Marriage Equality Progresses, UPS Drops Boy Scouts, ‘Kill The Gays’ Bill Is Still Alive, and Everything Else From This Week In LGBT News

This week’s batch of stories certainly doesn’t fail to live up to last week’s milestone victories and hype. President Obama has officially nominated Judge William L. Thomas for a federal judgeship in Fla., which would make Thomas the first out black male judge to serve at the federal level. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said same-sex marriage is his No. 3 priority for legislation and he expects to be “very involved” in passing a gay marriage bill. In Oregon, Rep. Tina Kotek will become the country’s first openly lesbian lawmaker, following her appointment as the next speaker of the state’s legislative chamber.

A recent poll shows 51 percent of Americans are in favor of same-sex marriage, making this the fifth consecutive poll that places the majority of the country on the pro side of the issue. 47 percent of those who responded were opposed.

Everyone’s favorite homophobes, the Boy Scouts of America, are due to lose a major amount of funding. A new UPS non-discrimination policy will disqualify the Boy Scouts from any future contributions. UPS follows in the Intel Foundation’s lead in dropping sponsorship of the Boy Scouts.

To respond to cases of bullying in schools disallowing students from feeling comfortable enough to attend school and thus dropping out, One-n-ten a local Arizona nonprofit partnered with Arizona Virtual Academy to form Q High, which provides gay youth a way to get an education without having to worry about taunting and abuse from their peers.

Internationally, the biggest news has come from Uganda where a grossly harsh and antiquated piece of legislation that “originally mandated death for some gay acts” is going to become law before the end of the year, according to the Washington Post. Parliament speaker Rebecca Kadaga cites a demand from Ugandans and the threat homosexuality poses to the country’s children as serious reasons to go forward with the bill, despite widespread international criticism.

The Washington Post reported that, according to the Associated Press, more than 25,000 signatures have been collected in support of a campaign to pressure government to ban same-sex marriages in Liberia. The United Nations Human Rights office has come out against Cameroon’s anti-gay laws, criticizing the country’s penal code for violating its human rights commitments as the anti-gay law—five years in prison and a fine for any person found to be in a same-sex relationship—is an infraction against international human rights law.

In Greece, a production of “Corpus Christi” was met with bouts of protests and outrage, leading to its cancellation this month, in response to the play’s depiction of Jesus and his apostles as gay. Bishop Seraphim of Piraeus filed suit against the individuals associated with the production, citing charges of “insulting religion” and “malicious blasphemy.”

Italy elected its second openly gay governor last month, as Rosario Crocetto replaced a governor charged with having associations with the mafia. Crocetto is a left-wing politician, Catholic and anti-mafia in addition to being openly gay, all of which together make him a striking contrast to previous elected officials in the region.


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image via Flickr user Paul_Lowry

About Stephen Autar

Stephen Autar is a journalism student in the last years of teenagehood. Originally from the Bronx, New York, he's been writing for almost all of his life and a homosexual for even longer. He's written personal essays for The Huffington Post, politics and culture for PolicyMic, and is currently a managing editor at NU Intel, amongst other things. Tweet him at @stephenautar, find him on Facebook, or maybe you'll run into his OkCupid profile. In any case, be sure to say hi! He's always looking for more friends.

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