poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Monday, August 30, 2004

Gay marriage opponents win appeals court victory
By The Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS -- Supporters of a proposed constitutional ban on gay marriage in Louisiana won a legal ruling on Monday and the issue made its way to the state Supreme Court.

The 4th Circuit Court of Appeal overturned a New Orleans judge's ruling that the ban was unconstitutional and should be stripped from the Sept. 18 ballot.

The ruling was in one of three suits filed on behalf of a group called Forum for Equality. The suits argue that the "Defense of Marriage" amendment is unconstitutional because it would deprive unmarried couples -- gay or straight -- of the right to enter into certain contracts.


by: J Smith, OIA Newswire

The Human Rights Campaign and the National Black Justice Coalition called on President Bush today to repudiate anti-gay speakers at the Republican National Convention. HRC's Cheryl Jacques and National Black Justice Coalition's H. Alexander Robinson sent the following letter today to the President today:

Dear Mr. President,

As advocates for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) Americans, we are writing to you on a matter of grave concern.

We are deeply disturbed to learn that Donnie McClurkin, Sheri Dew and Bishop Keith Butler, who have made deeply offensive comments about GLBT Americans, will be featured at the Republican Convention and we urge you to repudiate their divisive and appalling comments.


Blame the Law: Section 377 Drives Gays Into A Twilight Zone

It takes a tragedy to make people sit up and take notice. Therefore, in the context of Pushkin Chandra's recent murder, it becomes imperative to examine the socio-legal situation regarding homosexuality in India.

It's not easy to be gay in our country. There is immense social stigma attached to it. Families and friends assume that everyone is heterosexual. The abuse starts the moment a young gay person realises his desires. He is suddenly confronted with his 'otherness'. He fails to see any recognition for his feelings, his instincts and his emotions. On the other hand, everything around him says he isn't normal, an aberration, someone who went wrong along the way.

It's hard to maintain your self-esteem in the face of such forceful opposition. Many gay men succumb to this rampant homophobia. Some become depressive, fragile and diffident. Others make choices to please others, they get married and repress their real desires for a lifetime. Very few are able to stand up to the onslaught and try living on their own terms. In a culture, which cannot support long-term stable same sex relationships, many of these men live a life in which they struggle to steal moments to love each other.

Now, consider this: Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code makes it a criminal act for two people of the same sex to love each other by sharing physical intimacy to express that love. A portion of the Section 377 defines "unnatural offences" as "whoever voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend up to 10 years and shall be liable to be fined". The term "unnatural offences" has been interpreted to include sodomy and oral sex.


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