Big Gay News
US Supreme Court Asked To Hear Domestic Partner Case
The US Supreme Court has been asked to rule on whether the people who signed a petition to put Washington state’s everything-but-marriage law to voters this fall should have their names made public, according to the Associated Press. Supporters of the measure want voters to decide if Washington’s law granting marriage benefits to domestic partners should remain in place. Gay-rights and open-government groups sought to make those names public. Ultimately, a federal appeals court decided that Washington’s Secretary of State can release the names and addresses of people who supported calling for a vote. Referendum supporters fear releasing the names will lead to “hostile confrontations from gay-rights supporters.” Justice Anthony Kennedy has ordered the state to file a written response.
Justice Department To Fight GLBT Discrimination
The Obama Administration has confirmed it will seek to fight discrimination against the GLBT community through the Justice Departments Civil Rights Division, according to the Associated Press. Tom Perez, Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Civil Rights Division, said pending legislation in Congress will allow the department to attack discrimination against the GLBT community. In a speech to division employees, Perez said, “We must fight for fairness and basic equality for our LGBT brothers and sisters who so frequently are being left in the shadows.”
Man Gets Six Months in Antigay Beating Death
In October, 19-year-old Robert Hannah was sentenced to six months after pleading guilty to one count of simple assault in the beating death of 37-year-old Randolph Hunter. According to police, Hunter grabbed Hannah near a Washington, DC, gay nightclub. In response, Hannah punched him. Hunter, who fell to the ground, and hit his head on the sidewalk, later died from his injuries. Hannah originally was charged with involuntary manslaughter, but prosecutors reduced the charge to simple assault after an investigation concluded contradictory eyewitness accounts would make a manslaughter conviction difficult to prove.
All-Male College Bans Crossdressing
Historically African-American, all-male Morehouse College in Atlanta has instituted a new dress-code policy, which includes a ban on wearing women’s clothes and makeup. According to the Dr. William Bynum, Vice President for Student Services, the ban was aimed at a small part of the student body. He said, “We are talking about five students who are living a gay lifestyle that is leading them to dress a way we do not expect in Morehouse men.” He met with the campus gay organization prior to the ban, and claimed the majority of members support it. The policy also bans wearing hats indoors, wearing pajamas in public, and walking barefoot on campus.
Straight Couple Shocked To Discover Cruise Was Gay
A married Italian couple is seeking a refund for their recent cruise, claiming they didn’t know it was tailored to a gay clientele. The couple asserts that the cruise company did not make it clear the cruise was for gays and lesbians. They say they were embarrassed by the entertainment on the cruise. Their lawyer told the Telegraph, “It’s not a question of discrimination, but of their enjoyment of the voyage.”
Uganda Member of Parliament Urges Death for Gay Sex
The BBC reports that Ugandan Member of Parliament David Bahati is proposing a bill to extend the death penalty to anyone having gay sex with disabled people or those under 18, or when the accused is HIV-positive. Gay sex already is illegal in Uganda, but the new bill proposes additional offenses and tougher penalties. According to the BBC, the bill has a good chance of passing, as senior leaders are likely to support it, and the President has a history of antigay views.