90 posts categorized "Action Alerts"

August 16, 2014

Nov. 20 - Transgender Day of Remembrance

TDOR_poster_2014

Save the Date: Transgender Day of Remembrance 2014 takes place Thursday, November 20th.

(Hat tip: David Mariner)

June 02, 2014

Protest as anti-gay Uganda minister heads for human rights top job

Secretary-Generalmeeting--011
(UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe/SG's Office)

The Guardian reports:

The United Nations is facing a chorus of criticism over the inauguration as president of its general assembly of Uganda's foreign minister, just four months after that country enforced a brutal and widely denounced anti-gay law.

Sam Kutesa will become ceremonial head of the world parliament on 11 June. There will be no ballots cast and he will be "elected by acclamation", as he is the only candidate for the 12-month post, having been chosen by t he African Union for the job that falls this year to Africa on a Buggins' turn basis.

But as the appointment nears, questions are being asked about his track record of alleged corruption, as well as his role as cabinet member of a government that has enacted one of the most virulent homophobic laws on the globe. Voices of disapproval have spread from Uganda to the general assembly's home in New York and to the US senate.

Sign the Change.org petition against Sam Kutesa.

November 19, 2013

November 20, 22 - Transgender Day of Remembrance and Day of Action

Transgender_Day_of_Remembrance_Jessica_Xavier_insert_c_Washington_Blade_by_Michael_Key
(Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

The Transgender Day of Remembrance will be observed in D.C. in a service on Wednesday, November 20 at the Metropolitan Community Church at 474 Ridge Street, NW, from 6-9 pm. For more info, call 202-638-7373.

Also, Casa Ruby will host a Transgender Day of Action on Friday, November 22 from 6-9 pm at The Next Step Charter School, 3047 15th St. NW. For more info, email corado@casaruby.org.

Metro Weekly writes about the 2013 TDOR:

Transgender activist Earline Budd, one of the chief organizers of the event, says several musical groups, including the Gay Men's Chorus of Washington's a cappella group Potomac Fever, gospel singer Shirley Hughes and Company, and the AGAPE choir of Unity Fellowship Church, will participate in the three-hour service.

Organizers have also confirmed that Mayor Vincent Gray (D) and D.C. Fire Chief Ken Ellerbe will also attend, as will Alvin Bethea and Judean Jones, the parents of Deoni Jones, a young transgender woman killed while waiting at a Northeast D.C. bus stop in February 2012. The service will make special mention of the JaParker Deoni Jones Birth Certificate Equality Amendment Act, which was signed into law by Gray, and will honor the D.C. Council and advocates who helped to pass the law providing residents more control over their official documents with regard to gender identity.

The TDOR website states:

The Transgender Day of Remembrance serves several purposes. It raises public awareness of hate crimes against transgender people, an action that current media doesn't perform. Day of Remembrance publicly mourns and honors the lives of our brothers and sisters who might otherwise be forgotten. Through the vigil, we express love and respect for our people in the face of national indifference and hatred. Day of Remembrance reminds non-transgender people that we are their sons, daughters, parents, friends and lovers. Day of Remembrance gives our allies a chance to step forward with us and stand in vigil, memorializing those of us who've died by anti-transgender violence.

I note that the above-referenced birth certificate equality law has taken effect after completing its congressional review period. So there will be something to celebrate this year, in addition to mourning those we have lost due to senseless hate and violence, and committing to continuing the struggle for justice and a city that values all its people.

August 19, 2013

August 24 - 50th Anniversary March on Washington

MOW-celebrities

50 years ago, famous attendees at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom included Charlton Heston, James Baldwin, Marlon Brando, Harry Belafonte, and (in the background) Sidney Poitier.

Please join us on Saturday, August 24th for the 50th anniversary march. Civil rights are under renewed attack from the nativist right, and we must organize to defeat those efforts to turn back the clock. RSVP here: http://www.naacp.org/march.

March 28, 2013

March 30 - Rally for Trans Health Equality and Economic Justice

Rally_for_Trans_Health

This just in:

Rally for Trans Health Equality and Economic Justice
Date: March 30, 2013
Time: 4pm

Columbia Heights Civic Plaza Circle (14th and Park NW).

For more information contact:
Nico Quintana nicoquintana1 at gmail.com

For the first time, LGBT equality groups and labor unions folks are working together to advance access to basic health care for transgender people, and to expand health care insurance to cover trans-related health care nationwide. The March 30th Rally for Trans Equality and Economic Justice will bring together local trans communities, activists, union members and leaders to celebrate our victories and to continue to build momentum and power to fight for trans equality, trans economic justice and equal access to quality jobs, health care and housing for DC trans residents. Speakers will include local activists, labor leaders, artists, and poets.

