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Content about Don't Ask, Don't Tell

June 10, 2015

Announcement comes four years after repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ - but transgender service members can still be kicked out

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter confirmed yesterday that the Pentagon is updating its Military Equal Opportunity Policy to include sexual orientation as a protected class.

A reported previously the expected move – coming four years after the end of US Military’s ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy towards gay troops – has been regarded as long overdue by LGBT advocates in the armed forces.

June 4, 2015

Former Texas governor once compared being gay to being an alcoholic

Former Texas Governor Rick Perry, who made a series of gaffes while vying for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, is giving it another try.

'I'm running for the presidency of the United States,' Perry said at a rally in Addison, Texas.

Perry first released a video online early Thursday morning in which he said in part: 'We need a president who bridges the partisan divide rather than widen -- who brings people together. We must do right and risk the consequences.'

May 30, 2015

gon is updating its Military Equal Opportunity policy to cover gays, lesbians and bisexuals

The Pentagon is preparing to update its Military Equal Opportunity policy to include sexual orientation as a protected class.

The change could be made final as soon as the end of next month which is nearly four years after the official end of Don't Ask Don't Tell.

The American Military Partner Association (AMPA), the nation’s largest organization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender military families called the plan a 'critical change' and 'long overdue.'

May 28, 2015

First legal action of its kind at the country's top court

A young lawyer in the Philippines has challenged the constitutionality of the country's family code, which defines marriage as between man and woman.

Jesus Nicardo M Falcis III filed a petition at the Supreme Court on 18 May, the first legal action of its kind at the top court. The 31-page document was released on Tuesday (26 May).

Falcis, an 'open and self-identified homosexual,' asked the court to nullify provisions in the 1987 Family Code that limit marriage to man and woman.

May 1, 2015

But 57% think businesses should not be allowed to turn away LGBTI customers on religious grounds

Most Americans think the government should protect religious liberties over LGBTI rights when the two come into conflict, a new poll has found.

But 57% think businesses should not be allowed to turn away LGBTI customers on religious grounds.

AP-GfK polled 1,077 adults online between 23 and 27 April, just before the Supreme Court started hearing oral arguments on whether state bans on gay marriage are constitutional,

On the case, 50% said the justices should rule that gay marriage must be legal nationwide, compared to 48% who said they should not.

April 21, 2015

New books by Barney Frank and Michelangelo Signorile show our past struggles and a path to future victory

For years, the radical anti-gay movement has made a paranoid case that ‘the gay agenda’ was an actual book published in 1990. That book was called After the Ball: How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90s.

It outlined a suggested plan for addressing America on LGBT issues. Much of its outlook was basic common sense and PR.

March 18, 2015

First openly gay congressman in US history shares his thoughts on his fallen former colleague

When former US Congressman Barney Frank got word that his former colleague, Aaron Schock, was resigning from office, this was his first question: 'He was outed or what?'

Frank, the first openly gay man to serve in the House of Representatives, assumed Schock's quitting had to do with his not disclosing he had taken a male videographer-photographer with him on a trip to India over the summer.

March 17, 2015

'Constant questions over the last six weeks have proven a great distraction that has made it too difficult for me to serve'

Aaron Schock, a Republican congressman from Illinois, announced today that he is resigning from the US House of Representatives.

Schock has been embroiled in a string of controversies involving his spending on such things as private jets, mileage reimbursements and interior decorating. He also reportedly did not properly disclose that he was accompanied to India on an official trip by a male photographer and videographer.

March 14, 2015

Lawmaker may have violated rules by not disclosing photographer and videographer Jonathon Link was on trip

It used to be that Aaron Schock, a Republican congressman from Illinois, was in the news far more his impressive physique than any legislation he championed.

But in recent weeks, the former Men's Health cover man has been embroiled in a string of controversy involving his spending on such things as private jets and interior decorating.

The latest headache involves an official trip to India last summer accompanied by a photographer and videographer named Jonathon Link (pictured below) whose travel expenses were covered by The Global Poverty Project.

February 23, 2015

Ash Carter: 'I don’t think anything but their suitability for service should preclude them'

New US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter has come out in favor of transgender people being able to serve openly in the military.

Appearing at a town-hall meeting in Afghanistan, said he aims to make 'service as attractive as possible to our best people in our country … provided they can do what we need them to do for us.'

Carter added that he doesn't think 'anything but their suitability for service should preclude them.'

February 19, 2015

Caution urged after draft report details potential policy change

The US Army is reportedly considering making it easier for transgender people to serve in the military.

A draft document obtained by USA Today proposes raising the authorisation level needed to initiate dismissal proceedings against trans service members.

The leaked report, which has not been adopted as official directive, does not rescind current Army policy, which considers transgender people "administratively unfit" for service.

January 25, 2015

The general, who is married to a woman, says he knows of others senior military who are similarly fearful of discussing their sexuality

A senior general in the British Army has revealed to a newspaper that he is gay and is deciding whether to publicly out himself. The man in question is married to a woman and has children.

January 13, 2015

Calpernia Addams, who’s life story was the basis of the movie A Soldier’s Girl, will take part in the 2015 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Festival as a special guest at the Gender Trailblazers event

The organizers of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras announced earlier today that American Transgender actress, artist, activist and LGBTI cultural icon, Calpernia Addams will be taking part in a special 2015 festival event focussing on transgender issues.

The 2014 Gender Trailblazers event saw Chaz Bono and Australian Defense Force Lt Colonel Cate McGregor AM share their inspiring stories to a packed theater.

