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Old 06-20-2014, 04:12 AM   #41
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Default Presbyterian Ministers May Now Marry Same-Sex Couples

With a vote on Thursday, the Presbyterian Church USA became the biggest Christian denomination in the country to allow its ministers to marry same-sex couples in states where those marriages are legal. Previously, ministers were allowed to bless same-sex unions, but not unions that were equivalent to a marriage.

The vote was 371-238 for the resolution, a huge change from the denomination's narrow defeat of a similar measure in 2012. The Presbyterian Church USA has just under 2 million members and more than 10,000 congregations. The church also voted to change its constitution's definition of a marriage to gender-neutral terms, although that has to be ratified by regional Presbyterian bodies, as the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette explained.


The Presbyterian Church USA has lost about 10 percent of its membership over the past several years. Decades ago, many of the church's more conservative congregations left the larger organization for the Presbyterian Church in America. That organization condemns homosexuality as a sin, and prohibits ordination of women and openly gay members of the church. The Presbyterian Church USA voted in 2011 to allow openly-gay Presbyterians to become ordained ministers. That vote helped to grow the membership of its more conservative rival as more conservative PCUSA members defected.

The denomination is one of several mainline Christian organizations rethinking their stances on same-sex relationships. The United Methodist Church has been fiercely debating the denomination's prohibitions on same-sex marriage over the past several months, with a group of 80 pastors saying that the denomination could very well split over the issue. Although some Methodist members and clergy have pushed for years to reform the church's policy, the debate escalated when Frank Schaefer was found guilty of violating the church's laws when he officiated the same-sex marriage of his son. Schaefer will appeal that decision in a church hearing on Friday. The church has since shied away from trying new pastors who have officiated similar unions.

Pew Research had a good chart earlier this week detailing where many major denominations stand on same-sex marriage. It will now need a slight update:




http://www.thewire.com/national/2014...ouples/373107/
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Old 06-20-2014, 06:03 AM   #42
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Growing up in the Presbyterian Church of America (the other Presbyterian denomination), this is of special interest to me. I wonder if they changed their doctrine? I am not sure how else they could have sanctioned this.
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Are you educated or indoctrinated?
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Old 06-20-2014, 07:10 AM   #43
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Default Obama to Extend Array of Marriage Benefits to Gay Couples

WASHINGTON — The federal government on Friday will extend a wide range of marriage benefits to same-sex couples, making good on a promise by President Obama after the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act last year.

On Friday, the Department of Labor will clarify that federal employees will be able to take leave from their jobs to care for a same-sex spouse, something that has long been limited to heterosexual married couples.

After decades of blocking gay married couples from receiving the same benefits as their heterosexual counterparts, most federal agencies are now treating married couples alike, regardless of gender.

The action is important, officials said, because of differences in how states treat same-sex marriage. Without the regulatory changes, gay couples could be blocked from receiving federal benefits in states that do not recognize their marriages. Same-sex marriage is legal in 19 states and the District of Columbia.

“In almost all instances, federal benefits and obligations for same-sex married couples will be provided, regardless of where the couple lives,” a White House official said late Thursday before the agencies’ formal announcements.

The actions by the Labor Department extend the changes that have been made at other agencies.

Under the changes, same-sex spouses of Defense Department employees receive all the benefits of heterosexual husbands and wives. Federal immigration laws apply equally to gay and straight married couples. The Internal Revenue Service recognize the marriages of all gay couples. The spouses of gay federal employees get health insurance, life insurance and flexible spending accounts.

The action announced Friday is the latest example of Mr. Obama’s embrace of equality for same-sex couples following what he called his evolution on the issue. A politician who once opposed same-sex marriage, Mr. Obama said two years ago that his position had changed.

“At a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me, personally, it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married,” Mr. Obama told Robin Roberts of ABC News in May 2012.

Since then, Mr. Obama has aggressively sided with advocates of same-sex marriage and other gay rights. His administration argued in the Supreme Court for the Defense of Marriage Act to be overturned, and his administration argued that the court should strike down Proposition 8, the California ban on same-sex marriage. He also eliminated the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy for gay service members.

At a New York gala for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people on Tuesday, Mr. Obama hailed the rights that were extended to gays and lesbians in the last year, saying, “If we’re truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.”

