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January 29, 2013
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A free twice-weekly news summary for the LGBT community

  Top Story 
  • Boy Scouts may drop national ban on gay members, leaders
    Boy Scouts of America officials are considering allowing local councils to set their own policies regarding the participation of openly gay individuals, a move that comes after a number of sponsors pulled their financial support from the organization. "The Boy Scouts would not, under any circumstances, dictate a position to units, members or parents. Under this proposed policy, the BSA would not require any chartered organization to act in ways inconsistent with that organization’s mission, principles or religious beliefs,” said Deron Smith, a BSA spokesman. NBC News (1/28)
  • Anti-gay leaders alarmed by Boy Scouts move: Leading anti-gay groups and conservative religious leaders condemned the possibility that the Boy Scouts of America will end its national ban on openly gay scouts and troop leaders. "Jerry Sandusky is now the poster boy for the Boy Scouts of America," tweeted Bryan Fischer, an official with the American Family Association. Meanwhile Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council urged the group's members to contact the BSA to oppose the change. Right Wing Watch (1/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Politics and Policy 
  • Senate immigration plan mum on same-sex couples; Obama won't be
    President Barack Obama today is scheduled to unveil his plan for immigration reform, and sources say it will include a remedy for foreign same-sex partners of U.S. citizens who are in danger of being deported. A bipartisan Senate framework on immigration reform revealed this week does not address the issue. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., called the issue a "red flag," and said it shouldn't be addressed right now. BuzzFeed (1/28), Towleroad (1/29)
 
  • As their numbers grow, out members hope to change U.S. Congress
    With a record seven openly gay, lesbian and bisexual members of Congress, it’s reasonable to assume at least one will be present during most discussions in Congress, which will help personalize the debate over LGBT issues, said Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo. Some new out members have experienced awkward but enlightening moments when others assumed their spouses were of opposite sex. Openly LGBT members still account for only slightly more than 1% of the Congress, some advocates point out. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (1/25) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • R.I. Senate leader commits to debate on marriage bill
    Rhode Island Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed said last week she does not support the marriage equality bill that passed in the state House, but promised a fair debate on the Senate version of the bill. Some senators could support the measure if language concerning religious exemptions were strengthened, Paiva Weed said, noting that she has "no idea" if the bill will pass. Roman Catholic Church leaders are lobbying against upgrading the state’s civil unions law to allow same-sex couples to marry, Paiva Weed said. WJAR-TV (Cranston, R.I.) (1/25) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
 
  • GOP lost culture wars, says former Romney adviser
    Dave Kochel, an Iowa political strategist who was a senior adviser to Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, said this weekend the Republican party has largely lost the culture wars over issues such as marriage equality and abortion. Kochel is involved with the group Iowa Republicans for Freedom, which will host former Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman at an event this week. Mehlman, who came out as gay after leaving the party post, is seeking to steer the GOP away from its anti-gay positions. WHO-TV (Des Moines, Iowa) (1/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
 
  • Thousands march in Paris to support marriage equality
    At least 125,000 marchers turned out in Paris this weekend to support the government’s plan to legalize marriage for same-sex couples. "There is a big difference between today's march and the one two weeks ago, which is that this demonstration is one of brotherhood, not of hatred," said openly gay Paris mayor Bertrand Delanoe, referencing an even larger march by those who oppose marriage equality. NBC News/Reuters (1/28)
  • Breakthrough in Wyo. on same-sex partner rights
    A bill that would replace the word "spouse" in Wyoming state law with the term "domestic partner" has passed out of a key state House committee, a development some say signals an embrace of gay rights by the state's libertarian legislative culture. Democratic Rep. Cathy Connolly, the first openly gay state legislator in Wyoming, proposed the measure. "We passed the first step, but it's a big step," Connolly said. The committee rejected a bill that would have allowed same-sex couples to marry. Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model) (1/28), The Huffington Post (1/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Lawyers argue marriage too important to allow same-sex weddings
    Lawyers arguing on behalf of those who oppose marriage rights for same-sex couples told the Supreme Court in a brief last week that opposite-sex couples need marriage to limit out-of-wedlock, unplanned pregnancies -- a problem same-sex couples do not encounter. It is therefore reasonable to limit marriage rights to heterosexuals, the lawyers contended. Briefs from those who support marriage equality are expected to be filed next month. Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model) (1/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Opinion 
  • Given the organization’s place in U.S. culture, how significant will it be if the Boy Scouts of America drops its nationwide ban on openly gay members and leaders?
It will be an important cultural advance.
It will be an unsurprising but welcome change.
It will mean very little overall.
I'm not sure.

  Leadership Spotlight 
  • Will this "bossy" lesbian become New York City’s next mayor?
    New York City Speaker Christine Quinn isn’t interested in polemics so much as results, according to this profile of the candidate for mayor. Quinn’s friends, family and colleagues say that she began as a "bossy" neighborhood organizer, and that she's a smart political leader whose emotions are never far below the surface. "Her legacy as speaker is as an elected official who lives the job 24/7 and is as invested as much as you can be emotionally, mentally, intellectually," said Jimmy Oddo, a Republican councilman from Staten Island. New York magazine (1/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
Position TitleCompany NameLocation
Coordinator, Strategic Planning and ImplementationUnited Nations FoundationWashington, DC
Program Associate, Energy and ClimateUnited Nations FoundationWashington, DC
Vice President, Social Justice ProgramsArcus FoundationNYC, NY
Director of Strategic Partner Programs Lambda LegalNew York City, NY
Executive DirectorFairness West Virginia & Fairness West Virginia InstituteCharleston, WV
Office ManagerFreedom to MarryNew York, NY
Executive DirectorLGBT Center of the DesertPalm Springs, CA
Executive DirectorRuth Ellis CenterHighland Park, MI
Communications DirectorGarden State EqualityMontclair, NJ
Foundation Relations CoordinatorLA Gay & Lesbian CenterLos Angeles, CA
Donor Services and Finance SpecialistLA Gay & Lesbian CenterLos Angeles, CA
Foundation Giving ManagerNational Gay and Lesbian Task ForceNew York, NY
Director of CommunicationsNational Gay and Lesbian Task ForceWashington, DC
Click here to view more job listings.

  SmartQuote 
It is important to me that young people and people who are frightened see the possibilities. And if I can help people to be less frightened, then that's a wonderful, wonderful thing."
--Kathleen Wynne, an out lesbian who won an election this weekend to lead the Liberal party in Ottawa and become the first openly LGBT Canadian premiere, as quoted by The Canadian Press

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