration says marriage law discriminates against gays but will still defend it
The Obama administration has admitted that the Defence of Marriage Act (DOMA) is discriminatory but has said it will still defend it in court.

Street preacher takes legal action after claiming he was threatened with arrest
A street preacher who read out anti-gay Bible passages in Manchester city centre has accused police of abusing their powers.

Video: Bill Clinton 'regrets' Don't Ask, Don't Tell
Former US president Bill Clinton has said he regrets how the military's ban on gays serving openly was implemented. He was interrupted by a heckler last week in Pittsburgh.

Daily Queer News
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Six Lobbyists Per Lawmaker Work on Health Overhaul
by: Jonathan D. Salant and Lizzie O’Leary | Visit article original @ Bloomberg News
That’s six lobbyists for each of the 535 members of the House and Senate, according to Senate records, and three times the number of people registered to lobby on defense. More than 1,500 organizations have health-care lobbyists, and about three more are signing up each day. Every one of the 10 biggest lobbying firms by revenue is involved in an effort that could affect 17 percent of the U.S. economy. These groups spent $263.4 million on lobbying during the first six months of 2009, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a Washington-based research group, more than any other industry. They spent $241.4 million during the same period of 2008. Drugmakers alone spent $134.5 million, 64 percent more than the next biggest spenders, oil and gas companies. More . . .

Fight for the Public Option
Marc Ash, t r u t h o u t | Perspective
As August comes to a close, one of the most important debates in American history will come to a point of decision making. Will Americans have the option to support their own health care system if they choose? It will not only be important as a political precedent or as policy statement; it will be a landmark moment socially. Will we as Americans care for Americans in illness and need? The conflict could not be more stark, the stakes any higher. Read more

NLGJA Reaches Out to Journalists in Troubled Times
Media Contact: Tom Avila, 202-588-9888 or tavila@nlgja.org
New membership level available for media professionals who are without a Job
The National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA) is reaching out to help journalists and members who are struggling because of the economy and newsroom cutbacks. NLGJA is offering a steeply discounted membership to individuals who are currently without a job. Normally $75, a year’s membership at the $25 level provides access to the “Members Only” Job Bank, NLGJA’s CareerWatch e-newsletter and numerous training resources, as well as opportunities to network through the online Members Directory.

Alabama Bishop Defends Episcopal Church Statement in Support of Ordainig Homosexuals
News | AL.com
Although critics have blasted the Episcopal Church for its statement in support of ordaining homosexuals this week at its General Convention, Alabama Bishop Henry N. Parsley defended the denomination’s stance as valuing the rights of all its members. “We passed a large and subtle resolution, wanting to value the ministries of gays and lesbians,” Parsley said in an interview. The Episcopal Convention, meeting in Anaheim, Calif., passed a resolution Tuesday that “any ordained ministry” in the 2.3 million-member denomination is open to homosexuals. Read more

WA: Anti-Gay Rights Ref. Signature Check Half Finished
Seattle Post Intelligencer
State elections officials say the check of Referendum 71 signatures is almost half done - with more than 65,000 examined. R-71 is the measure seeking to overturn Washington’s “everything but marriage” same-sex domestic partner law. David Ammons, secretary of state spokesman, said the latest tally shows 58,306 signatures accepted “and 7,225 rejected (6,165 because the person wasn’t found on the state voter database, 24 where a digital signature is needed from the voter’s home county in order to compare with the signature on the petition, 566 where the signer’s signature did not match the one on file, and 470 duplicates.)” Read more

TN School District Dumps Filters that Block LGBT Sites
Rocco Staino — School Library Journal, 8/17/2009
A federal court has dismissed a lawsuit against two Tennessee school districts for agreeing to stop using Internet filters that block access to information about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues (LGBT). The Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools and Knox County Schools agreed to the settlement after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit on May 19 saying that the filters were censoring important educational information. The suit was filed on behalf of three Nashville high school students, as well as a Knoxville student and high school librarian, who is also the advisor of her school’s Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA). Read more

America Is Still Paying for the Sin of Slavery
Alex Blaze | Bilerico Project
I was in and out last week, and this week will be the same. I did want to comment briefly on the current health care “debate.” It’s depressing that some people think other people (or even themselves) going to the doctor will destroy the country. All this foreign usurper stuff is undoubtedly related to the current protesters against health care, and I seriously doubt that they’d be up in arms if Bush were pushing for the same sort of moderate health care reforms Obama’s pushing for. But the title refers to more than Obama’s skin color. No, the reason Truman wasn’t able to get universal health care was because, fundamentally, poor and working class conservatives, especially Southerners, oppose social services because they think undeserving black people will get them. Slavery, especially post-Enlightenment, was a system that required a fundamental disavowal of the value of certain humans (and autonomy, democracy, and humanity themselves) in order to work. Several centuries of it caused the basic ways we see the world to change. It created a breed of people who identify more with the interests of rich people than other poor people. It’s Pavlovian in that most of these folks don’t even know enough to know why they’re protesting against health care, but they know the people they trust to tell them what’s right are saying this will kill grandma and destroy America, so they pull out their guns and head down to a town hall. It’s not about different reasoning or values or experiences.
As Nathan Glazer put it: Read more


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