“This is a country where no matter who you are, or what you look like, or how you came up, or what your last name is, or who you love — if you work hard and you take responsibility, you should be able to make it,” Mr. Obama said. “That’s the story of America. That’s the story of this movement.”

While he was at the event, Mr. Obama announced that he had directed his staff to develop an executive order that would ban federal contractors from discriminating in hiring decisions on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. And he vowed to keep pressuring Congress to pass a law that would extend those protections to all workers.

Officials said that a small number of provisions in federal law explicitly prohibit the government from providing benefits to same-sex couples. The officials said the president would call on Congress to pass legislation to change those provisions.

At the gala, Mr. Obama criticized Congress for failing to act on a broader anti-discrimination law to protect workers in all industries.

“This seems to be a pattern these days,” he said. “Everybody has just given up so much on Congress that we end up doing something through executive order. And that’s helpful, but it doesn’t reach everybody that needs to be reached. Congress needs to start working again, so let’s make sure that we keep the pressure up there.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/21/us...088400000&_r=2
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Old 07-02-2014, 02:35 PM   #44
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Default Hobby Lobby decision is a threat to LGBTQ civil rights gains

LGBTQ rights, particularly marriage equality, have made incredible advances over the past year. But, like other great human rights struggles, organized opponents are working hard to contain and undermine movement gains.

Many in the LGBTQ community may be unaware of the Religious Right’s strategy to undermine civil rights gains by establishing ever-larger exemptions from state and federal laws. But in a landmark decision focused on employers’ responsibility for contraceptive coverage under the Affordable Care Act, the Supreme Court has given the Right’s efforts a big boost—with potentially far-reaching implications.

While they’ll seldom admit it in public, leaders of the Religious Right understand there has been a cultural sea change regarding homosexuality. Marriage equality and workplace non-discrimination are on course to become the law of the land.

Faced with this reality, Religious Right legal groups like the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF, formerly known as Alliance Defense Fund) have been working hard on a back-door strategy to limit the reach of court and legislative wins for the LGBTQ community.

Despite existing protections and exemptions for religious institutions, the Religious Right is now seeking to expand the range of institutions and individuals that can claim religious exemptions to laws that protect our constitutional rights.

As a result of this week’s Hobby Lobby ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, a for-profit corporation has, for the first time in U.S. history, been endowed with the right to discriminate on the basis of religious convictions, throwing open the door for an expanded wave of attacks on LGBTQ people, including on marriage equality.

But the Right’s attacks are not just coming via the courts. We are also seeing conservative state legislatures advancing legislation that would carve out exemptions for “sincerely held religious beliefs.” These exemptions could be used to legalize, and institutionalize, discrimination against both LGBTQ employees and consumers.

Both the Hobby Lobby decision and legislation proposed in a number of states (passed in Mississippi) argue that “sincerely held religious belief” should trump state and federal laws—including long-established civil rights laws.

Earlier this year, the national LGBTQ community erupted in protest (rightly so) when conservative legislators in Arizona passed SB 1062, the “Religious Freedom Restoration Act,” which would have allowed private business owners to refuse services to LGBTQ customers on the basis of the owners’ religious beliefs.

Thanks in no small part to the enormous response of the LGBTQ community, the Act was vetoed by Governor Jan Brewer. Just one month later, however, the Mississippi legislature passed a nearly identical bill, which was quickly signed into law by Governor Phil Bryant.

But mainstream LGBTQ organizations made no similar showings in the course of the Hobby Lobby v. Burwell decision.

In Hobby Lobby, the owners of a private, for-profit, national craft store chain successfully won an exemption from a preventive health care provision within the Affordable Care Act, which requires that employee’s health insurance include coverage for birth control methods such as morning-after pills and intrauterine devices, claiming that doing so violated their company’s religious liberty.

Religious liberty is a foundational principle in our democracy, yet it is being eroded, manipulated, and redefined by the Right. Allowing businesses the right to discriminate against employees and customers according to their owners’ religious beliefs effectively transforms the Framers’ shield against religious tyranny into a sword institutions can wield to impose religious dictates on individuals in the marketplace.

