poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Saturday, April 10, 2004

Greater Gay Acceptance Poll Shows
by Newscenter Staff
(Los Angeles, California) Gays and lesbians have come a long way down the road to full acceptance but same-sex marriage continues to be a stumbling block a new poll shows.

The survey by the Los Angeles Times shows that almost seven in 10 Americans know someone who is gay or lesbian and say they would not be troubled if their elementary school-age child had a gay teacher. Six in 10 say they are sympathetic to the gay community.

When it comes to marriage, a majority of people remain opposed, but 59% of respondents nationwide said they believe legal recognition of marriage for same-sex couples is inevitable.   

In less that 25 years the attitudes of Americans towards gays and lesbians has steadily evolved. In the first L.A. Times poll on gays in 1985, only 46 percent of respondents said they knew someone who was gay and the idea of gay marriage was unfathomable.


Same-sex weddings continue in New Paltz
NEW PALTZ, N.Y. -- Five ministers married 16 same-sex couples Saturday in this Hudson Valley village, two weeks after a similar group of ceremonies in defiance of authorities who have charged two ministers with performing such ceremonies without a license.
There were no arrests and eight people showed up briefly to protest, said James Fallarino, a spokesman for the organizers. The presiding clergy included three Universalist Unitarian ministers, one from the United Church of Christ and an Interfaith minister, he said.


Gay Marriage: What Are Conservatives Afraid Of?
By Scott C. Smith

Republicans like to talk about the "sacred" institute of marriage, and they believe that by allowing homosexuals to marry, it will destroy this sacred institution.

Hey, guys, it's already been destroyed. By heterosexuals. We've been running the show for a long time now, and the damage has been done. The fact that I can perform a ceremony with no formal education or training is proof enough that marriage is not as sacred as Republicans make it out to be. I think homosexuals might have a real shot at actually repairing the foundation of marriage. A real shot if we'd let them.

In the United States, a gay couple that has been together 20 years cannot get married. Yet a convict serving a 20-year sentence in prison can - even a prisoner on death row! Just think: you can commit horrible crimes against humanity, but as long as you're heterosexual, you don't lose your right to get married. You know, if I had to choose, I'd think the convict would do more damage to the institution of marriage than the gay couple with a murder-free background. Call it a hunch.


Anti-gay billboards indicative of culture clash in N.C. town
ASHEVILLE, N.C. - The billboard worker owed money he didn't have, so to erase his debt, he let his creditor cover six billboards with a biblical passage condemning homosexuality. That backfired spectacularly for the employee. When sign company executives saw them some weeks ago, they fired the worker and papered over the unauthorized messages.


Rally in Central Park supports same-sex marriage prohibition
Supporters of a stalled bill in the Kentucky House that would prohibit same-sex marriages gathered Saturday in Central Park to air their concerns.


2 local ministers targeting same-sex marriage
DURHAM -- Two local ministers have joined Durham's gay marriage debate, asking a judge to let them challenge two men seeking a marriage license because the county attorney cannot adequately do so.

In a motion filed Thursday, the Revs. Ernest Ferrell and Gregory Clark asked to intervene in the lawsuit that Durham residents Richard Mullinax and Perry Pike filed March 22 after Durham County Register of Deeds Willie Covington rejected their marriage license application.

The next day, County Attorney Chuck Kitchen filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, arguing that the couple's attorney had filed it in the wrong court. The suit should have been filed in Superior Court, not District Court, because the couple is trying to compel a public official to issue them a license, Kitchen said. The case is scheduled to be heard May 10


Clerks will get license training
By Thea Singer
City and town clerks can expect to receive training on issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples starting next month, according to the governor's office.
     ``We anticipate holding training sessions for them (the clerks) in early May - well in advance of the May 17 start date for gay marriage,'' said Gov. Mitt Romney's communications director Eric Fehrnstrom.
      In the meantime, Provincetown has instituted its own policy. Unless they're told otherwise, as of May 17, the day same-sex marriage becomes legal in Massachusetts, town officials plan to issue licenses to residents and nonresidents alike who complete the Department of Public Health's Notice of Intention of Marriage.

Gay marriage ban would enforce inequality
I have debated numerous times if I actually would write this. After hearing of the recent articles in the newspaper regarding comments made by Laurel Rep. Jeff Laszloffy and the Montana Family Coalition, I hope that my voice might be able to reach some people and promote a little more understanding.


Penalties for issuing gay marriage licenses not likely
PHOENIX (AP) -- Some opponents of gay marriage wanted to impose criminal penalties on Arizona officials who might issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Their proposal to make it a misdemeanor to grant gay marriage licenses, however, won't likely get off the ground at the Legislature.

Bethany Lewis, a lobbyist for the Center for Arizona Policy, which pushed the legislation, said she wasn't sure whether any court clerks in Arizona had considered issuing gay marriage licenses.

"It was more just the principle," Lewis said, noting some officials in a handful of states have issued marriage licenses to gay couples.


here are some examples of the same article and how is was headlined across the world.. and if you read the poll.. nothing new.. about what is excepted.. but put god in the picture and you have a big story and every news station is running with it.. its big news.. gods on their side.. not my gods and goddess and deities.. but there god... I thought there was a separation of church and state... oh foolish me..

Poll: Most American oppose gay marriage but support other rights
Sarasota Herald-Tribune, FL

Poll: Most Americans Oppose Gay Marriage
Wilkes Barre Times-Leader, PA

Most Americans Believe Homosexuality Is 'Against God's Will'
The Scotsman, UK

Most Americans believe gays 'against God's will'
ic Wales, UK

New Poll on Gay Marriage
KPIX-TV 5, United States

Poll: Most American oppose gay marriage but support other rights
Most Americans oppose gay marriage and many believe homosexuality is "against God's will" but otherwise consider themselves tolerant of gays, according to a Los Angeles Times poll published Saturday.

By a margin of 55 to 41 percent, those surveyed agreed with the statement that "if gays are allowed to marry, the institution of marriage will be degraded." About half favored a U.S. constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union between a man and a woman, while 42 percent were opposed, according to the poll published on the newspaper's Web site.

Police get check from gay-marriage allies
Organizers pay $2,000 for service
By Gabriel J. Wasserman
Poughkeepsie Journal

NEW PALTZ -- Organizers of same-sex marriages in New Paltz have delivered $2,000 for police services associated with the controversial nuptials.

But the costs accrued by town police have surpassed $13,000, and reimbursement funds are not assured for many of the expenses.

''We just received the bills last night so we have to go through them still,'' said James Fallarino, a spokesman for the New Paltz Equality Initiative. ''We'd like to make another installment in the next few weeks.''


Gay marriage foe eyes run for House
By Raphael Lewis, Globe Staff,
Ronald A. Crews, the former Georgia state lawmaker who has spearheaded the push to ban gay marriage in Massachusetts, has taken initial steps to run as a Republican for the congressional seat now held by US Representative James P. McGovern, a four-term Democrat, state officials said yesterday.


City parking manager is headed to Florida
By David Callender and Judith Davidoff
Madison Parking Manager Robin Williams, who came under fire last year for allegedly discriminating against gay and lesbian employees of the city's parking utility, has resigned.


Triangle YMCA says same-sex Duke employees cannot join
The Associated Press
The Triangle YMCA says it "respectfully disagrees" with Duke University's understanding that same-sex couples can join the group at a discounted family rate. YMCA officials also have asked to meet with Duke representatives.

Duke officials reiterated Friday that if the agency does not change its policy, then university officials will end the university's relationship with the YMCA of the Triangle.

In a March 30 letter to the YMCA, Duke officials said the university's agreement with the agency gives Duke employees and their dependents discounted memberships. In exchange, Duke promotes the health and fitness agency in its literature, on its Web site and in employee materials.


Man charged in attack on homosexual
By Bill Hetherman , Staff Writer
WEST COVINA -- A Baldwin Park man is charged with attempted murder for allegedly stabbing a gay man 22 times March 16 after having sex with him. Cirilo Aguayo, 18, will be in West Covina Branch Superior Court on Monday for a preliminary hearing. He also is charged with burglary and allegations the victim was attacked because of his sexual orientation. Aguayo is being held on $1 million bail and faces up to life in prison if convicted. Deputy Public Defender Ronald Whitenhill could not be reached for comment Friday.


Few in Congress back gay marriage
Barney Frank claims at least 50 in House favor full rights
WASHINGTON — The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest gay civil rights group, is studying the ebb and flow of every development surrounding the status in Congress of a proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage.

