24th July 2007
Homophobic judge under investigation
11:50 AM — A Spanish judge who ordered a mother to choose between her partner and her daughters, because "a homosexual environment threatened their education," is under investigation.The woman, from Murcia, south east Spain, was faced with the impossible choice after her husband discovered her in a compromising position with another woman.He filed for divorce and was awarded custody of the couple's two daughters, after 'proving' his wife is a lesbian.
Trans tax challenge trial begins 3
11:12 AM — Rhiannon O'Donnabhain "lived in anguish" as a male, struggling with the sense that she was, in fact, a female.In 1996, she was diagnosed with gender identity disorder and undertook a course of professionally prescribed medical treatments that included her 2001 sex reassignment surgery.O'Donnabhain claimed the cost of her treatment as a deductible medical expense on her federal income tax return, but the Internal Revenue Service denied the claim.
23rd July 2007
Australian laws “discriminate against gays”
5:40 PM — An audit by the Australian National University has revealed that the federal system in the country is proving a barrier for gay equality.The Australian federal government is trailing behind some of its state and territory counterparts, where gay families are accorded the same rights as heterosexual ones.The inquiry considered the impact of legislative and policy frameworks, as well as social attitudes that affect the rights of gay families in Australia.
LGBT groups get UN recognition 1
11:25 AM — The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) has voted to accredit two gay rights organisations.Delegates came down in favour of allowing the Coalition gaie et lesbienne du Québec and the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights (RFSL) consultative status..22 countries voted in favour of both groups. Thirteen voted against the Quebec coalition and fourteen against the Swedish federation.
Out US general to speak against gay ban 5
10:50 AM — Army Brigadier General Keith H. Kerr, Army Colonel Stewart Bornhoft, Navy Captain Joan E. Darrah (all retired) and five other former military officers will speak out against the US military's anti-gay 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy at a programme benefiting the Servicemembers Legal Defence Network (SLDN) in Chicago next month.General Kerr was one of three senior military officers - two generals and an admiral - to "come out" in the New York Times in December 2003.
Reggae star turns his back on homophobia 1
10:10 AM — Reggae star Buju Banton has become the latest homophobic performer to renounce homophobia and condemn violence against lesbians and gay men.He has signed up to the Reggae Compassionate Act in a deal brokered with top reggae promoters and Stop Murder Music activists.His decision is in marked contrast to his attitude in October 2006, when two of his concerts in the US were cancelled after pressure from gay activists.
20th July 2007
Homophobic slur against gay politician enrages GLAAD 2
4:08 PM — The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, a US group that monitors media representation, has protested against a cartoon lampooning former New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevey.The cartoon refers to the minor scandal surrounding the release of compromising photos of the current Miss New Jersey, Amy Polumbo. There were attempts to blackmail her over the photos.Mr McGreevey shot to international fame in 2004 when he declared at a press conference "I am a gay American."
Trans academic challenges Darwin’s evolution theories
3:40 PM — The annual meeting of America's Lesbian and Gay Veterinary Medical Association has heard a damning critique of the sexual selection theories of Charles Darwin.Joan Roughgarden, a biologist at Stanford University, says that the accepted notion that male animals compete for mates, while the females choose males with care, is "locker room bravado projected onto animals."Sexual selection asserts that males want to have sex with as many females as possible to pass on their genes.
Sperm donor stops lesbian parents taking their baby abroad 5
3:05 PM — A court in Dublin has ruled in favour of a man who wants to stop a lesbian couple leaving Ireland with their child. The man is the biological father of the 14-month-old baby.The High Court ruled that the child's birth mother may not holiday in her home country of Australia with the child and her partner.The lesbian couple have entered into a civil partnership in the UK and are considering moving to Australia permanently.
UN votes today on accreditation for gay rights groups 1
2:45 PM — The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) is due to vote today on whether to accredit two non-governmental organisations (NGOs) who address human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity.It is thought nine countries are going to vote against accrediting the groups.ECOSOC accreditation governs whether NGOs can attend UN meetings, submit written statements, make oral interventions, host panels and get access to UN buildings.
