Wednesday, 30 September 2009

AMERICAblog News| A great nation deserves the truth: Senate Dems could (and should) actually pass a Dem. health insurance reform bill

AMERICAblog News A great nation deserves the truth: Senate Dems could (and should) actually pass a Dem. health insurance reform bill

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AMERICAblog News| A great nation deserves the truth: Who cares what Olympia Snowe thinks?

AMERICAblog News A great nation deserves the truth: Who cares what Olympia Snowe thinks?

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AMERICAblog News| A great nation deserves the truth: DNC says Cillizza is wrong

AMERICAblog News A great nation deserves the truth: DNC says Cillizza is wrong

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AMERICAblog News| A great nation deserves the truth: Rep. Grayson's excellent speech on GOP health care plan upset the Republicans and George Stephanopoulos

AMERICAblog News A great nation deserves the truth: Rep. Grayson's excellent speech on GOP health care plan upset the Republicans and George Stephanopoulos

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Air Force Hero Forced to Choose: Admit You're Gay or Accept Rape Charge

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Air Force Hero Forced to Choose: Admit You're Gay or Accept Rape Charge

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Vatican Tries to Re-Brand Sexual Abuse | CarnalNation

Vatican Tries to Re-Brand Sexual Abuse CarnalNation

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: More on apparent NYC gay-bashing, and cops' non-response

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: More on apparent NYC gay-bashing, and cops' non-response

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Salt Lake City man calls Judy Shepard a "liar"

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Salt Lake City man calls Judy Shepard a "liar"

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Maine Bishop continues raising money at churches for anti-gay marriage campaign

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Maine Bishop continues raising money at churches for anti-gay marriage campaign And they say that the Holy Mother Roman Catholic Church is financially strapped . . . P L E A S E !

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The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt. 5 | The Bilerico Project

The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt. 5 The Bilerico Project

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Like throwing lions to the Christians | The Bilerico Project

Like throwing lions to the Christians The Bilerico Project

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The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt. 4 | The Bilerico Project

The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt. 4 The Bilerico Project

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Bill Clinton comes out fully for gay marriage

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Bill Clinton comes out fully for gay marriage

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The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt 3. | The Bilerico Project

The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt 3. The Bilerico Project

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The Ultimate Tragedy | The Bilerico Project

The Ultimate Tragedy The Bilerico Project

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My letter to The Hill on LGBT people and health care | The Bilerico Project

My letter to <i>The Hill</i> on LGBT people and health care The Bilerico Project

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Is the Bishop of Maine going to keep funding the anti-gay's campaign lies?

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Is the Bishop of Maine going to keep funding the anti-gay's campaign lies? Is the Holy Mother Roman Catholic Church once again being allowed to stick its nose in where it doesn't belong? Perhaps its tax-exempt status should be reviewed?

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Will health care reform throw the gays out along with the immigrants?

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Will health care reform throw the gays out along with the immigrants?

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: In Washington State, Approve 71 is ahead 51% - 44%: " It is critical that those who support the law turn out to vote.”

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: In Washington State, Approve 71 is ahead 51% - 44%: " It is critical that those who support the law turn out to vote.”

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: NYPD reportedly drops the ball on a hate crime

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: NYPD reportedly drops the ball on a hate crime

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Senate Panel Rejects Tighter Abortion Limits in Health Care Bill - NYTimes.com

Senate Panel Rejects Tighter Abortion Limits in Health Care Bill - NYTimes.com

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Tuesday, 29 September 2009

AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Frank Schubert trashed Maine's local school boards; doesn't like Mainers having local control

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Frank Schubert trashed Maine's local school boards; doesn't like Mainers having local control It will be interesting what Mainers have to say about Mr. Schubert, his attitudes and his ways. While we're on the subject, I will find it interesting what is said baout the ubiquitous interference of the Catholic Church.

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: The Advocate on the ENDA Hearings

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: The Advocate on the ENDA Hearings

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: "With ENDA, Congress has an opportunity to take a leadership position..."

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: "With ENDA, Congress has an opportunity to take a leadership position..."