“We’re mobilizing all of our resources to defeat it,” said Winnie Stachelberg, HRC’s political director. But when asked if she knows how many members of Congress support legal recognition of same-sex marriage on its own merits, separate from the question of a constitutional amendment, Stachelberg pauses.


Friday, April 09, 2004

Study: Dramatic spike in antigay state legislation

An unprecedented number of antigay measures were introduced during current legislative sessions in 44 states, according to a groundbreaking new study released to by the gay rights group Human Rights Campaign. The report, to be published on April 12, provides the most complete picture yet of a growing antigay legislative backlash in light of the increasing national debate over legal rights and protections for gays and lesbians. At least 230 gay-related bills were put forth in 2003-2004, compared with 140 in the 2002-2003 legislative sessions. "We have clearly seen a big jump in the number of bills at the state level," said Seth Kilborn, national field director for HRC. "And we are seeing a mixed bag of results in terms of how all of that legislation is dealt with. We were very disappointed in Georgia, where the legislature sent [a proposed constitutional ban on same-sex marriage] to the voters. But, on the other hand, in Indiana and Arizona, legislators declined to consider an amendment."

Most of the bills getting attention in 2004 dealt with relationship recognition and marriage rights for same-sex couples. At publication of the report, there were 99 marriage-related bills introduced in 37 states. Ninety-one of those sought to restrict or ban marriage and other rights for same-sex couples. The other eight sought to provide some level of marriage equality. Sixteen states introduced resolutions urging Congress to pass the Federal Marriage Amendment, which would write a ban on same-sex marriage into the U.S. Constitution, and two of those--Alabama and Virginia--passed theirs. One jurisdiction, the District of Columbia, has a pending resolution calling on Congress to defeat the proposed amendment.


Arizona debates penalizing clerks who issue marriage licenses to gay couples

Some opponents of gay marriage in Arizona want to impose criminal penalties on officials who issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Their proposal to make issuing same-sex marriage licenses a misdemeanor, however, likely won't get off the ground in the legislature.


Gay Equality Measure Defeated At Banking Chain
by Newscenter Staff
(Cincinnati, Ohio) Shareholders at one of the largest regional banks in the country have rejected a call for the inclusion of sexuality in the company's human rights code.

The issue was voted on at the annual meeting of Fifth Third Bank which has 21,000 employees servicing 5.5 million customers in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, West Virginia, Tennessee and Florida.


Rally held in support of antigay amendment to Arkansas constitution

A Little Rock, Ark., minister spoke at a rally on the steps of the state capitol on Friday and declared that the country was strong because it values the traditional family, with an opposite-sex couple at its core. The rally, at which the Reverend Charles E. Williams spoke, was sponsored by the Coalition for Family and American Values, which supports a proposed amendment to the state constitution that would ban same-sex marriages.


Iowa governor's appointee to school board accused of pushing "gay agenda"

The Iowa senate education committee on Thursday questioned whether a Des Moines gay activist would try to push a "homosexual agenda" if appointed to the state school board.

"Absolutely not," was the response from Jonathan Wilson, a Des Moines attorney who was nominated by Gov. Tom Vilsack to sit on the nine-member board. "I hope that I would be able to put to rest some of those concerns, to give [lawmakers] both my credentials as an Iowan and my credentials in terms of public education and my commitment to public education," Wilson said. "They have got to strike that balance...between being political and being a leader." Vilsack has called the holdup of the nomination discriminatory.


Knight Backtracks On Gay Unions
by Mary Ellen Peterson Newscenter
(San Francisco, California) It isn't an epiphany, more likely the ability over a long political career in California to smell the winds of change, but longtime gay foe Pete Knight is sensing he can't win the battle against same-sex couples.

Twice in the past week the Republican state senator from Palmdale has indicated he would be willing to support domestic partnerships in California.  It isn't support for gay marriage, but for Knight, it is a major concession.

Gay man sues Catholics over job
LONDON, April 9 (UPI) -- A homosexual social worker who was offered a job by a Roman Catholic group but then denied the job is suing church officials in Britain. The 27-year-old man had been hired by Apostleship of the Sea, a Catholic group that visits ships docked in British ports to minister to sailors, the Independent reported Friday. But when the charity learned of the man's relationship with another man, the job was withdrawn, according to this week's The Tablet magazine, a Catholic weekly.


Bloch says OSC will process gay bias claims
The Office of Special Counsel will process claims of sexual orientation discrimination, even if they are not based on conduct, Special Counsel Scott Bloch said in an April 8 statement.

clarifying that “long-standing federal policy prohibits discrimination against federal employees based on sexual orientation.” The White House statement appeared to contradict recent remarks by the presidential appointee questioning whether employees who were discriminated against for being gay or lesbian could appeal those cases to OSC, which is the only agency that handles such cases.

Proposed anti-gay marriage amendment goes to Mississippi ballots
Associated Press
JACKSON, Miss. - Mississippi voters will decide in November whether to amend the state constitution to include a ban on same-sex marriages. The amendment also would prohibit the state from recognizing gay unions performed in other states. Mississippi has banned same-sex marriages by law since 1997. Supporters of a constitutional amendment say it would protect the law if there are court challenges.


BAGHDAD, Iraq - Attacks killed five U.S. service members April 8 and 9. The casualties occurred in the following incidents:

One 1st Cavalry Division Soldier was killed and another wounded at about 8:30 a.m. April 9 when their quick reaction force (QRF) was targeted by a coordinated attack. The QRF was responding to an earlier mortar attack in the vicinity of Camp Cooke. The attack consisted of an IED followed by small arms fire. The wounded Soldier has been returned to duty. The Soldiers' names are being withheld pending notification of their next of kin.

One 13th Corps Support Command soldier is dead and 12 are injured as the result of an attack on their convoy at approximately 12:25 p.m. April 9 near the Baghdad International Airport. The injured were evacuated to Logistics Base Seitz and some were further evacuated by air to combat support hospitals. The names of the dead are being withheld pending notification of next of kin. The incident is under investigation.

Three Marines serving with the First Marine Expeditionary Force were killed April 8 as a result of enemy action in the Al Anbar province while conducting security and stability operations. Note: A fourth Marine who died April 8 has already been reported in a press release on 08 April.

Police issue alert in North Side gay slayings
By Hal Dardick and Gary Washburn
Tribune staff reporters
Chicago police this week issued a community alert warning North Side residents not to allow strangers in their homes under any circumstances after the apparently unrelated slayings of two gay men under similar circumstances.

The bodies of Kevin Clewer, 31, who worked at a northwest suburban factory, and Brad Nelson Winters, 38, a theater director, were found in their bedrooms with multiple stab wounds, police said. The investigation of Clewer's murder is focusing on someone he met that night, and Winters might have been killed by someone he met and brought home, Chief of Detectives James Molloy said earlier this week

Activists condemn tobacco industry’s targeting of gay community


Judy Shepard says anti-hate crime action needed in area
Her son, Matthew, was robbed, beaten and killed in 1998 in Wyoming because he was gay.

For The Evening Sun -
Maryann Dellinger said the issue really hit home one afternoon last August.

She was driving on Route 30 when another car came crashing into her.

When the driver exited, he pointed to a rainbow sticker on the back of her vehicle and said the sight of it had angered him.


Transgenders Lead Contingent of Supporters for Lobby Days
By Jone Devlin
Local transgender activists are gearing up to converge on Capitol Hill, April 29-30 to lobby Congress for transgender inclusion in, and passage of hate crimes and employment rights legislation.
The event is Lobby Days 2004, and is sponsored by the National Transgender Advocacy Coalition (NTAC), the country’s largest and most active organization advocating for the rights of transgender Americans at federal, state, and local levels. Vanessa Edwards Foster, Houston chair of NTAC, has been preparing for Lobby Days for months now, a task that has been both daunting, and, at times, very emotional.


Sandoval County clerk accepts judge for hearing
Sandoval County Clerk Victoria Dunlap and the state attorney general's office have agreed on which judge should preside over a hearing on a restraining order blocking her from issuing same-sex marriage licenses.


Report shows gay couples face serious pocketbook inequities
Paper by NGLTF Policy Institute gives dollars-and-cents picture of penalties due to inability to marry
By David Webb
Committed gay and lesbian couples face substantial economic penalties because they cannot marry, according to a report released this week by the Policy Institute of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.
The report, Economic Benefits of Marriage, zeroes in on several Massachusetts gay and lesbian couples. It compares them to similarly-positioned married couples, and shows the economic loss the gay couples suffer because they are unable to file joint federal and state income tax returns and are ineligible for joint Social Security benefits.
The study also examines how the state’s estate tax laws and worker’s compensation benefits discriminate against gay and lesbian couples.

check out -

Baghdad Burning
One Year Later - April 9, 2004
April 9, 2004
Today, the day the Iraqi Puppets hail "National Day", will mark the day of the "Falloojeh Massacre"… Bremer has called for a truce and ceasefire in Falloojeh very recently and claimed that the bombing will stop, but the bombing continues as I write this. Over 300 are dead in Falloojeh and they have taken to burying the dead in the town football field because they aren't allowed near the cemetery. The bodies are decomposing in the heat and the people are struggling to bury them as quickly as they arrive. The football field that once supported running, youthful feet and cheering fans has turned into a mass grave holding men, women and children.

