Wednesday, December 16, 2009

MVA Threatens to Change Policy on Gender Markers

The MVA (Maryland Vehicle Administration) is updating their policies for next year and are thinking about changing their policy on gender markers. The new policy would make it harder for transgender individuals to change their gender, forcing them to show an amended birth certificate, go to court, and pay more fees. The current policy is working for everybody, so there isn't a reason to change it. For many transgender people it is very important to have legal documents that match their gender identity for a variety of reasons. The change would be effective on January 1st, 2010.

Current Policy: To change the gender marker, an applicant must provide a physician or psychologist’s report to confirm that the applicant is in active treatment. The MVA requires annual re-evaluations until the applicant "meets requirements for permanent gender change." If you are using a name other than your birth name, you must bring the document that initiated the change of name, such as a marriage certificate, divorce decree or court name change order and your current License.

New Policy: The new policy would require an amended birth certificate. This requires going through the court system. Maryland code states that they will issue a birth certificate reflecting the proper gender only upon receipt of a certified copy of an order of from a court indicating that the sex of an individual born has been changed by surgical procedure and whether such individual's name has been changed. You cannot change the sex on a birth certificate simply by providing proof that you are undergoing medical treatment or procedures for gender reassignment.

Do do something about this send a message here.

You can learn more at Equality Maryland.

Marriage Equality has Passed in D.C!

This is really great news. This Tuesday, D.C. approved the bill that legalizes gay marriage, so we could to over there and get legally married right now. The bill was approved 11-2 and will become a law in the spring after it goes through a 30 day legislative review period. Of course, many religious and conservative e groups will try and overturn it. The National Organization for Marriage sent out an e-mail almost instantly saying that they would overturn it but LGBT leaders in D.C. anticipated this this moment for a long time and are confident that they will be prepared.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


An conservative alternative to wikipedia has been made. Apparently wikipedia has too much liberal bias, which is why they created Conservapedia. It claims to be un-biased, factual, and represent the american public. I googled it and underneath the headline was a list of popular searches.
Here they are:
Barack Obama
Richard Dawkins
Conservative Bible Project
Bias in Wikipedia
Global Warming

So I went ahead and clicked on the link to homosexuality. The entire article is so biased I couldn't even read the whole thing. The sub-headlines associate homosexuality with drugs, pedophilia, and domestic violence among other things, but fail to mention anything remotely positive.

Here's a quote, "Studies have long indicated that homosexuals have a substantially greater risk of suffering from psychiatric problems (suicide, depression, bulimia, antisocial personality disorder, and substance abuse)".
Basically they're saying that being queer makes you depressed, etc. when really intolerance and discrimination is the catalyst.

you can go check it out at and be angry.
It is also featured in this episode of the Colbert Report.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

New York State Senator Diane Savino speaks on marriage equality. This is an amazing speech by an amazing woman. She makes a lot of excellent points.


Monday, November 30, 2009

LGBTQ Online High School

I just got an e-newsletter from the Gay Lesbian Community Center of Baltimore and in it was a little blurb about an LGBTQ high school that's just starting up. LGBTQ Online High School is going to open in early 2010. It will be a fully certified school that can grant High School Diplomas. The school is being created to provide LGBTQ students with a comfortable and safe environment to learn. Although there are many queer students who don't feel the need for this type of school, it would provide those who do (students who are harassed daily because of their sexual/gender identity) with an alternative.

The school will be run online (obviously), through video's, texts, and other electronic media, and any student who has internet would be able to access it. Some of the assignments are done in real-time, but the majority allow students to submit work at their own pace and on their own schedule.

There is some debate as the whether the creation of this school would segregate LGBTQ students, and whether that would have adverse effects on the overall student population.

