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College Student Expelled For Being Gay, Told to Pay Back Scholarship

GraceA college student in Nebraska is fighting to keep thousands of dollars in scholarship funds after revelations about her past relationship with another woman resulted in her expulsion from Grace University, a small Bible college in Omaha.

Danielle Powell says that Grace University is demanding she cover over $6,000 in scholarships she received during her undergraduate career. After eight months of being denied a transcript transfer because of the outstanding balance, making it impossible to transfer to another university, Powell has started a Change.org petition to demand that Grace University forgive the debt and allow her to transfer.

"I don't think a lot of people are aware of the fact that you legally can be kicked out of a school in 2013 for being gay," Powell said. "Yes, this is a legal, financial petition, technically speaking, but there's a lot of morals and social justice tied into it that is getting I think some necessary exposure."

After word of Powell's previous relationship with another woman worked its way up to top administrators, the two women were brought to campus to attend a judiciary hearing in which they were questioned separately about their relationship and their remorse. Powell was initially suspended and told she could re-enroll for her final semester if she agreed to a restoration program involving mandatory church attendance, meetings with counselors and mentors, and keeping in touch with a dean. Powell began the program, but was notified later that the administration had decided on expulsion instead. 

Most Bible colleges, including Grace University, require students to sign a statement of faith and conduct when they enroll that usually includes rules against "sexually immoral behavior, including premarital sex, adultery, and homosexual acts."


News: Scott Thorson, Robbie Rogers, England, Apple

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Watch a clip of Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal from their upcoming film, Prisoners.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d The owner of the Bunny Ranch says he bailed Liberace's former lover, Scott Thorson, out of jail because the latter wasn't getting proper treatment for his cancer.

Rr6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Robbie Rogers says he really missed soccer after he retired from the sport: "'There was a period after leaving England 'where I thought, 'OK, I'm done with this.' I'm going to really miss it but I felt like it was going to be really difficult to come back,' Rogers says. 'But I just really missed it too much.'"

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d UK equalities minister says marriage equality cannot be traded for tax breaks: "While a transferable tax allowance 'may well' be brought in during the current parliament, the two issues of tax breaks and same-sex marriage were 'very different things,' she said. 'This [same-sex marriage] is about stopping discrimination and allowing a very large and significant group of people to enter into an institution that most of us think is a very valuable one. That is really how I see it.'"

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Apple might introduce iRadio next week: "Apple’s service, a Pandora-like feature that would tailor streams of music to each user’s taste, has been planned since at least last summer."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d RIP All in the Family's Jean Stapleton who has passed away at 90.

England6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Bishops in England urged to avoid Tuesday's marriage vote: "They fear that a large bloc of clerics turning up to vote down the bill could rebound on the Church, reopening questions over the right of bishops to sit in the Lords and even raise the prospect of disestablishment."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d It appears that former Facebook president Sean Parker was wed in a forest.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Powerful images from the demonstrations in Istanbul.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Channing Tatum has become a first-time dad.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Nebraska bill would change current ban on gay foster parents: "Lawmakers will debate a bill next year that would allow gay and lesbian couples to serve as foster parents if they are related to the child or have a well-established relationship."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Angelina Jolie makes her first post-surgery public appearance at the premiere of Brad Pitt's new movie, World War Z.


Nebraska Lesbian Sentenced for Faking Horrific Hate Crime: VIDEO

Rogers

Charlie Rogers, the Lincoln, Nebraska lesbian who was found guilty of faking a hate crime for claiming she was attacked by three men who broke into her home and carved "dyke" into her stomach before setting her house ablaze, was sentenced to a week in jail and two years on probation by a Lancaster County judge yesterday.

The Journal Star reports:

Lancaster County Judge Gale Pokorny on Thursday morning also ordered the 34-year-old to do 250 hours of community service for lying to police when she told investigators three men broke into her house, tied her up, carved anti-gay slurs into her skin and tried to light the house on fire.

“The evidence is overwhelming that Charlie Rogers’ narrative of July 22, 2012, was an incredible and outrageous lie the second it passed her lips,” Pokorny said.

Rogers will start her jail sentence April 29. She could do another 90 days behind bars in 2015 if she does not complete probation. Pokorny also ordered her to take a comprehensive psychiatric exam and give her probation officer access to all her medical records.

Rogers had faced up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

Video of Rogers' sentencing, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Nebraska Lesbian Sentenced for Faking Horrific Hate Crime: VIDEO" »


Petition Drive to Repeal Omaha's LGBT Non-Discrimination Ordinance Fails

Right-wing religious groups have failed in their petition drive efforts to repeal Omaha, Nebraska's LGBT non-discrimination ordinance, the World-Herald reports:

City_omahaA church-led effort to repeal the ordinance did not gather enough signatures in time to launch a referendum immediately, organizers said Thursday.

