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03/03/2013

News: Queen Elizabeth, Daft Punk, Rhode Island, CPAC

1NewsIcon Two Oregon men were attacked by a wrench-wielding man hurling anti-gay epithets as they walked their pink poodle. Police are looking into whether or not the incident can be considered a hate crime.

QueenElizabethA1NewsIcon Queen Elizabeth has been hospitalized with gastroenteritis, an intestinal inflammation typically caused by a virus. Apparently these commoner viruses do not know the 86-year old is royalty!

1NewsIcon Gay and lesbian couples, and the wedding industry, are gearing up for spring and summer ceremonies in Maine.

1NewsIcon Former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb sees marriage equality on the horizon. Civil unions, he says, are just the first step.

1NewsIcon Lincoln Chafee, the independent governor of Rhode Island, where same-sex marriage recently passed the state House, makes an economic argument for passage: "Without marriage equality in Rhode Island...very desirable employer(s) will consider the difficulties and costs of hiring in Rhode Island against conditions in other Northeastern states. And the company may simply feel it's wrong to deny its gay and lesbian employees a fundamental freedom: the right to marry the person they love in the state they call home."

1NewsIcon Could docs have a path toward a potential "HIV cure" for newborns? "A baby born with the AIDS virus appears to have been cured, scientists announced Sunday, describing the case of a child from Mississippi who's now 2½ and has been off medication for about a year with no signs of infection... A doctor gave this baby faster and stronger treatment than is usual, starting a three-drug infusion within 30 hours of birth... That fast action apparently knocked out HIV in the baby's blood before it could form hideouts in the body."

1NewsIcon Sequestration and HIV.

Nflenda1NewsIcon While litigation can create positive change in some cases, it likely won't work when it comes to breaking down homophobia in the NFL, says NBC Sports' Mike Florio.

1NewsIcon "Palestinians Only" buses coming soon to Israel.

1NewsIcon Gay Orthodox Jewish group preps for their first seder in Jerusalem.

1NewsIcon Obama's second term will continue to see the judiciary undergo long overdue demographic shifts: "Reelected with strong support from women, ethnic minorities and gays, Obama is moving quickly to change the face of the federal judiciary by the end of his second term, setting the stage for another series of drawn-out confrontations with Republicans in Congress."

1NewsIcon James Franco admits he teases people about his sexuality, and that questions about it are now a big part of his public persona. "One of the things that's very much part of my public image is the question of my sexuality. It's not something that bothers me in the slightest. It hasn't gone away and I get asked about it from all sides. It's partly my doing and partly not my doing," he tells Attitude.

Stepford1NewsIcon From a New York Times op-ed called "The Perils of Perfection:" "Barriers and constraints — anything that imposes artificial limits on the human condition — are being destroyed with particular gusto. Superhuman, another mysterious start-up that could enliven any comedy show, promises to offer, as its co-founder recently put it, an unspecified service that 'helps people be superhuman.' Well, at least they had the decency not to call it The Übermensch."

1NewsIcon Right wing magazine the National Review blasts CPAC for banning the gay group GOProud and not inviting Chris Christie: "...As friends of CPAC and fellow conservative advocates, we nevertheless regret that CPAC has excluded the gay conservative group GOProud and declined to invite New Jersey governor Chris Christie."

1NewsIcon Daft Punk teases a new album.

1NewsIcon The best type of reporters are the ravishing kind...

1NewsIcon Jack the Giant Slayer topped the weak weekend box office with a meager $28 million.

Posted Mar. 3,2013 at 6:25 PM EST by in AIDS/HIV, Barack Obama, Colorado, CPAC, Crime, Gay Marriage, Israel, James Franco, News, NFL, Oregon, Rhode Island, Sports | Permalink | Comments (10)


Keith O'Brien, Cardinal Implicated In Gay Scandal, Admits Sex With Priests

6a00d8341c730253ef017c3715cb47970b-800wiFormer Scottish Cardinal Keith O'Brien, the outrageously anti-gay crusader who stepped down after being accused of "inappropriate acts" with other priests, admitted today that, yes, he did all of the things he denied only a week ago, including coercing subordinates into sexual situations.