The Hobby Lobby decision focused on contraceptive issues, and there’s a lesson in that for the LGBTQ community. Religious “conscience clauses” in many states entitle doctors and pharmacists to refuse to offer reproductive health services they object to.

For decades, the Religious Right has been whittling away at the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision which decriminalized abortion. As a result, while Roe still stands, women do not have anything close to the access to abortion care that is needed. This is due, in large part, to the Right’s long-term strategy to erode access in the name of “abortion reduction”—in case it was unable to overturn Roe. This strategy has worked shockingly well.

Exemptions can beget exemptions. It takes no stretch of the imagination to envision dozens of lawsuits seeking to build upon the Hobby Lobby ruling and to foresee legislation pushing the boundaries of what classifies as permissible bigotry. A generation of litigation, testing the breadth and depth of the corporate exemption, has just begun.

If corporations are able to pick and choose which civil rights laws will apply to them, the rights of all Americans are at risk, not just LGBTQ rights or sexual and reproductive health and rights.

The Mississippi law (which will almost certainly be challenged in federal court), is much more direct in applying the standard of “sincerely held religious belief” to legalize overt discrimination against LGBTQ people.

Indeed, it seems likely that the Supreme Court will soon be asked to decide whether “sincerely held religious belief” allows business owners to discriminate against LGBTQ customers and employees.

The implications of this campaign are clear. If corporations enjoy exemptions from federal laws in the name of religious freedom, the rest of us may be forced to choose between our livelihoods and our consciences.

If a business owner happens to believe God demands women always be subservient to men, could the company legally be allowed to deny women managerial positions?

As Justice Ginsberg noted in her dissent of the Hobby Lobby ruling, could businesses owned by Scientologists deny health care coverage for antidepressants? Jehovah’s Witnesses don’t believe in whole-blood products; even if you don’t happen to share that faith, could your boss nevertheless deny you coverage for surgeries?

There are dozens of conservative-dominated state legislatures around the country that might add religious liberty exemptions to state laws—and perhaps even their state constitutions—specifically to ensure that even if the LGBTQ community wins the protections it deserves, many businesses and individuals will be under no obligation to honor those legal protections.

Such proposals are already being floated in Utah, Idaho, Georgia, and beyond.

The Religious Right has cast itself in the role of heroic defender of religious liberty. But we are not fooled.

http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2014/07/h...flKzU.facebook
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Old 07-03-2014, 07:43 AM   #45
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Default Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Uganda and Pepe Julian Onziema

John Oliver celebrates recent LGBT rights milestones in the United States before covering oppressive anti-gay laws in Uganda. (Also, the US involvement in inspiring and funding those laws.) Ugandan LGBTI rights advocate Pepe Julian Onziema sits down with John to discuss the situation in his home country.

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Old 07-03-2014, 12:45 PM   #46
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Default Viewpoint: Should gay men and lesbians be bracketed together?

"We have absolutely nothing in common with gay men," says Eda, a young lesbian, "so I have no idea why we are lumped in together."

Not everyone agrees. Since the late 1980s, lesbians and gay men have been treated almost as one generic group. In recent years, other sexual minorities and preferences have joined them.

The term LGBT, representing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, has been in widespread use since the early 1990s. Recent additions - queer, "questioning" and intersex - have seen the term expand to LGBTQQI in many places. But do lesbians and gay men, let alone the others on the list, share the same issues, values and goals?

Anthony Lorenzo, a young gay journalist, says the list has become so long, "We've had to start using Sanskrit because we've run out of letters."

Bisexuals have argued that they are disliked and mistrusted by both straight and gay people. Trans people say they should be included because they experience hatred and discrimination, and thereby are campaigning along similar lines as the gay community for equality.

But what about those who wish to add asexual to the pot? Are asexual people facing the same category of discrimination. And "polyamorous"? Would it end at LGBTQQIAP?

There is scepticism from some activists. Paul Burston, long-time gay rights campaigner, suggests that one could even take a longer formulation and add NQBHTHOWTB (Not Queer But Happy To Help Out When They're Busy). Or it could be shortened to GLW (Gay, Lesbian or Whatever).

