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28th Febuary 2003 (# 3) News Clippings Digest

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  • grahamu_1999 <grahamu_1999@yahoo.com>
    28th Febuary 2003 (# 3) News Clippings Digest 1. NEW YORK TIMES Some Gays Criticize Mayor s Decision to March in St. Patrick s Parade 2. SALT LAKE TRIBUNE
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 2, 2003
      28th Febuary 2003 (# 3) News Clippings Digest

      1. NEW YORK TIMES Some Gays Criticize Mayor's Decision to March in
      St. Patrick's Parade
      2. SALT LAKE TRIBUNE Column excerpt: Eagle Forum Wings Clipped
      Twice in Week
      3. SALT LAKE TRIBUNE Hate Crimes Bill Survives Debate, Clears the
      House
      4. BBC NEWS London's Hyde Park to host gay festival this summer
      5. DETROIT FREE PRESS Family says M2F transgender's slaying could
      be a hate crime
      6. STAFFORDSHIRE SENTINEL (England) Stoke-On-Trent Gay Parade
      Could Boost Pride In City
      7. NEWS.COM.AU (Australia) It wouldn't be Sydney Gay & Lesbian
      Mardi Gras without milk crates
      8. NY1 (New York City) Grovelling: Some of the city's gay and
      lesbian politicians ask Mayor Michael Bloomberg to invite them to
      march in the "real" St. Patrick's Day Parade
      9. THE OREGONIAN Letter: Support groups can help gay teens

      New York Times, February 28, 2003
      229 W. 43rd Street, New York, NY, 10036
      (Fax: 212-556-3622 ) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.nytimes.com )
      http://www.nytimes.com/2003/02/28/nyregion/28PARA.html
      Gays Criticize Mayor's Decision to March in St. Patrick's Parade
      By Jennifer Steinhauer
      A group of gay elected officials and community organizers
      yesterday
      criticized Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's decision to march in the St.
      Patrick's Day Parade this year. They said that because gays are
      forbidden
      to march under their own banner, the mayor should shun the parade,
      much as
      he did the Columbus Day Parade when its organizers refused to let
      him bring
      television stars from "The Sopranos."
      The St. Patrick's Day Parade has been a political prickly
      pear,
      pitting gays and lesbians against the Ancient Order of Hibernians,
      which
      organizes the parade and has forbidden openly gay marchers. In the
      middle
      are the politicians, who must decide each year whether to march.
      The Hibernians say the parade is protected by the First
      Amendment
      guarantees of freedom of religion, speech and assembly. A federal
      judge
      upheld their opinion in 1993. Anyone can march, but marchers are
      prohibited
      from carrying banners that would identify them as gay.
      Mr. Bloomberg plans to do what he did last year, said his
      press
      secretary, Edward Skyler. He will attend a parade in the Rockaways,
      Queens,
      tomorrow; another, which includes gay marchers, in Woodside, Queens,
      on
      Sunday; another in Throgs Neck, the Bronx, on March 16; and the main
      event
      on Fifth Avenue on St. Patrick's Day, March 17. A breakfast at
      Gracie
      Mansion before that march will include gay groups.
      Yesterday, City Councilwoman Christine C. Quinn asked the
      mayor to
      invite Irish gays to march with him, or to boycott the parade as he
      did the
      Columbus Day Parade, when Lorraine Bracco and Dominic Chianese
      of "The
      Sopranos" were barred because organizers said the show had negative
      Italian
      stereotypes. "Why is discrimination against two actors for who they
      play on
      television somehow worse than discrimination against an entire class
      of New
      Yorkers and Americans?" Ms. Quinn asked at a news conference.
      Mr. Skyler said the mayor supports gays in their bid to join
      the
      Fifth Avenue march. As for Ms. Quinn's request, he said in an e-mail
      message, "The mayor's marching plans have already been arranged, but
      he
      looks forward to seeing her at Gracie Mansion."


