poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Friday, July 02, 2004

Eunuchs in Bangalore protest against police atrocities
Hundreds of eunuchs and human rights activists took to the streets in Bangalore on Friday to protest against the alleged atrocities committed by policemen against a eunuch. Bangalore cops had allegedly molested Kokila, a eunuch who went to lodge a complaint with police after she was gangraped by 10 men, last month. Elavarthi Manohar, founder of Sangama, an NGO fighting for the cause of minority groups, said the government should take immediate action against the four policemen who tortured Kokila, and demanded their suspension. "Today we are protesting against the police who have tortured Kokila, a bisexual woman. We are demanding that the four policemen who are involved in the torture and sexual abuse of her should be immediately suspended. This is our demand," said Manohar.

Manohar also demanded the government repeal Section 377 of Indian Penal Code, which disqualifies intercourse against the order of nature, and grant womanhood status to the Hijras.

Meanwhile, federal crime branch authorities are investigating the allegations of torture made by Kokila.

Eunuchs, known as "hijras", are males castrated at puberty but are normally referred in India as "she"


Kennedy asks appeals court to invalidate recess appointment
Associated Press

WASHINGTON - Sen. Edward Kennedy is trying for the third time to persuade the colleagues of federal appellate Judge William Pryor to bump him from the bench.

The Massachusetts Democrat is asking the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta to rule that President Bush's appointment of Pryor, a former Alabama attorney general, in February during a congressional recess was unconstitutional.

"Immediate consideration of this issue is critical: Judge Pryor has already sat or is scheduled to sit on over 60 cases, all of which may have to be reheard and re-decided if his appointment is ultimately adjudged invalid," Kennedy said in a brief filed in a case about police immunity from lawsuits.

He plans to mount a similar argument in another case that has been appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, Kennedy aide James Flug said


Gay rights worker praises trial judge
Prison term for killers is welcomed

An Ulster judge was praised today for his handling of a brutal "gay bashing" murder case.

The comments came from the head of the Northern Ireland Gay Rights Association after two teenagers were jailed yesterday for the savage killing of Co Armagh man Ian Flanagan.

Mr Flanagan, originally from Keady in Armagh, was beaten with a wheel brace and stabbed with a knife by two thugs who set out to attack and rob a gay man because they calculated the crime would not be reported to police.

After the killing in south Belfast, the pair were seen covered in blood and laughing.


Gay churchman's job offer withdrawn

A cathedral verger had a job offer retracted shortly after it was revealed that he lived with his homosexual partner, it was claimed today.

Lee Taylor, a verger at England's Southwark Cathedral in London, applied for the position of assistant verger at St Davids Cathedral in Pembrokeshire in May this year.

He claimed he was offered the job verbally by the Dean of the Cathedral, the Very Rev Wyn Evans, but the offer was rescinded when Mr Taylor said his live-in partner would be joining him, The Times newspaper reported.

“I went from feeling successful when they offered me the job to feeling very unworthy,” he told the paper.


Could openly gay service members eventually fight in Iraq?

If the United States were to reenact the draft for the first time since the Vietnam War--in order to ease the strain on operations in Iraq and Afghanistan--openly gay men and lesbians would likely be required to serve whether they wanted to or not, military experts tell

The Defense Department is certainly feeling the burden of fighting two wars. This week it reassigned 5,700 additional soldiers to National Guard and Reserve units to be sent to Iraq and Afghanistan. And lawmakers, such as Republican senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, continue to call for the draft to be reinstated. New York Democratic representative Charles Rangel argues that it would produce a more demographically balanced force and introduced a bill last year that would require mandatory service for all draft-age American men and women. South Carolina Democratic senator Ernest Hollings has introduced a companion bill in the Senate.

A.J. Rogue, national president of American Veterans for Equal Rights, agrees. "The recalling of reservists and retirees is the first step in reinstating the draft. What makes it easy is the fact that young males and females are now required to register," he says. "This makes it really easy to get the draft going again--it's just a simple matter of notifying everyone registered."

If those efforts are successful, the Defense Department would have to determine how to mesh "don't ask, don't tell" with the draft for the first time in its history. Most likely, in 2004 gay men and lesbians would be bound for boot camp.


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