An event in Canada is currently advertising itself as an "annual festival of LGBTTIQQ2SA culture and human rights", with LGBTTIQQ2SA representing "a broad array of identities such as, but not limited to, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, intersex, queer, questioning, two-spirited, and allies". Two-spirited is a term used by Native Americans to describe more than one gender identity.

Gay men and lesbians have always faced different challenges.

Until 1967 consenting sex between men, of any age, was criminalised in the UK. Following decriminalisation, prejudice prevailed, with police entrapment operations to seek out men "cottaging" - having sex in public toilets and parks - creating fear and insecurity.

Very interesting continuation of article. Historical perspective is great.
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Old 07-03-2014, 05:34 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kobi View Post
that article asking whether gay men and lesbians should be bracketed together
A complicated issue, to be sure, but I honestly believe that Ms. Power is correct that political cooperation between gay men and lesbians on sexual orientation issues is useful.

I halfway disagree that it's an entirely separate issue from sexism, because I honestly believe it (along with transphobia and lots of other shit, hence the LGBT coalition) largely flows from the same patriarchal well, even if lesbians are in a position to see it far more clearly than gay men do. (Sadly, too many gay men seem to think they can join the patriarchy, when hatred of gay men frequently stems from the belief that gay men are womanlike, and the belief that this makes them a failure of masculinity that needs to be punished lest manhood be "degraded.")
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Old 07-14-2014, 12:46 PM   #48
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Default Christian university gets religious exemption to deny transgender student housing

NEWBERG, Ore. — The U.S. Department of Education has granted a Christian university a religious exemption from federal anti-discrimination laws after a transgender student filed a discrimination complaint because the school would not allowing him to live in the men’s dormitories.

PQ Monthly reports that George Fox University obtained the exemption in its effort to deny the student, Jayce Marcus, a place in the campus’ single-sex residence halls on the basis that it is a “Christ-centered community.”

Portland attorney Paul Southwick filed a Title IX discrimination complaint with the DOE in early April on behalf of Marcus, a junior at the Christian university in Newberg, Ore., who has medically, socially, and legally transitioned.

Southwick said the DOE closed Marcus’ complaint earlier this week, granting George Fox an unusually speedy “religious exemption.”

Exemptions historically take years to get, according to Southwick, but George Fox received theirs in just a few months. He says the school applied for the exemption “in secret” while still negotiating the housing dispute with Marcus, and “a mere four days before Jayce filed his complaint” with the DOE.

Title IX, passed in 1972, prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex. In 2010, the DOE issued guidance clarifying that Title IX also protects LGBT students from sex discrimination, which would apply to complaints such as Marcus.’

But the law also includes a broad exemption for educational institutions which are “controlled by a religious organization.”

School officials said their Christian theology makes it necessary for their residential facilities to be single gender.

The exemption comes only weeks following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision, which many LGBT rights advocates fear will be used by religious organizations to discriminate against LGBT people.

“This is worse than Hobby Lobby because George Fox is largely funded by taxpayer money,” says Southwick, who added that he believes George Fox “is the first Christian college to ask the federal government for a permission slip to discriminate against transgender students.”

http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2014/07/c...udent-housing/
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Old 07-14-2014, 01:17 PM   #49
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Geez, I didn't even know this thread was here. Talk about head in the sand.

*subscribing and going back to read through*

Thank you Kobi!
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Old 07-15-2014, 02:05 PM   #50
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Default Large-scale government health survey reports on gay, bisexual Americans

Less than 3 percent of U.S. adults identify themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual, according to the first large-scale government survey measuring Americans’ sexual orientation.

The National Health Interview Survey, released Tuesday by U.S. Centers for Disease Control, found that 1.6 percent of adults self-identify as gay or lesbian, and 0.7 percent consider themselves bisexual.

An additional 1.1 percent declined to answer, responded “I don’t know the answer” or said they were “something else.”

The survey, conducted in 2013, included nearly 35,000 adults and is the federal government’s premier tool for annually assessing Americans’ health and behaviors.

The latest report marks the first time since the survey began in 1957 that it has included a measure of sexual orientation. The survey did not ask about gender identity, due to the much larger sample size needed to gain an accurate assessment of transgender Americans.

But the survey does offers insight through the lens of sexual orientation on measures critical to public health, such as smoking, drinking and health insurance status.

http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2014/07/l...ual-americans/

See the actual report here.