Rally message: We want full coverage of all transgender health needs across all insurance policies –public and private in dc now.

Organized by: DC Trans Coalition, The National Transgender Month of Action 2013: Trans Health Care Access, SEIU, Pride at Work, DC trans organizers

January 18, 2013

Jan. 23-27 - Creating Change Conference

Kate Clinton talks about next week's Creating Change Conference, which marks the 40th anniversary of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.

November 30, 2012

Help fight the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill

Uganda Pride

Let us stand with these brave and beautiful people, and speak as loudly in support of them as poison merchants like Scott Lively have spoken against.

Click here (or on the picture above) to go to Amnesty International's action page and add your voice.

November 29, 2012

December 1 - Ugandan Embassy Protest

#Uganda is again pressing for laws for execution or life-time imprisonment of gay people.  The Light Brigade Maryland has scheduled a Light Party for December 1 at 7:00 at the Ugandan Embassy, 5911 16th Street NW.  This is not near a subway station but there is frequent bus service on 16th Street.  The group was inspired by Overpass Light Brigade in Wisconsin which advocated for the  recall of Gov. Scott Walker.  Volunteers hold lighted panels at dusk with their message.  

LightBrigade

November 27, 2012

Alert: D.C. hospitality venues need your support

DCHospitality_FB_MainPhotoArt_2

The folks at dchospitality.org have launched a sign-on petition to Mayor Gray and D.C. Council members urging them to reform unfair licensing laws. GLAA has long advocated reforms to curtail regulatory abuse, which includes rules that give an advantage to NIMBYs ("Not In My Back Yard" types) who game the system to thwart the wishes of their neighbors who appreciate having the livelier business and entertainment environment that city living affords.

Click here or on the graphic above to see more details and add your name to the petition.

November 21, 2012

Urge President Museveni to oppose Uganda's "Kill the Gays" bill

Uganda-anti-gay-bill-007
(Protestors outside Uganda House in London in 2011. Photo by Shaun Curry/AFP/Getty Images)

All Out issued an action alert urging people to sign a petition urging Uganda President Yoweri Museveni to veto that country's Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which has appeared on the parliamentary agenda.

InterPride condemns the bill. Metro Weekly quotes Frank Mugisha, executive director of Sexual Minorities Uganda:

This bill won’t stop us. We will continue to fight until we are free of this legislation. We cannot have oppression forever.

Please click on the All Out action alert link above and add your voice against intolerance.

August 08, 2012

Aug. 9 - WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED Rally and Safety Walk

GLAA endorses this event set for 7 pm on Thursday, August 9. Blade story here. The following is info on the event from organizer Nick McCoy, a 2010 GLAA Distinguished Service Award recipient:

I invite you to join members of the LGBT community and the residents of Shaw, Bloomingdale, and Eckington in saying no to violence and hatred on the streets of DC.

On July 22, two men were physically assaulted while exiting their vehicle in the 1900 block of 3rd Street NE. Their assailants shouted homophobic slurs before punching and kicking the victims.

More information about the assault is available at The Washington Post.

I live just a few blocks from the scene of this hate crime. Amy Loudermilk and I have been putting together this event, in coordination with the Eckington Civic Association President, and local ANC commissioners to maximize participation from the community.

Join us for a rally and safety walk through this neighborhood to make our message clear: "We shall not be moved."

Thursday, August 9
Meet at 7:00 PM at Big Bear Cafe
1700 1st Street NW (Intersection of 1st and R St NW)
Walking to 1900 3rd Street NE (3rd and T Street NE)

We will gather for a short rally outside 1st and R Street NW before the safety walk to the location of the incident. Instead of a moment of silence, we will have a "moment of noise." The march will then return to the starting point. Big Bear Cafe is located about 7 blocks east of the Shaw Metro station.

We will be joined by representatives from Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence (GLOV), the Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit of the Metropolitan Police Department, the DC Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Collective Action for Safe Spaces, the DC Office of LGBT Affairs, SMYAL, and the Critical Incident Team.

No one should have to walk in fear on the streets of DC because of hate. Whenever any community is targeted, we all have a duty to stand together.

Join us.

Sincerely,

Nick McCoy

Thanks to Nick, Amy Loudermilk and the other organizers. I will be there. Please join us.

May 23, 2012

AFA Action Alert! Target Supports Gay Families!

Target_pride

I happen to be on the email list of the right-wing American Family Association, which this morning sent me this dire alert:

Target donating its sales in support of gay marriage laws

May 23, 2012

Dear Richard,

Target has pledged $120,000 in cash to promote the legalization of homosexual marriage.

