poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Brief report of experience of Metis of their last 13

According to the arrested metis, all of them were taken saying that they were being taken for a meeting and needed them to identify the guy who’d been caught under the suspicion of Jayaram’s case. Some of them were dancing inside Babylon disco and most of them were on their way to the disco. The police that were their clients took them and most of them were ones that they knew from before. They went with them because they approached them in a friendly manner and told them that they were all being taken for two hours meeting. After they were taken they were all kept in a room that wasn’t even big enough for five people and said they would be freed after questioning them. Most of the metis that were arrested were just out to enjoy themselves in the discos and wanted a night of dancing. Inside the prison on the first day when one of the metis wanted to use the bathroom they didnt open the door and when he yelled at them to take him to the bathroom they beat him up with a stick till it broke.

India News > Police make breakthrough in gay murder case:

New Delhi, Aug 21 (IANS) :The missing car of Pushkin Chandra, a USAID employee murdered here a week ago along with his gay partner, has been found, Delhi Police said Saturday.
Police confirmed that the Opel Asrta car (registration no. DL-3CY-8012) belonged to Chandra, the son of a retired bureaucrat.

The bodies of Chandra and his gay partner Kuldeep were found in the first floor annexe of the Chandras' sprawling mansion at the upmarket Anand Lok neighbourhood in south Delhi Aug 14.
Terming the recovery of the car Friday a major breakthrough, a senior police officer said: "The car is the most crucial link to the killers who we suspect are hiding in the capital or its adjoining states."

The car was found abandoned in central Delhi. Forensic experts have examined the car.

"The car was locked and it appears the killers abandoned it due to the intense checking carried out by police as part of security arrangements for the Independence Day celebrations. The killers probably stayed in a guesthouse in central Delhi for some time," the official said.

Becoming a Visible Man
Jamison  Green 

Written by a leading activist in the transgender movement, Becoming a Visible Man is an artful and compelling inquiry into the politics of gender. Jamison Green combines candid autobiography with informed analysis to offer unique insight into the multiple challenges of the female-to-male transsexual experience, ranging from encounters with prejudice and strained relationships with family to the development of an FTM community and the realities of surgical sex reassignment.

For more than a decade, Green has provided educational programs on gender-variance issues for corporations, law-enforcement agencies, social-science conferences and classes, continuing legal education, religious education, and medical venues. His comprehensive knowledge of the processes and problems encountered by transgendered and transsexual people--as well as his legal advocacy work to help ensure that gender-variant people have access to the same rights and opportunities as others--enable him to explain the issues as no transsexual author has previously done.

Trans Mission
Mara Keisling believes the time has come for transgenders to be fully included in the politics of being GLBT
Interview by Sean Bugg

At the age of forty, a time when many people are contemplating the middle of their lives, Mara Keisling was at the beginning of a new one. In January 2000, she began her transition into life as a woman.

"I am extremely lucky," she says. "I am one of the few people I know of whose parents picked her new name."

That support from parents, family and friends is in large part responsible for Keisling's successful embarkation on her new life. She jokes about her coming out: "I didn't even lose the family members I wanted to lose."

Having spent years of her life as a man working on social marketing and health issues, Keisling was prepared in many ways to become politically involved as a transgender activist. Now 44, she's the executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), an organization founded in 2003 to focus on transgender issues from a national perspective.

In recent weeks, Keisling and transgender issues have been at the forefront with the Human Rights Campaign's announcement that it will no longer support the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) unless it specifically includes protections for transgenders, a position already taken by some LGBT groups such as the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.


Nothing wrong in being gay

In India, the lives of sexual minorities including homosexuals, bisexuals and trans-gender individuals are a nightmare. The rights of sexual minorities are not respected and they lead a life of confusion and isolation, which is often traumatic. Society tries to fit in all sexual impulses under one homogeneous umbrella and does not give any space to acknowledge anything different from a heterosexual relationship.

Everything else is categorised as deviant and looked upon as “unnatural”. Ostracism inevitably follows. Homosexuals are assumed to be “immoral”, even “promiscuous”. But the fact is that  apart from sexual orientation, there is little that is different in a homosexual than a ‘regular’ guy. Yet, they are hounded by law and society alike and treated like the aberration they are not. The general attitude is one of denial-people often “invisibalise” the issue, pretend it does not exist and move on.


On balance: Sensationalising alternate sexuality
Chapal Mehra

On August 15, Pushkin Chandra, 37, was found murdered along with his companion Kuldeep alias Vishal in an upmarket south Delhi neighbourhood. Pushkin was single, affluent, gay. Kuldeep was lower middle class, barely educated, unemployed.

It had the makings of a scandal. It was reported exactly as a scandal, loaded with intimate personal details, sleaze, sweeping generalisations. The media went to town: Was Pushkin blackmailing his assailants? What was his relationship with his family? Did he pick up men from the streets? Every article, every headline, screamed sex, gay, homosexual, pornography, multiple partners. A week later, and after going through reams of newsprint, all we know about the dead people is this: that they were gay, gay, gay.

The murders led to serious 'investigative' journalism on the side. Where do gay men meet? What kind of sex do they have? Where do they cruise?

It's been a bit like a horror film that disgusts you but you watch it still — in anticipation of what worse may happen. Only, this is not a film. This is real life — in which generalisations, as one extremely wise homosexual cautioned long ago, are extremely dangerous. The 'unveiling' or 'outing' of Delhi's gay life has ignored the larger implications that surround the reporting of a sensitive issue like homosexuality. In its search for sleaze, the media has overlooked the fact that by uninformed, one-sided and sometimes prejudiced reportage, they may do serious harm to both their readers and gay men across India. The basis for the stories has not been objectivity, but personal opinions and judgements. The media seems to have forgotten the influence they exercise on public attitudes towards sensitive issues. The homosexual community has served as a convenient, multipurpose mythic entity that has been used to paint a sleazy picture in voyeuristic public imagination.


Gay pair protest to G-G

A HARCOURT North gay couple has written to the Governor-General protesting a Bill passed by both major parties banning same-sex marriage.

Ada Milley and her partner, Prue Walduck, are calling on Governor-General Michael Jeffrey to withhold support for the Bill, saying it is a backward step for gay rights and further alienates the gay community.

Labor sided with the coalition to pass the marriage amendment Bill on August 13. The Bill defined marriage as a union between a man and woman only.   

"By the things the Liberal party has done and the Labor party has agreed to in this last week gone by, they're actually going backwards in the rights of same-sex attracted people," Ms Milley said.


Mass. man is facing hate crime charges
Union Leader Correspondent

NASHUA — A Massachusetts man is facing hate crime charges for allegedly robbing a gay New Hampshire couple outside of a convenience store last May.

Prosecutors hope to impose a harsher sentence for John Guimond, 23, of Methuen if they can convince a jury the crime was motivated by anti-gay hostility.

A grand jury this week indicted Guimond on four counts of robbery, alleging he assaulted the victims and stole several items from them. Two of the charges qualify that robbery as a hate crime, a factor that could drastically increase Guimond’s jail time if convicted.


Officials plan charges for two in arson case

PUBLIC SAFETY:An unidentified adult and juvenile are expected to be charged soon for setting a Monday fire.

Arson charges are expected to be filed against an unidentified adult and juvenile suspected of setting fire late Monday to a two-story rental property at 522 N. 11th Ave. E.

Signs of foul play were evident by crude threats written in purple lettering on the front of the house as well as multiple points of origin believed to have caused the fire, Christensen said.

Numerous media reports and interviews with Magariner, an openly gay teen, included inferences that the arson could have been hate-related. Christensen doubted that, saying, "You have to look at the totality of circumstances... sometimes criminals want to lead you in different directions."


Gay marriage issue may not make ballot
By Jim Siegel
Cincinnati Enquirer

COLUMBUS -- After reviewing petitions from four rural counties, an attorney representing opponents to a proposed gay marriage amendment already predicts the issue will not get on the November ballot.

Donald McTigue said Thursday he plans to file his first legal challenges to those petitions by Monday, beginning what could be a lengthy legal process designed to tie up the issue in court long enough to keep it away from voters.

McTigue said he has reviewed petitions certified in Marion, Morrow, Fulton and Sandusky counties and has found "numerous errors."

These include improperly filling out paperwork that show how much petitioners were paid, and improper changes in the number of signatures witnessed by each petitioner, he said.


Police continue investigating Delaware gay bashing

Rehoboth Beach, Del., police are continuing to investigate what appears to be a gay bashing of three gay men in the resort town in the early hours of August 7. One of the victims, 23-year-old Matt Beierschmitt, was featured on MTV's documentary program True Life: I'm Coming Out as well as on the cover of The Advocate in 2002.

In an e-mail to, Beierschmitt said he and two friends--Lawrence Franchetti, 26, and Will Hiley, 30--were exiting a club when three men approached them, allegedly calling them "Taliban" and "faggots." "They followed us to our car, and while [we] were inside, they kicked it," he said. "We got out to talk to them, and they apologized for their one friend's drunken behavior."


