Friday, August 26, 2005
Is Federal Divorce Amendment Next?
by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff
(Evansville, Indiana) An Indiana Congressman says that divorce is as dangerous to society as same-sex marriage.
Fiji Court Overturns Sodomy Law - Gays Set Free
by Peter Hacker 365Gay.com Asia Bureau Chief
(Suva) Fiji's High Court overturned the convictions of two gay men on Friday, ruling that the South Pacific island's sodomy law was unconstitutional.
NY Daily News tabloid gives gay-bashers a map
By Leslie Feinberg
Why did the New York Daily News run a full-page article on Aug. 16 about a New York City subway platform in an oppressed community that allegedly draws gay and bisexual men late at night?
Major Gay Rights Groups Announce Opposition To Roberts
by Doreen Brandt 365Gay.com Washington Bureau
(Washington) Four of the nation's largest LGBT civil rights groups Thursday officially announced their opposition to the nomination of Judge John Roberts for the US Supreme Court.
The Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the National Center for Lesbian Rights and Parents & Friends of Lesbians and Gays issued a joint statement calling on the Senate to reject President Bush's candidate for the court.
Llibrary sues over controversial Patriot Act
By Chris Sanders
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A controversial Patriot Act clause allowing the U.S. government to demand information about library patrons' borrowing habits is being challenged in federal court for the first time by a library.
The lawsuit was filed against U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and FBI Director Robert Mueller in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut by an unnamed library and the American Civil Liberties Union.
Turning our backs on women's suffrage
Today is Women's Suffrage Day. 85 years ago, women in the United States gained the right to vote.
Trees don't suck up carbon dioxide as hoped
Forests do not get a growth spurt from greenhouse gas.
Trees don't seem to grow any faster when given an exrtra dose of carbon dioxide, Swiss scientists have found. Their study could shatter the widespread belief that rising concentrations of carbon dioxide may be kept partly in check by blossoming plant growth.
Siege Points to Growing Insurgency
Similar situation in Iraq, too
It's purty hot down there in Crawford, but it's not the heat that makes George W. Bush feint. Even during his quick dip in the press pool the other day in Idaho, he lied about his nemesis Cindy Sheehan (left). No, his dicombobulation is probably the result of a growing insurgency coalescing around Sheehan this summer that provides a sharp contrast to last summer's overly polite protest of the Republican National Convention.
Iraq war approaching the tipping point
By Mounzer Sleiman
A Vietnam veteran offers an interesting and telling incident summing up his personal feelings about the war
Don't Stop Giving Change to Beggars
by Reggie Rivers
I give money to panhandlers. It's not part of my daily routine, but every now and then, a homeless person will be in my line of sight when I'm feeling generous, and I'll hand him or her a couple of bucks.
I don't have any expectations about how the recipient will spend the money. Maybe he'll buy food. Maybe he's saving for a bus trip to another city. Maybe he'll use the money to pay for lodging. Or maybe he'll just buy booze. It doesn't matter to me. I give him money because I can see he needs it.
The death of Al Mutanabbi Street
Iraqi culture was reborn when Saddam fell, only to die again. A report from Baghdad's fear-haunted literary cafes.
By Phillip Robertson
BAGHDAD, Iraq -- Near the old Jewish quarter of Baghdad, at Al Rasheed Street, there is a meandering alley named after the Iraqi poet Al Mutanabbi. The poet's street branches away from Al Rasheed and heads down through a tissue of dilapidated buildings with thin columns that hold up warped balconies. Bookstores of every description occupy the street-level spaces, selling technical manuals, ornate copies of the Quran and a nice selection of pirated software. Al Mutanabbi then runs downhill toward the mud-brown bend of the Tigris until veering west at a covered market and the high walls of an old mosque school. Right at the bend in the road is Baghdad's legendary literary cafe, the Shabandar, where for decades writers and intellectuals have come to drink tea and smoke tobacco from water pipes. The place is smoke-scarred and dirty. When there is electricity, which is almost never, the fans do not cool the air at all. Literary men in their shirt-sleeves sit and smoke.
