poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Fitting into their own skin
By Erik Stetson

Judi Howden went into her marriage knowing full well that one day her husband might become her wife.

The couple stayed together - even as Howden's husband, Michael, underwent a sex-change operation that transformed him into Mikayla.

That surgery also landed them in a murky area where gender and law collide.

Their marriage - once between a man and a woman - is now between a woman and a woman, despite a ban on such unions in 40 states of the US, including New Hampshire.

Monday, March 14, 2005

(folkz the tide is turning)

California judge backs gay unions
A judge in California has ruled that the state's ban on gay marriage is unconstitutional.

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Richard Kramer said the state could no longer justify limiting marriage to a man and a woman.

Last year, the Supreme Court annulled 4,000 gay marriages, which the city had permitted in defiance of state law.

Correspondents say the question of the legality of same-sex marriages continues to divide opinion in the US.

In its 2004 ruling, the Supreme Court sidestepped the issue of whether the state law defining marriage as between a man and a woman violated the California's liberal constitution

Bush to Permit Trading of Credits to Limit Mercury
New York Times

WASHINGTON, March 13 - The Bush administration this week will propose the first federal controls on mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants. The new rule will abandon the Environmental Protection Agency's original tilt toward a remedy favored by most environmental groups in favor of a system of tradable pollution allowances that is more congenial to industry.

Himalayan glaciers 'melting fast'
Melting glaciers in the Himalayas could lead to water shortages for hundreds of millions of people, the conservation group WWF has warned.

In a report, the WWF says India, China and Nepal could experience floods followed by droughts in coming decades.

The Himalayas contain the largest store of water outside the polar ice caps, and feed seven great Asian rivers.

The group says immediate action against climate change could slow the rate of melting, which is increasing annually.

"The rapid melting of Himalayan glaciers will first increase the volume of water in rivers, causing widespread flooding," said Jennifer Morgan, director of the WWF's Global Climate Change Programme.

"But in a few decades this situation will change and the water level in rivers will decline, meaning massive eco and environmental problems for people in western China, Nepal and northern India."