Posts Tagged ‘rights’

Zimbabwe Pres: “Gays Are Lower Than Pigs”

Zimbabwe – President Robert Mugabe is heading up a massive project to re-write the country’s constitution and says, “Absolutely

Zimbabwe President Mugabe says "Gays are lower than pigs"

 Not!” to calls for LGBT protections.

The new constitution is part of a power-share deal the country has made, and western human-rights advocates are strongly making their feelings known in the African Country. But President Mugabe isn’t bending, “Gays are lower than pigs” and says all calls for lgbt rights are “insanity.”

Interesting how most of Africa is strongly anti-LGBT rights, with the exception of South Africa, which was once known as one of the strongest prejudicial and bigoted countries in the world. Currently however, South Africa is the only country in Africa which has adopted full same-sex rights and marriage.

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Bigots Film Transgender Bathroom-Goers

Massachusettes – A bigot hate group calling itself “MassResistance” snuck into the Peabody Marriot Hotel this past week while the annual “First Event” transgender conference was taking place. With the purpose of “exposing the horror” of transgender men and women using the restrooms. Joe.My.God posted copy from this hate group’s statements:

Transgender madness in Massachusetts: The Peabody Marriott Hotel hosted the annual “First Event” transgender conference on January 15-17, 2009. These photos and videos illustrate the insanity that will descend on all of America . . . unless this sexual radical movement is stopped: Seven-foot men in dresses using the women’s restroom. Hundreds of cross-dressers swarming the hotel, upsetting other guests (who were not forewarned). A transgender rock concert. This is what protecting “gender identity and expression” really means. Mass. Bill H1728 (now before the Legislature) would punish any opposition to such madness with fines and jail time. Even schools would be opened up to cross-dressing children, transgender restrooms and locker rooms, and sports teams. Employers would be subject to new non-discrimination regulations. (At the federal level, ENDA would force this on the country if passed.)

I see this as bigotry at it’s lowest form. Those who make up the “T” in our community are most often those of us who have it hardest in life. Transgender men and women are least likely to be employed, have adequate housing and even those lucky enough to have jobs on average make under $25000 a year. And even though it’s rarely mentioned, I think we’re all aware that people who are Transgender sit at the bottom of the LGBT pile. It needs to change.

MassResistance belongs in a hole.

“Final Solution” For Gays – Group takes credit

The now infamous “Patriots For A Moral Utah” group played one of the most elaborate hoaxes on Utah the state has ever seen. Claiming to be the new America Forever or Eagle Forum, the group announced a citizen’s initiative which would require LGBT residents to either enter therapy and convert to heterosexuality or by loaded onto a train and be shipped off to San Francisco.

Backing the group up was an incredibly thourough and well-laid out bill, adding to the plausibility of the initiative. The story was picked up by Joe.My.God and the entire nation seemed to go crazy on it for a day. That in itself I think makes the satire a success, as it got people to stand up and do something, even if just for a day. What makes this story so scary is that even though they paralleled the 3rd Reich, it was still believable! Everyone still thought it could happen.

Today the group launched their website, utahfairsolution.com. The site continues the farce, but the activists also included a personal message on one of the pages outlining their full intent and reasons of why they chose to go on such a creative route. You know.. I say bravo. Well done for standing up and doing something that got people talking, even if it was a little unorthodox!

NOM Doesn’t Care Judge Is Gay, But It’s Wrong

NOM's infamously bigoted commercial "Storm Coming"

In an update to Sunday’s story about Prop 8 Trial Judge Vaughn Walker being gay, NOM  (people from the “storm is coming” commercial) has released a statement that it doesn’t matter he’s gay.. he’s just incredibly biased.

While both official sides in the Prop 8 Trial case are both claiming that they don’t care about the orientation of Judge Walker and that it has not impacted the case, the far right asshats are flying in with their nonsensical rhetoric. NOM (LDS Inc. controlled National Organization for Marriage) released a statement saying, “We have no idea whether the report [of Walker’s orientation] is true or not. But we do know one really big important fact about Judge Walker: He’s been an amazingly biased and one-sided force throughout this trial, far more akin to an activist than a neutral referee. That’s no secret at all”

Queerty has some opinions on that, saying “..this move is true to form for the National Organization for Marriage.. It’s the “smiling bigot” phenomenon, where religious beliefs are slyly substituted for important secular responsibilities like “family and children,” hoping nobody notices. It’s imperative for NOM, and the defendants in Perry, to put distance between their goal (banning gay marriage) and their reasoning for it (it goes against religious teachings), because courts regularly shoot down arguments tied to the cross. And Brown’s statement repeats NOM’s earlier positions: They don’t have anything wrong with gay people, they just don’t want them screwing with their sacred institution.”

Of course these days anything NOM says is almost inconsequential as they’re under federal investigation for their ties to the Mormon Church and their direct and illegal involvement in the passage of Maine’s Anti-Gay Marriage law in 2009.

BYU Mormon Prof Says Gay Couples Inadequate To Raise Children

SLC – Last week the University of Utah hosted a debate on LGBT Rights And Family Law. But what started as a healthy conversation quickly set many teeth in the audience grinding as BYU Professor Lynn Wardle attacked Gays, Gay Families and Women in general.

