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Coffee Party Equality
LGBT news and information, and community for The Coffee Party
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Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters: Mormon Church trying to overturn marriage equality in Maryland

Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters: Mormon Church trying to overturn marriage equality in Maryland | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

via Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters


From the Huffington Post comes this unfortunate bit of news:


Mormons are gathering signatures to bring a referendum on Maryland's marriage equality law to the ballot in November, as the state's pro-gay marriage coalition hires a new leader and a recent poll shows more support in Maryland for the law.


The Washington Blade reports that Mormon Church members are actively working to overturn the law legalizing same-sex marriage that was signed by Gov. Martin O'Malley in March, making Maryland the eighth state to legalize gay marriage. Maryland's law will go into effect in January 2013, if the state's voters don't repeal the law in November. [MORE]

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Louden Clear with Jeanene Louden Thursdays at 2:30 ET, 11:30 PT

Louden Clear with Jeanene Louden  Thursdays at 2:30 ET, 11:30 PT | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

This two part hour will begin with a discussion of several  of the COLLABORATION efforts now underway between Coffee Party USA and other groups involved in the American Democracy Movement, and end with a discussion on GRATITUDE.


Next week's focus: April 28th National March Against the War on Women in all 50 States! 


Link to the live broadcast or the pod cast HERE.

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Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson: NOM Insults Dr. King's Dream

Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson: NOM Insults Dr. King's Dream | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by REV DR NANCY WILSON, Global Leader,

Metropolitan Community Churches,

huffintonpost.com


Our nation marked April 3 as a tragic day in our country's history, when one of our most historic leaders, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on a Memphis hotel balcony. We mark the day; we do not celebrate it. But we dare not forget that this country's pattern of racism is not over.


Last week the need for freedom and for challenging racism arose again. Leaders of a group that calls itself the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) were exposed for their plan to manipulate the religious sensibilities and identities of African Americans and Latino Americans so that marriage for loving, same-sex couples would become a wedge issue that would divide the vote of people of color in the upcoming election.


Through crass manipulation of people's deepest desire to serve God and be loyal to their communities, NOM hopes to compel people of color to make condemnation of loving gay and lesbian couples a marker for religious and racial/ethnic identity. This strategy aims to divide the votes of African Americans and Hispanic Americans -- and ignores the fact that all families and communities include lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. [MORE]

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Update: Miss Universe to allow trans woman back into pageant

Update: Miss Universe to allow trans woman back into pageant | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by EESHA PANDIT, feministing.com


Previously disqualified contestant, Jenna Talakova, will be allowed back into the international pageant according to a statement released late last night by the Miss Universe Organization.


In the statement, the Miss Universe Organization said Ms. Talackova can compete, provided “she meets the legal gender recognition requirements of Canada, and the standards established by other international competitions.” The statement, however, did not elaborate on what the requirements were.


Ms. Talackova was one of 65 finalists selected to compete for the title of Miss Universe Canada, with the ultimate goal of representing her country in the international Miss Universe pageant. [MORE]

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Skills for Today and Tomorrow

Skills for Today and Tomorrow | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it
Digital literacies are not the same as knowing how to use Word or Excel. Nor are they the same as computer science.

Via Ana Cristina Pratas
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Poll: Majority Favor Protecting Gays, Lesbians From Workplace Discrimination

Poll: Majority Favor Protecting Gays, Lesbians From Workplace Discrimination | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

via buzzfeed.com


Most Americans say they favor an executive order banning workplace discrimination against gays and lesbians, according to a poll sponsored by a gay rights group. Conservatives and liberals alike back the workplace measure, as the terrain shifts.

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Lawyers arguing DOMA appeal Wednesday

Lawyers arguing DOMA appeal Wednesday | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by CHUCK COLBERT, Keen News


When a panel of three judges on a federal appeals court hears arguments against the federal Defense of Marriage Act, three openly gay lawyers will argue the law is unconstitutional. Opposing them, one straight attorney.


Legal gay icon Mary Bonauto will once again make a case for equal marriage, arguing on behalf of seven gay couples and three widowers, all married in Massachusetts after the 2003 Goodridge v. Department of Public Health decision.


While the state affords them all the rights, benefits, protections, and responsibilities of legal wedlock, the federal government, under DOMA, denies them more than 1,000 federal programs, benefits and legal protections afforded to opposite-sex couples.

