Thursday, September 03, 2009

GLBT DIGEST September 03, 2009

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New York Times
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Editor of Italy Bishops' Daily Quits Over Scandal
ROME (AP) -- The editor of a prominent Catholic newspaper that demanded Premier Silvio Berlusconi answer questions about a sex scandal resigned Thursday after being caught up in scandal himself.

Voters in Maine Will Decide Fate of Same-Sex Marriage Law
Election officials announced Wednesday that opponents of the state’s same-sex marriage law had gathered more than enough voters’ signatures to put the issue to a vote in November, setting the stage for a furious, two-month campaign that will determine whether the number of states allowing the nuptials shrinks to five.

Washington Post
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Mr. McDonnell's Thesis
Robert F. McDonnell is mistaken if he believes that Virginia voters are not interested in the positions he wrote about in 1989. Social issues, including abortion and gay rights, are what he has campaigned on for the past 16 years. If it is true, as he said, that "my views on many issues have changed as I have gotten older," voters deserve to know that. To do less is insulting to both his conservative base, which will no doubt be surprised to find out these issues no longer matter, and to the independents he is courting in the apparent hope that they will simply not find out about his positions.

McDonnell Says Thesis Is Old News. Is It?
By Robert McCartney
Robert F. McDonnell, Republican candidate for Virginia governor, wanted to talk about jobs, transportation, education -- anything except The Thesis. To his chagrin, his 1989 right-wing cultural credo was the subject of two of the five questions at a Rotary Club breakfast Wednesday in a Baptist church basement in Fredericksburg.

Bowing to Donors Over DOMA?
The Post's Aug. 31 editorial on the second brief submitted by the Justice Department in support of the Defense of Marriage Act ["DOMA Do-Over"], removing powerful arguments by the government, overlooked the outrage perpetrated here: A valid legal position of the United States was altered after prominent gay donors threatened to halt contributions to the Democratic Party and its candidates, including President Obama.

Steve Rothaus
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Small screen embraces the ‘g’ word
Perez Hilton can relax now -- same-sex relationships are out and proud. On primetime TV, we mean. Some of our favorite mainstream characters are embracing their bisexual sides (well, the writers are).

Elton John goes grunge with Alice in Chains tribute
By Nekesa Mumbi Moody, Associated Press
Alice in Chains thought it would take a miracle to get Elton John to play on the grunge rock band's tribute record to their late lead singer, Layne Staley. But it only took a listen to the song to get the rock legend on board.

South Florida Blade
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Broward County Commission passes DADT resolution
Vote urging repeal unanimous
Following in the footsteps of Wilton Manors and Oakland Park, the Broward County Commission unanimously approved a resolution asking both Congress and President Obama to repeal the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. The vote requires the county to send a copy of the resolution to the area’s local representatives in Congress as well as the President.

To shop or not to shop
HRC rates GLBT-friendly businesses
Every year the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) publishes a guide of companies, products and services that support equality for the GLBT community. This buyers’ guide is provided as a tool to encourage the community to spend money at GLBT-friendly companies.

Big names back National Equality March
Activists gathering in Washington in October
Lawmakers, celebrities and well-known LGBT activists are lining up to support the National Equality March, a weekend gathering set to begin Oct. 10.
Judy Shepard, the mother of Matthew Shepard, who was murdered in an anti-gay attack in Wyoming in October 1998, is joining lesbian Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), bisexual actor Alan Cumming and about 140 others in endorsing the march.

Women In Network presents donations to area charities
Women in Network, WIN, presented three donation checks to charity this week: PACE Center for Girls in Broward and Palm Beach Counties, Gilda’s Club of South Florida and the Alzheimer’s Family Council of Margate. The money came from WIN’s annual Charity Golf Tournament that was held earlier this year. WIN is a social and networking organization for Lesbian women, formed in 1987 to address the health and education of women.

Focus laying off 75 employees
Focus on the Family announced a reorganization Wednesday that will eliminate 75 jobs — an 8 percent reduction in a workforce that already has been cut twice since September 2008. The Colorado Springs-based ministry is shutting down the creative division of its advertising department, accounting for 30 of the layoffs. The others are from various departments throughout the ministry, including Love Won Out, a program aimed at homosexuals that Focus is handing over to an organization in Florida.

Italian Editor Is Latest Berlusconi Casualty
ROME — In the latest round of an increasingly ferocious, gloves-off row between church and state, the editor of a Catholic newspaper, stepped down on Thursday — just days after a paper tied to Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi accused him of being a homosexual and the target of a sexual harassment lawsuit.

