North America




Number of U.S. Hate Groups Is Rising, Report Says

Atlanta — Fed by antagonism toward President Obama, resentment toward changing racial demographics and the economic rift between rich and poor, the number of so-called hate groups and antigovernment organizations in the nation has continued to grow, according to a report released Wednesday by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The center, which has kept track… Read more »

Expanding Black Masculinity to End ‘Black on Black’ Anti-LGBT Violence

If we’ve learned nothing else over the past month, we’ve learned that we as black Americans need to have an open and honest dialogue around the meaning of “manhood.” At the beginning of February, Deoni Jones, a 23-year-old African-American transgender woman, was stabbed to death at a Washington, D.C. bus stop — the suspect, a… Read more »

Maryland governor signs equal marriage into law

Maryland has become the eighth state in the union to agree to allow gay couples to marry. Democratic Governor Martin O’Malley signed the equal marriage bill into law last night saying “We are one Maryland”. It will take effect in 2013. Washington state’s equal marriage laws passed earlier this year are scheduled to come into… Read more »

Q&A: ‘Gay in America’ photographer Scott Pasfield

(CNN) – New York photographer Scott Pasfield released his first digital photography project in the book, “Gay in America,” last fall. With a mission to educate and destroy stereotypes about being gay, Pasfield spent three years traveling 52,000 miles across the nation to document the stories of 140 gay men. Video “I hope that people… Read more »

Bully Documentary Given R Rating, Can’t Be Shown in Schools

The Weinstein Company has lost an appeal to have the rating of its documentary Bully, a harrowing examination of the bullying epidemic in America, changed to PG-13 from R, which will prevent it from reaching its targeted adolescent audience. The documentary, which will be released March 9 and follows five bullied kids during the school… Read more »

Bush Appointee Finds DOMA Unconstitutional

Moments ago, Judge Jeffery White of the District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) violates the Constitution’s equal protection clause in a case brought by Karen Golinski. Golinski, represented by Lambda Legal, “was denied spousal health benefits by her employer, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of… Read more »

Gov. Christie follows through on promise to veto gay marriage bill

Trenton, N.J.(AP) –  Gov. Chris Christie has followed through on his promise to reject a bill allowing same-sex marriage in New Jersey by quickly vetoing the measure Friday and renewing his call for a ballot question to decide the issue. The veto came a day after the state Assembly passed the bill. The state Senate… Read more »

Toronto Welcomes Forteen Iranian Gay Refugees from Turkey

Dear friends, IRQR would like to thank all of you for your dedication and support to our cause. Without your help it would not be possible to accomplish the work we do. We are pleased to announce that fourteen of our members who have fled Iran to Turkey have been granted refugee status by the… Read more »

The Plight of LGBT Immigrant Detainees

Feet in 2 Worlds is hosting a forum called ‘The Detention Dilemma: Families, Security and Immigrant Rights’ at The New School on February 23 at 6 PM. The event will take place at the Theresa Lang Community and Student Center at 55 West 13th Street, 2nd Fl. Email to RSVP. After civil rights complaints… Read more »

Maryland gay marriage bill on way to governor

Annapolis, Maryland (AP) – Gay marriage is all but legalized in the state of Maryland after the legislature gave its final OK Thursday to the law that’s being sent to the governor, who said he expects to sign it sometime this week. The state Senate voted 25-22 for the law. The vote comes less than… Read more »

Washington Governor Signs Gay Marriage Bill

Olympia, Wash. (AP) — Gov. Chris Gregoire handed gay rights advocates a major victory Monday, signing into law a measure that legalizes same-sex marriage in Washington state, making it the seventh in the nation to allow gay and lesbian couples to wed. Gregoire signed the bill surrounded by gay rights supporters. “I’m proud our same-sex… Read more »

Vote Moves Washington State Closer to Gay Marriage

Seattle — Washington was poised Wednesday to become the seventh state to allow same-sex couples to marry after the State House gave final passage to such a bill. Gov. Christine Gregoire promised to sign it. The governor is expected to do just that as soon as next week, but it is not likely to take… Read more »

Court Strikes Down Ban on Gay Marriage in California

Los Angeles — A federal appeals court panel on Tuesday threw out a voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage passed in 2008, upholding a lower court’s ruling that the ban, known as Proposition 8, violated the constitutional rights of gay men and lesbians in California. The three-judge panel issued its ruling in San Francisco, upholding a… Read more »

From Partner Benefits to Affirmative Action, Proposed Contractor Executive Order Specifics Discussed

