poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Trans March invites Araujo family
Organizers want to support kin of transgender slaying victim
By Melissa Evans, STAFF WRITER

SAN FRANCISCO -- Tuesday's mistrial in the case against three men accused of killing a Newark transgender teenager comes at an emotional time as thousands prepare to celebrate gay pride this weekend in San Francisco.

Organizers of the upcoming march and rally already had planned a kickoff event Friday night at Dolores Park. The "Trans March" now will include the family of the slaying victim, who was born Eddie Araujo but had been living as a young woman named Gwen.

"I think all of us were hoping there would be a resolution (in the trial)," said Chris Daley of the Transgender Law Center, which is helping organize the event. "No one will be celebrating the end of a murder trial ... but we'd hoped there had been strong convictions."

An Alameda County judge declared a mistrial Tuesday after jurors could not agree on the charges against Michael Magidson of Fremont and Newark residents Jason Cazares and Jose Merel.


Transgender community talks about effects
By Katherine Corcoran
Mercury News

Marcus Arana was so angry, he cried.

Tina D'Elio, a director in Communities United Against Violence, was encouraged.

There was no simple way Wednesday to sum up the reaction to the mistrial declared in the nationally followed murder case of Newark transgender teen Gwen Araujo.

While many couldn't believe that the jury was deadlocked on what they saw as clear-cut evidence, many also read the details as encouraging.

``It's hard to understand how a jury could hear that information and not come to a conclusion of first-degree murder,'' said Arana, a San Francisco Human Rights Commission investigator who is transgender. ``Having said all that, I'm optimistic about the fact that acquittal or manslaughter wasn't an option with those jurors.''


City to open parades to all
By David Waite
Advertiser Courts Writer

Parades and other events sponsored or co-sponsored by the city would be open to virtually anyone who wants to participate under a new set of rules being drafted by the city.

The new rules are part of a settlement between the city and the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawai'i, which sued the city last year on behalf of six Honolulu residents and three gay rights organizations.

The proposed settlement terms were placed on the record in federal court yesterday.


Cape Coral woman banned from teaching after marrying partner
Associated Press

FORT MYERS, Fla. - A 62-year-old Cape Coral woman who married her lesbian partner in Massachusetts was banned from teaching in the Church of Christ, Scientist, after she refused to "repent" for her actions.

Kathleen Clementson returned her teaching credentials and left the church. Her former students are now considered by the Christian Science board of directors to have had no primary instruction.

Clementson married Suzanne Nightingale, 49, also of Cape Coral, on a public beach on May 20, before Massachusetts started banning out-of-state same-sex couples from obtaining marriage licenses. The women have since bought a townhouse in that state, and said they plan to move there.

An Associated Press photo taken at the service was sent to newspapers around the world, and many people recognized Clementson's name in connection with the church, she said.


UK MEP backs suspended mayor
Ben Townley, UK

A MEP for London has slammed the French authorities for suspending the mayor at the centre of the country's same-sex marriage row.

Jean Lambert says she is "demanding an explanation" from French embassy officials for the suspension of mayor Noel Mamere after he married a gay couple earlier this month.

The Green MEP and a member of the European Parliament's Civil Liberties Committee added that Mamere, who is also a member of the Green party, should be reinstated immediately since his actions were a "brave step" towards fighting homophobia.

"M Mamere's actions should be praised as progressive step towards stamping out homophobic discrimination - not condemned," Lambert says.


Gays turn out at Parliament
Big showing of gay people at Parliament today to hear first reading of Civil Union Bill- will go to a conscience vote

Gays have turned out in force at Parliament today to listen to the historic first reading of a bill which will allow them to walk up the aisle.

The Civil Union Bill is being debated and MPs are being given a conscience vote on it.

The Bill's sponsor, Associate Justice Minister David Benson-Pope, says the Bill is about human rights by giving equality to any couples.

Mr Benson-Pope says the Civil Union Bill's time has come.


Church hosts same-sex marriage

St. Paul's Church in Valley Cottage last night hosted a discussion of same-sex marriage to clarify the Roman Catholic Church's position on the issue.

More than 50 people attended the 90-minute meeting, which at times became heated.

"There is such a thing as true marriage, and it includes a union between one man and one woman," the Rev. Joseph Giandurco said of the church's beliefs. "That is what marriage is and has been understood to be for thousands of years by every culture and every society."