Target's website says it will donate 100% of T-shirt sales from customers during the month of June to Family Equality Council.

You can see Target's promise to homosexuals here (Target's actual webpage here).

Target is joining President Obama in ramming same-sex marriage down the throats of the American people.

TAKE ACTION

Send an email to Target Chairman Gregg Steinhafel. Let him know that a majority of Americans oppose same-sex marriage and are able to use their pocketbooks to voice their opposition to companies that support it.

You can also call Target's corporate office and share your personal thoughts. The number is 612-304-6073, option 6.

I just called and registered my appreciation for Target's support for the Family Equality Council. You may wish to do the same.

Incidentally, AFA's phrasing about ramming things down people's throats strikes me as being a tad over the top. I'm sure I speak for all of us when I say that we strongly believe in getting permission before doing any such thing, even with our spouses. I expect that AFA's alert writer is merely projecting, or is watching too much gay porn.

March 23, 2012

The next Bing Bomb? #glaad #cap

Rick Santorum has faced his "Google Problem" for quite a while now.  Well, a Nebraska blogger has pointed out the danger that the Corporate Accountability Project prersents of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation presents to the people listed.  If many blogs post a link to the site it will begin rising on search engines.  In fact, there is evidence this is already happening.  The right wing blogs are already complaining about this service of GLAAD. To those who have forgotten who is on the list it is below.  Sadly, unlike Dan Savage I cannot command my miniions to get busy on this.

Matt Barber - David Barton - Gary Bauer - Brian Brown - Michael Brown - Brian Camenker - Alan Chambers - Chuck Colson - Candi Cushman - Jim Daly - Bill Donohue - Bob Emrich - Lou Engle - Joseph Farah - Bryan Fischer - Maggie Gallagher - Jim Garlow - Robert George - Ken Hutcherson - Harry Jackson - Peter LaBarbera - Scott Lively - Kevin McCullough - Albert Mohler - Jennifer Roback Morse - Penny Nance - Tony Perkins - Christopher Plante - Rick Scarborough - Peter Sprigg - Glenn Stanton - Mat Staver - Frank Turek - Bob Vander Plaats - Don Wildmon - Tim Wildmon

For those who are a little less computer literate this would be the HTML to embed:


<a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/matt-barber">Matt Barber</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/david-barton">David Barton</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/gary-bauer">Gary Bauer</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/brian-brown">Brian Brown</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/michael-brown">Michael Brown</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/brian-camenker">Brian Camenker</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/alan-chambers">Alan Chambers</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/chuck-colson">Chuck Colson</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/candi-cushman">Candi Cushman</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/jim-daly">Jim Daly</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/bill-donohue">Bill Donohue</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/bob-emrich">Bob Emrich</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/lou-engle">Lou Engle</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/joseph-farah">Joseph Farah</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/bryan-fischer">Bryan Fischer</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/maggie-gallagher">Maggie Gallagher</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/jim-garlow">Jim Garlow</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/robert-george">Robert George</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/ken-hutcherson">Ken Hutcherson</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/harry-jackson">Harry Jackson</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/peter-labarbera">Peter LaBarbera</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/scott-lively">Scott Lively</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/kevin-mccullough">Kevin McCullough</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/albert-mohler">Albert Mohler</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/jennifer-roback-morse">Jennifer Roback Morse</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/penny-nance">Penny Nance</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/tony-perkins">Tony Perkins</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/christopher-plante">Christopher Plante</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/rick-scarborough">Rick Scarborough</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/peter-sprigg">Peter Sprigg</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/glenn-stanton">Glenn Stanton</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/mat-staver">Mat Staver</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/frank-turek">Frank Turek</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/bob-vander-plaats">Bob Vander Plaats</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/don-wildmon">Don Wildmon</a> - <a href="http://www.glaad.org/cap/tim-wildmon">Tim Wildmon</a>

(via Towleroad)

January 23, 2012

Please sign petition opposing Prostitution Free Zones

Friends,

As you may know, the D.C. Council's Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing tomorrow (Tuesday, Jan. 24) on Yvette Alexander's Bill 19-567 to allow the police chief to make so-called Prostitution Free Zones permanent. As I will testify on behalf of GLAA, those zones violate the U.S. Constitution and in any case do not solve problems associated with street prostitution, because such police tactics merely chase the activity to other streetcorners. And giving criminal records to people who are engaged in commercial sex in order to survive only makes it harder for them to escape the streets.

Our discussion of this issue in GLAA's "Agenda: 2012" is here. We will post our testimony for the Jan. 24 hearing on GLAA's website on that morning.

