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Wingnut Bob Marshall Introduces 'Unethical, Abusive And Dangerous' Anti-Gay Legislation in Virginia

6a00d8341c730253ef01b7c73089a3970b-800wiAnti-gay bigot and Virginia Republican delegate Bob Marshall has introduced new legislation that would allow for widespread discrimination against LGBT people in the state, reports LGBTQ Nation.

Marshall is no stranger to anti-gay policy making - in 2006, he co-authored Virginia’s constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage.

The new bill HB 1414 states that “a person shall not be required to perform, assist, consent to, or participate in any action or refrain from performing, assisting, consenting to, or participating in any action as a condition of obtaining or renewing a government-issued license, registration, or certificate where such condition would violate the religious or moral convictions of such person with respect to same-sex marriage or homosexual behavior.”

Greg Nevins of Lambda Legal, who fought the state’s ban on same-sex marriage last year, said a bill as broad in scope as HB 1414 would allow a doctor to refuse to prescribe HIV medication to a gay man, or a therapist to refuse counseling to an individual in a same-sex relationship.

He added that it “threatens the mental and physical health of Virginia residents...is unconstitutional...unethical, abusive and dangerous.”

Although the bill could pass both the Republican-majority House and Senate, openly gay delegate Mark Sickles said he believes Democratic governor Terry McAuliffe would veto the measure.

Last year, Marshall called for the impeachment of Attorney General Mark Herring over his refusal to defend the state’s ban on same-sex marriage in court.


Anti-Gay Former VA Governor Bob McDonnell Sentenced To Two Years For Corruption

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(Photo via Twitter)

Anti-gay former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell was sentenced Tuesday to two years in prison after being convicted in September on charges of corruption. While McDonnell had originally faced up to two decades in prison, the maximum possible sentence was reduced by Judge R. Spencer to between six-and-a-half and eight years. The New York Times reports:

For hour upon hour before sentence was passed, the court heard accounts of Mr. McDonnell’s good deeds, and the judge said they were a mitigating factor. But, he said: “A price must be paid. It breaks my heart.” 

Mr. McDonnell, who arrived in court with two of his daughters, looked on silently through the hours of testimony from friends and former associates. He was the last to address the court.

“I stand before you as a heartbroken and humbled man,” he said, as many supporters in the packed courtroom dabbed at their eyes with tissues.

Mr. McDonnell said his life in the governor’s mansion had become unbalanced. Now, he said, he will dedicate the rest of his life “newly to service.”

McDonnell’s wife was also convicted on corruption charges and still awaits sentencing. Mr. McDonnell, along with other members of the family, alleged it was Lady Macbeth who was to blame, having introduced Mr. McDonnell to Virginia businessman Jonnie R. Williams Sr. who eventually gave the couple “$120,000 in low-interest loans, paid for much of the wedding of their daughter Cailin McDonnell Young, bought a Rolex for the governor, picked up bills for golf outings and lent them his Ferrari.” However, Judge Spencer, perhaps making a biblical allusion, insisted that Mr. McDonnell still bore the blame for his crime:

Judge Spencer, referring to Mr. Williams, said Ms. McDonnell “may have let the serpent into the mansion.” But the governor, he said, let Mr. Williams into his financial affairs

Upon release, Mr. McDonnell will face two years of supervision. The prison term and the supervision are all well below the recommended sentencing guidelines, which could have put the former governor behind bars for up to 20 years, and less than the 78 months sought by the government.

“The Jonnie Williams of the world are a dime a dozen," Michael Dry, a lead prosecutor in the case, told the court. “Corrupt governors are not. But when we find one,” he said, the official must be brought to justice. When Mr. Dry left the courtroom, his face was twisted in anger. He declined to comment.

During his tenure as Governor McDonnell had been a vocal opponent of both gay adoption and providing protections for LGBT individuals based on their sexual orientation or gender identity


Hundreds Gather To Protest Virginia 'Ex-Gay' Billboard - VIDEO

Richmond

Hundreds of people gathered at the Gay Community Center of Richmond yesterday to show their support for the city’s LGBT community after a billboard supporting “ex-gay” therapy was erected in the Virginia city by anti-gay activist group Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays & Gays (PFOX), reports GAYRVA.com.

PfoxPFOX claimed that the billboard with the words “Nobody is born gay”, which was based on dodgy interpretations of two studies that purportedly deny the existence of a “gay gene”. 

Attending Sunday’s demonstration of support, Richmond resident and mother of two Terra Courtland said it was important for gay families to “show we’re just like everybody else, just trying to raise our kids and live here.”

Another resident, Jason Coast, who identified himself as a straight ally, said “if some of us are being discriminated against, then we all are.”

Following the erection of the billboard, which is set run through the holiday season, Virginia Del Patrick Hope released information about a bill he plans to bring before the 2015 General Assembly to combat ex-gay therapy on minors. The damaging practice has already been banned in New Jersey, California and Washington, D.C.

