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21st September, 2001 (# 5) News Clippings Digest.

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  • grahamu_1999@yahoo.com
    21st September, 2001 (# 5) News Clippings Digest. 1. SOUTH AFRICAN PRESS ASSOCIATION Legislation is introduced in South African Parliament to give benefits
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 22, 2001
      21st September, 2001 (# 5) News Clippings Digest.

      1. SOUTH AFRICAN PRESS ASSOCIATION Legislation is introduced in
      South African Parliament to give benefits to surviving same-sex
      partners of deceased judges
      2. ASSOCIATED PRESS Massachusetts: State Senate committee endorses
      bill offering health benefits to domestic partners
      3. LAKELAND (FL) LEDGER Two letters
      4. NORTH COUNTY TIMES (CA) Grant helps Lambda Health Clinic open
      5. NORTH COUNTY TIMES Commentary: Not the time for fanatics
      6. NORTH COUNTY TIMES Several letters, one from a NARTH apologist,
      plus several that actually make sense
      7. NORTH COUNTY TIMES Shallow commentary: "Backlash" against
      Scouts is wrong

      South African Press Association, September 21, 2001
      Breakthrough for gay judges
      Parliament - Draft legislation to ensure that the benefits
      by the spouses of deceased judges are also received by the partners of
      judges in permanent heterosexual or same sex relationships was tabled
      parliament on Friday.
      The matter was raised in the Pretoria High Court early last
      when a female judge asked the court to declare as unconstitutional
      legislation that prevented her lesbian partner from receiving the same
      benefits afforded the spouses of other judges.
      Johannesburg Judge Kathy Satchwell said it not only amounted to
      discrimination on the grounds of sexual status, but was also a
      violation of
      the fair labour practices requirement in the Constitution.
      Minimal extra cost
      In July 1999, Justice Minister Penuell Maduna instructed the
      African Law Commission to investigate the impact of such legislation
      homosexual partners and unmarried heterosexual couples living
      If passed by parliament, the draft Judicial Officers Amendment
      will extend the benefits normally received by spouses of deceased
      judges, to
      the partners of judges in permanent heterosexual or same sex
      According to a memorandum attached to the bill, the additional
      for this purpose are expected to be minimal, and can be accommodated
      in the
      existing budget.
      Appointment criteria
      The legislation also seeks to bring the criteria for the
      of magistrates in line with those of judges, as required by the
      This means that magistrates must be appropriately qualified
      and "fit
      and proper persons" to be appointed.
      The Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public
      Office-Bearers will make recommendations to the president on judges'
      magistrates' the salaries and allowances, including Constitutional
      The bill also provides for the head of the Constitutional
      Court to
      become the Chief Justice of South Africa, and for the head of the
      Court of Appeal to become President of the Supreme Court of Appeal.
      This is in line with proposed constitutional amendments.
      Provision is also made for the offices of Deputy Chief Justice
      Deputy President of the Supreme Court of Appeal, in the Judges'
      Renumerations and Conditions of Employment Act.
      A further provision establishes a mechanism to deal with
      against judges, as contemplated in the Constitution.

      Associated Press, September 21, 2001
      Committee endorses bill offering health benefits to domestic partners
      BOSTON (AP) - Gay, lesbian and unmarried state workers would
      be able
      to get health insurance for their domestic partners under a bill
      approved by
      a key state Senate committee Friday.
      The bill, approved by the Senate Ways and Means Committee,
      would also
      let cities and towns decide to offer domestic partner benefits as a
      A domestic partner is defined by the bill as someone of the
      same or
      opposite sex who shares financial responsibilities and a home with a
      They must also say that they are in a relationship of ''mutual
      support, care and commitment'' and plan to live together indefinitely.
      The Senate has approved two similar bills in recent years.
      became law.
      ''I approach it as a matter of basic fairness,'' said Senate
      President Thomas Birmingham, D-Chelsea.
      The full Senate is scheduled to vote on the bill Tuesday. It
      is also
      expected to vote on bills that would allow Cambridge and Brookline to
      domestic partner benefits to their employees.
      Opponents of domestic partner benefits say they places
      relationships on the same level as heterosexual marriages.
      They also say that giving unmarried heterosexual couples the
      benefits as married couples weakens the institution of marriage.
      In 1998, the Legislature passed a bill allowing Boston to
      provide the
      benefits known as a ''home rule petition'' but the bill was vetoed by
      Gov. Paul Cellucci.

