Orlando – Call it what it is

My sincerest apologies for not addressing what happened at Pulse in Orlando, Florida on the night of June 11/12 before now. I had a very busy weekend and didn’t have much computer time. If I had more patience typing out posts on my phone, I would’ve done it sooner.

I admit that I haven’t read much about the event, other than to know it’s been called the worst mass murder of innocent individuals in US history. 50 souls horrifically torn from this world – from their lovers and friend and family – by one individual so full of hate that he felt some need to do this. I admit whole-heartedly that I am glad beyond words that the S.W.A.T. team was able to end his life as well, because scum like that doesn’t deserve a “fair trial.” You take lives, you give up your own. Period.

My heart goes out to the lovers, friends and families of the victims who have to try picking up the pieces after this kind of devastation and attempt to move on with their lives. I don’t envy the tasks of the officers who must sort through the aftermath and then share with those left behind what little news they may have.

Everyone is so gung-ho to scream about him being a radical. Reports are now that he may have been a sympathizer, if not outright radical. That’s fine, whatever. But the fact remains that no one is calling this exactly what it is: the biggest HATE crime in US history. Whether he was radical or not, his religion taught him to hate. And it’s not just Muslims who teach their followers to hate LGBT people; Christians are just as guilty of spreading that hate. But it’s easier for Christians to just point the finger at the Muslim and say, “But it wasn’t us.” It wasn’t them this time, though I’m sure plenty of them are thrilled to bits that the shooting happened at a gay nightclub. We like to think that terrorists are only born and created in the Middle East, but they are born and live here too. And I don’t mean just the Muslims in the US who are feeling sympathetic toward what ISIS is doing. Look at what happened in Oregon earlier this year with the “well armed militia”. That was terrorism, too, whether you want to admit it or not.

This epidemic has to stop, but I doubt it will.

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Fake News Websites Are Pumping Out More Anti-Trans Hoaxes Than Ever

It amazes me that real news sites ignore the fact that the fake news sites are making them look bad. So much misinformation abounds that people are losing trust in even the real news because people feel they don’t care any more than the fake sites do. It’s sickening. I think I’m going to add a new feature to the blog: a list of fake news sites. I started a list at work, so I’ll just go from there and add this latest to the bunch.

On Saturday, a report began spreading online that a transgender woman was shot and killed after she followed another woman into a Colorado department store bathroom.

“The transgender woman began raising her voice and using explicit language towards [the other woman] while continuing to follow her into the restroom,” the story said. It reported that Karen Workman allegedly fired three shots from a firearm she had in her bag, killing Donna Wright.

Full story

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Jelly Belly Chairman Doesn’t Think Transgender Kids Deserve Equal Rights

I guess, rightfully, if a child can know at a young age that they prefer one sex over the other (I knew around age 10), they know their gender is wrong. I totally believe they should have rights – we all should.

Of course not giving Jelly Belly my business is quite easy as I dislike jellybeans. 🙂

Et tu, Jelly Belly?

The chairman of America’s lovable jelly bean brand apparently has helped fund efforts to repeal trans-friendly legal protections in California.

In September, Herman G. Rowland Sr., the chairman of the board of Jelly Belly Candy Company, Inc., donated $5,000 to Privacy for All Students, a coalition fighting for a referendum effort to repeal transgender rights legislation California Assembly Bill 1266.

The bill, signed into law by California Gov. Jerry Brown in August, requires the state’s transgender students to be allowed to “participate in sex-segregated school programs and activities, including athletic teams and competitions, and use facilities consistent with his or her gender identity, irrespective of the gender listed on the pupil’s records.”

Full story

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How Unjust Family Laws Are Keeping LGBT Parents Away From Their Children

Allison’s story is so heartbreaking. Her ex-wife is doing more damage to those two children than anything Allison has gone through. Sure her son lost a father, but by Allison being cut off from his life completely, he has no one to fill in. And having a father figure isn’t a dire necessity. There are plenty of heterosexual single women who raise sons with no issues. I hope somehow Allison’s ex sees the light and knows the damage she’s doing before the kids turn on her.

Last week, Allison Woolbert saw her children for the first time in two and a half years. Her daughter made two paintings for her to mark the occasion: One said, “This is the Day,” and the other said, “I Love You.”

Woolbert, a transgender woman in New Jersey who transitioned several years ago, was overjoyed seeing her daughter and son again, now 12 and 15 years old. But she missed out on a lot of important time during their adolescence, as did they.

“I was married for 13 years, as a man, to a woman,” Woolbert said. By the end of the relationship, she was deeply depressed and suicidal. Woolbert had been seeing a therapist for five years, but remained completely closeted about having gender dysphoria, a condition marked by identification with a different gender than the one assigned at birth.

With regard to making the decision to transition, “I don’t think people know the pain,” Woolbert said. “I didn’t want to transition. I did everything I could to avoid it for 45 years.”

Woolbert was afraid when she came out to her wife. She feared losing her family, her means of employment, and her kids, whom she described as being “everything” to her. A technology professional who was unemployed at the time, she was afraid people wouldn’t hire her or be willing to do business with her.

Her wife told Woolbert that she wasn’t a lesbian and that she refused to live in the house with another woman. “She said she didn’t want to be my friend. She said, ‘Here’s what’s going to happen: You’re going to go back to work, and you’re going to forget about this transition…or you’re going to move out, and I am going to take everything.”

It was a terrible ultimatum. But, Woolbert said, “There comes a time to make a decision, and mine was, ‘Do I continue living [as a woman], in the hopes my children will understand me some day, or do I not continue living at all, which will only hurt my children and increase their chances of suicide someday?’”