The Advocate
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Idol's Jim Verraros to Marry Boyfriend
American Idol's first openly gay contestant, Jim Verraros, announced on his Facebook page that he and his partner, Bill Brennan, are getting married this weekend.;s_Jim_Verraros_to_Marry_Boyfriend/

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Gay Iraq vet loses congressional primary
By Jennifer Vanasco
Anthony Woods, who served in Iraq until he was dismissed under Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, lost to California’s lieutenant governor John Garamendi in a special primary election to succeed former Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D-Calif.).

Gay military ban stalled?
By Jennifer Vanasco
‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ isn’t on anyone’s agenda in the near future, says Politico (hat tip: Towleroad): “Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) says the Senate is swamped and has little time on the schedule for this fight. The Pentagon brass is reticent and wants a go-slow strategy, while a majority of the rank and file in the military opposes changing the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law. With no Republican co-sponsors for a repeal, key moderate Democrats such as Sens. Jim Webb of Virginia and Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas remain uncommitted.

What’s Good about the Phelps Family
By Ali Davis, Contributing writer
I am such a fan of Vermont lately. As you know, gay marriage became legal in Vermont on September 1, and the Phelps Phamily, always classy to a fault, decided to show up and scream about how bad it is to have gay thoughts even though I have never in my life met someone who seems to spend as much time thinking about the mechanics of gay sex as much as the Phelps clan.

Pink News - UK
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Paramedic accused of homophobia and racism is suspended
A paramedic accused of making derogatory comments about gays, Muslims, black people and women has had his professional registration suspended for a year.

Company behind Gloucester LGBT sex club demands public inquiry
The company which hoped to set up an LGBT sex club in Gloucester's city centre has said it will demand a public inquiry after the plans were rejected. Opponents of the plans said they would turn the city into "Sodom and Gomorrah".

'Where are all the other gay black comedians?'
Comedian Stephen K Amos has spoken about his experiences as a gay black man on the comedy circuit and the issue of race in television.

The ugly side of South Africa's attitude to gays
As the South African city of Johannesburg hosts a gay film festival, three men go on trial for the rape and murder of a lesbian footballer. The high-profile case follows a number of reports of brutal attacks against lesbians.

Controversial Daily Mail journalist to speak at gay event
Daily Mail journalist Melanie Phillips is to speak at a gay networking event later this month in London. The columnist, who has frequently opposed gay adoption and same-sex marriage, was invited to speak by Village Drinks.

Nominees announced for Stonewall Hero and Bigot of the Year
The date for the fourth Stonewall Awards has been announced - along with the contenders for Bigot of the Year.

Daily Queer News
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On Sexual Orientation and Title VII: Are Changes Afoot?
Ashby Jones | Wall Street Journal
Late last week, the Third Circuit issued an opinion in an employment-law case with a provocative set of facts. The court reversed a federal trial court’s decision to dismiss a suit brought by an effeminate, gay man who claimed he was discriminated against because he didn’t conform to a typical male stereotype. The Third Circuit reinstated the suit, allowing the man, Brian Prowel, to bring his suit against his former employer, Wise Business Forms. Click here for the ruling; here for the report from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Best Selling Bible to Become Gender-Inclusive
The Associated Press |
09.01.2009 4:20pm EDT
The top-selling Bible in North America will undergo its first revision in 25 years, modernizing the language in some sections and promising to reopen a contentious debate about changing gender terms in the sacred text. Read more

Other People’s Judgments
John Corvino
“You don’t just want us to tolerate what you gay people do,” my skeptical questioner announced, “you want us to think that it’s RIGHT.” Whenever I hear this point—and it’s pretty often—I always think to myself, “Duh.” Of course I want that. Why would anyone think otherwise?

Conversation with Veterans
Denny Meyer | Gay Military Signal
I’ve spoken with quite a few LGBT veterans over the years, from admirals and generals to a most ordinary WWII private first class. The medals and ribbons they bear on their chests could fill a museum and should. From Valley Forge forward LGBT heroes and heroines have sacrificed their personal freedom for patriotic service. It was Gay Pioneer Dr. Franklin Kameny who, describing his combat service, as a private, against the Nazi war machine in Europe in WWII, told me, “I was just an ordinary soldier.” Imagine! Every word that passes his lips is pure history; and I have felt privileged to be able to sit and converse with him, and so many others.

More Progress Needed Against “Kill Gays” Performer
Major Venues Cancel Buju Banton, But Many Cities Still Hosting Performer
Who Calls for Killing Gays
Last Thursday afternoon the Gay Liberation Network, the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center and activists around the country succeeded in persuading Live Nation, Inc. to cancel its portion of a tour by Buju Banton, a performer notorious for calling for the murder of gays in his songs. This was a huge victory – Live Nation bills itself as the world’s largest concert producer – and resulted in the cancellation of concerts in Chicago , Houston , Dallas and Las Vegas .


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