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U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu Introduces Federal Bill That Would Ban Ex-Gay Reparative Therapy

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LGBT conversion therapy would be considered fraud and outlawed in all 50 states through the Federal Trade Commission under a proposal introduced by a California Democrat on Tuesday. 

As a member of the California Legislature, U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu authored the Golden State's ban on conversion therapy to change people's sexual orientation. However, his federal "Therapeutic Fraud Prevention Act" would go further than the California law, applying to people of all ages and not just those under 18. The proposal would also explicitly prohibit therapy to change people's gender identity, an idea that has gained momentum in the wake of the death of Leelah Alcorn.  

BuzzFeed News reports: 

“The public views conversion therapy as quackery, as something that harms people,” Lieu told BuzzFeed News on Monday afternoon, just after landing back in D.C. from California. “Eventually, I believe Congress will catch up to that, but you do need to start somewhere, so that’s why we’re introducing this legislation.”

He faces an uphill battle: The legislation, which would label conversion therapy an “unfair or deceptive act or practice” that would be illegal under the Federal Trade Commission Act, is being introduced with less than three dozen co-sponsors — all of whom are Democrats.

Lieu does, however, have a powerful ally in his effort. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has signed on as an original co-sponsor of the bill.

California, New Jersey, Oregon and Washington, D.C. are the only jurisdictions that have passed laws banning conversion therapy, but only for minors. Earlier this year, President Barack Obama came out in support of banning the discredited practice. 

David Stacy, government affairs director for the Human Rights Campaign, said the following of Lieu's bill: 

“This vitally important legislation has the potential to save countless lives across this country by helping to end a practice that uses fear and shame to tell LGBT people the only way to find love or acceptance is to change the very nature of who they are. We’re proud to work alongside Congressman Lieu and our partners to send a different message - a message of hope, acceptance, and love where such a demeaning and destructive practice isn’t promoted as useful therapy. Ending this harmful profit-making practice is something that all of Congress should be able to rally behind.”


Barney Frank Reveals to Andy Cohen Who's the Biggest Idiot in Washington - WATCH

Frank

On Wednesday night's Watch What Happens Live! former congressman Barney Frank played a round of "Plead the Fifth" with host Andy Cohen and was asked who he thinks is the biggest idiot in Washington D.C.

Think you know the answer? Find out, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Barney Frank Reveals to Andy Cohen Who's the Biggest Idiot in Washington - WATCH" »


Anti-Gay Activists Voice Extreme Opinions At NOM 'March For Marriage' in Revealing HRC Video: WATCH

NOM march 2015

Last Saturday, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) held a “March for Marriage” in Washington, D.C., rallying opponents of marriage equality before marching them to the Supreme Court.

Senator Ruben Diaz - the only Democrat who opposed marriage equality in the New York Senate - was the only elected lawmaker who spoke at the event but he was ably assisted by the likes of Rev. Erick Salgado and Peter LaBarbera from Americans For The Truth About Homosexuality.

Human Rights Campaign asked a number of NOM supporters why they are so adamantly against marriage equality.

The reasons given range from typically mundane (one man says "nature is nature" but admits he's not quite sure what that means, a woman is convinced that "marriage is one man and one woman") to seriously worrying (gay people are choosing to go against god and bringing about the destruction of American).

Canada and Mexico would appear to be safe for now.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Anti-Gay Activists Voice Extreme Opinions At NOM 'March For Marriage' in Revealing HRC Video: WATCH" »


Nationwide Marriage Equality Rallies, TV Ads Planned In Advance Of Tuesday's SCOTUS Arguments: VIDEO

UniteForMarriage

Marriage equality rallies are planned in more than 40 cities over the next few days to mark Tuesday's oral arguments at the U.S. Supreme Court.

From Unite For Marriage

Like in 2013, a coalition of organizations and dedicated local organizers will be working together leading up to the oral arguments and Decision Day to make clear to the Supreme Court that the American public supports marriage equality, and that now is the time to rule once and for all that all couples -- gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer and straight -- are entitled to the same rights and protections of marriage.

Marriage equality supporters will rally outside the Supreme Court beginning at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday. Unite For Marriage is also staging a national weekend of prayer that will culminate in a service at National City Christian Church in Washington on Sunday evening.  

