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CBC News – Windsor – Craigslist prostitution ads must go: Ontario

Posted: October 20th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off on CBC News – Windsor – Craigslist prostitution ads must go: Ontario

Following in the footsteps of an anti-Craigslist, anti-justice dogpile of 17 US Attorneys General, three Ontario cabinet ministers signed a letter to Craigslist CEO Jim Buckmaster asking him to remove prostitution-related ads from the website in their province. According to a report by CBC News, "The New Democrats said prostitution and human trafficking were serious problems and Craigslist should quickly remove its prostitution-related ads under its erotic services section." In the letter, ministers cited "a simple matter of fairness" for why they want to see the Craigslist section for adult ads censored.

The letter comes on the heels of a recent Ontario court ruling (criticized by anti-prostitution & pro-censorship groups) that found laws against communication for the purpose of prostitution, which Craigslist is a remarkably safe facilitator for, violate Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

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13-year-old girl raped & impregnated in Peru, attempts suicide, and is still denied abortion

Posted: October 20th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off on 13-year-old girl raped & impregnated in Peru, attempts suicide, and is still denied abortion

In Peru, a country with one of the most strict anti-choice laws in the world, 13-year old L.C. was raped and impregnated by a man close to her family. "She realizes she’s pregnant, climbs to the roof of a local building, and jumps," Melanie Abrahams writes, retelling the horrific story. But it gets worse, "The fall doesn’t kill [L.C.], but leaves her with a paralyzing spinal injury. Doctors say an operation could restore her ability to walk, but upon realizing she’s pregnant, they insist they cannot help as the procedure could endanger the fetus."

Perhaps unsurprisingly, L.C. eventually miscarries. Now that an abortion isn't required, doctors operate, but months of delay leave L.C. without the ability to walk, no bowel control and minimal use of her arms. "They fear something else: the stigma," Dr. Luis Távara, President of the National Commission for Ob-Gyn Certification, said of the doctors, "professional stigma, social stigma, or familial stigma [for providing abortion service]."

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Official: vb.ly Link Shortener Seized by Libyan Government | techyum ::

Posted: October 6th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Violet Blue's link shortening service, vb.ly, was officially seized by the Libyan government recently for violation of Islamic Sharia law. "The photograph of me with my bare arms, holding a bottle, and the words 'sex-positive' were cited as obscene, offensive and illegal," Violet writes. She correctly states that "all .ly domains, and the businesses built on them internationally, should be on high alert."

This is yet another blatant attack on sexual freedom that undermines not only free speech but the fabric of the supposedly World Wide Web. However, it also highlights the well-known fragility of the Internet, and the social media landscape, with regards to sexuality. While I made use of vb.ly, I've long had doubts about the usefulness of ghettoizing sexuality with specially-branded services. Rather than build easily censorable hubs, sex-positive activists should be using non-sexuality-specific services to spread information.

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"It’s a good day," sex workers say in wake of Ontario court decision – Latest News Roundup

Posted: September 28th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Candian sex workers won a victory against anti-prostitution laws in Ontario today as provincial court struck down a number of key provisions in "Section 213(1)(c), which makes it illegal to communicate for the purposes of prostitution; Section 210, which makes it illegal to run a common bawdy house; and Section 212(1)(j), which makes it illegal to live off the avails of prostitution," according to a report at Xtra.ca.

Sex worker rights activists said they were pleased because the laws made it illegal for them to work indoors where they are safer. "While prostitution in itself is not illegal, just about everything related to it is illegal," Stacey Ashley notes in a report at CTV Winnipeg. While the government is "seriously considering" an appeal, Sex Professionals of Canada, plaintiffs in the case, said they would fight the appeal, and would start raising funds.

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10 Terrified States Want Gay Marriage Ban to Stand in California – Los Angeles News – The Informer

Posted: September 27th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on 10 Terrified States Want Gay Marriage Ban to Stand in California – Los Angeles News – The Informer

Anti-gay lawyers have their heads so far up their asses they're unable to produce substantive arguments against GLBT rights. Either unwilling or unable to acknowledge that homophobia is a losing trial strategy, attorneys general from 10 States including Wyoming, Florida, and Michigan filed an amicus brief in favor of upholding California's Prop 8 despite an earlier ruling declaring it unconstitutional.

As Patrick Range McDonald observes, among the knuckle-headed officials' arguments is tired old rhetoric linking same-sex marriage with bestiality: "If public affirmation of anyone and everyone's personal love and commitment is the single purpose of marriage, a limitless number of rights claims could be set up that evacuate the term marriage of any meaning." To anyone with half a brain, this kind of argument should be as silly as it is offensive.

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On Faith Panelists Blog: The lady doth protest too much – Debra W. Haffner

Posted: September 22nd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on On Faith Panelists Blog: The lady doth protest too much – Debra W. Haffner

"It doesn't surprise me to see attempts to control people's sexual lives emerge in Tea Party candidates' platforms," Debra Haffner writes at the Washington Post. Issues of sexual freedom have long been a cash cow for social conservatives. "I predict we will see more Tea Party candidates start playing into some conservatives' anxieties about all things sexual in the coming year."

So what are these sexual anxieties? Christine O'Donnell has the full package: "In a 1996 interview, she spoke out in an MTV documentary against masturbation, wrongly stating that the New Testament is against it. […] In 2002, she said that 'condoms will not protect you from AIDS.' In a 2006 interview, she said that homosexuals suffer from an identity disorder. A few weeks ago, she said that she opposes abortion except if the woman is going to die, in which case her family should decide which life to save."

That's what we call really, really big government.

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