Gay Issues

Bush Flipflop: Hoping to Dupe Undecided Dems (all three of them), Bush Now he Says he's Pro-Gay!
Gay Issues

Political Gateway:"George W. Bush stressed Tuesday that he supports states' rights to allow civil unions for same-sex couples, contrary to his Republican Party's official stance, although he still opposes gay marriage. "I don't think we should deny people rights to a civil union, a legal arrangement, if that's what the state chooses to do," Bush said in an interview with ABC television aired Tuesday." LOL! This is coming from the man who wanted to change to constitution to send a message to gays! He apparently thinks liberals are as stupid as rightwingers - willing to believe any fairytale told them - like the ones about how he's a "moderate," a "uniter," "for patients' rights," and "pro-Kyoto protocol," just to name a few last minute campaign promises from 2000!

Study: Gays in the Military Have Proud Service Record in the Middle East
Gay Issues

University of CA Santa Barbara: "A new study released today is the first assessment of the impact of the gay ban on U.S. military effectiveness in recent Middle East wars. The study, by Dr. Nathaniel Frank, is titled 'Gays and Lesbians at War: Military Service in Iraq and Afghanistan Under 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.' 'The study concludes that gays and lesbians serve openly in the Middle East without undermining unit cohesion or the missions in Iraq and Afghanistan...Among the dozens of stories included in the study is that of Brian Hughes, a gay Army Ranger who was part of the task force that rescued Iraqi War POW Jessica Lynch." Yet a systematic purge of gays from the military has been underway since Bush took office - including highly trained and desperately needed specialists.

Gay Bloggers Expose Hypocrisy of Gay Anti-Marriage Republicans
Gay Issues

John Aravosis blogs, "The Sunday New York Times did a story on the 'hypocrisy' campaign (I'm trying not to call it an 'outing' campaign as Michael in NY gets ticked at me since, in reality, I don't think anyone's been outed who wasn't already 'out'). The article is interesting in that is show a larger mood change in Washington, one in which the gay community (and hopefully our straight allies) is starting to stand up to members of our own community who have sold their souls, and our own, to the devil. [Aravosis quotes the hypocritical aide, who told the Times:] 'If there is a spectrum of things that make up who I am, the things that draw me to work for Republicans are more important than anything related to my sexual orientation.' Like I've been saying all along, these people turn their back on a community so abhorrent to them that they don't even want to be associated with it, yet they expect our protection while they try to destroy us."

Bush Military Boots out 770 Gays - Putting Even MORE Strain on Overstretched Troops
Gay Issues

Capitol Hill Blue: "Even with concerns growing about military troop strength, 770 people were discharged for homosexuality last year under the military's 'don't ask, don't tell' policy, a new study shows." The highest number of discharges made since the enactment of the 1994 'Don't ask, don't tell' policy was Bush's first year in office, 2001 (1,227 discharges). Hundreds of those discharged held high-level job specialties that required years of training and expertise, including 90 nuclear power engineers, 150 rocket and missile specialists and 49 nuclear, chemical, and biological warfare specialists. Eighty-eight linguists were discharged, including at least seven Arab language specialists."

Website Attacks the Hypocrisy of Cheney's Lesbian Daughter
Gay Issues

Mary Cheney must be confused, is all we can say. She is openly lesbian, yet in 2000, 2002, and in the present, critical election, she has campaigned for what is perhaps the most anti-gay bunch of Republicans to ever sit on Capitol Hill, both in the White House and in Congress. So Mary, is it self-hatred, or just greed (we can imagine Daddy pays quite well). Now gay rights activist John has launched a Web-based campaign called www.DearMary.com to try to appeal to Mary's honest side. The site calls for Mary to at least oppose Daddy and Dubya's proposed anti-gay marriage amendment to the Constitution.

Announcing 'I Do in 30 Seconds'
Gay Issues

"Building off the success of MoveOn's Bush in 30 Seconds contest, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) and the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) have teamed up to sponsor a new national competition, I Do in 30 Seconds. Enterprising visual artists from around the country will compete 'to create the best 30-second television commercial in support of same-sex couples gaining equal access to the rights, protections and responsibilities of marriage.' The finalists will be determined by a panel of celebrity judges, featuring comedian Margaret Cho, producer Bruce Cohen (American Beauty, Big Fish), and actor, producer & activist Judith Light of 'Who's the Boss?' fame, among others. The campaign hopes to raise $300,000 with which to run the winning ad."

Equality Campaign Website Attacked by Anti-Gay Hackers
Gay Issues

Robin Tyler of The Equality Campaign reports: "One of the leading organizations working to prevent an anti-gay amendment to the Constitution, DontAmend.com, was the victim of a computer hacking attack on Thursday, forcing the organization to temporarily shut down its huge email list and issue an apology to its subscribers. You may go to the website http://www.dontamend.com and sign up ... for the e-mail list. We have secured the list, and it will not be activated again until we have put it on a new server. May is a crucial month for our movement. May 17 is the day that Massachusetts begins to issue licenses to same-gender couples. That weekend, we are working to participate in, organize, or help with rallies, demonstrations, celebrations, and protests across the country. We are listing them on our website, and will update the lists daily. Our community and allies need to know ... this small grassroots organization needs help in fighting back."