Repeal backers win 1st round
By Kevin Osborne
Post staff reporter

Repeal supporters won the first round in a legal battle to rescind a Cincinnati charter amendment that forbids passing any local laws based on sexual orientation.

A judge this week rejected a request from repeal opponents that sought a temporary restraining order to keep the repeal off the Nov. 2 ballot.

That ruling is the latest twist in the protracted political and legal wrangling over Article XII, a charter measure that prohibits the city from taking special steps aimed at preventing discrimination against gays. Gay groups, a number of top city political and business leaders and others hope to repeal the measure, while opponents are fighting to keep it in place. .


Cherokee council defines tribal marriage law
Measure would ban same-sex unions

TULSA, Oklahoma (AP) -- About a month after a lesbian couple successfully filed for a tribal marriage application, the Cherokee National Tribal Council voted to clearly define marriage as between a man and a woman.

Principal Chief Chad Smith has indicated he will sign the measure, which was approved by the council Monday night.

The change to tribal marriage law would not affect Kathy Reynolds and Dawn McKinley, who were married last month in a Cherokee ceremony. Cherokee Nation laws are not retroactive.

A Cherokee Nation District Court has scheduled a hearing Friday to discuss a legal protest of McKinley's and Reynolds' marriage application. The outcome of that hearing will determine whether their union is legal.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Transgender Woman brutally Murdered -
Family Requests Community attendance at her Vigil

An 46 year oldAfrican-American transgender woman, who went by the name Delicious,was murdered on Friday August 13, 2004 in the Franciscan Motel - 6600 3rd Street. Currently the murder is under investigation and anti-transgender bias is being looked at as a motive. Delicious' family is holding a community vigil for her on Sunday, August 22, 2004, at 7pm, at 27 Garlington Court (cross street: La Salle) in Bay View Hunter's Point.

There will be a reception following the vigil in the same neighborhood at Comma Court. Friends, family members, and the community are welcome to come & remember Delicious and support her family. Participants are welcome to bring flowers, cards & food for the reception..

If anyone has questions about the vigil please contact Tina D'Elia or Norma Garcia at CUAV (Community United Against Violence). If anyone has information regarding this case please contact Investigator Mike Mahoney at the Homicide Unit of the SFPD.

Contact Information:
Investigator Mike Mahoney: (415) 553-1145/ (415) 553-1071
Anonymous Information can be left at the Hot Tip line: (415) 553-1071
Tina D'Elia, Hate Violence Survivor Director, CUAV: (415) 777-5500 ext.304
Norma Garcia, Hate Violence Advocate, CUAV: (415) 777-5500 ext.305


Judge Bars Louisiana Vote On Gay Marriage Amendment  
by Cain Burdeau
The Associated Press

(New Orleans) A state civil district court judge in New Orleans ruled late Friday night that a proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages and civil unions is unconstitutional and must be taken off the Sept. 18 ballot

Law firm makes history again
Gay Houston law firm is among the largest and most diverse gay firms in the country

A Houston law firm that made history recently by naming a transgender partner has added two new associates, making it one of the largest and most diverse gay, lesbian and transgender law firms in the country.

The firm of Nechman, Simoneaux & Frye recently added two new associates, a lesbian and a straight woman, who bring expertise that the firm did not previously have.

Lee Jeronimo, 60, and Veena Krishnan, 30, have joined transgender attorney Phyllis Randolph Frye and gay attorneys John Nechman and Jerry Simoneaux in the firm that offices at 3400 Montrose Blvd.

John Nechman said the new additions have widened the diversity within the firm.


Commission delays vote on gay rights ordinance
Proposal would expand who is protected in city
Tribune Staff Writer

SOUTH BEND -- The South Bend Human Rights Commission has delayed making a decision on whether or not to back an ordinance that would protect rights for gays, lesbians and transgender individuals.

The ordinance -- yet to be written and proposed by Common Council Member Charlotte Pfeifer, D-2nd -- would make such individuals a protected class.

That means they could ask the commission's staff to investigate cases in which they'd felt discriminated against.


Vatican views on women annoys Indians too

A Vatican directive blaming feminism for apparently undermining the concept of family is fuelling protests in India too.

Although some Christians are justifying the papal communiqué that has triggered a storm since it came out July 31, there are many critical voices.

Ritu Menon, co-founder of the feminist publication "Kali for Women", has termed the Vatican directive as "extremely unfortunate and irresponsible".

"The protests from women are fully justified. The Vatican should not have branded feminism or women's demand for equal rights like this. Asking for equal rights cannot be termed as something bad," Menon told IANS.


Zanzibar bans gay sex
By Ally Salleh

ZANZIBAR (Reuters) - Zanzibar has banned gay sex and set prison terms of up to 25 years for those who break the law.

The law sets a penalty of life imprisonment for sodomizing a minor. The penalty for homosexual sex between men is 25 years' jail and seven years for lesbian sex. That compares to death for murder in Zanzibar and 30 years for violent robbery or rape.

"This is what we have been aspiring for. If the government takes such steps, the country will really move ahead," said Sheikh Muhammed Said, a local Islamic leader.

The office of Zanzibar's attorney general said the law took effect when the island archipelago's president, Amani Karume, signed it last week. Zanzibar's parliament, in a rare show of unity, passed the bill unanimously in April.


Amnesty Confirms:
Buju Banton Accused of Gay-Bashing
Human Rights Watch (New York) interviews victims

LONDON – 20 August 2004 (Outrage! News):  Amnesty International has confirmed reports that Jamaican reggae singer Buju Banton was allegedly involved in a homophobic attack in Kingston two moths ago.  The confirmation comes in a letter from Susan Lee, Amnesty’s  Programme Director for the Americas, to Penthouse Productions, the singer’s production company.

The letter was made public today.

“We can confirm that Amnesty International has received information from reputable national and international human rights organisations concerning reports that Buju Banton was involved in a homophobic attack,” the letter says.  “These reports take the form of statements that allege that on June 24 2004, six men were driven from their home and beaten by a group of armed men, and that the alleged assailants included Buju Banton (Mark Anthony Myrie).

“The reports further allege that this attack was apparently motivated by hatred of gay men: the victims reported that both before and during the attack the assailants had called the men “battymen” (homosexuals).  Amnesty International is further aware that several of the alleged victims were interviewed by a Human Rights Watch researcher who was in Jamaica at the time.

“Amnesty International has also received reports that several of the alleged victims made official reports to the Constant Spring police station on 25 June 2004.”


Gay teacher questions dismissal
No contract renewal for O'Dowd staffer who married in S.F.
Rona Marech, Chronicle Staff Writer

Eleven years after meeting in a college poetry class, Doug Neff and Corey Rothermel donned matching tuxedos and headed across the Bay Bridge to San Francisco City Hall, where their ministers married them.

"The best thing I ever did," Neff said.

He still feels that way, even though the nearly 4,000 same-sex marriages that took place at City Hall in February and March were ruled invalid last week by the California Supreme Court.

And he feels that way even though he believes marrying cost him his job as a religion teacher at Bishop O'Dowd, a Catholic high school in Oakland

Research to focus on housing issues for Welsh LGBs
Ben Townley, UK

LGB people in Wales who have had problems with housing are set to be the focus of new research, which its organisers claim is a first of the kind for the UK.

Commissioned by Stonewall Cymru and Triangle Wales, and funded by the Welsh Assembly, the research seeks to establish the housing needs of LGB people in the country, where equality issues are often overlooked in relation to England or Scotland.

Additionally, the study, completed by Spark Research, is hoping to highlight what statutory and regulatory requirements Welsh social housing providers are obliged to meet in relation to LGB people, as well as recommend necessary changes to the legal system and how local authorities deal with the issues.

The Project Manager of Triangle Wales, Jacqui Jablaoui, said the new survey would help uncover a subject that is often hidden from the mainstream.


US act for bi-national same-sex couples gets backing
Christopher Curtis, Network

On Thursday the California Senate passed a resolution supporting the federal Permanent Partners Immigration Act (PPIA), which could help save the relationship of a British lesbian in San Francisco.

The vote, favoured by Democrats, was 21 to 12, along party lines.

A similar resolution was passed on July 24 by the state Assembly. The measure will return to the Assembly to resolve any differences between the two versions. California State Assemblywoman Sally J Lieber authored the resolution.

"It is inherently un-American to force one population to choose between a life partner and their country, when the majority of citizens do not have to make that painful sacrifice," Assemblywoman Lieber said in a prepared statement.


Married and suing the IRS
The two men whose fluke wedding in 1971 was the basis for Minnesota’s judicial precedent banning same-sex marriage now say the Internal Revenue Service owes them $793.28 because they could not file their tax returns as a married couple
By Mike Hudson  

This is one lawsuit that’s not about the money.

Minneapolis couple Jack Baker and Michael McConnell are suing the Internal Revenue Service for $793.28. That’s the amount McConnell says he would have saved on his 2000 tax return if he and Baker had been able to file as a married couple instead of unmarried individuals.