Our friends Darby Hickey and Sonya Mendoza have placed a petition on change.org and tumblr.com about PFZs. Please use one of these links to add your voice to ours.

http://nopfzs.tumblr.com/

https://www.change.org/petitions/council-member-vote-against-making-dcs-prostitution-free-zones-permanent

Thanks,

Rick Rosendall
Vice President for Political Affairs
Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance

November 03, 2011

Frank Kameny Memorial Viewing on Thursday, November 3, 2011

Press Inquiries Only
 Bob Witeck 202-997-4055
 bwiteck@witeckcombs.com
 
 Dr. Franklin E. Kameny
 Our Viewing and Last Respects on Thursday, November 3, 2011
 Councilmembers Catania and Graham to join Kameny pallbearers at 2:30 pm ET
 
 WHAT:
 
 Lying-in-State for Dr. Franklin E. Kameny
 
 WHO:
 
 All are welcome to visit and say goodbye to our fellow citizen, neighbor, friend, advocate and civil rights champion, Frank Kameny.
 
 This farewell viewing, to be held on November 3 to allow many friends to visit at their convenience, was made possible through the leadership of our Mayor, the Honorable Vincent Gray, and with the endorsement of Members of the D.C. Council, as well as many friends and allies of the late Dr. Kameny.
 Dr. Franklin E. Kameny Memorial Host Committee members are listed below.
 
 WHEN:
 
 Thursday, November 3, 2011 between 3 pm and 8 pm ET
 
 Note: This will not be a formal program or a funeral service conducted during this viewing period. However, informal remarks by Mayor Vincent Gray and several Members of the DC Council will take place between 6 and 7 pm ET.
 At approximately 2:30 pm, the hearse carrying Dr. Kameny will arrive at the venue and will be met by four designated pall bearers in U.S. military dress, and the remaining two pallbearers will be DC Council members David Catania and Jim Graham.
 
 WHERE:
 
 The first floor atrium of the historic Carnegie Library
 Between 7th and 9th Streets N.W. at Mt. Vernon Square
 Public entrance on K Street N.W.

More details on the second page

Continue reading "Frank Kameny Memorial Viewing on Thursday, November 3, 2011" »

October 11, 2011

Do you know what day it is?

 NationalComingOutDay

And science says people come out at a much earlier age.

August 22, 2011

Action alert: Uganda 'Kill gays' bill 'back within fortnight', reintroduction 'by stealth'

Yoweri-museveni-with-obamas

Paul Canning reports at LGBT Asylum News:

According to two journalist sources in Uganda, the infamous 'kill gays' bill will be revived in that nation's parliament "within two weeks". Other reports have said this will happen 'by stealth'.

The journalists spoke confidentially to a longstanding contact of LGBT Asylum News from a diplomatic background and with extensive Ugandan contacts.

The contact warned that both EU and American pressure on Uganda's leadership to stop the bill, including threats to foreign aid support in the Ugandan government's budget, will have to be quickly revived.

In this regard, a new project called OneFamilyOneVoice has been launched to fund and conduct intensive private lobbying of Ugandan officials to block the anti-gay bill, whose consequences will be catastrophic if passed. I attended a forum on the new project last week in Washington featuring Ugandan human rights activists and anti-Museveni ex-pats.

If you can contribute to the effort by OneFamilyOneVoice, click here.

(This project has been organized quickly due to the emergency situation, so I don’t have a lot of polished text to share; and the danger the Ugandan activists and insiders face is grave, so names are not being bandied about. But the project is being led by an experienced Ugandan activist who has been vouched for by colleagues here in Washington for whom I have a lot of trust and respect, so I have donated $75 to the effort. I met with the anti-Museveni ex-pats several months ago to discuss possible mutual efforts, and shared information on the coverage of the Ugandan situation by Box Turtle Bulletin. The fact is, if we wait for a polished organizational presentation by OneFamilyOneVoice before acting, it will likely be too late.)

Paul Canning offers additional stories on Uganda:

(Photo: the Musevenis with the Obamas)

Update: Uganda's Daily Monitor reports that Museveni's cabinet has thrown out the bill. I am not inclined to trust this. In any case, David Bahati, the bill's sponsor, insists that the bill now belongs to Parliament and is determined to go forward with it. Stay tuned.

LGBT Asylum News roundup

Gay-Impunes-35-crimenes-contra-gays-en-Honduras_imagen_full

Here are the latest international news items from Paul Canning at LGBT Asylum News:

(Photo from Honduras)

August 19, 2011

Freedom to Marry: Ask Senator Mikulski to cosponsor the Respect for Marriage Act

Babbs My old friend Adam DeBaugh, former Field Marshal (which is to say, Washington lobbyist) for the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches back in the 1970s, posted this link to Freedom to Marry's action alert asking Marylanders to urge Senator Barbara Mikulski to cosponsor the Respect for Marriage Act to repeal DOMA. We then had the following exchange:

Richard: Come out, come out, wherever you are.

