Discrimination Hub




Gay Couple Kicked Off London Bus After Being Told They Weren't 'Real Men' For Kissing

89

Transport for London has launched an investigation into a complaint made by a gay couple claiming they were thrown off a bus and berated by the homophobic driver for sharing a kiss.

Jack James, 23, and his partner were on board the number 89 bus when the incident occurred back in August, the London Evening Standard reports

Mr James, an events coordinator who lives in Greenwich said: “We were chatting away when my partner gave me a peck on the lips.

“The bus driver shouted ‘Oi you two don’t do that on my f****** bus or you can get off, I don’t want to watch that.”

He said that initially they thought the driver could not be speaking to them.

He added: “When the bus stopped at our stop I walked up to the driver and politely asked the driver if he was talking to us.

“His reply was ‘Yes, it’s my bus it is my rules and I don’t want to watch that, it’s disgusting, get off the bus’.

“Once we got off the bus we were fuming and I was shaking. The bus stopped again and he shouted  and told us we were not real men and we should f*** off.”

Said TfL's Head of Bus Operations Ken Davidson:

All customers have the right to use our services without fear of being abused and offensive behaviour is completely unacceptable.  We would like to reassure Mr James that this matter is being taken very seriously and that a thorough investigation is being conducted by Go Ahead.

The news comes less than a week after hundreds of protesters flooded a Sainsbury's supermarket in Brighton, UK  for a "big consensual kiss-in" to protest the treatment of a lesbian couple told to by a security guard to stop their "disgusting" kissing. 


Coeur d'Alene, Idaho Wedding Chapel Files Lawsuit Against City After Refusing to Perform Gay Marriages

Hitchingpost

The owners of a wedding chapel in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho have filed a lawsuit claiming the city's ordinance prohibiting discrimination against gays and lesbians is unconstitutionally forcing them to violate their religious beliefs by performing same-sex marriages. 

Hitching Post owners Donald and Evelyn Knapp, who are being represented by the anti-gay Christian litigation group Alliance Defending Freedom, claim that performing a gay wedding ceremony would force them to "condone, promote and even consecrate somehting forbidden by their religious beliefs and ordination vows."

The Spokesman-Review reports:

KnappAccording to the lawsuit, a man called the business Friday to ask about a same-sex wedding ceremony and was turned down. The Knapps are now asking for a temporary restraining order against the city to stop it from enforcing the ordinance. Violation of the ordinance is a misdemeanor punishable by fines and jail time.

“The Knapps are thus under a constant, coercive and substantial threat to violate their religious beliefs due to the risk that they will incur the penalties of jail time and criminal fines for declining to speak a message and perform a wedding service that contradicts their religious beliefs and ministerial vows,” the suit reads.

Marraige equality began in Idaho last Wednesday. 


Former University of New Mexico Student Files Lawsuit Claiming She Was Ostracized For Anti-gay Views

A former University of New Mexico student who claims she was shunned by school officials for making anti-gay remarks in a class paper can proceed with her First Amendment lawsuit against the school, a federal judge ruled late last month.  

The Albuquerque Journal reports:

UnmChief U.S. District Judge M. Christina Armijo denied UNM’s motion to dismiss the case, rejecting the argument that restrictions the university placed on the student were “reasonably related to legitimate pedagogic concerns.”

Monica Pompeo filed the suit last year, claiming UNM acted improperly when she was kicked out of [professor Caroline Hinkley's] class for describing lesbianism as perverse in a critique of a lesbian romance film. [...]

After Hinkley graded the critiques, she advised Pompeo to pick up her paper from the cinematic arts office and “ponder the responses” she had written on Pompeo’s paper.

Those responses included a comment that the critique was “inflammatory and offensive.” She also blasted Pompeo’s view that a lesbian character in the film had a “perverse attraction to the same sex” and a “barren womb.”

The lawsuit alleges Hinkley violated her own syllabus, which called for “open minds” to examine “representations of a plethora of genders and sexualities.” Instead, Pompeo says, Hinkley accused her of resorting to “hate speech” and refused to grade her paper. The professor also made it clear that it would be in Pompeo’s best interests not to return to the class, Pompeo alleges.

The Associated Press adds:

Armijo's ruling questioned whether a "university can have a legitimate pedagogical interest in inviting students to engage in `incendiary' and provocative speech on a topic and then punishing a student because he or she did just that."

"Simply because Plaintiff expressed views about homosexuality that some people may deem offensive does not derive her views of First Amendment protection," the judge wrote.


