The Problem of Editorial Neutrality—Fabulous or Just LGBT?


Stephanie Donald | LGBT Today | April 14, 2013

I frequently talk with my friend, Brody Levesque, the Washington Bureau Chief of LGBTQ-Nation regarding the subject of editorial neutrality and making our news the simple reporting of facts, as we were taught to do when we were in school.Cart_before_the_horse

Brody is a strong believer that “we don’t publish ‘pink’ or ‘gay’ news. We simply publish ‘the news’ and it happens to cater to the LGBT community.”

My feeling is that his statement is just twisting things around so that he can justify the horse pulling the cart instead of the other way around.

My take on this is that by our serving a specific audience, we can’t help but slant the news we’re carrying, even if we express absolutely no opinions in the body of the news.

Brody also doesn’t like activists who try to run magazines and news outlets and of course, I am an activist who tries to run both a news outlet and give intelligent editorial essays from some of the best minds in the LGBT activist, Whimsical_Jackhistorical, cultural, satirical and gay pioneer world.

I tried to make LGBT-Today survive for two years on those editorials alone until I realized that intellect in our community was the minority and “give-me-the-short-take” on the news was the majority of our community.

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The Anti-Choice Monster


Ari Rabin-Havt | Media Matters for America | Reader Supported News | April 14, 2013

ermit Gosnell, currently on trial for murder, appears to be a monster. There are no adjectives strong enough to describe the horrors that a grand jury says took place at the Women’s Medical Society.

In recent weeks, anti-choice media figures have been agitating for more coverage of the Gosnell trial in the mainstream press, hoping to inject into public discourse the idea that all clinics performing abortions are the monstrous dens depicted in stark detail in the grand jury report.

I agree – the Gosnell trial does deserve more coverage. Not as a stain on abortion providers but as an indictment of the outcome if the anti-choice movement achieves its goals. Far from the practices of well-established medical facilities, the Women’s Medical Society was the modern-day back alley, like those in the pre-Roe era where desperate women were butchered.

The Women’s Medical Society’s “real business,” the grand jury report explicitly states, “was not health; it was profit. There were two primary parts to the operation. By day it was a prescription mill; by night an abortion mill.”

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What Actually Happened to That Same-Sex Couple in the Missouri Hospital


Zack Ford | ThinkProgress | Reader Supported News | April 14, 2013

here has been a lot of speculation as to what actually transpired when Roger Gorley was arrested away from his husband Allen’s bedside in a Missouri hospital earlier this week. Despite the fact Roger and Allen have granted each other power of attorney for medical decisions, the Research Medical Center claimed that Roger was “disruptive and belligerent,” arguing that is why the police arrested him and removed him from the facility.

Now, Roger’s daughter Amanda has shared a detailed account of what transpired that paints a picture even more offensive than many may have imagined. The full account can be read here as well as some additional details she shared in an interview with blogger John Aravosis. Here is a breakdown of the family’s circumstances and what transpired in that hospital room according to Amanda:

The Couple’s Background

  • Allen suffers from severe depression and is currently undergoing electro-shock treatment (ECT) twice a month because his medications are no longer allowing him to function normally.
  • Allen has specifically excluded his family from having any say over his medical decisions because they have not been understanding of the impact of his depression.
  • Not only have Roger and Allen granted each other power of attorney, but they are known throughout the hospital as a proud gay couple because they are regularly there for Allen’s treatments.
  • Allen’s family has not been supportive of his relationship with Roger.

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President Obama, One Corporate Puppet Among Many


Carl Gibson | Reader Supported News | April 14, 2013

his year, the New Deal turned 80. And those same New Deal programs championed by FDR, a Democrat, defined the bedrock of the American left political achievements for all others who would seek the presidency. Now, the corporate takeover of our government has proven that those New Deal programs can be slowly dismantled by a Democrat president, as the Obama administration fully digs its heels in on an austerity agenda.

He’s not the one running the show, but rather, his strings are being pulled by Wall Street bankers and hedge fund managers like Pete Peterson, who is most of the wallet behind the corporate-funded “Fix the Debt” sham campaign. Even one of Fix the Debt’s key spokesmen admitted that their goal was to create an “artificial crisis” that would justify gutting Social Security.

Jack Lew, Obama’s Treasury secretary, is leading the administration’s doublespeak on austerity. In Europe, he’s told political leaders to lighten up on austerity measures. But in America, Lew is telling Congress to endorse President Obama’s proposals to cut earned benefits for vulnerable Americans who need them to survive, even though Social Security doesn’t contribute to the deficit. Lew is also a pawn of the corporate and financial string-pullers, coming from Citigroup before his years in the Clinton administration’s division of budget. He was even guaranteed a bonus by Citigroup if he was able to secure a “high-level” federal job.

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Pope faces tough decisions as Vatican reforms loom


NICOLE WINFIELD | Associated Press | Yahoo News | April 13, 2013

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis has spent much of his first month as pope charming ordinary Catholics with his ordinary yet extraordinary papal ways and making clear he is very much the boss when it comes to decisions as small as the shoes he wears to where he rests his head at night.

In the coming months, he’ll face decisions of far greater import as he responds to demands from cardinals in far-flung dioceses and Vatican officials at home for an overhaul of the Holy See bureaucracy, the dysfunctional family business he inherited one month ago Saturday.

