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February 20, 2015

Both countries have severe anti-gay laws

Several prominent LGBTI members of Congress have urged US President Barack Obama to drop Brunei and Malaysia from a major trade deal if they do not repeal their severe anti-gay laws.

In a letter dated 18 February, five of the six co-chairs of the LGBT Equality Caucus praised the president's gay rights record but sought clarification on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which his administration is trying to fast-track through Congress.

'We urge you to bring consistency to the administration’s foreign and trade policy,' the letter reads.

January 5, 2015

Independent candidate is both transgender and an 'untouchable'

An independent candidate yesterday (4 January) became the first transgender mayor of an Indian city after winning election in Raigarh.

Madhu Kinnar, 35, beat the incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate by 4,537 votes in Chhattisgarh state's sixth largest city.

December 24, 2014

Governor wants to take his gay marriage battle to the Supreme Court

A federal judge has ordered Idaho to pay more than $400,000 to the lawyers who successfully fought the state's gay marriage ban.

US Magistrate Judge Candy Dale on Friday (19 December) awarded the six lawyers a total $401,663, which is still about 10% less than what they requested.

'There is no dispute that plaintiffs are the prevailing parties and are therefore entitled to an award of reasonable attorney fees and litigation expenses,' she wrote in an order.

December 22, 2014

But only Congress can legalize gay marriage

The Philippine presidential palace yesterday (21 December) said it 'respects' the rights of gay couples to marry but any plans to legalize same-sex marriage had to come from Congress.

During a radio interview, Malacañang Palace communications secretary Herminio Coloma Jr was asked to comment on the recent marriage of transgender singer Aiza Seguerra to his actress girlfriend, Liza Dino, in California.

December 16, 2014

She is among the 80 lawmakers demanding ban be replaced with a policy based on individual risk factors

A coalition of federal lawmakers called on the US government to end its lifetime ban on gay men donating blood.

The letter to the federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was led by the first openly gay US senator - Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin - as well as fellow Senate Democrats Tom Harkin of Iowa and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Democratic members of the US House of Representatives Barbara Lee of California and Mike Quigley of Illinois.

December 7, 2014

A coalition of Chilean lawmakers from the Christian Democrats, Socialist Party, Party for Democracy and Amplitude political movement will introduce a bill to legalize same-sex marriage in the hope that the government will support the reform

There are hopes that Chile may become the 21st country to legalize same-sex marriage this month as a cross party group of lawmakers have pledged to introduce a bill on the issue before the end of next week.

The MPs, from the Christian Democrats, Socialist Party, Party for Democracy and Amplitude movement, say they expect the bill to go to the Congress on Wednesday or Thursday and hope that the Government of Michelle Bachelet will back the reform.

December 2, 2014

'Let Glory diadem the mighty dead/Let monuments of brass and marble rise/To those who have upon our being shed/A golden halo, borrowed from the skies'

There is a new Walt Whitman poem to memorize.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln associate professor Wendy Katz was working her way through penny newspapers at the Library of Congress when she came across a work titled To Bryant, the Poet of Nature. The author was listed as W.W.

October 30, 2014

They say the law is urgent after the murder of a transgender woman by a US marine

Two Philippine lawmakers have expressed their intent to file a bill to curb anti-gay hate crimes following the murder of a transgender woman by a US marine.

Akbayan Party List Representative Barry Gutierrez and Dinagat Islands Representative Kaka Bag-ao have called for a nationwide protection of LGBTI people.

Several cities and states, including Quezon City, have passed local anti-discrimination laws but there is now national.

September 30, 2014

Christians rally in Coahuila a month after the state legalized gay marriage

An estimated 30,000 people marched on Sunday in Coahuila to protest the Mexican state's new gay marriage law.

The march was organized by the Christ Lives group in the state capital Saltillo, a week after the first gay couples were married in the northern state.

Pastor Carlos Pacheco, director of the evangelical Christian group, led the march carrying a large Bible while activists distributed pamphlets on gay 'cures.'

August 8, 2014

14 lesbians and four gay men submitted an appeal to Congress demanding not just marriage equality, but adoption, social security and all the rights that heterosexuals enjoy with marriage

A group of 18 gay and lesbian Mexicans are stepping up the fight for gay marriage in Baja California Sur, bordered by the northern state of Baja California.

According to BCS Noticias, the group this week submitted an appeal to the Judicial Power of the Federation (PJF) urging Congress and the governor Marcos Covarrubias Villaseñor to change articles 330 and 150 of the Baja California civil code to allow same-sex marriages in the state.

August 5, 2014

Bid launched to ensure religiously-affiliated adoption agencies continue to receive US funding even if they refuse to deal with LGBT prospective parents

The Family Equality Council is the latest campaigning group to react with protest at the news that a US Federal Bill could create, what it calls, ‘adoption discrimination’.

July 29, 2014

Because the leaders of the two African countries refuse to change their laws criminalizing homosexuality, 10 American politicians want President Obama to hit them where it hurts: Their economy

Almost a dozen of America’s senators want US President Barack Obama to reconsider trade agreements with Nigeria and Uganda because of their homophobic laws.

Obama is scheduled to meet with African leaders next month from 4 to 6 August during the first-ever African Leaders Summit held in Washington DC.

July 28, 2014

Nigeria’s State Security Service have arrested a ‘homosexual cross-dresser,’ over a an attempted assassination on the country’s former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari but the country’s Opposition think it’s a set up

Nigeria’s Osun Defender newspaper is reporting that the country’s State Security Service has arrested a ‘clearly homosexual cross-dresser’ as the ‘suspected mastermind’ of an attempted suicide bombing attack on former dictator Major General Muhammadu Buhari.

