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Content about United States

September 17, 2014

The US retailer appears to be working harder to assert its diversity and LGBTI-friendly credentials

US retail giant Target has not always stuck out its neck in support for LGBTI rights.

In 2010, it emerged that it had previously made financial donations to Republican politicians fiercely opposed to advancing gay rights, prompting a short-lived boycott by some customers.

September 17, 2014

John ‘Longjones’ Abdallah Wambere has been arrested, evicted and beaten in his home country

A prominent Ugandan gay activist for more than 17 years has been recommended for asylum in the United States, Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) announced today.

John ‘Longjones’ Abdallah Wambere, co-founder of LGBTI rights group Spectrum Uganda Initiatives, has been in the US since February and filed for asylum in May.

In Uganda, Wambere was outed as gay by newspapers, harassed by strangers, received death threats from anonymous phone calls, arrested, evicted from his home and beaten up.

September 15, 2014

Neither funny lady knows the words to the tune but both go all out anyway

It was kind of like what you might hear at a karaoke bar - only worse.

Funny ladies Ellen DeGeneres and Kristen Wiig decided to duet on the Oscar-winning song Let it Go from Disney's animated smash Frozen on Ellen's daytime show.

The fact that neither one knew the words did not deter them from giving it a go.

The results aren't anything that will end up on iTunes anytime soon but no one can say they aren't fearless.

September 15, 2014

Gay rights activists are outraged by Pennsylvania's blasphemy laws, with some saying: 'This is not Russia or Iran; this is the United States'

A teenager is facing jail after simulating gay oral sex with a Jesus statue.

The 14-year-old western Pennsylvanian, unnamed by the press, was charged under a rarely used 1972 law that makes it a crime to desecrate a venerated object after he posted the pictures online. The teen did not damage the statue, but simply posted a picture that some find offensive.

The statue of Jesus kneeling in prayer belongs to Love in the Name of Christ, a Christian organization with a branch of Everett.

September 13, 2014

'With their political stance on gay rights and because the students of Ventura High School and their parents would be at the event, I didn’t want them on campus'

A California high school principal prohibited a booster club from selling Chik-fil-A sandwiches  because of the company's stance on gay marriage.

According to CBS 2 Los Angeles Val Wyatt, principal of Ventura High School, argued the food could not be sold at a back to school program because some parents and students might be offended.

September 12, 2014

'...Over the last few decades a number of well-known, reputable professional and scientific organizations have publicly condemned the practice of SOCE [sexual orientation change efforts]...'

A US court unanimously upheld New Jersey's ban on 'anti-gay' therapy for teenagers.

A panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit ruled today (11 September) that the east coast state's law, prohibiting therapists from using conversion counseling with people under 18, does not violate free speech rights.

September 12, 2014

Veronica Romero and Mayra Yvette Rivera have been together for more than 27 years

The state of Indiana will recognize the marriage of a lesbian couple - one of whom has advanced ovarian cancer.

US District Judge Joseph Van Bokkelen approved an agreement this week (11 September) as the state appeals a ruling that struck down its marriage ban.

Veronica Romero and Mayra Yvette Rivera, a couple for more than 27 years with two children, were legally married in Illinois earlier this year. They filed a suit in federal court this week seeking to have the union recognized in the state in which they live.

September 10, 2014

Activists are calling on the US to review its relationship with the African country

Human rights groups have condemned the passage of a bill in the Gambia that punishes acts of 'aggravated homosexuality' with life imprisonment.

The Gambian National Assembly passed the bill last month, which now awaits approval from outspoken anti-gay President Yahya Jammeh. The bill targets 'serial offenders' and people living with HIV/AIDS.

September 10, 2014

Activists are calling on the US to review its relationship with the African country

Human rights groups have condemned the passage of a bill in the Gambia that punishes acts of 'aggravated homosexuality' with life imprisonment.

The Gambian National Assembly passed the bill last month, which now awaits approval from outspoken anti-gay President Yahya Jammeh. The bill targets 'serial offenders' and people living with HIV/AIDS.

September 10, 2014

Gilbert reveals her pregnancy on the air this week on The Talk

Sara Gilbert shared some big news with the audience of The Talk this week: she's pregnant.

This will be Gilbert's third child but her first with wife Linda Perry who she married earlier this year.

Her co-hosts seemed genuinely surprised as Gilbert revealed her pregnancy during a facing your fears segment of the show.

The one-time Roseanne cast member was discussing how she had been dared to stretch out over a bed of nails and allow a cinder block to be broken over her stomach.

September 9, 2014

Three judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals left gay marriage supporters optimistic after challenging arguments used to uphold same-sex marriage bans in three states

The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco heard arguments this week for and against gay marriage in three states.

Justices Stephen Reinhardt, Ronald Gould and Marsha Berzon listened as supporters and opponents of gay marriage in Idaho, Hawaii and Nevada made their cases.

Even though same-sex marriage in Hawaii has been legal since 2 December 2013, gay marriage supporters are seeking to ensure the state's Supreme Court doesn't overturn the law in the future.

September 9, 2014

HRC President Chad Griffin: 'I am sorry for the times you have been underrepresented or unrepresented by this organization'

The Human Rights Campaign has formally apologized to the transgender community for putting their issues on the back burner in the past.

'I am sorry for the times you have been underrepresented or unrepresented by this organization,' HRC President Chad Griffin said over the weekend at the Southern Comfort Conference in Atlanta.