“Out and proud” gay model Kyle Roux has spoken of his shock at being used for the billboard.

Watch a report on the PFOX billboard, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Hundreds Gather To Protest Virginia 'Ex-Gay' Billboard - VIDEO" »


Model Featured on 'Ex Gay' Virginia Billboard Is Neither 'Ex-Gay' Nor a Twin: VIDEO

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Richmond, Virginia's new "Nobody Is Born Gay' sign from 'ex-gay' activist group Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays & Gays (PFOX) has drawn the ire of the model featured on the billboard, who says he's quite happy being gay and not actually a twin like the sign would have people believe. 

Richmond's WWBT reports:

RouxSpeaking via Skype, Kyle Roux said he was shocked his image was used. Especially since he calls himself an "out and proud" gay man. 

"I was obviously quite shocked, so that why I decided to send you guys an email saying hey, I'm that guy in that billboard," Roux said.

Roux hasn't thought about that photo shoot in nearly a decade. He says the pictures used on the billboard were part of a stock photo shoot he did. Roux signed away the rights and was told the pictures would be used in commercial and corporate ads and brochures. [...]

"It's actually quite a big thing that there is this kind of discrimination and borderline hate speech going on, you know," he said.

Roux says he's worried about teens struggling with their sexuality, and he hopes to empower others. 

DoyleChristian Doyle, a self-professed 'ex-gay' and former board member of PFOX also chimed in on the story, saying Roux is irrelevant to what the billboard is trying to accomplish.

"The issue isn't the photo on a the billboard, but the actual science." 

And by "actual science" Doyle presumably means "thoroughly discredited, pseudo-scientific soul poison"

Watch a segment of Roux's interview with WWBT, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Model Featured on 'Ex Gay' Virginia Billboard Is Neither 'Ex-Gay' Nor a Twin: VIDEO" »


'Ex-Gay' Organization Erects Billboard In Virginia Claiming 'Nobody Is Born Gay' - VIDEO

Pfox-billboard

A Virginia-based “ex-gay” activist group has erected a billboard in Richmond along a major state highway with the words “Nobody is born gay”, reports Huffington Post.

The group behind the billboard Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays & Gays (PFOX) has publicly supported the notion of “conversion therapy” or “reparative therapy” in the past, despite the fact that the harmful practice has been condemned by the American Psychological Association and banned in two states and Washington, D.C.

6a00d8341c730253ef0167618fb0b8970b-800wi

Bizarrely, PFOX says that the billboard aims to “increase others’ understanding and acceptance of the ex-gay community.”

The billboard refers to two studies that purportedly deny the existence of a “gay gene”. This interpretation of the study has been refuted by its main researcher.

In response to the billboard, Bill Harrison of the Richmond Gay Community said:

"We do not know why people are heterosexual. Maybe when we figure that out, we can determine why some people are not. What we do know is that this type of therapy has caused many people to commit suicide."

A representative for Lamar Advertising, the group that owns the billboard said:

“It is in the best interest of our company and the communities we serve to accept advertising copy openly. We do not accept or reject copy based upon agreement or disagreement with the views presented.”

The billboard is set to run through January 4th.

Watch a report, AFTER THE JUMP...

In 2012, a school district in Maryland defended the distribution of flyers from PFOX to high school students.

Continue reading "'Ex-Gay' Organization Erects Billboard In Virginia Claiming 'Nobody Is Born Gay' - VIDEO" »


Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe Launches LGBT Tourism Task Force - VIDEO

6a01a3fd2097df970b01bb07addc44970d-250wiVirginia has announced the formation of the state’s first LGBT Tourism Task Force, reports Loudon Times.

Made public during the Virginia-1 Tourism Summit in Reston yesterday by Democratic Governor Terry McAuliffe, the task force aims to showcase Virginia as a gay-friendly state for both residents and visitors.

According to state tourism officials, the task force is the second of its kind in the nation and the first in the South.

Secretary of Commerce Maurice Jones will head up the panel comprised of “industry stakeholders, LGBT community members and business leaders,” said McAuliffe.

McAuliffe’s address focused on the broad impact the $21.5 billion tourism industry has on state's economy:

“Tourism plays an important role in attaining that goal, building communities, and helping drive the new Virginia economy.” We have an opportunity to build upon the progress Virginia made this year in achieving marriage equality and ensure that visitors across the globe know that the commonwealth is open and welcoming to all.”

Jones added:

“Tourism has consistently proven to be a sound investment for Virginia. It is an instant revenue generator, channeling millions of dollars into the Commonwealth’s coffers and into the revenue stream to local governments.”

Watch McAuliffe speak at the conference, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe Launches LGBT Tourism Task Force - VIDEO" »


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