poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Adoption Service Sued After Refusing Gay Couple
by Mary Ellen Peterson Newscenter
(San Francisco, California) A San Jose gay couple is suing an internet based adoption service after it refused them service.  

In a decision issued Wednesday, federal district court judge Phyllis Hamilton ruled that a lawsuit against for discriminating against same-sex couples can proceed to trial. is the largest adoption-related internet business in the United States.  Among other for-profit services, it permits prospective adoptive parents to post their personal profiles in hopes of connecting with potential birth mothers.  They will not, however, permit same-sex couples to post their profiles.    

In 2002, the company refused to accept an application from San Jose residents Rich and Michael Butler, a same-sex couple who have been together eight years and who sought to post their profiles on one of’s websites.  


Witness: Discovery Of Araujo's Biological ID Was 'Unbelievable'
HAYWARD, Calif. -- Time seemed to freeze after a group of young men found out that the pretty teenager some of them had sex with was biologically male, a witness testified.

"Everything was like a standstill. Everything was so -- I would say unbelievable," said Paul Merel Jr., who was at the house the night the gender of Eddie "Gwen" Araujo was revealed.

Merel was the first witness called by the defense as the prosecution rested Tuesday in the case of three men charged with killing Araujo.

On trial are Michael Magidson, 23, Jose Merel and Jason Cazares, both 24.

Most of the details about Araujo's death have come from a fourth man, Jaron Nabors, who says he was present for much of the assault and had faced murder charges until he decided to plead guilty to manslaughter and testify against the others.


SurfControl Reports Unprecedented Growth in Hate and Violence Sites During First Four Months of 2004

Hate and Violence Sites Increase 26% Since January, Nearly 300% in Four Years

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif., May 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Web sites promoting hate
against Americans, Muslims, Jews, homosexuals and African-Americans, as well
as graphic violence have grown 26 percent since January, nearly surpassing the
growth in all of 2003, SurfControl's Global Content Team reported today. The
number of hate and violence sites has almost quadrupled in four years,
according to company statistics.


By Steven Fisher  

WASHINGTON - U.S. businesses are continuing to extend domestic partner health insurance benefits to gay and lesbian workers, with an average of three employers per day adding such coverage in 2003, according to an analysis released today by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. The report also shows a sharp increase in company policies prohibiting discrimination based on gender identity.

"Companies across America continue to recognize that a key to success is treating employees equally," said HRC President Cheryl Jacques. "By adding benefits and protections during a stormy economy, the private sector continues to demonstrate that treating employees fairly is good for the bottom line."

Overall, 1,067 private employers and colleges and universities added domestic partner benefits in 2003, including 25 of the Fortune 500, according to "The State of the Workplace for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Americans 2003." Thus, at the end of 2003, a total of 200 Fortune-listed companies, or 40 percent, offered domestic partner health insurance benefits.

"Companies that already offer domestic partner benefits are well-positioned to deal with legal marriage for same-sex couples," said Kim I. Mills, HRC's education director and editor of the report. "Companies that have yet to offer the benefits are well-advised to move forward."


Lowell clerk may ignore gay-marriage residency law

LOWELL City Clerk Richard Johnson said yesterday he may ignore new residency requirements for marriage license applicants, perhaps opening the door for out-of-state gay couples to get a license in the city.

City councilors said they are unlikely to step in and demand Johnson follow new marriage-license regulations, although they said they would prefer that Johnson not expose the city to legal challenges. Councilors appoint the clerk.

Last week, Gov. Mitt Romney's administration announced a number of new policies as the state prepares to become the first in the nation to allow homosexual couples to receive marriage licenses starting May 17.

One policy mandates that couples heterosexual and homosexual provide proof of residency. The administration said out-of-state gay couples will not be allowed to marry in Massachusetts because no other state recognizes same-sex marriages and licenses are not to be given to couples when their marriage would not be valid in their home state.


A Tennessee Senate committee approved a resolution Tuesday to amend the state constitution to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

That's already the law in Tennessee, but sponsoring lawmakers say they are trying to prevent courts from allowing homosexual marriages in other states from being recognized here.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved the legislation 7-to-zero. The resolution now moves to the Senate Finance Committee.

In the House, a resolution that includes the same language is on the floor after moving through committees. The amendment is still a long way from final approval. The soonest it could reach the voters is 2006


Gay couple denied marriage license
A Charlotte gay couple seeking a marriage license this morning at the Mecklenburg County Register of Deeds office was denied their request.

Gene and the Rev. Mick Hinson presented their application for a marriage license to Register of Deeds Judith Gibson, but were told state law wouldn't allow them to marry.

"Because you are of the same sex, we are prohibited from issuing a license by North Carolina law," Gibson said, then handed them a copy of the N.C. statute and a memo from a county attorney.

"So we're being denied at this time?" Mick Hinson asked.

"Yes sir," Gibson answered.


Gay Marriage Mayor Gets Vote Of Support
by Beth Shapiro Newscenter
(New Paltz, New York) A supporter of New Paltz, N.Y. mayor Jason West coasted to victory Tuesday in a special election for a seat on the village Board that was seen as a major test of the mayor's popularity.

Michael Zierler defeated West foe Rick Remsnyder by a wide margin.

West (pictured) had been criticized for his decision in February to begin marrying same-sex couples in the small village in the Hudson Valley north of New York City.

West was subsequently charged with 19 counts of violating New York State law  and placed under a court order not to perform more marriages.  The weddings went on though with two Unitarian ministers picking up where West left off.  When the ministers were also charged gay positive religious leaders around the country protested.


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