BigGayNews from Mississippi:
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant Signs Anti-Gay Bill
Politico reports that Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed a bill Thursday that supporters say will assure unfettered practice of religion without government interference.
Opponents worry that it could lead to state-sanctioned discrimination against gays and lesbians.
The bill, called the Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act, will become law July 1.
More than 75 gay-rights supporters protested against the bill outside the state capitol.
BigGayNews from Washington:
Geoff McGrath, Gay Boy Scout Troop Leader, Allegedly Kicked Out Of Organization
The Huffington Post reports that the Boy Scouts of America is coming under fire for reportedly removing and subsequently banning an openly gay scout leader from his position in the organization.
Geoff McGrath’s charter for his troop was approved by the BSA last fall even though McGrath made no attempt to hide his sexuality or his public support for GLBT rights, although a spokesperson for the Boy Scouts said that they were previously unaware that McGrath was gay.
McGrath’s troop is sponsored through Rainier Beach Methodist Church, and reportedly church members intend to stand behind him.
BigGayNews from Oregon:
Jessica Dutro, Oregon Mom, Allegedly Killed Son Because She Thought He Was Gay
The Huffington Post reports that an Oregon mother is facing murder charges after allegedly subjecting her 4-year-old son to deadly beatings because she thought he was gay.
At the moment, Jessica Dutro is facing charges of murder, murder by abuse and second-degree assault in the death of Zachary Dutro-Boggess, who apparently died from blunt-force to the abdomen.
Prosecutors point to comments that Dutro made on her Facebook message to Brian Canady, her boyfriend at the time, in which she used a gay slur and said that the boy “walks and talks like it”, and that Canady needed to “work on” her son.
BigGayNews from California:
College Football Defensive End Mitch Eby Comes Out As Gay
OutSports reports that Mitch Eby gave a moving coming-out speech to his Chapman University football team on March 18th that sent them into applause, with one teammate calling him his hero.
The junior defensive end had been hiding his sexuality for years, but finally realized that he needed to make the decision to come out to his friends and teammates after becoming friends with Conner Mertens, the freshman kicker at Williamette University who came out in January.
Eby said that he has been relieved and pleased with the reaction to his coming out, and that he’s glad that he can finally accept who he is and be open about himself to those closest to him.
BigGayNews from Hollywood:
Wonder Woman Stands By 8-Year-Old Tomboy Kicked Out Of Christian School
Advocate.com reports that Lynda Carter, the iconic “Wonder Woman” star, tweeted her support for young Sunnie Kahle after she was removed from her Christian elementary school for ‘exhibiting an alternative gender identity’.
Carter tweeted the message “Sending love to little Sunnie Kahle! Stay strong and love who you are…short hair, sneakers and all” to the child who had been asked by her school to not come back for the next school year unless she began dressing and acting more like a girl.
Carter has long been an outspoken supporter of women’s and GLBT rights.
BigGayNews from Uganda:
Uganda President Leads Anti-Gay Rally
Aljazeera reports that Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has led a rally celebrating his country’s new anti-gay laws, saying homosexuality creates grave health problems and that gays have always been regarded as abnormal by Africans.
The comments were made before a crowd of thousands on Monday, and drew rousing cheers when Museveni vowed that Uganda and its people would be fine without Western aid and support.
Museveni also said that he is “now mobilizing to fight” Western gays, who he says are promoting homosexuality in Africa.
BigGayNews from Great Britain:
Britain’s First Same-Sex Marriages Take Place As PM Speaks Of ‘Powerful Message’
The Guardian reports that ceremonies are taking place in England and Wales as people take advantage of the new law permitting same-sex marriages.
Prime Minister David Cameron applauded the marriages as sending what he said was a “powerful message” about equality in Britain, and stated that his strong support of reform was due to his feeling that “when people’s love is divided by law, it is that law that needs to change.”
Although the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) Act went into effect last July, it wasn’t until March 13th of this year that couples were able to register for marriage licenses.
BigGayNews from South Africa:
Gay South African Brutally Murdered
Advocate.com reports that a 21-year-old gay man in South Africa was tortured and murdered in the Belle Vista neighborhood of Ceres – and the alleged suspect reportedly invited as many as seven teenagers to watch the brutal assault.
David Olyn was beaten, tied with a wire, and then, according to teenage witnesses, a suspect smashed Olyn’s head with a brick, stomped on his face, and set him on fire. The teens did not report the incident until they returned the next day to look at the body, when they told a local woman who then called police.
A 28-year-old man is currently in custody on murder charges.