His statement:

In recent days certain allegations which have been made against me have become public. Initially, their anonymous and non-specific nature led me to contest them.

However, I wish to take this opportunity to admit that there have been times that my sexual conduct has fallen below the standards expected of me as a priest, archbishop and cardinal.

To those I have offended, I apologise and ask forgiveness.

To the Catholic Church and people of Scotland, I also apologise.

I will now spend the rest of my life in retirement. I will play no further part in the public life of the Catholic Church in Scotland.

Considering the amount of time O'Brien spent spreading lies about gay people and fighting LGBT rights, is an apology enough?

Posted Mar. 3,2013 at 5:40 PM EST by in Catholic Church, Keith O'Brien, News, Religion | Permalink | Comments (53)


James Robinson Discusses Gay Green Lantern, Warner Bros' Confusion

Alan-scott-the-Green-laternnComic fans and creators were on hand at the Emerald City Comicon in Seattle this weekend, and that includes James Robinson, the comic book creator whose work includes the excellent 90s-era Starman and more recent work on the pre-relaunch Justice Society of America and Justice League of America series.

Now that DC has completely retooled its super-powered roster, Robinson's in charge of Green Lantern Alan Scott, aka the Golden Age Green Lantern who was reintroduced as a gay man on a quest to avenge his lovers' death.

Of course Alan Scott was a topic of conversation during Robinson's talk at ECCC this weekend, and Comic Book Resources fills us in on what he had to say, and how Warner Bros, producers of the Green Lantern films, was confused over the structure of the Green Lantern Corp.

Robinson concluded the interview by talking about his current work on "Earth 2," and specifically the motivations behind writing Alan Scott as gay. He lamented the loss of Obsidian, Alan Scott's son, who was a gay character featured in "Justice Society of America."

"There are so few gay characters, I felt like it was a shame to have one of these iconic characters go away. It occurred to me why not make Alan Scott gay, and make him this cool guy?" Robinson said.

Alan Scott was so well received that Robinson received a GLADD nomination for his work. "Having a gay character is part of diversity," he said.

The sexual orientation of Alan Scott didn't faze DC publisher Dan DiDio, who supported Robinson’s decision. Warner Brothers, however, was confused: did this mean that star Ryan Reynolds, who played Hal Jordan in the 2011 film adaptation of "Green Lantern," would be gay?

"Geoff (Johns) had to go in and explain that there were lots of Green Lanterns, and this was just one of them," Robinson said.

 

 

Posted Mar. 3,2013 at 1:21 PM EST by in Comic Books, Green Lantern, News, Ryan Reynolds | Permalink | Comments (6)


Gay Demographics: More Than Just The Sum Of Their Parts

Gallupmappop

The story below about the Anoka-Hennepin School District showed how lawsuits can pave for the way for positive change, and that includes, potentially, the marriage equality suits the Supreme Court will soon hear, debate and weigh in on, and when they do, they'll consider a number of demographic breakdowns and analyses.

Finally! The slowly growing statistics on LGBT Americans are being put to good use. From the Washington Post:

About one in five gay and lesbian couples is raising children under age 18. One in 10 men with a male partner or spouse is a military veteran. As many as 6 million Americans, roughly 2 percent of the population, have a parent who is lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT).

These nuggets of demographic insight into same-sex couples were contained in an amicus brief filed in connection with cases before the Supreme Court on the constitutionality of California’s gay marriage ban and the Defense of Marriage Act.

A decade ago, such precise statistics were impossible to come by. Even now, many of the numbers commonly used to shape government policies are, for gays and lesbians, nonexistent.

But as gays become more visible in politics, demographic research into lesbians and gays is emerging from the shadows. Some gay advocates say it’s time for surveys to ask people their sexual orientation point-blank.

This comes as the NFL finds itself scrutinized for asking recruits about their personal lives, a development that moves that age-old debate about private lives and the power/importance of coming out onto a whole new playing field.