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Barney Frank says voting yes on gay rights is a bad thing if you want to get re-elected

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Barney Frank says voting yes on gay rights is a bad thing if you want to get re-elected I learned as a youngster that the Congress is a bi-cameral governing body. But a bi-cameeral representative. Huh?

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: Obama admin. defends DOMA, seeks dismissal of GLAD's Gill v. OPM case

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: Obama admin. defends DOMA, seeks dismissal of GLAD's Gill v. OPM case Joe Sudbay has posted a very interesting and important presentation at present being handled by the Court. Stay tuned for further news.

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AMERICAblog Gay | A great people deserve their rights: DailyKos poll on Maine shows it's close: "It's a battle between the side who can best bring out its supporters to the polls."

AMERICAblog Gay A great people deserve their rights: DailyKos poll on Maine shows it's close: "It's a battle between the side who can best bring out its supporters to the polls."

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Telling your co-workers you're gay

Telling your co-workers you're gay

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HIV News & Views, September 29, 2009

HIV News & Views, September 29, 2009 A balancing presentation to the news of yesteday.

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GOP Rep. Trent Franks Calls Obama "An Enemy Of Humanity"

GOP Rep. Trent Franks Calls Obama "An Enemy Of Humanity" otherwise known as Rep. Joe Wilson now has a new playmate.

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Senate panel rejects govt-run insurance option - Road Runner

Senate panel rejects govt-run insurance option - Road Runner

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Abortion Fight Complicates Debate on Health Care - NYTimes.com

Abortion Fight Complicates Debate on Health Care - NYTimes.com

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Live Blogging: Senate Finance Committee Debate on Public Option - Prescriptions Blog - NYTimes.com

Live Blogging: Senate Finance Committee Debate on Public Option - Prescriptions Blog - NYTimes.com

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Sunday, 27 September 2009

The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt. 2





Posted: 24 Sep 2009 03:30 PM PDT

"We are determined to make every American citizen the subject of his country's interest and concern; and we will never regard any faithful law-abiding group within our borders as superfluous. The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little."

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Second Inaugural Address

"Sixty years after Roosevelt's Second Inaugural, that egalitarian test, I think, is still the best measure of our progress and humanity, and the core of The Triumph of Meanness is the contention that as a nation we are failing that test."

Nicolaus Mills, The Triumph of Meanness - America's War Against Its Better Self.

Home of the Mean

As with the election of Barack Obama last fall, the health care reform debate presents us with another opportunity to decide what kind of country we want to be. But that making that choice requires an unvarnished look at the country we have become.

In the seventy-plus years since Roosevelt's Second Inaugural, and the dozen years since Nicolaus Mills' offered his assessment that "as a nation we are failing" at "providing enough for those who have too little," we have actually become a country where a surprising number believe that those who have too little don't deserve to have any more than they do. It's a phenomenon at play in our reactions to any number of current crises, including health care reform.

Continue reading "The Morality of Health Care Reform, Pt. 2"...

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Toward a same-sex marriage political vocabulary





Posted: 24 Sep 2009 04:30 PM PDT

I've blogged before about how we don't really have a way of describing the political diversity within the American queer population on LGBT issues. So I'm humbly proposing a few terms to discuss the way people think and talk about same-sex marriage. We're far from uniform within the queer community when it comes to our beliefs about this institution and our activism around it, and instead of starting from zero every time we talk about what X or Y person thinks about it, it would make sense to develop a meta-political vocabulary.

I came up with six rough categories, based not on polling data or studies since I don't know of any that are sufficient to this end, and therefore these terms are entirely inappropriate in a policy discussion. It's based instead on what I've learned from reading several dozen queer blogs and a dozen queer journals daily for going on three years now, as well as political discussions here on the site and among friends. Sure, there are as many beliefs when it comes to same-sex marriage as there are people in the LGBTQ population, and there's lots of diversity within these categories, but it's a starting point.

In order of descending size:

Continue reading "Toward a same-sex marriage political vocabulary"...

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Los Angeles Group Files Ballot to Repeal Prop 8


Posted: 24 Sep 2009 05:30 PM PDT

A coalition of grassroots groups seeking to repeal Prop 8 in California next year filed an initiative with the state Attorney General Thursday morning. However, there is still no consensus on strategy or ballot language.

