Our Lady J Releases ‘We Stand’ Live Video, Discusses Upcoming Debut Album

From Huffington Post:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/our-lady-j-we-stand_n_1720226.html?utm_hp_ref=gay-voices

By
Posted: 07/30/2012

Our Lady J has made headlines by befriending “Harry Potter” star Daniel Radcliffe (and causing a scandal while doing it), raising money for her breast surgery by playing “Boob Aid” fundraising concerts and staging her brilliant “Gospel of Dolly” all-Dolly Parton cover shows.

A regular in the downtown NYC music and art scene, she moved to L.A. last year to record her first album and has been playing shows all over the city to test out new material.

Last week she released a live video of one of her new songs, “We Stand.” Fans who haven’t caught one of her more recent shows and who are only familiar with her piano and gospel choir-based songs may be a bit surprised to hear the new more electronic direction she’s headed in, but we can’t get enough of it.

We chatted briefly with Our Lady J to find out more about the origins of “We Stand,” her upcoming album, writing about being transgender and more.

After you read the interview, have a listen to “We Stand” (above) and if you can stop yourself from hitting “replay,” head over to her official website and follow her on Twitter for more info and upcoming show dates.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/our-lady-j-we-stand_n_1720226.html?utm_hp_ref=gay-voices

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Transgender Patients Find Safe Haven at Bronx Family Practice

From DNA Info:  http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20120730/longwood/transgender-patients-find-safe-haven-at-bronx-family-practice

By Patrick Wall
July 30, 2012

LONGWOOD — With close-cropped hair, a few arm tattoos and an easy smile, Q resembles many other young men his age — which suits him well, except when he has to visit a gynecologist.

Q, who is 26 and lives in Co-op City, was born female but has been transitioning into a man over the past several years.

In March, when Q arrived at a doctor’s office for a scheduled pelvic exam, the staff were so visibly rattled by his male identity that Q fled the clinic.

“They should be a little more compassionate,” Q said recently. “You see an old lady walk in with something wrong with her, you’re not going to look at her any different. So why would you look at us different?”

The experience reminded Q why he prefers Community Healthcare Network’s Bronx Health Center at 975 Westchester Ave.

That center and another location that the nonprofit network operates in Jamaica, Queens, have incorporated a program for transgender patients into their family clinics — an arrangement that the network says is the only one of its kind in the city.

The approach appears to be working.

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Gay Marriage Plank Will Be In Democratic Party Platform At Convention

From Huffington Post:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/gay-marriage-democratic-convention_n_1720030.html

Sam Stein and Luke Johnson
07/30/2012

WASHINGTON — A Democratic Party source confirmed to The Huffington Post that the party will include a plank supporting marriage equality in its official platform at the upcoming convention.

The news, first reported by the Washington Blade, represents a historic and phenomenal win for LGBT rights groups, which could hardly have envisioned progress being made so quickly on this front.

The Democratic source relayed that officials unanimously agreed at a recent platform drafting committee meeting in Minneapolis to adopt language endorsing same-sex marriage. Several steps must be taken before the language is codified. A full platform committee will consider the draft in a meeting in Detroit in two weeks. It will then go to the convention delegates in Charlotte for final approval. But the deal is more or less final.

Retiring Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass), a member of the drafting committee who recently married his longtime partner, told the Advocate that the decision was reached without dissent.

“The fact is, by every action that should be taken, the Democrats in Washington have repudiated DOMA,” he said, referring to the 1996 law signed by President Bill Clinton that barred the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage.

According to the Blade, the “language in the platform approved on Sunday not only backs marriage equality, but also rejects DOMA and has positive language with regard to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. The exact wording of the language wasn’t immediately available.”

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/gay-marriage-democratic-convention_n_1720030.html

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“Women’s Choices” – Obama for America

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Republicans vs. Women

From The New York Times:   http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/30/opinion/republicans-vs-women.html

Editorial
July 29, 2012

Even with a persistent gender gap in a presidential election year, House Republicans have not given up on their campaign to narrow access to birth control, abortion care and lifesaving cancer screenings. Far from it.

A new Republican spending proposal revives some of the more extreme attacks on women’s health and freedom that were blocked by the Senate earlier in this Congress. The resurrection is part of an alarming national crusade that goes beyond abortion rights and strikes broadly at women’s health in general.

These setbacks are recycled from the Congressional trash bin in the fiscal 2013 spending bill for federal health, labor and education programs approved by a House appropriations subcommittee on July 18 over loud objections from Democratic members to these and other provisions.

The measure would bar Planned Parenthood’s network of clinics, which serve millions of women across the country, from receiving any federal money unless the health group agreed to no longer offer abortion services for which it uses no federal dollars — a patently unconstitutional provision. It would also eliminate financing for Title X, the effective federal family-planning program for low-income women that provides birth control, breast and cervical cancer screenings, and testing for sexually-transmitted diseases. Without this program, some women would die, and unintended pregnancies would rise, resulting in some 400,000 more abortions a year and increases in Medicaid-related costs, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a leading authority on reproductive health.

On top of that, the bill would prevent implementation of most of the Affordable Care Act, wiping out its numerous advances for women’s health. It would seriously weaken the requirement that employee insurance plans cover birth control and other preventive health services by allowing any employer to opt out based on personal religious beliefs or moral objections.

Continue reading at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/30/opinion/republicans-vs-women.html

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Another $200 mln misspent in Iraq. Anybody surprised?

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White House wants Romney to explain Israel remarks

Looks like Plastic Man has got some Mitt’splaining to do…

From Raw Story:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/07/30/white-house-wants-romney-to-explain-israel-remarks/

By Agence France-Presse
Monday, July 30, 2012

WASHINGTON — The White House called Monday on Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney to explain recent remarks including his apparent endorsement of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, a position that counters US policy.

