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March 27, 2009


During a video taped interview with 365gay.com (see full interview below), openly gay Representative Barney Frank referred to Justice Antonin Scalia as "that homophobe" in response to a question about the Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA).

Frank was discussing gay marriage and his expectation that the high court would some day be called upon to decide whether the Constitution allows the federal government to deny recognition to same-sex marriages. He commented, "I wouldn't want it to go to the United States Supreme Court now because that homophobe Antonin Scalia has too many votes on this current court.

In his posting at The Hill's Congress Blog, Frank said:

"While responding to questions from journalists about my characterization of Justice Antonin Scalia as a homophobe, I realized that the fact that I made that comment in conjunction with a potential lawsuit about the Defense of Marriage Act created some confusion as to my basis for that characterization.

My view that Justice Scalia is prejudiced against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people is based, not on his position on marriage, but entirely on the angry minority opinions he wrote in two Supreme Court cases in which the majority held that gay and lesbian people had certain rights against discrimination regarding private consensual sex and political activity. In those two virulent dissents, Justice Scalia denounced the court majorities not simply for finding that it was unconstitutional to discriminate based on sexual orientation in cases involving political rights and the right to private consensual sex, but he also made it clear that in his view sex discrimination is not only permitted by the Constitution but is very much in society’s interest because homosexuality deserves to be treated with not only disapproval, but legal disability.

This comes out most clearly in his very vigorous abjection to the court’s decision to block a criminal prosecution against two men who had consensual sex in the privacy of their bedroom. And it is made very vivid in the passage in which he affirms society’s right to treat homosexuals unequally by citing other categories which deserves such treatment — beginning with murder."

The actual written, astoundingly homophobic, comments made by Scalia in those cases is, to say the least, very disturbing. You can read the full text of Scalia's opinions at the Congress Blog. They're at the end of Barney's comments.

If this man (and I use that term very loosely) doesn't recuse himself from future cases involving any GLBT issue, there is something fundamentally wrong with our Supreme Court Structure.

Below is Barney Frank's full interview with 365gay.com.

March 26, 2009


Republican Governor James Douglas said just a couple of days ago that he "wouldn't sign" the gay marriage bill, leaving the door open for it to become law without his signature.

Yesterday however, Governor Douglas made a very public statement saying that if the bill does reach his desk, he would not sign it. This in spite of the fact that it received an overwhelming majority vote of 26-4 in the State Senate.

According to WCAX TV news, Douglas went on to reiterate the same flawed argument he's used before:

"I believe marriage has always been and ought to remain the union of a man and a woman. I believe the civil unions law has offered equal rights and benefits under state law to same-sex couples and that should suffice."

As I pointed out in my original March 13th story, contrary to Douglas' statement, in the nine years since civil unions were approved, there have been numerous and persistent problems with businesses, hospitals and even government agencies recognizing the legality of those unions.

To further dilute Douglas' logic, the 182 clergy members who came out in support of the bill said in their March 12th statement:

We recognize that a separate system that legally recognizes same-gender couples creates a harmful stigma for those we support and love in our community. Although civil union protections have remedied some of the financial and legal inequities, the denial to participate in the status of civil marriage is a social injustice that fractures our communities, harms those we love and sends a message of government sanctioned discrimination."

Despite the governor's opposition, this bill is not dead yet. Over the next week it will be debated in the house and a vote there will determine whether or not there are enough votes in both houses to override Douglas' veto. The senate's vote has already shown that the needed 2/3 majority is clearly present there. The house however is not a done deal yet. Which is probably why Douglas came out with his statement much earlier than he usually would have. Obviously he's trying to influence the house vote.

However, in a very curious, if not schizophrenic statement, WCAX TV reported that Governor Douglas also said:

...he thinks Democratic leaders would not have advanced the bill if they did not have enough votes to override a veto, but because the issue is so personal and divisive legislative leaders say there's no guarantee. But of course Douglas acknowledged he will have no choice but to accept same-sex marriages if the house can get the numbers.

Does this mean that the governor is simply playing politics to placate his voter base but really wants to see this bill passed? I hope that's the case. More importantly, with all the strong support this bill has gotten outside of the political arena, I hope that enough house representatives see it that way too and go ahead and pass the bill with more than a 2/3 majority.

Obviously, the success or failure of this bill now rests entirely in the state's House of Representatives.

Of course, I'll keep you posted. I need to go take an aspirin now.

March 25, 2009


Last year, the Gainesville, Florida city commission revised their antidiscrimination law to include protections for transgender people in employment, housing, and public accommodations.

A vigorous and fervent repeal effort was launched almost immediately. The opponents, our favorite right wing-nut fanatics, thought they saw their chance to repeal not only that addition to the antidiscrimination bill already in place, but to also eliminate the existing protections for all gays and lesbians.

The standard litany of lies that the so-called "religious" supporters always roll out when trying to scare the bejesus out of what they think is an ignorant and unknowing public was expanded this time by throwing in the imagery of "mixed sex" public bathrooms. That scare tactic was strong enough for them to garner the needed signatures to put Charter Amendment 1 on the ballot. That success, no doubt, bolstered their confidence and probably prompted rosy dreams about how they were going to, once and for all, stomp down those pesky little faggots.

Well, to their crushing chagrin, they awoke this morning to find that yesterday's vote not only deflated their hopes and dreams but did so in a very convincing manner. Charter Amendment 1 went down in flames by a vote of 42% to 58%!

It's reassuring to see that not all of the GLBT news coming out of Florida lately is negative.

Major kudos to all the rational, fair-minded people of Gainesville who voted down this measure so resoundingly. Thank you.

March 23, 2009


Lt. Dan Choi is an active duty member of the United States Army, a graduate of West Point, a NY National Guard platoon leader, an Iraq veteran, and an Arab linguist. He and 38 other West Point graduates risked their careers by coming out publicly and forming an organization they call Knights Out.

According to The Advocate, Knights Out is intended to be a support group offering help to their alma mater to educate future Army leaders on the need to accept and honor the sacrifices of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender troops. Their goal is to form a connection between gay troops and Army administrators to provide an “open forum” for communication between gay West Point graduates and their fellow alumni. They would also like to serve in an advisory role to West Point leaders when the disastrous "don't ask, don't tell" policy is repealed.

Knights Out joins two other similar groups formed by graduates of the U.S. Naval and Air Force academies - the U.S. Naval Academy’s USNA Out and the U.S. Air Force Academy’s Blue Alliance.

Below is an interview Lt. Choi gave to Dr. Rachel Maddow on MSNBC last week.

It will be interesting to see whether or not the military pursues discharges for these courageous service men. Considering how badly the more than 12,500 discharges under DADT have already hurt the military's readiness and the fact that President Obama is actively working with the pentagon to end DADT, I would hope that NO ONE ELSE will be added to that discharge list.

Thanks also to Lez Get Real for their article and the video.

Portia De Rossi Apologizes For Marrying Ellen DeGeneres...
The following video is currently running on YouTube and has cumulatively received more than 50,000 hits so far. It's hilarious! Thanks Portia. Enjoy...