The proposed initiative submitted by Love Honor Cherish opens with strong language that protects "religious freedom" - exempting religious officials or institutions from have to perform same sex marriages.

The initiative then strikes the current definition of marriage as between a man and a woman and substitutes - "Marriage is between only two persons and shall not be restricted on the basis of race, color, creed, ancestry, national origin, sex, gender, sexual orientation, or religion."

Love Honor Cherish (LHC) co-founder John Henning said that the group conferred with attorneys and pollsters "within and outside the LGBT movement" on the language - some of whom do not favor the 2010 strategy - before the initiative was submitted.

Executive director Geoff Kors confirmed that they helped with the language.

Continue reading "Los Angeles Group Files Ballot to Repeal Prop 8 "...

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Washington's R-71 updates. Posted: 23 September 2009


Polling, the 50's that neither lived nor died, and everyone's a victim


New poll! According to internal polling released yesterday by the Approve R-71 (the pro-gay side), they're up 51-45. That's a whole lot closer than earlier polling that suggested domestic partnerships were favored 66-33. The Seattle P-I speculated that the discrepancy is caused by the fact that the more recent polling screened for likely voters, which, in off-off-year elections (like Nov. 2009), is a smaller, more conservative pool. A big part of this election is going to come down to voter turnout, so if you live in Washington make sure everyone you know votes. Volunteer to take their mail-in ballots to the post office yourself if you have to.

I've heard of perpetual adolescents, but this is ridiculous. The homophobes aren't even being subtle about the fact that they base their politics on returning America to an Eisenhower Era that exists only in their fantasies:

Continue reading "Washington's R-71 updates: Polling, the 50's that neither lived nor died, and everyone's a victim"...

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Broadway Impact - 10-11-09

Broadway Impact - 10-11-09 Interesting update of the National Equality March.

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Bush In 2008: "I'm Not Going To Tell Some Gay Kid In The Audience That He Can't Get Married"

Bush In 2008: "I'm Not Going To Tell Some Gay Kid In The Audience That He Can't Get Married"

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Taking Health Care Courtship Up Another Notch





By SHERYL GAY STOLBERG

White House officials say they have begun an aggressive campaign to line up votes for a health care bill.

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Friday, 25 September 2009

Study: Majority of workers hide sexual orientation, gender identity at work | News Story on 365gay.com

Study: Majority of workers hide sexual orientation, gender identity at work News Story on 365gay.com: "(Washington, D.C.) A majority – 51 percent – of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender workers continue to hide their identity from most or all co-workers, according to a new report released today from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation that examines the real-life experiences of LGBT workers."

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Withers: Former child actor goes after Darwin

Withers: Former child actor goes after Darwin

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Besen: Wingnuts strike again | News Story on 365gay.com

Besen: Wingnuts strike again News Story on 365gay.com: "Fresh off its wing nut wingding on the National Mall, the far-out fringe held its “Values Voter” summit in Washington last week."

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Gay bar has new ID rule for cross-dressers | News Story on 365gay.com

OF INTEREST . . . Gay bar has new ID rule for cross-dressers News Story on 365gay.com OF NOTE . . . . . . . Hunters Nightclub IS a gay establishment. OF COURSE .. . . . Discrimination comes in many sizes, shapes and colours

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Thursday, 24 September 2009

Editorial - The Numbers and Health Care Reform - NYTimes.com

Editorial - The Numbers and Health Care Reform - NYTimes.com

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Vanasco: NYC mayor says no marriage for New York this year | News Story on 365gay.com

Vanasco: NYC mayor says no marriage for New York this year News Story on 365gay.com

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A world first: Vaccine helps prevent HIV infection

A world first: Vaccine helps prevent HIV infection

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Ruby-Sachs: GOP Thinks Gay Marriage is Socialist

Ruby-Sachs: GOP Thinks Gay Marriage is Socialist

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Measure submitted to dump Calif. gay marriage ban

Measure submitted to dump Calif. gay marriage ban

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Gay clergy: Where large Protestant churches stand

Gay clergy: Where large Protestant churches stand

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Lutheran bishop warns about withholding donatons