Same-sex policy change rejected
 The General Assembly rejected a policy change Thursday that would have allowed same-sex partners of UN staffers to receive family benefits, and asked secretary general Kofi Annan to review it. Representatives of dozens of Islamic and African nations, as well as the Vatican, led the revolt against Annan's recent directive to offer medical, pension and other benefits for same-sex partners whose home governments have recognized their domestic partnerships. The new policy took effect Feb. 1.


Few in Congress back gay marriage
Rep. Frank claims at least 50 in House favor full rights
The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest gay civil rights group, is studying the ebb and flow of every development surrounding the status in Congress of a proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage.

“We’re mobilizing all of our resources to defeat it,” said Winnie Stachelberg, HRC’s political director


Gays keep fighting after Brazil retreats on U.N. resolution
Proposal would have asked all nations to end anti-gay discrimination
WASHINGTON — Sumil Pant was on a mission to get to Geneva and nothing was going to stop him. The founder of the Blue Diamond Society, Nepal’s sole gay and lesbian advocacy group, had stories to tell from his country, stories about gay men blackmailed by police and lesbians tortured into marriage.


New legislative maps pit gay-friendly lawmakers
Revised districts may impact political support of gay issues in General Assembly
Georgia’s redrawn legislative districts will put at least one gay-friendly lawmaker out of the General


On the record under the Gold Dome
Advocates on both sides of the gay marriage amendment debate aired their views one last time before the House voted 122-52 to pass the amendment on March 31.


Where have the activists gone?
President Bush dropped the ball in the battle against AIDS, and gay marriage is banned in Boston. Too many of our advocates are MIA in that fight

Remember the days when AIDS activists engaged in colorful street protests that dramatized the government’s indifference to the deadly epidemic? Those poignant demonstrations have been replaced by — well, by nothing really, except for funding and grant proposals.


Activists call for Singapore to scrap gay sex ban
SINGAPORE (AP) — Gay rights activists in Singapore are urging the government to do away with a decades-old law that criminalizes gay sex acts, claiming the law is archaic and unconstitutional. “Here in Singapore, we continue to demand rapid social changes to support economic development: in education, job retraining, immigration,” said Alex Au, founder of gay rights group People Like Us. But the government has been far too slow in allowing changes to the city-state’s sex laws, Au said. The criminal code’s Section 377 bans men from engaging in “any act of gross indecency” with other men, punishable by a maximum two years in jail. In November, the government promised to review the law in response to public outrage over the imprisonment of a police officer for engaging in oral sex — also banned under Section 377. The government has, however, dragged its feet over the promised reforms. Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong said in an interview with Time magazine last July that gay Singaporeans would be safe, “but don’t flaunt your gay rights.”

Jury finds man guilty of double murder
Paul Moore's half brother convicted of arson in 2003 killings of girl and cross-dressing teen.
By Vic RyckaertJurors convicted two men late Thursday in connection with the killing of a cross-dressing teen and his female friend. When Paul Moore's sexuality was threatened after an intimate encounter with a person he believed was a woman, prosecutors say, he gunned down Brandie Coleman, 18, and Gregory Johnson, 17. Johnson dressed as a woman and answered to the name Nireah.


Gay ITC student disputes election
He was cut from campus ballot
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
A student at the Interdenominational Theological Center said the school prevented him from running for office this week because he is gay. The elections were held Tuesday and Wednesday, and the Rev. Christopher Brown's name was not on the ballot. A few weeks ago, Brown, 29, filed the paperwork to run for president of ITC's Morehouse School of Religion, as well as a spot on the ITC Board of Trustees. He said he was cleared of all requirements for candidacy and even participated in a debate with other candidates. A few days later, he said, he was told he could not run.


Gay-themed book sparks objection
By Andy GammillA child's question about two princes kissing in a picture book prompted his father to complain and may spur the Shelby County Library to move the book out of reach of young children.

Thursday, April 08, 2004 organizes marriage rights protests, April 15
Sign the Petition:  
"I won't vote for anyone who supports the anti-gay amendment"

On April 15, 24 cities across the country will host demonstrations for same-sex marriage rights at local post offices. The "No Taxation With Discrimination" protests aim to bring awareness of gay marriage issues and to mobilize support from the GLBT community and its allies. The tax day protests are being organized by a national online network cofounded by Robin Tyler and John Aravosis and are devoted to stopping antigay constitutional amendments. "Gay Americans and their allies must make fighting this legislative bigotry our number 1 priority," said Aravosis in a statement. For more information or to find the post office nearest you, visit


Adoption under fire
Two anti-gay adoption bills introduced in Michigan House
By D'Anne Witkowski
LANSING - Two bills have been introduced in the Michigan House that would impact LGBT people seeking to adopt children or become foster parents. Although the bills do not specifically address LGBT foster and adoptive parents, LGBT leaders call the bills a clear attempt to hurt LGBT families.

TurnOut Detroit seeks to empower unregistered LGBT voters
By Brent Dorian Carpenter
FERNDALE - On Saturday, TurnOut Detroit held a training session designed to rally unregistered LGBT voters, educate the public about same-sex marriage, anti-gay discrimination and other vital issues for the community. The event was sponsored by Affirmations Lesbian and Gay Community Center, Detroit Black Gay Pride, and Triangle Foundation, and is being funded by the Gill Foundation.

Lawyer Denied State Position Because He's Gay
by Newscenter Staff
(Des Moines, Iowa)
  Iowa Republicans are blocking the appointment of a Des Moines lawyer to the State Board of Education because he is gay. Jonathan Wilson was hand picked by Democratic Gov. Tom Vilsack.  Wilson who is openly gay, served for 12 years on the Des Moines School Board as well as a number of national education panels. "This is not about his qualifications. This is about his sexual orientation," an angry Vilsack told reporters Thursday. "It's wrong, it's divisive and it's not inclusive.


OSC Flip Flops - Gays Again Protected
by Paul Johnson Newscenter
(Washington, D.C.) The Office of the Special Counsel has finally conceded that it was wrong to have announced gays and lesbians working for the federal government were no longer protected against discrimination in the workplace. In a statement released late Thursday Special Counsel Scott J. Bloch said, “It is the policy of this Administration that discrimination in the federal workforce on the basis of sexual orientation is prohibited.”


Judge excludes antigay group from California marriage suit

California superior court judge James L. Warren on Thursday denied the request of the antigay Proposition 22 Legal Defense and Education Fund to participate as a party in Woo v. Lockyer, the lawsuit brought by the National Center for Lesbian Rights on behalf of six same-sex couples, Equality California, and Our Families Coalition. The lawsuit argues that denying same-sex couples the right to marry violates the California constitution's guarantees of equality, liberty, and privacy. Ruling from the bench after extensive oral argument by both sides, the judge held that the Proposition 22 Fund did not meet the legal standard for intervention, which requires showing that the proposed intervenor may be harmed directly by the outcome of the case. Warren found that the Proposition 22 Fund had not shown any way in which its members would be harmed by a ruling that same-sex couples can marry in California. "We are very pleased by the court's ruling," said Shannon Minter, legal director for NCLR. "This case is about real families who are harmed by being denied the right to marry. The couples who brought this lawsuit are entitled to their day in court without undue interference by an outside group with no direct interest in the case. The court correctly found that merely having a political interest in an issue does not meet


BAGHDAD, Iraq - Attacks killed five Coalition service members April 7 and 8. The casualties occurred in the following incidents:

One Task Force 1st Armored Division Soldier was killed when two
rockets impacted Camp Cooke at about 5:30 p.m. April 7.

One 1st Infantry Division Soldier was killed as the result of a
small-arms fire attack at a checkpoint near Samarra at about 9:25 p.m. April 7.

One 1st Infantry Division Soldier was killed when a combat patrol was attacked by an improvised explosive device, a rocket-propelled grenade and small-arms fire near the town of Khan Bani Sa'ad at about 10:45 a.m. April 8. A quick reaction force responded, detaining two individuals.