Gas Station Workers Face Angry Customers
By SHEILA FLYNN, Associated Press Writer
DALLAS - It's a scene gas station workers say is becoming increasingly common and frightening: Customers angry over gas prices nearing $3 a gallon storm in and decide to take it out on the employees.
Controversy Over Plans for Changes in U.S. Parks
By Julie Cart
Times Staff Writer
A series of proposed revisions of National Park policy has created a furor among present and former park officials who believe the changes would weaken protections of natural resources and wildlife while allowing an increase in commercial activity, snowmobiles and off-road vehicles.
Two Academies Faulted on Treatment of Women
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
WASHINGTON, (AP) - Hostile attitudes and inappropriate treatment of women persist at the United States Military Academy and the Naval Academy, a committee appointed by the Pentagon said in a report issued Thursday.
Thursday, August 25, 2005
Indian authorities bowed to muslim fundamentalists by cutting access to GayEgypt.com.
Indian authorities bowed to muslim fundamentalists by cutting access to GayEgypt.com on 23 August 2005. The Raza Academy alleged that GayEgypt.com was an outrage against Islam and against the prophet. GayEgypt.com has been very popular in India because of its' 100+ gay Indian message boards.
Criminologist: 'Frenzied' Violence Against Gays Needs Serious Attention
by Jeremy Hainsworth, Canadian Press
(Vancouver, British Columbia) Criminologist Doug Janoff says violence against homosexuals in Canada is more ``frenzied'' and intense than that perpetrated against other victims of violent crime.
Nigerian Court Gives Police 4th Chance To Get Evidence On Gay Men
by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff
(Lagos) For the third time a Nigerian Islamic court has given police more time to collect evidence against two men accused of having gay sex - even though police in each of the previous hearings have admitted they cannot find any proof the men ever had sex.
Ohio drag queen murder trial continues
Presenting the coroner’s autopsy report and the videotaped interrogation of the defendant, the prosecution on Tuesday presented the strongest evidence yet in the samurai sword slaying of a popular local female impersonator in Columbus, Ohio. Admitted killer Michael Jennings, 34, sat with his head down as he and the three-judge panel hearing his case heard for the first time his version of events in the May 17, 2002, murder of 36-year-old Gary McMurtry.
Massachusetts to Consider Same-Sex Unions
BOSTON, Aug. 24 -- State legislators voted Wednesday to hold a constitutional convention next month to debate a proposed amendment that would replace same-sex marriage in Massachusetts with Vermont-style civil unions
The Trillion-Dollar War
By LINDA BILMES
THE human cost of the more than 2,000 American military personnel killed and 14,500 wounded so far in Iraq and Afghanistan is all too apparent. But the financial toll is still largely hidden from public view and, like the suffering of those who have lost loved ones, will persist long after the fighting is over.
The cost goes well beyond the more than $250 billion already spent on military operations and reconstruction. Basic running costs of the current conflicts are $6 billion a month - a figure that reflects the Pentagon's unprecedented reliance on expensive private contractors. Other factors keeping costs high include inducements for recruits and for military personnel serving second and third deployments, extra pay for reservists and members of the National Guard, as well as more than $2 billion a year in additional foreign aid to Jordan, Pakistan, Turkey and others to reward their cooperation in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bill for repairing and replacing military hardware is $20 billion a year, according to figures from the Congressional Budget Office.
Court allows suit linking U.S. aid, global warming
SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Two environmental groups and four U.S. cities may sue U.S. federal agencies which finance overseas projects which they say contribute to global warming, a federal judge has ruled.
The two federal agencies -- Overseas Private Investment Corporation and the Export-Import Bank of the United States -- had asked the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California to dismiss the lawsuit.
Nine US states break with Bush on greenhouse gases
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Nine northeastern U.S. states are working on a plan to cap and then reduce the level of greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, the first U.S. deal of its kind and one which would see the region breaking with President George W. Bush who refused to sign the Kyoto Protocol
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Tuesday, August 23, 2005
Prison Rape Survivors Tell Their Stories
SAN FRANCISCO -- As a young, bisexual inmate weighing just 123 pounds, Kendell Spruce made a perfect target for sexual predators.
Nine months after landing in an Arkansas prison for violating parole for check forgery, he said he had been raped by 27 fellow prisoners, including a cellmate who infected him with HIV.
