Sunday, August 30, 2009

GLBT DIGEST - August 30, 2009

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Washington Post
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A Marriage Like Any Other
By Rich Madaleno
In 2002, I became the first openly gay person elected to the Maryland General Assembly. It was important to me to be straightforward about who I was while not being pigeonholed as "the gay guy." I immersed myself in my role as a public servant, focused on my constituents and worked hard. As time passed, people began to see me as "the budget guy," or as an advocate for education, addiction treatment or developmental disability programs, or simply as Rich. My colleagues also came to know my husband, Mark.

'89 Thesis A Different Side of McDonnell
Va. GOP Candidate Wrote on Women, Marriage and Gays
By Amy Gardner
At age 34, two years before his first election and two decades before he would run for governor of Virginia, Robert F. McDonnell submitted a master's thesis to the evangelical school he was attending in Virginia Beach in which he described working women and feminists as "detrimental" to the family. He said government policy should favor married couples over "cohabitators, homosexuals or fornicators." He described as "illogical" a 1972 Supreme Court decision legalizing the use of contraception by unmarried couples.

Steve Rothaus
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Soccer tarnished by cold-shoulder to gays, writes Associated Press sports columnist
By JOHN LEICESTER, AP Sports Columnist
PARIS -- Marcello Lippi, Italy's World Cup-winning soccer manager who seems to have both feet planted in the 19th century, says he's never come across a gay player in his 40-odd years in the sport.

New GOP senator, George LeMieux, supported gay adoptions and domestic partner benefits in ‘98 campaign
Eight years ago, the young chairman of the Broward Republican Party appealed to his cohorts to stay out of a divisive petition drive to overturn the county's gay rights law. ``GOP UNITY'' read the banner he unfurled as he walked through a hushed crowd, arguing that the petition would distract from the party's true goal -- electing Republicans.

Case is a serious challenge to Florida's gay-adoption ban
An adoption case that is now before an appellate court case presents a significant challenge to Florida's law against gays.
As lawyers for a North Miami man seeking to adopt his two foster kids squared off with the state in an appellate courtroom last week, an irony pervaded the hearing: Martin Gill is a terrific foster dad to the boys and should be allowed to keep them, the state admitted. He just can't adopt them because he's gay.

Gallery | 'Take Me Out' at Rising Action Theatre through Oct. 4
Take Me Out, the Tony-winning Broadway hit about a professional baseball player named Darren Lemming who suddenly announces he's gay, runs through Oct. 4 at Rising Action Theatre, 840 E. Oakland Park Blvd..
The Richard Greenberg play is well-acted by co-stars Laris Macario, Larry Buzzeo, Terry Cuzzort and Ted Dvoracek.

Miami Herald
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End biased policy
Re Keith Meinhold's Aug. 24 Other Views article, We serve this country honorably, too: As a member of the clergy, I endorse Meinhold's call to abolish the military's discriminatory ``don't ask, don't tell.'' His assertion that we should allow soldiers to exercise the freedoms they defend is on point. This should apply during active duty and when service is complete. It is time we fully acknowledge our gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered (GLBT) sisters and brothers and grant them the blessings of full participation in society. GLBT neighbors, co-workers, family members and friends serve us in many ways outside military service. It is time they have access to all the rights and responsibilities that many of us take for granted, including full rights to adopt and to marry. Anything less falls short of our country's highest ideals for equality, liberty and justice for all. 5 !!END TAG!! interim minister, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Miami, Miami

The Advocate
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Rep. Hastings Pushes Obama on DADT
By Michelle Garcia
Florida Representative Alcee Hastings told President Barack Obama that he is "deeply disappointed" that the military's ban on gay and lesbian military personnel has yet to be lifted. Hastings sent an open follow-up letter to the president on Thursday, reminding him that in June, 77 representatives called for a moratorium on investigating cases of service members accused of being gay.

Daily Queer News
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PA: ‘Gender Stereotyping’ Case Sent Back to Trial
Brian Bowling | TRIBUNE-REVIEW | Pittsburgh Live
The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals today partly overturned a Pittsburgh judge’s dismissal of a gay Penn Hills man’s lawsuit against his former employer. Brian D. Prowel worked for Butler-based Wise Business Forms from 1991 to 2004. The company cited “lack of work” when it fired him. Federal law doesn’t protect people from discrimination based on sexual orientation, but the U.S. Supreme Court has held since 1989 that federal law does prohibit “gender stereotyping,” or discriminating against someone who doesn’t conform to stereotypical behavior for their gender.