Adam: Surely you don't mean me, Richard, after all these years! You must be talking about a certain allegedly closeted Senator.

Richard: Certainly not, Herr Field Marshal! I meant that she is a Munchkin.

Adam: You want the Senator to come out as vertically challenged?

Richard: I want her to meet Dorothy.

Anyway, be a good witch and click on the link to send Babs a (polite) message.

August 17, 2011

LGBT Asylum News roundup

Robert-seg002

Here are the latest international news items from Paul Canning at LGBT Asylum News:

(Photo of Robert Segwanyi)

July 20, 2011

International LGBT news roundup

Paul Canning at LGBT Asylum News shares these news items:

And check out this action alert from the National Immigrant Justice Center:

July 18, 2011

The great US Airways saggy pants arrest scandal

MarmanThumbnail Rashad Robinson at Color of Change just sent me this:

Dear Richard,

Should sagging pants get you kicked off a flight? Arrested? Jailed?

This is what 20 year-old University of New Mexico student Deshon Marman faced when he was taken off of a US Airways flight, arrested, shackled, and jailed after airline staff confronted him about his sagging pants. Marman, a San Francisco resident, had returned to California to attend his best friend's funeral.1

However you feel about sagging pants, it's clear that US Airways' response to Marman's clothing was inappropriate and discriminatory. Prosecutors have decided not to file charges against Marman — but leadership at US Airways is still defending the way their employees treated him.2

If US Airways gets away with this, it sets a dangerous precedent — we can't let it become acceptable for corporations to target and criminalize young Black men because of their appearance. Please join us in demanding that US Airways apologize to Deshon and his family and explain steps the company will take to ensure that nothing like this happens again. Just click the link below:

http://act.colorofchange.org/sign/usairways

When Marman was asked to pull up his pants by a US Airways ticket agent, he said he would comply once he reached his seat. Instead of that being the end of the discussion, the US Airways captain had him arrested and taken to jail.3

Continue reading "The great US Airways saggy pants arrest scandal" »

July 12, 2011

HRC petition calls on GOP presidential candidates to renounce reparative therapy

Paul Guequierre writes at HRC Back Story:

Last week Republican Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann demonstrated a dangerous level of extremism by signing her name to the far-right group the Family Leader’s pledge “The Marriage Vow: A Declaration of Dependence upon Marriage and Family.” Not surprisingly, Rick Santorum also signed the anti-LGBT pledge. Today, HRC is calling on the GOP candidates for President to disavow the dangerous “ex-gay” or “reparative therapies” endorsed by Michele Bachmann and her husband Marcus, a practicing, but unlicensed Minnesota psychologist whose clinic has been known to practice these therapies. Join us by signing our petition.

Michele Bachmann is obviously out of touch with mainstream America. Unfortunately her extremism rises to a dangerous level. Reparative therapy, the kind endorsed by Bachman, has been strongly denounced by leading medical organizations, including the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association. Both organizations have concluded that same-sex attraction is normal and attempts to change it could be harmful. Learn more about the lies and dangers of reparative therapy at www.hrc.org/reparativetherapy.

The in-fighting in the Republican Party is on the rise. The quackery pushed by the Bachmanns makes for a good wedge issue. Either more sane party members will stand up against the extremists, or they show themselves to be willing tools of the extremists.

June 20, 2011

June 25 - White House Rally For DC Democracy

This just in from DC Vote:

White House Rally For DC Democracy
Saturday, June 25 · 11:00am - 2:00pm

Location Lafayette Square
16th & H Street NW

Join DC Vote, DC Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, the National Urban League, the National Organization of Women, the Women's National Democratic Club, Alliance For Justice, the Anacostia Coordinating Council and others for this family-friendly rally.

We will call on President Obama to stand with the 600,000 residents of the District of Columbia who demand democracy, full equality and full citizenship.

The rally will feature local a...nd national advocacy and civil rights leaders, musical performances and crafty activities. Attendees are invited to picnic (but please note: no chairs allowed!)

* * *

Why a White House Rally now?

DC still faces very real threats to its local laws from "riders" that would override them. These riders will be attached to legislation that must pass and require bipartisan compromise - bills on the debt ceiling and the 2012 federal budget. DC riders were attached to the 2011 budget, and we expect more of the same in the weeks to come.

We must tell President Obama to stand up for DC and firmly state that local democracy in the District of Columbia is non-negotiable.