The Omaha Liberty Project, sponsor of the petition effort, needed to submit roughly 11,400 valid resident signatures to the city today to potentially force a vote in May's general election.

The group's volunteer petition circulators led months of signature gathering and community-organizing efforts, its leader said, but didn't collect enough signatures to account for potentially ineligible entries. The group has already missed a deadline to place the issue on the primary ballot.

Organizers blame their failure on getting a late start, lack of education on the issue, and not public opinion.


Nebraska Woman Found Guilty of Faking Anti-Gay Hate Crime

Rogers

Charlie Rogers, the Lincoln, Nebraska lesbian who claimed she was attacked by three men who broke into her home and carved "dyke" into her stomach before setting her house ablaze pleaded no contest and was found guilty, the AP reports:

Charlie Rogers entered the plea Monday afternoon in Lancaster County Court and was found guilty of the misdemeanor charge of false reporting. Lancaster County Judge Gale Pokorny ordered sentencing for Feb. 14.

Rogers also claimed the men spray-painted slurs on her walls. Her original claims prompted hundreds of people to gather for anti-hate rallies. The police later uncovered overwhelming evidence that she had lied.

Rogers faces a maximum one year jail term.


News: Justices, Aerosols, Gaza, 'Impeach Obama' Robo-Calls

1NewsIcon Did the 2012 election really mark the end of political homophobia and transphobia?

1NewsIcon WainwrightgapRufus Wainwright and husband Jörn Weisbrodt star as "married love" in Gap's new ad campaign, "Love Comes In Every Shade." "This campaign celebrates these diverse, optimistic views on family and the many forms love can take," said Gap CMO Seth Farbman.

1NewsIcon The Film Experience on the ins and outs Alexander Skarsgård starring as Tarzan: "Though I think the discovery themes of the Tarzan franchise warrant a more 'who is that?' choice, Skarsgård deserves more big screen opportunities (I was sad when he missed out on Thor since he's the closest thing that showbiz has to a Norse God) and his Swedishness and comfort with nudity are surely good signs for the exotic vine swinger."

1NewsIcon Mark Guenther, Executive Director of CAGLCC (Capital Area Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce), was arrested and charged with unlawful entry earlier this month after a male neighbor woke up to find Guenther standing over him.

1NewsIcon Chris Geidner at BuzzFeed spoke with a number of Supreme Court experts, many of whom named the same four people as potential Supreme Court justice nominees: Kamala Harris, Pam Karlan, Goodwin Liu and Paul Watford, a judge who was named more than any other. Geidnder provides background on Watford: "A judge on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, Watford was named by more of the panel than anyone else — and is by far the least well-known possibility of the four. Nominated to the appeals court by Obama in 2011, the Senate confirmed Watford in May — with support from nine Republicans, including Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham."

1NewsIcon Three South African men have been arrested for at least one of eight seemingly connected anti-gay murders.

Gazarocket1NewsIcon Three people were killed and eleven were injured during a series of rocket attacks on Israel, including hits against Tel Aviv, from the Gaza Strip, which Israel has also been hitting with artillery as tensions between the Israelis and Palestinians flare up.

1NewsIcon Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson and fiance Justin Mikita hosted friends, family and supporters at the launch of Tie the Knot, a charity which donates sales from bow ties to marriage equality causes.

1NewsIcon Robert DeNiro and Jay-Z are in a fight over phone etiquette.

1NewsIcon Gwyneth Paltrow, the writer.

1NewsIcon This is Sheldon Stephens, the man who claimed Elmo voice Kevin Clash had sex with him when he was only 16 and then took it back. [Update: link fixed!]

1NewsIcon The Conservative Majority Fund is running a robo-call calling for an "Impeach Obama" movement: "We suspect that Obama is guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors and that there may be grounds for impeachment as is laid out in the Constitution. Further, he may not even be a US citizen—because nobody, I mean no one, has seen an actual physical copy of his birth certificate! Impeachment is our only option."

Foxcoverage1NewsIcon Are you absolutely, positively shocked to hear that Fox News barely mentioned gay marriage wins and out Sen-elect Tammy Baldwin following this month's elections?

1NewsIcon Male model Rob Wilson got started on The Price Is Right.

1NewsIcon The City Council in Grand Island, Nebraska, overturned the mayor's veto of employment protections for the city's LGBT staffers, but not for the entire city itself.

1NewsIcon Would you let Lindsay Lohan play with your look?

1NewsIcon This Tumblr is devoted to exposing racist tweeters and their faces!

1NewsIcon An explanation for the incredible picture below: "This simulation shows the various types of aerosols - particles and liquid droplets - suspended in the Earth's atmosphere. It was created using the Goddard Earth Observing System Model, a global atmospheric simulation designed at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The model aims to study the climate system."

NASA-AEROSOLS


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