Senate Republicans to Promote Marriage
Gay Issues

AP: "Senate Republicans this week will launch a series of hearings to promote the value of traditional marriage, a move some Democrats are calling an election year ploy that is none of Congress' business. According to a GOP memo obtained by The Associated Press, the hearings will represent a 'full-court push to educate the public on the importance of marriage.' Four committees are expected to hold hearings over the next two weeks, ...Bruce Cain, professor of political science at the University of California-Berkeley, called the motives 'transparent.' 'The Republican Party believes that since the majority of Americans favor heterosexual marriage, not gay marriage, and since it's an issue the Democratic Party has a somewhat more complicated position on, anything they can do to keep the issue on the front-burner of politics is a plus,' said Cain."

Rightwingers Seek Forcible Removal of Judges Upholding Gay Rights
Gay Issues

AP: "A group that opposes gay marriage has enlisted the help of a [Mass.] legislator in a long-shot attempt to remove the four justices of the state's high court who ruled that banning gay marriage is unconstitutional. Democratic state Rep. Emile J. Goguen [even Mass. has Trojan Horse rightwingers hiding in Dem's clothing!] told The Boston Globe he planned to file legislation to oust the justices on Tuesday, even though he is the measure's only sponsor. He sees the bill as a way to pressure members of the Supreme Judicial Court to reconsider their 4-3 decision. Goguen, who voted against a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage but allow civil unions, said he agreed to sponsor the measure after he was approached by members of the Article 8 Alliance, a group that opposes same-sex marriage."

Gay Republicans Deserting Bush
Gay Issues

ABC: "Gay Republicans are stung by Bush's support for a ban on same-sex marriages and are divided over where to turn in November, with many weighing party loyalty against outrage. 'I'm going to have a hard time going with Bush. In my good conscience, I don't know how I can support him,' said Shawn Gardner, one of several hundred party members attending this weekend's annual convention of the Log Cabin Republicans, a gay GOP organization that backed Bush in 2000.The Log Cabin Republicans have aired 30-second TV ads in several states featuring Vice President Dick Cheney and a remark he made in a debate four years ago: 'People should be free to enter into any kind of relationship they want to enter into. 'Concern about the proposed amendment has cut into organizational and financial support for Bush, Log Cabin leaders said."

Majority of Americans FAVOR Gay Civil Unions While Opposing Bush Constitutional Amendment Scheme
Gay Issues

While Scott McClellan and Karl Rove continue to rant that public support for gay marriage or civil unions is getting less by the day, a conservative poll (Washington Post/ABC) shows that this is a bald-faced lie. "Public support appears to be growing for legalizing civil unions for same-sex couples, as well as for allowing states to make their own laws regulating homosexual marriage, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll. About half of those polled -- 51 percent -- favor allowing gay and lesbian couples to form civil unions with the same basic legal rights of married couples, up six percentage points in less than a month. A slightly larger majority also rejected amending the US Constitution to ban same-sex marriages in favor of allowing states to make their own laws, an eight-point increase in recent weeks."

Bush Gay Marriage Hype a Scam to Trick Deserting Christian Fundies into Returning to the GOP Fold
Gay Issues

Bush wants the public to believe that he has the unswerving support of the Christian right, who are behind him all the way. But, in fact, by May, 2003, the Christian right was deserting the GOP ship in droves. Why? Bush's failure to live up to his campaign promises on family and marriage. So, once Bush's poll numbers tanked. Now he has pulled his gay marriage ploy, arrogantly assuming this meaningless scam (he knows a constitutional amendment will never get past Congress) will bring the deserters all running dutifully back to heel. We bet the very reason this group deserted Bush - being deceived - will be what keeps them from buying this latest sales pitch.

Bush Wearing Gay Marriage Issue Like a Desperate Wife Dressed in Saran Wrap
Gay Issues

Cindy Rodriquez writes: "Like the wife who greets her husband at the door dressed only in Saran Wrap, thinking it will keep him from leaving their stale marriage, [making a huge issue of gay marriage] is Bush's way of using a controversial issue to revive support from an American electorate that is feeling unsatisfied. It's an old tactic. When the White House has failed you - in this case failed to revive the economy, which has lost nearly 3 million American jobs - politicians try to get us caught up in an exhausting, emotional debate about something that has nothing to do with core bread-and-butter issues. For Republicans, it's usually some topic surrounding morality." Yep, point out someone else's moral values and maybe no one will notice that you yourself don't have any!