Two Marines serving with the I Marine Expeditionary Force were killed -- one April 7 and one April 8 -- as a result of enemy action in the Al Anbar province while conducting security and stability operations.

In addition:

A Task Force Olympia Soldier died April 8 from injuries suffered in an improvised explosive device attack on a Coalition convoy in Mosul April 4. The name of the Soldier is being withheld pending notification of next-of-kin.

Emotions High As New Hampshire Considers Gay Marriage Ban
by Newscenter Staff
(Concord, New Hampshire) Hundreds of supporters and opponents of same-sex marriage have rallied at the New Hampshire Capitol as lawmakers consider a ban on gay weddings. The legislation would close what is seen as a loophole in existing law and prevent New Hampshire from recognizing the out-of-state marriages of gay and lesbian couples.

BC seen rejecting 2 gay men for post
By Alex Beam, Globe Staff, 4/8/2004
three-year effort to hire a professor for a prestigious endowed chair at Boston College has again ended in failure, this time amid charges that the Rev. William Leahy, BC's president, rejected the leading candidates because they are gay.

Mark Doty, a poet who lives in New York City and Provincetown, was the English department's top choice for the Rattigan Professorship, but he said that department members told him that his selection "had been undercut" by Leahy and that the chair would not be filled."The final candidates were gay men, and I was told that this was an issue," Doty said. "The process has imploded."


City Council backs changes to marriage
By Heather MacDonald, OAKLAND -- The Oakland City Council jumped into the fray over same-sex marriage Tuesday, calling on Congress to reject President Bush's demand for a constitutional amendment banning gay unions. The council also urged the state Legislature to pass Assembly Bill 1967, which would change California law to permit "gender-neutral" marriage. And in separate actions taken in closed session, the City Council directed the City Attorney's Office to file friend-of-the-court briefs supporting San Francisco in the court battles over that city's decision to allow same-sex couples to wed. "I only wish this council had it in its ability to do what San Francisco did," said Councilmember Danny Wan (Grand Lake-Chinatown), the council's only gay member.


Group seeks to ban gay marriage
Associated Press Writer
LANSING -- A citizens group wants to put the same-sex marriage issue before Michigan voters in November.
A group calling itself Citizens for the Protection of Marriage began circulating petitions this week in an effort to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman in the state constitution.


In South, issue of gay marriage exposes hate and fear
By Dahleen Glanton
In New Orleans, fundamentalist Christians tried to ban the annual Southern Decadence festival, or "gay Mardi Gras," an event that draws thousands of homosexuals. A conservative Christian lobbying group has vowed to end the popular Gay Days at Disney World in Florida, equating the annual gathering to "a meeting of the Ku Klux Klan." Across the South, churches are holding rallies and preachers are denouncing homosexuality from the pulpit.


Group seeks to unseat Democrats over gay marriage vote
Pioneer Press
Even though state Senate elections are two years away, New Brighton resident Jeff Davis is already marshalling funds to unseat lawmakers who voted against the gay- marriage amendment. Davis, a 44-year-old consultant-turned-activist, supports a proposed constitutional amendment that would define marriage as a union between a man and woman. Gay marriage is already illegal in the state, but this proposal, if approved by voters, would put the ban in the constitution.


Rogue billboards cause a stir

Asheville: A flap over a series of signs that condemn homosexuality is the talk of a town that's home to gay people and conservative Christians alike.


County rejects same-sex health benefits
Some commissioners worried that allowing the measure would open the door to same-sex marriages, which several oppose.
By BILL VARIAN, TAMPA - To Hillsborough Commissioner Ronda Storms, extending health benefits to same-sex partners may work fine in the city. But things are different in the county, she said. Storms on Wednesday led a narrow majority of the commission to reject the idea of extending health benefits to the domestic partners of county employees. The vote was 4-3. "Hillsborough County has not historically been supportive in this regard," Storms said afterward. "The institution of marriage has stood the test of time. I'm going to do my part to strengthen it, not weaken it."


Poll shows state against defining marriage
(Hartford-WTNH) _ A new UConn poll shows Connecticut residents oppose the idea of defining marriage as only between a man and a woman. The same poll shows overwhelming support for civil unions. Some say this new poll shows the state moving closer toward accepting gay marriage.


The dam breaks: Emotions flood campus over gay marriage issue
By Mike Young
There was a virtual cornucopia of emotions felt on campus last Wednesday.
Love, hate and ambivalence all wove in and out of the crowds that formed on the free-speech area east of Marriott Library.
Two separate groups of College Republicans and the Lesbian Gay Student Union converged on the free speech plaza to protest and demonstrate regarding the issue of gay marriage.


Antigay bigots confronted by hundreds in New Paltz
"This united everybody"
By Dan Keefe
NEW PALTZ, N.Y.-- On April 4, supporters of gay marriage made it clear that bigotry is not welcome here. Antigay bigot Fred Phelps targeted this town 75 miles north of New York City, after Green Party Mayor Jason West defied state law to issue same-sex marriage licenses last month.

Hundreds of activists from neighboring towns, New York City and Connecticut joined students and community members for a full day of protest and political discussion. "This was a uniting experience for everybody," said Dale, a member of New Paltz Equality Initiative. "This had the opposite effect of what Phelps had hoped."

"It’s not just people wanting to get married who are behind this movement," said West. "The fundamental issue is one of respect and equality--just like the students in the South, Black and white, who demanded respect and equality for Black Americans.

Conservatives won't tolerate gay groups says Singapore
SINGAPORE (AP) - Singapore said Wednesday that it would ban gay support organisations because its conservative population doesn't believe such groups deserve legitimacy.

"As the mainstream moral values of Singaporeans are conservative, it is hence contrary to public interest to grant legitimacy to the promotion of homosexual activities and viewpoints," the Home Affairs Ministry said in a written response to questions.

The statement follows a government decision on Tuesday to deny freedom of association to People Like Us, a support and advocacy group for gay people, because it believed the group was "likely to be used for unlawful purposes or for purposes prejudicial to public peace, welfare or good order in Singapore," the ministry said.

The government said in its formal rejection notice that the group must halt all activities, warning that members of unregistered societies face heavy punishments under the law, People Like Us co-founder Alex Au said.


Gay, lesbian scholarship established The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network has announced the launch of a new national college scholarship program for students. Scholarships will go toward providing college funds for high school graduates who have been active leaders in student-led lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered activities, while other grants will underwrite participation by current high school students in GLSEN Leadership Team activities.


Gay marriage ban wording OK'd
Gazette State Bureau
HELENA - The Montana Family Foundation's proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage in the state cleared its first hurdle this week when the Legislature's chief lawyer declared the language of the proposed amendment legal


Gay nominee a victim of bias, Iowa governor says
DES MOINES (AP) - Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack said Wednesday that he has no plans to withdraw the nomination of a Des Moines gay activist to the state school board.


Chicago Cardinal Mulls Sanctions On Pro Gay Politicians
by Steph Smith Newscenter
(Chicago, Illinois)  John Kerry, Mayor Richard M. Daley, and other Catholic "pro homosexual" politicians could be denied the sacrament under sanctions being considered by Chicago's Cardinal Francis George. In unusually tough talk by a prince of the church during Holy Week Cardinal George attacked public figures who do not follow Catholic teachings during a speech a City Club luncheon. Some Catholic bishops across the country have refused communion to out gays and politicians who support gay marriage.  Recently, George met with Mayor Richard M. Daley after the mayor announced support for gay marriage, but he has refused to say what he said to the mayor.


In New Mexico, a defiant county clerk at heart of gay marriage debate
RICHARD BENKE, (AP) -- Victoria Dunlap has made a habit of shocking her fellow Republicans. At her swearing in four years ago as county clerk, the landscape painter-turned-politician insisted on using Thomas Paine's "Rights of Man" instead of the Bible, and she's been wrestling with the system ever since. But nothing quite prepared the local GOP for her latest foray into controversy: In February, she followed ultra-liberal San Francisco's lead and issued dozens of gay marriage licenses.


Firm sues city over
same-sex benefits
Policy shuts out contractors who don't cater to homosexuals
A construction company sued the city of Minneapolis yesterday for requiring certain contractors to provide unmarried employees with "partners" the same benefits as married couples. The city's ordinance prohibits any company that won't provide the benefits from bidding for municipal contracts of over $100,000.

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

ACLU pushes for transgender rights
By Kristen Przybylski, Daily Staff Reporter
April 07, 2004
Michigan transgendered individuals are trivialized by the lack of anti-discriminatory laws and specific health care coverage, American Civil Liberties Union lawyer Kara Jennings said.

