Bush plans to veto hate crimes bill

I was thrilled when I read the Hate Crimes Bill passed the House today but then I was immediately disappointed when I learned the White House issued a veto threat just hours before the bill's passage.

On what grounds?

The White House, in a statement warning of a veto, said state and local criminal laws already cover the new crimes defined under the bill, and there was ''no persuasive demonstration of any need to federalize such a potentially large range of violent crime enforcement.''

On the cusp of victims rights week last month, our attorney general appeared and spoke sympathetically for increased protections and support for victims of rape, physical abuse and homicide but now, it is apparent gay and transgendered Americans are a lower class citizen who don't deserve this type of assistance.

The Judiciary Committee cited FBI figures that there have been more than 113,000 hate crimes since 1991, including 7,163 in 1995. It said that racially motivated bias accounted for 55 percent of those incidents, religious bias for 17 percent, sexual orientation bias for 14 percent and ethnicity bias for 14 percent.

Fourteen percent is a lot if you think about it. We cannot rest until there are ZERO hate crimes committed. Ronald Reagan would be ashamed of Bush's veto threat.

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Mickey Mouse Wants Gay $$$, Not Gay Weddings

crossposted at the kos

Recent reports about Disneyworld refusing to hold gay weddings should serve as a wake up call to all queer Americans that just because a company has a history of supporting our community, it does not mean that they will be there when the topic shifts to controversial issues that our community is fighting for today.

According to the Human Rights Campaign's corporate equality index, Walt Disney scores a 95 out of 100 for the protections they offer their queer workers. The item that holds them back from getting a perfect score is the fact that they do not offer diversity training including gender identity or that they do not have supportive gender transition guidelines in place, but I would argue that this recent marriage controversy may have opened up a pandora's box that ultimately should bring down Disney's rating in the Corporate Equality Index.

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Gay Rights Leaders Arrested Protesting Pace's Remarks

crossposted from the Kos

Times Square has been the scene of much protest in the past few days. Over the last week, a collection of anti-war groups such as Gold Star Families for Peace and United for Peace and Justice NYC have gathered in Times Square to read the names of American soldiers, Iraqi civilians and coalition forces who have lost their lives in the Iraq War. Today, these groups were joined by other groups protesting General Pace's recent comments- in his "Tim Hardaway" moment- denigrating our country's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) servicemen and women by calling all LGBT folk "immoral".

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Progressive Action Coalition Announces 42nd AD Slate

The Progressive Action Coalition urges all registered Democrats who live in the 42nd Assembly District of California (Hancock Park, Beechwood Canyon, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, Hollywood Hills, Beverly Glen, Bel Air, Brentwood, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Valley Village) to vote at the 42nd Assembly District Democratic Party delegate elections on:

Sunday, January 14 2-4pm
Beverly Hills Library Auditorium
444 N. Rexford Drive
(a $5 fee may be charged to pay for the facility)
You are permitted to vote without staying for the event program.

The Progressive Action Coalition, a group of Progressive activists including  members of the CDP Progressive Caucus, Labor groups, Stonewall Democratic Club, West Hollywood Democratic Club, Valley Grassroots for Democracy, Sherman Oaks Democratic Club, Action Democrats, San Fernando Valley Young Democrats, Los Angeles County Young Democrats, Stonewall Young Democrats  and Drinking Liberally, are proud to announce a joint coalition to fight for Progressive Values in an inclusive way, working with others instead of dividing ourselves, concentrating on action instead of merely giving opinions and organizing to keep the California Democratic Party's dedication to Progressive values strong, but united.

Here is what we believe in:

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Key GOP Tactic Failing in Key State

So CNN reports that the most "representative" state in the country is now Wisconsin:

http://www.cnn.com/2006/POLITICS/07/27/m g.thu/index.html

This is important, because Wisconsin is also where a key Republican strategy -- antigay constitutional amendments -- has run out of steam.  A recent poll found supporters and opponents of the ban in Wisconsin in a statistical dead heat:

http://wispolitics.com/index.iml?Article =66198

Fair Wisconsin, the group leading the campaign against the ban, is already running TV ads and has volunteer coordinators at work in all 72 Wisconsin counties.

This has the potential to give the Republicans their first-ever black eye on this issue.

Fair Wisconsin is showing that it's possible to take this tactic and give the Republicans the exact opposite of what they wanted: a strong campaign that draws people out to vote from the progressive side instead of the conservative side -- and all this in the most "representative" state in the country.

It's a sign of things to come...

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