Confused Morality: Why Does Gay Marriage Offend Some More than War and Death?
Gay Issues

Andrew C. Thomas writes in The Tech': "Far too many people think that the most important purpose of marriage is to produce children. Take this definition at face value and you discriminate against the infertile, and discount adoption. Others see marriage as a financial union, an angle that shouldn't even factor into a discussion of morality. So we almost naturally come to the prickly issue of sexuality, and suddenly the pragmatic reasons for opposing gay marriage disappear. This is why people are offended at seeing pictures of gay couples kissing in the newspaper [or the sight of Janet J's breast], but for some reason are not nearly as offended by pictures of war and death. If any change is to come, it must be an internal one. Someone in the church must stand up against dogma and help to reinforce a more idealistic, inclusive notion of morality, not one tainted by outdated pragmatic concerns."

C(orporate)B.S. Ties Itself in Knots to Make Bush Gay Marriage Flap a 'Huge' Issue
Gay Issues

The anti-gay sentiment that Bush and his cohorts are trying to whip up is a smoke-and-mirrors, fudged poll production, like every other big Bush PR production. For example, how do your reconcile the fact that TV programs featuring gays - Will and Grace, Queer Eye, etc. are growing in popularity with a "new CBS poll" that says anti-gay marriage sentiment is growing? Across the nation, the recurring comment of REAL PEOPLE is that this just isn't the huge issue Bush wants it to be, while lack of jobs and soldiers dying ARE. This CBS (Corporate B. S.) article is a PRIME example of media propaganda - except that it is so convoluted in its attempt to whip up a case that it turns in corkscrews toward the end.

Here's the 'Dream Team' Bush Should Appoint to Promote his Anti-Gay Marriage Amendment
Gay Issues

Daily Brew writes, "Bush should appoint his brother Neil to act as his point man in promoting the Constitutional amendment... Who better to promote the sanctity of marriage than a man who admitted during his divorce trial he contracted herpes while cheating on his wife with prostitutes in Thailand? To stoke the base, Neil could ask Rush Limbaugh to give the issue daily attention on his radio program. Having been married three times, Rush has significantly more experience with the sanctity of marriage than your average American... For some star power with younger voters, Rush could invite Britney Spears on the program. Unlike most of the Hollywood elite, Britney has been outspoken in her support for the President... for the cable television assault, the obvious go-to-guy is Newt Gingrich... Gingrich ended his 19-year marriage shortly after his victory, visiting Jackie in the hospital where she was recovering from surgery for uterine cancer to discuss details of the divorce."

Groups Fail to Block Same-Sex Marriage Licenses
Gay Issues

"A Superior Court judge rejected a motion Friday from a conservative group that asked for an immediate temporary restraining order to stop San Francisco from issuing same-sex marriage licenses. Judge James Warren delayed the hearing until Tuesday, saying the group had given insufficient notice of the request. The Alliance Defense Fund, based in Arizona, said in a statement that the city is acting 'in blatant violation of state law.' A separate group, Campaign for California Families, sued San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom and County Clerk Nancy Alfaro on Friday 'for violating California state law on marriage and the issuing of marriage licenses.' A directive from Newsom ordered the county clerk to begin issuing the marriage licenses Thursday. As word spread, couples flocked to City Hall. Officials issued 95 marriage licenses before closing for the day. Officials told the remaining couples to come back Friday... As of Friday afternoon, 489 couples had gotten married, the AP reported."

Gay Rightwinger Andrew Sullivan on The Empowerment of Marriage
Gay Issues

Where Andrew parts company with the rightwing: "Something is happening out there. Instead of begging for the basic right to marry, gay couples are now demanding it. In San Francisco, they are simply getting married as an act of civil disobedience. And that is happening across the country. This will alter the debate - as will the actual existence of marriages in Massachusetts in May. The debate will become how to tear gay couples apart, how to demean and marginalize them, rather than an abstract debate about theories of marriage... When MA becomes the first free state for gay citizens, the movement will explode... Already consciousness has been changed. Already the very idea of equal marriage rights is in the minds and souls of a new generation. And when the religious right try to strip us of those, and force us back into second-class status, then we will see something else: resistance. We are on the verge of the next phase of this civil rights movement."

Anti-Gay Forces Are Mobilizing on Marriage: Answer Back
Gay Issues

The ACLU writes, "Guess who's being turned into a campaign wedge issue? Same-sex couples and those who support equal rights. Anti-gay extremists such as Concerned Women for America, Focus on the Family, and others are going all-out to push a 'Federal Marriage Amendment' this year. We asked you to take action last year on this issue, and thousands did. With the recent decision in Massachusetts requiring that state to provide equal marriage rights, the issue is front and center, and many analysts predict it will be a central campaign wedge issue. Arch-conservative Richard Viguerie expects to send out 10 million letters on the issue in the coming weeks, according to the New York Times. Take action now to stop the discriminatory Federal Marriage Amendment. Don't let the Constitution become a tool for bigotry -- and speak out against wedge-issue politics that seek to divide us."