Romney, in the midst of a three-nation tour, gave a speech Sunday in Jerusalem where he hailed the city as “the capital of Israel,” in apparent support of a position held by the Jewish state but never accepted by the global community.

The comment was swiftly rejected by Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat as “unacceptable” and “harmful to American interests in our region.”

But after Romney made fresh controversial statements Monday to donors in Jerusalem including suggesting Israeli “culture” helped explain the country’s economic success — a position Erakat denounced as “racist” — President Barack Obama’s office urged Romney to clarify his comments.

“One of the challenges of being an actor on the international stage, particularly when you’re traveling to such a sensitive part of the world, is that your comments are very closely scrutinized for meaning, for nuance, for motivation,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest said about the Monday remarks.

Continue reading at:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/07/30/white-house-wants-romney-to-explain-israel-remarks/

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Mitt’s Gaffs Just Keep on Coming. Gawd He’s even Dumber than Sarah Palin!

Mitt Romney Comments At Fundraiser Outrage Palestinians

From Huffington Post:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/mitt-romney-palestinians_n_1718496.html

By KASIE HUNT and KARIN LAUB
07/30/12

JERUSALEM — Mitt Romney told Jewish donors Monday that their culture is part of what has allowed them to be more economically successful than the Palestinians, outraging Palestinian leaders who suggested his comments were racist and out of touch with the realities of the Middle East. Romney’s campaign later said his remarks were mischaracterized.

“As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel which is about $21,000, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality,” the Republican presidential candidate told about 40 wealthy donors who ate breakfast at the luxurious King David Hotel.

Romney said some economic histories have theorized that “culture makes all the difference.”

“And as I come here and I look out over this city and consider the accomplishments of the people of this nation, I recognize the power of at least culture and a few other things,” Romney said, citing an innovative business climate, the Jewish history of thriving in difficult circumstances and the “hand of providence.” He said similar disparity exists between neighboring countries, like Mexico and the United States.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/30/mitt-romney-palestinians_n_1718496.html

Mitt Romney to rekindle cold war spirit with speech in Poland attacking Russia

From The Guardian UK:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jul/30/mitt-romney-speech-poland-russia

After gaffe-strewn UK visit and controversial remarks in Israel, US presidential hopeful turns to symbol of anti-Soviet triumph

, Europe editor
guardian.co.uk, Monday 30 July 2012

Mitt Romney is to round off his campaign to boost his presidential foreign policy credentials by returning to a cold war symbol of anti-Soviet triumph and western-backed liberty in Poland.

Following a gaffe-strewn visit to Britain, where he queried the Olympic host’s fitness to stage the Games, and after stirring controversy in Israel by calling Jerusalem the Israeli capital and seeming to back unilateral Israeli strikes against Iran, the Republican White House contender arrived on Monday in Poland, where he is to deliver a setpiece speech on democracy and freedom.

The speech on the “values of liberty” at Warsaw University on Tuesday is expected to seek to rekindle the flames of US cold war righteousness by featuring a strong attack on Russia and President Vladimir Putin’s rollback of democratic gains, while also criticising the US president, Barack Obama, for allegedly sacrificing the interests and security of central European democracy in favour of realpolitik with the Kremlin.

Romney has previously described Russia as America’s “No 1 geopolitical foe”, in contrast with Obama, who has sought to press “the reset button” in relations with Moscow.

Continue reading at:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jul/30/mitt-romney-speech-poland-russia

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BBC Report: Bishop Romney Told Pregnant Mother “Give Your Child to The Church”

From I Acknowledge Class Warfare Exists:  http://www.classwarfareexists.com/bbc-report-bishop-romney-told-pregnant-mother-give-your-child-to-the-church/#axzz229aecjNM

by icarus
30 Jul 2012

Mitt Romney was a Mormon bishop for five years in the 1980′s in addition to being president of the Boston chapter.  The BBC interviews a former parishioner of the Boston Mormon church that Mitt Romney was bishop of; her name is Peggy Hayes.  She tells the BBC her story that she has never shared in an interview before.

Peggy got pregnant out of wedlock and Mitt Romney came to visit her; she says he told her to give her child up to the church for adoption.  She also says that if she didn’t give up her child to the church – Romney threatened to have her excommunicated from the church.

“I said well are you suggesting that I give up my child to the church.  And he pretty much said – yeah, that’s exactly what we we’re asking you to do … is to give up your child to the church.  And he said somewhat casually – well … you know you’re facing some serious consequences pretty much.  And if you don’t give up your child then you would considered to be in violation of the doctrines of the church.  And in effect what that would mean is that you would be excommunicated.”
~Peggy Hayes, former Romney parishioner

The Boston Globe did an entire article on this on 8/26/94 – a blog captured it (it’s currently behind a firewall) and you can read the entire story HERE:

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Spain angers feminists with plan to tighten abortion law

From Raw Story:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/07/29/spain-angers-feminists-with-plan-to-tighten-abortion-law/

By Agence France-Presse
Sunday, July 29, 2012

MADRID — Spain’s conservative government has provoked a storm among women’s groups with plans to tighten the country’s abortion laws to make the procedure illegal in cases where the foetus is deformed.

The government announced Friday it would alter an abortion law introduced by its Socialist predecessors in 2010 which gave women the legal right to abortion on demand for up to 14 weeks of pregnancy.

The 2010 law also allowed women the legal right to abort up to the 22nd week of pregnancy in cases where the mother’s health is at risk or the foetus shows serious deformities.