The State Security Service apprehended the ‘homosexual cross-dresser’ near the site of the bombing near a market in Kaduna in which 80 people were killed and three aides of Buhari were injured.

July 18, 2014

Will protect employees of federal contractors from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity

US President Barack Obama has chosen Monday (21 July) as the day he will make good on his promise to sign an executive order to prohibit discrimination against LGBTI employees.

The order will apply to an estimated 28 million people - one-fifth of the US workforce - who work for federal contractors and the federal government.

July 4, 2014

Reverend Irene Monroe explains why two recent Supreme Court decisions could be game changers for straight and LGBTI women in the worst way

This month in the US we celebrate the Fourth of July with rounds of festivities marking America's 238 years of independence.

People will be singing the Star Spangled Banner, or reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, or reenacting the Continental Congress of 1776.

Many will simply be singing reproductions of the ‘rockets red glare and bombs bursting in air’.

All of this and more will be done on a grander and highly commercialized scale. All this happens at home as our American troops continue to soldier on.

July 1, 2014

Makes surprise announcement during White House Pride reception

At a White House reception celebrating LGBTI pride, US President Barack Obama surprised attendees when he announced plans to sign an executive order protecting all federal workers from gender identity discrimination.

This is in addition to the executive order he plans to sign to protect employees of federal contractors from anti-LGBTI discrimination.

Obama's action is taking place as the US House of Representatives continues to stall the Employment Non-Discrimination Act already passed by the US Senate.

June 20, 2014

One of the Channel Islands is being told to 'pull its finger out' and give gay couples the right to marry

The Channel Island of Jersey is being told to introduce same-sex marriage.

The Trade Union Congress has launched a campaign to ensure the island, the British crown dependency off the coast of France, supports equal marriage today (20 June).

In a letter to Ian Gorst, Jersey’s chief minister, the trade union General Secretary Frances O’Grady has said gay marriage has proved a popular move among politicians and the wider public.

‘Not everyone wants to get married, but those who do should be able to – their sexuality shouldn’t be a barrier,’ she said.

June 18, 2014

'In the United States of America, who you are and who you love shouldn't be a fireable offense'

The day before speaking at a Democratic National Committee LGBT fundraiser in New York City Tuesday (17 June), President Barack Obama had already let it be known that he was taking action on a long-simmering issue.

As the Republican-controlled House of Representatives continues to ignore the Senate-passed Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), Obama has finally agreed to sign an executive order that would offer some of the protections as that long-delayed legislation.

June 3, 2014

Peter Purton, LGBT policy officer for the Trade Union Congress, looks at the evolution and current state of homophobia in schools, work and sport

It’s easy to think how good things are for LGBT people in Britain today, particularly when compared to Russia, with Putin’s law banning ‘homosexual propaganda’, or Uganda, Nigeria, or Brunei, where the government just introduced stoning to death for adulterers and those caught having homosexual relations.

Here in Britain we can now get married!

May 22, 2014

Milk joins other civil rights pioneers honored with stamps including Martin Luther King Jr and Caesar Chavez

Americans can now begin mailing letters with a stamp bearing the likeness of Harvey Milk, one of the nation’s first openly gay elected officials.

The stamp was dedicated at a White House ceremony on Thursday (22 May) which was attended by Stuart Milk, co-founder of the Harvey Milk Foundation and the slain politician's nephew.

'We have this beautiful stamp to remind us that hope resides in you, hope resides in me,' Stuart Milk told the crowd. 'As President (Barack) Obama said about Harvey: `Hope unashamed. Hope unafraid."'

May 19, 2014

The Congressman pushing for civil unions in Peru has come out as gay as he continues to push for the reform in the South American nation

Lima Congressman Carlos Bruce has come out as gay – becoming the first openly gay member of Congress in Peruvian history.

Bruce, a long time campaigner for civil unions for same-sex couples, made the revelation in an interview with the El Comercio newspaper published on Sunday.

‘Yes, I am gay and I am proud to belong to this group of people who are so valuable to Peru,’ Bruce told the newspaper.

Bruce was asked why he had waited until now to come out,

May 19, 2014

The two sons of gay Peruvian politician Carlos Bruce say they don’t care their father is gay, and they support him completely in his coming out

Newly-out Peruvian politician Carlos Bruce has been congratulated for coming out by his two sons, saying his sexuality does not bother them at all.

Last week Bruce, a congressman in the capital Lima, became the first openly gay member of Congress in Peruvian history.

Since his coming out was published in newspaper El Comercio, his two sons Alex and Paul, have said they don’t care about his sexuality and they don’t judge him.

May 7, 2014

Darrell Trigg believes God wants him to rule the US, and to drive LGBTI Americans back underground

Darrell Trigg, author of Developing a More Effective Prayer Life: A Practical Approach, has declared his intentions to run for President of the United States of America.

He will run as an independent, but in the future will create the Christian Political Party. If you haven’t heard of him or his intentions, don’t feel bad. In terms of his real objective and vision, he is not actually running for President.

May 2, 2014

The gay man who came second place in the 2003 American Idol contest is trying to unseat Republican incumbent Renee Ellmers and take North Carolina’s 2nd congressional district for the Democrats

2003 American Idol runner-up Clay Aiken is making a bid for national political office in his home state of North Carolina, hoping his star power can unseat a Republican incumbent for the Democrats.

Aiken announced his candidacy with a campaign website and video on 5 February but it had gone largely unnoticed until he made a guest appearance on Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report to discuss why he is running for office.