The LGBT anti-hate-crime group Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence (GLOV), a program of The DC Center, this week announced its newly elected officers for 2013.
Hassan Naveed and Matthew Corso, longtime members of the organization, were elected as co-chairpersons, while Paul Tupper was elected secretary.
Naveed, the former vice chairperson of GLOV who frequently served as the group's chief media contact, has been a member of GLOV's Critical Incident Team, a task force that examines and tries to combat anti-LGBT hate crimes, and has built strong relationships, particularly with members of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).
Corso, himself the victim of a hate crime in 2008 and a member of The DC Center's board of directors, has had experience helping victims of violent crime and lead a project that produced GLOV's safety-tips packet.
Tupper, as a member of GLOV, helped Naveed and Corso with some of 2012 main projects.
A.J. Singletary, GLOV's outgoing chairperson, announced via email he will remain an active member of the organization, but is not currently serving in a specific leadership role.
Naveed also released a statement, setting forth the organization's goals for 2013.
''GLOV will build upon its past successes of advancing LGBT rights, increasing incident reporting, and providing greater support for hate crime victims,'' Naveed said. ''GLOV's new leadership plans to develop strategies expanding the organization's programming and impact on the LGBT community, while continuing its unequivocal commitment to safety through education outreach, advocacy and victim assistance.''...more
So this week finally saw a bout of bipartisan movement in the Senate with the introduction of an immigration-reform plan. This is exciting news for me, in part because my general political principles include having the most open immigration policy possible — despite the outcries of regressive tea partiers, the desire to become an American by choice rather than birth is one of the most vital parts of the American story.
But in this case, the political is also the personal. I know a number of people who are undocumented, including some who came here as children and are as American as you or I, because being American isn't determined by accent. And, of course, most of these people I know are gay so one of the most readily available paths to citizenship — marriage — has been closed to them. Suddenly, the pathway may be opening.
So it was good to see Republican Sen. John McCain bring his trademark steadiness and common sense to this important national issue.
It's also a good thing I don't laugh with my fingers, because I never would've gotten that sentence out.
What actually happened was that McCain once again came across the idea of equal treatment for LGBT citizens and stuck a finger in its eye, calling it a ''red flag'' and an issue that's ''not of paramount importance.'' McCain's political ideology, which can charitably be described as malleable but more accurately described as bitterly erratic, has no room for LGBT equality. You can't forget his vituperative crusade against DADT repeal — a repeal he once hinted he would support, until he lost an election and chose spite over reason.
Then South Carolina's Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham — who by a not-at-all unspoken rule of left-wing opinion writing is always to be linked with fey verbs and adjectives, so I'm going with ''prance'' — pranced in to provide support for his best bud McCain, saying, ''Why don't we just put legalized abortion in there and round it all out?'' In addition to keeping it classy, you can be sure McCain and Graham will take that ''red flag'' on the idea of fair treatment for gay, lesbian and bisexual international couples to continue their ridiculous campaign against all things Obama.
I've railed against the gerontocracy running the Senate before, though perhaps some might think I'm joking. I'm not. It's a sad and pathetic fact of life that our country — browner, more open to women and more multilingual every day — is still held hostage to a group of old, white men. That's not an ageist slam; I've had relatives who were past 90 and were sharper of mind than some senators in their sixth and seventh terms. But for every exception like the late Daniel Inouye, there are plenty more Strom Thurmonds and Robert Byrds. It's yet another reason to be excited by Newark Mayor Cory Booker's decision to launch a Democratic primary challenge to 89-year-old New Jersey Sen. Frank Launtenberg. We pretty desperately need a government that's at least passingly similar to its people.
As for immigration reform, I'm still excited by the overall possibility, though at this point it remains a big basket of chickens that haven't hatched. Even without the attempts of McCain to turn President Obama's inclusion of LGBT equality into another battle, there's enough deep-seated hatred of immigrants on the far, far right of the Republican Party to sink or delay reform even if Rush Limbaugh asks them to take one for the team.
Sean Bugg is the co-publisher of Metro Weekly. He can be reached at sbugg@MetroWeekly.com. Follow him on Twitter @seanbugg....more
President Obama's second inaugural address charted a confident mainstream agenda for his second term. In doing so he rebuked hostility toward science, defended the social safety net as a source of national strength, and rejected the false theme of "makers" versus "takers." He coined a shimmering phrase as he invoked the principle of equality that "guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall." On the right to marry, he said "the love we commit to one another must be equal."
Naturally, he did not satisfy everyone, even among progressives. The naysaying went something like this: He's a lame duck; nothing will get through Congress; he's all talk and no fight; he's lip-synching like Beyoncé.
Perhaps we are so used to fighting the opposition that we don't recognize an ally when we see one. In fact, it was an upbeat week. Obama's outgoing and incoming secretaries of state delivered smackdowns to tea party Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.); the GOP-controlled House blinked by voting to suspend the debt ceiling for three months; and Secretary of Defense Panetta lifted the ban on women in combat roles.
Obama applied a sharp historical sense to the GOP's use of mass incitement to enrich plutocrats: "The patriots of 1776 did not fight to replace the tyranny of a king with the privileges of a few or the rule of a mob. They gave to us a republic." He beautifully echoed his greatest predecessor: "Through blood drawn by lash and blood drawn by sword, we learned that no union founded on the principles of liberty and equality could survive half-slave and half-free. We made ourselves anew, and vowed to move forward together."
