Tag Archives: LGBT rights

HomoQuotable – Stephen Benjamin

“I was always discreet, I never considered it would be an issue. I thought if I don’t say anything, they’re not going to ask me. But it was more aggressive than I thought.” – Arabic languages specialist Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Stephen Benjamin, who was dismissed from the Navy in another round of DADT-related firings. Benjamin admitted sending his …

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International Day Against Homophobia

Today is the International Day Against Homophobia. In observance of the occasion, the Human Rights Watch has listed five world leaders to its Hall Of Shame because of their anti-gay actions in the last year: 1. Pope Benedict XVI: for undermining families. The leader of the Holy See has gone well beyond expressing the Church’s theological views on homosexuality. 2. …

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Tony Blair: Six Weeks Left

A decade after taking over as British Prime Minister, Tony Blair steps down on June 27th. Widely credited for helping move Britain away from socialism towards a vibrant, pro-market economy, Blair instituted welfare reforms, tripled the funding for the national health service, and brokered a truce with the IRA. Today Britain has the world’s 5th largest economy and the pound …

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Oregon Approves Civil Unions

Yesterday Oregon’s Senate approved a domestic partnership bill that will give the state’s gay couple most of the rights of full marriage. The bill is expected to be signed into law next week by Gov. Ted Kulongoski. Oregon will join New Jersey, Vermont, Connecticut, and New Hampshire as one of the five states to offer civil unions to gay couples. …

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Hate Crimes Vote Recap

A 2/3 majority would be needed in both the House and Senate to override Dubya’s possible veto of the Hate Crimes Act, which the bill’s backers do not think they can achieve. Although his senior advisors are recommending a veto, historically, the Decider has been very hesitant to use his veto privilege, so we might still have a chance. In …

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Hate Crimes Bill Passes House!

Here is the result of the just completed House vote on the Hate Crimes Act, HR 1592: Democratic: Yes: 212 No: 14 Republican: Yes: 25 No: 166 Total: Yes: 237 No: 180 To applause and a few cheers, from the podium, Barney Frank exhulted, “The bill is passed!” Human Rights Campaign head Joe Solmonese: “This is a historic day that …

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Call Now: 202-224-3121

Today is the last day to call your representative and urge their support of the LGBT-inclusive hate crimes act. Late last night, the measure passed out of the House Judiciary Committee and now goes to a vote before the full House chamber tomorrow. As I mentioned yesterday, right-wingnuts are deluging Congress with calls and backers of the bill are becoming …

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West Loses In New Paltz

Mayor Jason West lost his reelection bid in New Paltz, New York yesterday. You may remember West from 2004, when he followed the lead of SF Mayor Gavin Newsom and presided over the weddings of 24 gay couples in his tiny village on the Hudson, ramping up debate on gay marriage in the New York area. West was charged with …

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Truthsmellers

Calling it the “greatest threat to American freedom today”, some Christian activists are staging a campaign against the passage of the Matthew Shepard Act, a bill currently before Congress that would include LGBT people in hate crimes protections. The Christian group is Truthtellers, headed by Rev. Ted Pike, whom you may recall as being behind the 2004 protest of a …

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Another Challenge to DADT

Log Cabin Republicans have forced a legal challenge to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”, after a California federal judged ruled that their case against the government will proceed on June 18th. A similar suit filed by the Servicemembers’s Legal Defense Network is awaiting a ruling from a Boston federal judge, after the SLDN sued for the reinstatement of 12 soldiers discharged …

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Progress Around the Nation

The New Hampshire legislative approved of same-sex civil unions today, sending the bill to Gov. John Lynch, who has said he will sign it, joining NH with New Jersey, Connecticut and Vermont. Iowa today extended civil rights protections to LGBT folks in an ENDA-tpe bill that took 15 years to gather enough votes to pass. Almost two-thirds of polled New …

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ENDA Introduced To House

ABOVE: Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) speaks about ENDA, which he and Reps. Deb Price (R-OH) , Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and Chris Shays (R-CT) introduced to the U.S. House of Representatives. More photos are here. (via – Human Rights Campaign.) Rep. Baldwin: “Twenty-five years ago, my own state of Wisconsin was the first in the nation to add sexual orientation to …

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ENDA To Be Re-Introduced Tomorrow

This just in… WASHINGTON — On Tuesday, April 24, at 1:00 p.m., Reps. Barney Frank, D-Mass.; Deborah Pryce, R-Ohio; Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis.; and Chris Shays, R-Conn., will introduce the bipartisan Employment Non-Discrimination Act in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill addresses discrimination in the workplace by making it illegal to fire, refuse to hire or refuse to promote an …

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Clergy Back Hate Crimes Act

Hundreds of clergy from all faiths have gathered in Washington today to lobby for the passage of ENDA and the LGBT-inclusive hate crimes bill, which last week was renamed the Matthew Shepard Act when it was introduced in the Senate. HRC’s Joe Solmonese: “For too long, there has been a false perception in American politics that faith and religion stand …

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Iraq Improves Stance On Gays

Last week, Deb Price of the Detroit Press managed to get the Iraq government’s spokesman, Ali al-Dabbagh, to now condemn the killing of Iraqi gays, when she demanded, “Does the Iraqi government condemn the killings of Iraqis targeted specifically because they’re homosexual?” The spokesman responded, “Iraqi government condemn each and every killing — whoever are being killed. Definitely we condemn …

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Firefighter Wins Discrimination Suit

A male firefighter was awarded $1.7M by a Los Angeles jury for anti-gay discrimination he claims he suffered for coming to the defense of a lesbian firefighter. The firefighter had claimed he was forced out of the fire department after he supported his coworker in her homophobic bias suit against the department. I presume the male firefighter is straight, making …

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Queer Superheroes Hold First Meeting

Last night I attended the first organizational meeting of the Queer Justice League, where about 100 activists gathered to discuss the purpose, structure, rules and procedures of the group. During an interesting opening exercise, attendees were asked to give their first names, preferred gender pronoun, and a one-word description of their mood about the meeting. Curious, optimistic, hopeful, ready, excited, …

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Rosanne Steps In It

Rosanne Barr, for many years a staunch supporter of the gay community, made some rather surprising remarks on the radio yesterday. Sitting in as guest host, during an interview with black lesbian activist Jasmye Cannick, Rosanne said: “Never once in my 54 years have I ever once heard a gay or lesbian person who’s politically active say one thing about …

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Federal Hate Crimes Vote On Thursday

The bill to include LGBT people for protection under the federal hate crimes law comes to a vote on Thursday. I know I nagged you good people to write your representative on this issue just a few weeks ago, but please do so again, particularly if your Congressperson has not yet signed on as co-sponsor. The Human Right Campaign has …

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HomoQuotable – Jennifer Crisler

“We were proud to join the many diverse families attending the White House Egg Roll this year. For the second year in a row, gay and lesbian-headed families participated in a great American tradition. Despite the cold weather and freezing temperatures, gay and lesbian families came and made their presence known, making our existence real to millions of Americans.” – …

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