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Memos: Gay-marriage foes played race card in Maine

The leading national organization opposing same-sex marriage has sought to split the Democratic Party base by pitting African-Americans and Hispanics against gay-rights groups, according to confidential strategy memos made public by court officials...
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Severed leg that washed ashore in Florida belonged to missing woman, 38, who vanished with 61-year-old girlfriend

Severed leg that washed ashore in Florida belonged to missing woman, 38, who vanished with 61-year-old girlfriend | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by Daily Mail Reporter


A severed leg that mysteriously washed ashore in Florida last December belonged to a missing Bradenton woman, whose girlfriend has also vanished.


Detectives said 38-year-old Kelly Moriarty, who has been missing since December 17 last year, has died, and they are now investigating where the rest of her remains are.


Moriarty’s case is entwined with that of her girlfriend, 61-year-old Doris Wade Carter of Plant City, who is also missing.


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Cleveland: Marriage equality rally draws in thousands

Cleveland: Marriage equality rally draws in thousands | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by PAMELA OSBORNE, WKYC Ch. 3


Thousands ofGgreater Clevelanders came together this afternoon to protest the state of Ohio's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.

Rally-goers said it's about time things become equal when it comes to the opportunity for marriage.


There were more than 200 same sex couples at that rally today, who were ready to enter into the next level of commitment. But the law, as it is, prevents them from doing that. Those who attended the rally say it's a matter of civil rights.


Activists took their message to the streets of downtown Cleveland, for a peaceful protest. They used the steps of City Hall to educate passersby's and advocate for marriage equality. Same-sex couples weren't the only participants in Saturday's rally. [MORE including video]

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NOM Launches Boycott Of Starbucks Over Marriage Equality

NOM Launches Boycott Of Starbucks Over Marriage Equality | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

A convenient excuse to cover up its crushing loss in New Hampshire yesterday, the National Organization for Marriage has launched a “Dump Starbucks” campaign in protest of the company’s support for marriage equality. The boycott’s website launched shortly after Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz rebuffed NOM’s complaintsat a shareholders’ meeting yesterday:


SCHULTZ: I think Starbucks has many constituents, and from time to time we are going to make a decision that we think is consistent with the heritage and the tradition of the company that is perhaps maybe inconsistent with one group’s view of the world… We made that decision through the lens of humanity and being the kind of company that embraces diversity. [MORE]

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Obama Opposes NC Amendment Banning Gay Marriage

Obama Opposes NC Amendment Banning Gay Marriage | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by PAUL STANLEY, Christian Post


President Obama appears to be moving away from his 2009 stance of opposing gay marriage. He is opposing a proposed constitutional amendment in North Carolina that would define marriage as between one man and one woman.


"While the president does not weigh in on every single ballot measure in every state, the record is clear that the President has long opposed divisive and discriminatory efforts to deny rights and benefits to same-sex couples," said Obama's North Carolina spokesperson, Cameron French, last Friday. [MORE]

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Santorum, Romney Supporters Divided on Religion's Role in Decisions

by PAUL STANLEY, Christian Post


It may not surprise many political pundits that the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll finds a majority of Rick Santorum supporters think elected officials should rely on their personal religious beliefs in making policy decisions. Supporters of Mitt Romney differ not only on the use of religious beliefs, but also on the legalization of abortion and gay marriage.


The poll, taken last week as part of a comprehensive survey of a variety of political views, found that 53 percent of Santorum supporters think political leaders should rely on religious beliefs when making policy decisions. Only 28 percent of Romney supporters feel the same way.


Santorum supporters, who are known to be more evangelical in their religious beliefs, feel strongly that candidates they support should share the same values, with 65 percent agreeing. Only 41 percent of Romney supporters prefer their candidates to share their religious beliefs. [MORE]

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U.S. Issues First Anti-Gay Hate Crime Indictment

U.S. Issues First Anti-Gay Hate Crime Indictment | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

HUFF POST GAY VOICES


A U.S. federal grand jury has issued the first-ever indictment to charge a violation of the sexual orientation section of the federal hate crimes law.
An email statement from the U.S. [MORE]

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No Special Rights PAC, Maine Anti-Gay Marriage Group, Seeks End To 'Sodomy-Based Marriage'

No Special Rights PAC, Maine Anti-Gay Marriage Group, Seeks End To 'Sodomy-Based Marriage' | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

Huff Post Politics


No Special Rights PAC, a new anti-gay group, has laid down roots in Maine, where its two founders are hoping to combat a pro-equality push that has led to a same-sex marriage ballot initiative being put to a vote in November.