Repugs Push to Make Gay Marriage the Number One Campaign Issue!
Gay Issues

The US military stretched so thin it may break. 8.6 Americans have no jobs. Over 40 million have no health insurance. The federal deficit is a trainwreck. Soldiers are dying almost daily in an illegal war.... But what does the GOP want to make the NUMBER ONE campaign issue? Gay marriage. No, we are NOT making this up! As Kerry told reporters after a Portland, ME rally "if Republicans want to turn this into some wedge sort of issue and distort my position, I will fight back very clearly. I support equal rights, the right of people to have civil unions, to have partner rights. I do not support marriage for gays and lesbians." Now here's the GOP distortion of that same statement! "Kerry called for civil unions, which is all but gay marriage without the name," says GOP consultant Whit Ayres. Ayres then predicted that gay marriage would become "the number one social issue in the presidential campaign."

Massive Support For Gays in Military Poll Shows
Gay Issues

"A new poll has found that 79 percent of all Americans believe that gays and lesbians should be allowed to serve openly in the military. The CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll, which was conducted December 5-7, 2003, surveyed 1,004 adults. Survey participants were asked, 'Do you think people who are openly gay or homosexual should - or should not - be allowed to serve in the U.S. military?' In the 18-29 year age range, 91 percent said that gays should be allowed to serve openly. Those aged 30-49, 50-64, and 65 and over were 81, 74, and 68 percent respectively. Seventy-three percent of men, and 85 percent of women, responded affirmatively. The numbers show a significant improvement over earlier polls."

School Refuses to Apologize for Reprimanding Second Grader's 'Gay' Remarks
Gay Issues

"Lafayette Parish's school superintendent Wednesday said there would be no apology over an incident in which a lesbian mother says he son was disciplined for saying he has a gay mom... Easton said the grade two student was disciplined for behavior problems. Sharon Huff says her son was reprimanded and forced to repeatedly write 'I will never use the word 'gay' in school again.'... ACLU's Joe Cook released a behavior report signed by teacher Terry L. Bethea which states, 'Marcus decided to explain to another child in his group that his mom is gay. He told the other child that gay is when a girl likes a girl. This kind of discussion is not appropriate in my room,' Bethea wrote... Cook also showed a 'behavior contract,' sent to the mother which said, 'He explained to another child that you are gay and what being gay means.' The 7 year old was required to fill out a form, in which he wrote, 'I sed bad wurds.' In a space for 'What I should have done,' he wrote, 'Cep my mouf shut.'"

'Uniter' Bush Plans to Divide America over Gay Marriage
Gay Issues

"Republican strategists are planning to make gay marriage an issue in the 2004 political race if the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court rules that same-sex couples can legally wed in the Commonwealth... Under pressure from social conservatives who want Bush to campaign against gay marriage in 2004, GOP officials say they are studying battleground states where same-sex unions could be a wedge issue in national and state races, and they are weighing endorsement of a proposed federal constitutional amendment sanctioning only heterosexual marriage. At the same time, conservative groups are raising money to spend on campaigns next year, assembling volunteers to press candidates to oppose gay marriage, and organizing petition drives and ballot initiatives in favor of the constitutional amendment... Conservative activist Paul Weyrich said that White House officials have assured him the resident will endorse the constitutional ban on gay marriage when a court decision is handed down."

Homophobia Will be the Centerpiece of GOP Campaign in 2004
Gay Issues

"Hoping to energize the GOP's conservative base by targeting the gay and lesbian community, RNC Chairman Ed Gillespie announced earlier in the week that he expected the Republican Party platform to contain a plank calling for a Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. This anti-gay amendment would not only ban recognition of same-sex relationships, but also lead to the repeal of more than 187 state and local laws providing basic rights to gay and lesbian Americans in committed relationships. '[Gillespie] accused homosexual activists of intolerance and bigotry by attempting to force the rest of the population to accept alien moral standards. As a result, 'tolerance is no longer defined as my accepting people for who they are,' the RNC chairman said... Don't expect very many Republicans to step up and tell their Chairman that he's the one who has crossed the line. The Republican Party has proven time and again that it's willing engage in bigotry for perceived political gain."

Even in Death, GLBT Veterans are Denied Respect and Equal Rights
Gay Issues

"Interred [at Congressional Cemetary] is a gay Vietnam veteran named Leonard Matlovich, whose black granite headstone is adorned with two pink triangles and bears the inscription: 'When I was in the military they gave me a medal for killing two men and a discharge for loving one.'... Although gay people have served in the armed forces since the country's founding, little is known about the lives of gay veterans. According to a study by the Urban Institute, 1.3m of the 25.1m living veterans of U.S. wars are gay men or lesbians. Yet one of the least-known effects of 'don't ask, don't tell,' the current military policy under which gays must keep quiet about their sexual orientation or risk losing their jobs, is that the soldiers must remain closeted at their own funerals if they desire full graveside honors. Arlington Nat'l Cemetery's policy, for instance, follows the strict guidelines of the Department of Veterans Affairs, prohibiting any expression of homosexual unions on headstones."

