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High court upholds Mexico City same-sex marriage law – LGBTQ Nation

Posted: August 7th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on High court upholds Mexico City same-sex marriage law – LGBTQ Nation

The tides are turning, and same-sex marriage is a reality. While yours truly are politically opposed to government-sanctioned "marriage" and believe the rights it grants should be legal as opposed to religiously-influenced unions in each and every case, we acknowledge the reality that the world simply doesn't function that way—at least not yet.

And that's why we're thrilled to hear that just one day after the defeat of "Proposition Hate" in California, Mexico's Supreme Court rejected the conservative federal government's challenge to a landmark law legalizing same-sex marriage back in March with a resounding 8-2 ruling. The fact is, that while marriage is largely an outmoded institution, the sentiments, feelings, and yes, the legal rights it grants to the people who want it are necessary, important, and honorable. Denying basic sentimentality of mutual love to anyone—for any reason—is shamefully fear-filled. So we say good for you, Mexico. And therefore, good for us all.

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Birmingham gay couple save life of man who abused them – Sunday Mercury

Posted: August 7th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on Birmingham gay couple save life of man who abused them – Sunday Mercury

A gay couple in Birmingham, U.K., grabbed a ladder and rescued their homophobic neighbor and his whole family from the roof of their burning home, Ben Goldby reports. The gay couple, Bryn and James Tudor, had already "made headlines in 2005 when they became the first homosexual couple to tie the knot in a civil partnership in Birmingham." That preceded 3 years of verbal abuse from their neighbor, 29-year-old Baljit Koonar. But in the literal heat of the moment, none of that bigotry mattered. "Our thoughts weren’t about him. We wanted to get the kids down as soon as we could. You don’t think about anything that person has done, it’s just about the value of human life," James said.

As Michael A. Jones wrote, "Kind of makes you think, right? The person you treat with homophobic, transphobic, racist, or sexist remarks today may just end up being the same person who one day saves your life."

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TransGriot: Hypermasculinity Is Killing Our Kids

Posted: August 7th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on TransGriot: Hypermasculinity Is Killing Our Kids

An absolutely heart-breaking story of manslaughter is making headlines after 20 year old Pedro Jones confessed to punching his girlfriend's 17 month old baby boy to death. Jones said, "I was trying to make him act like a boy instead of a little girl." While the family is understandably outraged, that single quote is the only reference to transphobia in all mainstream media.

Trans activist Monica Roberts cuts to the issue's root: "One of the things I've been sickened about lately is kids who are being beaten because they aren't acting 'masculine enough' for the male adults in their lives." Indeed, Jones' crime is not the first. In 2005, 3 year old Ronnie Paris Jr. was killed by his 21 year old father by repeatedly slapping him around to ensure he wouldn't grow up to be "soft" or a "sissy." As TransGriot writes, "Homophobia and transphobia feeds into these hypermasculine attitudes, and it has got to stop."

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Angilcare flags withdrawal over gay adoption bill — ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Company)

Posted: August 7th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on Angilcare flags withdrawal over gay adoption bill — ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Company)

With the decision handed down that names Proposition 8 unconstitutional, the U.S. has taken a step towards sensibility in how it treats the personal freedoms and rights of its citizens. Australia may be taking another such step; but not if Angilcare adoption agencies has anything to say about it.

Angilcare, one of only 3 non-government, accredited adoption services in the state of New South Wales, has threatened to withdraw its services if the state passes a bill that will allow same sex couples to adopt. Chief executive Peter Kell wrote a letter to state MPs outlining 11 reasons why the bill should be rejected, which apparently includes that "children need the opportunity to have both a mother and a father," and says that adoption is not a gay rights issue, but should concern only the interests of the child. Which I suppose has much more to do with good modeling for gender roles than with skill or ability in parenting.

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Ask Men survey gives us hope, defies beer ad stereotypes…mostly (via Em & Lo)

Posted: August 7th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on Ask Men survey gives us hope, defies beer ad stereotypes…mostly (via Em & Lo)

According to a new online survey conducted by AskMen.com, Cosmopolitan's sister magazine, 68,000 out of 100,000 men would take a male birth control pill if one became available. That's 68%, which is surprisingly high. And that's encouraging, precisely because the audience of the unscientific online survey are the male counterparts of Cosmopolitan stereotypes: vacuously-minded and viagra-enthralled masculinity.

Em & Lo, who noted the survey results, said they "are pleased to report that our worst fears were not realized." Figleaf, who picked up the story, said, "for this answer on this survey, I think [the Ask Men audience is] actually a bonus rather than a liability. […] Ordinarily that’s precisely the demographic skeptics point to while claiming that R&D on male contraceptives is a waste of time." And y'know, we gotta agree with 'em both.

