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

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

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

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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