      Lakeland Ledger, September 19, 2001
      Box 408, Lakeland, FL, 33802
      (Fax: 941-687-7987 )
      (Online mailer: http://www.theledger.com/editorial/letters/letter.htm
      Letter: Fanatic, Religious Fundamentalism Can Engender Hate, Bias
      When Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson and The Rev. Albert Mahler
      Jr., all
      agreed recently that God's judgmental punishment upon America was
      coming via
      the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, all because of
      God's anger
      toward "pagans, abortionists, feminists, gays and lesbians and the
      they revealed their evangelical fundamentalist bias. This theological
      distortion is not only ignorance but arrogance as well, by assuming
      they speak directly for God. By claiming that the Bible is
      infallible and
      using it in a literalist fashion, they consider themselves pious
      This theological posture is not only religiously bankrupt, but
      also advocates a theocratic nation with their own particular brand of
      morality as the basis of life in such a theocracy.
      The real tragedy of this kind of muddled thinking is that
      fundamentalism - whether it be Christian, Jewish or Islamic - in
      that they speak directly for God, is potentially dangerous because of
      fanaticism and extremism.
      If you want a classic example of a fundamentalist theocratic
      take a good look at Afghanistan. If you want examples of
      fanaticism at work, recall bombed-out abortion clinics, the murders of
      abortion doctors and the attacks on gays and lesbians.
      It is the kind of "funny-mentalism" that is the root cause of
      so much
      of our nation's bigotry and hate.
      - REV. ROBERT E. WILLOUGHBY, Lakeland
      (Editor's note: The Rev. Falwell apologized Monday for his
      made Thursday on Pat Robertson's television program, "The 700 Club.")

      Letter: Pull Together as Nation (September 16, 2001)
      According to the Rev. Jerry Falwell, God has lifted his
      from the United States because of the American Civil Liberties Union,
      gay-rights proponents, and the federal courts that banned school
      prayer and
      legalized abortion.
      I realize that, as a senior citizen, my memory is not what it
      used to
      be, but wasn't all of that as Foolwell, excuse me, Falwell is ranting
      in effect on Dec. 7, 1941? Or did the problem of terrorism indeed
      when President Truman fired Gen. Douglas MacArthur as claimed by
      Donald L.
      Stepp in his letter to you published Friday in The Ledger?
      If all of the above are true, then maybe that anonymous caller
      Polk Plus was right when he stated that the United States got a black
      and a little bloody nose that it deserved because of what it has been
      dishing out to other countries all these years. Apparently, that
      appreciates his right of freedom of speech, but I don't think that it
      be wise for him to reveal his identity -- at least not in a redneck
      or a
      biker bar. Perhaps, not even in a letter to the editor.
      Thankfully, we have competent people in the U.S. government
      who are
      working to develop realistic methods to prevent further tragedies
      such as
      the one in New York City from ever happening again. We need to give
      our full support and work united without regard to political, racial,
      religious persuasion or sexual orientation. We do not need to seek
      absolution by blaming others.
      - CLARENCE LAW, Lakeland

