LGBTI History Month- Armisted Maupin

Armistead MaupinArmistead Maupin – October 24

“Being gay has taught me tolerance, compassion and humility.”

Armistead Maupin ranks among the most celebrated authors of the LGBT experience. To many in Maupin’s hometown of Raleigh, North Carolina—including Maupin’s one-time employer, the segregationist Senator Jesse Helms—homosexuality was even more  blasphemous than racial integration. Maupin recounted about Helms, “Homosexuality, he told me, was the most heinous sin a man could commit. I nodded dutifully and kept my mouth shut.” (more)

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Sri Lanka tells the United Nations that LGBTIs are protected in its constitution

ANDREW POTTS | Gay Star News | October 22, 2014

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa

Photo by Presidential Secretariate of Sri Lanka

The Sri Lankan Government of President Mahinda Rajapaksa has admitted for the first time this month that its constitution protects people from discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity.

Representatives of the government made the admission to the United Nations Human Rights Committee after being questioned on the issue.

‘Please indicate the measures taken to protect persons from stigmatization and discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity, and indicate whether they are protected by the constitutional provisions on non-discrimination,’ Sri Lanka was asked by the OHCHR Experts Committee.

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Las Vegas Wedding Chapel Owner Says She Won’t Marry Gay Couples

On Top Magazine | October 23, 2014

An owner of a wedding chapel in Las Vegas says she won’t marry gay and lesbian couples.

Dolly Deleon, owner of the Vegas Wed Chapel, told Nevada Public Radio that her wedding chapel was a business, but added that the quick implementation of a ruling striking down the state’s ban on gay marriage surprised her. It should be noted that Nevada officials stopped defending the state’s ban in February.

“You have a business, I mean, it is a business, it is not a church. Shouldn’t your services be available to all customers with the ability to pay?” Deleon, a non-denominational Christian minister, was asked.

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Williams Institute: Upcoming Events

Upcoming Event

Writing about Same-Sex Desire in the Later Roman Empire

Monday, Nov. 3, 2014
UCLA Royce Hall 314
6:00 p.m. – Panel
7:00 p.m. – Reception

8:30 p.m. – Dinner

Click here to RSVP

Join Us

New York
Fall Reception

Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. – Panel
7:00 p.m. – Reception

8:30 p.m. – Dinner

Click here to RSVP

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Williams Institute: Women in Leadership

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North Carolina judge resigns in protest after Supreme Court shoots down same-sex marriage ban

 | Raw Story | October 23, 2014

Female minister uses a tablet PC to perform a gay marriage ceremony (Shutterstock)

Swain County Magistrate Judge Gilbert Breedlove said that “we were directed we had to perform the marriages” after the Supreme Court struck down the state’s marriage ban on October 10, 2014. “That was just something I couldn’t do because of my religious beliefs,” he continued.

“I was Christian when I started. Then, the law didn’t require me to perform something that was against my religious belief. Now that law has changed its requirements,” Breedlove said. “The whole Bible from front-to-end states that a marriage is between a man and a wife; any other type of sexual activity other than that is what is defined as fornication.”

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Fracking poison test: Scientists check water contamination with new device

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Defense contractor blamed for cancer cases increase

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How the Supreme Court Made a Mess of Our Voting System

Michael Waldman | Brennan Center for Justice | Reader Supported News | October 23, 2014

lexis de Tocqueville famously observed in 1835, “Scarcely any political question arises in the United States that is not resolved, sooner or later, into a judicial question.” That certainly describes the grand struggle over voting rights now unfolding in courtrooms across the country. And when it comes to who can vote and when, a clear message is hard to discern. In recent days, rulings, appeals and motions have pinballed around the system, with the U.S. Supreme Court answering emergency pleas, allowing some changes to take effect and temporarily blocking others, while key appeals head their way. The latest lurch: In a decision emailed out at 5 a.m. Saturday morning, the justices let Texas implement its controversial voter ID law, the nation’s strictest, just two days before early voting begins in the state.

Amid the confusion, an important new element has emerged. The breakthrough? Facts. Two powerful judicial opinions—one from a Texas trial judge, another from an esteemed appeals court jurist—and a landmark government study have shed new light on the costs and consequences of restrictive voting laws. They answer some key questions: Are these laws malevolent? (In Texas, at least, yes.) Do they provide a benefit that outweighs their cost? (No.) Do they suppress the vote? (Alarmingly, it seems, yes.) And can we prevent fraud without disenfranchising Americans? (Yes, absolutely.)

In a zone foggy with legal rhetoric, these three documents will—and should—live on beyond the 2014 election cycle. They might even help shape a new legal regime to protect voters while protecting against fraud. They’re worth a close read.

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Justice Dept. ‘Exasperated’ by Local Probe of Michael Brown Shooting

Julia Edwards, Curtis Skinner, Carey Gillam, Susan Heavey | Reuters | Reader Supported News | Ocober 23, 2014

ALSO SEE: Expert: Autopsy Doesn’t Show if Brown Went for Gun

ALSO SEE: Activists Demand Comprehensive Federal Data on Americans Killed by Police

.S. Justice Department officials on Thursday criticized local authorities’ investigation of the shooting death of an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Missouri, saying the case had been handled in a “selective” and “inappropriate” manner.

The department’s criticism comes after the official St. Louis County autopsy of Michael Brown, 18, who was shot by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson on Aug. 9, was leaked to media on Wednesday.

The autopsy report, obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and published on its website, suggested Brown sustained a gunshot wound to the hand from close range and came as a grand jury considered whether Wilson should face charges.

“The department considers the selective release of information in this investigation to be irresponsible and highly troubling,” Justice Department spokeswoman Dena Iverson said.

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