#AM_Equality Tip Sheet: August 8, 2016
TODAY: ALA JUSTICE ROY MOORE TO BE QUESTIONED FOR DEFYING FED MARRIAGE EQUALITY RULINGS: Today, disgraced, notoriously anti-LGBTQ Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore will be questioned by judicial prosecutors during an ethics hearing examining his consistent defiance of pro-marriage equality federal rulings. Moore was suspended from the bench in May because of his actions. Following the hearing, HRC Alabama and the Southern Poverty Law Center will hold a press conference on the steps of the Alabama Supreme Court. Last week, HRC Alabama unveiled a billboard in Montgomery that reads“#NoMoore: Dismiss Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore.” More on the case from the The Associated Press.
MARCO RUBIO, MASTER CONTORTIONIST: U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), who shamelessly cited the Orlando nightclub attack that left 49 LGBTQ people and allies dead as a reason for running for re-election, is struggling to defend his appearance this week at a conference hosted by the notoriously anti-LGBTQ Liberty Counsel. In a letter to The Tampa Bay Times, Rubio characterized the Thursday event as a “celebration of faith,” attempting to sidestep the ugly, dangerous anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and actions perpetrated by the Liberty Counsel. Said JoDee Winterhof, HRC’s senior vice president of policy and political affairs: “Marco Rubio is sharing a stage in Orlando with some of the nation’s most odious anti-equality activists, including people who support dangerous and harmful conversion therapy here at home and are working to export anti-LGBTQ hate abroad, including targeting people for criminal prosecution because of whom they love.”
- Listen up, Sen. Rubio: The Orlando Sentinel takes a strong stand, calling for a statewide ban on LGBTQ discrimination.
WILMINGTON (NC) STAR NEWS SKEWERS HB2: The Wilmington (NC) Star News Editorial Board is the latest to call for full repeal of the state’s discriminatory HB2 law, calling it “an unnecessary law.” Published yesterday, the editorial asserts that the law continues to damage North Carolina’s economy and reputation. Read the full piece here.
- NJ Gov. Chris Christie was called out by Garden State Equality for criticizing the NBA’s principled decision to move the 2017 All-Star game out of NC because of HB2. “Sorry, Christie -- it’s called doing what is right,” the LGBTQ rights group said.
- Following SCOTUS’s deeply disappointing decision in Gloucester County School Board v. Grimm, the federal judge hearing arguments on HB2 has asked lawyers on both sides how the Supreme Court’s order putting transgender rights on hold should be factored in their case. The Associated Press has more.
TEXAS LAWMAKERS PLOT ANTI-TRANS BILLS IN 2017 SESSION: Next year, the Texas State Legislature is expected to consider discriminatory HB2-style legislation that would bar transgender residents and visitors from using public restroom facilities consistent with their gender identity. Lt. Governor Dan Patrick has been bullying school districts over their policies protecting transgender students since the Obama Administration issued guidance supporting these students earlier this year. According to The Star-Telegram, State Rep. Matt Shaheen (R-Plano) is among those planning to propose shameful anti-trans measures.
UGANDA PRIDE PARADE CANCELLED AFTER THREATS, VIOLENT POLICE RAID: Uganda’s annual Pride celebration scheduled for this past weekend was abruptly canceled by organizers following threats from a government minister. Advocates say Ethics Minister Simon Lokodo threatened to mobilize a mob to disrupt the Pride march scheduled for Saturday. Longtime Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni signed the country’s infamous Anti-Homosexuality Bill in 2014. Though subsequently invalidated, the law created a violent backlash against the LGBTQ community that persists to this day. Read more about LGBTQ rights in Uganda here.
- Ugandan LGBTQ advocates remain proud: Despite the most recent slate of violence targeting LGBTQ Ugandans, The Advocate reports on how the community continues to persevere.
GAYCATION PRESENTS ORLANDO: In an upcoming episode of her VICE TV show “Gaycation,” openly-LGBTQ actress Ellen Page heads to Orlando to learn more about the shooting at Pulse Nightclub that took the lives of 49 LGBTQ people and allies. The episode airing August 24 includes the stories of one survivor who managed to escape the club that night, and another who lost loved ones in the attack. More from Towleroad.
- The Associated Press reports that the fund for survivors and family members of the horrific shooting has raised $23 million.
MUST READ: MEET THE TRANSGENDER COACH WHO’S BREAKING DOWN BARRIERS: ICYMI, check out this inspiring Washington Post piece on Ava Benach, the transgender coach of the first all-girls baseball team in the Washington, DC, area. Benach hopes that coaching 8- to 12-year-old girls in a male-dominated sport, will help teach them that “limitations are in their head and that you shouldn’t let other people define you.” More here.
NINTH CIRCUIT DISMISSES CHALLENGE TO HI’S MARRIAGE EQUALITY LAW: Last week, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the dismissal of a case challenging Hawaii’s Marriage Equality Act. Marriage equality first came to Hawaii in 2013. More from KHON2.
The Chicago Tribune explains why it still matters that LGBTQ athletes live openly; USA Today profiles Iowa’s first transgender high school athlete; Lorri L. Jean writes in The Advocate all the ways Trump could roll back LGBTQ rights; Pink News shares how thousands are calling for marriage equality in Northern Ireland; QZ breaks down how LGBTQ history is being made at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, and USA Today highlights signs of LGBTQ acceptance during the opening ceremony; Sam Wolfe writes in The Advocate an open letter to queer Mormon youth; Fusion examines efforts to turn Buenos Aires into the LGBTQ capital of the world; KCCI spotlights One Iowa’s 2nd annual LGBTQ Senior Summit; and The Advocate remembers the transgender and gender non-conforming advocates who stood up to police violence 50 years ago in the Compton Cafeteria Riot.