19th July 2007
Moscow police protect gay protest against Iranian hangings 1
6:20 PM — More than twenty Russian activists protested outside the Iranian embassy in Moscow today, the second anniversary of the execution of two gay teenagers in Iran.A group of nationalists and religious activists who turned up to counter-demonstrate were stopped by police and dispersed.While this was seen as a positive step after the bloody police actions at a gay Pride demonstration earlier this year, it emerged that the application for the Iran protest did not mention gay rights.
Gene discovery may help AIDS treatment
6:20 PM — A study this month in Science magazine announced that scientists have identified three genes that help some HIV-infected people slow down the spread of the virus and postpone the onset of AIDS.This new information may help doctors to develop a vaccine and drugs to help prevent and fight off the HIV virus.The international team of researchers scanned the genomes of 486 HIV-infected people.
Gay veterans hold ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ roadshow
12:45 PM — A group of former US servicemen are touring America to share their experiences of life in the military, where being openly gay is against the law.The campaign, called Legacy of Service, aims to demonstrate to Americans the hardships and unfairness of a policy, 'Don't Ask Don't Tell,' that keeps soldiers, sailors, air force and coast guard personnel in the closet.No-one knows how many gay, lesbian or bisexual servicemen and women are currently serving in the US military.
Gay ban on dating site starts backlash 1
11:47 AM — A new website that welcomes people rejected from dating service because they are gay has launched a cheeky advertising campaign.The debate in the US over gay marriage has spilled over into the world of online dating. eHarmony, a popular site, has been heavily criticised over its heterosexuals-only policy.The site's founder has added insult to injury by declaring that eHarmony is about marriage.
Irish urged to be courageous over gay eqaulity
11:25 AM — A prominent Australian judge has urged Ireland's Law Reform Commission to be strong, courageous and bold when pushing forward gay equality.Justice Michael Kirby, a Justice of the Australian High Court, has lived openly with his gay partner for the last 37 years.He was in Dublin yesterday to address the commission. The judge spoke about his experiences of discrimination.
Second chance for actor Isaiah Washington
11:10 AM — Less than a month after ABC told Isaiah Washington his services would no longer be needed on the top rated Grey's Anatomy, the actor who infamously referred to co-star T.R. Knight as a 'faggot' and then repeated the word at the Golden Globes found a new job, as a recurring character on NBC's much hyped Bionic Woman remake.Back in May, when Dr. Preston Burke (Washington) left his fiancee (Sandra Oh) at the altar, the actor's status on the series was left up in the air.
Fight for benefits after death of partner
10:40 AM — Gay rights group Lambda Legal filed its opening brief last week in the Court of Appeals of Virginia on behalf of a 48-year-old Keysville man improperly denied death benefits stemming from an accident that ultimately led to the death of his same-sex partner in 2005."This case is about making sure that the rules are applied fairly to everyone," Greg Nevins, senior staff attorney in Lambda Legal's Southern Regional Office, said.
18th July 2007
MEPs to attend Pride in Estonia 1
12:23 PM — A year after violent homophobic attacks against Tallinn Pride, organisers have revealed that politicians from across Europe will be turning up this year to show their support.Last year LGBT marchers were attacked with sticks and stones by a group of young Estonian nationalists while celebrating the country's gay third pride event.This year's event, on August 11th, has been beset by problems with policing.
Pacific Games gay sex embargo lifted
12:07 PM — The organisers of a major sporting event in Samoa have said they will change guidance that banned gay and lesbian competitors from having sex.The rules, published by Samoa team managers yesterday, apply only to Samoan athletes competing in the Pacific Games, a multi-sport event held later this year.The organising committee moved quickly to reject the rules and order changes.
Woman sues tax authorities over reassignment surgery 3
11:50 AM — A trans person is suing the Internal Revenue Service in the US for not allowing her to write off her gender reassignment operation as a legitimate medical expense.Trans activists are watching the case closely, as a defeat for the IRS would open the way for thousands of people to avoid paying tax on reassignment surgeries.The IRS contend that such surgery is not "essential" and therefore cannot be claimed against.