      North County Times, September 19, 2001
      207 E. Pennsylvania Ave., Escondido, CA, 92025
      (Fax: 619-740-5450 ) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.nctimes.net )
      Grant helps Lambda Health Clinic open
      DAN WEISMAN, Staff Writer
      SAN MARCOS - A $25,000 grant administered by the San Diego
      paved the way for Lambda Health Center, the first lesbian health
      clinic in
      San Diego County, to open its doors Tuesday.
      The new health center at 2210 Mesa Drive, Suite 7, in
      Oceanside is a
      satellite clinic for San Marcos-based North County Health Services.
      Officials received word last week the grant had gone through as part
      of an
      overall $175,000 in San Diego Foundation grants to 11 organizations
      serve local lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities.
      The money comes from a San Diego Lesbian & Gay Funding
      fund created by the foundation, the San Diego Human Dignity
      Foundation and
      the National Lesbian and Gay Funding Partnership.
      "This is the largest amount of funding ever to be given to our
      communities for non-HIV-related purposes," said Ed Richard, chairman
      of the
      San Diego Lesbian & Gay Funding Partnership.
      James Ziegler, a member of the San Diego Foundation and San
      Lesbian & Gay Funding Partnership boards, added: "The San Diego
      is very pleased to support San Diego's LGBT communities in this way.
      partnership is building a bridge between diverse communities in our
      promoting dialogue and awareness between these communities and thus
      improving the quality of life for all people in San Diego."
      Getting ready for opening day at the new Lambda Health Center,
      Keil, director of the center as well as of nursing and quality
      for North County Health Services, said the money would go for clinic
      "We will be open up to 12 hours a week from 3 to 6 p.m. on
      increasing to Wednesday, Thursday or a Saturday as we build a
      Keil said.
      "I am so excited, I really am," Keil said. "I worked a whole
      year to
      put this together. Lesbians in general have different health
      They feel more comfortable discussing their sexuality here than in
      going to
      a traditional office. We plan eventually to do some cultural
      training for
      all of our staff so everybody will understand how to treat them."
      The Lambda Health Center grant was one of the largest grants
      announced by foundation officials. Other grants went to a diverse
      cross-section of LGBT groups, including the Gay Men's Chorus of San
      the Lesbian and Gay Men's Center, Seniors Active in a Gay Environment
      and to
      the Foster Family Agency to develop specialized programs.
      Also, $25,000 went to a new endowment to serve San Diego LGBT
      communities in the future.
      Founded in 1975, the San Diego Foundation is the county's
      charitable foundation and manages more than $400 million in assets and
      houses more than 650 philanthropic funds. It has granted more than
      million to various programs and organizations.
      . Contact staff writer Dan Weisman at (760) 761-4414 or

      North County Times, September 18, 20001
      207 E. Pennsylvania Ave., Escondido, CA, 92025
      (Fax: 619-740-5450 ) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.nctimes.net )
      Commentary: Not the time for fanatics
      Robert Nanninga
      Like most Americans, I spent last week in front of the
      trying to make sense of what had happened. On Thursday, I stumbled
      into the
      dark side of the American character, that went far beyond
      Here in Cleveland I awoke to the news that graffiti had sprung
      overnight in residential neighborhoods with the message, "Arabs must
      It was scrawled across buildings and bus stops in red paint.
      nationalism is to be expected at times like this. But what one does
      expect, while bodies are still being pulled from the rubble, is
      blaming other Americans for acts of which they clearly are innocent.
      And I was shocked to hear the hateful propaganda being spread
      the banner of Christianity. The Rev. Pat Robertson said on his TV
      "America is experiencing contractions resulting from the birth of a
      world order centered around Christian revival." Robertson called
      upon Jerry
      Falwell for comment and Falwell, again showing his ignorance and
      intolerance, said that this was God's way of punishing Americans for
      permitting the work of the American Civil Liberties Union, the
      Organization of Women, and People for the American Way. He said that
      America is being punished for tolerating homosexuals and pagans.
      How can such men resort to fanaticism, in response to a
      fanatic act?
      These acts of terror were done by misguided humans, not by a
      Perceived acts of moral treason are not the issue here, and for
      Falwell and Robertson to state that it is, is simply un-American. In
      face of tragedy, we should be concerned about how we can support each
      not tear each other down. We are Americans first, last and always.
      Cultural heritage, religious beliefs, and sexual orientation
      secondary to our common, human bonds.

