poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Gay rights activists meet in Green Bay
By Anna Krejci

The policy against discrimination based on sexual orientation in the state's public schools became an argument in support of same-sex marriages at a gay rights activist meeting in Green Bay on Monday.

The meeting at Historic West Theatre was held in response to the constitutional amendment passed by the state Legislature in March that would ban gay marriages, domestic partnerships or civil unions.

Susan Allen, a Green Bay Southwest High School teacher who is a faculty co-advisor for the school's Gay Straight Alliance, said in 1986, Wisconsin was the first state to approve legislation protecting students from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

By banning same-sex marriage, the state will send an inconsistent message to students whose rights to education have been protected throughout their childhood, but who as soon as they become adults and want to be married, are no longer considered equal, she said.


Activists Blast President Bush for Hypocrisy

( - The Federal Marriage Amendment is dead on arrival in the U.S. Senate -- and President Bush knows it, one homosexual activist said.

Matt Foreman, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, blasted President Bush on Monday, after Bush said, "the sacred institution of marriage should not be redefined by a few activist judges."

"I say, Mr. President, you would not be living in the White House but for a 'few activist judges,'" Foreman said in a press release.

Without an independent judiciary, Foreman said, segregation would still be legal; abortion and interracial marriages would still be illegal; and poor people accused of crimes would have no right to legal counsel.


Gay Marriage: Three Possible Futures
All Things Considered audio

After the ceremony and celebration over gay marriages being licensed in Massachusetts, some are wondering what happens next. Opponents and advocates of same-sex marriage are all preparing for the next development. Hear NPR's Robert Siegel, Boston College professor Thomas Kohler, Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby and Jonathan Rauch, author of Gay Marriage: Why It Is Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America.


State won't recognize gay marriages, AG says
Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Alabama will not recognize the validity of same-sex marriages now taking place in Massachusetts, state Attorney General Troy King said Monday.

"We don't think that Alabama has any obligation to recognize homosexual marriages," King said in an interview. "State law would prevent us from doing that."

But King said there are scenarios in which he would act to defend Alabama laws.

If a same-sex couple married in another state moves to Alabama and then files a joint state tax return, that will be challenged, he said. "I would advise the Revenue Department they're not entitled to do that," King said. "Those marriages are not valid as marriages in the state of Alabama."

Another issue that could arise is spousal benefits, in areas such as Social Security or worker's compensation.


In California, the battle rages on several fronts
By BETTYE WELLS MILLER / The Press-Enterprise

The battle over same-sex marriage in California continues to heat up with opponents organizing protests this week in Los Angeles and Sacramento.

Next Tuesday the state Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on the legitimacy of thousands of same-sex marriages performed in San Francisco in March. And a bill legalizing gay marriage is working its way through the Assembly.

Same-sex marriage remains illegal in California.

The Campaign for California Families, which filed suit to stop San Francisco officials from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, is organizing protests at noon today at Pershing Square in downtown Los Angeles and at 1 p.m. Saturday at the State Capitol.


City High protest, counterprotest planned today
Westboro Baptist Church plans to bring about 15 protesters
By Mike McWilliams
Iowa City Press-Citizen

Despite contrary reports, a Kansas-based anti-gay church said it will protest City High's conferment of the Matthew Shepard Scholarship to a 16-year-old senior today. "It's not canceled," said Becky Phelps-Davis, a member and attorney of the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka. Phelps-Davis said up to 15 church members will protest the scholarship awarded to Ilse Bendorf.

The scholarship is awarded to gay students in honor of Shepard, a Wyoming college student who was beaten, tied to a fence and left for dead in 1998 because he was gay.

Faith Wilmot, co-chairwoman of the Hate Acts Rapid Response Team, said a "silent counter presence" is planned from 7:45 to 9:45 a.m. outside the school, 1900 Morningside Drive. Wilmot said the group is encouraged to wear red and white - City High's colors - and hoist signs that congratulate the graduating seniors

• To pledge money for the Hate Acts Rapid Response Team, send checks to: Iowa State Bank & Trust, P.O. Box 1700. Attn. Iowa City Affirms, Iowa City, Iowa, 52244. Checks should be made out to Iowa City Affirms.


Reaction in region to gay marriages: 'It's very exciting'
Community watches as couples make history in Massachusettes
By Joanna Poncavage
Of The Morning Call

Pennsylvania's gay community watched Monday as gay couples lined up in Massachusetts to apply for the first legally recognized marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples in the United States.

Elizabeth Bradbury and Patricia Sullivan of Allentown, partners for 16 years and coordinators of the Pennsylvania Gay and Lesbian Alliance, made sure they were witnesses.


Bush losing support in gay community over marriage-ban proposal
Chicago Tribune

DALLAS - (KRT) - In what promises to be a tight presidential race, gay voters believe they can make a difference in November, and rarely have they been as galvanized and unified as they are this election year, according to leaders of gay and lesbian political organizations.

The catalyst driving their increased efforts in lobbying, voter education and voter registration is the proposed Federal Marriage Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, a measure supported by President Bush. The 53-word document, which states, "Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman," is one of the potential wedge issues this year, particularly in the fiercely competitive so-called battleground states.

Massachusetts on Monday became the first state to legalize and perform marriages for same-sex couples, and the concept of "gay marriage" has become a potent political lightning rod. Across the country, five states have state constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage on their ballots this fall, and conservative groups are gathering signatures to get such initiatives on the ballots in at least five more states. Thirty-eight states already have laws banning same-sex marriage.

Many socially conservative and religious groups, key components of the Republican base, are energized by the prospect of a federal constitutional amendment they see as protecting traditional marriage and families. Gay and civil rights activists, parts of the Democratic base, also are mobilizing as never before, they say, against an amendment they view as writing discrimination into the Constitution.


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