One sign that Obama will use the bully pulpit more effectively is his decision to keep his campaign machine running. This is crucial given the evident determination by Republicans to learn nothing from their loss in November other than to avoid blurting out their extreme beliefs, and to try new schemes for rigging elections.
How Obama will fare with obstructionist House Republicans remains to be seen; but we cannot sit back as if it were someone else's fight. We have our work cut out at all levels of government.
My own latest example consisted of editing the 2013 policy brief for D.C.'s Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, in preparation for an upcoming special election for a city council seat. Every election is a chance to educate candidates and get answers from them on LGBT issues. GLAA's brief has a list of action items; we deleted those that had been resolved, and added new ones.
That's the life of an activist: There is always more to be done. Trans activist and Gulf War veteran Autumn Sandeen last week noted that "President Obama isn't including the vision of equality for trans people in the national civil rights dialogue in the same way he's included the vision of equality for gay people." But she also listed a dozen pro-transgender actions Obama had taken. That is what an activist does who wants to move forward and not just preen like a senator at a hearing. In GLAA's brief, we commend various D.C. officials for doing things we requested.
There are no perfect allies, and the pace of change can be frustrating. But it only makes sense to show respect to people who have helped you and whom you're asking to do more. Smart political activism is not therapy. It is work.
There is plenty of work for all of us. It was well said by our levelheaded president in defiance of a paranoid and pessimistic age: "You and I, as citizens, have the power to set this country's course." He didn't say it was easy. Let's get to it.
Richard J. Rosendall is a writer and activist. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org....more
The Canadian hockey team invited transgender athlete Cory Oskam to skate alongside Canucks goalie Cory Schneider during the national anthem on the teen's 16th birthday.
The new documentary I Am Divine will screen at South by Southwest, along with docs on gay seniors and porn star Buck Angel.
Supporters of California's ban on marriage equality reported fundraising shortfalls for the third consecutive year.
After the the plight of the American Bulldog mix was seen by millions online, Stephanie Fryns, a veterinary technician from Jackson, stepped up this afternoon and adopted him from Jackson TN Euthanasia.
Naming him Elton, Fryns, who already owns four dogs said that she had planned to rescue him even before his story had traveled around the Internet.
He was dumped there because according to the owner of the shelter, the dog's master noticed him 'hunched over' another male dog, which led him to assume he was gay.
Yesterday a Facebook user became of aware of his plight after seeing his picture on the shelter's timeline and contacted Jackson TN Euthanasia to discover the reason why he had been left there to be destroyed.
'His owner threw him away bc he refuses to have a 'gay' dog!' wrote a user who calls herself 'Jackson Madison Rabies Control Stalker'.
'Don't let this gorgeous dog die [because] his owner is ignorant of normal dog behavior! He's in kennel 10L and he WILL be put down tomorrow bc there is no room at the inn!'
Following an outcry over the Internet numerous people including Stephanie Fryns arrived at the shelter this morning to adopt the unloved dog.
Even as Campus Pride and so many in the community protested Chick-fil-A and its funding of groups like Family Research Council, Eagle Forum and Exodus International, the funding of these groups had already stopped. Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-A could have noted this publicly earlier. Instead, they chose to be patient, to engage in private dialogue, to reach understanding,and to share proof with me when it was official. There was no "caving"; there were no "concessions." There was, in my view, conscience." I think Chick-fil-A has stopped giving $6 million + to those groups, banking on the fact they can increase sales with gay people!
Geier tried to get away, and Harris allegedly shook him and punched him in the face. Geier had to have surgery to repair broken orbital bones in his face. Harris claims Geier punched him first.
âThis really is a pure self-defense case. He was attacked,â Cintean said.
Great new track from British ethereal wave band Esben & the Witch. Extra points for a pas de deux straight out of Scruff. Video after the jump.
The post New & Underground: “Despair” by Esben and the Witch appeared first on GaySocialites.com: More Than Just Gay News for Gay Men....
âRidiculous theatreâ, a tradition of queer theatre born in New York in the 1960s, has its own particular acting style that mixes high camp, high energy, maniacal precision and an almost supernatural conviction. Director John V. N. Philip’s entertaining revival of Camille by Charles Ludlam â" Ridiculous theatre’s most accomplished playwright â" succeeds best when [...]
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The current Broadway revival of Drood is good old-fashioned music hall fun: Rupert Holmes, the musical’s author and composer, has set the Dickens whodunit in the context of a Victorian British music hall. The new cast recording captures that quite well. Sometimes even improves upon it â" the patter song âBoth Sides of the Coinâ [...]
“Manhattan Madame” Kristin Davis is the latest candidate to throw her name into the race for New York City Mayor. Davis is best known for running the escort agency that brought down former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, and this isn’t her first time running for political office. Since being convicted on felony charges for [...]
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The Boy Scouts of America might be pulling a 180 on their antigay policies. Boy Scout officials are now considering allowing local councils to set their own policies regarding the inclusion of members of the gay community. The move comes after many sponsors decided to pull their financial support from the organization. “The Boy Scouts [...]
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