To find out more, go to their website at

Sunday, November 15, 2009

New Candy Magazine

Louis Venegas, a Madrid-based fashion editor and magazine publisher is launching a new magazine. Candy is going to be the first 'transversal style' magazine that celebrates transvestism, transsexuality, cross-dressing and androgyny. It's a limited addition and will only sell 1,000 copies. And on the cover it's Kelly Osbourne's boyfriend, Luke Worrall.

Here's the video promo for it!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Catholic Church blackmails D.C.

The Catholic Church in D.C. has said that unless the city changes the proposed same-sex marriage law, they will discontinue the social service programs the church provides. This threat would impact the thousands of people that the church assists with adoption, homelessness, and healthcare. The church is not the largest non-profit organization, however, and in general their threats are seen as childish.

Here's an article with more information:

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Sarah's Puppets in Bmore Pride Parade

Thank all of you so much!

Nine days ago the skies cleared up and a beautiful group of youth and
young adults came together to march (and almost fly away in some cases!)
in Baltimore's pride parade.

Thank you to the many wonderful people who participated and helped make
this day great. (From creating something beautiful, to assisting when
strong winds blew, to u-hauling dyke-hunks with minivans and trucks who
schleped all the big stuff down there, and those far away for sending well
wishes via text!)

Here is a short video produced by metro weekly that some of our group is
featured in!

Check out some pics I posted on flickr.

There are more photos that other people took of us and posted as well if
you search something like pride parade baltimore 2009 you'll find them.

It was so great to be supported by friends near and far, new and dear.

Much love,

PS If you weren't there and didn't get to hear or talk to us this is some
of what you can expect from the pics.

Mike White II- can be seen wearing a giant self conceptualized and
designed sculpture of a door with working hinge that features many quotes,
photos and scenes of ways to get out there and get involved. Mike also
created a flyer he handed out targeting youth and young adults to fight
apathy, be active, and get involved.

Ryen Davis - in fresh off the run way haute couture Egyptian-inspired
retina blinding tin foil silver glitter love fest!

Sylvia Rivera Puppet- a glittering example of fighting for Transgender
rights was a puppet of Stonewall Veteran Sylvia Rivera, fresh out of the
bar and into the street with a highheel raised high and pointedly aimed
with the other hand in a tight fist. co-created by Guy and Sarah.

None other than the Pope- fresh back from his trip to Africa the Pope had
some time to come to his senses on his transatlantic flight after the
liberal media and HIV activists blasted him for telling his followers not
to use condoms and the use of them could actually increase your chance of
contracting HIV. but in a world of hope, change and possibility the Pope
changed his mind, came to Baltimore and to march in gay pride and brought
an alter boi to hand out 1,000 free condoms.

Beautiful youth designed and stenciled signs and buttons created in Becca
DiMeo's Healthy Relationships and Sexuality class at Kids on the Hill! Big
props to our straight allies!

and lots of helping hands holding down the puppets as they threaten to fly
away, a cardboard suit, plenty of mustaches and rainbow ribbon to go
around, 10ft span of rainbow butterfly wings that had to be abandoned...


Call For Submission: Bisexual Artists

Bisexual Artists is seeking artists who identify as Bisexual (or with a label inclusive of bisexuality, such as Pansexual, Fluid, Omnisexual, Ambisexual or Queer), to submit paintings, drawings, photographs, prints, or sculptures relating to their experiences of living as a bisexual person. This project is an opportunity for artists to represent what being bisexual means to them and to help promote the wide variety of people who are bisexual.

Hangable works will be limited to 8' in height and 6' in length. Sculptures will be limited to a base of 2' by 2', with a height no greater than 8'. Works may be either pre-existing work or work created specifically for the event. There should also be a paragraph description of the content of the work and how it relates to issues of bisexuality, bisexual identities and/or bisexual visibility (no more than 500 words).

Deadline for submissions is August 1st 2009. Please click here for complete information, submission guidelines, etc.