Lutheran bishop warns about withholding donatons

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Senator Tries to Allay Fears on Health Overhaul

Image representing New York Times as depicted ...Image via CrunchBase
Senator Tries to Allay Fears on Health Overhaul

By ROBERT PEAR

Published: September 23, 2009

WASHINGTON — Senator Bill Nelson of Florida desperately wants to expand health insurance coverage because one in five Floridians is uninsured. As a former state insurance commissioner, he wants to crack down on insurers. And as a member of the Senate Finance Committee, he can shape legislation to achieve both goals.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/24/health/policy/24medicare.html?th&emc=th


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The Way We Die Now

The New York Times

OPINION


Timothy Egan: The Way We Die Now

For our health care system to live, less money must be spent on dying patients.

http://egan.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/09/23/the-way-we-die-now/?th&emc=th

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Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Universal health care is still an LGBT issue


The following has been clipped from The Bilerico Project Report dated 19 September 2009.
I have barely posted anything about health care now that the "debate" (if you will) is in full-swing all over the country. It's partly because I figure that an issue that's being covered everywhere doesn't need any help from me now, but also because all the news has been so damn depressing on this front. The bill keeps on getting compromised, so much so that the bill that just came out of the Senate Finance Committee is just one big love letter to the insurance industry. So I'm just waiting to see what actually passes, if the CPC holds the caucus line, what happens to the bill in conference, and if Obama's technocratic claim to support "what works" actually means anything.

But it's still the big LGBT issue. Tammy Baldwin explains how:

Continue reading "Universal health care is still an LGBT issue"...

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Ohio, Eddie Izzard, eating disorders, and homeless LGBT youth




The following has been clipped from The Bilerico Project Report dated 18 September 2009.
_____________________________

What nuggets happened this week that Projectors should know about but none of the contributors got around to blogging? Why funny you should ask...

 Gay and bisexual teens are more vulnerable to eating disorders (Hat tip to Barbara)

 Following up on Toni Broaddus, Kip Williams and Robin McGehee's response editorials, frequent guest blogger Adam Bink has his own thought on the federal vs state strategy for LGBT rights.

 The Ohio House of Representatives passed House Bill 176, the Equal Housing and Employment Act. State Representative and Republican candidate for Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, previously an LGBT ally, flipped positions and voted against the legislation.

 After President Obama extended the National Emergency for one year last Thursday, experts noted that the move allows him additional time to sign an executive order suspending Don't Ask, Don't Tell. So far it doesn't look like he will. (Hat tip to Indra)

 Across the United States, thousands of kids are kicked out of their homes each year for being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

 Comedian and actor Eddie Izzard, a "47-year-old cross-dresser with no sporting inclination," completed 43 marathons in 52 days, a feat of jogging that covered 1,100 miles. (Hat tip to Robin)



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Maybe an individual mandate is a tax cut

Health Insurance Does Not Insure HealthImage by SavaTheAggie via Flickr

OF INTEREST . . .

George Stephanopoulos tried to argue today that by requiring all Americans to get health insurance, President Obama was imposing a tax increase on those Americans who don't have insurance - because he's requiring them to pay money for something (an odd argument, since by that definition, shopping for food, or buying a CD, is a tax increase).

OF NOTE . . . . . . .

But in any case, if one wants to argue that making someone pay a monthly fee for insurance is a tax increase, then lowering the monthly premiums for the rest of us - which supposedly Obama's plan is going to do - would be a tax cut for the rest of us. And considering more of us are insured than uninsured, that would mean most of the country would be getting a pretty large tax cut. So there.

OF COURSE . . . .


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Sunday, 20 September 2009

What a difference 23 years makes.



What a difference 23 years makes.


On September 18, 1986, I woke up and thought I would try this new "one day at a time" thing I had been hearing about in meetings. Earlier that year, I had racked up my second DUI and was looking at spending time in jail for it.

Today I can say that the "one day at a time thing" has worked for 23 years. Some days have been easy, some were as painful as surgery without anesthesia.