Giandurco, a professor of canon law at St. Joseph's Seminary in Yonkers, was one of the invited speakers. He mentioned President Bush's views on same-sex marriage and recited excerpts from a speech he made earlier this year.


FG Civil Partnership policy sets out rights for cohabiting couples - Terry
Discuss Justice on the Forum

Fine Gael's Civil Partnership proposals will allow cohabiting couples - of either the same sex or of opposite sex - to formally register their relationship with the State, Fine Gael Equality Spokesperson, Senator Sheila Terry said today (Thursday) at the policy launch.

"Fine Gael has set out a number of fundamental rights that couples will be awarded upon registration, including:

· Succession
Should a partner die intestate, the surviving partner will be entitled to his/her entire estate, and will not be liable to inheritance tax. If the deceased partner has children (perhaps from a previous relationship) this automatic entitlement is reduced to one third. (and more)


PTA's progress toward inclusion

Sometimes, progress happens in fits and starts.

The on-again, off-again, on-again invitation from the National PTA to a national gay advocacy group is one of those times.

The group, Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), initially tried to participate in the PTA's national conference several years ago to raise awareness about anti-gay bullying. At first its leaders were met with silence. Last year, they were invited to submit a proposal. Then their proposal was rejected.

But this story has a happy ending. The PTA finally agreed to let PFLAG put on a workshop at its conference in Anaheim, Calif., on Saturday.


it looks like those in SA is still up to segragation... and trans folks again get excluded... thats funny.. it sounds like HRC

Gay group kicks transvestites out

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance's national executive has barred transvestites and cross-dressers from membership and has expelled two members of its board who are from those groups.

"To cross dress or change one's sex is not a qualifying factor to be part of the lesbigay orientation. Men dressing as women or women dressing as men harm the image of the lesbigay community," it said.

The party said Lesbigays were "average people" with only a single identifying aspect, namely same-sex orientation and it believed "most South Africans will welcome our decision".

But Marcus Pillay of Siyazenzela, a body that fights racism, homophobia and other prejudice against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersexed people, said this was discriminatory.


N.C. voters back gay union ban

As some lawmakers push for a state constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, a new poll suggests that most North Carolina voters would back such a proposal.

A survey this month of likely voters found that 56 percent favored prohibiting gay marriage through an amendment, 38 percent disagreed and the remaining 6 percent were not sure.

The poll, of 600 likely voters, was conducted for a partnership of The News & Observer, WRAL-TV and WUNC Radio by Research 2000 of Rockville, Md.

"I have no doubt that there's a majority of support for a state amendment," said Del Ali, president of Research 2000.


Record 5 Gay Bills Simultaneously Move Forward In Cal Leg While Anti-Gay Bill Dies 
by Mark Worrall Newscenter

(Sacramento, California)  Six pieces of legislation affecting California's gay community were heard yesterday in legislative committees. Five beneficial bills dealing with workplace harassment and discrimination, health care, domestic partnership rights and recognition of LGBT veterans were approved in their respective committees, and a discriminatory resolution in favor of the so-called “Federal Marriage Amendment” died. 

It is believed to be the largest number of gay bills to be dealt with in a single day in the legislature.

The Omnibus Labor and Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 2004 passed the Senate Judiciary Committee 4-1 on a party-line vote with broad support from labor, legal, and civil rights organizations. The bill, authored by  Assemblyman John Laird (D-Santa Cruz) will standardize about 30 labor and employment non-discrimination provisions to make them consistent with the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). 

The bill now moves to the State Senate Appropriations Committee. A companion bill authored by Assemblyman Laird that would extend third-party harassment protections to the FEHA provisions, passed the Senate Judiciary Committee on a 4-1 vote.


Police sack homophobic recruits

Senior police officers condemned the pair and vowed that the Metropolitan Police "will not tolerate homophobia".

The unnamed trainees admitted pushing a number of "offensive notes" under the door of another recruit.

They were dismissed for misconduct over the incident at the Hendon police training centre last July.

They were confronted during an internal investigation launched after the recruit complained to training staff.

Detective Chief Superintendent Phil Flower, head of the Met's internal misconduct process, said the comments represented "entirely unacceptable conduct from anyone who would aspire to become a police officer".