(Above, Gallup's breakdown of LGBT populations across the United States.)

Posted Mar. 3,2013 at 11:50 AM EST by in DOMA, Gay Marriage, News, NFL, Supreme Court | Permalink | Comments (17)


One Year After Lawsuit, Anoka High School A Better Place To Be Gay

6a00d8341c730253ef0168e87a8a21970c-piMinnesota's Anoka-Hennepin School District found itself in the spotlight after the federal government investigated officials and students for failing to protect gay students from bullying. The Southern Poverty Law Center and the National Center for Lesbian Rights also turned its attention to the schools in the form of a lawsuit challenging the school's "neutrality" policy on dealing with gay students.

It was that hands off approach that allowed homophobia and hate to run rampant and led, many argue, to the suicide deaths of at least seven students in the district between 2009 and 2011.

Now, one year after that suit was settled, and the school agreed to reform its policies, things are getting better. They're not perfect, but they're better. From the Twin Cities Gazette:

Brittany "Lane" Geldert says the district is "more livable now."

The Champlin Park High School sophomore, who identifies herself as bisexual, was one of the students represented in the lawsuit. Of those students, only she and Dylon Frei, an Anoka High sophomore, still attend school in Anoka-Hennepin.

Geldert said things feel different from the past, when she was regularly called anti-gay slurs and was harassed because she was a girl more interested in the rock band Tool than in fashion.

"It's starting to change; not drastic, but it feels more like normal high school now," she said.

She said she hasn't been bullied once this year at Champlin Park, nor has she seen other LGBT students harassed.

Geldert said a friend was told by a teacher she couldn't kiss her girlfriend in the hallway because it would "confuse" other students, but the teen reported it and the district handled it "right away."

Tuesday marks the official one-year anniversary of the settlement, which required the school to train teachers on federal laws pertaining to LGBT people, remind them that they're required to report harassment and every school in the district now has an official in charge of monitoring bullying in all of its various forms. And for the next five years, the Justice Department's will be checking in to make sure the district stays on the straight and narrow when it comes to combating anti-LGBT attitudes.

Posted Mar. 3,2013 at 10:17 AM EST by in Bullying, Discrimination, Education, Minnesota, News | Permalink | Comments (2)


Nobel Peace Prize Winner Lech Walesa Wants Gays 'Behind A Wall'

LechWalesaHas Lech Walesa completely tarnished his image as a peacemaker?

Walesa, the union organizer who became Poland's first democratic president in 1989, shocked fans and foes alike by saying last week that gay people should basically stop trying to be involved in the democratic process and go back to the proverbial kitchen, or, to be more precise, "behind a wall," especially in Parliament, because "a minority should not impose itself on the majority."

From ABC News:

Walesa said in a television interview on Friday that he believes gays have no right to sit on the front benches in Parliament and, if represented at all, should sit in the back, "and even behind a wall."

"They have to know that they are a minority and must adjust to smaller things. And not rise to the greatest heights, the greatest hours, the greatest provocations, spoiling things for the others and taking (what they want) from the majority," he told the private broadcaster TVN during a discussion of gay rights.

"I don't agree to this and I will never agree to it."

"A minority should not impose itself on the majority," Walesa said.


Obviously many people are outraged over the Nobel Peace prize winner's remarks, but the most concise criticism may come from liberal Polish politician Jerzy Wenderlich, "It was the statement of a troglodyte."

"From a human point of view his language was appalling," Wenderlich said of the devote Catholic's comments. "Now nobody in their right mind will invite Lech Walesa as a moral authority, knowing what he said."

But most people also know that Walesa's labor past doesn't mean he's progressive. He did, after all, supported Mitt Romney during the last election, and was pretty chummy with Ronald Reagan, who was of course no friend of friends of Dorothy.

(Image via Christofer C. Dierdorff.)

Posted Mar. 3,2013 at 8:15 AM EST by in Mitt Romney, News, Poland, Ronald Reagan | Permalink | Comments (72)



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