-------------------------------------------


Not being a math/statistics person, I'm not sure one can say this was a "large" sample or even a statistically significant one. The sample size was less than 35,000 people to represent the reality of the 318,449,914+ people in the USA. Some math/stats/research person needs to weigh in on this.

It was fun to find the US and World population clock tho.
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Old 07-15-2014, 02:26 PM   #51
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Default Major League Baseball appoints Billy Bean consultant for inclusion, equality

MINNEAPOLIS — Major League Baseball has appointed former outfielder Billy Bean, who came out as gay after his playing career, to serve as a consultant in guiding the sport toward greater inclusion and equality.

Commissioner Bud Selig made the announcement Tuesday before the All-Star game.

Joining Bean and Selig at a news conference was Lutha Burke, the sister of Glenn Burke, who was the first MLB player to come out as gay after retiring. Burke died in 1995.

Bean will provide guidance and training related to efforts designed to support the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community throughout baseball. He’ll work with players and front office personnel through the major and minor leagues.

Bean played for Detroit, the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego over parts of six seasons and hit .226. He dedicated his autobiography to Burke.

http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2014/07/m...sion-equality/
---------------------------------------


They mean well. Hopefully he is part of a team of diverse people working on this project. One white gay guy can not possibly know and represent all the complexities involved under the diversity umbrella.
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Old 08-28-2014, 09:10 AM   #52
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Default California

Yesterday the California Assembly passed bill AB2501 by a 50-10 margin, and it is now headed to Gov. Brown for signature.

California is the first state to say that "gay panic" is not a lawful excuse for killing someone.

I have a super hard time reposting from my ipad, so if you want to read the full story, go to LGBTQNation.com for the details.
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Old 09-06-2014, 02:45 PM   #53
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Default Controversial book on Matthew Shepard's death to receive award

The Wyoming State Historical Society will honor a controversial book about Matthew Shepard that claims he was killed in a drug deal gone wrong instead of the conventional belief that he was killed because he was gay – a move that’s raising some eyebrows.

“The Book of Matt: Hidden Truths About the Murder of Matthew Shepard,” by Stephen Jimenez, an investigative journalist who is openly gay, will receive an honorable mention in the nonfiction book category at a luncheon in Gillette on Saturday, said Linda Fabian, the Wyoming State Historical Society’s executive secretary.

“If the award was for a fictional book, I certainly would have no objection to it,” said Albany County Undersheriff Robert DeBree, who was the lead investigator in the 1998 murder of Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student.

Rick Ewig, president of the state historical society, said the nonprofit organization’s goal is to promote study of Wyoming’s history. Shepard’s murder is part of the state’s history.

The book’s publisher nominated the book, he said.

“It doesn’t mean we accept the interpretation of that book,” he said, noting that the historical society has been open to the more conventional belief that the murder was a hate crime, too.

Tom Rea, editor of Wyohistory.org, a project of the historical society, has published two accounts of Shepard’s murder written by Jason Marsden, executive director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, which was established by Shepard’s parents.

One account is a description of the events in Shepard’s murder. The other is a more personal take on the murder.

Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson both received life sentences for murdering Shepard, who was 21 at the time of his death.

After meeting at a bar and possibly indicating they were gay, the two men drove Shepard outside Laramie, punched and pistol-whipped him, tied him to a cattle fence and left him unconscious. They took Shepard’s wallet, identification and shoes.

In his police confession, McKinney described Shepard in unflattering gay terms.

But “The Book of Matt” claims that McKinney believed Shepard could lead him to a delivery of $10,000 in methamphetamine that he could steal from Shepard. Outside town, McKinney lost control, the book claims.

The book criticizes the media for mythologizing the motives.

Albany County Sheriff Dave O’Malley, who investigated the murder in 1998, said Jimenez’s book should have been called “The Book of Lies.”

“Those of us who actually lived the situation know what is fact and what is fiction,” he said. “In my opinion, this ‘work’ is fiction with a few factual innuendos thrown in.”

Marsden, the director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, didn’t respond to the news of the state historical society award. But he said the book is an attempt to rewrite history based on untrustworthy sources, factual errors and rumors.