Spruce, now 42, told his story to a congressional commission studying prison rape and sexual abuse. Other witnesses included juveniles attacked in adult prisons and transgender men and women.
India: Everything Gets Worse With Coca-Cola
by D. Rajeev
PLACHIMADA, India - In the end it was the 'generosity' of Coca-Cola in distributing cadmium-laden waste sludge as 'free fertilizer' to the tribal aborigines who live near the beverage giant's bottling plant in this remote Kerala village that proved to be its undoing.
On Friday, the Kerala State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) ordered the plant shut down to the jubilation of tribal leaders and green activists who had focused more on the 'water mining' activities of the plant rather than its production of toxic cadmium sludge.
The war of words
PRESIDENT BUSH'S SUNNY DECLARATION on Monday that Baghdad's leaders were "defying the terrorists and pessimists by completing work on a democratic constitution" was unfortunate not only for its timing but for its willfulness. Just hours after Bush's speech, Iraqi leaders announced (again) that they were unable to agree on a draft constitution. Just as disturbing, however, is the continuing disconnect between the president's perspective and Iraq's reality.
In his speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Bush again conflated Al Qaeda and Iraq, neglecting to note that Al Qaeda put down roots in Iraq only after the invasion or that Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9/11 or Osama bin Laden. His description of Iraq's constitutional negotiations — "a difficult process that involves debate and compromise" — understates the depth of animosity in Iraq. On Monday, representatives submitted an incomplete draft to the National Assembly because of continued disagreement on basic issues such as the strength of a central government and the role of Islam.
Monday, August 22, 2005
Thai film's transsexual glove story
By Neil Smith
BBC News entertainment reporter
Beautiful Boxer, a film based on famed transsexual kickboxer Nong Toom, has been a huge success in its native Thailand and is now set to be released in the UK.
State Supreme Court upholds rights, responsibilities of same-sex parents
Bob Egelko, Chronicle Staff Writer
San Francisco (SF Chronicle) -- Lesbian and gay couples who plan for a family and raise a child together can be considered legal parents after a breakup, with all the rights and responsibilities of heterosexual parents, the California Supreme Court ruled today
Visitors rush to glimpse vanishing glaciers
Attention turns to Alaska where climate change is transforming the landscape
Dan Glaister in Los Angeles
Monday August 22, 2005
The four distinguished visitors looked on in awe at the sight before them. Exit Glacier in Alaska's Kenai Fjords national park is one of continental America's most imposing monuments, and last week it was at its most impressive - a hulk of ice and snow imperceptibly making its way toward the sea.
But lately that movement has quickened, a fact that will not have been lost on visitors. One of the most popular tourist attractions in Alaska, Exit Glacier has receded 300 metres (1,000ft) in the past 10 years. The movement means that the viewing platform from which the group of dignitaries surveyed the glacier would have been under several feet of ice just a few years ago. Today it is on dry land.
Santorum’s People Toss Young Women out of Barnes & Noble, Trooper Threatens Them with Prison
On the evening of August 10, Hannah Shaffer of Glen Mills, Pennsylvania, decided to go to the nearby Barnes & Noble outside of Wilmington. She wanted to see Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, who was promoting his book, “It Takes a Family.”
The event was billed as a “book signing and discussion,” Shaffer says.
But discussion was the last thing that the Senator’s people wanted.
Climate change: imagine a charging rhino
In what was old Rhodesia, a steam train used to go daily between Salisbury and Bulawayo along a single track through rhino territory. Eventually, a cranky alpha-rhino took umbrage. As the train chugged south at 70mph, the rhino mounted the track and charged north. The smash derailed the train and killed the rhino.
So with global climate change. With greenhouse gas emissions still accelerating, we are now going down the tracks towards the oncoming rhino. The threatened impact challenges our economy and even our survival.
Asylum judge slammed for homophobia
Gay charity Stonewall has written to the Home Secretary Charles Clarke urging him to reassess a gay Iranian refugee’s asylum application, as awareness of the treatment of lesbian and gay people in Iran continues to rise.
Stonewall says the Home Office should intervene in the unnamed man’s case, and warned that the judge who ruled he should be returned could be regarded as homophobic.