I have watched friends die, lost my beloved lhasa apso, lost the house we got married in, got married, and helped get LGBT legislation passed in New Mexico. As my friend Julia would say, "It's a very long list."
That is what happens when one stays alive for 54 years, seeing many things, many people and places, in short, experiencing life. There is sadness and joy, moments that are just about taking a breath, and moments that are breathtaking.

Considering where I was headed, I am grateful today to be taking many breaths.

As a Latina lesbian honoring Hispanic Heritage month, I am making a big deal out of 23 years of sobriety. I am proud to have Latino blood flowing in my veins and that for today, I am sober.

Thanks to all the folks who have held my hand during these 23 years. The road has been bumpy but I am grateful to share the road with such loving, compassionate people.



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More Polling in Maine



The following has been clipped from The Bilerico Project Report dated 18 September  2009.
Here's the most recent polling in Maine from Research 2000 by DailyKos:


The numbers aren't too bad right now; this could go either way. The break-down is what we've seen in all these campaigns before: women, younger people, Democrats, and urban areas are more likely to be OK with same-sex marriage.






The LGBT side of the question is already doing a better job with the ads and framing of the debate. Now they want more volunteers to show up and do more than phone bank:

Continue reading "More polling in Maine"...

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Image representing New York Times as depicted ...Image via CrunchBase







This is the hyperlink to The New York Times weblog called PRAESCRIPTIONS: Making Sense of the Health Care Debate, what you might call a mini-timeline published within the function of the blog format.

Take the time out to read it;  it's really worthwhile and a great tool for education of this most important issue of our current state of affairs. --TK

The Scourge Persists

By BOB HERBERT

The fact that a black man is in the White House has so unsettled much of white America that the lid is coming off the racism that had been simmering all along.



Here We Go Again

By CHARLES M. BLOW

Most Americans know that racism is an issue in this country. The question is if — and to what degree — that racism animates critics of the president.

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Friday, 18 September 2009

Obama announces intent to disobey law governing State Dept meetings, while enforcing anti-gay laws


I think our community deserves an answer to a very important question.













Why is the Obama administration repeatedly refusing to obey laws on a variety of matters, but when it comes to anti-gay laws such as DOMA and Don't Ask Don't Tell, or the HIV travel ban, not only does the Obama administration refuse to disobey them, they actively defend DOMA and DADT in court. What's worse, the administration, with the help of Barney Frank, has argued that if they didn't defend DOMA in court, if they didn't keep kicking two US soldiers a day out of the military, then they'd be somehow undercutting the law just like the Bush administration did, and that would be wrong.



But that's exactly what the Obama administration is doing in countless non-gay cases that we've document over the past several months.



This is why Joe and I have been so critical of the administration lately. Something is going on. They're backing off of their promises to our community, and giving these phony excuses for why they're doing it, and then Barney Frank jumps in and defends them, using the same phony excuse. Then we catch them in the lie.



Perhaps it's time that our lead groups, beyond just SLDN, started holding the administration's feet to the fire on their promises to our community (I know, they would risk those White House cocktail invites). And perhaps it's time that Tammy Baldwin grew a pair, and that Barney Frank got over this post-gay phase he seems to be going through.







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One Person's Definition of Equality in Day to Day Living

Vector image of a Michigan county-designated h...Image via Wikipedia

The following haas been clipped and posted from The Bilerico Project Report dated 16 September 2009.

Equality; being involved in LGBT politics means that I probably utter or hear this word a hundred or more times every day but, do I truly understand what it means? What are the implications it carries for my private as well as my public life?

I work for One Kalamazoo, a ballot question committee campaigning to affirm a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender inclusive Non-Discrimination Ordinance in Kalamazoo, MI. The ordinance was passed unanimously ...twice by the city commission and derailed...twice by a small group of opposition. It will go to a city-wide vote on November 3. I've been working for this ordinance for quite sometime now and I've observed closely as new faces joined in support.

Equality can mean many things to different people. In fact, it means many things to me, for instance; it means I should have the same civil rights as you. It means I don't get to judge you and you don't get to judge me. It means that how much money somebody makes doesn't give them the right to treat me as their lesser. Often, our opponents accuse us of demanding "special rights." Not true. "Gay agenda"? Maybe; if you consider fair and equal opportunity for everyone an agenda. Within the context of my politics, it means that others shouldn't be allowed to deprive me of the same rights and considerations under our common laws that are widely taken for granted. It's not right that my viability as a person can be called into question because I may not conform in some way to mainstream standards which are unthinkingly and unquestioningly agreed upon by a fictional majority. That is my understanding of the public position of the LGBT equality movement as well.