September 9, 2014

A commemorative set of stamps honoring Finnish gay erotic artist Touko Laaksonen, AKA Tom of Finland, have been pre-ordered by people in 178 countries – busting all sales records for the country’s postal service

Stamps commemorating Finnish gay erotic artist Touko Laaksonen, who published his drawings under the name Tom of Finland, have been the biggest sellers in the history of Finland’s Posti postal service, with people pre-ordering the stamps in 178 countries.

The stamps went on sale on Monday, with the biggest overseas orders coming from Sweden, Britain, the United States and France.

September 7, 2014

'The time has come to end the divisive national debate as to whether the Constitution mandates same-sex marriage'

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wants the US Supreme Court to make a definitive ruling on gay marriage.

September 6, 2014

A student at Azusa Pacific University had a homophobic note pinned to his door on the first week of semester, telling him gay students are not welcome

A gay student at Azusa Pacific University (APU) in California, US returned to his room in the first week of semester to find a note pinned to his door.

However, this was not a welcome note, in fact quite the opposite. Scrawled in green pen were the words: ‘Faggots don’t belong at APU. GET OUT.’

The individual who received the note has not been revealed, but the image of the note which was pinned to his door has gone viral on Twitter.

Huffington Post blogger Heath Adam Ackley posted the image on his Twitter feed.

September 6, 2014

Smith's job will be to 'unleash the power of technology, data, and innovation'

Megan Smith, a top executive with Google for nearly a decade, has been appointed US Chief Technology Officer by President Barack Obama.

Smith, 49, succeeds Todd Park in the job which was created by Obama on his first full day in office in 2009. She is the third person to hold the position.

The job involves leading the administration's efforts to 'unleash the power of technology, data, and innovation to help meet our nation’s goals and the needs of our citizens,' according to The White House.

September 5, 2014

Says CNN anchor: 'As an adult when I got to know her I came to actually like her and appreciate her'

Joan Rivers got some laughs at Gloria Vanderbilt's expense back in the 70s and 80s but one person who wasn't laughing was the fashion icon's son.

That son grew up to be CNN anchor Anderson Cooper who recalled that period during a segment of his show Thursday (4 September) devoted to Rivers who had died earlier in the day.

'As a kid, I didn’t like her, because she actually made fun of my mom in some jokes when my mom was doing the jeans and stuff,' Cooper confessed.

'... As a little kid, I found it upsetting to see her making fun of my mom.'

September 4, 2014

Michael Urie: 'We weren’t finished with you, but thank you for it all'

Joan Rivers, queen of the showbiz comebacks, didn't have one final comeback in her.

The comedy legend died today - a week after she went into cardiac arrest during a medical procedure.

The announcement of her death by daughter Melissa Rivers has resulted in an instant outpouring of grief and tributes on social media from her fellow celebrities.

September 3, 2014

Ruling by US District Court Judge Martin Feldman ends streak of post-DOMA victories in federal courts

A US District Court judge today upheld the constitutionality of Louisiana's ban on gay marriage.

 

It marked the first defeat for a marriage equality case since the US Supreme Court gutting of the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013.

Judge Martin Feldman wrote that same-sex marriage is not a 'fundamental right' and that those defending the ban in the case offered 'a credible, and convincing, rational basis' for wanting the ban to continue.

September 2, 2014

Gay celebrity blogger has apologized after posting the leaked photos onto his website

Gay celebrity blogger Perez Hilton is being accused of being a 'sex offender' after posting leaked naked photos of Jennifer Lawrence.

The gossip writer published the nude images, believed to have been stolen or hacked from the Oscar-winning actress' iCloud, on his site shortly after they surfaced online.

Numerous people on social media called him out for publishing the private images, with some calling him a 'sex offender', 'a rapist' and a 'desperate faggot' for his decision. None of these accusations are true.

September 1, 2014

'That feeling of, if I'm not perfect, if I'm not what people want me to be, no one will love me'

Jane Fonda says in a new interview that she was surprised at how much gay men related to her acclaimed 2004 autobiography My Life So Far.

'When I wrote my memoir, which I assumed was mostly a woman's story that would be appreciated by women, what really struck me is how many men - especially gay men - really responded to it,' Fonda says in the September issue of Out Magazine.

Fonda has been married three times - to director Roger Vadim, politician Tom Hayden and CNN founder Ted Turner - and wrote that she changed herself considerably for each man.

August 30, 2014

'There's no way I could live with myself if I thought I was diminishing another human being's ability to reach their full capacity'

Neil Abercrombie, the governor of Hawaii, thinks he lost a recent primary because he signed the bill that made gay marriage legal.

Earlier this month, the Democrat was defeated by state Senator David Ige, who also supports marriage equality.

'Republicans crossed over en masse to vote in the Democratic primary, and then the religious factor came in,' Abercrombie said, as reported by the Associated Press.

August 29, 2014

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have married after nine years together, breaking a longstanding pledge to not get married until same-sex couples can, though we suspect most will forgive them after years of speaking out for the LGBTI community

Long time Hollywood allies of the LGBTI community Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have reneged on a 2006 pledge to not get married until same-sex marriage is legalized across America but we suspect most people will forgive them after years of advocacy by the couple for gay rights.

The couple were reported to have married in France on Saturday in a small private ceremony in a chateau near Nice.

The couple were married by a Californian judge who also provided their marriage license.

August 29, 2014

They file official request for high court review a day after plaintiffs in Virginia case do the same

It seems likely that the US Supreme Court will take on a gay marriage case next year but the question is which case will be the one to settle the issue once and for all.

Plaintiffs in a Utah case made clear on Thursday (28 August) that they want their lawsuit to be heard by the high court by officially filing a brief making that request.

The three couples challenging Utah’s ban on marriage for same-sex couples asked the court to accept the request of Utah state officials to review the case.