British Gay Partners Win Landmark Ruling
By Peter Moore

(London) In a stunning victory for same-sex couples in Britain the highest judicial body in the country has ruled that gay partners have the same rights as heterosexual couples.

In settling a long-running legal battle, the House of Lords rejected an appeal by a landlord who claimed a gay man could not inherit the tenancy rights of his partner after he died.

Citing the Human Rights Act, four of the five Law Lords ruled that a gay couple had the same legal rights as a married couple.

"Homosexual relationships can have exactly the same qualities of intimacy, stability and inter-dependence that heterosexual relationships do," said Baroness Hale writing for the majority.


Test vote likely on gay 'marriage'
By Amy Fagan

House leaders are likely to hold a test vote on issues related to homosexual "marriage" to show where House members stand before they push ahead with an actual constitutional amendment.

    Options under discussion for a House vote, Republican aides said, include legislation that would strip federal courts of their jurisdiction to hear cases regarding the definition of marriage, and a measure that would define marriage in the District of Columbia as being between a man and a woman.

    A House Republican leadership aide explained that voting first on legislation like this is a way to "flesh out where the votes are" and let leaders and outside groups target members who vote no, in order to persuade them to support the constitutional amendment later on.
  Rep. Joe Pitts, Pennsylvania Republican, said he and other backers of the constitutional amendment "don't have a complete read" on where members stand on it, and an initial vote on related legislation would help them identify who to target.


French lawmakers pass antihomophobia bill

A bill to outlaw homophobia in France was approved by the French government on Wednesday, Agence France-Presse reports. The bill, which will go before parliament next month, will make "incitement to discrimination, hatred, or violence against a person on the basis of gender or sexual orientation" punishable by a year in prison and a $54,000 fine. The proposed law was conceived in the wake of a vicious attack on a gay man who was badly burned earlier this year. It puts sexist and homophobic remarks on the same criminal level as words encouraging racism or anti-Semitism.

At the weekly cabinet meeting President Jacques Chirac said he hopes the law would "bring to an abrupt end these very serious acts," his spokesman told Agence France-Presse. Justice minister Dominique Perben said the proposed law owes much to the story of Sebastian Nouchet, who was attacked at his home in northern France in January and sprayed with petrol. "This law is in some way the Nouchet law," he said. The bill enters the process of ratification just after the center-right government took steps to punish a mayor--Green Party politician Noël Mamère--who earlier this month performed France's first-ever same-sex marriage ceremony.


Anti-gay pride resolution fails in Arkansas

An alderman in Conway, Ark., had about 200 loud supporters behind him for a resolution to denounce a gay pride parade scheduled for this weekend, but not one of his colleagues on the city council would second his call for a vote on Tuesday. Alderman Sandy Brewer's proposal was to dissociate the city from the parade planned for Sunday, the 35th anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York's Greenwich Village. The resolution would not have carried any legal weight but would have called the parade "a potentially divisive and disruptive activity" that the city would "neither encourage nor condone." The crowd complained vociferously when the other aldermen met Brewer's proposal with silence, never seconding the motion and therefore not opening the floor to debate.
Parade organizers John Schenck and Robert Loyd welcomed the public response, saying it was good to begin discussing the issue. Schenck and Loyd live in a bright pink house in Conway and held a public commitment ceremony on the steps of the state capitol in Little Rock earlier this year.


New Mexico's highest court to hear same-sex marriage case

The New Mexico supreme court has requested written legal arguments from the attorney general's office in a dispute over a county clerk's issuance of marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Sandoval County clerk Victoria Dunlap asked the court earlier this month to dismiss a temporary restraining order preventing her from handing out more marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples. The court, in a one-page order on Monday, directed the state to file written arguments by July 6 responding to Dunlap's petition before the justices. Asst. Atty. Gen. Chris Coppin said Wednesday that he had not seen the court's order but that the attorney general's office would file its response by the deadline. He would not discuss how that response would read. The court typically seeks responses from parties in a case before determining how to proceed. No hearing has been scheduled in the case.

Dunlap issued 66 marriage licenses to same-sex couples on February 20. She contends that New Mexico laws support same-sex marriages and that she should be allowed to resume issuing licenses to same-sex couples. The attorney general's office contends that state law limits marriage in New Mexico to a man and a woman.


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