In cases of an extremely severe serious malformation of a foetus, an abortion could be carried out at any time if approved by an ethics committee.

But last week Justice Minister Alberto Ruiz-Gallardon came out strongly against allowing abortion in cases of a deformed foetus.

“I don’t understand why we should deprive a foetus of life by allowing abortion for the simple reason that it suffers a handicap or a deformity,” he said in an interview published in conservative daily La Razon on July 22.

Continue reading at:  http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/07/29/spain-angers-feminists-with-plan-to-tighten-abortion-law/

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Budget cuts: million jobs to be slashed?

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Happy birthday to Medicare

From The Houston Chronicle:  http://www.chron.com/opinion/outlook/article/Happy-birthday-to-Medicare-3741814.php

By Margaret A. Nosek
Friday, July 27, 2012

With all the commotion surrounding the Supreme Court and the Affordable Care Act (ACA), it would be easy to overlook an important birthday: Today is the 47th anniversary of Medicare, the public health insurance program that covers our nation’s seniors and people with severe disabilities.

It’s a birthday that deserves to be celebrated, including here in the Lone Star State. Medicare provides 48 million Americans – about 3 million of them in Texas – with reasonably good access to health care, thereby easing their suffering, prolonging their lives, and reducing financial pressures on them and their families. Before Medicare was enacted in 1965, most retired older people were at risk of financial ruin when they got sick. Medicare changed that picture, and our state and nation are much better for it.

The Medicare program is not perfect, of course. It has burdensome co-pays and deductibles, and its benefits could be better. But it remains immensely popular, and it’s not hard to figure out why. A new study in the journal Health Affairs found that “Medicare beneficiaries age 65 and older are more satisfied with their health insurance, have better access to care, and are less likely to have problems paying medical bills than working-age adults who get insurance through employers or purchase coverage on their own.”

Keep that in mind the next time you hear a politician or pundit argue that the Medicare program should be converted to a private voucher program, where seniors would get a flat amount to buy a health policy from a commercial insurance company. Such schemes are lucrative for the big private insurers but would be bad for most seniors, leaving them with inferior and progressively deteriorating coverage.

Complete article at:  http://www.chron.com/opinion/outlook/article/Happy-birthday-to-Medicare-3741814.php

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The CEO Plan to Steal Your Social Security and Medicare

From Common Dreams:   http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/07/30-11

by Dean Baker
Published on Monday, July 30, 2012 by Common Dreams

Many people are following the presidential election closely with the idea that the outcome will have a major impact on national policy. However, according to Steven Pearlstein, a veteran Washington Post columnist and reporter, it may not matter who wins the election. In a column last week, Pearlstein told readers that the top executives of some of the country’s largest companies are getting together to craft a budget package that they will try to push through Congress and get the president to sign.

While Pearlstein clearly sees these backroom meetings of corporate chieftains in positive terms (he refers to them as “grown-ups” who have been noticeably absent from the conversation about the budget), the rest of us might view this plotting a bit differently. As Pearlstein openly acknowledges, this corporate coup is an end-run around the electorate. As corrupt as the political process may have become, at least we will get a vote in the election. Pearlstein’s plotters are not inviting the rest of us into the conversation.

Many of the same folks who brought the economy to ruin just a few years ago are now going to come up with a plan that is supposed to set the budget and the economy on a forward path. At the center of their proposal are big cuts in Social Security and Medicare.

The most popular Social Security cut among this gang is a reduction in the annual cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) by 0.3 percentage points. They are betting that ordinary people are too dumb to notice this cut since it is a relatively small amount each year.

However, the effect of this cut accumulates into a much bigger deal over time. After 10 years it is roughly 3 percent, after 20 years it would be close to 6 percent, and after 30 years it would be close to 9 percent.

Continue reading at:   http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/07/30-11

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Sign Petition: Chair, ABA Business Law Section, Gonzaga Univ School of Law: Remove Cathy Brennan as liaison To ABA’s Commission on LGBT

From Change.org:  http://www.change.org/petitions/chair-aba-business-law-section-gonzaga-univ-school-of-law-remove-cathy-brennan-as-liaison-to-aba-s-commission-on-lgbt

Attorney Catherine (Cathy) M. Brennan Partner at Hudson Cook LLP has used her position as a lawyer to repeatedly harass, intimidate, bully and embarrass a portion of the community that she has been entrusted by the American Bar Association to help, transgender and transsexual peoples.Recently Cathy Brennan cyberbullied a transgender woman who had a docket date to change her gender marker by publishing that information and asking that others contact the judge in oppisition to her petition.

http://pamshouseblend.firedoglake.com/2012/05/24/the-bittersweet-change-of-gender-court-ruling-it-came-with-cyberbulling/

Cathy Brennan recently maliciously outed a 17 year old. Transgender Youth To His High School in retaliation for the youths ignorance regarding “rape jokes’ which he later appoligized profusly for after being educated about how those ‘jokes’ are unnaceptable.
http://planetransgender.blogspot.com/2012/06/cathey-brennan-laywer-maliciously-outs.html

Cathy Brennan and co author Elizabeth Hungerford tendered a paper to the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, in response to a query regarding the current international status of women stating that:

“the proliferation of legislation designed to protect “gender identity” and “gender expression” undermines legal protections for females vis-à-vis sex segregated spaces, such as female-only clubs, public restrooms, public showers, and other spaces designated as “female only.”  http://www.bilerico.com/2011/08/less_than_woman_less_than_human.php 

The event picture which was sent to a transgender woman via twitter is the straw that broke the camel’s back.
http://planetransgender.blogspot.com/2012/07/catherine-brennans-sorry-for-you-dick.html

It is unnaceptable that Cathy Brennan is a liaison to Gonzaga Univ School of Law for the ABA’s Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity  This allows her unfettered access to further stigmitize trans people from within the legal syastem.

