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National News Briefs

By | 2004-08-19T09:00:00-04:00 August 19th, 2004|Uncategorized|

Compiled by Dawn Wolfe

Politics

Coors wins bruising GOP race for Senate
DENVER – The great-grandson of beer baron Adolph Coors handily won the Republican primary for Colorado’s U.S. Senate seat, triggering a face-off with the state’s Democratic attorney general this fall.
With 98 percent of precincts reporting early Aug. 5, Peter Coors, on leave as chairman of Coors Brewing Co., had 200,051 votes, or 61 percent.
Coors’ victory capped a bitter campaign in which conservatives loyal to his opponent funded ads ridiculing Coors’ support of a lower drinking age. They also tried to link him to homosexual causes, an apparent reference to the fact that Coors Brewing Co. extended benefits to same-sex partners of its workers and promoted its beer in gay bars while Coors was an executive at the company.
Coors said he supports a constitutional amendment to ban equal marriage rights, and he contends lowering the drinking age would teach responsibility at a younger age. He also has said many of his policies as chairman made good business sense.

Alan Keyes enters U.S. Senate race in Illinois
CHICAGO – Launching his first full day of campaigning for the U.S. Senate, Alan Keyes said he’s the true representative of the Land of Lincoln, even though he’s never lived in the state.
Keyes, the two-time presidential hopeful and East Coast conservative, is already focusing his campaign on the clear contrast between his own views and the liberal positions of his opponent, Democrat Barack Obama.
Keyes, a Maryland resident who made two failed Senate tries in that state, announced he had accepted the Illinois Republican Party’s request to be its candidate. He said he knew he faced up an uphill battle, but he had reviewed Obama’s record as a state senator and decided someone had to challenge him.
Keyes opposes abortion and gay rights, wants to replace the income tax with a national sales tax and calls affirmative action a “government patronage program.”
Keyes replaces the anti-gay rights candidate Jack Ryan, who withdrew from the race amid embarrassing sex club allegations in his divorce records. Keyes emerged as a candidate only recently, after a host of high-profile Illinois Republicans declined to run, including former Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka.
For more information: Keys: www.keyesforsenate.com; Obama: www2.obamaforillinois.com.

Law

ABA considers telling judges to get out of anti-gay groups
ATLANTA – Judges are on the front line of battles over legal rights for same-sex couples and should never belong to an organization that discriminates against gays, supporters of a proposed change to American Bar Association ethics rules argued Aug. 6.
The leader of the ABA panel said the committee wants to “make sure that judges aren’t viewed as bigots.”
Judges already are prohibited from joining clubs that discriminate based on race or sex. An ABA panel is debating whether to make groups that discriminate against gays off limits as well.
The Chicago-based ABA, the nation’s largest lawyers’ group with more than 400,000 members, writes conduct rules for judges and lawyers. State and federal courts generally adopt them, with some changes.
It is not known how many judges participate in groups such as the Boy Scouts that have policies against hiring gays or having homosexual leaders, or some veteran’s groups that restrict membership to heterosexuals. The ABA is not expected to vote on changes until next year.

Federal judge rules against gay activist’s Falwell Web site
RICHMOND, Va. – A judge has ruled that a gay activist must stop using a variation of the Rev. Jerry Falwell’s name in the address for a Web site critical of the conservative television evangelist.
In a ruling released Aug. 10, the federal judge said the domain name for the site, fallwell.com, was “nearly identical” to the registered trademark “Jerry Falwell” name and was likely to be confusing to Web surfers.
Hilton said the site’s operator, Christopher Lamparello, intended to divert people from the Jerry Falwell Ministries’ Web site “with the direct intent to tarnish or disparage” Falwell. He also ruled that Lamparello, of New York, sought to make a profit by selling a book on the site via a link to Amazon.com.
Lamparello’s site criticizes Falwell’s stance against homosexuality and includes a disclaimer that reads, “This Web site is not affiliated with Jerry Falwell Ministries.”

In Other News

“Lez” sparks Scrabble scramble
NEW ORLEANS – It wasn’t a four-letter word, but it was close enough to cause a stir at the National Scrabble Championship Aug. 5.
In the final round, eventual champion Trey Wright played the word “lez,” which was on a list of offensive words not allowed during the tournament.
Normally, no word is off-limits, but because the games were being taped for broadcast on ESPN, certain terms had been deemed inappropriate, including the three-letter slang for lesbian.
“There are words you just can’t show on television,” Scrabble Association Executive Director John Williams said.
Williams spoke with Wright and his opponent, David Gibson, then called an emergency meeting of the Scrabble Advisory Board. The board unanimously agreed to remove the word. Wright then returned the two tiles he had selected and played a different word, Williams said.
Wright, using more innocent words like feijoa (an evergreen shrub) and zebu (a domesticated ox), won the best-of-five final round in three games and pocketed a $25,000 prize.

Some notable gay and lesbian Olympians of the past

Some athletes of past Olympics who made it known, either during or after their sporting careers, that they were gay or lesbian:
Tom Waddell, a U.S. decathlete who competed in the 1968 Olympics. He founded the Gay Games in 1981 and died of AIDS in 1987.
John Curry, British figure skater who won the gold medal in 1976. He died from an AIDS-related illness in 1994.
Bruce Hayes, who won a gold medal in the 200-meter freestyle relay at the 1984 Olympics, later set world masters records at the Gay Games.
Holly Metcalf, gold-medal-winning U.S. rower in 1984.
Greg Louganis, widely considered the greatest diver of all time. Won four gold medals in diving at the 1984 and 1988 Olympics. Came out in 1994.
Mark Tewksbury, Olympic backstroke gold medalist for Canada in 1992.
Mia Hundvin of Norway and Camilla Andersen of Denmark, who not only played against each other in team handball at the Sydney Olympics in 2000, but also were legally married in Denmark.
Brian Orser, a two-time Olympic silver medalist in figure skating for Canada, who in 1998 lost a legal battle to prevent the public disclosure of a palimony suit filed by a former boyfriend.

About the Author:

BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.