Eric Johnston, / Network
Gay rights groups opened a second front in the legal battle for marriage rights in New York state on Wednesday, when the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit asking the courts to declare unconstitutional a state law that denies same-sex couples the right to marry.

Obama pledges support for gay marriage
CHICAGO -- On April 2, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Barack Obama appealed to the readers of the Windy City Times, Chicago's premiere news source for the gay community by promising his support for gay marriage.


Gay Ban Controversy
CURRY COUNTY -- The controversy about banning same sex marriages is a subject that curry county is trying to stop before it even becomes an issue. So Tuesday Tim Ashley brought it before the rest of the County Commissioners for discussion. They are going to decide whether Curry County in Clovis will impose a ban on issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples.

Matthew Shepard Killer Seeks Lighter Sentence
by Newscenter Staff
(Cheyenne, Wyoming) One of the men convicted of murdering Matthew Shepard in 1998 has petitioned the courts for a lighter sentence arguing he was not properly informed of his appeal options after pleading guilty to the slaying of the gay student.


Details magazine article "Gay or Asian?" angers activists

Asian Pacific Islanders for Human Rights protested an event held by Details magazine and DKNY on April 2 in response to what the group considers a racist, homophobic article that ran in the April issue of the magazine. "Gay or Asian?" provoked an immediate response from activists representing the Asian Pacific Islander and gay communities.

Cable Network Says It Did Nothing Wrong Airing Gay Conversion Show
by Newscenter Staff
(Los Angeles, California) The country's largest Spanish language television network says it did nothing wrong in airing a program advocating so-called reparative therapy.


Transgender defendant wants jury trial
By Shawn Linenberger, Reporter
Wednesday, April 7, 2004
A transgender who was charged in Leavenworth County District Court after trying to obtain a marriage license wants the case to be heard by a jury. Sandy Gast, a man who is preparing to become a woman, is charged with a misdemeanor count of making a false swearing on a marriage license application. Gast's attorney, Pedro Irigonegaray, last week said he wants the case to go before a jury.


Curry County To Consider Ban On Same-Sex Marriage
The Associated Press
CLOVIS — The Curry County Commission plans to consider a proposed ordinance that would prohibit the county clerk from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Florence, Italy -
The Statute Commission of the Regional Council of Tuscany has completed two articles regulating couples which have caused celebration in the gay and lesbian communities in the region. These articles concern the safeguarding of the family values based on marriage and the recognition of other forms of living together. ArciGay Tuscany commended the statute as one worthy of being in Europe and said that their organization had made specific proposals during the preparation of the article. Today they express their complete satisfaction especially because of the ban on discrimination besides for the usual categories: gender, age, religion etc. also for 'sexual tendencies'. The note concluded: "Tuscany confirms yet again that it is a land of freedom. The organization "L'altro volto -Lucca Gay e Lesbica" also expressed satisfaction for the ban on discrimination for sexual tendencies and declared: "this puts our Region on the par with the rest of the EU which had banned discrimination against homosexuals and had recognized their rights many years ago".


New Mexico School District To Provide Domestic Partner Benefits
by Newscenter Staff
(Albuquerque, New Mexico) Albuquerque Public Schools will offer benefits to the partners of gay and lesbian employees. The school district's policy committee voted 2-1 to back the plan.


The gay-marriage windfall: $16.8 billion
Which industries will catch the bouquet?
By Aude Lagorce
The national debate over gay marriage is still heating up, with no resolution in sight. But one thing is abundantly clear: Legalizing same-sex marriages would mean a windfall for the wedding industry. We estimate that if the laws were changed, gay couples currently living together would collectively spend $16.8 billion to get hitched


Ban is banding gay community
By Amanda Gontarz /
Closing the door of his Marshfield Hills home last Monday evening, George Smart follows a welcoming greeting with breaking news. "They've just passed the ban," he said, referring to the vote the state Legislature had just taken to ban gay marriage and establish civil unions. This isn't going to stop Smart and his partner of 27 years, Bruce Bell, from going to Town Hall May 17 for their marriage license. They plan to marry three days later and on that day, they will be able to take their commitment rings, which they gave each other on their 10th anniversary, from their right hands and wear them on their left ring fingers.

$2,500 to promote the annual Fresno Reel Pride International
FRESNO, Calif. (AP) - Fresno City Council Member Jerry Duncan is objecting to a decision by the city's Human Relations Commission to spend $2,500 to promote the annual Fresno Reel Pride International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival.

Duncan has asked Mayor Alan Autry to prevent the money from going to the festival.

"I just don't think it's proper that city taxpayer dollars be used to sponsor a private event like that," Duncan said.

Hundreds Gather For Hearing On Gay Marriage
House Debates Bill To Block Same-Sex Marriages
CONCORD, N.H. -- New Hampshire legislators heard testimony Wednesday morning from more than two dozen people on gay marriage, and many more waited to testify in the afternoon.


Oakland City Council Resolutions on Same-Sex Marriage
Oakland -- April 7, 2004: On the evening of April 6, 2004, the Oakland City Council, at 10:00 pm, passed two resolutions which greatly affects the LGBT Community in Oakland CA. Sponsored by openly gay Council Member Danny Wan and District 4 Council Member Jean Quan, and assistance by Marriage Equality California&Mac226;s Alameda County Chapter, a resolution was passed in support of California&Mac226;s AB 1967, CA Marriage License Non Discrimination Act which was introduced on February 12, 2004 by Assembly Member Mark Leno.

Gay woman is awarded parental rights to ex-partner's child
The Associated Press
PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Gay and lesbian civil rights advocates have applauded a Supreme Judicial Court ruling that said a gay woman from Freeport who was "committed" to her ex-partner's biological child is entitled to full parental rights.


Board to ask for marriage law repeal
 By Jenny Huang : The Herald-SunCARRBORO -- The Board of Alderman will ask the N.C. General Assembly to repeal the state's "defense of marriage" law so marriages of same-sex couples performed in other states can receive full legal recognition here.


April 7, 2004 -- STORRS, Conn. - Connecticut residents support the concept of civil unions for same-sex couples, but are divided over whether gay marriage should be legal, says a University of Connecticut poll. In the survey, released yesterday, 74 percent of the 606 people polled from March 25 through 29 said they support the idea of a law to allow same-sex couples to legally form civil unions. However, when asked about gay marriages, 49 percent support the idea, while 46 percent are opposed.


House falls short on amendments
GOP gets a debate on three constitutional issues, but no approvals
Associated Press
LANSING — It has been a tough few weeks for constitutional amendments in the Michigan House.
Representatives haven’t been able to come up with the two-thirds vote needed to put before voters measures to limit marriage to one man and one woman, end the ban on the death penalty and cap the income tax rate at 3.9 percent after it drops that low this summer.


Gay marriage fits Republican values

 As the leader of the Yale College Republicans, I find my personal politics ever compared with the national standard of the GOP. As one might expect of any member of the Republican Party, my stances lean right on a number of issues: I am firmly committed to the foreign policy of President Bush, believe strongly in the private sphere, and often prioritize the rights of states above federal jurisdiction. While I support our President and will emphatically wave the Republican banner, my political views frequently diverge sharply from those of orthodox conservatives -- my friends refer to me as a "moderate" on most days and as a "liberal" before their morning caffeine. Much of this heckling derives from my positions on a number of social platforms: as opposed to many in the Republican Party, I find myself to be more accepting of traditionally "Democrat" views on topics ranging from gun control to the welfare state.

An integral part of my purported "centrism" however, stems from my views on the issue of gay marriage. In opposition to the stance of President Bush (and indeed, much of the GOP) on the sanctity of traditional marriage, I do not support any type of constitutional amendment or federal legislation which limits or denies the rights of homosexual couples. The Republican Party stands for individual liberty and limited government; in calling for a constitutional amendment for the express reason of denying the validity of gay unions, we are contradicting these core principles, violating the dignity of our fellow citizens, and perpetuating lines of discrimination.

Sebastopol extends benefits to gay couples
Sebastopol's City Council on Tuesday night approved a new policy recognizing same-sex unions and giving benefits to same-sex spouses of employees, saying there is a need to provide equal treatment.


Gay rental provision likely to get fine-tuning
By Gordon Y.K. Pang
The fate of a bill making it illegal to discriminate against gay people in rental housing will be decided later this month by senators and representatives in joint conference committee.


Hearing set on gay unions bill
CONCORD (AP) - The Senate has said no to recognizing gay marriages. Now the issue goes to the House of Representatives. Members of the House Judiciary Committee expect hundreds of people to turn out for a hearing today on legislation to block any legal recognition of same-sex unions performed in other states.


no.. we need to vote with our money... do not buy things that do not have domestic benefits, do not go to states that pass bills that discriminate against queers.. its time to vote with our dollars... move of of bigoted stated... now is the time to act and let it be known.. get others involved..

