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Latino Labor Group Stands Up To Catholic Church, Refuses To Cut Ties With LGBT-Friendly Allies

Voz

The Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) has threatened to cut funding to a Latino workers rights organization if it refuses to cut ties with other groups that support marriage equality, reports Think Progress.

Voz, which primarily helps Latino immigrants find work in Portland, Oregon, does not take a position on marriage equality. However, when faced with the decision to end it’s association with Latino rights group the National Council of La Raza or lose $75,000 of it’s $310,000 annual budget, Voz leaders “self-disqualified” the group by voting to continue the affiliation.

The CCHD is subject to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, a longtime opponent of marriage equality.

In a press release, Romeo Sosa, Executive Director of Voz, wrote:

“CCHD forced the question of Marriage Equality into the grant process. Ultimately we are an organization that does not discriminate; many of us know people who are gay, lesbian and transgender. They are our aunts and uncles, nephews and nieces, friends, co-workers and neighbors.”

However, other local organizations are now rushing in to support Voz. Spokespeople from the Oregon AFL-CIO and Basic Rights Oregon hosted a news conference on Wednesday to declare their solidarity with Voz, and Basic Rights Oregon has already received nearly $10,000 in pledges from pro-LGBT organizations.

Call To Action, a Catholic social justice group, has launched an online Groundswell petition asking the CCHD to “stop bullying social justice organizations with litmus tests over LGBT equality.”

The CCHD’s decision is seen by some as hypocritical given that Catholic groups are currently lobbying President Barack Obama for exemptions from a pending executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT employees.


Wiki Loves Pride Edit-A-Thons Improve LGBT Content On Wikipedia

Wikimedia lgbt

Last month, Wikipedia launched a series of Wiki Loves Pride edit-a-thons to improve LGBT-related content on various Wikimedia projects.

The edit-a-thons aim to increase “the number of people and perspectives contributing to LGBT information on the site, as well as encouraging institutions to add their authority information, research and images to the public domain.”

Edit-a-thons have already taken place in Philadelphia, New York City, Washington, D.C., and Portland, Oregon.  Future edit-a-thons are planned for Atlanta and Houston and for Bangalore and Delhi, India.


Former Exodus International Chairman John Paulk Opens Up About New Life

Chef_John_2

John Paulk, former leader of Focus on the Family's 'Love Won Out' 'ex-gay' ministry and poster child of the now defunct “ex-gay” organization Exodus International, has opened up about his post-Exodus life in Portland. Since his departure from public life Paul has disavowed the efficacy and validity of “reparative therapy”.

“Reparative therapy is, by definition, based on the notion that something is “broken” in one’s identity, needing repair.” Paulk explained to Politico. “I wanted my homosexuality to change, but the truth is: For all my public rhetoric, I was never one bit less gay.”

Paulk made headlines in the fall of 2000 after being identified at Mr. P’s, a Washington D.C. gay bar, while travelling on a Focus on The Family speaking tour. Paulk would go on to resign from Focus on The Family in 2003.

“Behind closed doors, many of us in the “ex-gay” leadership at Focus on the Family would even admit this to each other,” Said Paulk. “We know our orientation hasn’t really changed. What has changed is our behavior. Our way of life. How we see ourselves. Our sexuality has not changed.”

Since moving to Oregon with his wife and children, Paulk has rebooted his life as a chef, founding a catering business in 2005 and making frequent appearances on local Portland radio and television programs. Despite the success he’s found in his new life Portland, a famously gay-friendly city, has confronted Paul about his past.

“I was confronted by a man in a coffee shop who was angry and had tears in his eyes,” Paulk recalled. “Up until then I hadn’t really seen or understood a lot of the pain I had been causing in my two decades as an ex-gay activist. That encounter was a beginning.”


Gay Marriage Proposal Of The Day: Ryan And Clayton

Powell's, the largest independent bookstore in the world (located in Portland, OR), became the site of an adorable same-sex marriage proposal this week. Towleroad reader Clayton told us that he thought he was going to a friend's book signing when, lo and behold, now-fiance Ryan got down on one knee.

Powell's tweeted this Instagram picture with the caption: "Today's best thing. #Repost from @malexonthego --- It was so special getting to witness Ryan propose to Clayton. I love love! #hesaidyes."

PowellsProposal

Congrats to Ryan and Clayton! 


Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme Plays a 'Disappointing Gay' on 'Portlandia': VIDEO

Portlandia

Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme guest stars on Portlandia. Carrie's brother stops by to introduce his boyfriend and Fred and Carrie are disappointed to learn that they don't live up to stereotypes.

IFC adds:

He doesn’t dabble in home decorating, he doesn’t give unsolicited fashion advice, and he and his boyfriend are total slobs. In fact, they like to do Jagerbombs for breakfast instead of drinking heart-healthy kale smoothies.

Check out a clip, AFTER THE JUMP...

UPDATE: Tyler Coates thinks the clip seems very familiar...

Continue reading "Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme Plays a 'Disappointing Gay' on 'Portlandia': VIDEO" »


Portland Teens Carve Swastika into Schoolmate's Forehead, Say He Called Someone 'Gay': VIDEO

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Dustyn Murrain (above) experienced a harrowing ordeal last week when he was attacked and tortured in a shed by four peers, two of whom he claimed as friends. Murrain was beaten in the head with a crowbar, received shots to the chest and groin with a BB-gun, and then had a swastika carved into his forehead, likely by Blue Kalmbach, a student who claims that Murrain bullied them (by calling one of them 'gay') first.

TeensDustyn's mother, Kelli Murrain, has said that whether her son bullied the four teens or not--she does not believe that he did--his verbal harassment should never have constituted such extreme physical backlash.

KATU.com reports:

"I've been called lots of names and I never went out and shot anybody or beat them in the head with a crowbar," [Kelli Murrain] said.

Murrain says her son had emergency surgery Monday night for the BB shot that went through his groin area. He has staples in his head from getting hit with a crowbar...
 
It's a cold indifference Kelli Murrain finds difficult to fathom.
 
"These kids threw away their lives and they don't even get it," she said. "They don't understand what they did. They're still making excuses. It's like OK ... maybe you'll get it when you're sitting in jail."
 
Another student, Curtis Floyd Wilkinson from David Douglas High School, came forward to speak out against Kalmbach as well, claiming that he was friends with Kalmbach until he began to bully him by kicking the backs of his legs while walking down the school hallway. Wilkinson spent time in a psychiatric ward for severe depression, and he links Kalmback to that stint.
 
"The bullying thing at school can get really really bad and people should probably know about it. This should not go unnoticed and should really be looked at," Wilkinson said.
 
Murrain, still rattled about his experience, will have both mental and physical scars to remind him of his torture.
 
"Why they would carve a swastika in his forehead? It's something he'll never forget, if the scar doesn't go away; every time he looks in the mirror he's going to be reminded of what happened to him," [his mom] said.

Watch news coverage of the horrific story, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Portland Teens Carve Swastika into Schoolmate's Forehead, Say He Called Someone 'Gay': VIDEO" »


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