The  very fact she holds that position validates her anti transgender views and further places in harms way the people she was entrusted to work for.

Sign Petition

Remove Cathy Brennan as liaison To ABA’s Commission on LGBT

Greetings,

I just signed the following petition addressed to: Linda Rusch, Chair, ABA Business Law Section, Gonzaga Univ School of Law.

—————-
Remove Cathy Brennan from her position as liaison to the American Bar Association’s Committee on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity.

Attorney Catherine (Cathy) M. Brennan a Partner at Hudson Cook LLP has used her position as a lawyer to repeatedly harass, intimidate, bully and embarrass a portion of the community that she has been entrusted by the American Bar Association to help, transgender and transsexual peoples.

Please read the petition information to understand the reasons why I am asking this of you.

I hope you will consider this petition a plea for our lives, for freedom from intimidation. .
—————-

Sincerely,

[Your name]

 

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Catherine Brennan’s “Sorry about Your Dick” TweetPic Ignites Trans Firestorm

From Planet Transgender:  http://planetransgender.blogspot.com/2012/07/catherine-brennans-sorry-for-you-dick.html

By Kelli Busey
July 29, 2012

Reposted with permission

Catherine Brennan’s “Sorry about Your Dick” TweetPic Ignites Trans Firestorm

Attorney Catherine M. Brennan Partner at Hudson Cook LLP who’s protected twitter account is @bugbrennan sent the below twitter picture to Marti Abernathey, a transgender woman who writes for the TransAdvocate.

So what’s the big deal you ask? Just a imbecilic moronic juvenile insult, right? Not so, Cathy Brennan is a liaison to the American Bar Association’s Committee on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and contributed to the…

So while Brennan’s not insulting transgender people with asinine twitter insults what other things has she done.

To name a couple Brennan co authored the now infamous letter to the UN intentionality timing it so the transgender community had no time to repute letter her before the commission ended. The crux of the letter was this paragraph…

where she makes it clear she does not believe a trans woman is female or should be allowed in public accommodations because to do so would place woman in danger of rape of fore mentioned transsexuals (men)!

But her most egregious conduct to date was to out a 17 year old trans youth to his school knowingly endangering his life.

So what’s this vengeful immoral hater of transgender people doing on a LGBT legal commission? That’s what I would like to know. I have resisted contacting Brennan’s professional contacts for years but I think its time we did that and I’m not alone.

American Bar Association
Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
321 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60654

E-mail address: sogi@americanbar.org
Telephone: 312-988-5000

******
Staff
Robin L. Rone
Director

Phone: 312-988-5137
Fax: 312-988-5647
E-mail: robin.rone@americanbar.org

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The new Matrix revolution: Director says she’s now a pink-haired woman called Lana

From The Daily Mail UK:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2180453/Larry-Wachowski-Matrix-Director-says-hes-pink-haired-woman-called-Lana.html

By Daily Mail Reporter
29 July 2012

THE Hollywood director responsible for the hit Matrix movies has ‘outed’ himself as a pink-haired transsexual called Lana.

Larry Wachowski, 47, one of  the most influential directors in Hollywood after Steven Spielberg, has been undergoing hormone therapy as part of his sex-change treatment for nearly a decade. In a trailer for his latest film, the £80 million production Cloud Atlas, Wachowski says in a soft and breathy voice: ‘Hi, I’m Lana.’ It is the first time ‘Larry’ has appeared publicly as ‘Lana’.

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Transgender Candidate Out to Make History in Florida

From The Advocate:  http://www.advocate.com/politics/transgender/2012/07/25/watch-transgender-candidate-out-make-history-florida

Gina Duncan, a candidate for the Orange County, Fla., Commission, could be the first transgender person elected in the Southeast.

BY Trudy Ring
July 25 2012

A transgender candidate for the Orange County Commission in central Florida is drawing favorable attention from local media for her historic bid.

Gina Duncan, who was born Gregory Pingston and transitioned in 2007 at age 50, is a small-business owner and former bank executive focusing on economic issues in her race. Duncan, a Democrat, was recently profiled by Orlando Fox affiliate WOFL.

The segment focuses on her tireless campaign efforts and her emphasis on job growth in the region, treating her transgender identity as incidental, while acknowledging the potentially history-making nature of her candidacy, as she would be the first transgender person elected to office in the southeastern United States. Reporter Chase Cain does ask her when being transgender will not longer be an issue, and she says, “Maybe not in my lifetime, but someday being transgender means no more than being right- or left-handed.”

She will face incumbent Ted Edwards and write-in candidate Ariel Christenson in a nonpartisan election August 14. Watch the interview with WOFL below, and follow this link to Duncan’s and Edwards’s interviews with the Orlando Sentinel editorial board. Duncan’s campaign website is here.

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The Catholic Church’s Complicity In NOM-Regnerus’s Anti-Gay Hate Speech

From The New Civil Rights Movement:  http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/opinion-the-catholic-churchs-complicity-in-nom-regneruss-anti-gay-hate-speech/discrimination/2012/07/29/44825

by Scott Rose
on July 29, 2012

Reposted with permission

We have been reporting on an invalid sociological study on gay parenting carried out by researcher Mark Regnerus of the University of Texas, Austin.

