poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Friday, October 29, 2004

Gay candidates ‘viable’ in races across country
Idaho, Carolinas eyed as ‘breakthrough’ states

Most gay political activists, like their straight counterparts, will likely be riveted to television sets Tuesday watching the returns in a presidential race expected to have a major impact on gay rights issues.

But a small cadre of gay election strategists and fund-raisers with the Washington, D.C.-based Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund plan to look toward the state houses in Idaho, Missouri, New Mexico, the Carolinas and other states, where a growing number of openly gay candidates are said to have a good chance of winning.

“The state legislatures are where the big battles over gay marriage and other issues of importance to our community are taking place,” said Dave DeCicco, the Victory Fund’s spokesperson. “Where there is not a single gay voice in a legislature, our community is not being heard.”

Twenty-eight gay candidates endorsed by the Victory Fund in state legislative races across the country enter balloting Nov. 2 with a good chance of winning, DeCicco said, following campaigns marked by gay-baiting as well as strong support from hometown newspapers and straight allies.


Heterosexuals have ‘overthrown’ marriage
Symposium papers discount ‘threat’ from gay couples

In a newly released collection of academic papers, sociologists, psychologists and historians argue that the institution of marriage has changed dramatically during the past century and that legalized same-sex marriage would have little or no impact on the viability of marriage in the future.

“In my view, marriage as we have known it for 5,000 years has already been overthrown,” said history professor Stephanie Coontz, who is writing a book on the history of marriage.

“But it was heterosexuals, not gays and lesbians, who accomplished this revolution,” she said in a paper called the “World Historical Transformation of Marriage.” “The demand of gays and lesbians for legal recognition of their unions is a symptom, not the cause, of how much and how irreversibly marriage has changed,” Coontz said


Newspapers oppose anti-gay amendments
Friday, October 29, 2004

A surprisingly large number of newspapers, even some with staunchly conservative reputations, have come out against state amendments to ban same-sex marriage and in some cases, any form of legal recognition of gay couples.

The traditionally conservative Arkansas Democrat Gazette wrote on Oct.17, “Most of us don’t want to deny homosexuals the right to share their pension benefits or inheritance rights or discriminate against them in economic matters, … but if this proposed amendment passes in Arkansas, such mutually beneficial arrangements may be illegal in the future. And the Legislature may never have a chance to do the fair and enlightened thing some day, as other states have done, and approve civil unions outside of marriage.”

The Salt Lake Tribune noted that proponents of Amendment 3 went “beyond the simple reservation of marriage to traditional couples” and instead sailed “into the murky waters of ‘domestic union’ and ‘substantially equivalent.’ There be dragons. Or, at least, litigious lawyers and activist judges enough to frighten even the strongest legal eagles.”

All the top dailies in North Dakota have come out against that state’s proposed amendment.


School group OKs gay literature
By Deidre Bello
Iowa City Press-Citizen

SOLON -- A smile spread across Sue Protheroe's face Thursday as, one by one, members of a review committee agreed to keep gay-themed literature in her eighth-grade curriculum.

For the past month, Protheroe has been under fire for including the controversial literature in her language arts class at Solon Middle School. Despite the heated discussion it has spurred in the community, she said she has been receiving about 15 e-mails a day, letters and phone calls of support from across the nation. She said she was not surprised with the committee's recommendation.


Governor to back gay marriage ban in radio ad
By Joe Biesk

FRANKFORT -Gov. Ernie Fletcher is going to be heard on radio commercials across the state starting today supporting a proposed amendment to ban same-sex marriages.

Fletcher will be encouraging Kentuckians to vote "yes" on the measure, and telling voters that both he and first lady Glenna Fletcher intend to do the same, said Kent Ostrander, executive director of the Lexington-based Family Foundation


Lesbian seeks damages for partner’s death

A LANDMARK legal action was launched yesterday that may have profound implications on how lesbian relationships are viewed under the law.

A woman is seeking damages against a drink-driver jailed for causing the death of her female partner in a road accident.