Hurricane Isabel and Gay Rights - Christian Fundamentalist Finds a Connection
Gay Issues

From TomPaine.com's blog: "Christian fundamentalists often link their conservative beliefs to disasters -- both natural and man-made. Usually, it's in the service of the idea that God is vengeful, cooking up hurricanes and meteors to punish humans for our sins. Remember when the Rev. Pat Robertson warned that Orlando, Florida should think twice before holding a gay pride event --- sure to invoke God's wrath -- during hurricane season? And the litany of causes --- from paganism to the ACLU --- that Robertson and his pal Rev. Jerry Falwell blamed for 9/11 would have been funny had they not been so insulting. Last week Tony Perkins, of the Family Research Council, used Hurricane Isabel as a metaphor for the fight against gay marriage. As 'Isabel churned and grew more powerful,' he wrote, 'so too the radical Left's campaign to deconstruct the family.' If opposition to a federal law banning homosexual marriage has the strength of Isabel, we couldn't be happier."

'GOP Will Make Gay People and their Relationships the Willie Hortons of 2004'
Gay Issues

Matt Foreman of the Nat'l Gay and Lesbian Task Force, at the 40th Anniversary of the Civil Rights March on Washington: "The hard-won progress achieved over the last 40 years in civil rights and economic justice is in mortal danger. But, let's be clear: this administration is in power and the majority in congress is in power and the right wing is in ascendancy NOT because most Americans want what they are inflicting on the nation. No survey anywhere shows that. No, this minority is in power because they know how to set aside their differences, they turn out to vote, and they repeatedly and successfully drive wedges into the heart of America and into our beloved community.... And mark my words, they are already geared up to make gay people and our relationships the Willie Hortons of the 2004 election cycle. This time, LGBT people will be their chosen prey to distract the nation from the mess they've created at home and abroad. To all of this evil, let's collectively say, enough!"

In E-Mail, Prominent Republican Asks Colleagues to Make Gay Marriage a 'Huge' Issue
Gay Issues

From TomPaine.com's blog: "After learning that the director of the Human Rights Campaign warned the GOP not to use the gay marriage issue against Democrats, Robert Knight fired off an e-mail to fellow conservatives. Knight, who is director of the Culture & Family Institute, an affiliate of Concerned Women for America, asked colleagues to make gay marriage a 'huge' issue. He wrote: 'The New York Times has been pushing this fiction, too, that it would somehow 'hurt' the GOP if this emerged as a big issue. Sure it would. ... They ALWAYS counsel Republicans to steer to the left, for the GOP's own good, of course.' Besides gay-bashing, we have some ideas about other issues conservatives might want to stay away from (wink, wink)-- the cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the impact of the tax cuts, the missing pages of the report on 9/11 and the list goes on."

Rick Sanitarium Defines Marriage: 'It's Not to Affirm Love'
Gay Issues

Frank Rich writes: "Perhaps the resident has what it takes to restore sanctity to our conjugal landscape, but he can't do it alone, or with just the help of his political allies. Somehow William Bennett's condemnation of extramarital sex to Tim Russert two weeks ago did not gain in moral authority just because he's rubbed shoulders with such sinners while playing the slots in Vegas. And with friends like Rick Santorum, the family-values Republican senator from Pennsylvania, does marriage need any enemies? 'It is not to affirm the love of two people -- that's not what marriage is about,' he argued on Fox, agreeing with John Kerry, Democrat of Massachusetts, who had previously said, 'Marriage is an institution between men and women for the purpose of having children and procreating.' Never mind that Mr. Kerry himself is in a post-procreation second marriage."

Falwell Launches Crusade for Constitutional Amendment Banning Gay Marriage
Gay Issues

365Gay.com writes, "The Rev Jerry Falwell is putting aside everything to devote his time to passage of a constitutional ban on gay marriage. 'I am dedicating my talents, time and energies over the next few years to the passage of an amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which will protect the traditional family from its enemies who wish to legalize same-sex marriage and other diverse 'family' forms,' Falwell said. Calling it 'his line in the sand' Falwell said he is recruiting one million Americans to sign a Federal Marriage Amendment Petition which would be forwarded to all 535 members of Congress and to Bush. Falwell has set up a website to solicit support: http://www.onemanonewoman.com ... Falwell has a long tradition of attacking gays. He was a major factor in the overturn of the Miami gay civil rights law in the late 1970's... Following the September 11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, Falwell pointed the finger at gays and feminists. He later apologized."

BushRove Will Put Homophobia at the Center of 2004 Campaign
Gay Issues

Doug Ireland writes, "Karl Rove's strategy for Bush and the Republicans not only to win a second term for Dubya but to increase their majorities in both houses of Congress calls for energizing the Bush Bible Belt base (it was, after all, the Christian right that motored Bush's 2000 primary victories over John McCain). The 13 states whose anti-sodomy laws were nullified by the Supremes were all states that Bush carried last time. 'NASCAR Dads' have replaced soccer moms as the constituency to be chased this year, and they're considered hostile to gays in general and gay marriage in particular... Howard Dean's national identification with Vermont's civil unions for gays (even though he did nothing to help pass the law authorizing them and signed it in a closet without the press present) is one reason the DLC has been denouncing him as a loser. In this it has been echoing Rove, who has made no secret of his preference for Dean as Bush's November opponent next year."