Gays threaten boycott of Stillwater
Stillwater business owners are roiling this week from news that some gays and lesbians are boycotting their businesses because of Stillwater Republican Michele Bachmann's stand on gay marriage.
Bachmann is the Senate author of a measure that would let voters decide whether to amend the state constitution to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.


Married Or Not, Gays Gain Partner Coverage
Ashlea Ebeling,
NEW YORK - While gay marriage is a current hot-button issue for politicians, business leaders have been wrestling for years over whether to offer health coverage to their employees' domestic partners. As employers look into the benefits and costs of covering domestic partners, more and more of them are saying yes--not due to a court order or political pressure but because they think it makes good business sense.


Gay activist: Cops neglecting two murder investigations
Chicago police should be more aggressively investigating the recent stabbing deaths of two North Side gay men, gay activists charged Tuesday. Rick Garcia, a leader in the gay and lesbian community, said he has been told that investigators have not adequately canvassed the largely gay neighborhood near Belmont and Halsted about the murders. Garcia also said that police initially suggested one murder was the result of a domestic dispute and never informed the community when they determined that wasn't the case.


Talk show on Univisión angers gay rights groups

Univisión's 'Casos de Familia' talk show provokes outrage among gay rights groups and Pizza Hut, one of its major advertisers.


Thanks for coming out
By David Ehrenstein
The onslaught of gay weddings is the endpoint in a long process of overcoming the closet. Because only once you’re willing to stand up to being labeled a “fag” can you demand equal access to a rite as conservative as marriage.

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Attacks killed 14 U.S. service members on April 6 and 7. The casualties occurred in the following incidents:

- Twelve U.S. Marines died battling anti-Coalition forces in Ar Ramadi April 6.

- One 1st Infantry Division soldier was killed and another wounded during a counter-fire mission at Logistics Support Area Anaconda near Balad at about 8:35 p.m. April 6. The wounded soldier was medically evacuated to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Germany and is in stable condition. The incident is under investigation.

- One Task Force 1st Armored Division soldier was killed by RPG fire at about 6:30 a.m. April 7 as his convoy conducted a relief in place of the security forces guarding the Diala Police Station in Baghdad.

The soldier's name is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.
For more information please contact the press information center
at 914-360-5071.


Tuesday, April 06, 2004

Fear Stalks Chicago Gay Community 
by Steph Smith Newscenter
(Chicago, Illinois)  Four unsolved gay murders in Chicago's North Side gay neighborhood have the community nervous and angry at police. The most recent killing, was two weeks ago, the others go back several years, but community activists say all the murders have chilling similarities.


Rosie's Gay Brother Sues To Marry 
by Doug Windsor Newscenter
(New York City) 11 same-sex couples including New York State Assemblyman Danny O'Donnell and his partner John Banta will ask a court in Albany Wednesday to strike down a state law preventing gays from marrying. O'Donnell is the brother of Rosie O'Donnell.


Singapore denies rights to gay group
The Singapore government has denied freedom of association to a gay rights group and warned it to halt all activities, group officials said Tuesday. The organization, People Like Us, has demanded that the government explain why it considers a support and advocacy group for gay people "unlawful, prejudicial to the public peace," and "contrary to the national interest," cofounder Alex Au said. "The world can rightly perceive Singapore to be an intolerant place that's refusing to move with the times," Au said.


Big issues will go down to deadline in General Assembly
by Steven T. Dennis, Catherine Dolinski and Thomas Dennison
ANNAPOLIS -- A legislative logjam has nearly every major bill in the General Assembly awaiting final approval with just days left before the legislative session is scheduled to conclude Monday at midnight. Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) has yet to get a single piece of his legislative agenda passed, though several major pieces, including his transportation package and his flush fee, are moving forward.
Health care reform, school construction, a "living wage" proposal for state contractors, tuition caps, gay rights and medical malpractice reform all remain in the mix.
Gay rights -
The House has passed Hurson's bill setting up a domestic partner registry for unmarried couples. The registry would give unmarried couples medical visitation and decision-making rights similar to those married couples have.

Proposals to explicitly prohibit Maryland from recognizing gay marriages performed in other states have been defeated; state law already defines marriage as between a man and a woman.

Gay rights advocates also hope to pass a bill that would add attacks against homosexuals to the state's hate crimes law.


Gay marriage would make their families official, kids say

Gays Have 'No Right To Marry' Oregon Tells Court
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: April 6, 2004 5:03 p.m. ET
(Portland, Oregon) Legal briefs for and against same-sex marriage were filed in a Portland Court Tuesday setting the stage for a legal battle that will wind its way to the state Supreme Court. Nine same-sex couples who were married in Portland sued the state on March 24 after the registrar for vital records refused to file their marriage certificates. (story)
Lawyers for the state of Oregon in their brief said that same-sex couples have no constitutional right to obtain marriage licenses.


Senate Committee Approves Bill To Ban Gay Marriages
POSTED: 5:08 pm CDT April 6, 2004
MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- A Senate committee approved a constitutional amendment Tuesday that prevents marriage licenses from being issued to two people of the same sex.

ACLU to file gay marriage lawsuit
The Associated Press
The American Civil Liberties Union said it will sue New York state on behalf of same-sex couples denied the right to marry. The group said it will file a lawsuit in Albany on Wednesday against the state Department of Health on behalf of at least 12 gay couples. The complaint claims state health regulations defining marriage as between a man and a woman violates protections granted under the state constitution, said the ACLU's Paul Cates.

City may recognize same-sex marriages
Resolution would apply only to city employees, but activists say council vote carries important symbolism
The first city in Sonoma County to voice support for gay marriage, Sebastopol is poised again to break new ground by considering a policy of recognizing same-sex unions performed elsewhere. Though the resolution on tonight's City Council agenda would affect only city employees with same-sex spouses, the symbolism of the vote is important, one local gay activist said.


House Judiciary Committee to hold hearing on gay marriage
Associated Press Writer
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - The Senate has said no to recognizing gay marriages. Now the issue goes to the House of Representatives. Members of the House Judiciary Committee expect hundreds of people to turn out for a hearing Wednesday on legislation to block any legal recognition of same-sex unions performed in other states.

Senate committee approves bill to ban gay marriages
The Associated Press
A Senate committee approved a constitutional amendment Tuesday that prevents marriage licenses from being issued to two people of the same sex. The Senate Governmental Affairs Committee approved the ban on gay marriages by an 8-0 vote and it now goes to the full Senate for consideration.

Robinson meets with N.H. church that opposes him
Openly gay Episcopal bishop V. Gene Robinson will offer a church that opposes his leadership a list of "very conservative" bishops he would accept as visitors to the diocese.Robinson, who met with lay leaders and parishioners at the Church of the Redeemer on Monday night, said he'll take the next two weeks to draw up the list. Visiting bishops would be invited to preside over confirmations and provide other pastoral care, but they must accept Robinson's leadership of the diocese. Leaders at Redeemer would have a say in which bishop is chosen.


Microscope Put To Gay Health
by Newscenter Staff
Posted: April 6, 2004 2:14 p.m. ET
(Kansas City, Missouri) A sweeping health survey of Kansas City's LGBT community offers a unique glimpse at the state of gay health across the country, and the result is not good.


APS to propose same-sex benefits

Albuquerque Public Schools will pursue plans to offer benefits to same-sex domestic partners of employees. The district’s policy committee voted 2-1 Tuesday morning to direct APS administrators to change policies which currently only provide benefits to married spouses.

'I Am My Own Wife' Wins Drama Pulitzer
NEW YORK (AP) -- In "I Am My Own Wife," playwright Doug Wright describes its title character, Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, as "the most singular, eccentric individual the Cold War ever birthed." Wright's play won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for drama Monday. It tells the story of a real-life German transvestite, born Lothar Berfelde, who survived not only the Nazis but the Communists, without relinquishing her unusual sexual identity.

Court Refuses To Hear Gay Marriage Case
(Charleston, West Virginia) - The West Virginia Supreme Court has refused to hear a case challenging the state's Defense of Marriage Act. The case was brought by four gay and lesbian couples who were denied marriage licenses in Kanawha County. County Clerk Alma King refused to grant the licenses citing DOMA. The couples' petition said that the refusal to give them licenses violated their right to equal protection under the West Virginia Constitution.


Social workers association to rally for same-sex marriage bills
(Providence-AP) -- A rally in support of legislation that would permit same-sex marriage will be held at the Statehouse tomorrow. The Rhode Island chapter of the National Association of Social Workers is coordinating the event.