      Salt Lake Tribune, February 28, 2003
      P. O. Box 867, Salt Lake City, UT, 84110
      (Fax: 801-257-8950) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.sltrib.com )
      http://www.sltrib.com/2003/feb/02282003/utah/33759.asp
      Rolly & Wells: Eagle Forum Wings Clipped Twice in Week
      By Paul Rolly and JoAnn Jacobsen-Wells, Tribune Columnists
      This has not been Eagle Forum leader Gayle Ruzicka's best
      week.
      Not only did her statement about the LDS Church's stand on
      hate-crimes legislation generate a church response that she
      was "wrong," but
      she has been ordered by the publisher of Heather Has Two Mommies
      to "cease
      and desist" distributing photocopies of the copyrighted pro-gay and
      lesbian
      book.
      Ruzicka said Monday the church's statement that it did not
      oppose the
      bill was actually made to quash rumors that it endorsed the bill. A
      church
      statement Wednesday denied her claim.
      Meanwhile, Greg Constante, publisher of Alyson Publications
      in Los
      Angeles, sent an e-mail to the Eagle Forum Web site stating those who
      distributed photocopies of the book at the rally were violating
      copyright
      laws.
      Constante noted, however, that attempts in the past to
      showcase the
      book in a negative light have generated additional sales.


      Salt Lake Tribune, February 28, 2003
      P. O. Box 867, Salt Lake City, UT, 84110
      (Fax: 801-257-8950) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.sltrib.com )
      Hate Crimes Bill Survives Debate, Clears the House
      By Kirsten Stewart, The Salt Lake Tribune, kstewart@...
      After two hours of emotional debate, a hate crimes bill six
      years in
      the making was approved Thursday by the Utah House of
      Representatives.
      The historic and unexpected 38-35 vote ended in tears of joy
      for
      sponsoring Rep. David Litvack, D-Salt Lake City, who was greeted
      with hugs
      and handshakes from Republican and Democratic colleagues.
      "I knew it would be touch and go, but believed we could get
      it done,"
      Litvack said.
      House Bill 85 will now go to the Senate for consideration.
      The bill would create stiffer penalties for crimes motivated
      by bias
      or prejudice against a victim's race, color, gender, disability, age,
      nationality, ancestry, religion or sexual orientation. House members
      amended the bill to include prejudicial crimes against individuals
      affiliated with a business.
      It amends a 1992 law that Utah courts have ruled is too broad
      and
      unenforceable.
      "We have had a statute on our books for 10 years that has
      never been
      used," said Litvack.
      As a result, racially motivated and other hate crimes
      continue at a
      steady rate, he said. "There is no neighborhood or area we
      represent that
      has not been touched by a hate crime, from Logan to St. George.
      Supremacist
      groups view Utah as ripe for the picking."
      Thursday was the first time in six years that the legislation
      reached
      the House floor due, in part, to groups opposed to what they say is
      a move
      to grant special rights for gays and lesbians.
      Those negative views were alluded to in a comment made by one
      lawmaker opposed to the bill.
      "BOHICA," said Rep. Glenn Donnelson, R-North Ogden, citing an
      acronym
      he later said stood for "bend over, here it comes again."
      "There has been a lot of nonsense floating around about this
      issue,"
      said co-sponsor Rep. Jim Ferrin, a Republican who once opposed hate
      crimes
      legislation. He said he changed his mind after becoming convinced
      such
      crimes are, by their very nature, more severe. I reject that this
      is part
      of an effort to teach homosexuality in schools as a legitimate
      lifestyle, an
      effort to legitimize homosexual marriages."
      The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which treats
      homosexuality as a sin, publicly stated it does not oppose the bill.
      But that did not stop some Republicans from opposing the
      measure.
      "The great debate in our nation has always been about equality,"
      said Rep.
      Stephen Urquhart, R-St. George. "What you're telling me with this
      statute
      is that a crime against a homosexual is not a crime against me."
      Said Rep. Margaret Dayton, R-Orem: "Any crime is a crime
      against
      humanity. I'm dismayed and disheartened that this legislation is
      even
      before us."
      Much was made of the courage displayed by Republicans who
      voted for
      Litvack's bill. But there was little mention of Democrats who
      temporarily
      abandoned Litvack - Reps. Eli Anderson, Jim Gowans and Neal
      Hendrickson.
      The three Democrats, respectively from Tremonton, Tooele and
      West
      Valley, abstained from voting on a substitute measure, but returned
      later to
      help pass the legislation after a Republican called the original
      bill back.
      Thanking Litvack for "bringing us one of the most meaningful
      debates
      we've had this session," Rep. Morgan Philpot, R-Murray - who then
      voted
      against the bill - said, "Could a tax increase be any more offensive
      to a
      conservative Republican than a hate crime?"
      . Tribune reporter Greg Burton contributed to this report.


