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National News

Obama Renews Vow To Repeal Military Ban on Gays
During his State of the Union Address on January 27, President Barack Obama vowed to work with Congress this year to repeal the nation’s ban on openly gay service members. The pledge is a reiteration of his campaign promise to overturn the ban. Obama said, “This year, I will work with Congress and our military to finally repeal the law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are.” He last mentioned his promise during a speech at the Human Rights Campaign National Dinner on October 10. Recent polls suggest that most Americans support repealing the ban.

Report Claims Increase of Gays in Military
A new report estimates that 66,000 gay, lesbian, and bisexual people currently are serving in the US military. It was compiled and published by the Williams Institute, a public policy institute at the UCLA School of Law that studies sexual orientation law. The figure represents a slight increase in the numbers previously reported. The authors used a variety of statistical methods to arrive at the estimate, relying on data from the 2000 Census and the Census Bureau’s 2008 American Community Survey.

World News

British Attitudes More Liberal on Homosexuality
The latest British Social Attitudes survey, conducted in 2008, shows that public attitudes toward gays and lesbians have become more liberal since the survey first was conducted in 1983. According to the 2008 survey, 36 percent thought same-sex relationships were “always” or “mostly wrong,” compared with 62 percent in 1983. The survey measures a variety of attitudes toward social issues, including sexuality, drug use, and political affiliation.
Moscow Mayor Calls Gay Pride March “Satanic”
Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov again called the city’s planned Gay Pride Parade “satanic.” He first referred to the Pride Parade as satanic in 2007. Luzhkov said recently, “A gay parade cannot be called anything but a satanic act.” Organizer Nikolai Alexeyev confirmed plans to hold a parade on May 29. He insisted that a ban would not prevent it from being held. Last year’s parade ended in the public arrests of Alexeyev and others in front of international journalists.

Overturn of Mexico City Gay Marriage Law sought
According to The Washington Post, Mexican federal prosecutors are seeking to overturn Mexico City’s recently passed same-sex marriage legislation. The Attorney General’s Office said in a statement that the law “violates the principle of legality, because it strays from the constitutional principle of protecting the family.” It has filed an appeal to Mexico’s Supreme Court, asking it to void the legislation.

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