UPDATE: Lynch signs NH marriage bill

“Jennifer Vanasco”

Gov. John Lynch has signed the New Hampshire equal marriage bill, making New Hampshire the sixth state to have gay marriage. The law will take effect January 1, 2010.

The Senate passed the equal marriage compromise bill this morning; this afternoon, the House passed the bill 198-176.

“With Gov. Lynch signing legislation passed by the state Senate and House, New Hampshire has become the latest state to recognize that loving, committed couples, and their families, should receive equal dignity and respect under the law,” said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese.  “No religious institution will have to recognize any marriage under this law, as the language proposed by Gov. Lynch and agreed to by the legislature made abundantly clear.”

Only Rhode Island is the outlier in New England – the very Catholic state will be a much longer fight, even though a May poll showed that most Rhode Islanders actually favor a gay marriage bill.

Continue reading at:  http://www.365gay.com/news/vanasco-new-hampshire-house-votes-for-gay-marriage/

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GenderPac Closes its Doors

http://gpac.org/

May 28, 2009

Dear Friend and Supporters,

15 years ago the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition (GenderPAC) was the only national group focused on gender issues as we know it today, and few in places of power knew anything about it. The issue was hardly on the national radar in any meaningful way.

However, a two-year Theory of Change process has led our Board and Staff to the happy conclusion that there is a vibrant and expanding core of organizations committed to this work. Many of the early challenges we took on years ago – recognition of issues of gender in the workplace, on campus, and in the halls of Congress – are well launched and on their way.

We take that as a sign of success. But also a sign that the original mission for which GenderPAC was formed, has been a success, and is behind us now. It is time for us to move on, to new challenges and the next edge in the growing struggle for gender rights.

Consider just…

- 12 years ago we started helping major corporations add gender identity and expression to their non-discrimination policies – today there are over 200;

- 11 years ago we initiated the first “National Gender Lobby Day” – today more than 1,000 advocates have taken part and two national organizations run similar events;

- 10 years ago we started advocating for gender protections in ENDA – today 300+ groups have signed a public letter to members of Congress including Barney Frank and Nancy Pelosi endorsing that position;

- 8 years ago as members of the Hate Crimes Coalition we began advocating for gender protections in the federal hate crimes bill – today the coalition is unanimously behind these protections and they have been included in the Matthew Shepherd Act;

- 4 years ago we began supporting student leaders who wanted their colleges to address gender identity and expression in their anti-bullying policies – today there are 152, including the entire Ivy League.

GenderYOUTH Network

Today there are chapters on more than 100 campuses, and over 1,100 students taking part. Because of their groundbreaking work, 83% of “Top 25″ schools now have added gender identity and expression in their non-discrimination policies. Their accomplishments have been reported and disseminated through our unique GENIUS Index (Gender Equality National Index for Universities & Schools).

We are proud to have partnered with ChoiceUSA, and they have been one of our strongest partners in this effort. Therefore, it is with great pride that we had transitioned the network and its resources to ChoiceUSA. For more information about that program, please call ChoiceUSA at 202.965.7700 or go to www.choiceusa.org for more information.

Gender-Based Violence & Hate Crimes

Two years ago we released our first human rights report on gender-based violence. 50 Under 30: Masculinity & the War on America’s Youth documented an under reported tide of violence against predominantly Black and Latina/o transgender and gay youth. It quickly became the standard for documenting these attacks, and was used by the House Hate Crimes Subcommittee, the federal Hate Crimes Coalition, and the International Association of Police Chiefs. Next year our work will be integrated into the annual hate crimes report issued by the NYC Anti-Violence Project. Call 212.714.1184 or go to www.avp.org for more information.

Men & Masculinity

In the last three years, our work has increasingly incorporated a new focus on masculinity and the challenges faced by young men of color. Out of that work has come our collaboration and new strategic partnerships. Please visit those partners: the Black Men & Boys Initiative, ITVS’s Masculinity Project, P/PVs Marginalized Males of Color Task Force at P/PV, and Groundsparks’ Straight laced program.

ENDA

As LLDEF, NCLR, GLAD, and the ACLU noted in a recent joint statement on ENDA:  “Discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation and gender identity at some level are all discrimination based on stereotypes about what is or is not appropriate for men and women.” “Weakened ENDA Means Less Protection for Everyone,” 2008, LLDEF, NCLR, ACLU & GLAD

This is a winning argument that can help build broader coalitions and bring gender issues into the mainstream. This is an argument GenderPAC has made since 1995, and it is gratifying to see it being adopted by other groups and we have no doubt we will see an inclusive ENDA in this administration.