      North County Times, September 15, 2001

      Gay advocates should know both sides
      In response to Birgitta Soderstrom¹s Aug. 22 letter, "Opinions
      from fear and ignorance":
      Birgitta implies that Kim Oakley and Doris Cerea are bigots
      and that
      she hopes that they will endeavor to educate themselves so as to
      tolerance and compassion, etc.
      First, let me state that the education that Birgitta suggests
      for Kim
      and Doris is obviously totally lacking on her part. The fact that
      she could
      infer [sic: imply] that "they represent only a fragment of society,"
      is completely opposite from what is fact - they are in the majority,
      me that Birgitta, herself, has never studied both sides of the
      argument. I
      recommend that she log onto www.narth.com to get some enlightenment
      on the
      homosexual debate.
      Just as we have consumer advocate groups that find how much
      truth is
      in what the general public is being told or what they are being led to
      believe, with respect to any given situation, so it is with NARTH
      Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality). NARTH can be
      likened to a consumer advocate group, finding all the flaws in the
      that are being promoted by homosexuals as fact. More to come with
      to Birgitta¹s letter.
      - FRANK LANCELOTTI, Oceanside

      Letter: Answers to pro-straight letter writers (September 10, 2001)
      This is only one intended response to those recently
      expressing what
      could be called pro-straight sentiments in this column. Don't worry,
      Hank Krueger, Jack Kirby, Frank Clinton Lancelotti, etc., - I'll get
      to you.
      First up, Doris Cerea (Letters, Aug. 2) is incorrect to say
      using gay
      to denote homosexual is incorrect. It is not new to refer to someone
      as gay
      in this context. Such usage possibly began when actors in the early
      American theaters, some presumably homosexual, were said to be
      "living the
      gay life." Rent "Bringing Up Baby" and hear Cary Grant use gay in
      Yes, homosexual was an innocent scientific term, but developed
      a bad
      connotation through derisive use. Ms. Cerea herself equates
      with being "abnormal" and I defy her to assert that calling someone
      is considered flattering!
      Finally, I don't believe anybody raises a child to be gay, as
      Cerea seems to assume. Gays often report sensing their orientation
      at an
      early age. The author of "Loving Someone Gay" relates an incident
      when he
      was only 4 that clearly suggests his same-sex orientation was built-
      Perhaps reading all about it would answer Kim Oakley's query, also
      Aug. 2,
      "are people born gay?"
      - SHARON L. ROBERTSON, Oceanside

      Letter: Kirk should thank creator that he isn't gay
      Regarding Richard Kirk's Aug. 28 column, "It all starts at
      Can't argue with that. But what does parenting have to do with
      homosexuality? Does Kirk imply children of gays have access to the
      bedroom? Kirk implies homosexuality is one of choice. In all, he
      like to think heterosexuals are the only sexually moral ones.
      With his dreamed-up expertise he should be able to provide his
      intelligence on the following: Why is the highest rate of suicides
      gays? Why are gays demonized for sex acts that a great percentage of
      heterosexuals engage in? The fact of opposite partners does not
      the sameness of the act.
      Why are the bulk of rapes, sodomizings and killings done by
      heterosexuals? Why in a heterosexual family one of four siblings is
      gay in
      preteen years? It is difficult to ascertain Kirk's impetus. Does he
      recommend killing gays? Exiling them? He would do well thanking his
      creator for sparing him from this adversity.
      One need not fret over supposed gay influence. A simple "not
      interested" will do. They tend to seek each other out and, in many
      make better parents, Scouts, soldiers, citizens, etc., than the very
      It all starts at home. Those whose lineage is imbued by years
      ignorance spawn ignorance.
      - TED SPIEGEL, Escondido