Since August 1971—when the town of Mankato, Minn., issued them a marriage certificate—the men have argued that they are legally united. However, the state of Minnesota has always maintained that the license was mistakenly issued. According to press reports, Baker legally changed his name to Pat Lyn McConnell, which a clerk thought referred to a woman. A county attorney discovered the discrepancy and revoked the license.


Kerry would create firefighter's fund in name of gay priest

During an impassioned speech to the International Association of Fire Fighters convention in Boston on Thursday, Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry committed to creating a firefighters fund in the name of an openly gay priest who was killed in the September 11 terrorist attacks.


Wash. Woman Thrust Into Gay Marriage Fight
Associated Press Writer

Lee Kandu never wanted to be a crusader for same-sex marriage. The Castle Rock, Wash., woman just wanted to file for bankruptcy protection so she could keep her house after her spouse - a woman she married in Canada - was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

But her case thrust her into the national debate when a federal judge in Tacoma ruled that Lee and Ann Kandu, a lesbian couple, can not file jointly for bankruptcy protection as a married couple. Federal law, the judge ruled, defines marriage as a "legal union between one man and one woman."

Judge Paul Snyder's Tuesday ruling marks the first time a federal court has upheld the constitutionality of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.


Aglipay: Gays not psychologically fit to be cops
By Joel Francis Guinto

INCOMING Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Edgar Aglipay belittled the idea of homosexuals entering the police force, saying they would flunk the required test on "psychological fitness."

While he said no law prohibited gays and lesbians from joining the police force, Aglipay said homosexuals would have a "problem" with the test.

"I doubt they will pass," he told reporters late Thursday evening.

Aglipay said he was clarifying earlier reports that quoted him as saying that he approved of homosexuals in the PNP.


Rosales, gay activist group hit Aglipay for anti-gay remarks
(Mla time)
By Maila Ager

THE AUTHOR of a bill that would penalize discrimination against gay men and women, and a gay activist group, criticized incoming Philippine National Police chief Edgar Aglipay on Friday for saying homosexuals were not psychologically fit to be members of the police force.

Akbayan Representative Loretta Ann Rosales said Aglipay should have first read and studied her measure before making prejudicial statements.

"I welcome his [Aglipay's] opinion; maybe he was just pressured or confused. But if he wants I can send him the copy of the bill. He needs to read and study it to be able to have an open mind," Rosales said in a telephone interview.

She was reacting to remarks Aglipay made to reporters late Thursday evening that homosexuals were not likely to pass the psychological test required of those wishing to join the police, although he said no law banned them from applying.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

by: GLBTSSS, OIA Newswire

A Tucson woman is running for the Arizona House of Representatives and
making history.

Amanda Simpson is head of advanced and special programs at Raytheon. KOLD News 13 introduced you to her three years ago, when she went public with her sex change. Now,

Simpson is set to be the first transsexual in the nation to win a primary.

Simpson doesn't want her gender to take away from her plans for the future of Arizona. Her political platform includes improving education, dealing with Arizona's explosive population growth, and affordable healthcare.

But politics can get dirty. And Simpson says she plans to stay away from the
mud slinging by sticking to the issues.


Gayscape: Not quite in the pink of health

MUMBAI: The murder of two gay men in an upscale New Delhi apartment last week provided a ready excuse for gay baiters to go ill-will hunting.

There were rich pickings for those who hissed about the underbelly of gay life what with the murdered couple found in the midst of a scatter of risque polaroid photographs.

Perfect grist for those who subscribe to the stereotype that gay men are promiscuous and have little else on their minds.

But if there is some cold solace to be drawn from this gruesome crime and the resulting sleaze offensive, it is that the murder was most probably not a gay-hate crime but the result of a personal fallout.

This wasn't like the Matthew Shephard case, where he was tied to a fence post in freezing Wyoming temperatures, pistol whipped and left to die primarily because he was gay.


Pushkin case: Activists slam sensationalisation

NEW DELHI: In a sharp reaction to media reports on homosexuality, following Pushkin Chandra and his friend Kuldip's murder in Anand Lok, a gay rights group on Thursday said the whole incident had been sensationalised.

The speakers of the group protested against the way the police and the media had hijacked the Pushkin incident to focus on his sexuality rather than the crime itself.

Pramada Menon, one of the speakers, said: "One person's death has brought an entire community into focus. Newspapers are suddenly full of stories about homosexual life - and not in a celebratory way."

Others said that reportage over the past few days had chosen to focus on the 'dark lives' of the gay community. "A stray incident has been used to stereotype them all and an already marginalised community is further being pushed into the margins," said Menon.


Media, cops slammed
Naziya Alvi

Prominent NGOs criticised the Delhi Police and the media for their 'role' in the investigations into the Anand Lok murder case. These NGOs dealing with human rights and rights of same sex desiring people held a conference on Wednesday, where they aired their views.


Lawyer: Gay marriage amendment flap on fast track to high court
The Associated Press  

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Lower courts have the issue now but the legal wrangling over a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages and civil unions is quickly heading toward the Louisiana Supreme Court, a lawyer said on Thursday.

Lawyers supporting gay rights have filed lawsuits in Baton Rouge and in New Orleans to keep the amendment off the upcoming ballot on Sept. 18.

"All of this will ultimately be decided by the Louisiana Supreme Court, as it should," said Randy Evans, a New Orleans lawyer who represents Forum for Equality and three other plaintiffs challenging the constitutional amendment.

Forum for Equality argues that the ban would violate the Louisiana Constitution's guarantee of individuals' rights to enter into contracts and own property; they say it would invalidate contracts which gay and lesbian partners have drawn up to own houses together or to share responsibility for children. Backers of the amendment in the Legislature say it does not go that far.


Federal judge: DOMA is constitutional

A federal judge in Washington State has backed the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act. The decision, made public Tuesday, is the first to address the constitutionality of the federal law, which defines marriage as a "legal union between one man and one woman." Two American women, Lee and Ann Kandu, were married in British Columbia and filed a joint bankruptcy petition in Tacoma a short time later. Their petition was opposed by the Justice Department on the grounds that the federal marriage law prohibited it. Federal bankruptcy judge Paul B. Snyder found that the bankruptcy code allows spouses to file joint petitions, noting, however, that the marriage law specifies that spouse refers only to a person of the opposite sex.
Snyder found that gays and lesbians have no fundamental right to marriage and that the 1996 law does not violate the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution by allowing members of the opposite sex to wed but not members of the same sex


Police study CCTV footage after gay attack
By William Allen

POLICE in Londonderry were today studying seized CCTV footage in their bid to crack down on homophobic attacks in the city.

The PSNI appealed again for information about an attack on a gay 29-year-old man at Glendermott Road last Saturday.

And, following a series of assaults throughout Derry, they urged all victims to come forward, or to contact a local gay rights organisation.

"The weekend incident is currently under investigation and CCTV footage has been seized to establish if video evidence of the attack is available," said a PSNI spokesman.


Indian lesbians fight for their right to be happy and 'gay'

BHOPAL: Two girls in this conservative Madhya Pradesh capital have broken the shackles of prejudice and asserted their right to live as a same sex couple with police telling their parents that they had not committed any crime.

On Wednesday, 24-year-old Kajal and 19-year-old Nisha went missing again after their parents approached the police who expressed their helplessness and advised them to consult counsellors. The girls just did not turn up at the counsellors'.

Their disappearance caps a two-year saga with all the elements of a dramatic romance including running away together, a forced marriage and massive parental opposition - all the more extraordinary as the girls come from a working class background, have studied till only Class 8 and don't really have the means to sustain themselves.

Both the girls have reportedly made their intentions clear to their parents and declared that that they want to live together for the rest of their lives.

Criminal to be gay?
Section 377 IPC, framed in 1860, defines homosexuality as a crime. Delhi Times examines the relevance of this archaic law

A number of countries worldwide might have legalised gay and lesbian rights, but India is still governed by Section 377 of the IPC. Framed in 1860 by the British (ironically, this law was repealed in the UK in 1967), this anachronistic law brands consensual adult love between people of the same sex as sodomy, and imposes punishment as extreme as life imprisonment. The reality is that male-male sex is not uncommon in India. In fact, a recent study reveals that close to 10 per cent unmarried men and 3 per cent married men report sex with other men.

"The problem doesn't lie only with the law but also with its interpretation. It states that the act of being caught with someone having unnatural sex is a criminal offence," says gay activist Shaleen Rakesh of the Naaz Foundation, "While this could apply to heterosexual relationships as well, the law has been misused to harass gays." Adds Supreme Court lawyer Amit Khemka: "Yes, this law could apply just as well to heterosexuals. It's high time Section 377 was changed or removed, specially when sex is no longer seen as something procreative -- it's a statement."


MCC responds to Vatican attack on feminism

LOS ANGELES - In the wake of the Vatican's latest attack on feminism, Metropolitan Community Churches responded with an affirmation of its historic commitment to feminism, and to the full equality of women and men in the Church and society.

