poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Chicago gay bars boycott Coors Co.
By Steve Raabe
Denver Post Staff Writer

A group of gay-bar owners in Chicago has called for a renewed boycott of Coors Brewing Co. products because foundations that oppose gay rights are supported by Coors family members.

Coors Brewing has been a prominent supporter of gay rights in the workplace, acknowledged organizer Art Johnston, owner of Sidetrack, one of Chicago's biggest gay nightclubs.

"My issue is that Coors profits end up in family members' hands, and they have used that money to fund all kinds of anti- gay organizations," Johnston said.

He said the groups include the Heritage Foundation, the Castle Rock Foundation and the Free Congress Foundation.


Creek renamed in Burroughs' honor
By Richard Gintowt, writer
Wednesday, May 26, 2004
To some it's a ditch, a tributary or a concrete tunnel.
But the East Lawrence stream officially is now Burroughs Creek, in honor of famed Beat author William S. Burroughs, who once lived nearby.

The U.S. Geological Survey Board on Geographic Names has approved, 7-0, the proposed name change submitted last fall by the Lawrence City Commission on behalf of the Brook Creek Neighborhood Assn.

Formerly named the Atchison Topeka and Santa Fe Tributary, the new Burroughs Creek will appear on the USGS National Map within a couple of weeks.


Council considers changes
After group's pleas, city may update anti-discrimination laws

NEWARK -- Eight months after community members implored the city to step up efforts to make Newark a safe place for all individuals regardless of sexual orientation, the City Council on Thursday will consider updating its anti-discrimination laws.

Actions taken by the city to address discrimination were prompted by the urgings of Not in Newark, a group of parents, students and community leaders that formed after the 2002 slaying of a transgender teen.


S.F. married gays in legal limbo as courts deliberate
Even if state Supreme Court decides officials acted illegally, licenses could be valid for now
By Josh Richman, STAFF WRITER

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Supreme Court of California expressed serious concerns Tuesday about whether affirming San Francisco's authority to issue same-sex marriage licenses would invite other cities and counties to interpret, ignore or rewrite any state law however they see fit.

But the court also voiced serious misgivings about immediately invalidating more than 4,100 licenses already issued between Feb. 12 and March 11, lest doing so without hearing the licensed couples' pleas would violate their right to due process of law.

So it seems recent months' blizzard of briefs and Tuesday's two hours of argument could yield a split decision. San Francisco -- along with all other California cities and counties -- could be forbidden from violating state laws it believes unconstitutional, but a judgment on whether 8,000-plus people are legally married could be delayed either until they've had their day in court or until courts finally determine whether gays and lesbians have a constitutional right to marry.

That constitutional question was avoided Tuesday, per the Supreme Court's earlier order. Instead, it's being raised in a group of San Francisco Superior Court lawsuits that could take years to wend their way up to the high court's dais.


State Supreme Court will review timing of vote on gay marriage
Action favors Democrats,
who hope to resolve
issue before elections
By Matthew Franck
Post-Dispatch Jefferson City Bureau

JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri Supreme Court breathed life Tuesday into the Democrats' effort to seek an August vote on a proposed gay marriage ban.

The court ignored a Tuesday deadline that could have kept the issue off the ballot until November. Instead, the court agreed to weigh in on the vote's timing, setting a hearing on the issue for next week.

In the meantime, the high court put election officials across the state on notice, saying they should be ready to place the proposed constitutional amendment on the August ballot quickly if Democrats prevail.

Whether the vote takes place in August or November could affect several key political races - including the presidential contest. Many strategists say a large conservative voter turnout against gay marriage could hurt Democrats' chances in November. An August primary vote would have no such effect, since candidates of opposing parties won't be squaring off.

If the Supreme Court hadn't intervened Tuesday, a November vote would have seemed almost certain.



Government: more work should be done for gay equality
Ben Townley, UK

A spokesperson for the government has admitted there is more to be done in the fight for lesbian and gay equality.

Speaking at a Big Conversation event earlier this week, Women and Equality Minister Jacqui Smith said that while the past few years have seen many changes, the gay community is right to demand more.

"I am very proud to have played a part in this, but no-one would deny that there is more we can and should do," Smith told attendees.

She added that as well as changes in the law, changes that would alter society and the opinion of diversity across the country was vital in ensuring acceptance.


Gay rights groups hit out at Catholic "softened" stance
Ben Townley, UK

Attempts by the Catholic Church of England Wales to soften its stance on lesbian and gay people has been rejected by gay rights groups, who are claiming the Church is "cloaking its iron fist in a velvet glove".

The Church is publishing a pamphlet today outlining its "moral guidance" on issues as diverse as abortion, stem cell research and sexual diversity.

In the document, entitled "Cherishing Life", the church says that while "sexually expressed" same-sex relationship are wrong, Catholics have no right to see lesbian and gay people on the whole as sinful.

This is a direct movement away from the official Vatican stance on the issue; last summer the Pope issued a statement saying lesbian and gay people were immoral and strayed too far from the "natural moral law".


Bush opponent targets LGBT voters at US Pride events
Christopher Lisotta, Network

Senator John Kerry's US presidential campaign announced Tuesday it was launching a voter education program and a grassroots fund-raising project that specifically targets the LGBT community.

The first program, Pride Across America, is organised by the Kerry campaign in conjunction with the Democratic

National Committee (DNC). The plan is to have a presence at 60 pride events in 22 states over the next few months. Booths will be set up at Pride events across the US to help educate voters about Kerry's record, and manned by local campaign volunteers.

"It's exciting for us because it's an investment the campaign and the DNC are making in the LGBT community,"
said Mark Seifert, director of Kerry's LGBT outreach effort.

"We're buying tables at Pride, we're sending materials, we're buying ads in some [LGBT] newspapers. We think it's just another sign of John Kerry's commitment to the LGBT community, a commitment which began more than two decades ago."


Western program builds support for gays
By Sarah Kucharski

A program at Western Carolina University is working to improve support for gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered students and employees.

The Safe Zone workshop certifies participants to become Safe Zone representatives. These are people both on and off campus who assist those struggling with their sexual identity or who because of their sexual orientation have problems and can’t find the appropriate resources within the community.

For example, if a student’s coming out generated a disagreement within his or her family, perhaps causing that student to be financially cut off and no longer able to pay for school, Safe Zone representatives would work with that student to find alternate funding. Or assistance may come in the form of a shoulder to lean on.

The idea for a Safe Zone program grew out the interest of student leaders within the BGLAD organization in late spring of 2001 and formed through partnerships with the Lambda Youth Network, local homosexual support and activities group Out in the Mountains, St. David’s Episcopal Church, and university officials including the Office of the Chancellor.


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