Artists selected for the exhibition will have their work on display in the San Francisco art gallery of Good Vibrations on Polk Street from Thursday October 8th 2009 thru Thursday, November 26th 2009.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

GLBT Social Networking Site

Pretty Pink Pearl is a site created by a lesbian couple from the UK. The site was originally a place to purchase T-shirts the couple designs, but it has now been updated as a GLBT social network. It's brand new so it's still in it's primitive stage, but it seems like a great way to meet GLBT members from outside of the US.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Homo Sex in Colonial America

From The Huffington Post
By Larry Kramer

No, there was no right word for it that you wanted to use for it if you were doing it. Buggery and sodomy connoted anal penetration and thus were, in many places, punishable by death.

That does not mean that men did not know they were gay (to use today's word), know what to do with their cocks, know when they were smitten with other men, know where to go to find them, know what it meant to get violently rejected, or the reverse, find a friend, in other words, the whole gestalt, to use another of today's terms. A penis has never been something that you pick up and put down and put away idly without consideration.

Continue reading

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Gay Kentucky Students: "You Can't Pee Here"

From The Advocate

May 04, 2009

By Michelle Garcia
Gay Kentucky Students:

Fifteen students protested outside a Frankfort, Ky., high school on Friday after an official allegedly sent a notification to teachers advising them to bar gay students from leaving class to use the restroom.

The reported e-mail was sent by Franklin County High School assistant principal Karen Buzard after two female students were reportedly seen kissing in a bathroom, according to the Kentucky Equality Federation.

A statement on the school's website says that students have not been singled out, but the directive was "that certain students should not be allowed to leave the classroom during class because they had been in violation of school rules. All students have time between classes to use the facilities."

Protesters waved rainbow flags and signs that read, "Honk if you're gay" and "We have a right to pee," the State-Journal reports.

Wayne Dominick, communications coordinator for the school district, said administrators are figuring out how to address students' concerns.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Transgender murder, hate crime conviction a first

By Jim Spellman

DENVER, Colorado (CNN) -- A Colorado man was convicted of first-degree murder and a bias-motivated crime and sentenced to life in prison for killing a transgender teen he met on an online social networking site.
Allen Andrade was convicted of first-degree murder and a hate crime in the slaying of a transgender teen.

It was the first time in the nation that a state hate crime statute resulted in a conviction in a transgender person's murder, the advocacy group Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation said.

Seated in the front row of the courtroom, the family of Justin "Angie" Zapata broke out in tears as the verdicts against Allen Andrade were read.

The jury deliberated for just under two hours before returning the verdict shortly after 3 p.m.

"I lost somebody so precious," said Maria Zapata, the victim's mother. She glanced at Andrade and continued: "The only thing he can't take away is the love and the memories that I have of my baby. My beautiful, beautiful baby."

Andrade spoke just one word. "No," he said when asked if he wished to address the court.

Judge Marcelo Kopcow then imposed the mandatory sentence for the first-degree murder conviction -- life in prison without parole.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

In turnaround, U.S. signs U.N. gay rights document

Wed Mar 18, 2009 2:21pm EDT

By Sue Pleming

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States, in a reversal of Bush administration policy, has decided to sign on to a U.N. declaration that calls for the decriminalization of homosexuality, the State Department said on Wednesday.

State Department spokesman Robert Wood said the Obama administration, which took office eight weeks ago, would now join 66 other U.N. member states who supported a U.N. statement in December that condemned human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

"The United States is an outspoken defender of human rights and critic of human rights abuses around the world," Wood told reporters.

"As such, we join with other supporters of this statement, and we will continue to remind countries of the importance of respecting the human rights of all people in all appropriate international fora."

Gay rights groups immediately welcomed the move.

"The administration's leadership on this issue will be a powerful rebuke of an earlier Bush administration position that sought to deny the universal application of human rights protections to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals," said Mark Bromley, who chairs the Council for Global Equality.