"We are saddened that the Vatican leadership once again finds itself in opposition to those universal spiritual principles that value and celebrate the giftedness of women to the Church and to our world," said The Reverend Elder Troy D. Perry, Moderator of the 43,000 member Metropolitan Community Churches.

Over 50 percent of MCC clergy are women, a higher percentage than any other Christian denomination.

Perry continued, "It is worth noting that religious leaders who attack social and spiritual equality for women also use their religion to legitimize the denigration of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender persons."


‘I am different, so are all of us’

FOR the first time after his murder on August 14, Pushkin Chandra’s family spoke about their loss today. Gathered for a prayer meeting at Chinmaya Mission in Lodi Estate, Chandra’s father A K Chandra and brother Mohit Chandra spoke about Pushkin before friends and relatives who had assembled to share their grief.

It gave an insight into the mind of a man who has been the subject of much speculation in the past few days. Speaking after the prayer meet, Pushkin’s father A K Chandra said, ‘‘I preserved an email that Pushkin wrote to me in the early 1990s from the US. He wrote to me, ‘Dear Papa, I love you. I am different but so are all of us. But that does not mean that I don’t love you. Mom, Papa, I love you very much’.’’

Chandra added, ‘‘I had decided not to speak about him but this morning I felt that I owed it to him. Pushkin and I spent 38 fun-filled years together. We shared a good relationship and had a lot of fun.’’

Chandra added, ‘‘Pushkin had a great sense of humour. Even as a child when he was 10 years old, I remember I had taken him for admission to a private school in Delhi. The candidates had to write an essay on ‘What will you do if you become the Prime Minister of India?’ Pushkin as usual wrote ‘‘I don’t want to be Prime Minister because I am very lazy.’’ Chandra concluded, ‘‘the evening of my life has come, Pushkin is gone.’’

The Chicago Trans/GenderQueer Film/Video Festival
AUGUST 28, 2004

Calling all trans-activists*, women, queers, male feminists, media activists, intersexed hackers, radical educators, genderchangers, direct-actors, performance artists, anti-racists, mothers, documentarians, prop collectors, youth video collectives, squatters, fence-climbers, cyber-feminists**, urban farmers, prison abolitionists, women’s health-care providers, all-girl graffiti crews, resistant bodies and trespassers of all kinds !!!

PILOT TV is a hybrid activist convergence taking the form of a do-it-yourself television studio. We invite you to take part in 4 days and nights of participatory, creative problem-solving to rethink how we “stage” protest. Help us turn a three-story Chicago building into a fully functioning hollywood studio, replete with fantastical sets, collaborative crews, and improvised madness.

Stage a panel discussion as a talk show, lead a workshop as a cooking show, get behind a camera, sew a costume, party all night, or just show up and get involved in the conversation. PILOT will be an open-ended space for those of us involved in the global anticapitalist movement to come together in sweat-space, build momentum, and strategize our biopolitical resistance on (and off) camera.

As the last vestiges of public space, natural resources, and community-control are bought-off, our bodies will continue to be the final line in the struggle for autonomy. Join us at the PILOT laboratory for 4 days of fleshy resistance, aesthetic experiments and tactical performance! Trespass the corporate control of media with nomadic TV, pirate radio broadcasts, and guerrilla drive-in screenings! Enjoy parties, community meals, and do things on camera that you could never do legally in real life!

There are many different ways to participate during the weekend! Let us know what you are interested in doing so we can connect you to the people and resources you need to complete your project. Send us a full script, a drawing, or just a few sentence description. (The deadline for proposals has been extended to August 20th 2004!)



A group of seven young gay male students were arrested on July 20, 2004, in Zona Rosa, Cuauhtemoc District, Mexico City, and charged with engaging in sex work. Police had no evidence that they were sex workers, and they had not made any attempt to collect such evidence. Three of the men were required to pay fines in order to be released and four others spent 13 hours in custody. According to a policewoman, the police targeted the friends because two of men were holding hands. Similar incidents have occurred in recent months, in flagrant violation of the country’s very progressive Federal Law to Prevent and Eliminate Discrimination (that includes sexual preferences and their expression in public)



Date : August 16, 2004
Africa » Zimbabwe » For Your Information

The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) has been monitoring the recent rise of homophobic attacks in Zimbabwe. On August 2nd, members of the Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) were forced to flee from an international book fair held in Harare when an angry mob attacked them. Several of the group were physically injured. Just in March, Zimbabwe's president, Robert Mugabe, celebrating his 80th birthday, said "I'm morally repulsed by homosexuality." Mugabe has a long history of homophobic attacks in the country, and has stated that he considers gays men and lesbians "worse than pigs and dogs." On several occasions has ordered police to round up and jail gays and lesbians.

Below you will find a statement released by Keith Goddard of GALZ.

Statement from the Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ)
Dated Wednesday 4th August 2004

Regarding an incident at ZIBF on Monday 2nd August 2004

In August 1996, the Supreme Court confirmed the right of GALZ to participate at the Zimbabwe International Book Fair. Between 1997 and 2002, the association exhibited by placing its information on the Book Fair Human Rights Stand. In 2003, GALZ applied to participate in its own right and, quite correctly, the application was treated exactly like that of any other exhibitor. At last year’s event there were no incidents of violence. GALZ applied again this year and was accepted.

On Monday afternoon, a GALZ member at the GALZ stand was gratuitously attacked by a member of the public. Although minor, the incident was reported to the police who acted in a professional manner and arrested the culprit. The GALZ member decided not to press charges. The incident was also brought to the attention of the Book Fair Administration Clerk who expressed satisfaction at the way the police had handled the matter.

GALZ does not condone violence and we are not a threat. Those who cause violence are a threat to public safety and security and we ask that they stay away from our stand.

Keith Goddard
- Director, Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ)

Dickson protects hate speech

If you're a lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered youth in Southern California, you've probably got enough to worry about without having your school board sanction open harassment by your peers. Unfortunately, some elected officials have chosen ideological zealotry over the welfare of our children.

It happened in Westminster this year. Extreme conservative school board members decided to reject the state's guidelines protecting transgendered people from discrimination and harassment, even though doing so risked thousands of dollars. Outraged parents and community members have launched a recall effort to remove those board members who place their religiously motivated intolerance ahead of providing educational services to children.

Sad to say, we've got a similar problem here in Southwest Riverside County.
Murrieta school board President Kenneth Dickson opposes a proposed school policy which would ban harassment of students on account of race, religion, gender and sexuality.

Students are prevented from discussing important issues, Dickson told me, by these


Schools get tougher on same-sex torment

Philadelphia school officials yesterday put more teeth into a handful of existing policies, including language to aid those who suffer sexual harassment by members of their own sex.

The anti-same-sex-discrimination language, for the first time, was inserted into the district's sexual-harassment policy for students. It has been under discussion since last year.

Also added are provisions giving students the right to call police and to take their complaints to regional superintendents if their principal is accused of sexual harassment.

Those changes were approved 4-0 by the Philadelphia School Reform Commission, as were the following:



CARBONDALE -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale will extend medical benefits to gay and lesbian employees Sept. 1, a statement from the university released Wednesday said.

The statement, e-mailed to local media about 4:30 p.m., said SIUC "amended its 11-year-old domestic partnership policy to cover partial costs of health and dental care premiums purchased privately by employees to cover their same-sex domestic partners and their partners' children."

The statement also said the benefits will extend to tuition waivers within the SIU system. Both the Carbondale and Edwardsville campuses, as well as the university system, will be consistent with the changes.

SIUC already had a same-sex domestic partner benefits extension policy with regard to sick leave, bereavement leave, family medical leave and use of campus facilities.

Gay Couples Plan to Appeal Mass. Ruling
Out-Of-State Gay Couples Plan to Appeal Ruling on 1913 Massachusetts Law
The Associated Press

BOSTON Aug. 19, 2004 — A state judge upheld a 1913 law that prohibits out-of-state gay couples from marrying in Massachusetts, where same-sex marriage between residents has been legal since May.

The eight couples who filed the lawsuit from Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine and New York sought a preliminary injunction blocking enforcement of the statute, claiming it is inherently discriminatory.

The law prohibits marriages that would not be legal in couples' home states.

In a ruling handed down Wednesday, Superior Court Judge Carol Ball said the law is being applied equally to all nonresidents. For instance, it has been used to stop marriages of couples who didn't meet their states' age requirement for marriage.

"Clerks were instructed to do so for all couples and all impediments, not just for same-sex couples," Ball wrote.


Proposed gay marriage ban one step closer to ballot in Ohio

Backers of a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage in Ohio still don't know if it will be on the November 2 ballot, but their proposed language for the issue was approved Tuesday. The Ohio Ballot Board unanimously approved the language, proposed by the Cincinnati-based group Citizens for Community Values. The language says that if the issue passes, the state will recognize only unions between one man and one woman as marriage.


Keyes wags finger at opposition
By Eric Krol Daily Herald Political Writer

Republican U.S. Senate nominee Alan Keyes used his first major public speech Wednesday to say gay people are sinners, those who would allow women to have abortions in cases of rape or incest lack integrity and his opponent is like a socialist for supporting big government.


Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Proposed Louisiana gay marriage ban facing several challenges

Efforts to prevent a September 18 vote on a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages and civil unions in Louisiana are proceeding on several fronts, lawyers said Tuesday. Gay rights lawyers plan to file an appeal with the first circuit court of appeals in Baton Rouge on Wednesday following a Baton Rouge judge's Monday refusal to stop a vote on the amendment. In New Orleans, civil district court judge Christopher Bruno has scheduled a Friday afternoon hearing to determine whether to make permanent his ruling last week that the vote cannot go on because it was not scheduled on a regular statewide election day (nine parishes had no other elections planned on September 18). Other aspects of the case are pending at the state fourth circuit court of appeals in New Orleans.

Sex Change Can Cause Headache
By Karla Gale

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - New research involving male-to-female transsexuals lends further credence to the theory that sex hormones are involved in migraine generation, physicians report in the medical journal Neurology.

"We know that migraine is more frequent in women than in men," co-investigator Dr. Tamara Pringsheim told Reuters Health, "so a lot of research goes into what estrogen does to the brain."

A new way to examine this issue, she added, is to look at a population of genetic males who take antiandrogens and estrogen to induce female sex characteristics.

Pringsheim, at the University of Toronto, and Dr. Louis Gooren, at Free University Amsterdam, distributed questionnaires regarding headache symptoms and frequency to 50 transsexuals who had recently undergone sex reassignment surgery, all of whom were taking hormonal therapy.


"Back to being not quite equal"
By Roger Dyer and Elizabeth Schulte

IN A 5-2 decision on August 12, the California Supreme Court struck down San Francisco's same-sex marriages, declaring that some 4,000 weddings between gays and lesbians performed earlier this year are null and void. The decision comes six months after San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom announced that the city would begin issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples.

In an enthusiastic scene recalling the civil rights movement of the 1960s, thousands flooded the San Francisco’s City Hall to get their licenses. But in its decision this month, the court ruled that Newsom had overstepped his bounds in defying state law, which defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman.
By ruling on such narrow grounds, the court ducked the larger issue of determining whether such a fundamentally discriminatory law is unconstitutional to begin with. That will be decided by the high court at a later date, after more lawsuits make their way through lower courts.

For now, gay and lesbian couples are left in limbo, wondering what will happen to benefits such as parental rights, family insurance discounts and medical coverage. "I know they're not making a judgment on the constitutionality of same-sex marriage, but they are saying there are no same-sex marriages," said 24-year-old Karen Carrington, who married her partner six months ago. To me, that meant, okay, I'm back to being half a person, not quite a citizen, not quite an American."

State Senate urges Congress to reject constitutional amendment
Associated Press

SACRAMENTO - The California Senate urged Congress on Wednesday to reject a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriages.

By a 21-13 vote, senators approved a resolution by Assemblyman Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, that urges Congress to reject any legislation that would "prohibit or restrict" the rights of same-sex couples.

Last month, the U.S. Senate scuttled an amendment banning gay marriage, but supporters said they wouldn't give up.

A little over a week later, the House of Representatives approved legislation that would bar federal judges from ordering states to recognize same-sex marriages that took place in other states.


Mass. Judge Denies Relief to Gay Couples
Associated Press

BOSTON - A state judge on Wednesday rejected a challenge of a 1913 law barring out-of-state gay couples from marrying in Massachusetts, where residents have had that first-in-the-nation right since May.

Superior Court Judge Carol Ball denied a request by eight gay couples from other states for a preliminary injunction blocking Massachusetts from enforcing the law, which prohibits marriages that would not be legal in couples' home states.

An attorney for the plaintiffs said they are considering several avenues of appeal, and believe the case ultimately will be decided by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.

"We always knew this was really just round one, and round two will be at the appellate court," said Michele Granda, an attorney with Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders.


Beenie Man Concert Tour Caves Under Gay Pressure
by Tom Garvey

Not long ago, Jamaican reggae star Beenie Man (real name: Anthony Moses Davis) seemed on the verge of mainstream success. His last album had featured collaborations with Janet Jackson and L’il Kim, both a European and American tour were scheduled for the summer, and he would reach a national U.S. audience for the first time via an appearance on Conan O’Brien.

But there was a dirty little secret behind his pulsing “riddims” and Jamaican patois: Beenie Man explicitly incited the murder of gay people. In his hit “Damn”, for instance, the singer called on fans to come to Jamaica to “execute all the gays”, and earlier songs had described hanging lesbians “wit a long rope” and killing gay DJs. Perhaps not coincidentally, gay bashing had recently become something of a blood sport on his home island, and Jamaica’s only “out” gay activist, Brian Williamson, was found murdered in his home earlier this year.


Still 'nay' to gays?

The recent murder of a USAID employee may or may not be linked to his sexual preferences but it has certainly lifted the wraps from what still lingers as a subterranean culture in the Capital. Yes, the gay community of Dilli still hasn't been able to come out of the closet, despite a growing permissiveness. Delhi Times on the 'underground' network in our 'cosmopolitan' city...

In 2003, a case was registered when a gay was blackmailed by a 'straight' friend who managed to get hold of a few photographs where the victim held another man's hands.

* The same year, another doctor from Central Delhi became a victim when the man he picked up from CP looted not just Rs 5,000 from him but also took away his medical equipment.

* In 2002, a college student was sent for psychiatric treatment by his parents after he confessed to them that he was gay. Apparently, the electric shocks made him a vegetable.

* In 2001, an NGO that fought for the cause of AIDS and gays was raided and charged of running a sex shop. Incidentally, according to Article 377 (an archaic law since 1863), same sex relationships are nothing less than a criminal offence. All that needs to be done is to accuse one of them and the case shall be registered as a criminal offence immediately.

Same sex partners denied status

Civil Union supporters have told MPs that same-sex partners are being denied next-of-kin status.

A select committee is hearing submissions on controversial legislation which would allow same-sex and defacto couples to have their relationships legally recognised.

Calum Bennachie told the committee his father disowned him when he came out as gay. But he says when he was admitted to hospital it was his father rather than his long-term partner who had all the legal rights.

Bennachie says same-sex partners can also find themselves shut out of funeral arrangements for their loved ones. 


Hate crime charges against boy dropped
By EVE HIGHTOWER, Democrat staff writer

Hate crime charges against a 16-year-old boy from Davis were dropped Tuesday during a Yolo County court hearing of a vandalism case.

A lack of evidence led District Attorney David Henderson to drop the hate crimes charges against a Davis teen, who allegedly vandalized the private property of gay, black and other Davis residents, according to Raphael Moore.

Moore is the attorney for Robert Russell. Russell, an openly gay man, maintained he was a victim of a hate crime when a group of four teenage vandals threw entire flats of eggs on his car Oct. 26. The vandals caused more than $4,000 in damage because liquid from the eggs seeped into the engine.

Belfast Gay Man Beaten By Skinhead

A 29-year-old gay man needed hospital treatment after being attacked in Belfast. The assault is the latest in a growing number of homophobic attacks on gay men in the city.

The victim needed five stitches to his eye after being struck in the face by a skinhead at around 2.30am on Glendermott Road in the Waterside area of Belfast.

Over the past year attacks on the gay community have risen by 60%. A few weeks ago another gay man was kicked and savagely bitten in the face in nearby Melrose Terrace.

To try and combat the problem gay groups have devised a range of measures to help local gay people defend themselves from attack.


People En Español le da una voz a la comunidad LGBT
take action >write now! > People En Español le da una voz a la comunidad LGBT
27 de julio de 2,004
Comuníquese con Mónica Taher: Directora de Medios de Comunicación
Teléfono: (323) 634-2025   Email:

Una vez más, People en Español se convierte en lo que es hoy por hoy la revista en español en los Estados Unidos que va a la vanguardia al cubrir asuntos con temática lésbica, gay, bisexual y transgénero (LGBT) en una forma seria, veraz y objetiva.

People en Español publicó en octubre del año pasado un perfil de la primera pareja en conllevar una unión civil en Buenos Aires, Argentina; así también como en su ejemplar de los 50 más Bellos, la revista hizo hincapié en una forma muy natural de que 3 de los escogidos erán gay y su perfil leía acerca de como ellos eran solteros y buscaban a la pareja ideal.

En el mes de junio la revista publicó un artículo acerca de los índices del suicidio en los jóvenes LGBT. Cabe recalcar que People en Español siempre se ha caracterizado por sus fotos en donde muchos artistas han aparecido apoyando causas para reunir fondos para contrarrestar el VIH/SIDA y causas LGBT.

Por ésto - y por lo que People en Español está por hacer: les decimos !GRACIAS!


Met to focus on homophobia in the media
Ben Townley, UK

The Metropolitan Police is launching a widespread investigation into allegations of homophobia in the public media, as a direct response to the ongoing campaign against anti-gay lyrics.

It is hoped that the investigation, which will result in a dossier presented to the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) for approval, will ensure that all force areas are working to fight homophobia, UK learnt in a statement today.