For more information about workplace issues and ENDA see
www.hrc.org
www.ngltf.org
www.outandequal.org

We have deeply appreciated your support through all these years. It has enabled us to take the issue of gender stereotypes to places none of us ever expected and integrated into so many programs in other nonprofits.

None of us are going anywhere. But some have moved on with their various programs and other nonprofits working on this important issue. We will still be engaged in this work, but not as GenderPAC.

For all that you have enabled us to do, and for all our accomplishments together, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. It has been a great 15 years, a productive 15 years, and it
is finally time to turn the page. .

Thank you!

Riki Wilchins, Executive Director
Cynthia Neff, Board Co Chair
Kevin Jones, Board Co-chairs

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The Big Picture

When I started to write this I was going to title it, “Abortion, Sex Reassignment Surgery and Freedom vs Theocratic Fascism” because as a result being part of the 1960s liberation movements I tend to see various forms of oppression as related rather than individualized the way the various identity movements of today view matters.

The masters are very good at maintaining their dominance by manipulating us into being at each others throats by using trigger issues.  Everyone is a competitor in the oppression olympics to the point where they can see only their own particular oppression.  This makes it hard to work for common causes, big picture issues.

Lately removing GID and TS/HBS from the DSM has been something I view as important.  Unlike some I do not particularly want either transvestism or transgenderism in there either.

I can even see the point of inclusiveness in hate crimes and anti-discrimination laws.  I have zero interest in seeing either transvestites or transgenders legally oppressed.

They are not the enemy.

They are not the Christo-Fascist terrorists cold bloodedly murdering doctors who perfom legal abortions.  I hope they mostly support women having abortion access should the need  or desire to terminate a pregnancy arise.

However those same Christo-Fascists who want to infringe upon women exercising control over their own bodies and lives are the same parties who lead the attacks againsrt LGBT/T people on issues as wide ranging as marriage equality, hate crimes laws and anti-discrimination bills.

The same people who oppose affirmative action and anti-discrimination measures for minorities are the same ones who oppose women’s equality or equality of racial and ethnic minorities.  And they like the pukes who attacked the World Trade Center claim god is on their side and wants them to oppress these classes of people.

Our response tends to be one of forming a circular firing squad and attacking another oppressed minority as though that really accomplishes anything other than doing the master’s dirty work for him.

When we examine the ties and connections of people like Bailey, Blanchard, McHugh, Zucker et. al. we find an uncomfortable intimacy with people and ideas that tend to be embraced not my the psychiatric mainstream but rather by the fringe elements that make up groups like NARTH and those who claim to cure homosexuality in the name of religion.

When I focus on religion as the oppressor I focus on the loud mouthed Christo-Fascist knowing they may well not represent all religions but then the Universal Unitarians are not the problem as I have yet to read of any UUs promoting legalized bigotry by passing laws oppressing women and minorities.

Christo-Fascists like their brothers the Islamo-Fascists are the ones who want to become theocratic dictators demanding obedience to their bizarre misogynistic rules or face death by some of the cruelest means of torture ever devised.

At various times in the last century movements have arisen that attempted to unite the various oppressed minorities to fight for issues shared by all.  The Industrial Workers of the World in the early part of the 20th century and then the various movements of the 1960s.

And for a few moments those unifying mass movements looked as though they could unite the oppressed in struggle against their common enemy.

I’ve been a radical for some 45 years now.  Being born with transsexualism and being an obvious transkid meant that I was oppressed and abused from infancy.  Way too often religion was either the source of that oppression or the justification.  As I grew older I heard it trotted out to justify antisemitism, racism, homophobia, misogyny and transphobia.

The self-righteous have no problem killing, degrading and oppressing because the invisible bully in the sky tells them to do so.  If you visit their sites you do not see them condemning the murder of Dr. Tiller…  No…  Most of them have taken off their disguises of civility and sound exactly like Fred Phelps.

You won’t find them mourning murdered or abused transkids either.  They are too busy filling the media with lies about how hate crimes laws will oppress them.  They are nothing but bullies and bullying and oppressing is their real religion.

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