Last Minute Efforts to Smear Robinson Fail: America Gets Its First Gay Bishop!
Gay Issues

"Leaders of the Episcopalian Church in the United States voted last night to confirm the election of a gay man as a one of their bishops, ending a tumultuous process that was almost derailed at the last moment by allegations that the candidate had inappropriately touched a parishioner," writes the UK Independent. "The decision gives the Christian church its first openly gay bishop in any denomination anywhere." The decision - entering as it does on New Hampshire, traditionally considered relatively conservative - also proves that the rightwing's "Freep attack" tactics (last-minute slanderous emails, etc.) have worn thin: the public has had enough!

Bush Backs Bid to Block Gays From Marrying
Gay Issues

NY Times reports: "Bush said today that while he believed Americans should treat gays in a welcoming and respectful manner, he remained firmly opposed to gay marriages and that administration lawyers were working to ensure that the term 'marriage' would cover only unions between men and women... Patrick Guerriero, the executive director of the Log Cabin Republicans, a group of gay Republican backers, said that Mr. Bush's remarks were 'troubling to us,' adding, 'It seems like it's a political card being played for the radical right on a national stage.' He said the 1996 act should have answered all of the conservatives' concerns. Mr. Guerriero said that Mr. Bush should take note that using such cultural war issues as homosexuality had failed in the past, notably for the re-election bid of the resident's father."

Frist Backs Ban on Gay Marriage; Equates Sexual Privacy with Freedom to Commit Crime -- How Orwellian!
Gay Issues

"The Senate majority leader said Sunday he supported a proposed constitutional amendment to ban homosexual marriage in the United States. Sen. Bill Frist... said the Supreme Court's decision last week on gay sex threatens to make the American home a place where criminality is condoned. The court on Thursday threw out a Texas law that prohibited acts of sodomy between homosexuals in a private home, saying that such a prohibition violates the defendants' privacy rights under the Constitution. 'I have this fear that this zone of privacy that we all want protected in our own homes is gradually -- or I'm concerned about the potential for it gradually being encroached [???] upon, where criminal activity within the home would in some way be condoned [as in 1984's SexCrime?],' Frist told ABC's 'This Week.'" What about condoning the killing of cats within the home? Dr. Frist has admitted that he lied to pet shelters to adopt cats for his medical research. (Enter "frist cat killer" in Google).

Gay Community Hails 'a New Day'
Gay Issues

WashPost reports: "It sounded like victory night on the campaign trail -- the honking car horns, hoots and cheers from an audience too juiced to let the speeches begin and chants of, 'We won! We won!' that kept drowning out the squeaking speakerphone. Only this campaign began decades ago. Several hundred revelers gathered in Northwest Washington last night to celebrate after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Texas's law prohibiting consensual sex between adults of the same sex. Some of them have been fighting state sodomy laws for years. 'At last, this is the end of a battle that has gone on for almost half a century,' said Frank Kameny, 78, the acknowledged father of the gay rights movement in the District. Kameny sued the federal government -- and lost -- after he was fired from his job as an astronomer at the Army Map Service in 1957 for being gay."

Ashcroft Justice Dept. Bars Gay Employees Event
Gay Issues

AP reports: "Civil rights groups and a senator criticized the Justice Department on Friday for rejecting plans by an employee group to hold a gay pride event at the agency's headquarters... Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., urged Ashcroft to reconsider the decision and threatened legislation if the matter weren't resolved... 'I find it particularly outrageous that the Department of Justice, whose mission is to ensure fairness for all Americans, would deprive its own staff members of the right to gather on public property,' Lautenberg wrote in a letter to Ashcroft. Lautenberg noted that Ashcroft was asked by Sen. Russ Feingold, D-Wis., during his confirmation hearing in September 2001 whether he would continue to allow DOJ Pride [to] hold its annual meeting at the department's headquarters, as other groups and minority employees are permitted. Ashcroft responded, 'It would be my intention not to discriminate against any group that appropriately constituted in the Department of Justice.'"

Colin Powell Defends 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'
Gay Issues

Doreen Brandt writes for 365Gay.com: " Colin Powell says gays and lesbians do not belong in the military. In an interview with the online teen magazine TeenInk.com Powell defended 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'. While denouncing homophobia and acknowledging the work of lesbian, gay and bisexual Americans at the State Department, the former head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff noted that 'I think it's a different matter with respect to the military, because you're essentially told who you're going to live with, who you're going to sleep next to.' His remarks to the teenage readers was in direct conflict with a recent study that shows that lifting the ban on lesbian, gay and bisexual service members would not compromise the privacy of heterosexual troops. The study...appears in the current issue of International Security. Powell's defense of 'Don't Ask' also comes as the number of calls increase to an organization providing legal help to gay soldiers."