FreedomtomarryDozens of other rallies are planned from Alaska to Florida on Sunday and Monday, including three in Alabama and four in both Mississippi and Tennessee. To find out whether there's a rally planned in your city, visit Unite For Marriage

Meanwhile, Freedom To Marry has released a national TV ad scheduled to air Sunday on three national political shows and 60 Minutes, in addition to cable programs throughout the week:  

“With this latest ad, Freedom to Marry is summing up our closing argument, in hopes of closing our doors after getting the national win,” said Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry. “After 30-plus years of doing marriage work, I am gratified that we're in such a strong place as we head into court on Tuesday. The American people have resoundingly and unequivocally embraced the side of love and fairness. We hope the Supreme Court does the right thing and agrees with more than 60 federal and state courts that have held marriage discrimination unconstitutional. America is ready for the freedom to marry. It's time.”

Watch the ad, AFTER THE JUMP ...

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'Beer Pong Rapist' Sentenced To 150 Years In Prison For Sexually Assaulting Numerous Male Victims: VIDEO

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A Maryland man was sentenced to 150 years in prison on Wednesday after he was found guilty earlier this year on 11 counts of second- and third-degree sexual offenses reports the AP. Prosecutors say 40-year-old Joey Poindexter, dubbed the "Beer Pong Rapist," who met his victims in beer pong tournaments and bars, was convicted of assaulting five men, but prosecutors believe there are at least two dozen more unidentified victims after police found that Poindexter recorded and took dozens of photos on his phone of himself assaulting several unconscious, incoherent men; prosecutors believe that Poindexter assaulted an additional 30 men. Ramon Korionoff of the Montgomery County State Attorney’s Office stated the series of rapes began in 2011 and expressed disgust with Poindexter’s actions.

Said Korionoff:

"Completely heinous and terrible sexual assaults. He did this knowing full well that he was taking advantage of people that were intoxicated."

Other reports state that the series of assaults may have occurred over the span of the last 10 years. Surveillance video from one bar in College Park, Md. shows Poindexter, a property appraiser, buying a Long Island Iced Tea for one of his victims, which the victim consumed, with Poindexter escorting the drugged victim outside. The victim awoke the next morning in Poindexter’s home to find himself wearing a pair of Poindexter’s shorts and found his clothes in a pile next to him on the floor. The victim, who had no memory of the previous evening, approached police with the suspicion that he was sexually assaulted. The victim questioned Poindexter, while wearing a police wire, about the night’s events with Poindexter responding, "If it makes you feel any better, I don't have any (expletive) AIDS, if anything did happen."

Additional victims later came forward after investigators issued a public appeal for the case; some victims had no inclination they had even been assaulted until they were shown photo and video evidence. Poindexter’s lawyer says her client intends on appealing the 150-year sentence.

Watch CBS Baltimore's coverage of the sentencing, including a statement from Poindexter's lawyer, AFTER THE JUMP...

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GOP Introduces Resolution To Kill Anti-LGBT Discrimination Ban In D.C. Religious Schools: VIDEO

Vicky_Hartzler

A GOP representative has introduced a resolution in the U.S. House calling on Congress to kill a bill passed by the Washington, D.C. City Council that would ban discrimination against LGBT students in religious schools, reports the Washington Blade.

220px-Mark_Meadows,_Official_Portrait,_113th_CongressThe resolution presented by Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) was co-sponsored by Reps. Bill Flores (R-Tex.) and Values Voter Summit attendee Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) (right).

In a statement issued Wednesday explaining her opposition to the D.C. Human Rights Amendment Act of 2014, Hartzler - who has compared same-sex marriage to polygamy, incest and pedophilia - said:

“By passing this act, the D.C. City Council has infringed on the fundamental right of religious freedom. No faith-based school should be forced to endorse, fund, or sponsor groups that do not share their beliefs.”

The 2014 legislation calls for repealing a provision in the 1989 D.C. Human Rights Act exempting religious schools from having to comply with the Human Rights Act’s ban on discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Hartzler has also introduced a resolution seeking to kill the D.C. Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Amendment Act which would ban employers from discriminating based on their personal reproductive health decisions.

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has scheduled a markup hearing to finalize the second resolution. It is not yet known if the committee intends to markup Hartzler’s resolution targeting the Human Rights Amendment Act during that same hearing.

Hartzler opponents said the resolutions are unlikely to pass. Instead, she aims to gain support for the ultimate goal which is to kill both bills by persuading Congress to attach an amendment to the D.C. appropriations bill blocking the city from implementing the two measures.

In 2011, Hartzler told a gay med student that he "shouldn't feel bad" about a constitutional amendment she helped pass banning same-sex marriage in Missouri because gays were already banned from marrying by statute.

Watch her try to explain her opposition to same-sex marriage to the student in question, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "GOP Introduces Resolution To Kill Anti-LGBT Discrimination Ban In D.C. Religious Schools: VIDEO" »


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