The statement from the Met said that a broad range of allegations would be looked at for the investigation, as will the police response to the problem.

"Cases that will be included in the ACPO docket include a range of allegations of homophobia in the public media including websites, newspaper articles and radio," the statement said


Texas Schools: 'Sex Doesn't Include Condoms'

(Lewisville, Texas) The Lewisville, Texas school district is under fire for a high school health course on sex that makes no mention of condoms.

Preliminary approval has been given to four new textbooks that only discuss the importance of abstinence. Only one of the four makes a passing remark to condoms and even then the word condoms never appears. They are referred to as a '"barrier method'.

The course will not mention contraceptives or give widely recognized disease control information.

"We are facing a small core group of people on the far right who believe that we should not be giving kids complete information and we think that's dangerous," Dan Quinn, public affairs director for the Texas Freedom Network told the Lewisville Leader.


HUSBANDS NEVER GUESSED I WAS BORN A BOY(sic - not a boy but intersex)
By Jane Simon

ONLY her mother and younger brother know the truth. For most of her life Anna Taylor has lived with the secret that she was born a boy.

While Big Brother's Nadia merely kept the fact that she was a transsexual woman from her housemates, Anna hid the truth of her gender from the world.

Anna, 45, has been married twice and neither of her husbands knew - or even suspected - that she had been born a boy.

Now Anna has decided to share her amazing secret with The Daily Mirror.


Gay marriage ban wording stays
Effort to alter unclear ballot language fails
By Jim Siegel
Enquirer Columbus Bureau

COLUMBUS - The Ohio Ballot Board on Tuesday rejected an attempt to alter ballot wording of a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage.

The board, led by Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, voted 5-0 to place the two-sentence amendment on the November ballot as written, over objections from opponents who said impact of the language is unclear.

"The language as it's proposed, at best, is so ambiguous and so unclear that proponents have offered four or five explanations of what it means," said Alan Melamed, chairman of Ohioans Protecting the Constitution.

"We have to put before the citizens of this state an amendment with language they can understand."


Sex-change patient jailed; missed child support  
By Jason Riley
The Courier-Journal

Megan Edrington might be a woman trapped in a man's body, but to a Jefferson County, Ky., judge, she's simply a deadbeat dad.

Citing the fact that Edrington is more than $6,000 behind in child-support payments — even as she has spent thousands of dollars on a gender-change procedure — Family Court Judge Kevin Garvey sent Edrington to jail yesterday.

"I'm upset because you have put me in a position where I have to put you in jail," Garvey told Edrington yesterday.

"I don't like it; I don't want to do it."

Edrington, who legally changed her name from Craig to Megan, says she can't afford to make the $1,300 in monthly child-support payments because she hasn't been able to find work since losing her engineering job two years ago, after she began her transformation. Court records show more than a half-dozen rejection letters.

But Garvey had refused to reduce Edrington's child support payment, deciding in January that if Edrington could afford to begin the medical process to become a female, she could afford the full amount of child support.


Pressure rises for gay gov to quit

TRENTON, N.J. -- Gov. James E. McGreevey returned to the Statehouse this week hoping to get back to work after his stunning resignation announcement. He met with cabinet members and his homeland security advisers and took steps to hand over the reins of his administration to the new governor.

But the turmoil surrounding his resignation doesn't seem to be going away.

Republicans continue to demand that he leave office now, and state Democrats are looking to Sen. Jon Corzine as a possible candidate in a special election if McGreevey were to step down immediately.

Senate President Richard J. Codey, a Democrat who is to become acting governor when McGreevey leaves office, says McGreevey would not be pushed into stepping down before his chosen departure date.


Human Rights Watch:
Defends the rights of the LGBT communities

Nueva York, GLADD. -Aiming to permanently fight human rights violations due to sexual orientation or gender identity, Human Rights Watch has started a Human Rights Project for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgendered.

Human Rights Watch is a human rights organization that conducts researches and offers political recommendations. Through supervision, information and campaigns, Human Rights Watch has promoted fundamental human rights in more than 90 countries for 25 years.

While developing the project last March, Kenneth Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, visited Cairo to release the report on the persecution of men suspected of having sexual relations with other men in Cairo. The report is titled “In A Time of Torture: The Assault on Justice in Egypt’s Crackdown on Homosexual Conduct”.

The Human Rights Project is developed under the supervision of Scott Long, who reported that Human Rights Watch has been lobbying extensively with the Egyptian government, as well as with European and American leaders in order to stop the arrests.

He added that during March and April this initiative was in Geneva, Switzerland, in the United Nations Human Rights Commission and in the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), along with other organizations from several countries promoted the participation and attendance of activists during these sessions, who spoke about the Commission’s sessions about abuses due to sexual orientation and gender identity.


Neo-Nazi activity in New Paltz raises concerns

NEW PALTZ, N.Y. Anti-racism groups in New Paltz are banding together to counter a rise in neo-Nazi activity in the Hudson Valley village where marriage ceremonies for gay couples have been performed.

New Paltz Mayor Jason West says "white power" graffiti has been found in the village and neo-Nazi literature has been distributed.

West says members of skinhead groups have been in the village this summer, resulting in confrontations with anti-racism activists.


County may add health benefit

Rockland County may expand its health insurance policy to include retired employees' domestic partners.

Lawmakers are considering legislation that would allow county-funded medical insurance to cover retirees' domestic partners, just as it does current employees' domestic partners.

The county began offering health insurance coverage to domestic partners of current county employees in February. Both same-sex and unmarried heterosexual couples are eligible.    

But the new legislation does not say if the expanded health insurance would be retroactive and cover partners of all retirees, or cover eligible employees who have retired since February.


Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Hiroshima court approves sex-change registration application

HIROSHIMA — The Hiroshima Family Court has approved an application by a transsexual to alter her officially registered sex from male to female under a new law, sources close to the case said Tuesday.

The sources said the court approved the change last Friday after concluding that the applicant fulfilled all requirements under the new legislation that took effect July 16. It was the first such approval in Hiroshima Prefecture


Official says Canada won't fight gay vows
by Ann Rostow
PlanetOut Network

As same-sex marriage battles erupt across the United States in one form or another, the war over marriage in Canada may be moving toward the mop-up stages. Speaking to the Canadian Bar Association, Justice Minister Irwin Cotler said the federal government will no longer oppose or delay any future challenges to provincial marriage laws.

To date, same-sex marriage has been legalized by court order in the most populous provinces, including Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec and, last month, the Yukon. Although the federal government didn't actively oppose the challenge to Yukon marriage laws, as was the case in previous lawsuits, it did ask the provincial court to delay any action until the Canadian Supreme Court weighs in on the subject next year. The Yukon bench refused, and also ordered the provincial and federal governments to pay court costs.


12 months' probation ordered in 2002 assault on homosexual
By Eric Weslander, Journal-World

A judge Friday ordered a year's probation for the man convicted of punching Lawrence resident Jeffrey Medis in 2002 during a scuffle outside the Replay Lounge.

But the sentencing of Luke E. Wells, 24, Manhattan, won't get Medis one of his main objective: help paying his medical bills and other damages. Medis, who is openly gay and characterized the punch as a hate crime, suffered broken upper and lower jaws, a broken nose, a fractured eye socket and a gash on his chin after falling onto a concrete planter.

So far, he's rung up about $19,000 in medical and dental bills. He is seeking more than $75,000 from Wells in a civil lawsuit that's yet to be settled.

"I would just like to see something done about all his medical bills," Medis' mother, Linda, of Shawnee, said outside the courtroom after the sentencing.


No breakthrough in gay murder case:
New Delhi:

Four days after the brutal murder of a USAID employee and his male partner, Delhi Police are yet to make a breakthrough in tracing the killers, who are suspected to be male prostitutes.

The naked bodies of USAID official Pushkin Chandra and his partner, Kuldeep, were found Saturday in the first floor annexe of the Chandras' house in the upmarket Anand Lok neighbourhood in south Delhi.

Chandra was living separately in the annexe after his parents objected to his lifestyle, which included late night parties and frequent drinking sessions, police said.

Senior police officials admitted several leads were being followed up but there were no specific clues regarding the killers, who were last seen with the victims at a party Friday night.
A senior official said: "We have prepared rough sketches of the two men. But there is no information about their

Law protecting Third Sex proposed, backed

A party-list lawmaker has taken the cudgels for gays and lesbians who are usually the victims of acts of discrimination in society.

Akbayan Rep. Loretta Ann Rosales has sought the imposition of stiff penalties that include a R500,000 fine against any person or entity who would violate a proposed law seeking to ban wrongful treatment of members of the Third Sex.

Lady solons Reps. Nanette Castelo-Daza (Lakas, Quezon City); Annie Susano (Lakas, Quezon City); and Consuelo Dy (Kampi, Pasay City) said they expect groundswell support for the measure in the chamber.
“We anticipate gay and lesbian rights organizations to fully back the measure which is very timely and long overdue,” Daza said.

