Gov. Gretchen Whitmer addressed the State of Michigan after a plan to kidnap her and other Michigan government officials was thwarted by state and federal law enforcement agencies. She started by saying thank you to law enforcement and FBI agents who participated in stopping this [...]
Compiled by Dawn Wolfe
GOP platform takes firm stand against gay unions
NEW YORK – Republicans endorsed an uncompromising position against gay unions Aug. 25 in a manifesto that contrasts with Vice President Dick Cheney’s supportive comments about gay rights and the moderate face the party showed at this week’s national convention.
A panel made up largely of conservative delegates approved platform language that calls for a constitutional amendment banning equal marriage rights and that opposes legal recognition of any sort for civil unions for gay and lesbian couples.
Christopher Barron of the Log Cabin Republicans was livid after the panel endorsed the first-ever call for a constitutional equal-marriage ban in a GOP platform and went beyond that to oppose legal recognition of any same-sex unions.
“You can’t craft a vicious, mean-spirited platform and then try to put lipstick on the pig by putting Rudy Giuliani and Arnold Schwarzenegger on in prime time,” he said.
Virginia judge to rule on Vermont child-custody case
RICHMOND, Va. – On Aug. 24 a state judge claimed jurisdiction to decide a child custody case between two women who had entered into a civil union in Vermont, a move that could set a legal precedent for same-sex couples whose relationships are recognized in some states and not others.
Lisa Miller-Jenkins, 35, who dissolved her civil union with Janet Miller-Jenkins in Vermont last year, has sued in Virginia’s Frederick County Circuit Court to establish sole parental rights over the couple’s 2-year-old daughter, Isabella.
Janet Miller-Jenkins, 39, contested the action, saying a judge in Vermont already gave her temporary visitation rights with the child. Her attorney, Joseph Price, argued that because a custody proceeding is already under way in another state, both state and federal law prohibit the Virginia judge from ruling in the case.
Massachusetts court denies child support to former partner
BOSTON, Massachusetts – A woman who agreed to have a child with her lesbian partner, but split up with the mother before the baby’s birth, cannot be forced to pay child support, the state’s highest court ruled Aug. 25.
The couple broke up after one partner got pregnant by artificial insemination. After the baby was born, the woman sued her former partner for child support. A Probate and Family Court judge turned to the state Appeals Court, which in turned passed the case up to the Supreme Judicial Court.
An Associate Justice wrote that the informal agreement between the two women to have a child together did not constitute an enforceable contract, and the defendant can’t be forced to pay child support.
Three justices disagreed with the majority conclusion, saying that the implied contract between the women is enforceable.
Coalition creates transgender health priorities primer
Washington, D.C.– The National Coalition for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Health, in an effort to address health disparities among the transgender population, has compiled “An Overview of U.S. Trans Health Priorities.”
The overview is based upon an analysis of the available research on U.S. transgender populations.
Many of the issues outlined in the document are inter-related, and primarily related to access to health care – to trans health services, behavioral health services (including treatment for substance abuse and smoking cessation), HIV/AIDS/STD care and routine health and wellness care.
Some of the top priorities include violence prevention, depression, suicide prevention; lack of health insurance, Gender Identity Disorder as the principal diagnostic means determining access to Trans health services; lack of FDA approval for Transgender hormonal therapy; the continuing misclassification of sex reassignment surgery as “experimental” by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid; medical, mental health and substance abuse treatment provider insensitivity and hostility to Transgender people.
For more information visit www.lgbthealth.net.
In Other News
Dancehall star Beenie Man barred from MTV show after gay protest
MIAMI – Dancehall star Beenie Man, who has recorded anti-gay songs in the past, was yanked from a concert associated with the MTV Video Music Awards after gay groups planned a protest.
MTV pulled the Jamaican singer from the roster Aug. 24 after South Florida gay activists announced plans to protest the concert in Miami over some of his past lyrics, including “I’m dreaming of a new Jamaica, come to execute all the gays” and “Queers must be killed.”