ACLU accuses LA school officials of harassing gay students
The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- A lawsuit filed in federal court Thursday accuses teachers, administrators and other employees of a Los Angeles high school of harassing gay and lesbian students and staff members.

The Washington Preparatory High School staff has created "a climate rife with hostility toward and discrimination against students and staff based on their actual or perceived sexual orientation," according to the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court by the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California.

The action asks that discrimination at the school end and that the Los Angeles Unified School District be ordered to "institute proper training procedures for all staff to put an end to the hostile and intolerant school environment."

School district attorney Kevin Reed denied any such behavior exists, adding the district is a national leader in providing a safe environment for gay, lesbian, transgender and bisexual students. He said the school also has offered numerous training programs for its staff, including three at Washington Preparatory High School in the past year.


Interracial-marriage ban used in Measure 36 comparisons
Some say the 1862 law is related; others say it's not
Statesman Journal

Much of Oregon's marriage law remains intact from 1862, but the ban on interracial marriages is long gone.

Yet some of the arguments for and against that earlier ban have resurfaced during the debate about Measure 36, which would write into the Oregon Constitution a ban on marriage by same-sex couples.

Voters will decide the fate of Measure 36 in Tuesday's election.


Inquiry after offensive emails are found on police computers
David Ward
The Guardian

Merseyside's chief constable launched an inquiry yesterday after "grossly offensive" emails about gay people, women and black people were found on a police computer system.

Thirty-five members of staff, 22 police officers and 13 support workers are to be investigated and could face disciplinary action, including the sack.

The messages were said to range from the mildly funny to the "disgusting".

Chief constable Bernard Hogan-Howe's inquiry is supported by the Merseyside Police Federation and the Merseyside Black Police Association.


Gay rights issue signs targeting blacks ruled OK
By Gregory Korte
Enquirer staff writer

A yard sign asking African-American voters to "save civil rights and marriage" by voting no on a Cincinnati gay rights issue is not false and confusing, the Ohio Elections Commission found Thursday.

The unanimous ruling of a four-member panel was a victory for the Equal Rights Not Special Rights campaign, a conservative group opposed to Issue 3 on the ballot next Tuesday.

Issue 3 would repeal Article XII from the city's charter - a move proponents say would make Cincinnati more tolerant by allowing City Council to protect gays and lesbians from discrimination.


Homosexuality Dispute: African Priests Will No Longer Train in the West

Nairobi, Kenya ( - Anglican Church leaders in Africa have decided they will no longer send priests to the United States and Europe for training, so as not to expose them to teachings that condone same-sex "marriage" and ordination of homosexuals.

"We have to find ways of developing our own theology," Archbishop Peter Akinola, the head of the Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa, told a summit of 300 bishops meeting in Lagos, Nigeria.


U. Senate opposes ban on gay marriage in Georgia
By Chris Megerian
Staff Writer

In a decision praised by President James W. Wagner, the University Senate unanimously passed a resolution opposing the wording of Amendment One to the Georgia Constitution.

“The resolution is consistent with Emory’s values, including our value of full disclosure and debate,” Wagner wrote in an e-mail to the Wheel. “It is the proper position for Emory to take, in my view.”

The Senate passed the resolution because, while the question of whether to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman does appear on the ballot, Section B of the amendment, which would make civil unions or any marriage benefits for same-sex couples impossible, does not.


Black gay film festival debuts Sunday
By Ron Wynn

Noah's Arc, a comedy about the adventures of four friends in Los Angeles, will have its official premiere Sunday as the concluding feature in the first annual black gay film festival. The event, which also includes four other movies and a step show, begins at noon Sunday and is being billed as Nashville Black Pride: An Afternoon at the Theatre.


YSU trustees OK benefits for same-sex partners
Four of nine voting trustees expressed concerns about rising benefit costs.

YOUNGSTOWN — Four days before Ohio voters will decide on a marriage-protection ballot issue, Youngstown State University has become the fifth public university in the state to extend health benefits to same-sex domestic partners.


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