Tel Aviv Gay Pride Parade Draws Thousands
The Guardian reports that thousands of people celebrated Gay Pride in Tel Aviv in early June. After the parade, people partied on Tel Aviv’s Gordon Beach. Organizers estimated the crowds at more than 100,000.
French Parliament Rejects Same-Sex Marriage Bill
The Associated Press reports that France’s National Assembly rejected a bill to legalize same-sex marriage. The measure failed in the French Parliament’s lower house by a vote of 293 to 222. Opposition to the bill was led by President Nicolas Sarkozy’s ruling Conservative Party.
Croatian Leader Slams “Shameful” Gay Pride Parade Violence
Radio Free Europe reports that Croatian President Ivo Josipovic has condemned violence at a gay rights march in the coastal city of Split. According to news accounts, 10,000 antigay protesters hurled rocks and bottles at the 200 people holding a Gay Pride parade. A dozen people were injured, among them four journalists. Josipovic said the violence was “not Croatia’s real face.”
Utah’s First Openly Gay Legislator Resigns
The Salt Lake Tribune reports that Representative Jacki Biskupski, Utah’s first openly gay legislator, has announced she is resigning her seat because she intends to move out of the district she currently represents. She has served for the past 12 years. In the past 19 months, all three of the state’s openly gay legislators have resigned.
Disabled Gay Couple Kicked Out of Kentucky Pool
The Kentucky Equality Federation says it’s planning a protest over a gay couple with developmental disabilities who were allegedly kicked out of a recreational center in Hazard, Kentucky. A spokesman for the couple said staff at the Hazard Pavilion told the couple to leave the swimming pool because “gay people weren’t allowed to swim there.” The Hazard City Attorney stated, however, “There is a dispute as to the facts that transpired.”
Another Lesbian Blogger Admits He’s A Man
Following news that the author of a popular blog allegedly written by a Syrian lesbian was, in fact, a married heterosexual man, The Washington Post reports that the woman behind a popular gay and lesbian news blog, Lez Get Real, also is actually a heterosexual man. Bill Graber admitted that he ran the site using his wife’s identity for the past three years. Graber told the Post, “I didn’t start this with my name because…I thought people wouldn’t take it seriously, me being a straight man.” He said he will turn the blog over to a lesbian contributor to the site.
Suit Challenges Tennessee Antidiscrimination Limits
Business Week reports that some of Nashville’s City Council members and others are suing the State of Tennessee over a new law prohibiting local governments from creating antidiscrimination regulations that go beyond state protections. The law repealed a Nashville ordinance that prevented discrimination based on sexual orientation. It also voided a Nashville school policy that protected GLBT students from bullying.
Gay Teens More Likely to Smoke, Drink, Carry Guns
Reuters reports that a new study from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) shows that gay, lesbian, and bisexual high school students are more likely than their heterosexual peers to smoke, drink alcohol, and carry guns. Howell Wechsler, Director of the CDC’s Division of Adolescent and School Heath, told reporters, “We are very concerned that these students face such dramatic disparities for so many different health risks.” Gay and lesbian students were twice as likely to have driven a car while drinking alcohol within the last 30 days, three times as likely to have smoked more than 10 cigarettes in a day during the previous month, and four times as likely to have carried a gun to school at least once during the previous month.