June 13, 2011

Today: Prop. 8 in court

This just in from AFER:

This morning at 9 a.m., AFER's attorneys will argue against an insidious motion to throw out the historic decision that ruled Prop. 8 unconstitutional.

Today's hearing comes the day after the 44th anniversary of the Loving v. Virginia decision, which said that every person has a constitutional right to marry.

AFER's staff will be providing live updates from the hearing on our website and Twitter. Find out more >
http://act.afer.org/site/R?i=uWOydL4eNSQWed7lWBcYGQ

The motion to throw out the decision is just one of the latest attacks by the other side to discredit the thorough trial that took place last year.

Anti-marriage forces would rather argue their case with slogans and electioneering that prey on the public's fears than defend discrimination in court, where facts and truth matter.

They are trying to throw out the Prop. 8 decision on blatantly homophobic grounds - and they are also trying to forever hide video of last year's public trial.

Over 20,000 people have called for the release of the Prop. 8 tapes. But we still need your help to spread the word.

http://act.afer.org/site/R?i=3oxBOAgdCacUeDC3GOAn3w

If you haven't yet, sign the open letter and be sure to encourage your friends and family to sign it as well via email, Facebook and Twitter.

Sign the open letter.

Share on Facebook.

Share on Twitter.

With your help and support, we will defeat this ridiculous motion to throw out the Prop. 8 ruling and we will achieve the freedom to marry for every American.

Sincerely,

Adam Umhoefer
Senior Project Director
American Foundation for Equal Rights

P.S. Be sure to watch Ted Olson and David Boies's special message commemorating the 44th anniversary of the Loving decision.
http://www.afer.org/loving/

May 09, 2011

May 11 - Demonstration for DC Home Rule

This just in from Ilir Zherka at DC Vote:

DC has turned up the heat on Congress this spring, and we've made an impact. Our friends are calling for more support of DC Home Rule in the Senate and the Obama Administration made a point of opposing H.R. 3 because it violates DC's rights.

We can't let up now. Join a demonstration across from the Capitol this Wednesday, May 11, to show our opponents and allies alike that we will not give up. DC residents must have equal rights to self-government and representation.

Will you join us? RSVP now, and tell your friends!

Here are the details:

Date: Wednesday, May 11
Time: 5:30 PM
Place: Upper Senate Park (200 New Jersey Ave NW)
Metro: Union Station - Red Line

Please also save the date for Saturday, June 25, when we will Saturday, June 25, when we will rally at the White House.

See you on Wednesday!

Sincerely,

Ilir Zherka
Executive Director

April 08, 2011

April 18 - No Taxation Rally - GetEQUAL DC

The filing deadline for 2011 individual tax returns is April 18th this year.  GetEQUAL DC has announced the No Taxation With Discrimination Rally!! End DOMA Now! to be held on that Monday.

Every year on Tax Day, legally married same-sex couples are denied the benefits of jointly filing taxes because of the hateful Defense of Marriage Act. Every year on Tax Day, we as a community are forced to (over)pay into a government that treats us and our friends as second class citizens. Every year on Tax Day, we have stayed silent as we face blatant... discrimination from elected officials chosen to serve us- NOT THIS YEAR!
Join GetEQUAL DC as we rally in solidarity with actions around the country to tell Speaker Boehner and the House of Representatives: NO TAXATION WITH DISCRIMINATION! END DOMA NOW!!! With the Respect for Marriage Act introduced in both the House and Senate, now is the time to start reminding our officials that we won’t stop, till we get EQUAL!
When: April 18th, 7:00 AM- TAX DAY! Come before work, and show your support
Where: E st and 2nd st NW, the 395-overpass
Why: Because we want EQUALITY!!
What to bring: Yourself, friends, a cup of caffeine, and a clever sign

Protestlocation This is a the location of the rally in Google street view  (click on the image for a larger size).  Thought the announcement doesn't explicitly say what is planned it is likely this event will be consist of hangng banners over the side of the overpass and waving signs at the cars as they drive by underneath.

While it appears likely that with a Tea Party dominated Republican party we won't have government anymore, you still need to file your taxes by that date.  Taking your money is an essential government operation.

Update:  The location of the rally has been corrected.  And obviously the government has not shut down.  It has been confirmed that no arrests are planned for this demonstration.  And lobbying Congress is planned for after the event.

March 23, 2011

Phelps clan plans protest outside Elizabeth Taylor's funeral; counter-protest planned

Our friend Ester Goldberg reports. The Facebook page is here. I expect the biggest and most fabulous counter-protest the Phelpses have ever seen. If you're out that way, join the effort and help sing Liz to heaven. The Phelps loonies may be too far gone to see how utterly wrong they are, but others will receive the message too.