Paul Madore and Mike Heath, longtime opponents of gay rights and pro-gay initiatives who founded the group, made a public push this month at the University of Maine during Pride Week, where they distributed a "truth pledge" that, among other goals, seeks to rebrand gay marriage as "Sodomy-Based Marriage."


 [MORE]

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Same-Sex Couples Seek Naturalization Rights

by ROSE BOUBOUSHIAN, Court House News Service


Five gay and lesbian bi-national married couples claim in Federal Court that the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutionally denies foreign spouses the right to become U.S. citizens, because of their sexual orientation.

"Plaintiffs are five committed, loving couples, lawfully married by the government of South Africa and the States of Vermont, Connecticut, and New York," the complaint states. "In each couple, one spouse is an American citizen and the other spouse a foreign national. If they were different-sex couples, the federal government would recognize the foreign spouse as an 'immediate relative' of a United States citizen, thereby allowing the American spouse to petition for an immigrant visa for the foreign spouse and place the foreign spouse on the path to lawful permanent resident and citizenship. Solely because of DOMA and its unlawful discrimination against same-sex couple, however, these plaintiffs are being denied the immigration rights afforded to other similarly situated bi-national couple. This is an action to remedy that hateful, harmful, and unlawful discrimination." [MORE]

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Just The Facts On North Carolina's Marriage Amendment

Just The Facts On North Carolina's Marriage Amendment | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by PETROW, Past President,

National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association,

and CHUCK SMALL,

huffintonpost.com


Washington, Maryland, New Jersey, New Hampshire. So far this year, the bumpy road to marriage equality has played out in four states, with wins in three, and an unsurprising veto in the Garden State by Republican Governor Chris Christie.


Next up, North Carolina's voters head to the polls on May 8 to vote on Amendment One, a constitutional instrument that would bring the Tar Heel State in line with all its Southern neighbors in codifying discrimination against not only its LGBT citizens but all its residents. As in other states where this battle has raged of late, the vitriol has been high, opinions are voiced as fact, and efforts to obfuscate the impact of the Amendment widespread. This perfect storm was in evidence recently when The News & Observer of Raleigh published an op-ed titled "The Case for the Marriage Amendment" by John Long, a software engineer.


The public outcry to Long's op-ed was overwhelming, leading the paper to publish letters on its blog that same day. Repeatedly, the letters highlighted the "misinformation," "falsehoods," and "assortment of illogical and factually mistaken elements." This troubled us, too -- the blurring of the line between fact and opinion, but also between fact and fiction, which is why we think it's important to clarify what Amendment One is, and what it is not. [MORE]

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Army Mom's Dispatch from the Frontlines

Army Mom's Dispatch from the Frontlines | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by Lt. Dan Choi


This amazing and harrowing letter came to me from Cindy. Her gay son just graduated Basic Training. The entire family is an inspiration, standing on the front lines of our equality fight. I changed the brave soldier's name to "Jon" because there are penalties for being too famous in the army!


Dear Dan,


This year my second son, Jon, shipped in January to BCT (Basic Combat Training) at Fort Benning. This is a brief account of some things which happened to him, and I thought you might be interested. So, here's a story from the new improved Army, post-DADT.


As soon as Jon's basic training started, one of the 3 drill sergeants gave him the creeps- he'd stare at the boys with a really hard glare. During week 2, he called Jon up to the front of the platoon and screamed "SMITH, are you a f*ggot?" and Jon couldn't think on his feet fast enough to decide what to say- so he just stared. The DS (Drill Sergeant) screamed,"I KNEW it! I told you so!", looking at the other boys. Then he yelled for Jon to identify "all the other little fruits who are here!" which Jon refused to do.

More: http://ow.ly/a79oB

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CNN: Gay pride groups appear at U.S. military academies

CNN: Gay pride groups appear at U.S. military academies | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it
In the six months since the repeal of the U.S. military's don't ask, don't tell policy, many of the most prestigious military institutions in the country are adding a student group to their club rosters that they had never seen before: ...
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A father responds to his gay 7-year-old

A father responds to his gay 7-year-old | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by MARY ELIZABETH WILLIAMS, Salon.com


The tale began a few months ago, when blogger Amelia penned a column about her then 6-year-old son’s crush on Blaine from “Glee.” She noted how her husband had observed at the time, “So if at 16 he wants to make a big announcement at the dinner table, we can say ‘You told us when you were six.’”