Now in 2015 Addams will be a special guest at Gender Trailblazers at Sydney’s Seymour Center in Chippendale on Saturday 21 February at 7.30pm.

January 1, 2015

But a pre-date phone call ended any romantic notions

Imagine what a power couple Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen could have been.

The dashing, silver-haired CNN anchor and 60 Minutes correspondent and the ever-smiling host of Bravo's Watch What Happens Live (WWHL) and producer of the popular Housewives reality show franchise.

It turns out they were originally supposed to be a romantic pair and were once set up on a date by a mutual friend.

'When we were set up … we had a phone call to talk before we actually went out on a date,' Cooper said recently while guesting on WWHL.

December 31, 2014

US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and his wife Lilibet included an image of a US Navy sailor proposing to his boyfriend among images of military families in a Christmas video to defense personnel

A gay couple have been included in a Christmas video to defense personnel from the US Secretary of Defense for the very first time this year.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel made the video with his wife Lilibet to send to US military families, and a photographic montage along that theme in the video shows a US sailor proposing to his partner at a naval base.

‘This month as you gather with family and friends Lilibeth and I want to wish all of you a very merry Christmas and happy holidays,’ Chuck Hagel says in the video.

December 11, 2014

''The circuit courts of appeal are split as to whether a law restricting what counselors or health-care providers may say and what clients or patients may hear in the privacy of the counselor-client or doctor-patient relationship is speech protected by the First Amendment'

Conversion therapy advocates are taking the battle to the US Supreme Court.

Lawyers for two counselors, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality, and the American Association of Christian Counselors filed a petition requesting the highest court to review New Jersey's 'ex-gay' therapy ban for minors.

October 23, 2014

Texas Republican Louie Gohmert has told talk radio that he believes that gay soldiers will not be ready to defend against sudden attacks because they will need to get massages first before going into battle like the Ancient Greeks

Outspoken anti-gay Republican congressman Louie Gohmert has used an appearance on the Point of View radio talk show to make a bizarre attack on gays and lesbians serving in the US military – claiming that they will not be battle ready in the event of a sudden attack.

Gohmert made the comments a day after the third anniversary of the end of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy that barred openly gay and lesbian personnel from serving, saying he still believes allowing them to serve ‘is not a good idea.’

October 11, 2014

'Homo[sexuality] is a problem for us'

Twenty-one years ago, when Bill Clinton was in the White House, the Democratic president formed a military policy called 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.'

The code permitted gay, lesbian, and bisexual troops to serve in the US military as long as they were not out. Yesterday, 10 October, the Clinton Library released documents chronicling the debate in creating the plan.

October 11, 2014

'Homo[sexuality] is a problem for us'

Twenty-one years ago, when Bill Clinton was in the White House, the Democratic president formed a military policy called 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.'

The code permitted gay, lesbian, and bisexual troops to serve in the US military as long as they were not out. Yesterday, 10 October, the Clinton Library released documents chronicling the debate in creating the plan.

May 20, 2014

Staff Sgt. Tracy Dice Johnson will be the first spouse of a member of the US armed forces to receive equal death benefits over her National Guard wife Donna’s death in Afghanistan in 2012

Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Tracy Dice Johnson will be the first ever military spouse to receive the same death benefits given to heterosexual widows and widowers when their spouses die in the line of duty.

Tracy married wife Donna Johnson in Washington in February of 2012 but she was killed by a suicide bomber just months later in Afghanistan in October that year.

April 29, 2014

Two openly gay veterans of the Iraq war were planning to use Mint Springs Farm in Tennessee to host their commitment ceremony but the owners have refused to let them, claiming the state’s ban on same-sex marriage prevents them

A wedding venue in Tennessee is denying a pair of Iraq War veterans the use of their facilities because they are a gay couple.

Anthony Wilfert and Brian Blas met while stationed at Fort Campbell nine years ago and became a couple despite the then policy of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell that banned openly gay people from serving in the military.

April 28, 2014

A US navy communications specialist has spoken out to The Washington Post about being discharged for transitioning to being male – showing that part of the LGBTI community is still legally barred from serving in the US Armed Forces

Transgender sailor Landon Wilsonhas spoken out about being forcefully discharged by the US Navy after superiors discovered he had transitioned to be a male – showing that some LGBTI people still face legal discrimination in the US Armed Forces past the end of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

The US Defense Department still retains a policy that was set when being transgender was viewed as a form of mental illness and classes it as a ‘paraphilia.’

March 3, 2014

A charity drag show by personnel at a US military installation on the Japanese island of Okinawa sold out Saturday – stunning organizers

A drag fundraiser for US LGBTI military network Outserve-SLDN sold out on Saturday after organizers issued more than four times the number of tickets they originally thought they would need for the show.

Organizers of the event, held at the Rocker NCO Club on the grounds of Kadena Air Base on the Japanese island of Okinawa, originally expected to only need about 75 tickets for the show – but ended up selling 400 tickets, maxing out the venue’s capacity.

January 30, 2014

Itay Hod believes closeted politicians with anti-gay voting records should be outed: 'I made it very clear as to who I was talking about'

Itay Hod was already not a fan of Aaron Schock, a Republican congressman from Illinois who has toed the party line and consistently voted against pro-LGBT legislation.

But the openly gay freelance journalist, who worked for CBS News for several years, reached his boiling point earlier this month when he heard a story about Schock from a friend, a fellow reporter.