Continue reading "What is equality, really?"...


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DADT repeal in 2010

{{w|Patrick Murphy (politician)}}, member of t...Image via Wikipedia

The following has been clipped from The Bilerico Project Report dated 16 September 2009

They're setting a time line for DADT repeal in 2010:

Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-Pa.) said he expects the House to hold hearings on a bill to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" in winter or spring of 2010.

Murphy, speaking to the Blade at a Wednesday event sponsored by the Raben Group, a D.C.-based public affairs firm, also said he has 166 co-sponsors lined up for the measure and commitments from another 10 lawmakers to vote for the bill but not sponsor it.

Again, the Senate's going to be a stumbling block, but they're working on getting votes.

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My Offended Reader in Maine

A 6th century mosaic of :en:Jesus at Church Sa...Image via Wikipedia


The following is from a posting on 17 September 2009 of The Bilerico Project Report.
_____________________________________________

Dear "Father" Tony:

Your fanatically anti-Catholic efforts sadden me and I will pray for you because I think you need it desperately. Have you not asked yourself why you are attacking our clergy? Isn't it self-serving? Don't bother responding, you will have to answer to God our Father, not to us.

Yours in Jesus Christ,

Maine Catholics who follow the teachings of the One True Church.

[FYI: Elsewhere, I have all but outed some gay Maine priests for allowing the outrageous "second collection" that will go to support the anti-gay efforts in Maine. That is why this reader is irritated.]

Continue reading "My Offended Reader in Maine"...

TK: Please continue . . . this is a fascinating take on the day to day activities of our 'ordained' brethen

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Same-Sex Among us - Bangor Daily News

Same-Sex Among us - Bangor Daily News Shared via AddThis

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Chairman of the Joint Chiefs still giving odd non-committal answers about repealing DADT

74326727SM003_obamaImage by cena carioca via Flickr

The following has been clipped from the Americablog Gay dated 16 September 2009 _________________________

At what point does Admiral Mullen actually have to start following President Obama's orders, and not the other way around? And when exactly will President Obama be moving ahead on this strategy to repeal DADT? After health care reform is done? But then we'll be doing Wall Street Reform. And next year is the congressional elections, and we've already been told to forget gay stuff that year. So when will be a good time to set our people free? SLDN is pissed, and rightly so.

TK: What is it with this admiral? Is he senile, waterlogged, arrogant, or just plain dumb?  Perhaps the earwigs have gotten to what little brain matter he has?  Then again, isn't the military supposed to stay clear and above the political fray, as are the religious establishments?
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Thursday, 17 September 2009

HIV In The News from THE BODY dated 17 September 2009

New "Report Card" Finds HIV Drug Industry Doesn't Make the Grade


Abbott Laboratories: F. Roche: D. Boehringer Ingelheim: D+. If the nine major HIV drug companies were in school, most would probably be in detention, according to a new "report card" issued by the AIDS Treatment Activists Coalition (ATAC). ATAC graded the drug companies in five different categories, including fair pricing and their relationship with the HIV community. Some did alright -- Merck & Co. and Tibotec both got B's -- but most didn't fare as well. In this one-on-one interview, we get the nitty-gritty on this telling report from longtime HIV/AIDS journalist and activist Bob Huff, a member of ATAC?s board of directors. (Article from TheBody.com)


Dear Elton John: You're Too Gay and Old to Adopt an HIV-Positive Boy. Signed, Ukraine

It's a sad day when an HIV-positive child is stuck in an orphanage, unlikely ever to be adopted. However, the Ukranian Family, Youth and Sports Minister Yuriy Pavlenko apparently felt confident in rejecting singer/songwriter Elton John's bid to adopt a 14-month old HIV-positive boy named Lev. After all, Elton John didn't meet the criteria: He was neither legally married (he's in a civil union) nor young enough, according to Ukraine's rules. Pavlenko seemed to care little that the adoption would transform Lev's life and perhaps spur other people to adopt HIV-positive children in resource-poor countries. (Article from TheBody.com)


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Corvino: Always and everywhere?