Regnerus’s known total of $785,000 for the study was arranged by The Witherspoon Institute and The Bradley Foundation, where Robert P. George – (head of the anti-gay-rights, scientifically disreputable, so-called National Organization for Marriage) – holds positions of authority. Witherspoon president Luis Tellez is a NOM board member. NOM’s Robert George is a long-time Catholic Church co-conspirator in the Church’s ages-long, Unholy War Against Gays. He is a current Board member of The Catholic League, whose motormouth president Bill Donohue has a long and shameful history of verbal gay bashing.

The Regnerus study currently is being used as an anti-gay-rights political weapon in the 2012 elections. With its toxic connections to the so-called National Organization for Marriage, the Catholic Church of course has been using the invalid Regnerus study as a political weapon against LGBT-Americans — who against their wills are obliged to subsidize one of the very worst of their relentless and ruthless oppressors worldwide — the tax-exempt Catholic Church – with their hard-earned tax dollars.

Clarity still is needed as to the real source of the funding for the Regnerus study. Sure, the Witherspoon Institute gave a known minimal total of of $695,000, and the Bradley Foundation a known minimal total of $90,000, but where exactly did they find those big bucks? Could the Church possibly have been involved in getting that money to Witherspoon and/or the Bradley Foundation?  Witherspoon so far has refused to cooperate with Freedom of Information Act requests from multiple reporters for its Regnerus study-related communications.

Like NOM, and like Regnerus’s study, the Catholic Church is scientifically disreputable. When science has seemed  to contradict Catholic dogma, the Church often has lashed out maliciously at scientists and those who advance science and have faith in it. In its Unholy War Against Gays, the Church has used gay-bashing lingo from scientifically disreputable organizations like NARTH, and individual, scientifically disreputable figures like Paul Cameron. To understand how ridiculous, unscientific and out of touch with reality the Catholic Church is on all matters pertaining to human sexuality — not only on homosexuality — consider that the Catholic Catechism calls masturbation “an intrinsically and gravely disordered action.” A long, loud Bronx cheer please. Hard though it may be for some to grasp, the religious dogma simply does not match the science of human sexuality. Sperm are not holy, there are far more than enough sperm to go around; no sane person need worry about “wasting” sperm. We are reminded of the joke: Why does the Pope wear a bathing suit into the shower? He doesn’t want to look down on the unemployed. The Church’s obnoxious, science-bashing stupidity is implicit in the dogma of “papal infallibility,” which apparently holds that the Pope, not science, understands sexuality generally, homosexuality in particular, and has a right, based on the Pope’s anti-scientific gay bashing, to meddle in politics and civil laws around the world with a goal of maintaining and/or redoubling sexual orientation apartheid.

Ludicrous, duplicitous claims from Catholic Church and NOM officials that they “love” gay people are properly understood in the context of those two parties’ large-scale psychological domestic-and-political violence against LGBTers. It is characteristic of abusers to make fake declarations of “love” for their victims. That is not love, and nobody should be fooled by the deliberately disingenuous abusers.

For background information on the thick-as-thieves relationship between 1) the anti-gay-rights Catholic Church, and 2) the anti-gay-rights, so-called National Organization for Marriage, go here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here.

Notice that that last link is to a NOM Blog post reporting on Ratzinger’s appointment of Bishop Salvatore Cordileone as Archbishop of San Francisco. The NOM Blog post headline is  Bishop Cordileone, “Godfather of Prop 8″, Promoted to Abp. of San Francisco.

Thus we see that NOM is tone deaf to Italian-Americans who object to jokey, knee-jerk references to people of Italian heritage as being heads of organized crime mobs, yet at the same time, “Godfather” certainly is fitting for the Catholic Church’s political gay-basher Cordileone. On the one hand, NOM should not have referred to him as the “Godfather of Prop 8.” On the other hand — (Mr. Cordileone) — if 1) the Catholic Church of Rome’s 2)  Unholy-War-Against-Gays-Mob- Shoe fits you — (and that anti-gay-rights patented Catholic Church Mob Footwear certainly does fit Cordileone) — then you are accurately described as wearing it.

That the NOM-leaders-financed, invalid Regnerus study is deliberately misleading and defamatory of gays is beyond all question.  An amicus brief filed by eight major professional associations including the American Medical Association was filed specifically to define exactly what — in an ACP brief relying on the Regnerus study — misrepresented the Regnerus study, but the brief also went on to define what in the Regnerus study itself disqualifies it from being taken seriously as science. Neither NOM nor Catholic Church officials have ever seriously engaged with the rationally-articulated, science-based dismissals of the Regnerus study as science. Naturally, the verified science goes in one Catholic Church ear and out the other, as the Church races full steam ahead with its illicit political propagandizing and gay bashing based on the invalid Regnerus study.

We never should have been forced into the position of having to defend against defamation in the form of a bogus sociological study that makes no valid comparison between its test group and its control group, and still less should we have been forced into anti-defamation action by such a study funded by persons aspiring to yoke us with their gay-bashing religious dogma via our civil laws. These monsters’ actions in defaming us on the not-very-well-disguised background basis of their theocracy-based bigotry go against the letter and the spirit of the Constitution of the United States.

A few stomach-churning examples of the Church using Regnerus as a weapon against gays and gay rights will suffice.

Even as the Church fights tooth-and-nail against proposed laws to lift the statutes of limitations on the prosecution of child rape — and let us say that again, for emphasis, because it is true — the Catholic Church in the United States (and elsewhere) fights tooth-and-nail against proposed laws to lift the statutes of limitations on the prosecution of child rape — Cordileone had the towering nerve to address the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on June 14, 2012, and to tell them that the Regnerus study indicates that: “The protection of marriage as the union of one man and one woman is a work of justice and is foundational to the good of all, especially for those most vulnerable among us, our children.”