In filing House Bill (HB) No. 634, Rosales stressed the urgency of enactment of laws that would protect members of the third sex against discriminatory practices based on sex or sexual orientation and gender identity.

Transvestite(sic) is jailed for vice

A THAI man(?) who dressed as a woman and paraded in the street has been jailed for two months.

The 29-year-old transvestite will be deported as soon as he finishes his sentence.

Police spotted him in a dress, full make-up, high heels and carrying a handbag in a Manama street, in March this year.

He was talking to a Bahraini man who ran off when the police approached, the Lower Criminal Court heard.



CARBONDALE -- The Southern Illinois community may not like the idea of Southern Illinois University extending medical benefits to partners of gay and lesbian employees, but on the Carbondale campus the tone seems more favorable.

Sensing the issue would arise in the upcoming semester at SIUC, many faculty, staff and student groups discussed their positions on the matter in the spring and over the summer. Some have come to a conclusion, others are still on the fence; all groups are curious as to what the board of trustees will ultimately decide

Jake Baggott, chair of SIUC's administrative and professional staff council, said members of the council passed a resolution to support a board decision extending benefits to same-sex couples last spring.


Rap stars targeted by police for lyrics inciting gay hatred
By Jason Bennetto

An inquiry into homophobia in song lyrics and within the media has been launched by police and Crown prosecutors.

The crackdown on offensive material has been set up following a growing number of complaints to police about allegedly homophobic language.

As part of the review, the Crown Prosecution Service is re-examining the lyrics of four of the most famous Jamaican dancehall artists who are accused of using homophobic language, including calls to kill gays, to consider charging them with criminal offences.

There has been growing frustration within the police and gay communities that despite apparently explicit lyrics and comments that are clearly homophobic, there have been no prosecutions.


Korea not ready for gay marriages

The Greek philosopher Plato said there were three original human sexes - man, woman, and a union of the two - and acknowledged the possibility of same-sex love. Korean authorities don't agree.

In the first ruling by a Korean court on same-sex marriages, Incheon district court in late July dismissed a divorce suit by a lesbian couple on the grounds it did not meet the definition of marriage in Korean society.

Plaintiff A, 45, and defendant B, 47, lived together for 21 years. When they suddenly broke up, A sued B for compensation.

Throwing out the case, chief judge Lee Sang-in said marriage in Korean society means the mental and physical union of a male and female under monogamist customs. A gay couple's life does not meet that standard under social concepts or family orders.


Gay marriage ballot issue headed to state’s high court
John Hill

BATON ROUGE — Gay activists lost a second round Monday in their three-court attack on the constitutionality of the Sept. 18 proposition prohibiting gay marriage or civil unions.
No matter what any lower court rules, the issue is headed quickly to the state Supreme Court.

State District Court Judge Mike Caldwell of Baton Rouge on Monday morning ruled that the Forum for Equality’s lawsuit — one of three — was filed prematurely. He agreed with the state’s attorneys that the Election Code under which it was brought provides only for challenges after voting has taken place.

New Orleans attorney John Rawls, representing the Forum and three individuals challenging the constitutionality of the proposition, said he will appeal immediately and expects a hearing next Monday before the 1st Circuit, State Court of Appeal in Baton Rouge.


Gay couples' covenants with each other and God exist, regardless of church attitude
August 17, 2004
Cape Town
By Pieter Oberholzer

Inclusive and Affirming Ministries (IAM) is an organisation that has been working for the past 10 years with all the major churches in the Western Cape, striving for a more open and inclusive attitude towards lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people. Ultimately we would consider a church fully inclusive if it respects, and is willing to bless, the loving covenant relationship of a lesbian or gay couple.

Gay rights groups threaten Australian government over marriage ban
Ben Townley, UK

The Australian government could face a challenge in the country's courts, after gay rights groups claimed the new ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.

According to the AAP, the Equal Rights Network, a coalition of LGBT groups, has begun working with lawyers on whether they could challenge the law in the High Court.

The law was passed last week, after the country's Labour party sided with the coalition government on the bill, which also bans recognition of same-sex marriages conducted abroad.

The country's Prime Minister John Howard had originally drawn up the proposals after the ongoing row in the US over gay marriage.


Gay rights divides the government . .
The issue of equal rights for same-sex couples in Austria is dividing both the ÖVP and the coalition.

The debate began when the Styria ÖVP's chairman, Christoph Drexler, called for equal rights for same-sex couples. That put him at odds with federal party officials in Vienna.

The general-secretary of the ÖVP, Reinhold Lopatka, said that the issue of granting gay couples the same legal rights as straight couples is not currently on the party's agenda.

Lopatka says Drexler could raise the issue at the Styrian ÖVP's annual party congress this autumn after which the issue could be brought before the federal party by Styria governor Waltraud Klasnic. The governor backed Drexler up announcing to make sure of discussing the matter in the federal ÖVP.

Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel (ÖVP) said he had no comment on the issue, while Finance Minister Karl-Heinz Grasser said he supported Drexler's proposal. A straight no to Drexler's proposal came from the FPÖ. Judicial spokesman, Dieter Böhmdorf- er, said equal rights for same- sex couples would discrimi- nate against families.


Indian press accused of targeting gays after murder
Christopher Curtis, Network

India's LGBT community is feeling targeted by the press after two allegedly gay men were found murdered over the weekend.

Police found the bodies of Pushkin Chandra, 38, a project development officer with US Agency for International Development (USAID), and his friend known as Vishal in Chandra's New Delhi home, a place described by Indian newspapers as "posh".

While police suspect the two men were killed by robbers, the press has highlighted the men's supposed sexuality, including accounts of homosexual pornography found at Chandra's residence and his status as an out gay man.

"Look at what the newspaper headlines are saying: 'Double murder outs Delhi's gay culture,'" a designer told the Newindpress.


UN Concerned About Gay Arrests In Nepal
(New York City) The Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) on Monday voiced concern about the arrests and reported mistreatment of nearly 39 gay men in Nepal.

The men are all members of the Blue Diamond Society.  They were swept up in a series of raids on August 9. A senior police spokesperson said the men were indulging in illegal activities.

“We respect homosexuals as citizens," said Devilal Tamang. "However, we arrested them as they were indulging in acts prevented by the law,” he said.

Sapana Pradhan Malla, a spokesperson for Blue Diamond, said the arrests meant nothing but a way to harass minority communities.

The organization is the only LGBT rights group in the tiny country sandwiched between China and India in the Himalayas.  Last month, police forcefully dispersed a crowd of gays who had marched on the Parliament building to deliver a petition for civil rights to the Prime Minister.



A TRANSSEXUAL vowed to take out a private prosecution against a man cleared yesterday of ramming her with his car.

A jury found John Stewart, 52, not guilty of assaulting Lisa-Anne Docherty.

The 34-year-old, formerly known as William Wotherspoon before a sex change, slammed the jury's decision.

Stewart, of Holytown, Lanarkshire, had been accused of knocking her over with his car and attacking her with a pickaxe last March.


Openly gay man appointed judge in busy Detroit court

DETROIT (AP) -- The newest member of the 36th District Court bench is believed to be the first openly gay person appointed to a judgeship in Michigan.

Gov. Jennifer Granholm named Rudy Serra, 49, to the position on June 25. The Detroit resident was sworn in Aug. 9 as one of 31 judges on the district court, one of the busiest in Michigan.

Several gay rights organizations' Web sites have identified Serra as the state's first openly gay judge. But, Serra told the Detroit Free Press last week: "I think it matters only because it breaks another barrier.

"There had to be a first woman judge. There had to be a first African-American judge. Those psychological barriers are now broken. Now, if a gay or lesbian individual comes along in the future that's qualified, it sets a precedent and demonstrates that that person can serve and do a good job. That's the significance."


Legal bid to place two children in lesbian home
By Chris Millar, Evening Standard

Social workers have launched a fight to take two toddlers from their foster parents so they can be rehoused with a lesbian couple.

A court must now decide whether to remove the children, a girl of two and boy of three, from the care of the heterosexual couple with whom they have been living for more than a year.

Social workers at Labour-led Greenwich council believe the boy and his stepsister must be cared for by a lesbian couple because their mother was in a same-sex relationship.

The male social worker behind the action has been seeking lesbian couples prepared to care for the children.


Ottawa won't oppose gay unions
No more court battles: Minister Announcement `significant shift'

WINNIPEG—The last federal barrier to same-sex marriage and divorce collapsed in dramatic fashion yesterday, with Justice Minister Irwin Cotler offering a blanket assurance that Ottawa will no longer stonewall or resist applications.

"We will not be opposing any of these," he told the annual conference of the Canadian Bar Association. "We will allow these proceedings as they arise."

During a question-and-answer session, Cotler was asked point-blank by Toronto lawyer Doug Elliott if the federal government plans to force gays and lesbians to endure court battles as they continue their fight for equality in provinces across the country. 

The government opposed same-sex marriage in constitutional challenges to the law brought by gays and lesbians in Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia. When courts in those provinces ruled that denying same-sex couples the right to marry was unconstitutional, Ottawa reversed its position in materials filed for an upcoming hearing before the Supreme Court of Canada.