Corvino: Always and everywhere?

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Corvino: A gay marriage opponent responds

Corvino: A gay marriage opponent responds

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The Catholic Church enters Maine's marriage battle

St. Peter's Basilica at Early Morning Photo wa...Image via Wikipedia
The following has been clipped from The Bilerico Project Report published 15 September 2009.
______________________________
"It is remarkable the arrogance of this craven coven of priests and bishops who believe that they can interfere and intervene in the lives of the so-called "faithful" to suit their interests and purposes.  Where paedophilia failed to bring in recruits to their ranks, now they prey (and pray) on the inner fears of the common man with their ever so NOT subtle homophobia to control the masses. And all this under the guise of a tax-free "church" status rather than as a guide to individual spirituality.  Once again Holy Mother Roman Catholic Church steps in to where she is not wanted and in to where she does not belong."  -- TK
The Catholic Church is revving up for the ballot initiative in Maine. Does anyone think it's appropriate for the Church to be saying that a legal contract is defined by God? Notice the children being forced to participate in this ritual (after they complain about marriage being taught in schools!), as well as the, um, Church historian they interviewed who said that the Church's teachings aren't influenced by the changing times or by politics. Even for homophobes, these people have a stunning lack of self-awareness.
TK: One thing is for certain, and that is that the bully pulpiteers have a plethora of arrogance.


Continue reading "The Catholic Church enters Maine's marriage battle"...





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Chai Feldblum Nominated to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Seal of the United States Equal Employment Opp...Image via Wikipedia
The White House announced Monday that it will nominate Chai Feldblum, LGBT rights scholar and advocate, to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Chai is a Georgetown Law Professor, former law clerk to former Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun, a primary mover behind passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and a longtime advocate for people with disabilities. She is also the partner of Bilerico contributor Nan Hunter.


Chai is the first openly gay or lesbian person appointed to the EEOC, which issues regulations implementing anti-discrimination laws (including ENDA when it passes!) and which authorizes test case litigation under anti-discrimination laws. If confirmed, she will serve a five year term.

Bilerico readers who remember the early Clinton years may remember the Senate confirmation battle over Roberta Achtenberg, nominated to be Assistant Secretary of HUD. She was confirmed, but not before Jesse Helms referred to her as that "damn lesbian." Achtenberg was the former executive director of the Lesbian Rights Project/National Center for Lesbian Rights. So she wasn't just a lesbian, she was an activist.

Jesse Helms is long gone, but the Alliance Defense Fund already has set its sights on Feldblum.
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DOMA Repeal Legislation Introduced

{{w|Jerrold Nadler}}, member of the United Sta...Image via Wikipedia
Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) had a press conference today to announce the introduction of the "Respect for Marriage Act." The legislation would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act that passed Congress and was signed into law by President Clinton in 1996. Interestingly enough, Clinton sent a statement to be read at the presser.


"Today, we celebrate the first step toward overturning the Defense of Marriage Act and sending that ugly law into the history books where it belongs," said Nadler, adding that the new RMA bill has 91 original cosponsors.

Nadler later read a statement from former President Bill Clinton thanking Reps. Nadler, Baldwin, Polis, John Conyers of Michigan, John Lewis of Georgia, Nydia Velazquez of New York and Barbara Lee of California, for introducing the legislation. Clinton signed DOMA into law in 1996.

"Throughout my life I have opposed discrimination of any kind," Clinton said in the statement. "When the Defense of Marriage Act was passed, gay couples could not marry anywhere in the United States or the world for that matter. Thirteen years later, the fabric of our country has changed, and so should this policy."  91 original co-sponsors is a big deal; I never would have thought they'd get that many.

Barney FrankImage via Wikipedia

Rep Barney Frank is not a co-sponsor.


The LGBT orgs pumped out statements right after the press conference; they're after the jump.