One verifiable, real-world phenomenon Cordileone’s gay-bashing propaganda leaves out of account, is that the number of children in foster care in recent decades has declined, thanks to responsible gay parents adopting children who were neglected, abused and/or abandoned by their irresponsible heterosexual parents. With its characteristic mean-spiritedness against gays, the Catholic Church is actively seeking to strengthen the stigma and the legal discrimination against those gay-headed families and their children. Cordileone outright lies about the Regnerus study, where he says that it is “one of the first studies on this topic to have a comprehensive and scientifically respectable approach.” His deliberately misleading statement about the discipline of the scientific study of gay parenting is despicable and beneath all contempt, and therefore, characteristic of Catholic Church officials’ lying, demonizing pronouncements against gay human beings. That, actually, as happens, is one of the reasons that Mussolini and the Vatican got along so well together. The Regnerus study does not — as Cordileone disingenuously alleges — have a “comprehensive and scientifically respectable approach.”  Had the Regnerus study been “comprehensive,” it would have surveyed — you know — actual children of gay parents. A gay parenting study like Regnerus’s that does not survey gay parents or their children can not in any sense be called “comprehensive.” The Godfather of Prop 8 is, as turns out, a shameless bullshit artist. Not a single scientist of good repute and without a conflict of interest in commenting on the Regnerus study has supported the Regnerus study as scientifically valid. Beyond the aforementioned AMA amicus brief, and as first reported here on TNCRM, a group of over 200 Ph.D.s and M.D.s signed a letter to the journal that published Regnerus, expressing concern over the study’s lack of intellectual integrity as well as over the suspicious circumstances of the study’s publication.

In response to the scientific debunking of the Regnerus study, the Regnerus study’s supporters pump out yet more bunk. A Baylor Institute for the Studies of Religion letter published in support of Regnerus bears the profoundly misleading title of A Social Scientific Response to the Regnerus Controversy. The Baylor letter contains deliberate subterfuges to dismiss as irrelevant the criticisms of the Regnerus study’s most glaring and obnoxious failings – including that it makes no valid comparison between its test group and its control group — yet these gay-bashing bigots have the nerve to call their anti-gay-rights propaganda a “social scientific response.” Most if not all of the signers of the Baylor letter have conflicts of interest in signing and publicizing it. The lead signer, for example, is Baylor ISR Director Byron Johnson; he also is a Senior Fellow of The Witherspoon Institute, which funded the Regnerus study and which is heavily promoting it in anti-gay-rights political contexts. This reporter sent Johnson an e-mail asking him to acknowledge on the record his conflict of interest in signing the Baylor letter without disclosing his connection to the Regnerus study’s funding and anti-gay-rights political promotions. Johnson did not provide the courtesy of a reply.

Before I highlight a second main Catholic Church use of the Regnerus study as a political weapon in the Church’s Unholy War Against Gays, please take a look at some additional Church-Regnerus-NOM, anti-gay-rights propaganda, by seeing here, here, and then here in French, and here in Spanish — (in a publication called La Espada Catolica, The Catholic Sword – they’re apparently pining for the good old days of The Crusades, when they slaughtered Jews and Muslims all across Europe and the Middle East) —  and then here in German, and then here in Portuguese, and then here in Dutch and then here in Italian. The NOM-heads-funded Regnerus anti-gay defamation has spread all around the world, a veritable contagion of gay-bashing lies.

NOM and the Catholic Church both are seemingly very worried about the P.R. fall-out from their dishonorable connections to the invalid and defamatory Regnerus study. It is hardly a surprise that NOM’s Maggie Gallagher, a pathological anti-gay liar and professional anti-gay hate speech propagandist responds to science-based debunkings of the Regnerus study with yet more of her filthy, gay-bashing lies.

It also is hardly surprising that the disreputable Catholic League President Bill Donohue is sweating the science-based criticism of the Regnerus study. Best-selling author Anne Rice called Donohue out by name when she filmed a video announcing that she was leaving the Catholic Church, in no small measure because of the Church’s gay bashing and political gay bashing. Donohue demonstrated what low-down, hypocritical stuff he is made of, when he and his co-conspirator Timothy Dolan took to Dolan’s blog, trashed a 16-year-old girl who alleged sexual abuse at the hands of a priest, and called the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests a “phony victims group.” If SNAP is a “phony victims group,” as Dolan and Donohue want the world to believe, then why, when SNAP was involved in Church child rape victims’ advocacy in the Los Angeles Diocese, did the Church settle with the victims for $660 million?

These vile, powerful Catholic adult males who abuse their power to trash a 16-year-old girl in public have no moral standing to carry out their Unholy War Against Gays. Yet, in response to my allegations of scientific and scholarly misconduct against Mark Regnerus –presented to the University of Texas at Austin — Donohue sent an ad hominem attack against me to UT President William Powers. Dohonue discloses to UT President Powers that Robert George is on the Board of the Catholic League, yet he does not fess up about George’s connections to the funding of the Regnerus study; Donohue’s disclosure is thus a non-disclosure disclosure and an attempted misrepresentation of facts relevant to the Regnerus matter. In the letter, Donohue alleges that he is a trained sociologist, yet he makes no attempted scientific justification for Regnerus’s failure to make a valid comparison between his study’s test group and control group. A student in any Sociology 101 class would get an F for insisting that inappropriate test-group, control group comparisons are valid.