Military policy forces gay partners to quietly struggle on homefront
Chicago Tribune

CHICAGO - (KRT) - Katy and her partner were still teary-eyed from the exchange of a promise to spend the rest of their lives together - made just hours before one of them was to ship off to Iraq for more than a year.

But when the two women said farewell at the base, all they could share was a platonic hug.

Even as Americans debate whether it's right to legalize same-sex marriage, caution remains a fact of life for servicemen and women communicating with a gay or lesbian partner back home.

"We still sign our e-mails with `I love you,'" even though the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy makes it risky, said Katy, 24. Like others interviewed for this story, she spoke on the condition that her full name be withheld, for fear it could be traced to her partner. If her partner were "outed," she could lose her job and the free college tuition that enticed her to enlist in the first place.

Monday, August 16, 2004

California Passes Gay Labor Law
by Newscenter Staff

(Sacramento, California)  The California Senate Monday passed the Omnibus Labor and Employment Non-Discrimination Act. The law standardizes over 30 labor and employment non-discrimination provisions to make them consistent with the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA). The bill now moves to the Governor's desk.

 “This legislation ensures that California workers and employers have one standard—the Fair Employment and Housing Act—by which to judge discrimination and that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender are included in that standard,” said Geoffrey Kors, Executive Director of Equality California.


Group forms to oust judge for signing divorce

DES MOINES (AP) -- A group of northwest Iowans has formed a political action committee to try to unseat a state judge who granted a divorce to a lesbian couple joined in a Vermont civil union.

The Judicial Accountability Group, which filed organizational papers last week, will raise money for an effort to oust District Judge Jeffrey Neary from the bench this fall.

Neary, 46, of Merrill, was appointed by Gov. Tom Vilsack in October 2002 to complete the term of Richard J. Vipond of Denison on his retirement. Neary faces his first retention vote for a six-year term. The six-county area he serves, which includes Plymouth and Woodbury Counties, is mostly rural and heavily Republican.

Only four Iowa judges have been knocked off the bench since the retention system was adopted more than 40 years ago to let voters decide if a judge should stay on the job. A majority vote is all that's needed for retention.

Judge Won't Block La. Gay Marriage Vote

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A judge on Monday refused to block a Sept. 18 statewide vote on a proposed constitutional ban on same-sex marriages.

Amendment opponents said they would appeal. Time is critical because the secretary of state is facing a deadline this week to get ballots to the printer.

Louisiana already has a law stating that marriage can be only between a man and woman, but supporters of the amendment want to protect that law in the Constitution.

A group called Forum for Equality sued, arguing the ban would violate the Louisiana Constitution's guarantee of individuals' rights to enter into contracts and own property together.

some shameless self promotion


Guest Editor: LYN HEJINIAN  
Table of Contents

Kim Addonizio, Will Alexander, Bruce Andrews, Rae Armantrout, Craig Arnold, John Ashbery, Mary Jo Bang, Alan Bernheimer, Charles Bernstein, Anselm Berrigan, Mark Bibbins, Oni Buchanan, Michael Burkard, Anne Carson, T.J. Clark, Billy Collins, Jack Collom, Michael Costello, Michael Davidson, Olena Kalytiak Davis, Jean Day, Linh Dinh, Rita Dove, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, kari edwards, Kenward Elmslie, Aaron Fogel, Ariel Greenberg, Ted Greenwald, Barbara Guest, Carla Harryman, Jane Hirshfield, John Hollander, Fanny Howe, Kenneth Irby, Major Jackson, Marc Jaffee, Kenneth Koch, John Koethe, Yusef Komunyakaa, Sean Manzano Labrador, Ann Lauterbach, Nathaniel Mackey, Harry Mathews, Steve McCaffery, K. Silem Mohammad, Erín Moure, Paul Muldoon, Eileen Myles, Alice Notley, Jeni Olin, Danielle Pafunda, Heidi Peppermint, Bob Perelman, Carl Phillips, Robert Pinsky, Carl Rakosi, Ed Roberson, Kit Robinson, Carly Sachs, Jennifer Scappettone, Frederick Seidel, David Shapiro, Ron Silliman, Bruce Smith, Brian Kim Stefans, Gerald Stern, Virgil Suarez, Arthur Sze, James Tate, Edwin Torres, Rodrigo Toscano, Paul Violi, David Wagoner, and Charles Wright.

Rights for lesbians, transgenders, transsexuals
Lesbian, gay, bi and trans pride series part 12
By Leslie Feinberg

According to historian Dan Healey, "Unlike their male counterparts, Russian women who had erotic relations with members of their own sex had less access to the public sphere and so were less able to construct for themselves a coherent subculture with the attributes of the male homosexual world. This is not to suggest that no female homosexual subculture existed in revolutionary Russia."

Healey has made a great contribution towards digging up some of the records of the lives of lesbians, masculine females and transsexual men in revolutionary Russia during the 1920s. Much of this research can be found in his book "Sexual Desire in Revolutionary Russia." (Univer sity of Chicago Press, 2001)

He offers this caveat: "Adequate sources about this love between lower-class women have yet to emerge, and its character must be judged through the distortions of a single ubiquitous occupation, prostitution."


Colleges offer gender-blind housing option for students
By Noreen Gillespie, Associated Press

HARTFORD — The idea that college students should have to live with roommates of the same gender is ridiculous to Paige Kruza.

For starters, she says gender is not as simple as male and female.

"It started in the days that same-sex, all-male colleges existed," Kruza said.

Kruza, an openly transgendered student at Wesleyan University, shuns the idea of a world that carves people into categories of "male" and "female." The sophomore women's studies major prefers gender-blind pronouns — "ze" instead of he and she, "zir" instead him and her.


Why Do We Transition?
by Sierra Burke

     Why do we do this? There are people that say we do this because it is fun or we like to play dress-up. I pooh-pooh their ignorance.

     I know girls who are fighting to keep relationships years in the making, debating whether to go back to a life sure to lead to death simply to stay with their partners. I know of girls that have given up everything they have to make their transition a success.

     I know of girls that have said goodbye to all they know, all friends and family, for a chance at freedom, safety, life. I have heard of girls selling their very bodies because they have nothing left to get by with. I know of many who cry themselves to sleep every night because they struggle every day with the prejudice, injustice, and cruelty that forces them to live two lives, one real, one false, to live a craziness that wears at the soul, beating down the essence of life that keeps them going each day.


German soldiers allowed to have sex with each other

Germany has introduced a new guideline allowing sex between members of its armed forces.

While sex during work hours will continue to be considered a "disruption of service operations", the new ruling is more liberal on what soldiers do during their free time.

Provided it involves two consenting adults, the new regulation permits "both heterosexual and homosexual relationships and activities", writes Bild daily.

Differences in rank are also considered no obstacle.


Frenchman, bound and beaten, found dead in Romania

BUCHAREST, Aug 16 (AFP) - A Frenchman, bound and half-naked, was found dead in his car in a Romanian corn field, police said on Monday.

The man, about 50, had suffered serious head injuries and was wearing a wig when discovered a few kilometres (miles) from Arad in western Romania. Police speculated that the man, from the French town of Saint Quentin, had engaged in homosexual relations before being killed.

He had entered Romania Sunday and was destined for Brasov in central Romania to meet some Romanian friends.

Also found near the scene of the crime was a dead dog hanging from a fence, presumably belonging to the victim - while the contents of the man's luggage were scattered around the car.


Million Worker March to say:
'We need jobs--not war'
By Minnie Bruce Pratt

Organizers for the Million Worker March, to be held in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 17, are calling for an end to the war in Iraq--and an end to the war on working people in the United States.

Fliers for the MWM, now being widely distributed, bear the headline: "We Need Jobs--Not War!"

International Longshore & Warehouse Union Local 10 in San Francisco initiated the march. The members of Local 10, the home union of the 1934 general strike, have in recent years refused to unload ships to protest apartheid, police brutality and U.S. war drives.

There is a tremendous groundswell of support for the MWM, including a recent endorsement by Roger Toussaint, president of powerful Local 10 of the Transit Workers Union in New York City.


Panamanian starts gay rights movement
By Deb Price / The Detroit News

PANAMA — Just as the visionaries at the start of the last century speeded up commercial trade by connecting the Pacific and Atlantic oceans via the Panama Canal, Ricardo Beteta is trying to engineer a shortcut to help fellow gay Panamanians reach full equality.

Although in law and society, gay Panamanians are all but invisible, Beteta is gathering petition signatures to pressure the incoming new legislature to give gay couples marriage-like rights.

The petition is a giant step forward given that, in many ways, life for the average gay Panamanian resembles pre-Stonewall America — before the 1969 New York City riots that marked the first gay resistance to police brutality and that are now celebrated worldwide as the symbolic kickoff of the modern gay rights movement.

Many gay Panamanians, filled with shame and fear, have grown comfortable living a double life and are uneasy with Beteta’s American-style activism. But others, inspired by his vision of equality, are swallowing their fears and signing the petition.