Gay Lubbock High Students Won't Appeal Ruling
by Newscenter Staff
(Lubbock, Texas) 
Students who sought to organize a Gay Straight Alliance at Lubbock High School will not appeal a court ruling that said the school board could not be forced to let the group meet on campus. Last month a federal judge ruled that the school district had not violate the student's rights when it refused to recognize the group.


Legal arguments on gay marriage filed
The filing of motions sets the stage for a hearing on April 16.
Statesman Journal
All sides in Oregon’s debate about same-sex marriage outlined their legal arguments in a test case Monday. State lawyers said same-sex couples have no constitutional right to obtain a marriage license, though courts could allow the Legislature to create a legal equivalent for them. Lawyers for same-sex couples argued that only marriage, under licenses that Multnomah County started issuing March 3, offers them the same legal protections and benefits as opposite-sex couples.


Petition drive to ban gay marriage launched
Campaign faces tight deadline
Backers of the proposal to define marriage in the state Constitution are giving up on the Legislature and mounting an eleventh-hour petition drive. The proposed amendment -- which would limit marriage to the union of one man and one woman -- fell eight votes short of the two-thirds needed to place the issue on the November ballot in a test vote in the state House March 9.


UMass survey finds split among Bay Staters over gay marriage
BOSTON -- Massachusetts residents were split over the state Legislature's proposed constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage but allow civil unions for same-sex couples, according to a University of Massachusetts survey. Forty-seven percent of those asked backed the proposal, while 47 percent opposed it. The poll, which began March 30 -- one day after lawmakers approved the amendment 105-92 -- and continued through April 4, included 463 residents, 400 of whom are registered voters.


Gay marriage ban takes a hit
Colorado House won't back Musgrave's plan to amend U.S. Constitution
By Peggy Lowe, Rocky Mountain News
The Colorado House won't say "I do" to Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave's proposed constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. There are enough votes in the House, where Musgrave served for four years, to kill the resolution supporting the amendment, according to Rep. Mark Larson, R-Cortez.


Duke threatens YMCA
Says it will end relationship if same-sex couples not given family rates
© 2004
Duke University has threatened to end its relationship with the local YMCA if the organization doesn't allow school's employees who are part of same-sex couples to pay the family membership rate. A spokeswoman for the YMCA of the Triangle said the organization received a letter with the ultimatum from the university on Friday, reported the Durham Herald-Sun.

Duke, the largest employer in Durham, N.C., said in the letter dated last Tuesday that the school's agreement with the YMCA gives Duke employees and their dependents discounted memberships in exchange for Duke promoting the Y. Officials at the university claim the Y had agreed to honor Duke's "same-sex spousal equivalent" policy, the paper reported. "We had an agreement," John Burness, Duke's senior vice president for public affairs and government relations, told the paper. "If they don't meet the agreement, then we don't have a relationship."


Council set to vote on same-sex benefits
Pamela J. Podger
The City Council will vote tonight on a resolution that offers equal marriage benefits to all city employees, regardless of their sexual orientation. The resolution would extend marriage benefits to city employees so that heterosexual and same-sex married couples and domestic partners are treated identically.


Gays find marriage a mixed bag
License doesn't guarantee benefits granted heterosexual couples
Rona Marech, Chronicle Staff Writer
When Kory O'Rourke called her car insurance company and asked that her spouse be added to her plan, the representative on the other end of the phone "didn't blink" -- even when it became clear that O'Rourke meant her same-sex partner, whom she had just married in San Francisco.

"Oh, congratulations," the representative at the Progressive Group of Insurance Companies said. "I'm going to issue you a $78 credit, so you guys be sure to go out and have a nice dinner on us."

O'Rourke was thrilled -- but it turns out the exchange should never have taken place. In changing O'Rourke's coverage, the representative apparently violated company policy. Progressive is not officially recognizing marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples, although it is investigating whether to change its policy, said spokesperson Todd Morgano.

Monday, April 05, 2004

April 5, 2004
Release Number: 04-04-08C
Iraq - An eighth Task Force 1st Armored Division Soldier died of wounds received during a small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenade attack Sunday evening in Sadr City.
More than two dozen Soldiers were wounded in the April 4 attack.
In a separate incident Sunday, reports of a U.S. Soldier's death in An Najaf are not correct. One U.S. Soldier was wounded, April 4, when a large number of men, many dressed in black, attacked a Coalition base with small-arms fire in An Najaf.
The Soldiers' names are being withheld pending next of kin notification.


Anti-Gay Group Accused Of Cheating Own Lawyers 
by Newscenter Staff
(Virginia Beach, Virginia) A law firm has asked a Virginia judge to seize the assets of the Christian Coalition to collect more than $75,000 in unpaid legal costs.


Church Leaders Denounce Mass Gay Marriage Amendment
by Margo Williams Newscenter
(Boston, Massachusetts) In an open letter to coincide with the beginning of Easter Week and Passover 600 church leaders have called on Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney to distance himself from attacks on same-sex marriage. "We reflect the truth that hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people of faith strongly support the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Courts Goodridge decision,'' the letter says.
"To deny gays and lesbians the right to marry in the future would be tantamount to establishing a particular sectarian viewpoint in our civil law. All of our religions will be in great danger if the state begins to define religious sanctity rather than civil law."


US Protests 'Torture' Of Gay Murder Suspects 
by Newscenter Staff
(Mexico City) The US government has delivered a formal protest to Mexico over the  "apparent torture" of an American gay couple accused of murder. Mario Medina, 23, and his partner Hiram Oliveros, 28, both of Laredo, Texas, have been held by Tamaulipas state authorities since March 26 as suspects in the slaying of a newspaper editor. The body of Roberto Mora, editor of El Mañana,  was found March 19.  Police say he had been stabbed 26 times.


Politician Announces He's Transgendered
by Newscenter Staff
(Rapid City, South Dakota) South Dakota's only out politician announced Monday that he is preparing to undergo sex reassignment to become a woman. Tom Murphy said that he had "pretended long enough."
The 48 year old Rapid City alderman said he will begin immediately living as a woman, but did not indicate what his new name will be. Right now, he said, people can refer to him in the masculine. Murphy said that for the next year he will begin hormone therapy and dress as a woman, a prerequisite for reassignment surgery. But, he said that he will not wear women's clothing in the council chamber. He said he will not seek reelection in 2005. 


Chicago community forum on gay mental health, April 7
A community forum on suicide and mental health issues affecting gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered adults will be held April 7 in Chicago. The forum includes a presentation by Peter M. Gutierrez, assistant chairman of Northern Illinois University's department of psychology, and a panel discussion. Following a question and answer session there will be time for strategic planning to address the concerns raised. The forum is free and open to the public. It will be held from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Howard Brown Health Center, 4025 N. Sheridan Rd. Seating is limited. To reserve seating, send e-mail to
The event is sponsored by the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's Midwest chapter, Horizons Community Services Center on Halsted, the Howard Brown Health Center, and the Chicago chapter of the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network.


The case for gay marriage
By Jonathan Rauch

In an excerpt from his new book, Gay Marriage: Why It Is Good for Gays, Good for Straights, and Good for America, a gay journalist makes his case for the importance of marriage both for society and for gays and lesbians.


University considers providing domestic partner benefits
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Academic Senate President John Wunder has proposed bringing informal domestic partner benefits to university faculty and staff.


Student Senate passes gay marriage resolution
By Melanie Asmar - Staff Writer
When it comes to gay marriages in the state of New Hampshire, the UNH Student Senate voted in favor of the state's motto, live free or die, on Sunday night. The Student Senate unanimously passed a resolution asking that New Hampshire State Representatives show support for same-sex marriages and civil unions in the Granite State.


This relationship isn't working
Let's seize this once-in-decade opportunity to open up the UK's nuclear dependency with the US to serious public scrutiny
Dan Plesch
The Guardian
Britain must loosen its military ties with the United States. Whatever their value in the past, today the relationship is dragging Britain into operations that are against its interests - while providing Americans with a false sense that they are speaking for what is called the international community. But this year presents a once-in-a-decade opportunity to open up the linchpin of that relationship to public scrutiny. This is the year that parliament and the United States Congress have to renew the treaty governing their cooperation on nuclear weapons.

Reaction Mixed To Contract Proposal
Benefits for same-sex couples at issue
A proposed Omaha police contract that would allow same-sex couples access to limited benefits is drawing mixed reviews. "This is far from being perfect, but it is a step in the right direction," said Tim Butz, executive director of the state American Civil Liberties Union. The proposal would allow officers to use paid leave to attend the funeral of a partner or a member of their partner's immediate family or in the event of sickness of their partner or the partner's family. An extension of such benefits would be a landmark for a state where public employees have never received such benefits recognizing same-sex domestic partnerships.