March 16, 2011

George Takei on the Japanese earthquake and tsunami

(Hat tip: Joe Jervis)

Brazil Needs to Act Now to Stop LGBT Killing Spree

All Out writes:

Watch the video about Priscila, and sign the petition asking Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff to support the Anti-Homophobia bill. Footage courtesy of “Education Without Homophobia,” a project of NuhUFMG in Belo Horizonte.

Click on the link above to read and sign the petition.

(Hat tip: Michael Crawford)

March 14, 2011

Say "I Do," Mr. President

Our friends at Freedom to Marry have launched a letter campaign to urge President Obama to complete his self-described evolution on the issue of marriage equality. Click here to sign the letter.

February 25, 2011

Sign HRC's petition to Congress: Do not allow defense of DOMA

The Human Rights Campaign has launched a petition effort to urge members of Congress not to support efforts to have Congress intervene in defending the Defense of Marriage Act in court. Click here to read about it and sign the petition.

February 04, 2011

Helping Frank Kameny

Frank-Kameny

John Corvino writes at 365gay.com:

When Dr. Franklin Kameny was fired from his government job in 1957 for being gay, there was no national gay civil rights movement. It took pioneers like him to make it happen. Before pride parades, before Harvey Milk, before Stonewall, there was Frank....

The astronomer-turned-activist is now 85 and as spirited as ever. Thankfully, he has lived to see some of the fruits of his labor. In 2009, when President Obama signed a memorandum extending certain benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees, he handed his pen to Kameny....

To put it simply, Frank needs financial help. His modest Social Security check — his only income — is inadequate to cover his needs. An organization called Helping Our Brothers and Sisters (HOBS) has intervened on his behalf.

From their website http://www.helpingourbrothersandsisters.com/donate.html:

“HOBS has worked with Dr. Kameny for more than a year, insuring that his basic life needs are met.

“To honor our greatest living gay rights activist, HOBS provides Frank with taxi vouchers. We work to ensure that his utilities are paid (phone, electric, water). We have worked with many other fine organizations in coordinating his needs.

“We are in constant communication with DC Government Officials, attempting to make sure city services are available to Dr. Kameny. We also gathered the donations in 2010 to pay Frank’s real estate taxes, of $2,000+.”

All donations to HOBS this month go to Frank. Meanwhile, a Facebook page has launched in conjunction with this effort, entitled “Buy Frank a Drink.” The idea is not literally to buy him drinks, but to spare $10 (or whatever you can afford) for him.

Frank has worked tirelessly for decades to make our lives better. It is simply not right that he should spend his twilight years in financial need.

Please click on the above HOBS donation link to help this gay rights pioneer.

Transgender survey: discrimination "at every turn"

AP reports:

Many transgender Americans face intolerance in almost every aspect of their lives, contributing to high levels of homelessness, unemployment and despair, according to a comprehensive survey being released Friday.

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the National Center for Transgender Equality say their survey of 6,450 transgender people is the largest of its kind. It details discrimination encountered "at every turn" — in childhood homes, in schools and workplaces, at stores and hotels, at the hands of doctors, judges, landlords and police.

"Their lives are just a crapshoot," said Rea Carey, executive director of the task force. "They don't know from one interaction to the next whether they will be treated with respect and dignity. It's not the way people should be living their day-to-day life."

The report comes at a sobering time for transgender community.

While their gay-rights allies celebrated the recent Senate vote that will enable gays to serve openly in the military, transgender people were left out of the debate and remain barred from service.

Efforts to pass a federal law barring workplace discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation failed in the previous Democratic-controlled Congress — gender identity was a key stumbling block — and the new Republican-led House is considered more hostile.

Uncertain of prospects for progress at the federal level, activists hope to make headway through lawsuits, corporate diversity programs, local anti-bias ordinances, and public education efforts. They hope the survey will buttress those efforts; some of the data had been released in preliminary reports, but the final version contains new details and is prefaced by an emotional plea for Americans to rethink their attitudes.

Take the pledge to end anti-trans discrimination:
http://www.endtransdiscrimination.org/

January 27, 2011

February 3 - "Breakfast Without Bigotry" demo against the Family's promotion of gay-hating programs in Uganda

The murder of gay rights activist David Kato in Uganda (CNN news story above) highlights the importance of an upcoming demonstration here in Washington, D.C. Here are the details:

Date/Time:Thursday, February 3 · 6:00am - 8:00am
Location:On the Sidewalk Outside the Washington Hilton, 1919 Connecticut Ave., N.W.
Sponsor:GetEQUAL DC
Description:Join LGBTQ folks, people of good will and our religious leaders outside the National Prayer Breakfast as we expose "The Family" -- the secretive group hosting it -- and their dangerous, gay-hating programs in Uganda, the United States, and elsewhere, made possible by events such as this.