      Letter: Civil discussion doesn't include name-calling
      There is an old adage among lawyers that can be paraphrased as
      the facts support your case, argue the facts. When the facts don't
      your case, pound the table." Steve Scott's Sept. 1 article in the
      Forum sounds like a whole lot of table pounding.
      Mr. Richard Kirk (Aug. 28) never stated that homosexuals
      weren't kind
      or generous; he also never pried into the privacy of their homes.
      These are
      fictions that Mr. Scott invents. Mr. Scott had a forum to reasonably
      Mr. Kirk's argument but instead he attacked Mr. Kirk and went right
      name-calling and impugning of character. Sounds like a classical
      case of
      table pounding. And for Mr. Scott's information, society already has
      for parents that protect the children from drugs, sexual abuse,
      abuse, neglect, etc.
      The question is not whether children should be protected, but
      what the children should be protected. That's the purpose of the
      discussion. Intelligent discussion doesn't include name-calling.
      - JOHN MAYR, Escondido

      Letter: Generalizations can promote bigotry
      One simple admonishment I'd like to see included in any set of
      contemporary post-on-the-wall commandments is: Don't generalize.
      It may sound trivial but generalizations are frequently the
      of discrimination and bigotry. What may be true in some cases is not
      necessarily true in all cases. An immature mind can draw hasty
      from too small a sampling, even if that sample is one's own experience
      (anecdotal evidence).
      If our first contact with a lawyer, counselor, doctor, auto
      person, used car dealer, etc., is a bad one, do we avoid them all?
      Conversely, if the experience is good, do we canonize them all?
      because we may have limited contact with them, are frequently harmed
      sweeping statements about them.
      Generalizations about gay and lesbian people really bother
      me. One
      outrageous generalization is that they all have but one lifestyle - a
      self-chosen, immoral one. Totally ridiculous! Like anybody else,
      they are
      capable of the greatest good, the greatest evil and everything in
      Tell you what, I won't condemn all non-gay people for the ugly
      killing of
      Mathew Shepard in Wyoming if you won't condemn the entire gay
      community for
      a crime one of them commits.
      - ROCKY VELGOS, Vista

      North County Times, September 5, 2001
      207 E. Pennsylvania Ave., Escondido, CA, 92025
      (Fax: 619-740-5450 ) (E-Mail: letters@... )
      ( http://www.nctimes.net )
      Commentary: Backlash against Scouts wrong
      Phillip Elliott
      I am very disappointed that both government and some
      have withdrawn support from the Boy Scouts because the Scouts have
      to admit openly gay men and boys.
      Some business, branches of government and organizations have
      maintained their support. All of this confirms it is a difficult and
      complex controversy with strong opinions on both sides.
      Being tolerant of others' sexual preferences is good for
      Minimizing blatant discrimination based on sexual preferences is also
      worthy goal. But to penalize a very important and cherished American
      traditional group whose goal is to build character in tomorrow's men
      because it refuses to admit openly gay participants is liberalism
      to the ridiculous.
      I think most people were not bothered at all by the acceptance
      ago of the idea that sexual preference ought to be a freedom that
      can have. The days of public support for attacking gays is gone.
      But this
      does not mean that most Americans support the idea that gay
      are to be considered normal and totally acceptable.
      The traditional family is still a cherished part of our
      history and
      tradition, from husband, wife and family crossing the plains during
      days to Rosie the Riveter helping at the home front while hubby was
      during World War II. This image of family and society is as much a
      part of
      America as the air we breathe.
      Traditions are important. They are the beacons that give a
      identity and the glue that holds it together. Thankfully, traditions
      change as a society progresses, but we need to let the forces of
      opinion provoke the change rather than have a change shoved down our
      by extremists or other offbeat do-gooders.
      We speak often of individual rights and too often ignore the
      collective individual rights of a group. Freedom to associate with
      whom we
      choose, and to set group norms and goals are pivotal freedoms in this
      nation. The Boy Scouts have a right to maintain their traditions.
      The Scouts are most probably moving toward a "don't ask, don't
      policy - gays must stay in the closet or leave Scouting. That seems
      wise to
      me. This would maintain encouraging heterosexual norms, and also not
      I do not think this controversy will go away. Probably the
      that could happen is for the openly gay extremists to win on some
      technicality, provoking a violent backlash against them and the law,
      and a
      return to days when gay men could choose between residing in a closet
      or a
      hospital bed.
      . Phillip Elliott lives in Lake Elsinore.
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