In his cowardly, dishonest and contemptible letter, Donohue scoffed at my having characterized a letter sent by the Archbishop Dolan to President Obama as threatening. Dolan’s letter to President Obama, meanwhile, which Donohue actually attached to his own letter to Powers — (as though the Dolan letter proves that Dolan made no threat to Obama) – warned President Obama that if he continued on the road to equality, he would “precipitate a national conflict between Church and State of enormous proportions and to the detriment of both institutions.”

If that is not a threat, what is it? Does Donohue maybe believe that the President of the University of Texas at Austin can not identify a Catholic Church threat when he sees one in print?

In his letter, Donohue further mislabels as “scurrilous” my past statement that Robert George has “a long history of telling dehumanizing lies about gay people.” Meanwhile, Robert George has said that homosexuality is “beneath the dignity of human beings as free and rational creatures.” He has argued to the Supreme Court of the United States that it should be possible to throw gay people into prison and to fine them for their intimacy. His NOM colleague William Duncan held a symposium session at Liberty University titled Homosexuals or Homo Sapiens; Who Deserves Protect Class Status? There are mountains of additional similar, verifiable “dehumanizing lies” that have been told by Robert George and his NOM co-conspirators in their foaming-at-the-mouth, Unholy War Against Gays.

George & Co. very literally say that gay people are not human, but Donohue wants UT President Powers to believe that it is “scurrilous” for me to report that Robert George has a long history of telling dehumanizing lies against gay people. Has Donohue even checked a dictionary lately for the meaning of “scurrilous”?

Donohue also lies outright in his letter to UT President Powers, where he says that “the “Fortnight for Freedom” events that were organized by the bishops had absolutely nothing to do with same-sex marriage;” Donohue is mistaking Powers for a fool, and assuming that he has no fact-checking capabilities.

My original letter to UT’s President Powers complained of the Regnerus study’s NOM-linked funders using the Regnerus study as a cudgel against gays in the bishops’ “Fortnight for Freedom” events. The justification for my mentioning that, was and remains a justified suspicion that Regnerus could be politically in collusion with his study’s funders. Whereas Donohue tells powers that the “Fortnight for Freedom” had “absolutely nothing to do with same-sex marriage, the documented truth is that in association with the “Fortnight for Freedom,” the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops published a letter to its website that is one long hateful screed against marriage equality for gay couples. Demeaningly, the USCCB anti-gay screed forcefully deplores the fact that when equality becomes law, “same-sex sexual relationships must be treated as if they were marriage.” Though the USCCB screed demands that same-sex marriage be outlawed in order to protect “religious freedom,” the hateful screed is written in willful ignorance that whole Christian churches ordain out, married gay and lesbian ministers, and that those churches’ religious freedoms require for marriage equality to be our civil law. The screed is just absolutely shameless, lying anti-gay hate speech from the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, and then Donohue adds insult to injury by sending an ad hominem attack letter against me to UT President Powers in which he outright lies about the Church’s “Fortnight for Freedom,” which did in fact include heaping servings of political gay bashing.

With its blood-soaked history of persecutions of sexual and other minorities, you might suppose that the Church would have the sense to stop the persecutions, yet the Church knows no shame. With the Catholic Church’s “infallible” leader Ratzinger implicated in the unconscionable actions of shifting child rapist priests between parishes without notifying parishioners of the danger, the Church appears to believe that by scapegoating gays, it will succeed in distracting world attention from its malfeasance. Donohue is himself guilty of that brand of scapegoating of homosexuals; it is one of the reasons that Anne Rice called Donohue out by name. As is his wont when the Church is accurately criticized, Donohue retaliated against Anne by attempting to smear her, instead of apologizing for all of the Church’s wrongs inflicted on the innocent. When the Howell, Michigan, Catholic public school student Daniel Glowacki verbally gay bashed in his classroom on Spirit Day, NOM-linked attorneys of The Thomas More Law Center — (whose logo is a Catholic sword against a cross, and whose motto is “Battle Ready to Defend America“) — came to Glowacki’s defense, and NOM made a video with Glowacki as yet another of its vehicles for begging for gay-bashing blood money.  Ask yourselves, why has that organization named itself for Thomas More, who as Chancellor had some of his victims burned at the stake for the “crime” of translating the Bible into English? Why is its motto a war-mongering one, and its logo a Catholic sword with a cross?  Are they not yet satisfied with their floods of anti-gay hate speech and the anti-gay-hate crimes that stem from the social attitudes at least in part occasioned by that hate speech?

Name so much as one — just one! — major gay rights organization that has a similarly violence-drenched logo and motto. Those are NOM’s anti-gay-rights Thomas More attorneys with their hate-and-war-mongering ways, and NOM’s head honchos at The Witherspoon Institute arranged for the funding of the invalid Regnerus study. The war that the Catholic Church and NOM wage unjustifiably against totally innocent gay people, is fought by the Church and by NOM as a dirty, dirty, dirty war, which those bellicose anti-gay parties wage without any sense of restraint or decency.

The Catholic Church has never adequately acknowledged its complicity in the mass slaughters of Jews and others throughout the ages. After telling its “flock” for nearly two thousand years that all Jews had to be held accountable for the death of Jesus, the Church had its “infallible” Popeexonerate” the Jews!  Mass slaughters of Jews in the Crusades, umpteen Catholic human rights abuses of Jews in the Spanish Inquisition, with the Vatican having a branch called The Holy Office of the Inquisition, the Achtung! Sieg Heil! Old World Catholic Church charm of its Reichskonkordat political treaty with Hitler, plus the fact that the Vatican wished Adolph Hitler a happy birthday every year he was in power – the party in need of “exoneration” would hardly be the Jews.