In Bushworld, Bashing Gays Takes Precedence over Fighting Terrorism and Protecting Citizens
Gay Issues

Since 9/11, U.S. intelligence and military branches have faced a critical shortage of linguists, esp. those specializing in Arabic. So what does the Army do? Dismiss nine army linguists, six of them fluent in Arabic, because they are gay. A real help to the anti-terrorism cause, eh? The dismissed linguists were all based at the Army's Defense Language Institute in Monterey California. We wonder if the sweeping dismissal is a Bush effort to show its "control" over the military. Just a few days before the dismissals, a story ran nationally about how a large percentage of professors and students at the nearby Monterey Naval Postgrad School questioned the need and wisdom of the Bush W-ar. In any case, it is clear that under Bush, protecting citizens remains secondary to promoting the rightwing "moral agenda."

Bush Uses Extortion to Force Colleges to Allow Military Recruiters on Campus
Gay Issues

Harvard Law School is supposed to represent the highest-minded interpretation of the U.S. Constitution and American laws. For over ten years, in fact, the school has barred any group that discriminates on the basis of sexual orientation from using its facilities. Now, under Bush, the Air Force (which always targets the Ivy Leagues for recruitment) has demanded that colleges adhering to this policy allow their recruiters on campus - OR ELSE Bush will pull millions of federal dollars from these schools. Now if that ain't extortion, then George Bush didn't get installed by judicial fiat! (Btw - the one A list campus that has allowed recruiters is Stanford, home to the Hoover Institution and heavily connected to Condi Rice, Donald Rumsfeld, and a long list of other chickenhawks.)

Homophobic Republican Senatorial Candidate Calls Gay Voters 'Leeches, Lazy, Worthless and Perverts'
Gay Issues

"As a courtesy to all candidates running for statewide offices, Equality Tennessee, the state's only gay rights organization, [invited all] to attend our fifth congressional district candidate forum. Jane Griffin, the Republican Senatorial candidate, apparently believed the invitation was to speak rather than attend and meet potential voters. She responded: 'It is with deep regret...I cannot address your conclave of leeches. It would have been a delight to condemn roundly the most worthless and no-'count populace of women in Tennessee. You are too lazy to get yourself out of your filthy practices and who would want to marry a pervert? Certainly no decent man in Tennessee. Womanhood has fallen to a low degree indeed but you are the worst. It is my suspicion that you have a tax-exempt foundation so your perverted donors and fake benefactors can get their April 15 kickback. But by the Grace of the God of our Fathers, I will redeem the name of American and Tennessee Volunteer.'"

Relief Groups Recognize Domestic Partners of Terror Victims, But Homophobes Bitterly Complain
Gay Issues

"Red Cross is a neutral and impartial organization and we help people who need help," says spokesperson Stacey Grissom. "So in those cases where the next of kin is listed as a domestic partner, that would be a person who would definitely get benefits," she said. Ditto for the United Way and other large relief groups. But domestic partners still cannot receive government-funded relief in the forms of social security or worker's compensation, according to Matt Foreman, executive director of Empire State Pride Agenda. Meanwhile, "Rev. Louis P. Sheldon, chairman of the Traditional Values Coalition, said money should not be granted to homosexuals who lost partners in the attack. '[Relief organizations] should be first giving priority to those widows who were at home with their babies, and those widowers who lost their wives,' Sheldon said." Hey Rev. Lou - why don't you bring your message of hate to New York?

Naval Exhibit Displays Gay Sailor's Poem
Gay Issues

"A Smithsonian Institution exhibit on submarines in the Cold War includes a poem by a sailor who was discharged from the Navy for being gay. Tim Beauchamp, 36, wrote 'Sub Sailor's Views on 'Glasnost'' in December 1987 on board the USS Henry Clay, a nuclear submarine patrolling the North Atlantic... The poem reflects on the political clashes between the United States and the then-communist Soviet Union. Eight months after writing the poem, Beauchamp received an honorable discharge from the Navy after his superiors discovered he was gay, according to the Associated Press. He had served in the Navy for more than four years... 'The fact that such a committed and rule-bound serviceman was kicked out of the Navy for no other reason than being gay illustrates the stupidity and wastefulness of our current policy toward gays in the military,' said openly gay Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass." Democrats.com is proud to have Tim Beauchamp as an active member!

Coors Beer Offers Ads to Gay News Outlets While Funding Rabidly Rightwing, Anti-Gay Groups
Gay Issues

The gay community is proving not everything can be brushed off with a little flick of the propaganda broom. Because Coors Beer scion Scott Coors is gay, the company, long known for its bigotry, extended a feeble olive branch in the form of a light beer ad designed for gay publications. But there's no takers. Why? While sponsoring the ad, the company is still channeling money into such hate group front sites as the Heritage Foundation, Free Congress (which recently condemned homosexual sex as "an infamous crime against nature"), David Horowitz's Center for the Study of Popular Culture (which suggests blacks should be grateful for the gains slavery offered), etc. ad nauseum. But we aren't surprised. The entire right wing machine thinks phony PR and promises can buy off Hispanics, blacks, women, labor, gays, et al. while it's otherwise just business as usual.