      BBC News, February 28, 2003
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/2808757.stm
      Hyde Park to host gay festival
      One of London's royal parks will host the country's biggest
      gay
      festival for the first time this summer.
      Up to 60,000 people are expected to attend Pride in the Park,
      the
      festival formerly known as Mardi Gras, in Hyde Park on 26 July.
      It will mean a central London location for the carnival,
      which has
      been blighted by financial problems.
      Last year's venue switch from Finsbury Park to Hackney
      Marshes proved
      unpopular and left organisers with debts of nearly £500,000.
      This summer will be the first time the festival has been held
      in one
      of the royal parks and organisers hope to keep the venue and build
      up an
      annual event to rival Sydney's Mardi Gras.
      The colourful parade by gay rights campaigners will start at
      Embankment and go past the Houses of Parliament before ending up at
      Hyde
      Park.
      Entrance to the party will cost £20 in an attempt to recoup
      some of
      the £1.5m spent putting on the event.
      Mardi Gras Organisation chairman John Miskelly said: "No one
      will
      make a profit from this. This is not for personal profit.
      "The parade is free and the party is as cheap as we can make
      it. It
      is still cheaper than similar parties in the world. In Sydney it
      cost £90."
      London Mayor Ken Livingstone supported the move to a central
      London
      location.
      He said: "I believe that this is now here in the park for
      generations
      to come.
      "We can begin building it up into a major tourist attraction
      and one
      day we will hopefully be able to excel what they have in Sydney."


      Detroit Free Press, February 28, 2003
      321 W. Lafayette Blvd., Detroit, MI, 48231
      (Fax: 313-222-6774 ) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.freep.com/ )
      http://www.freep.com/news/mich/slay28_20030228.htm
      Family: Man's slaying could be a hate crime
      Victim found shot was a transgenderist
      By Alejandro Bodipo-Memba, Free Press Staff Writer
      Livingston County police continue to investigate the slaying
      of
      Anthony (Nikki) Nicholas last Friday, but family members and gay
      activists
      said this week they fear it was a hate crime.
      The body of the 19-year-old Detroit native was found shortly
      before 2
      p.m. Friday in an abandoned farmhouse near U.S. 23 and M-36 in Green
      Oak
      Township in Livingston County.
      Police said Nicholas, who was shot in the head, was dressed in
      women's clothing.
      "We think he was killed because he was gay," Willie Parker of
      Detroit, Nicholas' stepfather, said Thursday.
      Known to friends and family as Nikki, Nicholas was born a
      male but
      had lived as a woman for about two years.
      "We have no motive and we aren't willing to say it is a hate
      crime at
      this time," Green Oak Police Chief Robert Brookins said Thursday.
      Nicholas, who made a living as a female impersonator at area
      bars,
      lived as a transgenderist since he was 17, family members said. A
      transgenderist is a person who lives all or most of the time in a
      gender
      role different than the one associated with his or her biological or
      chromosomal sex, according to the Gender Equity Resource Center at
      the
      University of California at Berkeley.
      Nicholas' family members said the last time they saw or heard
      from
      him was around Jan. 8. Nicholas had been living in Southfield with
      friends,
      they said. "We don't know why this happened, but we believe in our
      hearts
      that it would have taken at least two people to do what they did to
      Anthony," Parker said. "He was a scrapper, and there is no way just
      one
      person could take him down, even with a gun."
      Triangle Foundation, a Detroit-based gay, lesbian, bisexual
      and
      transgender civil rights group, acknowledged Thursday that it is too
      early
      in the investigation to determine a motive for the killing. But
      officials
      of the group said the slaying appears to be hate-related.
      Reports of crimes based on sexual orientation and gender
      identification have been increasing over the last three or four
      years, said
      Jeffrey Montgomery, executive director of Triangle Foundation.
      "This is speculation, but in this case, based on the severity
      and the
      brutality that was used on the victim and the fact that this was a
      male in
      women's clothes and one who apparently lived very openly in that
      way, would
      lead us to be treating this as a bias-related killing," Montgomery
      said.
      Brookins said Nicholas' killing has not been classified as a
      hate
      crime.
      Investigators have conducted interviews in Detroit and
      Livingston
      County, Brookins said. The county's Major Case Task Force, which
      includes
      detectives from the Brighton Police Department, Michigan State
      Police and
      Livingston County Sheriff's Department, plans to meet later today to
      discuss
      the case.
      Nicholas' funeral will be at 11 a.m. Monday at the Swanson
      Funeral
      Home, 806 E. Grand Blvd, Detroit. Friends and family may call from
      6 to 9
      p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at the funeral home.
      Anyone who
      has information about the crime may call police at 810-231-9626 or
      810-227-1051 anytime.
      . Contact Alejandro Bodipo-Memba at 313-222-5008 or
      bodipo@....


