Roger Gorley was arrested at the Research Medical Center in Kansas City, Missouri on Tuesday after he refused to leave the bedside of his sick partner Allen, WDAF reports:
He says when he got there, a member of Allen’s family asked him to leave. When Gorley refused, he says hospital security forcibly removed him from the property and put him in handcuffs.
“I was not recognized as being the husband, I wasn’t recognized as being the partner,” Gorley said.
While not legally recognized as a couple in Missouri, Gorley says he and his partner Allen have been in a civil union for nearly five years, and make medical decisions for each other. He says the nurse refused to verify they also share joint Power of Attorney.
“She didn’t even bother to go look it up to check into it,” Gorley said. “He’s been at the psychiatric unit part several times.”
The hospital released this statement, saying it does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation:
We believe involving the family is an important part of the patient care process. And, the patient`s needs are always our first priority. When anyone becomes disruptive to providing the necessary patient care, we involve our security team to help calm the situation and to protect our patients and staff. If the situation continues to escalate, we have no choice but to request police assistance.
Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...
Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) is the latest lawmaker to come around on the issue of marriage equality, in a Tumblr post this evening:
The question of marriage equality is a great American debate. Many people, some with strong religious faith, believe that marriage can only exist between a man and a woman. Other people, many of whom also have strong religious faith, believe that our country should not limit the commitment of marriage to some, but rather all Americans, gay and straight should be allowed to fully participate in the most basic of family values.
I have come to the conclusion that our government should not limit the right to marry based on who you love. While churches should never be required to conduct marriages outside of their religious beliefs, neither should the government tell people who they have a right to marry.
My views on this subject have changed over time, but as many of my gay and lesbian friends, colleagues and staff embrace long term committed relationships, I find myself unable to look them in the eye without honestly confronting this uncomfortable inequality. Supporting marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples is simply the right thing to do for our country, a country founded on the principals of liberty and equality.
Good people disagree with me. On the other hand, my children have a hard time understanding why this is even controversial. I think history will agree with my children.
In a Politico article published on Thursday, McCaskill suggested that her views were evolving. McCaskill had previously expressed support for civil unions and opposed Missouri's 2004 constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
Caylend Childs, a seventh grader at Mason Clark Middle School in East St. Louis, Illinois, spent all day with the word "fag" written on his neck because a bully had written it there, his mother told KTVI News.
Said Ruth Childs: "He was resting his head on his desk and a boy wrote it on his neck. I saw it when he got home and called the school after taking a picture of it. He did not know it was there, but all the kids were laughing at him. It was written in permanent marker."
School officials confirmed the incident did happen as well as another one for which students were discipline.
Said Childs: "They kicked in the stall door and kicked Caylend in the back. Urine got all over him."
Childs says that her son no longer wants to go to school. Is anyone surprised?
Watch KTVI's interview with Caylend and his mother, AFTER THE JUMP...
Earlier today I posted about Stacy Dawson, a gay Missouri teen who was told he couldn't attend his prom with a male date. Some good news to report. The district superintendent has said Dawson, or any gay teen, may bring a same-sex date, the line forbidding it has been removed from the rule book, and the school says it was not originally put there to ban gay students, NBC News reports:
"I found out why the stipulation in the student handbook was originally put in there, and it's rather innocent, to be honest," Alvin McFerren, Scott County Central School District superintendent, said. "This was during a time 10-15 years ago that the previous administration was having issues with some of the students trying to come in on either the single rate or the couple rate. They implemented that to make sure they couldn't circumvent the rates that students were supposed to pay as they entered into our dances."
McFerren said Dawson will be allowed to go to prom with his boyfriend.
"It was never intended to be a discriminatory thing," he said. "We want an educational environment for all of our kids and we're not ever going to discriminate as to whether or not the board has the policy and we don't do that based on sexual orientation. Period."
Happy prom, everyone.
UPDATE: School reverses, story here.
Another discriminatory school situation, this time in Scott County, Missouri, where a senior high school student is not being allowed to bring a male date to the prom, KFVS reports:
Dawson asked Scott County Central administrators if he could bring his same-sex date to the senior prom.
"The school board says since it was in the handbook it could be awhile before it was changed, and I probably would not be able to bring my date," said Dawson.
The handbook states, "High School students will be permitted to invite one guest, girls invite boys and boys invite girls."
"We looked at the policy and realized it was blatantly unconstitutional," said Alesdair Ittelson. Ittelson is a staff attorney for the civil rights group Southern Poverty Law Center. Ittelson sent a letter to Scott County Central School District Officials requesting them to change the handbook.
"It tells LGBT students that they don't deserve the same rights as their heterosexual peers, and that's not right and that's not constitutional," said Ittelson.
Watch the KFVS report, AFTER THE JUMP...