Oregon Hub




National Organization for Marriage Continues Its Fight Against Oregon's Pro-Gay Marriage Ruling

OregonFollowing U.S. District Court Judge Michael McShane's ruling back in May striking down Oregon's ban on gay marriage, the National Organization for Marriage asked the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to halt the decision. Two weeks ago, a three judge panel of the Ninth Circuit denied NOM its request, leading to the anti-gay organization to now ask the full Ninth Circuit Court to reconsider the decision.

The Oregonian reports:

NOM unsuccessfully sought to gain standing to appeal McShane's decision. But McShane denied the group's attempt to intervene in the case and NOM has so far failed to find any success on appeal. 

In its latest petition, NOM said the lack of an opposing party in the Oregon litigation is part of a dangerous trend  "threatening the very adversarial nature of our system of justice."

In February, Oregon's Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum announced she would no longer defend the state's gay marriage ban in court. 


GOP Senate Candidate From Oregon To Run Pro-Marriage Equality Ad: VIDEO

MonicaWehby

Monica Wehby (above left) is proving to be a rare bird in the GOP senate race. The Oregon candidate, battling against incumbent Jeff Merkley (D), is set to air a television ad touting her pro-gay marriage stance. Not only is her position surprising, but the ad also stars one of the plaintiffs from the case which struck down Oregon's ban, Ben West (above right).

Mediaite reports:

“Marrying my husband was the happiest day of my life,” West says in the ad. “I was proud of Oregon and our country. But there’s a lot of work left to do. Whether it’s standing up for equality or for the unemployed or for the next generation, we need leaders who have the courage to do what’s right. That’s why I support Monica Wehby. I know she’ll fight for every Oregon family, including mine.”

Kudos to Wehby! The probability of her winning the race is slim as she currently trails Merkley in the polls by 13 points, but the blatantly supportive message is admirable to say the least.

Check out the campaign ad, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "GOP Senate Candidate From Oregon To Run Pro-Marriage Equality Ad: VIDEO" »


Neighbors Defend Gay Oregon Grandmother Harassed by Property Manager, Hate Graffiti: VIDEO

Diedyke

A grandmother in Rainier, Oregon had a hateful gay slur painted on the side of her home and says it's just the latest incident of targeted harassment she has faced since the park she lives in hired a new property manager.

GrandmotherKOIN reports that Melanie Powell has been living out and proud (with a rainbow flag outside her home) at the same trailer park for 25 years without any trouble but when a new property manager was hired she suddenly felt threatened.

Powell began receiving repair notices for her roof, porch, and paint, and was subjected to harassment from the new manager Maureena Schmaing, KOIN adds:

“I’m tired of being yelled at, screamed at, vulgar language, being accused of doing stuff we are not doing,” said Powell.

Several of Powell’s neighbors, including William Pierce, said they haven’t had any problems with the new property manager and that all focus seems to be on Powell. Neighbors believe they may be targeting Powell because she is gay.

Manager“I’ve watched it enough where I had to come down here myself and stop the manager from yelling at her the way she was,” said Pierce.

When confronted, the park’s manager...denied she was targeting Powell because of her sexual orientation. “I’m a landlord. I follow the Manufacturing Housing Oregon Law, and I follow all the Title 10 Law with any park site I manage,” said Schmaing.

It's unclear who is behind the hateful graffiti.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Neighbors Defend Gay Oregon Grandmother Harassed by Property Manager, Hate Graffiti: VIDEO" »


Mills College Becomes First All-Women's School to Welcome Transgender Students

Mills hall

Yesterday, Mills College in Oakland, California, became the first all-women’s college in the U.S. to openly welcome transgender and gender nonconforming students, reports Think Progress.

Last December, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a bill providing unprecedented protections for transgender students in the state.

Mills College is one of 119 single-sex universities across the U.S., 48 of which are women’s colleges.

According to Brian O’Rourke, vice president of enrollment and admissions, about three to five of the college’s 1,000 undergraduates identify as transgender or gender non-conforming every year.

The new policy allows for numerous ways to accommodate transgender students while still maintaining an identity as a women’s college:

  • The college welcome any student who self-identifies as a woman, regardless of what sex she was assigned at birth.

  • Applicants “who do not fit into the gender binary” are welcome provided they were assigned “female” at birth.

  • Female students who enroll but later identify as a man may stay and graduate.

  • The policy does not apply to undergraduate students who were assigned “female” at birth but who already legally identify as a man.

Last month we reported that George Fox University in Oregon and The California Baptist University continue to legally discriminate against transgender students.  Under exemptions, George Fox University can legally discriminate against a transgender student who identifies as a man and was refused permission to reside in housing for male students.  In The California Baptist University case, a scholarship student was expelled by the university on the basis of “fraud” after she appeared on a reality television program to discuss her transgender identity.


9th Circuit Denies NOM Request To Halt Gay Marriages In Oregon: READ

OregonThe 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has blocked a request from the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) to halt gay marriages in Oregon, The Oregonian reports:

The action comes in the wake of the May 19 decision by U.S. District Court Judge Michael McShane in Eugene to strike down Oregon's ban on same-sex marriage. Voters in 2004 passed an amendment to the state constitution, Measure 36, defining marriage as between one man and one woman.

Supporters of same-sex marriage applauded Wednesday's decision.

"We're thrilled by the news but not surprised at all," said Jeana Frazzini, executive director of Basic Rights Oregon. "There was never any merit to their proposal and they've been denied now at every turn."

Frazzini read the court's decision and called it "decisive."

NOM can now either appeal its case to the full 9th Circuit (a three judge panel issued today's decision) or the U.S. Supreme Court. The Court previously denied a request from NOM to get involved in the case back in June. Should NOM appeal to the Supreme Court, the justices would have another chance to intervene. 

Read the 9th Circuit's ruling for yourself, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "9th Circuit Denies NOM Request To Halt Gay Marriages In Oregon: READ" »


Religious University Requires Sex Reassignment Surgery For Trans Students Seeking Single-Sex Dorm

G_fox

Oregon’s George Fox University — the Christian school that used a Title IX religious exemption to bar a trans male student from residing in a men’s dormitory — has revised its policy to let trans students live in the dorms as long as they have undergone sex reassignment surgery.

Noting that the university’s student health plan excludes sex reassignment surgery, Zack Ford from Think Progress points out the other shortcomings of George Fox’s “compromise”:

… many transgender people choose not undergo surgical changes to their bodies, either because they cannot afford it, because they do not wish to sacrifice their reproductive ability, or because they simply do not feel it is a necessary step to realize their gender identities. The National Transgender Discrimination Survey found that at most, a quarter of trans people had already had some form of genital surgery, though many more wanted to someday. In turn, the World Health Organization recently condemned any policy that requires transgender people to undergo sterilizing surgery in order to obtain legal recognition…

Ford has also noted that the school orginally offered to house the student in a single apartment near campus, and that the school's policy defines "common residence halls" as "single-sex, defined anatomically." Makes you wonder if they're checking the bust-size and genitals of everyone who applies.

One year ago, the U.S. Department of Education stated that Title XI granted trans students access to accommodations like bathrooms, locker rooms and dorms. However, the religious exemption allows schools like George Fox University and the Cal Baptist nursing school to discriminate against and even expel trans students under the guise of “religious beliefs.”


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