The U.N. General Assembly had been split over the issue of gay rights, with many Muslim countries refusing to sign on to the statement because of opposition to international attempts to legalize homosexuality.

A rival statement read out by Syria at the time gathered about 60 signatures from the 192-nation assembly.

The United States was the only western state not to sign on to the gay rights document. All European Union member states endorsed it, as did Canada, Australia and Japan.


In a move that angered U.S. gay rights groups, the Bush administration argued that the broad framing of the language in the statement created conflict with U.S. laws.

The rationale was that favoring gay rights in a U.N. document might be interpreted as an attempt by the U.S. federal government to override individual states' rights on issues like gay marriage.

Pressed on this issue, Wood said a "careful" interagency review by the Obama administration found that signing on to the U.N. document "commits us to no legal obligations."

Division in the General Assembly over the U.N. declaration reflects conflicting laws worldwide on the issue.

According to the sponsors of the Franco-Dutch text of the document, homosexuality is illegal in 77 countries, seven of which punish it by death.

At a townhall meeting in Brussels earlier this month, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was pressed on her views on gay rights.

"Human rights is and always will be one of the pillars of our foreign policy," she said. "In particular, persecution and discrimination against gays and lesbians is something we take very seriously."

(Additional reporting by Patrick Worsnip at the United Nations; Editing by John O'Callaghan)

© Thomson Reuters 2009 All rights reserved

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Pope Says Condoms Won't Solve AIDS

by The Associated Press, March 17, 2009 · Pope Benedict XVI said Tuesday that the distribution of condoms is not the answer in the fight against AIDS in Africa.

Benedict has never before spoken explicitly on condom use although he has stressed that the Roman Catholic Church is in the forefront of the battle against AIDS. The Vatican encourages sexual abstinence to fight the spread of the disease.

"You can't resolve it with the distribution of condoms," the pope told reporters aboard the Alitalia plane headed to Yaounde, Cameroon. "On the contrary, it increases the problem."

Some priests and nuns working with victims of the AIDS pandemic ravaging Africa question the church's opposition to condoms.

The pope also said that he intends to make an appeal for "international solidarity" for Africa in the face of the global economic downturn.

He said that while the church does not propose specific economic solutions, it can give "spiritual and moral" suggestions.

Describing the current crisis as the consequence of "a deficit of ethics in economic structures," the pope said, "It is here that the church can make a contribution."

Benedict's seven-day pilgrimage will take him to Cameroon and Angola.

Africa is the fastest-growing region for the Roman Catholic Church.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

When Anti-Gay Bullying Goes Unchecked: A Student's Story

From The Progressive Puppy

The boy's name is being withheld from the press, so we'll call him "David." David attended Hudson Middle School in Southeast Michigan. His parents are suing the school district for failing to protect their son...

When David was in the sixth grade, his classmates started calling him a faggot. His status at the school had deteriorated after he tried to prevent a female student from tormenting another kid. The girl slapped David. A band teacher named Crystal Bough witnessed the incident and didn't report it to the principle. Later that day in front of a classroom full of students, geography teacher John Redding ridiculed the boy, saying, "How does it feel to get beat up by a girl?" All of the children in the room laughed. All of them except David, who suddenly had a target on his back.

School officials did nothing.

Continue Reading...

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Inauguration News

"President-elect Barack Obama has asked V. Gene Robinson, the openly gay Episcopal bishop of New Hampshire, to deliver the invocation at an inaugural event on Sunday on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.
Gay rights advocates saw the move as a way to compensate for Mr. Obama’s decision to give the Rev. Rick Warren, a prominent megachurch pastor from California who opposes same-sex marriage, the high-profile role of delivering the invocation at the inauguration next week."

-Laurie Goodstein, for the New York Times

here is the rest of the article:

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Created Equal

MC FLOW - CREATED EQUAL from Rebecca Joelson on Vimeo.

for more on mc-flow, here is her myspace page:

good to see people still angry and doing things about this.