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Joan Walsh @ Salon: The Blackening of the President


The following has been clipped from Salon via The Bilerico Project Report dated 16 September 2009.
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There's a portion of America that has insisted, despite ample evidence to the contrary, that the nomination and election of the first black president was proof that we've reached a post-racial society. The President's status as a biracial man largely raised in the Midwest was seen as a "safe" black man -- not of the traditional civil rights leadership often seen as an ornery bunch mucking in society by many. He was not the descendant of West African slaves, an origin that made many American blacks of that extraction suspicious of his racial fidelity.

But as the campaign wore on, we saw display after sad display of outright racism and bigotry (documented in dozens of Blend posts) emerge, stoked by the McCain/Palin campaign and the noisemakers on the right. But the vile behavior seemed to come from a demographic we all knew was below the surface -- people who would never vote for a black man under any circumstance. It all died down for a millisecond -- a period of calm after the inauguration, but the full-out attack was cooking as the anger at the reality that Barack Obama is President sunk in when he started affecting policy and approach to governing.

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The Dawn of LGBT Equality

Sometimes I wonder if we'll miss the moment when the LGBT revolution really does arrive. Many, myself included, have always expected that moment to come with cheers and back slapping as equal rights legislation finally becomes law. Others may be looking for the election of the first gay president or the installation of the first lesbian member of the U.S. Supreme Court.

I have a funny feeling, though, that I just saw the revolution dawn, and it didn't happen in Washington, D.C. The revolution arrived this past Saturday in Lawrence, Kan., inside the home of the senior pastor of the oldest church in the state.

I was in Linda Luckey and the Rev. Peter Luckey's living room, and I was surrounded by a group of largely heterosexual couples, ranging in age from 40 to their late 70s. We were all staring raptly at a DVD playing on a small TV.

Continue reading "The Dawn of LGBT Equality"...

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Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Where Have All The Flowers Gone?

Requiescat in pacem.  Amen.
Mary Travers, whose ringing, earnest vocals with the folk trio Peter, Paul and Mary made songs like "Blowin' in the Wind," "If I Had a Hammer" and "Where Have All the Flowers Gone?" enduring anthems of the 1960s protest movement, has died at 72.
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Tuesday, 15 September 2009

On Loyalty Oaths or Ebony and Ivory Live Together In Perfect Harmony

Map of laws and executive orders banning emplo...Image via Wikipedia
The following has been clipped from The Bilerico Project Report dated 14 September 2009.
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I'm sure you've all heard by now that Rep. Jerry Nadler plans on introducing a bill to repeal DOMA in the House, and that Barney Frank isn't co-sponsoring because he's worried that the "certainty principle" will be a poison pill that will kill the bill and that it will be a distraction from other legislation like ENDA.


Personally, it seems like a rather academic debate right now considering that the bill won't be voted on until at least after the 2010 midterms and that it won't pass the Senate in Obama's first term, if it does pass within the next decade. Sorry, I just don't feel the optimism here.

But there are also plenty of reasons to think that Frank either should or should not cosponsor the bill. There is a strategic debate there, and we're having it because the person at the center of that strategic debate is Barney Frank, one of the gay movement's smartest, most powerful, and staunchest actors. If it were anyone else, he'd probably be shouted down as an "uncle Tom" or a "traitor." If anyone would have paid attention in the first place.

More extreme (in rhetoric and emotion, not politics) members of the LGBT population have already gotten fed up with Frank. Aravosis is now referring to the Congressman as "formerly gay," because apparently having a different opinion on a strategic discussion means that you're no longer allowed to suck dick. Joe Sudby, who generally shows more restraint, said:

But, sometimes, we really need our allies to be our allies, not just the smartest people around.

His comment is fairly representative of what a lot of people are actually saying when they call someone an "uncle Tom" for not agreeing with them that marriage is the most important issue ever, for example. They don't want people to think on their own or help out as they can - they want loyalty.

But loyalty isn't defined as loyalty to the community or loyalty to a certain goal. It's defined as "You're a good, loyal, real gay person if you agree with me." For some reason, it's not a definition people on the left use, but the center-left/big-city liberal section of the community that's always just assumed it had the God-given right to define the strategies, goals, and composition of the LGBT movement.

Continue reading "On loyalty oaths"...

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