The Facebook event page is here.

Below is a Voice of America news story from January 2010 in which I was interviewed as a counter to the notorious David Bahati, who has been helped by "The Family."

January 06, 2011

Would You Buy Frank Kameny a Drink?

Kameny Rebecca Gross at We Love DC writes about the Facebook campaign launched by the group Helping Our Brothers and Sisters (HOBS) to help our colleague, 85-year-old gay rights pioneer Frank Kameny. It's not really about buying Frank a drink, it's about helping him financially.

The FB page for helping Frank is here.

January 04, 2011

January 21 - deadline on nominations for GLAA’s 2011 Distinguished Service Awards

Dsalynch Friends,

We invite you to submit nominations for GLAA’s annual Distinguished Service Awards, which will be presented at our 40th anniversary reception on April 20, 2011 (more details to come).

Please send us suggestions for individuals and/or groups that you feel have given distinguished service to Washington’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. This can be political, cultural, or charity work, professional or volunteer. GLAA’s officers will review all the suggested names and decide on this year’s honorees. Each year we find an embarrassment of riches. We ask that you email us your nominations (including a brief description of their service) no later than Friday, January 21.

A list of past GLAA honorees can be found at:
http://www.glaa.org/resources/awardshistory.shtml

Please email your suggestions to us at equal@glaa.org

Thanks!

Rick Rosendall
VP for Political Affairs
Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, DC

December 10, 2010

Tisinai: Send Rachel Maddow a message on Uganda bill

In this video, Rob Tisinai at BTB explains the terrible details of the Uganda "Kill the Gays" bill, which is still alive and may pass in the next few weeks. He wrote yesterday:

Rachel Maddow is continuing her coverage of Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill tonight. She’s done a great job of keeping the story in the public eye, but she’s still missing one thing:

The bill would kill gays and would kill their friends, family, or co-workers who didn’t rat them out to the government. It would be impossible to be a gay person’s friend and not be subject to the death penalty.

I pointed this out in the video below, and it bears repeating. In fact, I’ll ask you this favor:

Post the link to this video on Rachel’s Facebook page. Email it to her, too. If enough people do this, it’s bound to get her attention.

Here’s the direct link to the video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2fuEsRJp2nU

December 08, 2010

Dec. 10 - SLDN holds rally for DADT repeal

Chris Geidner reports the following details from Servicemembers Legal Defense Network on the rally they've called for this Friday on Capitol Hill to press the Senate to act:

  • WHAT: MISSION INCOMPLETE: NO SENATE VACATION UNTIL THE TASK IS FINISHED
  • WHO: Servicemembers Legal Defense Network and anyone else who supports repeal
  • WHERE: Constitution Ave. and Delaware Ave., NE, Upper Senate Park, North of U.S. Capitol
  • WHEN: Friday, December 10, 2010, noon ET

SLDN executive director Aubrey Sarvis states:

We call upon the Senate and the President to remain in session and in Washington until the National Defense Authorization Act is passed – which includes the repeal of 'Don’t Ask.' The Senate is scheduled to break for holiday vacation; we can’t let them leave. We must show our rage for repeal and insist the Senate stay in Washington until they have finished the job. We implore all who support repeal to join us outside the Senate this Friday. As Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said, 'If not now, when?'

December 03, 2010

DC Center: Bathroom Access Project Update

Bathroom_access_logo In order to combat anti-transgender discrimination in public accommodations, D.C. regulations require business owners to place gender-neutral signage on single-occupancy restrooms. The DC Center gives an update on its efforts in conjunction with the DC Trans Coalition to make sure this is enforced:

The Bathroom Access Project wants to keep you updated on our progress! Check out the following results:

100 establishments have been visited.

70 establishment were non-compliant with DC regulations.

63 establishments have been reported to the DC Office of Human Rights.

53 establishments have been followed up with by the DC Office of Human Rights.

36 establishments have received a Director's Inquiry.

65 establishments have changed their signs as a result of corporate change brought on by the DC Center's and DC Transgender Coalition's efforts.

99 establishments total have changed their restroom signs as a result!

The Bathroom Access Project is dedicated to informing business owners about Chapter 8, of Title 4 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations, which reads, "All entities covered under the Act with single-occupancy restroom facilities shall use gender-neutral signage for those facilities..." (os.dc.gov). This means all single-stall restrooms, or restrooms designed for single occupants, in Washington, DC must be gender neutral or unisex.

Congrats to Renee Reopell, who has led these efforts for the Center. Click on the above link for information on how you can help.

(Hat tip: David Mariner)