      Staffordshire Sentinel, February 28, 2003
      Sentinel House, Etruria, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire ST1 5SS
      England
      (Fax: 01782 262617) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.thisisstaffordshire.co.uk )
      http://www.thisisstaffordshire.co.uk/displayNode.jsp?
      nodeId=67725&command=di
      splayContent&sourceNode=67252&contentPK=4414073
      Gay Parade Could Boost Pride In City
      Mary-Ann Astle
      Thousands of lesbians and gays are expected to take to the
      streets of
      Stoke-on-Trent when the city hosts its first ever gay pride parade.
      North
      Staffordshire gay rights group The Rainbow Forum are organising the
      event in
      Hanley on May 10.
      The move has been welcomed by city mayor Mike Wolfe who
      believes the
      parade will help put the city on the world map and aid regeneration.
      Gay pride parades began in New York in 1970 and the idea
      caught on in
      Britain a few years later. Parades now take place annually in large
      cities
      such as London, Manchester and Birmingham.
      Sandie Hope-Forest, forum chairman, said: "Stoke's been
      really busy
      in terms of gay rights and we've even had a branch of the Gay
      Liberation
      Movement here but we've never had a parade.
      "The gay pride parade in London isn't until June and the
      event in
      Manchester is in August. We're going to be the first place in
      England to
      put on a parade this year and we want to set the standard for
      everyone to
      follow.
      "There may be odd individuals who still have a problem with
      the gay
      community but by and large Stoke is very welcoming to its diverse
      communities."
      The parade will start from Hanley Town Hall at 12.30pm and
      will wind
      its way through the city's streets. Musicians will perform in
      Tontine
      Square and a main stage - with DJs and live entertainment - will be
      set up
      in Piccadilly.
      Sandie added: "We're asking all lesbian, gay, bisexual and
      transgender groups and individuals to come along and celebrate their
      sexual
      minority status. They'll be dancing, market stalls and street
      artists.
      "This is going to be a fun day for everyone and we want
      straight
      people to come along and join in the fun as well. The parade will
      help
      build bridges between the straight and the gay communities."
      Mayor Mike Wolfe said: "I welcome this parade and I think
      it's very
      important for the city to celebrate its diversity.
      "It is likely to lead to an increased involvement of the
      community in
      the regeneration of the city. It will also make clear to the rest
      of the
      world that Stoke-on-Trent is neither old fashioned or prejudiced and
      that's
      an important message to get across if we want to attract inward
      investment.
      Some people will be coming into Stoke for the very first time and we
      can
      show them just what we have to offer."
      Mr Wolfe pointed out that the economy of many communities have
      thrived through closer ties with the gay and lesbian community, such
      as the
      gay village in Manchester.
      The Rainbow Forum has been planning the event for three
      months and
      the next 10 weeks will be spent finalising bookings and putting
      security
      arrangements in place. The group - which is part-funded by the
      Robbie
      Williams Give It Sum fund - is also asking local venues to come
      forward to
      join in with the event and they're also searching for extra
      sponsorship.
      Anyone wishing to get involved in the parade can call the
      Rainbow
      Forum on 01782 865672.


