Harvey Milk Day, gay juror bias, Clay Aiken
Celebrate Harvey Milk’s birthday with some notable quotes, Congress gets bill to stop dismissals of potential jurors for being gay, Clay Aiken’s “Apprentice” charity, Jamaican reggae artist Beenie Man tries to evolve like Obama, bigoted pastors, and more LGBT headlines.
• Court: Gay Ohio student can wear “Jesus Is Not A Homophobe” shirt. Maverick Couch (top photo) sued and won the right to wear the shirt. The school district was also ordered to pay $20,000 in damages and court costs.
• Rutgers roommate sentence stirs up gay divide. Convicted of hate crimes for spy-camming gay roommate Tyler Clementi days before Clementi took his own life, Dharun Ravi’s 30-day jail sentence underscored the gay split over whether Ravi is the poster child for bullies or the victim of charges that didn’t fit the crime.
• Happy Harvey Milk Day! Take a look at some famous quotes as California officially commemorates the icon (second photo) on Tuesday, which would have been the slain gay rights leader’s 82nd birthday. 34 years later, is the gay movement on the fastest civil rights trajectory in history?
• Juror Non-Discrimination Act introduced in Congress. In several recent cases, gay members of jury pools were dismissed in cases with gay defendants. The bill would add sexual orientation to race and gender as illegal reasons to exclude a potential juror.
• Beenie Man changes tune on gay rights. The Jamaican musician (third photo) says that he, like Obama, needs room to evolve. Violently homophobic lyrics in his songs from the ‘90s are still hounding him, but he says he has learned to love and respect all human beings, including gay men and lesbians.
• Mississippi lawmaker stumbles through anti-gay Facebook comments. Pastor-turned legislator Andy Gipson railed on Obama’s gay marriage stance by quoting Leviticus, a passage some interpret as “death for homosexuality.” Gipson is simultaneously sticking to his guns and trying to distance himself from the blowback. Meanwhile, North Carolina pastor wants concentration camps for “queers.”
• “Celebrity Apprentice” makes Clay Aiken perennial runner-up. Like on “Idol,” the gay fan favorite (bottom photo) wasn’t chosen as the winner on Donald Trump’s reality show. Arsenio Hall won the final challenge, but Aiken raked in more than $360,000 for the National Inclusion Project.
• Buenos Aires opens up same-sex marriage to visitors. The Argentinian capitol decided to make its country’s legal marriages available to gay travelers to help fuel tourism.
Milk photo by AP; Couch photo by WCPO; Beenie Man photo from MTV; Aiken photo via NBC
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