The Church has yet even to settle with its victims in matters where it is irrefutably documented as being in collusion with Nazi war criminals. Vatican officials who helped known Nazi war criminals to evade justice through the ratlines to South America accepted assets stolen from Jewish as well as from gay Holocaust victims in payment for their criminal services. Yes; to assist a known war criminal to evade justice is in itself a crime. To accept fenced assets stolen from Holocaust victims to carry out the separate crime of helping war criminals to evade justice actually and truly is an additional, monstrous crime. Accepting fenced goods in payment for services is a crime. Catholic Church officials are guilty of those monstrous crimes.

Do not hold your breath, expecting the Church to acknowledge its complicity in getting gay Holocaust victims deported to be tortured and killed in concentration camps. Throughout Europe, there stand memorials to gay Holocaust victims, yet instead of acknowledging its role in those gay Holocaust victims’ tortures and murders, the Catholic Church picks up its  blood-stained sword of cutting-and-stabbing, anti-gay defamation — including the scientifically invalid Regnerus study – and very aggressively, selfishly and pitilessly wields it in repugnant, morally bankrupt attempts to skewer gay human beings and their rights along with them.

A Change.org petition asks IRS Commissioner Douglas H. Shulman to investigate the Catholic Church for apparent violations of laws applicable to tax-exempt organizations such as the Catholic Church. The full text of the petition is extremely enlightening, and includes this: “The Church in every state very actively criticizes President Obama’s every LGBT initiative, naming him while condemning him, in ways that very evidently are negative endorsements of his candidacy, forbidden under 501(c)(3)-related law.” To sign the petition, go here.

New York City-based novelist and freelance writer Scott Rose’s LGBT-interest by-line has appeared on Advocate.com, PoliticusUSA.com, The New York Blade, Queerty.com, Girlfriends and in numerous additional venues. Among his other interests are the arts, boating and yachting, wine and food, travel, poker and dogs. His “Mr. David Cooper’s Happy Suicide” is about a New York City advertising executive assigned to a condom account.

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Amazon Founder Pledges $2.5 Million to Marriage Battle in Washington State

From Frontiers LA: http://www.frontiersla.com/Blog/FrontierBlog/blogentry.aspx?BlogEntryID=10408454

By Karen Ocamb
7/27/2012

In response to an email plea from one of his first employees, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife MacKenzie pledged to contribute $2.5 million in the fight to retain same sex marriage rights in Washington State.

Last February, Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire signed the marriage equality bill in an emotional ceremony. Two rival groups of marriage opponents immediately tried to collect enough signatures to put an initiative on the ballot to repeal the law—one failed.  However, in June religious activists collected enough signatures to force the question onto the November ballot. Referendum 74 asks voters to approve or reject the marriage equality law. If approved, Washington officially becomes the sixth state, plus the District of Columbia, to recognize gay marriages.

“To get this [pledge] from a straight, married couple sends a powerful message that marriage is seen as a fundamental question of fairness,” Zach Silk, the campaign manager for Washington United for Marriage, told the New York Times Thursday.

Microsoft’s Bill Gates and Steven A. Ballmer have already donated $100,000 to the referendum campaign, the Times reports. But the historic pledge from Bezos, who runs a $48 billion-a-year retail empire, is considered a game-changer.

And the money is much needed, especially considering the cost of TV air time during this election year.  Washington United for Marriage needs to explain why it is important to keep marriage equality in the state—they have not yet noted, for instance, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s announcement on Monday, July 24, the one year anniversary of the Marriage Equality Act, that same sex marriages have equality generated an estimated $259 million in economic impact and $16 million in city revenues. AND they need to explain HOW to vote to retain marriage—that is a vote to APPROVE or yes on Referendum 74.

Continue reading at:  http://www.frontiersla.com/Blog/FrontierBlog/blogentry.aspx?BlogEntryID=10408454

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The Future of Masculinity: Do We Need Real Men – Or Real Human Beings?

From Alternet:  http://www.alternet.org/visions/future-masculinity-do-we-need-real-men-or-real-human-beings

Feminism has re-defined what it means to be female. But there’s still no consensus on what the ideal 21st-century man looks like.

By Abigail Collazo
July 26, 2012

To stay on top of important articles like these, visit Role/Reboot.

This weekend’s New York Times  “Room for Debate”  asks whether today’s men are “manly enough”: “A-list actors are getting facials in  Mansome, Morgan Spurlock’s newest documentary, and pumping their waxed chests in Steven Soderbergh’s  Magic Mike,  one of the summer’s most popular movies. But is all this exfoliated, chiseled perfection what women really want ? And should men really be making it a priority?”

In Charles Mee’s 2001 play  Big Love , one of the title characters delivers a soliloquy in which he bemoans the difficulty for men in living up to gender stereotypes. On one hand, men are expected to be civilized—calm, gracious, and sophisticated. But when violence is called for, and people—especially women—need defending, they expect men to be the rescuers, “going at the target like a bullet…with rage in his heart…with no breaks to hold it.”

The even bigger challenge is presented when the need for such violence has passed. After the conflict, men are expected to automatically revert back to calm, civilized members of society. Women, he argues, have the luxury of deploring the violence of men (because they can depend on that violence when they need its protection) without having to give in to such impulses themselves.

While the play is fictional, the idea that gender stereotypes adversely affect both men and women is very much a reality. I’ve witnessed this countless times from even my most feminist of girlfriends. They want men who are sensitive, who are considerate, who are emotional. But in only in very specific instances. Because at other times, they want the Alpha Male. The one who will fix the drain in the sink and protect them from rapists on the walk home. They want Don Draper.

Continue reading at:  http://www.alternet.org/visions/future-masculinity-do-we-need-real-men-or-real-human-beings

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