They didn’t have to wait nearly that long. Just last month, Amelia, who has been steadily chronicling her family’s experiences in this new terrain, wrote a piece entitled “When Your 7-Year-Old Son Announces, ‘I’m Gay.’” In it, she reveals how her Blaine-crushing offspring, a child who just a few months earlier had no concept of the word “gay,” had casually come out to her one day, right before bounding off to play with his brothers. “Gay,” he’d said. “I’m gay.”


And what did mom do? She “leaned down to eye level with him and rubbed my nose against his,” and told him, “I love you so much.” [MORE]

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Forty Years Gone: MLK's Dream Today Would Be Colored 'Green'

Forty Years Gone: MLK's Dream Today Would Be Colored 'Green' | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by VAN JONES, via huffingtonpost.com


[This is the topic of COFFEE PARTY RADIO today at 11:30 Pacific, 2:20 Eastern, or podcast thereafter.]


Four decades have passed since that fateful day. As of this month, Dr. King has been gone from us longer than he was ever here. As we pass this milestone in history, we gather in Memphis to remind ourselves and the world that a bullet killed the dreamer -- but not the dream.


Dr. King had a vision of an America as good as its promise, and a world at peace with itself. That vision lives on in the hearts of hundreds of millions -- including two generations of adults and a rising generation of teenagers, all of whom have been born since Dr. King's passing.


The time has come for us to step forward. We must take full responsibility to advance the cause of justice, opportunity and peace in a new century.



[MORE]

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Obama administration allows health coverage for same-sex spouse

Obama administration allows health coverage for same-sex spouse | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by Joe Davidson, WASHINGTON POST 


The Obama administration has directed a health insurance company to cover the same-sex spouse of a federal employee. Gay rights advocates say they believe this is the first time such coverage has been allowed.


A March 9 letter to Blue Cross Blue Shield, from Shirley Patterson, assistant director of federal employee insurance operations for the Office of Personnel Management, said that “OPM hereby withdraws any outstanding directive regarding the enrollment of Ms. Golinski’s wife, Amy C. Cunninghis, in her family health benefits plan.”


OPM previously said the wife of Karen Golinski, a federal court employee in California, could not be covered. [MORE]

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Elizabeth Warren’s Gamble: Does Advocacy for Equality Mix with Swing Voters Appeal?

Elizabeth Warren’s Gamble: Does Advocacy for Equality Mix with Swing Voters Appeal? | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

Can forceful advocacy for same-sex marriage and appeal to blue collar swing voters go hand-in-hand?


By STEVE KORNACKI, Salon


Generally, it’s not news when a Democratic candidate for office in Massachusetts speaks out in favor of same-sex marriage, something that’s been legal in the state for nearly a decade now. But if the candidate happens to be running in the most closely watched Senate race in the country and publicly takes her party’s president to task for not sharing her position on the issue, it becomes a national story.


“I want to see the president evolve,” Elizabeth Warren said in an interview with the Washington Blade that went viral on Thursday, “because I believe that is right; marriage equality is morally right.”


The obvious significance of Warren’s comments is that they amplify the pressure on Barack Obama from liberals who believe he is personally fine with gay marriage and that only election year trepidation – what if it costs me two points in Ohio? – is holding him back from saying so. It’s still very likely that Obama will stick with his cautious posture at least through November, but marriage supporters in his party could make things awkward and uncomfortable for him this summer by forcing the issue as the Democratic platform is assembled. [MORE]

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N.H. votes to keep same-sex marriage

N.H. votes to keep same-sex marriage | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it
The decision was reached after two hours of debate and 10 votes in the statehouse.
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Michelle Obama Talks the Presidency, Marriage Equality and the Supreme Court

Michelle Obama Talks the Presidency, Marriage Equality and the Supreme Court | Coffee Party Equality | Scoop.it

by NEAL BROVERMAN, The Advocate


Michelle Obama is reminding voters that their choice for president will affect the fate of marriage equality, since the president makes appointments to the Supreme Court.


The first lady campaigned for her husband Monday in New York City. At a TriBeCa fund-raiser hosted by Robert DeNiro and his wife, Mrs. Obama stressed the importance of the next four years for the Supreme Court. "Let us not forget what [the Supreme Court's] decisions — the impact those decisions will have on our lives for decades to come — on our privacy and security, on whether we can speak freely, worship openly, and, yes, love whomever we choose." [MORE]

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