poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Gays, lesbians to protest for marriage equality
The Associated Press
While some Fredericksburg-area residents rush to the post office today to mail in their tax returns, some members of the gay and lesbian community will be standing at the corner protesting for marriage equality.

Fredericksburg resident Cris Elkins is coordinating the local "No Taxation With Discrimination" protest. He says gay and lesbian pay as much or more taxes as heterosexual couples, but "don't have the same legal rights as others."


Initiative calls for ban on gay marriages

By David Branson, Daily Staff Reporter
Even after the state House of Representatives voted against a resolution that would effectively ban same-sex marriages in Michigan, a citizen movement is still set on banning those unions. The March 9 vote failed to mount a two-thirds majority by eight votes, but the amendment could still be voted on in the November election if a petition drive gathers enough signatures.

Citizens for the Protection of Marriage, a lobbying group in Lansing this week began distributing petitions to place the amendment on the Nov. 2 ballot. The group would need to collect 317,757 signatures by July 6, in which case the amendment would be added to November’s ballot and, if passed, would be written into the Constitution.


Senate gives final passage to marriage amendment
By Bruce Schreiner
The Associated Press
FRANKFORT - The Kentucky Senate Tuesday gave its final consent for a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriages. Now the voters will decide the issue.

The Senate passed the measure 33-5, sending it to the November ballot. The proposal also would deny legal recognition of civil unions.


6 same-sex couples sue to lift ban
Six same-sex couples are fighting Florida's gay-marriage ban, pushing the state into a battle fought nationwide.
KEY WEST - Six same-sex couples and a gay-rights group are suing to reverse Florida's ban on gay marriage, thrusting the state into the politically explosive national battle well under way in California and Massachusetts.

The suit pits same-sex marriage advocates -- living in politically decisive South Florida, with its large gay population -- against the state's conservative governor, Jeb Bush, and his brother, President Bush, who advocates a constitutional amendment defining marriage as heterosexual union.

''I am under no illusion that this is going to be easy or quick,'' said Joan Higgs, 55, one of the plaintiffs in the suit, slated to be filed today in state court in Key West. ``I know we will prevail eventually. I just hope when I can marry my partner, I will still be alive.''


Trouble for gays in black churches
Pastors say Bible prohibits homosexuality
By Frank Reeves, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Growing up in Memphis, Tenn., Donna Payne was the preacher's kid. Her father was a United Methodist minister. Her mother was active in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, a denomination founded in the early 1800s after white Methodists made it clear that black Methodists were not welcome in their congregations.

For Payne, church meant Sunday school, Christmas pageants, prayer meetings, gospel music and close friends who helped pay her college tuition. But even in this cocoon of love and acceptance, Payne didn't tell anyone she was a lesbian.

"The mothers of the church might say, 'See that guy playing the piano, he's a little funny,' " followed by snickers or rolling eyes, Payne recalled. "When people started dying of AIDS in the 1980s, no one would say the reason. They would say he died of pneumonia or cancer."

Eventually, Payne left the church where she'd grown up, convinced she couldn't be both Christian and gay. She later joined Metropolitan Community Church, a predominantly gay denomination.


Man argues for gay marriage
By Kelly Wiese
Jefferson City — A gay man pleaded with state legislators Wednesday not to place a ban in the state Constitution that would bar him from marrying his partner of 11 years.

The House Committee on Children and Families heard the Senate version of legislation that would ask Missouri voters to define marriage as only between a man and a woman.

The committee did not vote on the proposed constitutional amendment. The House still must take a final vote on its proposed version to send it to the Senate before the session ends May 14.


Town: Zap 'defense of marriage' law in N.C.
 BY ROB SHAPARD : The Herald-Sun
CHAPEL HILL -- The Town Council voted unanimously Wednesday to ask state legislators to do away with North Carolina's "defense of marriage" law, which bans same-sex marriages.

The request is one of 10 bills that the council wants Orange County's state representatives to push for in the General Assembly. The Carrboro Board of Aldermen also has agreed to ask the county's legislators to seek a repeal of the state law.

Councilman Mark Kleinschmidt proposed making the request part of the council's legislative agenda, and he described it Wednesday as a way for the town to say, "Hell yeah, we're about fairness, we're about equality, we're about treating people fairly."

"If that means stepping out and making some noise, then give me the noisemaker," he said.


Battle over gay rights
The event, sponsored by the University Scholars Program and the Union Activities Board Issues and Ideas Committee featured gay rights advocate Elizabeth Birch, and Robert H. Knight, director of the Culture and Family Institute.

According to sponsors, the debate was originally intended to bring to light to the opposing sides of the controversial issue of gay marriage, but the speakers soon began to focus on moral and religious issues as well as the law.


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