With the senior policy advisor for Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) telling Metro Weekly on Feb. 4 that timing is key for President Obama to take action to prohibit federal contractors from discriminating against employees on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, questions about the specifics of the proposed executive order — on which… Read more »

Cynthia Nixon: My bisexuality was not a choice, my gay relationship is

In a statement given to the American gay magazine The Advocate, Cynthia Nixon has addressed the confusion which followed her comments on sexuality. The actress’s observations in a New York Times interview this month sparked controversy, when she seemed to say she chose to be gay. Now the 45-year-old has said it was within the… Read more »

Interview: Greg Louganis on gold medals, HIV and Matthew Mitcham

He won his first Olympic medal at the age of 16. Eight years later he became the first man in 56 years to win two diving golds at the same Olympics. Four years after that, in Seoul, he added two more gold medals to his haul, despite famously hitting his head on the springboard during… Read more »

US Government Team To Discuss Human Rights With Uganda’s Museveni

The US deputy Secretary of State Ambassador William Burns, is leading a high profile delegation to Uganda Friday to discuss human rights with Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni. The delegation is also understood to deliberate on a range of bilateral issues, including regional security and good governance with the Ugandan government. Ambassador Burns is the top… Read more »

Barack Obama Includes Gay Troops In SOTU

President Barack Obama included the contributions of gay troops in his State of the Union address delivered Tuesday evening. An overarching theme in Obama’s speech, titled An America Built to Last, was lessons that could be gleaned from the military’s spirit of inclusion and teamwork. “Last month, I went to Andrews Air Force Base and… Read more »

Gay bishop documentary takes center stage at Sundance

It’s been years since the incident, but Bishop Gene Robinson’s heart still races when he sees it on film. Robinson, the Episcopal Church’s first openly bishop, was preaching in London when a man in the audience stood and began yelling at him. The heckler waved a motorcycle helmet in his hand as he ranted. Robinson… Read more »

Groundbreaking Global Report on LGBT Tourism Released Created Through UNWTO-IGLTA partnership

The United Nations World Tourism Organization unveiled its first report on LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) tourism today during FITUR, Spain’s leading international tourism trade fair. Created in partnership with the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association, the inaugural 40-page “Global Report on LGBT Tourism” includes case studies and commentaries documenting the economic and… Read more »

All 100 Firms On Fortune’s Best Companies List Protect Gay Workers

All 100 Firms On Fortune’s Best Companies List Protect Gay Workers Gay workers are for the first time protected at all 100 firms on Fortune’s Best Companies To Work For list, reported. In 2008, 95 of the companies on the financial glossy’s top 100 list included non-discrimination policies that include sexual orientation. That number… Read more »

Telenovelas, Erections, and Raising Sexually Healthy Teens

When Enrique first joined our family, we agreed to one hour of television per night. He was 13 and had been used to non-stop TV, so this was a big change. He didn’t resist, but I realize now that to him, one hour was a shocking restriction. Spanish was still his dominant language, and he… Read more »

No Asians!

Navigating the pitfalls of anti-Asian sentiments in online hookup sites. I more or less forgot about the Internet tricking grind. I’m happily settled with a man, and we don’t have one of those one-eye-over-the-shoulder relationships where we each wait for the other to leave the apartment and then hit the web for the day’s hookups.… Read more »

Two lesbian contestants make history at Miss California USA

Two women competing in Miss California USA this weekend are the first openly gay contestants in the pageant’s 60-year history. Not one but two lesbians are competing to win the Miss California USA beauty pageant. According to local media reports which describe their participation as history in the making, beauty queens Mollie Thomas, 19, and… Read more »

Critics assail crime laws aimed at people with HIV

New York(AP) — A man in Texas is serving a 35-year prison sentence for spitting at a police officer — because he has the virus that causes AIDS and his saliva was deemed a deadly weapon. In Michigan, an HIV-positive man who allegedly bit a neighbor during an argument faced a bioterrorism charge. Charges for… Read more »

Gay South Korean finds peaceful refuge in Canada

Kim Kyung-hwan arrived in Canada in June 2006 with no clear plans in mind. “I really just needed some time to think and decide what to do. I knew that if I went home I would have to go to jail,” Kyung-hwan, 30, told the Star. Kyung-hwan objected to the 21 months of compulsory military… Read more »

Delaware, Hawaii To Ring In New Year With Civil Unions For Gay Couples

Delaware and Hawaii will become the two latest states to recognize the relationships of gay and lesbian couples with civil unions on New Year’s Day. The civil unions laws take effect at the stroke of midnight Saturday in Hawaii and at 10AM on New Year’s Day in Delaware. The fight for gay couples to tie… Read more »