Given Francis’ governing style and track record, it’s likely he’ll make these choices with an eye to efficiency, and very much alone.

Prelates are demanding term limits on Vatican jobs to prevent priests from becoming career bureaucrats. They want consolidated financial reports to remove the cloak of secrecy from the Vatican’s murky finances. And they want regular Cabinet meetings where department heads actually talk to one another to make the Vatican a help to the church’s evangelizing mission, not a hindrance.

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Democratic Convergence: Hillary ’16, Obama ’14


 | LA Progressive | April 12, 2013

There is a powerful and profound convergence of interest between Team Obama, Team Clinton, and Democratic leaders in the House and Senate.

The prime directive for the leadership strata of Democrats in Washington and the Democratic base nationally is clear and well understood by most national political players, if not yet the political media. This three-stage convergence of interest is as follows:

First, the goal is to elect a Democratic House and preserve the Democratic Senate in 2014. This would effectively power-start a third term for President Obama that would begin after the election of a Democratic House and Senate in 2014 and conclude with the inauguration of the next president in January 2017, which would set the stage for a ground-shaking, history-making and FDR-magnitude-realigning Democratic campaign in 2016 and a power-started Hillary Clinton presidency with even more House and Senate Democrats by January 2017.

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Drones and Law Enforcement in America: The Unmanned Police Surveillance State


Greg Guma | Global Research | April 12, 2013

The US is at the dawn of “a new era in police surveillance,” the Associated Press revealed casually last week. In a Chicago-based story about the growing use of drones and other sophisticated, unmanned aircraft for aerial surveillance, it noted that the Congressional Research Service considers their future use “bound only by human ingenuity.”The story focused on one Illinois legislator who has proposed a limit on how far law enforcement agencies can go.

But bills have been introduced in almost 40 states, and the Bill of Rights Defense Committee has two model ordinances to assist communities in the emerging movement against domestic surveillance drones. This isn’t science fiction, although the threat of an emerging Surveillance State does figure in my forthcoming novel, Dons of Time.

As I learned while researching, drones already fly pretty freely in US airspace. Law enforcement groups use them for search and rescue operations, for security along the border (mainly the one with Mexico so far), for weather research and scientific data collection. In fact, last year Congress authorized the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to open the nation’s airspace to widespread drone flights by 2015.

The FAA estimates that more than 7,000 civilian drones could be surfing the sky by 2020.

As Bill of Rights Defense Committee Executive Director Shahid Buttar explains, “Because the legal landscape governing drones is essentially barren, law enforcement agencies around the country are currently making policy to suit their interests. But we live in a constitutional Republic, meaning that We the People hold the opportunity — and responsibility — to petition our local representatives for legal protections that Congress is too timid to provide.”

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Why We Want to Keep Church and State as Far Away from Each Other as Possible


Paul Krassner | AlterNet | April 13, 2013

 

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Last month in London, an atheist church was launched with a reading from  Alice in Wonderland, a Powerpoint presentation by a particle physicist explaining the origins of antimatter, and a congregational singalong with songs by Stevie Wonder and Queen. Indeed, we’ve come a long way, baby. Personally, I stopped believing in God when I was a kid and the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima. How, I thought, could an omnipotent deity allow that to happen?

I was militant in my disbelief until the 1960s. After all, Martin Luther King Jr. was a Christian leader, but I was inspired by his actions, whereas George Lincoln Rockwell, head of the American Nazi Party, labeled himself an agnostic, yet I abhorred his actions. I could no longer judge people by what they believed, but rather by whether they were kind or cruel to others. As simple as that. However, I’ve remained adamant about the separation of church and state.

*   *   *

My definition of a religion is a cult that’s exempt from paying taxes. Scientology, for example. L. Ron Hubbard’s book  Dianetics became a bestseller with the aid of a Scientologist employed at the  New York Times who leaked the names of those bookstores around the country that provide the basis for the  Times’ bestseller list. Hubbard’s thesis was that traumatic shock occurs not only during early childhood, but also during the pre-natal stage.

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Republican Party Says No to Same-Sex Marriage


 | TIME | April 12, 2013

The Republican National Committee voted unanimously Friday to reaffirm the  party’s commitment to upholding the definition of marriage as between one man  and one woman, upending party efforts to grow support among younger voters.

A resolution introduced Wednesday by Michigan committeeman Dave Agema, who  came under fire last month for posting an article describing gays as “filthy” on  his Facebook page, passed the full RNC by a voice vote and without debate. A  second resolution reaffirming “core values” of the party — including opposition  to same-sex marriage — was also passed.

RNC officials collected the resolutions, which were opposed privately by some  committee members, together with a resolution honoring Ron Paul and another  calling for a sustained investment in the U.S. space program — an effort to  avoid debate on the floor.

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The Bible can’t be the basis for denying rights


Pittsburg Post Gazette | April 9, 2013

In his April 3 letter “Same-Sex Sinfulness,” concerning marriage of same-sex  couples, Daniel J. Robinson asked some questions.

First he asks, “How can anyone argue with the sweet commercials calling for  gay marriage?” and later asks, “How could there possibly be a right for gay  marriage?” Arguments against the freedom to marry have pretty much boiled down  to the one Mr. Robinson offers: The Bible tells me so.

I accept that some read the Bible his way, but more and more believers find  support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Jesus’ commandment  to love your neighbor as yourself. There are many ways to understand  Scripture.

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