He said the foundation doesn’t react to “innuendo, rumor or conspiracy theories.”

“Instead we remain committed to honoring Matthew’s memory, and refuse to be intimidated by those who seek to tarnish it,” he added.

Jimenez continues to defend his book, which will be released in paperback Sept. 16, the same day as an international edition is published in England, Ireland, Germany, Australia and Japan.

Jimenez wrote a new 20-page afterword with new sources who have corroborated the claims made in the book, he said.

The book started with a piece he did for ABC's "20/20" that won two awards. He continued reporting after the piece aired in 2004, and he said he learned more about the drug connection.

On Friday, he said he was traveling to Gillette with his partner to accept the award.

“The fact that this has been labeled as anti-gay is absolutely ridiculous,” he said. “I have been out since the 1970s.”

Former Albany County Attorney Cal Rerucha, now the Carbon County attorney, said the book is correct. The case Rerucha said he tried was felony murder and the motive was robbery.

He remains adamant that Shepard's death wasn't a hate crime.

"If methamphetamine wouldn’t be in this case, we wouldn’t have had a murder,” he said.

http://trib.com/news/state-and-regio...f2917a217.html
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Old 09-07-2014, 07:47 PM   #54
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Default Martina proposes to girlfriend at U.S. Open!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/0...n_5778050.html

Awesome!
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:56 PM   #55
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I miss Martina in the Tennis arena
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Old 09-07-2014, 09:17 PM   #56
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I miss Martina in the Tennis arena
Me too. Used to love to watch her and Chrissie.
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Old 09-08-2014, 01:40 PM   #57
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Default Neil Patrick Harris gets married in Italy


The "How I Met Your Mother" star and his actor-chef groom, David Burtka, were married Saturday in Italy. They'd been dating for 10 years and are parents to 3-year-old twins, Gideon and Harper. The grooms wore custom Tom Ford tuxedos and Elton John performed at the reception.

"Yup, we put the 'n' and 'd' in 'husband,'" Harris tweeted Monday. His publicist later confirmed the news.

Harris, 41, just won a Tony Award for his role in "Hedwig and the Angry Inch." He has been in several Broadway productions, including "Assassins," ''Proof" and as the exuberant master of ceremonies in "Cabaret."

Burtka, 39, played Tulsa in the Bernadette Peters-led revival of "Gypsy," was seen off-Broadway in "The Play About the Baby" and is also a chef.

"How I Met Your Mother" producer Pam Fryman officiated at the wedding.

http://news.yahoo.com/neil-patrick-h...174924690.html
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Old 09-22-2014, 04:45 PM   #58
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Default Results of new Pew Poll r.e. same sex marriage and homosexuality

Homosexuality and Same-Sex Marriage

The public is evenly divided over whether businesses that provide wedding services, like catering or flowers, should be required to provide services to same-sex couples despite religious objections to same-sex marriage. Half (49%) say that wedding-related businesses should be required to provide services to same-sex couples just as they would to all other customers, while 47% say that these businesses should be allowed to refuse services to same-sex couples for religious reasons.

More men than women say that businesses should be allowed to refuse services for same-sex weddings for religious reasons (52% vs. 42%), and whites (52%) are more likely than either blacks (36%) or Hispanics (35%) to say the same. There is also a large generation gap on this issue. Most Americans ages 65 and older (60%) say that wedding-related businesses should be able to decline to provide services for same-sex weddings, while most adults under the age of 30 (62%) take the opposite view, saying that businesses should be required to provide services for same-sex weddings. Those between the ages of 30 and 64 are evenly divided on this question.

Among religious groups, white evangelical Protestants express the strongest support for allowing businesses to refuse to provide services for same-sex weddings (71%). At the other end of the spectrum, majorities of Hispanic Catholics (64%) and the religiously unaffiliated (61%) say businesses should be required to provide wedding services for same-sex couples, as do 59% of black Protestants. White Catholics and white mainline Protestants are more evenly split on this question.

Is Homosexual Behavior Sinful?

The survey also finds a close link between views of whether homosexual behavior is a sin and requiring businesses to provide services for same-sex weddings. Among those who say homosexual behavior is a sin, six-in-ten say that businesses should not be required to provide services for same-sex weddings. But among those who say homosexual behavior is not a sin, two-thirds say businesses should be required to service same-sex weddings.