UofU Professor Cliff Rosky

The debate was sponsored by the UofU club the “Outlaws,” and featured Professor Cliff Rosky (University of Utah law professor and board member of Equality Utah) and Professor Lynn Wardle (BYU Professor and Co-Author of Utah’s Amendment 3). The two started things off amiably, both stressing that they wanted this to be a “conversation” rather than a debate. However the tension in the room built almost immediately as Lynn Wardle mentioned in his opening remarks that “Traditional Marriage is the same across all cultures and times.”

Funny, but I seem to recall every history book telling me different, but who am I to argue?

Professor Wardle also showed a rather glaring lack of knowledge on the subject when he spoke of civil unions as being equivalent to marriage, despite the overwhelming evidence of the 1100+ rights that are given to married couples but denied to partners living with civil unions.

The evening really took a downturn from there, as Wardle made veiled (barely) comparisons between gay relationships and incest. “Strong morality usually comes from a traditional family,” Wardle says, “Is it possible to have a strong incestuous family, is it possible to have a strong polyamorous family or a strong same-sex family? Yes, but it’s not likely.” Lynn surmises that gay couples cannot have the strength of commitment or love for one another as a

BYU Professor Lynn Wardle

heterosexual couple, and therefore cannot have a strong family.

Rosky pushed Wardle on the issue, asking why gay couples cannot have as strong a family as straight couples? Wardle replied that there are inherant traits to women and men in families, and only a man and a woman can fulfill those traits. Almost every female in the room gasped (remember most in the audience are law students) as they listened to a BYU professor tell them that the 1800’s gender roles should still be in place.

Yeah…. don’t think I’ll be rooting for BYU anytime soon.

Ben McAdams Fights For Wrongful Death Rights In 2010

After Senator Scott McCoy retired from the Utah State Senate a month ago, the question has been constant in Utah’s LGBT community: Will Ben McAdams live up to his pledge to support us? Looks like he’s making good!

"I want to raise my children in a society where everyone is treated equally under the law"

This weekend, Senator-elect Ben McAdams called us at PRIDE In Utah with the news that he will be spear-heading a Wrongful Death bill this session. Many may remember that this was Senator McCoy’s bill last year, but it was shot down in committee.

So does this bill have a chance this year where it failed last time? “It’s never passed before, but I’m hopeful in this climate it could pass,” said Ben, speaking of not only the LDS Church’s recent support of the Salt Lake City Non-Discrimination ordinances, but the nation-wide push to recognize American LGBT citizens as equal to everyone else.

So what exactly would this bill do? “Well currently,” said Ben, “if my wife died because a drunk truck driver hit her and killed her, I could sue the negligent driver for wrongful death and get compensation, because we’re inter-dependent. But a same-sex couple or any other inter-dependent but unmarried adults wouldn’t be able to make that claim. The genius of this bill is that it’s not just about same-sex partners, but all inter-dependent adults like mothers and daughters living together.”

This bill could have a major impact on Utah LGBT citizens, is this something Ben is taking seriously? Or is this just positioning for his LGBT constituents? “This bill is my priority,” he says, “[and] I’m running with the intent to pass it.” The wrongful death bill is sure to run into opposition in the legislature, but McAdams doesn’t seem to be too worried, “This is something the republicans can afford to support, both ethically and politically,” he says with a small laugh, “it’s a good bill.”

So what does this mean personally for Ben McAdams, why is he making this his priority? “Well I think we’ve got to keep the dialogue going at the legislature, this [Wrongful Death] bill highlights that there are many responses the legislature has given that these things can be accomplished in contract. But how often do people go out and do the contract? How often are people going to have what they need in place for an emergency? My wife and I are both attorneys and we haven’t even had a contract put together. So there’s a need to change the law. But it’s more than that,  a wrongful death is different than hospital visitation, in that there’s no way to contract for it.”

The Utah Legislature constantly claims that because people can contract for rights like hospital visitation there is no need for putting laws in place to protect Utah citizens. But the arguments hold little weight, as it’s fairly commonplace for partners to be denied the rights even if they do manage to put a contract in place.

“There are needs that need to be met for financially interdependent adults,” Ben says, “I think equality is personal, if Julie (Ben’s wife) and I are entitled to it, then I want to raise my children in a society where everyone is treated equally under the law.”

I cannot say how thrilled I am to have Ben McAdams on our side!

UT State Representative Christine Johnson Surrogate Mom To Gay Couple

Representative Christine Johnson has chosen to act as surrogate to a local gay couple.

So many many heart-felt congratulations and well-wishes to my amazing State Representative Christine Johnson for her amazing decision to act as a surrogate mother for a local gay couple.

According to the Deseret News, Ms. Johnson, one of only two openly gay people in the state legislature, is now in her 2nd trimester and decided last spring to act as surrogate for two male friends of hers who were married in California during the brief period pre-Prop 8 when it was legal.

There have been several stories about this already, I just want to again offer my congratulations to Christine Johnson and the two new soon-to-be-Dads!