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Reporter’s Sex-Trafficking Questions Silences Craigslist Founder – Tech Talk – CBS News

Posted: August 6th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Reporter’s Sex-Trafficking Questions Silences Craigslist Founder – Tech Talk – CBS News

Craig Newmark, "the Craig from Craigslist," was "ambushed" by CNN's Amber Lyon for a slam piece about sex trafficking, Charles Cooper reports. "When the reporter…first approached him with a question about screening out ads for sex with minors, Newmark told her that the company had explained all that on its corporate blog. … After a cutaway with a Detective, Lyon returned to the attack." In Lyon's CNN report, he asks her "Have you reported this to us?" She replies, "Why do I have the responsibility to report this to you when it's your website? You're the one posting this online." Newmark then walked away. In an emailed statement, a Craigslist spokesperson wrote Lyon's interview "was a direct violation of the Society of Professional Journalists code of ethics."

Sex trafficking is a loaded issue, and conflations between it and sex work are dangerous for victims and society alike.

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KTAR.com – AZ gay marriage ban in trouble?

Posted: August 6th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on KTAR.com – AZ gay marriage ban in trouble?

Following the victory against "Proposition Hate" in California, conservatives across America are preparing to defend local challenges to their home State's bigoted bans on same-sex marriage. In Arizona, where a similar law bans gay men and lesbians from marrying their partners, GLBT activists marched to the federal courthouse in downtown Phoenix in celebration, hopeful that "the beginning of the end to discrimination" is near. "While I find marriage equality incredibly important, I think there are a lot of other issues equally important to our community," marcher Pam Weir said. "But, marriage is something that's easily accessible by the entire nation that will pave the way for all of our other rights to come through."

Lawyers at the Alliance Defense Fund, a conservative law firm, say overturning Prop 8 "jeapardizes the democratic process." In reality, it's a victory against tyranny of the majority. (Watch source video from 1:52 for local report.)

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Google and Verizon Near Deal on Web Pay Tiers – NYTimes.com

Posted: August 6th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on Google and Verizon Near Deal on Web Pay Tiers – NYTimes.com

When big companies and government agencies have "secret meetings," their spokespeople always say the interests of the consumer is at heart. But consumer advocate groups rightfully point out that such closed-door decision-making leaves too many stakeholders—like you and me—out of the discussions. That's what's been happening between Google and Verizon for 10 months, as they near a deal that could spell disaster for net neutrality, the sacred Internet tenet that demands all content on the network be delivered to the end-user with equal reliability. In other words: no favoritism, no censorship.

"The fate of the Internet is too large a matter to be decided by negotiations involving two companies," Gigi B. Sohn, founder of consumer advocacy group Public Knowledge, said. While business analysts say the deal "could eventually lead to higher charges for Internet users," Edward Wyatt reports, I'm far more concerned about the foothold such policies give to legislating sexual content—like us.

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Update: Friend of the show Nikolas points us to Google’s PR team who deny a deal is near approval. According to Google CEO Eric Schmidt, “I want to make sure that everybody understands what we mean about it. What we mean is that if you have one data type, like video, you don’t discriminate against one person’s video in favor of another. It’s OK to discriminate across different types…. There is general agreement with Verizon and Google on this issue. The issues of wireless versus wireline get very messy…and that’s really an FCC issue not a Google issue.”


ACRJ Blog: Guns N Genitals

Posted: August 6th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on ACRJ Blog: Guns N Genitals

Lisa Russ knows more about the National Rifle Association that you might expect of a writer at a reproductive justice blog, but she makes a brilliant comparison between the treatment of guns and genitals by folks in many parts of the United States. Gun rights, she reminds us, tend to be held most dear in the same states that are most likely to throw comprehensive sex education out the window in favor of the abstinence only variety. But the NRA has it's very own gun safety course, which teaches kids that guns are neither good nor bad, but a fact of life that they should learn to handle responsibly. Lisa wonders (and we wonder with her) – what's the difference between guns and genitals?

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Judge strikes down Prop. 8, allows gay marriage in California – latimes.com

Posted: August 4th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

“Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights to gay men and lesbians,” Judge Vaughn Walker wrote in his decision overturning Proposition 8, the controversial ban on same-sex marriage in California. He concluded that the measure, approved with voter ballot by a slim margin of 52.3%, “fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license. Indeed, the evidence shows Proposition 8 does nothing more than enshrine in the California Constitution the notion that opposite-sex couples are superior to same-sex couples. … Because Proposition 8 prevents California from fulfilling its constitutional obligation to provide marriages on an equal basis, the court concludes that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional.”

Supports of “Proposition Hate” repeatedly used “think of the children”-style arguments in testimony at the 2 and a half week trial.

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