Bishops Say Rules on Gay Parents Limit Freedom of Religion

Roman Catholic bishops in Illinois have shuttered most of the Catholic Charities affiliates in the state rather than comply with a new requirement that says they must consider same-sex couples as potential foster-care and adoptive parents if they want to receive state money. The charities have served for more than 40 years as a major… Read more »

Editorial…Sailor’s gay kiss is a milepost on a long road of change

Petty Officer 2nd Class Marissa Gaeta’s homecoming kiss to her girlfriend shows progress in the military. But more is needed. When the USS Oak Hill pulled into its Virginia port this week after a three-month deployment, the sailor who stepped off and bestowed the customary first homecoming kiss on a waiting loved one made history.… Read more »

HIV Is Not a Crime… Or Is It?

View Video here Do you think people living with HIV should have to register as sex offenders? Do you believe people living with HIV should be sentenced to 25 years in prison for a sexual act that did not result in transmission of the HIV virus? Would the fact that an individual did not disclose… Read more »

Christopher Hitchens dies after cancer battle, aged 62

Atheist author and journalist Christopher Hitchens died last night, aged 62, at a hospital in Texas after suffering from pneumonia brought on by oesophageal cancer. In 2009, Hitchens, a vocal supporter of gay rights, revealed in his memoirs he had gay liaisons at Oxford with men who later became Tory politicians. Hitchens, who studied at… Read more »

UN publishes first global report and recommendations to tackle gay rights abuses

The UN’s Human Rights Council has published for the first time a report detailing rights abuses against LGBT people around the world, through violence and discriminatory laws, and a set of recommendations all countries should adopt to protect their citizens. The document says global governments “have often overlooked violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation… Read more »

Gay S. Korean conscript wins refugee status in Canada

Seoul (Yonhap) – Canada awarded a South Korean man refugee status after he objected to the mandatory military service in his home country for being a pacifist and a homosexual, a local human rights group said Thursday. The Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB) granted the status in July 2009 to Kim Kyung-hwan, 31,… Read more »

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Gay Travel

The results of an annual Gay and Lesbian Travel Survey have just been released, courtesy of the San Francisco-based Community Marketing, Inc. And while some of the results will be less-than-shocking (gay New York City gets high scores, as does gay Miami and gay New Orleans), there are still a few surprises in the 40-page… Read more »

Senate GOP filibusters nominee over pro-gay editorial

Senate Republicans successfully filibustered on Monday the confirmation of an ambassadorial nominee, citing a pro-LGBT editorial she wrote as one reason to vote against her. The cloture vote to advance the nomination of Mari Carmen Aponte for the position of U.S. ambassador to El Salvador failed by 49-37 on a mostly party-line basis. Aponte has… Read more »

Gay rights activists at UN call for end to bullying, violence

UN — Activists called on governments around the world to end homophobic bullying and violence, saying Thursday that gay rights are human rights that must be respected by all. Judy Shepard, the mother of a young man murdered in an anti-gay crime in the U.S. in 1998, told the United Nations gathering that people with… Read more »

Hillary Clinton: Being gay is not ‘a western invention, but a human reality’

Hillary Clinton has delivered a groundbreaking speech to a United Nations summit in Geneva following the US’ declaration that its agencies will challenge the criminalisation of gay acts and LGBT identity overseas. The Secretary of State said gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people were “human beings born free and bestowed equality and dignity, who have… Read more »

Obama: Foreign Aid Could Be Tied To Gay Rights

President Barack Obama on Tuesday announced his administration would consider gay rights in making decisions about foreign aid. The president issued a memorandum directing all agencies engaged abroad to make certain U.S. aid programs “promote and protect” the rights of gay people. “The struggle to end discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons… Read more »

Rights or righteousness?

Editor’s note: To the casual observer, Evangelical Christians, the Vatican, African Anglicans and Muslims in half the planet are united in a hard line approach to “deviant” behavior (men who have sex with men MSM, intravenous drug use and commercial sex work) that may lead to higher risk for HIV infection. The institutional response has… Read more »

The Future of HIV Prevention Among MSM in Europe

Towards better sex with less harm for gay and bisexual men in Europe Good Morning The title of our conference asks us to consider the future, and I hope over the next two days we will all be looking forward. The future is inevitable. But what it looks like is not. The evidence base for… Read more »