Mike Huckabee Wants to Send Houston Mayor 'Thousands' of Bibles to Stop Her 'Political Genocide' Against Christians: VIDEO

Huckabee

Continuing the right-wing uproar over Houston's subpoena of local anti-gay pastors tied to a lawsuit against the city's LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination ordinance, Mike Huckabee directed "every pastor in America" to send their sermons to mayor Annise Parker and every viewer to send her a Bible. 

Said Huckabee on his Fox News program:

The Houston case reminds us how rapidly our country is being taken over by intolerant despots who will unleash a form of political genocide against Christians who still cling to their Bibles and refuse to bow their knee to the false gods of hate and religious bigotry. The Houston mayor and her ilk, like mayors in Chicago and Boston who tried to prevent businesses opening in their city because the business owners were bible believing Christians, well she needs to apologize and start respecting all citizens - or at least have the integrity to resign. They shouldn't expect taxpayers to fund hate-filled, gestapo-like tactics to openly attempt ot shut down the free exercise of religion and attempt to establish a religion of godless secularism. 

Watch Huckabee's rant and call to arms, AFTER THE JUMP...

[h/t The Daily Signal]

Continue reading "Mike Huckabee Wants to Send Houston Mayor 'Thousands' of Bibles to Stop Her 'Political Genocide' Against Christians: VIDEO" »


With Gay Marriage Pushing Forward, Religious Conservatives Turn Attention to 'Religious Exemption' Bills

B3bpkfhtj9z3errtvn8uWith the battle against gay marriage losing ground throughout the country, some religious conservatives are shifting their attention to "religious exemption" laws.

The post-Hobby Lobby ENDA is wide open to laws like Mississippi's, or Arizona's (ultimately vetoed) bill, which allow for the denial of service to people, if it's based on religion (so, based on sexual orientation).

The AP reports

Sweeping carve-outs for faith-affiliated adoption agencies or individual wedding vendors will be an uphill battle. Public attitudes against exceptions have hardened, and efforts by faith groups in states where courts, not lawmakers, recognized same-sex unions have had little success.

Unfortunately, this may hold less true in some places. The AP article continues with a quote from Robin Fretwell Wilson, a legal specialist from the University of Illinois. She says:

Some of the states are so red — think South Carolina — that the legislature can likely lock down all kinds of religious liberty protections, even those we have not yet seen adopted anywhere, like protection for the small mom-and-pop wedding professionals, simply because they have the votes of like-minded colleagues.

Another example of Hobby Lobby-related problems presented by the article is that of Utah Republican State Representative Jacob Anderegg (pictured). The senator plans to come back to a bill he had held off on introducing for the last two years, while the fight on gay marriage was in full swing. Senator Anderegg's bill would allow clergy and justices of the peace to refuse particpation in same-sex weddings.

Said Anderegg: The bill reasserts and re-establishes fundamental principles: I have a religious objection. You can’t force me or compel me to do it." 


Right-Wing Freaks Out Over Houston's Subpoena of Pastors' Role in City's Equal Rights Ordinance Case: VIDEOS

Rightwing

Back in August we reported that anti-gay activists in Houston had failed in their efforts to collect enough signatures for a ballot measure that would place Houston's LGBT-inclusive Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO) up for a public referendum. The activists (which included local pastors) proceeded to sue the city over the rejection of signatures and a court date was set for January 2015. 

Then, earlier this week, it was revealed city attorneys had subpoenaed local pastors tied to the lawsuit for "all speeches, presentations, or sermons related to HERO, the Petition, Mayor Annise Parker, homosexuality, or gender identity prepared by, delivered by, revised by, or approved by you or in your possession."

Parker, for her part, acknowledged the subpoenas were too broad and clarified they were issued by outside attorneys working for the city pro bono, New York reports:

ParkerThey were looking into what instructions pastors gave out to those collecting signatures for a referendum on the non-discrimination law. (What exactly the pastors said, and what the collectors knew about the rules, is one of the key issues in pending litigation around whether opponents of the law gathered enough signatures for a referendum.)

"There's no question, the wording was overly broad. But I also think there was some deliberate misinterpretation on the other side," Parker said at a press conference Wednesday. "The goal is to find out if there were specific instructions given on how the petitions should be accurately filled out. It's not about, 'What did you preach on last Sunday?'" 

As you can imagine, right-wing commentators pounced on the story as the latest example of religious liberties being crushed under the supposed tyranny of LGBT equality. 

Check out their crazed, knee-jerk reactions, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Right-Wing Freaks Out Over Houston's Subpoena of Pastors' Role in City's Equal Rights Ordinance Case: VIDEOS" »


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