      News.com.au (Australia), 1 March 2003
      http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,6057304%
      255E421,00.html
      Outfit milks Mardi Gras
      Tonight's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras is renowned for its
      scantily
      clad homosexuals, but it takes on another meaning for the owners of
      the
      multi-purpose milk crate.
      The parade is big business for Sydney company Brooksight
      Investigations, which will spend tonight collecting the 15,000
      crates that
      will be strewn along the roadways.
      The company's 40-strong crew will scour the city streets
      shortly
      after the last Nicole Kidman nose float goes through.
      While most people at the parade see the crates as little more
      than a
      disposable chair or stool, dairy companies consider them a valuable
      asset at
      $4.50 a piece.
      "The Mardi Gras is synonymous with milk crates," Brooksight's
      general
      manager Martyn Downs said. "If you go to the Mardi Gras, you take a
      milk
      crate.
      "There's nowhere else in Australia or in the world where you
      have
      this massive retrieval of milk crates."
      This year's 25th anniversary parade will be led by three
      floats
      featuring young people under 25 marching alongside participants in
      the first
      Mardi Gras parade in 1978.
      An enlarged version of Kidman's prosthetic nose - used in her
      role as
      the emotionally troubled author Virginia Woolf in The Hours - is
      expected to
      be a favourite.
      It will be closely followed by a float in honour of disgraced
      Australian cricketer Shane Warne.
      More than 140 floats will take part in tonight's extravaganza.
      The city's chief "crate-catcher" Brian Woods said the milk
      crates
      were popular at Mardi Gras because they helped people get a better
      view of
      the popular parade amid the hundreds of thousands of spectators.
      But he warned his colleagues were always on the look-out for
      shifty
      entrepreneurs hoping to sell the crates for $10 a pop.
      "You don't know who we are but we're out there," he said.
      Last year a man was charged with selling milk crates - which
      are the
      property of dairy companies - to those desperate for a seat or better
      vantage point.
      This year, Mardi Gras spectators can expect to be denied
      entry to
      buses and trains if they attempt to drag a milk crate along with
      them.
      A Transport NSW spokesman said "vast quantities" of the
      crates were
      collected after the parade each year.
      "To assist Mardi Gras organisers and Dairy Farmers, and for
      the
      comfort and safety of every passenger, the transport agencies will
      not allow
      milk crates on public transport," he said.
      But Mr Downs is still expecting his company - which
      specialises in
      "industrial recovery" - to have its work cut out returning the
      crates to
      their rightful owners.


      NY1 News (New York City), February 28, 2003
      http://www.ny1.com/ny/TopStories/SubTopic/index.html?
      topicintid=1&subtopicin
      tid=1&contentintid=28269
      Gay And Lesbian Politicians Ask For Inclusion In Parade
      Some of the city's gay and lesbian politicians are asking
      Mayor
      Michael Bloomberg to invite them to march in the annual St.
      Patrick's Day
      Parade up Fifth Avenue.
      Openly gay legislators City Councilwoman Christine Quinn,
      State
      Senator Tom Duane and other gay leaders made the request Thursday.
      According to Newsday, Assemblyman Danny O'Donnell blasted the mayor
      Thursday
      for "sending a dangerous message" that discrimination against
      homosexuals is
      acceptable.
      They say an invitation to march with the mayor would be a
      statement
      against parade organizers, who bar gay groups from walking under
      their own
      banner.
      If the gay politicians aren't invited, they argue Bloomberg
      should
      boycott the parade.
      The mayor is reportedly marching in at least four separate St.
      Patrick's Day events this year, including an "Inclusive" parade in
      Queens
      Sunday, an event organized as a protest of the traditional parade on
      Fifth
      Avenue.
      Last fall, the mayor sparked controversy by refusing to
      participate
      in the Columbus Day Parade because organizers objected to his two
      invited
      guests, Dominic Chianese and Lorraine Bracco, both actors from the
      HBO hit
      show "The Sopranos." Parade organizers had objected to the way
      Italian-Americans are portrayed in the mob drama.


      The Oregonian, February 28, 2003
      1320 SW Broadway, Portland, OR, 97201
      (Fax: 503-294-4193 ) (E-Mail: Letters@... )
      ( http://www.oregonlive.com/ )
      Letter: Support groups can help gay teens
      Shame on the Beaverton School District for ordering teacher
      Larry
      Smith to remove a sign advertising county-run support services for
      gay
      teen-agers ("Poster aimed at gay teens stirs storm," Feb. 14).
      Smith should
      instead be applauded for his bravery.
      On a very cold December night my freshman year in high
      school, I came
      home to find my lifeless friend and neighbor being taken away by
      ambulance
      after he shot himself in the head in the back yard.
      As our families said goodbye to him at the hospital I stayed
      behind
      and took care of the horrible mess so that no one would have to come
      back
      and see it - and I cried. Not only for my loss, not only for his
      family's
      loss, but because I knew that I was really just like him.
      I was gay and felt utterly isolated. I felt that I had
      nowhere to
      go. I was so afraid that I might come to the same end. His name
      was Kenny,
      and I will never forget what a beautiful human being he was.
      Just maybe if Kenny had seen a poster like the one Smith
      displays in
      his classroom, he wouldn't have felt so alone. I know that it could
      have
      helped me through subsequent years of torment.
      - Darin Brunstad, North Portland
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