Gay Catholics Endorse National Equality March on Washington
Paula Brooks | LezGetReal
An organization of LGBT Catholics, TheRainbow Sash Movement, has come out in support of the National Equality March on Washington scheduled for this fall. This past November, when by a slim majority of voters, California’s Proposition 8 banned gay marriage in that state; tens of thousands took to the streets in California and across the country, in grassroots protests

Focus on the Family Cheers ‘Good News’ for Ex-Gay Fugitive
Michael Airhart | Truth Wins Out
Since 2004, “former lesbian” Lisa Miller has violated numerous court rulings in Vermont and Virginia that granted visitation rights to her former partner Janet Jenkins for their daughter Isabella, who was born in 2002. After unfavorable family-court rulings, Miller worked with religious-right activists to undermine U.S. family law by demanding a special right of ex-gays and religious extremists to move from state to state to escape their family obligations. Had she succeeded, the ability of U.S. states to enforce custody and deadbeat-dad laws could have been damaged. But on June 6, 2008, the Virginia Supreme Court upheld Vermont’s jurisdiction over her former partnership and the resulting child. The Liberty Counsel then vowed to find other ways to sidestep the nation’s laws. In October, a Vermont court was to have considered jailing Miller for contempt of court.

Uganda Ex-Gay Vigilante Exposed?
Michael Airhart | Truth Wins Out
George Oundo, the poster man for a campaign launched by U.S. ex-gay political leaders to promote vigilantism and arrest against same-sex-attracted persons in Uganda, has reportedly been expelled from his ex-gay organization due to sexual scandal. Earlier this year, Oundo was a frontman for Martin Ssempa, a violently antigay African pastor who allegedly received substantial sums of money from U.S. global anti-AIDS programs begun under the Bush administration. Instead of combatting AIDS or promoting faith-based health assistance to Africans, Ssempa used the money to launch a string of violent antigay vigilante campaigns monitored by Human Rights Watch.

Exodus Youth Condemns Bullying by Singling Out Gay Students
Patrick Fitzgerald | Ex-Gay Watch
In a piece called “Ministry to Gay Students,” Shawn Harrison of Exodus Youth goes the extra mile to portray condescension and religious supremacism as compassion. He also believes that the Bible is inerrant. First we get the compassion part: There is no question that high schools and middle schools across this nation are ground zero for students who face peer pressure, bullying, low self-esteem, depression, and the like. One of the most disturbing of these is bullying… …and occasionally ends with students getting beat up, receiving death threats, missing school, changing schools, and in some cases, even attempting suicide. On his 611 ministries website/blog, he even shares that he attempted suicide:

Exodus Unable to Give a Numerical Success Rate
Emily K | Ex-Gay Watch
In a post by Brad Sargent on the Exodus blog, the success rate of ex-gay therapy is addressed. 25 years ago, Brad became involved in Exodus. He started working for them in 1991, and was often addressed with the question, “What is your success rate?” Unable to give any numerical result, he was forced to respond thusly: That question popped up so often, it became a frustration. There were no formal studies available from Exodus ministries then – who had funds or time to conduct such research? And yet, callers were anxious to know: If I’m going to invest myself in a transformation process, will it pay off? It’s just part of human nature to want a guarantee, but there was (and is) none we could give. What was our success rate? I was at the point of saying, “Well … 100 percent for those who follow Jesus Christ the rest of their life.”

Being Queer and the Fear of Death
Peterson Toscano
In my play Queer 101–Now I Know My gAy,B,Cs I perform a scene as two characters–Chad, a queer studies major who has to take over the introductory to queer theory class since Dr. Eugenes, the transgender professor is out that day, and Federico Garcia Lorca, the early 20th Century Spanish poet and playwright. (see scene below). The audience learns pretty quickly in the play that Chad is not what they expect. Instead he reveals he is intelligent, deep thinking, insightful and willing to expose injustice. At first though they just see a fem guy and make all sorts of assumptions about him and about me for portraying him as a fem guy. Take a look at the scene and then I’ll tell you how I have been using it lately. Read more


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