The number of people who view homosexual behavior as sinful has ticked up in the past year, from 45% in 2013 to 50% in the current poll.

The view that homosexual behavior is sinful is most common among white evangelical Protestants (82%) and black Protestants (77%). By contrast, nearly three-quarters of religious “nones” (72%) say that homosexual behavior is not sinful. White mainline Protestants and Catholics are more evenly divided about whether homosexual behavior is sinful.

Views on Same-Sex Marriage

The current poll finds 49% of the public expressing support for same-sex marriage and 41% expressing opposition. Three-quarters of white evangelical Protestants oppose same-sex marriage. By contrast, three-quarters of the religiously unaffiliated support allowing gays and lesbians to marry legally. There is also more support than opposition to same-sex marriage among Catholics and white mainline Protestants.

Support for same-sex marriage in the current poll is on par with Pew Research polls conducted in 2013, when 50% expressed support for same-sex marriage and 43% registered opposition, but down slightly from a February 2014 Pew Research poll that found 54% support for same-sex marriage. It is too early to know whether this is an anomaly or the beginning of a reversal or leveling off of the growth in support for same-sex marriage widely observed in polls over the past decade.

http://www.pewforum.org/2014/09/22/s...itical-issues/
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Old 10-01-2014, 06:30 AM   #59
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Default GLAAD study: Gay depictions increase on TV

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Television has increased and improved its depiction of gay, lesbian and bisexual characters, with the edge going to cable and the Internet over broadcast networks, according to a study released Wednesday.

Networks are promoting understanding of gay lives with some of the most inclusive programs yet, but should "strive to include significant transgender content," Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD, said in a statement.

Transgender characters are featured on cable and Internet fare such as the online series "Orange Is the New Black" from Netflix and "Transparent" from Amazon, the media advocacy group said.

In this year's Emmy Award nominations, "Orange Is the New Black" co-star Laverne Cox became the first openly transgender actress to receive a nod.

The overall on-screen progress comes as the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community has made social and political strides that include legalization of same-sex marriage in some U.S. states and the end of a military ban on openly gay service members, GLAAD said.

In the 2014-15 season, GLAAD's study found that 3.9 percent of 813 characters regularly seen on prime-time network scripted series will be lesbian, gay or bisexual, a total of 32 characters.

That represents an increase over last year's 3.3 percent, but is down from the 4.4 percent record high for LGBT depictions on network series in 2012.

Among the networks, Fox again emerged with the highest percentage of lesbian, gay or bisexual regular characters, 6.5 percent, with "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" and "Glee" among the programs contributing to the tally. ABC, which had tied with Fox for first last year at 5.4 percent, dropped to 4.5 percent.

NBC is at 3.8 percent, up a point from last year, while CBS' shows had 3.2 percent gay, lesbian or bisexual characters, up 1.9 percent from last season. The CW has no regular LGBT characters, GLAAD said.

Among cable TV shows, there were 64 regular LGBT characters, up from 42 last season. HBO has the most characters, followed by ABC Family and Showtime. One transgender character, on ABC Family's "The Fosters," was found by the study.

GLAAD also studied other aspects of diversity on network TV and found it wanting.

Despite several new high-profile broadcast series starring women, including Alfre Woodward as the U.S. president in NBC's "State of Affairs" and Tea Leoni as secretary of state in CBS' "Madam Secretary," the percentage of female characters has declined to 40 percent, down 3 points from last year.

Ethnic characters on network shows make up 27 percent of the total, compared with 23 percent last season, with 1.4 percent depicted as people with disabilities, a slight increase from 1 percent in 2013, GLAAD found.

http://news.yahoo.com/glaad-study-ga...110204433.html
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Old 10-01-2014, 09:33 AM   #60
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Yesterday the California Assembly passed bill AB2501 by a 50-10 margin, and it is now headed to Gov. Brown for signature.

California is the first state to say that "gay panic" is not a lawful excuse for killing someone.

I have a super hard time reposting from my ipad, so if you want to read the full story, go to LGBTQNation.com for the details.
Governor Brown signed this Bill ino law this week!
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