To Save White House Face over Anti-Gay Worker Deal, Ari Fleischer Calls Salvation Army Folks Liars
Gay Issues

According to a Salvation Army document reviewed by the Washington Post, Bush made a commitment to issue a regulation exempting the Salvation Army and other religious charities from having to hire homosexuals. In exchange, the Salvation Army pledged to throw its support behind Bush's faith-based initiative program. Now, when confronted with this deal - in writing, no less - Ari Fleischer, rather than lying himself (you know that improved moral tone bit!) instead accused the Salvation Army of lying. The White House, says Ari the Egg with Eyebrows, has "absolutely not" made such a deal. Which is saying, in effect, that those darn drum and horn players are a bunch of real con artists! With spin doctors like Ari helping Bush, sites like ours don't have to work nearly so hard at exposing White House idiocy.

U.S. Makes Amnesty International's List of Nations Guilty of Torture and Ill-Treatment of Non-Heterosexual Groups
Gay Issues

The United States has won yet another global black mark. The country made Amnesty International's list of 30 countries where cases of torture and ill treatment of lesbians, gays, bisexual and transgendered people have been documented. Other nations making the list include Pakistan, Argentina, Russia, and Uganda. In the countries cited by AI, "There is an overriding tolerance of abuse because of the social stigma attached to homosexuality and gender norms," says William F. Schulz, exec. dir. of AI USA. Seventeen states in the U.S. still criminalize homosexuality, with no relief in sight under a Bush administration that is replete with intolerant members of the right-wing establishment.

Hatred in the Hallways: Gay Bashing in U.S. Schools at Epidemic Levels - Will It Worsen Under Bush?
Gay Issues

A new report by Human Rights Watch, 'Hatred in the Hallways' estimates that up to two million gay American teenagers are subjected to routine, sometimes violent, bullying at school. "The U.S. school system gets a failing grade when it comes to providing a safe place for gay students to get an education," says Michael Bochenek of the HRW. Appallingly, the investigators found that some teachers and administrators not only fail to discourage or penalize gay bashing, they sometimes encourage the bullying and even engage in harassment themselves. Victims are emotionally and/or physically, traumatized, while their chance at a decent education is stolen. With the new homophobic administration, what kind of future do these kids face now?

'Mean-Spirited' Anti-Gay School Amendment Passed By Rightwing House Majority
Gay Issues

An anti-gay amendment sponsored by Rep. Van Hilleary (R-TN) that would selectively withhold funding from schools that refuse to allow the Boy Scouts (which bar gays from membership), to use their facilities was passed by the House this week. The law is considered a direct slap at gay rights because the Scouts have never lost their ability to meet in schools. "This was an empty, mean-sprited gesture that accomplished nothing," says Winnie Stachelberg of the Human Rights Campaign. The list of opponents to the law is long and includes many traditional organizations such as the PTA and the National School Board Association. But Shrub insists the GOP is "Main Street America." Maybe in a different and awful universe!

Zack Exley Takes on Log Cabin Republicans
Gay Issues

Zack Exley, creator of the outstanding parody sites GWBush.com and CNNdN.com, is at it again. Now he's taking on the "Log Cabin Republicans," the self-hating gays who choose to support a party led by Jesse Helms, Pat Robertson, James Dobson, and Rush Limbaugh - a party that works incessantly to deny their existence and take away their rights, and often says out loud that they should die and go to hell.

Gay and Lesbian Boycott Stops Dr. Laura
Gay Issues

Paramount cancelled Dr. Laura Schlessinger's TV show after seven months, and even she gave gay and lesbian activists the credit. "I believe it could have earned a substantial audience in time, but the television advertiser boycott precluded that." More than 90 sponsors across the U.S. eventually dropped ads to the TV show as a result of the boycott. "The gay community has sent a very strong message that we're no longer an easy mark," said Joan Garry, executive director of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation.

Texas Court Upholds Sodomy Law
Gay Issues

A Texas appeals court upheld the state's sodomy law in the case of two men charged with having sex in a private home. In Texas, gay sex is a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of up to $500. Shrub will have to be awfully careful which aides he brings with him when he visits his ranch.

The Race to Stop Dr. Laura's Talk Show. Will it Work?
Gay Issues

Despite the fact that Dick Cheney's daughter is a lesbian, the Republican Party has not been kind to gays. The general view among the GOP wing involved in the "cultural wars" is that gays are "biological errors." Dr. Laura, although not officially aligned with the Republican Party, speaks their language. The Gay community, however, has had enough. Led by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, a coalition of groups has mounted a strong boycott of Dr. Laura's upcoming television program. Many high-powered corporate sponsors have withdrawn their advertising, casting the show's future in doubt.