Full story

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Court decides if gay juror can be taken off case

I served on a jury in January of this year. I know both sides do what they can to stack the jury in their favour. It’s part of the legal process. Naturally, both sides are going to want people most likely to rule in their favour, so no matter how unfair this seems, it’s part of our legal system. The reasons given for his removal are all valid reasons. It’s not really fair to either side if you cannot be impartial. And in my opinion, the fact that this juror works for the court system is probably the #1 reason he was removed from the jury. They don’t want anyone who works in the legal system on a jury, no matter how insignificant their job may be. I think they view that as coming close to having a trial between three lawyers – one for the defence, one for the prosecution and one for the jury. The other reasons are probably just supporting reasons.

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A multibillion dollar case between two giant pharmaceutical companies grappling over arcane antitrust issues has unexpectedly turned into a gay rights legal imbroglio that raises questions over whether lawyers can bounce potential jurors solely based on their sexual orientation.

The case before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco on Wednesday centers on whether Abbott Laboratories broke antitrust laws when it increased the price of its popular and vital AIDS drug Norvir by 400 percent in 2007. But broader public attention likely will be given to the three-judge panel’s look at whether Abbott wrongfully removed a juror in the case brought by competitor SmithKlineBeecham.

The cost increase angered many in the gay community. SmithKlineBeecham, meanwhile, claims it was meant to harm the launch of its new AIDS treatment, which requires the use of Norvir. And the company contends “Juror B” was removed simply because he was gay.

“It’s a big deal,” said Vik Amar, University of California, Davis professor. “The headlines from this case are going to be about antitrust law — it will be about sexual orientation in the jury pool.”

Before trials, lawyers for both sides are allowed to use several “preemptory challenges” each to remove someone from the jury pool without legal justification.

Full story

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I Love Vince Gill

I know without a shadow of a doubt that I am 100% Lesbian, but after reading this article (haven’t seen the video because it’s blocked by servers at work) I can say that I love Vince Gill. 😀 He had the balls to confront WBC who were protesting at a recent concert of his.

This is the best part:

“Vince Gill, what in the world are you doing out here?” a WBC member can be heard asking, in a video of the confrontation uploaded to YouTube. “But, more importantly, what are you doing with another man’s wife?”

“I came out to see what hatred really looked like in the face,” Gill responded.

If you want to know what hatred looks like, look at every single member of WBC. They epitomize hatred. They love it, they feed on it, they wholly embrace it. They teach it to their children.

Full story

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Tumblr Mobile Filter Anti-Gay?

I’ve never seen the use of Tumblr, but I know it’s popular.

News that Tumblr’s mobile filter was blocking searches for such tags as #gay, #lesbian, or #bisexual on its iOS app as part of a new porn restrictions was immediately controversial. Users wondered how it was possible that searches related to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender themes were NSFW and subject to prohibition.

But the truth behind the filtering may have more to do with Tumblr’s recent sale to Yahoo! and its desire to adhere to the standards of Apple’s App Store, than an attempt to block any potentially racy communities.

Full story

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Violence mars first gay parade in Montenegro

So sad that people always resort to violence as a solution to things they don’t agree with. 😦

BUDVA, Montenegro (Reuters) – Police clashed with anti-gay protesters in Montenegro on Wednesday as they tried to disrupt the first gay pride parade to be held in the staunchly conservative Balkan country that is in talks to join the European Union.

Around 200 demonstrators hurled stones, bottles and flares at policemen in the coastal town of Budva who were keeping them separate from around 40 marchers wearing shirts bearing the colors of the rainbow, the symbol of the gay rights movement.

At least ten demonstrators were arrested and several marchers were slightly injured, according to police.

Protesters chanted “Kill the gays” and carried banners that read “Only healthy Montenegro”, a Reuters reporter on the scene said.

Artists Hack Dictionaries To Change The Definition Of Marriage

There’s a video to watch on the original story at the Huffington Post website which will be referenced below the quote. I think this is FAB!

The definition of marriage has been greatly contested by progressives who want the delineation changed from a union between a “man and woman” or “husband and wife” to a union between “two people.”

Now, a group of anonymous artists are taking matters into their own hands and literally changing the definition, one dictionary at a time.

These artists, working under the mission title “HACKmarriage,” have been going to bookstores and libraries around San Francisco and covering the formal definition of marriage with a sticker featuring an amended version, according to Animal New York.

Currently, the Oxford American Dictionary defines marriage as “the legal relationship between a husband and wife.” Merriam-Webster includes “the state of being united to a person of the same sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage.”

Full story

Eric Ohena Lembembe, Gay Rights Activist, Tortured And Killed

I will never ever EVER understand why violence is always the answer to any problem or disagreement for these people. It’s no wonder there’s always fighting in African countries. They think the ONLY solution to any problem is to just kill the opposition.

DAKAR, Senegal — A prominent gay rights activist in Cameroon was tortured and killed just weeks after issuing a public warning about the threat posed by “anti-gay thugs,” Human Rights Watch said.

Friends discovered the body of Eric Ohena Lembembe at his home in the capital, Yaounde, on Monday evening after he was unreachable for two days, the rights group said in a statement Tuesday.

One friend said Lembembe’s neck and feet looked broken and that he had been burned with an iron.

Lembembe was among the most prominent activists in one of Africa’s most hostile countries for sexual minorities. First as a journalist and later as executive director of CAMFAIDS, a Yaounde-based human rights organization, he documented violence, blackmail and arrests targeting members of Cameroon’s gay community. He was also a regular contributor to the Erasing 76 Crimes blog, which focuses on countries where homosexuality is illegal, and he wrote several chapters of a book released in February on the global gay rights movement titled “From Wrongs to Gay Rights.”

Full story

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