Gay rights group to file complaint at the FCC
By Melissa B. Gonzalez Valentin
Homophobic slurs that have been constantly aired in local radio and television shows have prompted gay and civil rights activists to file a complaint at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Civil Rights Commission to stop a practice they believe promotes hatred against honest members of Puerto Rican society.

You are invited to an evening of new
works and dialogue:
what does community mean
in an age of post-post modern
high anxiety?
please join our special quest as they perform, display,
and discuss the vision and value of their work.

* * * * w r i t e r s * * * *
Chris Nealon
Tanya Brolaski
Stephen Vincent

****Artist and Art work By****
Tayna Hollis
Fran Blau

Saturday, April 17, 2004
6:30 p.m. - art viewing
7:30 p.m. - reading and dialouge
3435 Cesar Chavez #327
San Francisco, CA 94110
this will be a night of dialogue & forward moving vision on poetry and the arts.
all are invited to (please) bring a piece of work to share; a manifesto to read, a
thesis to divulge, a vision/concept to offer . . . this night is about the dialogue .
. . . and seeing where we are / going / doing...
any questions contact: kari edwards /

Health department to issue birth certificates to same-sex couples
OKLAHOMA CITY -- All Ed Swaya wants from the state of Oklahoma is a birth certificate for his 2-year-old daughter with his name on it. After more than a year of requests and legal wrangling, it appears the Washington state resident will get his wish.


Northern Ireland councillor fined for homophobic abuse
Ben Townley, UK

A Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) councillor has been fined for homophobic taunts against a council candidate, after a Belfast court found him guilty of harassment.


2,000 evangelicals rally against gay marriages
By Putsata Reang

Evangelical Christians convened at a church in San Jose Sunday to rally against city leaders' recent decision to support same-sex marriages, while outside, gay and lesbian activists gathered in a small counter-protest.

Russel D. Feingold, United States Senator enumerates his reasons for opposing a Gay Marriage amendment

Oklahoma Refuses Birth Certificate To Baby With Two Dads 
by Newscenter Staff
(Oklahoma City, Oklahoma) Two-year-old Vivian is like most kids her age, curious, active and loving.  That love is directed at her two dads.  The tot has lived with her parents, Gregory Hampel and Edmund Swaya, in Seattle, Washington since shortly after she was born in Oklahoma. To ensure Vivian is cared for properly should anything happen to either of her dads, Hampel and Swaya requested a vital birth record showing the couple as joint parents. Despite a legal direction which permits co-adoption the Oklahoma Health Department refused.  


Knee-jerk hostility toward gays is rampant in black America
Georgia's black clergy foster fear and hatred with statement against civil unions
You'd think black Americans -- still struggling against a lingering, if muted, racism -- would occupy the front lines in the battle against bigotry. But a knee-jerk antipathy toward gays and lesbians is rampant in black America, nowhere more evident than in the black church. Black ministers often overlook more commonplace sins -- lying, gossiping, fornicating -- to denounce homosexuality from the pulpit, casting Christianity as a harsh and narrow religion of exclusion.


Groups lay groundwork for Massachusetts election fight

In Massachusetts, gay rights supporters are training activists to become door-to-door campaigners. Conservatives are planning a legislative guide for voters. Both sides already are gearing up for the fall legislative elections as they jockey for influence in the fight over a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban same-sex marriage.

MEDIA RELEASE - April 5, 2004

Sheri A. Lunn – Director of Communications - 323-857-8751 or Roberta Sklar - Press Secretary - 917-704-6358


-Denial of Marriage Rights Costs Massachusetts Couples Thousands of Dollars Per Year, Report Finds

-Disparities in Wide Range of Areas Including Income Tax, Survivor Benefits, and Estate Taxes

BOSTON, April 5, 2004 - As millions of married couples are signing and sending off their tax returns prior to the April 15 tax day deadline, a groundbreaking report released today by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Policy Institute reveals that same-sex couples face widespread economic disparities and hardships because they are denied equal marriage rights. The report takes situations commonly faced by Massachusetts couples and compares the economic benefits afforded to married couples to those available to same-sex couples. Two same-sex couples residing in Massachusetts are profiled to show the real-life costs to them and their children of not being able to marry.

Entitled "Economic Benefits of Marriage under Federal and Massachusetts Law," the study is the first comprehensive analysis of the disparities gay couples face in federal and state income tax, Social Security benefits, gift tax, estate tax, worker's compensation, and line of duty death benefits. It was authored by Terence R. Dougherty, an attorney with Patterson, Belknap, Webb & Tyler LLP. It is the first of five economic studies to be produced by the Task Force Policy Institute analyzing states that are at the epicenter of the national dialogue concerning equal marriage rights for same-sex couples.

"Same-sex couples pay more in taxes and get fewer protections and benefits in return," said Matt Foreman, the Task Force's executive director. "These injustices aren't hypothetical - instead, they are being inflicted right now on hard-working, tax paying Massachusetts couples, often at times of family tragedy and loss. This report quantifies the cost to two Massachusetts gay and lesbian families."

"We're going to use these hard data to convince our state legislators not only that the economic impact of denying gay and lesbian couples equal marriage rights is real, but that civil unions are no substitute for full equality," said Sue Hyde, a Cambridge parent and the Task Force's New England field organizer. Hyde noted that information from the report will be used to educate members of the Massachusetts legislature during the coming year as part of a comprehensive effort to kill a proposed amendment to the state constitution prohibiting same-sex marriages. (The legislature approved the measure by a five vote margin on March 29, but it needs to be approved by the legislature again in 2005 before it is placed on the ballot in 2006).

One of the couples profiled in the report, Donna Triggs and Donna Moore, both 54, pay $2,177 (13%) more each year in state and federal income taxes than a married couple earning the same amount because they cannot file a joint return. The analysis also finds that if Ms. Triggs died as a result of an injury at work, her spouse would receive $884 per week ($45,968 per year, up to a maximum of $207,722) in workers' compensation benefits. Because Ms. Triggs and Ms. Moore cannot now marry, however, Ms. Moore would receive zero workers' compensation benefits.

"Why should we have to pay more in taxes while being cut out of the social safety net programs we've been paying into our entire lives," asked Hyde. "As Massachusetts residents, all we want and what we deserve is equal treatment."

Another couple profiled in the report is Thorsten Behrens and Christopher Schiebel, who are raising Christopher's two children from a previous marriage. Thorsten is the main breadwinner, and Christopher earns significantly less than Thorsten. If Thorsten died after the two were allowed to legally marry, Christopher's Social Security benefit would be $1,533 per month ($18,396 per year). Because they cannot marry, however, Christopher's Social Security benefit would be only $303 per month ($3,636 per year), a disparity of $1,230 per month ($14,760 per year). Likewise, upon retirement, Thorsten and Christopher's combined monthly Social Security retirement benefit would be 25% higher ($461 more per month, $5,532 more per year) if they were legally married.

The report underscores that creating civil unions for same-sex couples, which is being advocated by the leadership of the Massachusetts legislature, falls far short of providing benefits equal to those enjoyed by married couples.

"Because so many important financial rights and responsibilities - like federal income tax and Social Security benefits - are federal protections based on marital status, civil unions do not and cannot provide anything remotely resembling what comes with marriage," said Sean Cahill, Ph.D., director of the Task Force Policy Institute. "There are 1,138 federal protections associated with marriage, but civil unions will not give gay couples access to a single one."

Given the passage of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in 1996, which allows the federal government to withhold recognition from same-sex marriages performed in any state, in the short run same-sex marriages in Massachusetts will not be recognized by federal bureaucracies. However, many believe DOMA to be unconstitutional, and it is possible that in the future DOMA will be struck down or repealed. It is also possible that a President and Congress more supportive of equal rights for gay and lesbian people will afford these federal protections to married same-sex couples. "While married gay couples in Massachusetts may not be able to immediately access those federal protections," Cahill said, "if they are allowed to marry they have the potential to access these protections in the future. However, if same-sex couples are only allowed to form civil unions, under the current legal framework they will not be able to access any federal benefits or protections."

The report was authored by Terence R. Dougherty, an attorney with Patterson, Belknap, Webb & Tyler LLP, a prestigious 168-lawyer firm based in New York City. The firm was ranked #1 in the nation for the pro bono contributions of lawyers in 2002.

To download a free copy of the full report, which includes multiple charts, log on to the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force publications library at